Saturday, October 31, 2009

Free Spirit Tip #5

Today, on Halloween, and EVERYDAY, do something that SCARES you!

Friday, October 30, 2009


The closer we get to the end of our present evolutionary stage, the more dysfunctional the ego becomes, in the same way that a caterpillar becomes dysfunctional just before it transforms into a butterfly. But the new consciousness is arising even as the old dissolves.
-Eckhart Tolle

Your Personal Reflection: What old thought patterns and behaviors are you ready to let dissolve? What new consciousness is arising in you?

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Too Cute Cap

Here's my latest knitted hat. I played around with the stitches and tried something new, which resulted in this really fun ridge effect. The hat is bumpy, lumpy, colorful and is the perfect size for a sweet little toddler. (fits 18-24 months)

Check here to see it on my Free Spirit Knits Etsy store.

Quite stylish on a pumpkin, too, would you say?

Your Personal Reflection: When have you tried something new and were happy with the results?

Monday, October 26, 2009

Celebrating Peace

To celebrate my mom's birthday this past weekend I took her to a Holly Near concert. Wow! I was so impressed. I've heard Holly's name throughout my childhood, as she has always been a source of inspiration to my mom. My mom discovered her in the 70's when she was in college. She has vivid memories of meeting a woman named Nancy - this cool, women's lib hippie, who didn't shave her legs. She introduced my sweet mom - an innocent, catholic girl from Des Moines, Iowa, to the powerful, empowering music, that activist, teacher and song-writer, Holly Near is known for. Hearing the message of independence and strength in Holly's music had a lasting impression for my mom.

So, what a fun experience for my mom to get to meet Holly, 30 plus years later, with her adult daughter. Holly is on tour with Emma's Revolution, a duo that reminds me of the Indigo Girls. Their harmonies give you goose bumps, their stories inspire you to take action, and these three women are sharing their folksy, musical talents in the name of PEACE.
I encourage you to take a listen to these incredible voices. Here are some YouTube links (listen to the lyrics! I Ain't Afraid, Gentle Angry People, We Believe in Peace, Fired Up) And remember, that you too, have a unique voice that needs to be heard. So awaken, arise and be willing to celebrate your courage, to honor your strength, and to do your part to be of service to others.

Thank you Holly, Emma's Revolution and mom for a memorable evening.

The following excerpt comes from Holly's biography:

I do not separate my music from my heart nor do I separate my ideas from my daily life. I open my self up to learning as much as I can about humanity and this mysterious life experience, but I do not relate to political work as a series of "causes." Moment by moment, I integrate what I learn into my personal life, personalizing my politics. It is from this personal place that I write my songs. -Holly Near

Your Personal Reflection: Are you OPEN to learning as much as possible, about yourself, and about life? How can you integrate what you learn each day, into your personal life, and how can you use what you learn to help others? Be at peace, now, and share that peace with all those you meet.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Let Your True Colors Shine Bright

The vibrant autumn leaves are absolutely magnificent this year. It's hard to keep my eyes on the road while I'm driving because on every block there is another tree to ooh and aah at.

I absolutely LOVE Autumn. The changing colors remind me to slow down, and appreciate nature's innate beauty. The falling leaves remind me that everything is impermanent. I'm reminded that we all have an inner beauty, our true colors, that need to come out and be seen. And just like the colorful trees, as our beauty shines bright, it will transform, change, and again, retreat to a place where it can rest and restore.

I find a pile of crunchy leaves completely irresistible. I have to get in there and crunch, scoop them up, toss them in the air and roll around. It's just fun. It reminds me of the simpler times, and that playful energy that comes naturally when you're a kid. I mean, seriously, what's more fun than jumping in a huge pile of freshly raked leaves?
Let's all stop, right now, and enjoy the beauty all around. Even if you live in an environment that doesn't have changing leaves, you can still stop, and see nature's great gifts. Just like the turning leaves, let's shine bright, feel the vibrancy that comes from being alive, and embrace the newness, and uncertainty that inevitably comes with change.

So get out there, jump, crunch, play, laugh and celebrate the changing YOU.
Your Personal Reflection:
Are you letting your true colors shine bright?
As we prepare for winter, this is a wonderful time to nurture your inner self. What self-care and personal wellness techniques can you invite into your life now?
Try this FREE guided meditation: Accepting Fear, Embracing Change

Like the falling leaves, what are you ready to let go of? Where will these new changes lead you?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Lolly Pop

Thanks to all of you who shared your name ideas for my funky pink and green felted scarf. Maddie is the winner with the name, "Lolly Pop!" Lolly Pop is looking for a good home. Check her out on my new Etsy shop. on the lookout for a little felted treat in the mail.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

It's All in a Name

Here's my most recent scarf. I originally started it with Lissa Rankin in mind. She's the creator of this cool company called, "Owning Pink". She offers great inspiration for women (and men) on living their fullest lives. After felting this crazy wool wrap, I remembered that Lissa lives in California, so she probably doesn't have much use for something so warm and woolly! So I've started a new pink scarf for her that's a little lighter and more cali-friendly.

This thing is warm, really warm, and ooooooh so super yummy and fun to wear. And it needs a really great name. Any ideas? Leave a comment, with your name idea, for a chance to win one of my crazy felts!

Your personal reflection: What kind of creative fun will you have today?

Friday, October 9, 2009

Being a Mom is Hard!

This is how I feel today. A little disheveled. A little sick. A little tired. A LOT tired. And maybe a tiny bit bewildered. And here's why....

I never knew that being a mother could be THIS hard! Yes...laugh if you must. But did anyone ever tell you? I'm being serious. We all hear about the wonderful, joyous, amazing experiences we have with our kids, because there are COUNTLESS of these. And thank god, too, because it makes being a parent so worth it.

But, what I'm talking about right now....are the hard times. The exhausting, up-all-night, fussy-all-day, and nothing, (and I mean NOTHING), will help times, we have when our kids are sick. Maybe I could handle this better when I was feeling my best. But man, with NO sleep, and feeling yucky, too, I'm more like a mommy-gone-mad.

I've stayed home for 5 days, been puked on 4 times, snotted, coughed and sneezed on every few minutes, and I won't even tell you how many times we've watched the movie "Babe". I love that talking pig, but watching it over and over in the state I'm in is bound to make anyone feel a little crazy. Let's just say I've started looking out my window at the squirrels just hoping I'll catch them plotting to take over the neighborhood.

Ok...seriously...though...I AM feeling all of these things. And yet, I know there are still moments of gratitude, even when feeling challenged. it goes...

What I'm grateful for in the midst of being sick:

Our immune systems!
The human body is so resilient and unbelievably amazing. We are feeling better each day because we are resting, staying home, eating well and letting the body heal itself. I'm so grateful for a good immune system.

I am grateful for my snugly home, warm bed and my hand-made quilts.

The Present Moment
I've noticed that I've been much more relaxed this week and my mind has been less restless. Rather than trying to conquer my "to do" list, I've known my goal for the day has been to take care of me, and take care of my baby. So my mind has been able to chill out and let me do just that. I'm grateful to have this opportunity to be more present.

My Family
My husband has been a huge help and I'm so grateful that I have his love and support, and I'm grateful that I get the opportunity to be a mother to this sweet soul:
Sometimes we feel good. Sometimes we feel bad. Sometimes we're healthy. Sometimes we're sick. Sometimes we're feeling balanced. Sometimes we're out of control. This is the nature of life, the inhale, the exhale, the night and day, and being able to accept what IS, helps. I am grateful that I can practice acceptance in moments of challenge and frustration.

I feel even more connected to all the women who've been mothers before me, and who are mothers today, and who will become mothers in the future. I have so much more respect and admiration for all the amazing things my mom has, and continues to do for me! I am SO grateful for my mom. Here's a photo of us together when I was the age my sweet boy is now.

So I can take tired. I can breathe into the space I'm at now and and know that the long nights will pass, and what's left is still the amazing JOY that comes from loving another.

Your Personal Reflection: How do you handle challenging times? What are some of the things you are grateful for? Call your mom today, or a woman in your life who is a mother, and share your appreciation with her. It's a tough job and we get "paid" by those small moments of gratitude.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

A Bowl of Nourishment

This is my first official week as "work-from-home/stay-at-home" mom. Just so happens that I caught a bug and I'm down and out. Since moms don't get sick days, I'm here with my little guy, trying to take it slow and rest. Luckily, he's enjoying a pajama day with lots of books, Lego's, bubbles and Sesame Street.

I made a wonderfully yummy and nourishing noodle soup, and I thought I'd share the recipe with you. I got the idea from a Whole Foods Turkey Noodle Soup recipe. The version that I made is vegetarian.

Nourishing Noodle Soup
1 T extra virgin olive oil
4 garlic cloves - minced
1 small, chopped onion
Thyme - to taste
6 cups vegetable broth
2 cup extra wide yolk free noodles
4 cups of great northern beans
4 large carrots - sliced
salt and pepper to taste

Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add garlic and onions. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Add thyme. Add broth, noodles, beans, carrots and salt and pepper. Stir well. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer about 15 minutes or until noodles, carrots and beans are tender.

I had this on low all day on the stove so that we could have a bowl every few hours. Just having the smell in the house made me feel better!

Another tip: If you have a sore throat, try this hot tea: 1 T honey, 1 t apple cider vinegar, half a lemon, couple dashes of cayenne pepper, and hot water. It works amazingly well!

Enjoy and stay healthy!

Your Personal Reflection: What can you do today to nourish your soul?