Posted by on Jun 26, 2012 in Aging, Authenticity, Family, Food and Drink, Gifts, Love, Self worth, Wholehearted | 1 comment

During the past decade and a half I have grown emotionally and spiritually in ways I never would have foreseen. An inextricable foundation for this blossoming has been practicing extreme self care. I shifted from a place of believing that taking care of myself was selfish and silly to a life affirming empowering practice of giving to me as a reflection of how deeply I love and approve of myself. The chasm I crossed was huge, Grand Canyonish. And so the summer days leading up to my birthday were planned around being unplugged from my purple 'puter, filled with family and friends and surrounded by delectable food, laughter, and joy. Celebrating my birthday is all about being loved, and I am blessed to be loved in so many ways by so many precious people. Then the rain started and didn't stop—it still hasn't stopped. And I learned again (wash, rinse, repeat) the grace of flexibility and spontaneity as I canceled some plans due to weather and created new ones on the spot. I experienced the truth of my coach's wise words, Whatever is good and right for you is almost always what is good and right for everyone involved. Every day Friday through Monday has been a unique celebration of my first breath and I am still reveling in the love. There are unfortunately no photos of Jeff and I at Crescent Beach huddled under our bent beach umbrella (the wind was that strong) waiting out the sudden downpours until we could sit back and read again. (I love you JS!) The ocean was wild and magnificent and my soul rose up in mirror image of nature as a force of action envisoining the endless possibilities awaiting me, in this, my forty-eighth year....

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Christmas without Mom

Posted by on Jan 7, 2012 in Authenticity, Celebration, Challenges, Family, Gifts, Healing, Love, Spirituality, Wholehearted | 4 comments

My mom loved Christmas! She would hoard little treasures from yard sales and flea markets all year long and store them in a trunk to give to us at Christmas. Presents had to be distributed one at a time and in a certain order so we could all watch the recipient open and share their joy. 😉 In the early seventies she excitedly drug home her most exciting find and we assembled it in the living room: a garish silver artificial tree made of some sort of aluminum strips. Once the lights and decorations were on she added the final finishing touch by pouring white Styrofoam ‘peanuts’ over the top to simulate snow. At nine I was completely enchanted! Her enthusiastic giving continued even when she was seventy-nine. Mom became ill two days before Christmas last year and I transferred her to Hospice the day after Christmas. We stayed with her until she crossed over on January 7th. I’m sure we celebrated Christmas after that but I don’t recall it. And I know I must have taken the tree and decorations down and put her unopened presents away but I have no clear memory. So this year I wasn’t sure I wanted to celebrate Christmas. Did I want to put up the tree she and I found for five dollars at a thrift shop and we’ve used and loved the past seven years? We even considered traveling for the holidays. But I knew I wanted to be with Brin wherever we were and I knew Mom would not want me to give up Christmas. I gave the tree away to a neighborhood family and wished them many happy memories around it. Our family tradition since Brin was a toddler was to get a ‘free’ live tree on Christmas Eve bring it home and decorate it, have dinner, and then open presents. Oh about the ‘free’ tree—you know those empty lots near shopping centers that pop up after November strung with white light bulbs and cut live trees lined up along a mesh fence? Well this free tree ritual began literally because in those days we could not afford to buy a tree! My parents and sister and brother-in-loveand even our neighbors always joined us. We practiced this tradition for over a decade into Brin’s teens and well after I moved on from working Christmas Day at a movie theatre and could afford to buy a tree! And over the years most of those loved ones for one reason or another join us now only in Spirit. This year we reinstated the tradition which Brin explained to her boyfriend and we learned she never realized it started because we were broke—we all found this quite hilarious! Brin cooked for us Christmas Eve at our house and Jeff and I went out to look for a tree. Our little town used to have them everywhere but this year we couldn’t locate even one. Sigh. Soooo, Brin’s three foot tall purple pre-lit artificial tree would have to grow on me. I set it up on a table in the living room window and dug out the Christmas decorations brought in from the shed but I could only find the bulbs mom and Jeff and I had painted together last year. Oh it was a brilliant idea but a bigger project than I had anticipated as it was too challenging for her physically. But we muddled through and had a great time. We gave each of her caretakers and family and friends a special bulb to remember us and this Christmas.  They actually...

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Vugs to hugs

Posted by on Nov 9, 2011 in Authenticity, Creativity, Family, Gifts, Love, Wholehearted | 1 comment

My dear hubby really is a dear and dotes on me and my whims to an extreme. I'm not complaining mind you, I love the results. They go something like this; Honey, I have an idea to send friends a special momento of the AssistU Homecoming. He knows I love giving 'hands to hearts' gifts. He comments that's a great idea. I extrapoloate and say but it's something for you to make on the scroll saw. I smile sweetly and bat my eyelashes at him. Oh. Long pause and then always something like, a loud guffaw and then, Okay, what do you want me to make? Jeff has been my best friend and partner for twenty-eight years and we have made a life filled with love and adventure. He is always there for me. He always supports my work, my passions, my crazy ideas, my life—which is whole and complete because of us. ♥ I love you Jeff! (Oh, and happy birthday!) In case you're wondering what a 'vug' is I kinda coined it when I was in AssistU's Virtual Training Program instead of signing: Hugs, Laura I sent a virtual hug and wrote: Vugs, Laura. It stuck! So our slogan at Homecoming was "From vugs to hugs". Here's one of the signs he made this week which are winging their way to friends right now:     Tami shared hers on Facebook with the card I sent. 😉 Friends posted and said they wanted one, too! They are not painted or varnished so you can leave them natural wood or paint them yourself. You can place your order with Jeff via: neofab at cox dot net. Won't he be surprised to hear from you! <grin> I'm thinking a donation to your favorite charity in lieu of a payment. Whatcha think? Big...

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hands to heart gift

Posted by on Oct 25, 2011 in Creativity, Gifts, Inspiration, Wholehearted | 0 comments

I signed up for a flipbook class at Priceless Scrapbooks with my sis-in-love but there weren't enough participants so Bonnie made this beauty in the photos and I hope I'll be able to replicate something close. I filled it with photos of Sharon and Marina and sent it for Sharon's B'day this month. ♥ "It is the wise mother who gives her child roots and wings." "If you can imagine it you can achieve it." "We do not remember days…we remember moments." "Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul." ~Emily...

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Journaling joy

Posted by on Oct 18, 2011 in Books, Creativity, Gifts, Wholehearted | 1 comment

Here's the handmade (designed cut sewn everything) journal Lisa gave me when we met in San Diego! You can see more of Lisa's beautiful paper and ink creations at Rivertown Press. Lisa you are amazing—thank you again!   And here are my new fun instant scrapbooks, my SMASH journals, "For the moments and musings that stick"! I received both as gifts and love them, two different themes, thank you again Honoré and Lucy! I add everyhthing from movie ticket stubs to the tags off the top and pants I...

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Christmas in July

Posted by on Jul 12, 2011 in Creativity, Gifts, Inspiration | 0 comments

I joined Bonnie for a festive and fun card making class at Priceless on Sunday. We made four cards in about three hours. And now have templates to get a head start on Christmas cards. The card on the right is an adorable pouch for a packet of hot...

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