Sunday, April 30

Sunday Scribblings ~ Why I live where I live

Boho at home, Canon Digital Rebel XT

If I tell you the story of why I live where I live, in reality, it is the story of my husband and me.

Carsten (who wasn't my husband at the time) lured me here with his good looks, charm, gorgeous home and the offer to have the upstairs loft as my very own bedroom/studio so that I wouldn't freak out moving across California for the love of a man. Because Boho doesn't do stuff like that. ;-)

I am originally from the San Francisco Bay Area. I am a true blue, born and bred Northern Cali girl in every sense of the word. I was living in Berkeley when the techie company (did I tell you I was a nerd? gkgirl will like that) I was working for was bought out and the majority of us were laid off. I decided to take advantage of my sweet severance package and move to Santa Barbara. Throughout my twenties I had moved every few years from city to city...so, the few years were up and I was feeling quite antsy for a new experience.

I rented a garage turned studio room from a fabulous young married couple. We knew within the first few minutes of me interviewing for the room that a bond was solidified and I was a good fit (laughing over lemonade). The husband (Rob) was very involved in the Volleyball community and they had a plethora of friends my age. I could see his wheels turning once he discovered I was single and I immediately said to them..."please do not set me up!".

I explained that I was there to rediscover me again. I was there for a spiritual experience, for healing, to play, to create, to just "be"...not to find true love.

Little did I know that Rob would call his best friend in San Diego a few minutes after I left the interview and say on his answering machine..."Carsten, dude...you better get up here because I just rented our room to your future wife!"

I did not hear of this, of course, until a while after Carsten and I actually met. It was Rob's plan to keep it from me since I was so adamant about him not setting me up with his friends.

When Carsten heard the message, he just laughed and rolled his eyes and didn't take it seriously. I am thankful for that...I needed time.

During the next four months, I worked at a cafe, befriended a few Scottish gals that were there for the Summer and played on the beach, submerged myself into yoga and enjoyed my new life.

I had one absolutely crazy night out in good ol' Santa Barbaree. The Scottish gals took me out...and you KNOW how the Scottish love to drink. Well, needless to say, we were out until all hours of the evening, then morning. Bar after bar...dancing on stages, kissing a few boys and skipping down the cobblestone streets. I stumbled into my room at about 5am in the morning.

A few hours later, I dragged my sorry butt out of my bed to walk through the house for the bathroom and as soon as I opened my door, which leads into the kitchen, guess who was standing there??? You guessed it...Mr. Carsten Kroon.

Now ladies. Think about this. I am hung over, parched mouth, hair a ball of knots and sticking out all over the place, traces of mascara down my eyes. Boxers twisted around my waist, tank top strap falling off my shoulder. You know that look. The morning after a wild evening with the girls and all you want is a huge glass of water, advil and to lay in bed all day.

I blinked my eyes a few times to focus on what was in front of me and I see this tall, handsome man (delicious, actually) and out of his jolly mouth comes..."There she is!!!" with the cutest smile in the Universe.

He later told me, at that moment when I walked into the kitchen...he had a warm feeling wash over him and he knew I was the one.

He's crazy. But that is one of the many reasons why I love him.

So, the next few months we fell truly madly deeply in love. During that first conversation in the kitchen, I forgot about the bathroom and how dreadful I must have looked. I just remember how damn funny he was that early in the morning and he found me funny as well. I leaned up against the counter with the coffee in my hands that he handed me and we shared our stories while Ali (Rob's wife) beamed watching us.

I decided to move out here because as I had said in an earlier post, the few long term relationships I previously had were long distance. I wanted as much normalcy as possible this time. I applied for a design school out here, got accepted, packed my bags and moved further down the coast...much, much further.

He had built a loft upstairs in his condo a while back. He told me that he wasn't sure why he had built it when he did but when he met me, he understood the reason.

So here we are...four years later. Married. And the loft is no longer my bedroom but my art studio and his workspace for Fractal Tree.

Good ol' Rob actually did set us up despite my plea not to. This is a great joke that will be told for years on end.

Now you know our story. Now you know why I live where I live. Oh...and the glorious beaches and tres cool weather help too. ;)

Read other yummy Sunday Scribblings here.

Saturday, April 29

Break those Chains

glass & chain on tree at the Kroon homestead, Canon Digital Rebel XT

Something transpired in yoga class yesterday that I felt resonated with so much of what I shared in my last post.

The lights were dim, Zen relaxation music softly in the background, yoga mats arranged messily around the room, circling our yoga instructor who stood in the middle on the hardwood floor.

As we all laid flat on our backs with our knees up, listening intently to our instructions on a back bend with the help of blocks, her words began to crack and she burst into tears and said;

"I am so sorry; I am going through a really stressful time in my life."

She then put her hands to her face, wiped her tears and tried to continue with her instruction, through her sobs.

At first we all laid there on our backs, starring at the ceiling in a bit of shock. Then tears started to flow down the sides of my temples and I felt a huge lump in my stomach. I immediately felt like I was her, inside her body and her heart. I felt her sorrow, I felt her embarrassment, I felt her fear. That is what happens with an empath (More on that subject later since so many of you inquired a few posts ago).

Out of about 20 students in her class, just two of us sat up. I was sitting there, looking at her wide eyed, with my tears and empathy and another woman had a scowl on her face and fists to the floor. The other women said in exasperation;

"Please take a few minutes outside because I cannot do yoga if you're upset."

Both the instructor and I had a look of shock on our face. This other woman obviously was in a place of self centeredness. She was there for herself and the sobs of our beautiful instructor was not going to move through that.

Before our instructor walked out the door, she walked over near me on her way out the door to pick up an extra block and strap that were haphazardly in an empty space. She bent down to pick them up and looked up over at me. Her face softened and I saw that she was immediately aware that I was okay with her breaking down. I believed in it. I welcomed it.

I whispered to her; "You are so brave...please stay" and smiled.

She warmly smiled back, took a deep breath, put the items away in their shelves while wiping her tears with her sleeve and walked back into the middle of our room. She sat down on her mat, took another deep breath, glanced around the classroom with a bit of a giggle and continued her instruction with a shaky voice. I saw that her fear had dissipated and as the hour ticked on, her strength resurfaced.

While pondering that other woman's fear based response, it reminded me that perhaps not every woman sees it. That there are still women out there in this world, unbeknownst to them, that accept the chains, the expectations, the rules of how us women cannot show weakness in order to be equal to men.

But they don't see it like we do, do they? That opening up, spilling, unfolding, releasing, acknowledging, speaking our truths, is actually strength, not weakness and full of bravery.

We have much work to be done, creative sisters.

Let's continue to help break those chains.

Thursday, April 27

Poetry Thursday - All Women are Healers

carey in tree pose, canon digital rebel xt

My beautiful friend Carey and I went on a long hike today under the gray overcast clouds and into the bright green bushes.

Our time together had many shifts. First light hearted, then deep, then raw down into our inner's...back to light hearted again. Hugs of encouragement, tears flowing with empathy and laughter spilling for release at the end of it all.

Invoking Sisterhood.

When I arrived home, muscles well stretched and tired, I felt inspired to open up my old We'Moon Calendar book (2002).

I found it so apropos that I stumbled upon the poem that I did. The poem that I will share with all of you.

It is my big sister Darlene's birthday today. She has suffered with a serious illness for over 15 years now. Most recently, she was put on a new medication that put an end to her suffering. It is enormous. Enormous for her...enormous for all of us to see her true self come back to life (I write this with tears). I see her spilling with energy, brilliance and grace. She has connected with my blogging sisterhood without you knowing and I believe this is also part of her healing.

My mind also drifts to other's friends in this blogging community as of late that are very ill and I think of those that are recently grieving for loved ones lost.

All of this, coupled with the sisterhood bonding I had with Carey today lead me to this poem. I found such power and warrior~ness in the poet's words. It is obvious that this poem is about breast cancer but I believe this message can relate to all illnesses...including those of emotional heart.

That when we gather together as women torn of the heart or body, we can move mountains and help heal one another.

All women are healers.


Mama, I Tell You the Mountains are Moving!

The women are coming together – by tens, by hundreds
out of the hospital beds, off the X-ray tables
bald-headed women, one breasted women
with bodies scarred and carved, picked with poison to attack
the poison they breathed/they ate/their children sucked.
they are talking talking talking their stories
they are holding each other sobbing, they are beating the drums
they are drumming pounding drumming
they are laughing fiercely to be living
living and fierce, and together.

And mama, the breasted mountains are shaking.
I knew, when you lay broken and moaning
your chest flattened and stitched – brain, bone, lung on fire
I knew that someday the flaming women would erupt
someday they would drum the bedrock into motion
they would fault the poisonmakers, find each other with cadence
of love and fury. You would have loved to be among them, Mama.
I see you, and an army of your flat-chested ghost sisters
pounding pounding on the mantle of the world,
the drumskin is tight and thin, the living women match you
beat for beat – no wonder the cliffs are trembling.

I need not tell you, Mama, that the mountains are moving.

~ Bethroot Gwynn

Wednesday, April 26

A Ghost in the House

During my time at the Kroon homestead in Ontario, Canada there was a Ghost in the house.

I could hear her light footsteps across the wooden floors at night while I faded in and out of sleep. During the day I would get a glimpse of something white running in and around the trees.

While we gathered around the table at meals, I could feel something touching my knee and hear a whimper in the air.

One day, I went outside and the Ghost walked in front of me and gazed deeply into my eyes. I asked it to show me what she wanted to around the property and she turned around and guided me. I followed her footsteps, in and out of trees, around Jon-Erik's (Carsten's older brother) natural art sculptures and his pottery kiln. I was lead down to the pond where a swing hangs on a thick tree branch. Then lead to an old cabin that was built for Carsten to stay in when he got older. On and on we walked as she introduced me to the land where she roams.

Meet Ghost. Jon-Erik's companion, his dog, his best friend:

Ghost, Canon Digital Rebel, XT

Jon-Erik and his father went to a place one day long ago where people throw out their garbage (what we used to call a dump growing up). They were rummaging through this garbage to find unique objects to use for art. Suddenly, a white little puppy came running up to Jon-Erik with it's tongue hanging out and its tail wagging wildly with glee. They immediately noticed something alarming. The puppy was covered in blood and the bottom part of her jaw was loose and hanging from her mouth which was covered in maggots. It was clear that she had been shot. Someone wanted her dead and perhaps thought the job was done but she didn't die. She survived and was very much alive despite her trauma. She was jumping and giddy as if everything was perfectly normal. So, Jon-Erik took her to the local vet where she had surgery and was fixed up as much as possible, leaving half of her bottom jaw bone gone (hence no place for her tongue to hide and the reason why it is always dangling outside of her mouth).

To the Vet and the town, Ghost was an instant hero. An article was written about her in the local newspaper. She even won an award for outstanding bravery. She was put up in a nice hotel and was honored at a ceremony, along with a few other outstanding animals. One was a cat that had saved a woman from a burning house.

Following the ceremony, Jon-Erik took her home as his own and now she is grown and the sweetest dog I have ever met.

Jon-Erik Kroon & Ghost, Canon Digital Rebel, XT

Perhaps because she went through so much with her previous owner, she is so grateful for any type of love and attention that is given to her. We showered her with love and kisses and food and snuggles.

I often worried about her tongue getting so dry constantly outside of her mouth but then remembered, she has been like this all of her life and it was all she knew. I felt relieved when I would see her drinking water out of a bowl, moistening her parched tongue.

At times I would forget that she wasn't a human. I knew she understood me when I spoke to her...especially on our walk together while she guided me through the woods.

On our last night, she hopped up on our bed and cuddled beside Carsten. Jon-Erik told us the next morning that she has never done this before, she has only slept with him. It was her way of saying goodbye. How did she know we were leaving? I was fortunate enough to spoon her in the morning. ;)

Ghostie & Boho resting, Canon Digital Rebel, XT

My next few posts will be about the art sculptures Ghost and I found during our walk.

She is a very special being. An angel...a Ghost.

Tuesday, April 25

self portrait tuesday

boho's eye, canon digital rebel xt

"Look at everything as though you were seeing it for the first time or the last time. Then your time on earth will be filled with glory." ~ Betty Smith

Monday, April 24

Walk with Mother Nature

plum tree blossom, canon digital rebel xt

Towards the end of our time in Canada, Carsten, Jon-Erik (his brother) and I went on a long leisurely walk around the Kroon homestead. Their house where they were raised sits on about 10 acres of land. On this land there is a peaceful pond snuggled in between blankets of green grass. Surrounding the pond are whimsical, wispy willow trees and blossoming plum trees. I watched the willow trees throughout my time there. I watched them gently sway back and forth in the breeze while their yellowish flowery branches swirled softly like a ballerina's arms. During the dance, I could hear the rustling of leaves and the sweet hum of life in the air.

Behind the house lies a bridge over a creek which leads to a dock that sits on a river. Here is where my husband hung a hammock on weathered wooden posts many of days in his youth to read a book or to simply fall asleep to birds singing and water rippling. Here is where the family gathers to sip tea in the cool crisp morning or to gaze at the stars and the moonlight dancing on the water. Here is where the three of us communed together after a few hours of paying attention to Mother Nature on our walk, showing our gratitude for Her lovely gifts.

During the walk, I stayed behind the boys, knowing they needed this time to bond and knowing I needed this time to slowly absorb what was new to me and familiar to them. I stopped many times as they walked ahead to capture the beauty with my camera. I will share my pictures with you as the days go by...of all the treasures I found. It was fun to hear how when they spoke to one another, it always started with..."oh, little brother..." or..."so, big brother".

Ahhh...the bohemian city boy and the hippie country boy:

Carsten, Sweet Doggie & Jon-Erik

Jon-Erik's sweet dog joined us. The remarkable story about this dog, I will share yet another day.

Until then...be inspired to take a walk with Mother Nature.

Saturday, April 22

Someone else's shoes

Rubber boots at the Kroon homestead in Ontario, Canada ~ Canon Digital Rebel XT

We returned home to the USA quite late last night.

As we stumbled through our door dragging heavy luggage on the ground with bags strung diagonally across shoulders, our cats gracefully pounced toward us and greeted us with happy meows.

Ahhh...home sweet home. The familiar surroundings, the smells, the comfort of it all.

This past week was spent surrounding Carsten's brother with support and love through a challenging transition on his life journey. With each day, I grew to know his brother on a deeper level and this time spent with him definitely solidified our relationship. Living so far away from one another, it has been challenging to connect but I left feeling as though I truly had a new older brother in my life.

During the hours spent with the three of us communing together, we gently opened up the door for him to spill all that is transpiring in his head and heart. This process really brought me out of my own headspace for a few days.

An unexpected blessing.

If you reflect back on the times that you communed in such a way to comfort a dear one's wounded heart, didn't you find that in helping them heal, your own heart also felt a bit healed?

I think there is so much power in standing in someone else's shoes for a time being. It awakens you into a bigger awareness of life outside of your own personal Universe...especially when you feel so submerged into it.

This grand perspective created a sense of hope as I could see the unfolding of his journey all making sense, even if he couldn't as of yet. It made me realize that the unfolding of my own journey will all make sense in the end...even if I don't see it now and others do.

In helping him rediscover his strength, I rediscovered even more of mine.

Interesting how I found part of my way in someone else's shoes.

Saturday, April 15

Beanies to Spill...

pottery love, canon digital rebel xt

Carsten and I just returned home from breaking bread with close friends. I am basking in the energy that flows between the four of us (another couple). There is a rare feeling of harmony whenever we gather. An ease of conversation that builds from story to story where much laughter spills over in abundance into a sweet level of comfort. Even in our silences.

I found myself wishing my sisterhood could be there to join in but then remembered I now have something to share before I lay my head down to visit dream land.

I always choose to end my evening with checking in with my soul sisters (that would be you)...making sure all is well and then whisper my wishes for the sweetness of dreams out into our Universe.

Our lovely and tres cool Brit requested that I spill the beans. 10 beans was it? Hmmm...a challenge this late in the evening if I choose to accept it? Well I do accept, oh brilliant one...so here goes:

Here are 10 beanies that I am spilling...

1. I love the smell of clove cigarettes.

2. I have a really soft voice. Sometimes, people cannot even hear it when I speak. I am learning how to project down from my belly and try to not get offended by hearing..."what???" from those that are listening.

3. I cannot digest gluten (wheat, rye oats & barley). I almost died as an infant until they discovered what I had at Stanford University Hospital. I was one in 50 in the United States to have it and once my parents changed my diet, I then was transformed from sickly skinny baby to healthy chubby baby.

4. I was in a mime/interpetive dance team in college.

5. I know American Sign Language.

6. I can be painfully shy or the life of the party - depending on my mood.

7. I am an empath.

8. I was a virgin until I was 24...after that, not so much. ;)

9. The few long term relationships I had (including my husband) were all long distance. I am pretty independant, so it worked for me.

10. I cry at least once a day...tears of joy or tears of sadness.

Bonus Beanie: I am a Virgo.

Well dear ones...my husband and I are off to Canada for a week to spend time with his brother. I will not have access to the world wide web (sorry Tim). When I return I will pour myself a huge mug of tea and catch up on all of your blessed bloggies.

Until then...I am tagging Letha, Thea, Liz and Pixie to spill your beanies!

I'll miss you....oh Divine Secrets of the Bloggie Sisterhood!


Thursday, April 13

Grateful Friday

Hands, Canon Digital Rebel XT

This is my first contribution to Grateful Friday. I am oozing gratefulness today...just oozing.

I am grateful for...

~ my gorgeous British pen-pal/frister beginning her journey into the bloggie sisterhood (please welcome her on her blog here).

~ this sweet womyn emailing me that i must listen to his music. She was right...he rocks.

~ putting a gallery of our fairy wedding pictures together.

~ finding the cutest fricken sweatshirt and i am not typically a sweatshirt kind of gal.

~ my sweet hubs being home for spring break.

~ browsing thru one of my dearest and besty friend's new online boutique full of the most gorgeous goods.

~ leonie's amazing pictures of goddesses on her blog the last few entries. they gave me goosebumps.

~ my big sis darlene feeling back to herself health wise...the giggling begins.

~ my beautiful niece angela dying her hair sultry black and resurfacing prettier than angelina jolie! *grin*

~ my camera, my camera, my camera!!

~ this blog entry picture of my fabulous fertility sister

~ my daily affirmations which have inspired me to love and embrace my body rather than blame it.

~ wearing these red shoes every day. for when i click them three times...i am brought to Oz.

~ for all the beautiful souls that reach out to me every day, and allow me to reach out to them through this medium. this sisterhood is other-worldly, isn't it?? i feel big, wonderful transitions in our lives approaching...and i am so grateful to have the opportunity to watch gently, from a distance.

Poetry Thursday

Pretty Cups, Canon Digital Rebel XT

Thought this poem was quite apropos being that we all wish to gather for drink and girl talk as of late:

I would rather drink than eat,
And though I superbly sup,
Food, I feel, can never beat
Delectation of the cup.

Wine it is that crowns the feast;
Fish and fowl and fancy meat
Are of my delight the least:
I would rather drink than eat.

Though no Puritan I be,
And have doubts of Kingdom Come,
With those fellows I agree
Who deplore the Demon Rum.
Gin and brandy I decline,
And I shy at whisky neat;
But give me rare vintage wine,--
Gad! I'd rather drink than eat.

Food surfeit is of the beast;
Wine is from the gods a gift.
All from prostitute to priest
Can attest to its uplift.
Green and garnet glows the vine;
Grapes grow plump in happy heat;
Gold and ruby winks the wine . . .
Come! Let's rather drink than eat.

~ Robert William Service

Wednesday, April 12

Kitty Love

amber watching, canon digital rebel xt

Kitty Love is...

Piling up the pillows so that my kitty can be high enough to watch the birdies in the trees outside of our bedroom window. She reminds me to watch, to listen, to pay attention to the movement and sound of nature outside of our walls.

Do you feel...do you hear the heartbeat of Mother~Nature surrounding you with this new Spring?

Tuesday, April 11

Self Portrait Tuesday ~ April Fool

me & my hats, canon digital rebel xt

"Hello...my name is Denise and I am a hat-oholic."

"Hi Denise!"


What are your addictions, your vices? See other April Fools here.

Monday, April 10

Girl Talk

mahogany me, canon digital rebel xt

I am just imagining all of you lovelies sitting in my living room, scattered throughout my couch, snuggled in our weathered brown leather chair, on top of silk pillows atop our hardwood floor, candles lit, Weepies in the background ~ and sipping red wine from about 3 or 4 bottles.

We are all divulging the inner of our days and I am sharing with you that today my hair colorist extraordinaire (and dear friend) and I collectively decided for me to go darker, with a hint of mahogany.

While she lathered thick chunks of hair with red goop, I sat on a chair facing her large window, which faced a harbor and part of what we call Little Italy.

Gorgeous, gorgeous view today during the whole process. This is the first time she did it in her home rather than the salon since we're trading now (a boho necklace for colored hair).

Once blow dried, I screamed..."I love it!" and felt super sexy driving home. Even more sexy when my husband practically purred when I walked upstairs.

But now...I am having that post hair color freak out. Is it too dark? Do I need more highlights? Does it make me look pale? Can you tell I look a little scared? ;-)

So I came to my sisterhood. Vain, vain post...I know...but we all have thoughts like this, admit it!! This is exactly what I would ask you if I had the pleasure of having you over for some girl talk.

Bring it on girls...speak your truth, and take another sip of wine while you're at it.

Sunday, April 9

Sunday Scribblings ~ Real Life

carsten laughing, Canon Digital Rebel XT

This weeks topic for Sunday Scribblings is "Real Life". If you're in the mood for some juicy writing, do visit here.

I have a sweet companion that inspires me to see real life through their eyes...or shall I say lens? I always bring it with me in tow and if I happen to rush out of the door without it, I feel a sense of loss as my day passes me by.

My camera has motivated me to watch more closely, to pay attention to moods, facial expressions, colors, shading, movement, conversation...LIFE, really.

Today, while I was starring at all of the buttons and knobs, my husband was walking up the steps to the loft, being a complete goof (as always). As he turned the corner to walk towards me, laughing (at his own joke) and just before I joined him in a fit of giggles, I moved my camera up to his face and pushed the button.

Well...lookie here! His fresh, beautiful, face of laughter (above). I see this every day...but now I am able to share it with others. This is my life. This is our life together, documented.

So, real life for me lately has been camera around neck, walking the streets, squatting down to a flower on the side of the road, laying flat with my belly on a cold, hardwood floor, being the one behind the scenes in a crowded room, waiting for a wave to crash up on a rock, dancing while snapping, anticipating the perfect lighting, one eye closed, one eye open, hands gently gripping...

capturing laughter, documenting real life.

Team Soda

team soda shirts ~ kodak ls753

Carsten and I decided this morning to get out into the sweet sunshine and play tennis today. Something we later agreed we need to do together more often. I am always hesitant to play a sport with my hubby because in the past, I have had a few VCB's (very competitive boyfriends).

I vividly remember cursing wars with a VCB after every forehand and backhand across the court. Carsten and I are never competitive with one another in regards to our creative abilities but I was concerned that it might start today, and that a hidden monster would surface with each sweet spot on his racquet.

So, I had an idea. I noticed he was wearing his vintage Dr. Pepper t-shirt. I ran upstairs to put my matching one on (although, mine was diet rite). When I came downstairs I said..."See? Now we're on the same team!"

We laughed.

I know...completely geeked but I am convinced the subliminal message in the matching tees worked. It evolved into a time of encouraging one another, having FUN (go figure) and flirting.

Go Team Soda!

Friday, April 7

Today in my Loft...

Bohemian Girl Designs, Carved Carnelian Pendant ~ Canon Digital Rebel XT

Me ~ creating
Her ~ singing
Him ~ typing
Gems ~ tumbling
Wire ~ wrapping
Kitties ~ napping
Necklace ~ evolving.

Bohemian Girl Designs, Carved Carnelian Pendant ~ Canon Digital Rebel XT


my altar, canon digital rebel XT

Dear sisters,

I thought about sending an individual email to all the lovely souls who reached out to me and share how humbled I have been by your sweet hearts, your gentle words, your affirmations, your prayers.

I then realized I wanted to thank you collectively, through this medium that brought us all together into this tribe, into this circle which gathers when one needs lifting up and gathers when one desires to celebrate as a whole.

Today, rather than gripped with fear, my heart is held with peace. Held by your loving arms and words of wisdom.

I wanted to share what transpired yesterday…what shifted my heart, what cleansed me and has allowed healing to begin:

Late morning, I turned the lights low in my loft.

I gathered all of the tea lights and candles I could find and placed them in a medium sized circle on my hardwood floor.

I then placed one plant at the head of the circle (the dish that the plant sits on has crystals and a tiny happy Buddha surrounding the pot).

I laid my orange yoga mat in the middle of the circle.

I played Native American flute music (soft, slow, peaceful sound).

I burned some sage and walked with the smoke all over the room, and moved it over the circle I had just created and then moved it over the front of my body, mainly over my reproductive organs, slowly...up and down, up and down the front of my body over my loose clothing.

Finally, I sat on my mat and waited, with my eyes closed, for words to come to me
and this is what I began to say softly, out loud while I placed my hands over my ovaries:

"I love you,
I cherish you,
you are beautiful and
perfect just as you are...

You are fertile,
abundant and
perfect just as you are...

You are not alone,
we are in this together,
I believe in you
I have faith in you
you are capable of bringing
life into me,
and you are perfect, just as you are."

I said this over and over as the tears started to flow. I felt my fear and anger towards my reproductive organs slowly melt away and then I began to feel empathy towards them. Them... meaning my ovaries, my antral follicles, my fallopian tubes, my uterus.

I have spoken negative words about them out loud or in my mind for so many months. I haven't really, truly believed in them…even if I tried to convince myself that I had lately.

Then during this exercise, I actually felt their pain from my disbelief. The pain that one would feel if a loved one had told you that you were a failure, that you are not worthy. When those words are spoken to a person, self esteem is crushed and sometimes, you begin to believe it.

My heart went out to my feminine organs and in my own way, I transformed those negative thoughts into those of love, acceptance and I felt this warm pulsing down on my belly. I suppose it was a healing taking place.

A healing for them.
A healing for me.

I felt how they craved this acceptance, this love, this surrender to all they are capable of.

Coming out of this exercise, I didn’t feel completely healed but I felt lighter, nonetheless. My anxiety and all other negative emotions subsided a bit. I noticed my mind shifting to loving thoughts rather than hateful ones towards my body. I know this shift is going to take time and I am not rushing but am slowly embracing.

I imagined my reproductive organs as my friends and loved ones. How would I speak to them, how would I treat them, how would I nurture them?

This brought on a gentle shift of attitude for me. I was treating them as an enemy. Even if it wasn't obvious to others on the outside..within my inner self, I was treating them badly with a plethora of negative thoughts and images.

I then put lime green post-it notes on my mirrors in my loft and bathroom:

"stay positive"

…and these are what remind me of the commitment I have made to them.

Dear sisterhood...I believe it was your circling around me that helped me find these words, these images because my own voice had been stiffled by fear.

So I thank you with all that is within me for gathering lovely goddesses…for gathering…for gathering.

Bless your beautiful hearts.

Thursday, April 6

Update: Poppies of Hope

beautiful poppies, kodak ls753

the sweet, inspiring La Vie En Rose gave me strength just now to speak my truth by her comment she left on last nights post just now.

i feel encouraged to come here to this space again this morning...to be brave and ask for comfort from my sisterhood.

after i wrote my post last night, i went to bed and suddenly felt gripped with fear. my heart started racing and tears streamed down my face. i tried to take it all in with slow, deep breaths, to calm myself.

i couldn't sleep well...and when i did, i had dreams filled with fear and frustration of all sorts.

i was in such a peaceful headspace last night writing my post. interesting how quickly you can move through a peaceful headspace to a scary one.

so today i am walking around aimlessly, cleaning my loft, trying to focus with my heart racing and feeling full of anxiety.

i am preparing to clear my space for my affirmations. but i am coming here first to seek some comfort from you. any words of wisdom, or just simply love and encouragement. i am reaching out my hand for my sisters to lift me up and to hand me poppies of hope.

i need a quiet day of no talking and just meditating but i will come back to this solstice soon.

and i am still wearing Amy's red shoes. they worked for Dorothy in Oz, they'll work for me, right?

Oasis in the end...

lake near our home, kodak ls753

Today we met with a true~blue fertility specialist.

Not a doctor who claims to know a lot about fertility...but a bonefide - dedicated his whole medical practice to helping families achieve their dream of a child - specialist.

I walked into the calmly lit, soothing atmosphere and was greeted with the warmest smiles by the nurses and instantly felt a tightness in my body release.

I've been so guarded throughout this whole process. I feel like I have fought long and hard to be truly heard or to feel of any importance with doctors throughout this journey. So of course, I walk in prepared to put my defenses up.

Well in this space...I found my fists unfolding and my lungs taking in a deep cleansing breath.


There was instant chemistry between the three of us (me, hubs and the doc).

We sat together around a table as my husband and I spilled our 18 month journey to kind blue eyes and sincere listening ears.

This time I felt brave.
I felt cared for.
I felt important.
I felt together.
I had clarity.
I was in touch...with me.
Carsten was in touch...with him.
With us.

There was deep belly laughter between us all which relieved the scary bits, and there were some scary bits.

Bits that I held onto with a bite in my lip not wanting to allow the tears to fall. I felt safe... but not that safe to let it go in front of our doctor. This relationship will take time.

I was quiet on our way to the car. When we sat in, I put on the music loudly and put the car quickly in reverse and felt my husband gently put his hand on my arm... "we can't leave this parking lot until we talk about what's on your mind."

I looked at him and the tears flowed. He does indeed know me well. I was in running mode and he was gently asking me to slow down and sit with it.

He felt it important to review all the positives that were given to us because I, of course, was dwelling on the negative.

It carried me until a bit later in the evening when I did what I always do as an information geek which was to do more research on the internet and I found more scary bits.

My husband was my saving grace once more.

Together, we wrote down all of the glorious things that were said to me today about my body. He then found some positive bits on the internet to sooth what I had found.

I then put a post-it note on my bathroom mirror "Stay Positive" and one on my bedroom mirror..."I love my Ovaries".

Tomorrow I will begin a daily affirmation meditative ritual:

Burn incense
Burn sage
Lights down low
Candles lit...
and speak out loud loving thoughts towards my reproductive self.

So, from belly laughs to tears to remembering to breathe...

I am moving thru the scary bits and trying to embrace the positive. Much like the picture above, there will be...there must be an oasis in the end.

a sincere thank you to my dear sister thru this journey, Andrea...for her bravery today in her post and for helping to ground me before meeting our baby maker. *smile*

Wednesday, April 5

Big Sis

my big sis, photo by robin nations

She is gorgeous.
She is sweet.
She loves kissing,
my little feet!
(had to do that in response to her blog comment on my shoe post,
sorry for the sister cheese)

She is my big sister Darlene (also knows as B/Sis on my comments).

Scrumptious thoughts on our rare sister~relationship have been swirling around in my heart lately.

She's my rock. Our relationship has never wavered and if there was ever a time of concern, we've always created a safe space to come and spill, with an attitude of love and trust.

She has been through so much throughout her life and has continued to be so solid, wise and stoic during the storms. Because of this, many of those that surround her feel she may not need much, since she is so entirely strong. But even through her strength, there is much tenderness and I have always seen and felt this, therefore, we are extremely close.

Whenever there has been a huge tragedy in my life, she has taken me under her wing:

When my first love and I broke up, I cried on her lap, while she stroked my hair.

I went through a sliding glass door, she picked me up from the emergency room and took care of me for a few weeks.

When I was in a bad car accident; she took me in for over a month.

When I was living in Texas for a few years and my boyfriend and I broke up, she flew hundreds of miles to stay with me and we painted my apartment and furniture. So healing.

When I was living in a new city after a huge heartache, she stayed with me in my sweet Berkeley cottage to light candles, talk, listen to music, go to sushi and watch the tiny spec of the golden gate bridge from my window.

There really is so much more.

darlene at my wedding

What I cherish is that even though I am 10 years younger, she still comes to me for advice and comfort. One of the curses of being the baby of the family is that it can be difficult for others to see me outside of the "little girl" box. I love how Darlene has been watching and listening to my growth and truly sees me as a woman and treats me like one.

I love that even though we are both artists, there is no competition (as there usually is between siblings) but we encourage one another with complete glee.

I could actually write a novel about her but I will end with this. Not only is her divine beauty classic but her heart is made up of the rarest of jewels.

I am just basking in our relationship.

Thank you Dar, for reading my blog, for being the perfect listener about our fertility journey and allowing me to be there for you too...which I know doesn't come easy and I feel so, so honored.

I love you, sister sledge.

Tuesday, April 4


boho percolating, kodak ls753 & photoshop fun

something is transpiring
an energy shift of sorts
a welling within of anticipation
a sunrise pushing aside the clouds

it feels so close
around the corner
on my doorstep
ever so gently
but knocking, nonetheless

a dear friend of mine
used the word "percolating"
to describe this movement
in me

yes...this is exactly what it feels

love, creativity, trust, spirit, hope,
magic, faith, risk

a new confidence

inside of me
sifting through the

into the light



Sunday, April 2

Amy's Precious Shoes

my new earth shoes, kodak ls753

From her sweet little feet to my sweet little feet. Here they are, as comfy and as perfect as can be. These will now become my most blessed shoes. Not only because they are so fricken adorable, but because for a while they were worn by this precious soul...whom is a new dear friend of mine.

Her feet were too bony for them, so she sent me an email asking me what size shoe I wore since I practically drooled all over the picture of them on her blog the other day. And guess what...we have the same size feet (among other kindred things).

Thank goodness my feet are nice and chubs...so there are no bones being suffocated by the darling buckles! I know my sister Darlene just read that and started laughing because she used to tell me I had "Barney Rubble" feet growing up. Which, those of you who watched the Flintstones know that Barney's feet were wide and f-a-t. Mmhmm...only a sister could get away with that. *smile*

amy's marvelous package, kodak ls753

Amy also sent me a treasure trove of handmade, homemade and herbal goodies. My eyes welled up with tears as I first opened the box and the smell of lavender drifted up to my nose. Usually when I open a package, I excitedly race through each little gift, crazed with anticipation but this time, I took a deep breath, put on The Weepies (because she loves them as well) and gently unfolded each offering of friendship. I am learning to slow down in my life with such things and really, really marinate in them.

So, with each sweet gift, a tear was wiped and loving words about this beautiful soul was spoken out loud into the herbal scented air (with The Weepies in agreement).

This was the first post I read of hers and my comments inspired her to connect with me. Her red braids reminded me of one of my favorite characters Anne of Green Gables and then later, in getting to know more of her inner, I found that her spirit reminded me of Anne's as well.

Mmmm...a written "field guide" to my box, a fabulous CD, all sorts of teas, soap facial mask, RED SHOES, lavender chocolate, caribou antler buttons, homemade marvelous healing salve, essential oil, Ganesha figure (happy elephant - a remover of obstacles) and last but not least MELTED SNOW FROM ALASKA! Isn't that the cutest???


Thank you, dear Amy. How this is so very healing to me. Each gift was so well thought out by you and yes...perfect, just perfect for what I need right now. This touched me more than I can possibly put into words here in this space...but you know...you know.