Addiction. Damn it!

Addiction is a tricky idea & a dangerous one to those who are trying to find the deeper, better part of themselves.

How does anyone move on from actions, thoughts, abuses, emotional ties, things that seem to bind to the core? It is hard to see people struggle with inner demons and unable to see the chain that is dragging them farther from their higher self.

Addiction. Damn it!!

So, with that happy thought. smile. smile. I am going to find some images and quotes that may shed some light and take any of you out there that struggle with addiction to a better place for THIS moment. This one is for my brother. May you find hope. LOVE YOU.

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I LOVE YOU BRO. May each day find you a little better. xoxo

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Ideas to Nourish your SOUL

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“It takes a fearless soul to live in the mystery.”  -Elizabeth Lesser

To me this says—you have to FEAR LESS to truly believe in the faith of something greater…bigger…the whole of all that is. The awareness that you are Divinely connected to a God that wants what is best for you. From that Divine connection comes a guidance, a belief, a faith that all that is mysterious, unanswered, feared can be hushed with a whisper from the guidance you hold within.

To be able to fear less we must be patient and have a simple understanding of who we are seeking to become. We are little children in spirit, we seek to be better, but our smallness leads us to believe that our greatness is hiding. While we play this game of hide and seek, we must daily seek to understand our deepest needs.

“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and books that are written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.”  -Rainer Maria Rilke

Seek to do things that will bring you closer to what your soul needs, to the higher aspiration of yourself. When we begin to  strive to “LIVE EVERYTHING” the things that help us grow, the moments that challenge us, to have patience with the questions that are unanswered, to jump, to sing, to love, to live…we will begin to be who we are meant to be. Like a child, we begin to shine.

Here are a few ideas to help you on a quest to nourish your soul:

Listen to your feelings: I cannot say this enough. You have inner tuition and guidance that is a gift given to you, but if you do not listen, it is of no use to you. Begin to feel and notice things that are given to you as a direction. Ex: If you are drawn to a book to read–buy it, read it. If you feel you are meant to call someone, do it. We often receive a little nudge to do something, but how often do we do it.  I have a great story that goes along with this. Last week my husband was going on a little day trip & I had this feeling to suggest the audio book, The Traveler’s Gift. He came home in ah of what he had listened to & began to explain the parallels of our life and the character in the book—guy who just lost his job, is married to a brunette, they have one daughter, the main character gets to a point where he tried to take his life…& then the story begins to help him with different life lessons from men throughout history. My husband loves it!! He is listening to the rest of it this week. No question—it was inspired for this time in our life. Listen to the needs within. Allow yourself to be guided & you will begin to see the gifts these directions hold.

Self-worth: Do you have limiting beliefs about yourself that is holding you back. Not loving yourself is a tough place to do soul work. I know I do have limiting self believes and I know it is a process of working through insecurities to get you to a higher place. We often see and focus on our personal inadequacies. Dove did a great campaign that illustrates how we personally see ourselves in a more negative light than most people around us. Here is a link to the “You are more beautiful than you think” Real Beauty Sketches…http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=litXW91UauE   It is very powerful, so take a look. We need to begin to focus and appreciate our personal strengths and the beauty we truly hold within.

Do things that light you up—things you love: Fill your day with as many possible moments of something you enjoy doing. Whether you love reading to your kids, being with your family, riding a bike, listening to beautiful music, talking with good friends, eating good food, being creative, going on a walk, do something that sings to your soul. Your soul needs nourishment and pleasure, so if you just fill your day with stress and worry, what does your soul have to feel good about.

Get quiet: Turn off the television. Take a break from the world. Take a nap, meditate, yoga, breathe. Quieting your world does wonders for everyone. I have been chopping television out of my daughters routine. Yesterday, I sat with her quietly and told her she could draw, color, listen to calming music and have some quiet time. She sat there with me for a few minutes and then said, “This is stupid. I hate this.”  I calmly shared with her the options again and we decided to snuggle up together and fall asleep. It was nice to see her rest. Her little body goes and goes, so the sleep was just what she needed–she awoke refreshed and relaxed.

Plant something: Everyone has there “something” that nourishes the soul. The other day I was having a conversation with my mom and she was quite emotional. She has been living in my home for nearly two years, after someone swindled my parents out of their retirement. She was having a moment, missing her home, wishing she had more money…I looked at her and whispered, “what do you really need?”  She began to cry even more, “Peace.” She then began to talk about how she missed her yard, how she missed planting flowers, tilling, watering and how it was so nourishing to her soul. I smiled, “we have a whole yard you can plant flowers or we can get you a big pot to container garden.”  She smiled.      Everyone has that little something that helps to nourish within. Seek to find those moments and do little things that will bring you hope, that will make you laugh, that will hold you close to the divinity within you.

Most of all…LOVE. Love reminds us of all things. It heals, it helps, it circles, it connects, it remembers where we truly came from.

Peace to you. Have a beautiful day.  -Heather

Looking for the Gift of Grace

ImageI do not at all understand the mystery of grace, only that it meets us where we are but does not leave us where it found us.
-Anne Lamott 

The word “Grace” derives from the Greek, chars. In Secular Greek, chars was related to chair, “to rejoice.”

Over the years I have learned to look for the tiny signs, the details that may lead me to a moment of grace, a moment of quiet rejoicing, in finding that I am truly not alone in this world.

I want you to think of a time where life was painful or you felt alone or you needed comfort and someone showed up, or you received a phone call you needed to hear or a special song played on the radio just for you.  I want you to think about the smallest threads that have held you together when you felt like things were unraveling around you. It is through these moments that we can find that quiet place of grace.

I have been very blessed with little moments when I need them most. It’s as if at my lowest points there is a glimpse or shimmer of something bigger than me. When I need an answer more than ever, I am handed a gracious gift. They may seem small and insignificant to you, but to me they are cherished jewels that I can string together and hold on to.

I wanted to share a few of these moments with you, so hopefully you will look all around you and see a moment, a sign, a gift of grace…

Just the other day I had been thinking and praying to know what is going to happen with my husbands professional career…would he find a job, will he be able to handle the pressure, will we have to move? I had been feeling very anxious, needing to know what lies ahead, wondering if we will have to move again, concerned about how my daughter Kate will handle such change…on and on the worries played.

Then, that night while we tucked our daughter into bed we were debating if we should listen to music, read a story, etc. I lifted up our little children’s devotion book and my daughter grabbed it out of my hands and started flipping through the pages. She said, “lets do the day of my birthday.” We had practically missed almost every day in February, so I was fine going back to her special day. We began to read and I instantly knew the message was for me, for all of us. It read…THE FUTURE IS MY SECRET…Sometimes you think it might be nice to know the future, what to expect, how things will turn out. There are even some people who claim they can tell you the future. But the future is a secret. It is my secret. When you try to figure out the future you are reaching for something that is Mine. My keeping your future a secret, I am teaching you to depend on Me. Trust My promises to care for you, to look out for you. I will show you the next step you need to take, and the one after that, and the one after that–one step at a time. Don’t try to rush ahead of Me. Just relax and enjoy the journey to your future–one day at a time.

Another moment was a time when my husband was leaving town on a business trip. He had been really stressed with work, had not had time to physically work out and things were really getting to him.  I was worried, really worried about where he was in his mind. He had been very emotional. I stood in our driveway with our little girl and we watched him drive away. I had this terrible feeling come over me and I was filled with more worry and concern. I felt like we may never see him again, that something was going to happen. I grabbed my daughter’s hand and told her we needed to say a prayer for Daddy. She asked me why and I told her I was a little worried for Dad and that we needed to pray for him to be safe. We said a prayer and I still felt a little unsettled. I saw Louise Hay’s affirmation cards and I grabbed one from the stack, it read, “I move through life knowing that I am safe—Divinely protected and guided.” A wave of calm ran through my body and peace filled me and I knew he would be okay.

One last moment I will share was this last summer when my little family was deciding if we should make a special trip to the Oregon coast.  I have wanted to go visit the Redwood Forest for years and my husbands job was constantly taking him to Washington and Oregon, so we were thinking this would be a good time to go. I began planning, looking at costs, trying to figure out if it would be good timing when my daughter ended up in the hospital a few months before with Pneumonia. Thankfully she was there only a couple days and got better, but then the medical bills came, our car had some issues and the Redwood trip looked like it should be pushed back to another year. The day we had decided the timing was not right I had a couple of moments of grace…that same day I was looking through my book collection for a book to include in a teacher appreciation basket. I came across a book called  “The Woman’s book of Confidence.” I began to flip through the pages to make sure there were not any notes or markings when I came across a page titled, “Deep Roots.” I was curious and began to read, it was all about this women’s trip along the coast and the Redwood forest. I knew this was a sign. I immediately called my husband and told him we needed to go. Later that same day I took a walk through the forest near my home. I was smiling to myself thinking about the amazing coincidence that had just occurred when a voice in my head said, “it’s about time you got it!! I have been trying to tell you, I even had you move to Redwood Drive.”  I laughed out loud at this funny moment. There was definitely inspiration about!! It is a good thing we took the adventure to the coast because now my husband will not be traveling to Oregon or Washington again. Thank heavens for that amazing trip. I am glad we listened.

Well, inspiration, grace, whispers, feelings, thoughts, all echo the same song…that you are not alone, so look for the little signs, pick up the books that seem to call you, fill your heart with wonder, look for the magic in all things and know you are not alone.

Lots of love and grace filled moments to you. -Heather

DANCE. RISE. SHINE. SHARE for LOVE

HAPPY VALENTINES! A good way to spread LOVE today.

This video made me cry just thinking about women throughout the world who have lived in fear, who have not felt loved, who fight to survive, who try to be heard, who are standing up today to make a small difference in the world.
I did what I could and danced with my little girl in our kitchen and through our hands up in the air showing our support with one another.
I challenge any and all of you to get your families, your sisters, your daughters, those you love and dance in some way to show your love and support for those dancing to make a difference in the world!!
What a great message of LOVE!!
Peace and love to you.
You can check out the organization and see other groups all over the world dancing to make a difference. http://www.onebillionrising.org

We are Fearfully and Wonderfully made.

ImageWe are fearfully and wonderfully made.

I just had a tear filled conversation with my mother-in-law about one of her grandchildren who are in the ICU (Intensive Care Unit). She was filling me in on the details that have happened the last couple of days—spinal tap, surgery to put in a pic line that feeds the little one through a small tube, pneumonia, lung collapse…

It was heart wrenching to imagine this little child that was born not quite a week ago, going through such pain. Then I envisioned her mother (my sister-in-law), the new mother of triplets and the pain I know she is going through, feeling like she isn’t bonding to this child, while the others are doing well, wondering what she is doing wrong as a mother, looking at the nurses with envy as they speak to her baby and having thoughts of her baby possibly dying…

Then my thoughts went to my mother-in-law who had lost two sets of twins after they had been born. I asked my mother-in-law how she was doing. She broke down and said, “We are trying to be positive. It is hard, but Lacey (her daughter) doesn’t want to be alone and neither do I, so we are sticking together through this. Everything will be alright.”

She was holding on to hope and faith, like any good mother, knowing in the back of her mind it is essentially not up to her. That anything can and will happen. She had been there many times.

Yesterday my sister-in-law was having an especially tough day, so I sent her a letter and some inspiring quotes to post around her house to help her remember she is not alone and that this experience is a time for growth, hope and faith. One of the images was the one above–I am fearfully and wonderfully made.

When I saw this image it reminded me of the humility we need to have through life. Every day, every moment is a gift that we are given. Life experiences may be scary or cause us to be fearful, but through those moments we learn so much. Through these experiences we learn the important things like faith, hope, true love, empathy, gratitude, sacrifice, etc. We learn the lessons our soul seeks to devour. It is through these faith building moments that we know we are not alone and that God is there to hold our hands. That fear can turn to an ah-filled wonder and that is where we find grace and humility.

I want to send her my best wishes and blessings. Please send her a blessing if you have a moment. Thank you.

Blessings to you today.  -Heather

Believe in the LOVE that surrounds you

Image“Faith is taking the first step even when you can’t see the whole staircase.”  -Martin Luther King Jr.

Belief, Faith, Divine timing, Destiny…there are many words that describe the feelings you need when something shakes your world. I call it, “A Faith building step.”

My husband just found out last week that his company is being sold and there is not a position for him. Moments like this can get a little scary for anyone, but I have a little history with my husband in a similar situation and it took him to a dark edge that nearly took his life, so it does rattle me a bit. But, I remembered a story about a couple who had just lost their job & they decided to share in a toast to the future and not tell their families. I decided to take that route. It makes sense to not want the energy of people worried, concerned and asking you if you’ll be okay. Who wants that?? So, we are stepping out into the unknown, having faith that there are doors that will open and staircases that will appear.

It is in moments like these that we have the true opportunity to grow, to let go of our ego, our must have’s, our spending habits, our stability and hold to the hope of something greater. Something greater than us all, that has the ability to inspire decisions, to guide and direct, to teach something necessary, to help us learn about ourselves on a deeper level. It is our choice to look at the good with the bad and make the most of our journey. I am looking at this opportunity as a new adventure, possible places that will be filled with new experiences, new friends, new changes. Change can be hard, but it helps us grow and in any growth we learn to have a little more faith, to believe in divine coincidences, to trust that everything will be exactly what we need.

Here is a beautiful story that perfectly illustrates our need to believe and have faith in the designer of our lives…

On a remote airstrip almost a half century ago, a small plane was preparing to taxi into position for takeoff. An unexpected storm system was approaching with heavy rain and gusty winds. It had already started raining and the wind was picking up. Suddenly, a lone figure, with his coat over his head in a futile attempt to keep dry, ran from the terminal to the plane, his silhouette outline by lightning, the wind now almost tearing his coat from his grasp. Upon seeing the man on the runway the surprised pilot shut down the twin engines and opened the door. The man came on board, had a rather heated exchange with the pilot, and then turned to the eight passengers. “My name is Walter Beech,” he said, “I am the designer of this airplane and I supervised its construction. I know what it can do and what it can’t do. This plane is not designed for weather this severe and I urge you to get off with me now. I know your destinations are important and this represents an inconvenience, but please, don’t remain on the plane.”

The pilot interrupted angrily. “I have been flying this aircraft for years and I, too, know what it can do and what it can’t do. If we avoid further delay we can get ahead of this storm. I urge you to stay on board. I will get you to your destinations.”

One woman stood and walked forward to get off the plane with Walter Beech. The two watched as the plane left the ground, climbing several hundred feet. Then what began as a slow roll quickly became an ugly, uncontrollable spin as the aircraft fell from the sky. All aboard were lost.

The woman standing with Walter Beech was Eleanor Roosevelt, wife of the President of the United States. She would later tell reporters, “I felt it wise to take advice of the designer and builder of the airplane.”

God always sees clearly what is best for us. But there will always be options. There will bo those other voices enticing us down paths that may bring immediate gratification, but that may ultimately bring sadness and despair. I urge you to listen to God’s advice. He’s the designer, the only one who can get you to where you’re supposed to be. -Dan Stuecher (When I’m needing a fresh Start, pg 78)

 
I know this faith building step in our lives will take us to a new destination where we need to be. It may be uncomfortable, may be filled with ups and downs, but in the end, I am walking with a knowing that it is just what we need at this moment in our lives.
This knowing helps me feel that there is always a loving guidance that surrounds us.
I will keep you posted on our journey ahead. Wish us blessings, guidance and love. Thank you.
Best wishes in all you do today.  -Heather