Hi there folks! I realize that I’ve probably lost anyone who still followed my blog in my once again absence. To say that life caught up with me? Well that would be a gross understatement. We have arrived on the final day of August in 2016, it’s 10pm Pacific and I am sitting here with an amazing amount of thoughts rolling through my head.
In the last little while, I’ve been through so much and have really spiritually grown in new and fantastic ways. My path has deepened. My crystal healing work is continuing to grow in terms of knowledge and overall collection. I am content again. I am going to start working out again via BeachBody On Demand. I am stepping outside my comfort zone and really working on myself and the world around me.
I realized, not that long ago, that while I may not believe it, I do have value. I do deserve happiness. I deserve feeling and being beautiful. What does this all mean? Well I am doing new things. I am starting small with things like my hair, my wardrobe and working out at least 5 days a week to start. I am writing a lot, I am learning a lot. Above all, I’ve learned to love myself for who I am not for any of the qualifiers that people put on me. What do they know that I do not, about myself? Pretty much nothing.
Who am I? I am a witch. I am fat. I am beautiful. I am worthy. I am loved. I love. I have some really fantastic friends, who when I was at my absolute lowest, they stood by me. These are the people that lift me up instead of tear me down. The friends who helped me when I fell, the ones who stood for me when I could not. Beautiful spirits, each one of them that stood by me when I could not stand by them because I was broken and struggling to regain myself. I lost a few friends along the way. People that I thought would stick by me, when I reached this low point. Guess I was fooled. That hurt a bit. I am not going to let it keep me down. Ultimately, I cannot be responsible for anyone other than myself and how I react to things. I won’t defend myself, I don’t need to. I will not justify myself or my absence, I don’t need to. I will stand and know that I have come through the gates of Tartarus and emerged stronger, smarter and a different person.
To everyone that I have EVER known, whether present in my life or not, I thank you so much for your contribution to my growth. It was through your season(s) of friendship that I have emerged on the other side of this a different person. To the folks who are still with me, I cannot say, words are so inadequate, how much you have meant to me as I navigated these dark corridors of my shadow workings. I love each of you…my friends past and present.
So this weekend was a pretty busy one…then again they all seem to be busy. I have started to really work with gemstones and some very personal workings that I started earlier this year. I am feeling a real difference.
This weekend I made a few decisions that I can share with you:
- I will blog three times a week
- Monday’s will be weekend musings
- Wednesday will be Gemstones + Magick
- Friday will be freeform whatever comes to mind.
- Starting with the new moon tonight I am digging in deeper to some much needed shadow workings.
- I wrote the ritual for tonight and it’s great. LOL
- Daily House of Night Oracle draws are back on.
Aside from all of these decisions I am starting to feel the fog of an ongoing Dark Night of the Soul begin to lift up. There is still work to be done but the fog is not as thick as it once was and for that I am grateful. I am feeling some real joy in life and the world around me as the depression that has hung on in this dark night starts to alleviate some of its stranglehold.
I started preparing for guests arriving at the end of this month. There is not a TON to do but there is enough that I want to do it in small chunks. I got a lot of old dog toys tossed out, started going through some of the excess that is in the front room and will be doing some serious cleaning in the room that used to be the office.
All in all there is a lot of progress going on in both life and spirituality that seems to get kicked up on the weekends. I’m digging it.
As I continue walking my path and working on eliminating more and more of the processed foods from our diets, this means I am cooking A LOT more. I made this one day last week for dinner and it came out really good. I took a meal my mom used to make for us growing up as “salisbury steaks” and made it my own with some interesting results. I use cubed steaks from the grocer (thin steaks that have been tenderized in a cube pattern on the meat) and beef gravy. Here’s my process.
- 1 package cube steak (I got a package with 4 steaks)
- 1/4 medium yellow onion (thinly sliced)
- 2 tbsp minced garlic (not dehydrated)
- 1 tbsp Sriacha Sauce
- 4 medium Gold Potatoes
- 1/2 package frozen green beans
- 1 packet low sodium brown gravy
- 1 cup water
- 2- 1/2 cup red wine (I used a merlot)
- 1/2 stick butter
- 1 tsp Herbs du Provence
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Thinly slice potatoes and place in a round casserole dish. Between layers of potatoes lay thin slices of butter and add seasoning of your choice. I used a sprinkling of Herbs du Provence.
- Once the potatoes have been placed in the casserole dish, add a final layer of thinly sliced butter and then top with the frozen green beans, another thin layer of butter and a sprinkling of herbs.
- Bake in oven until potatoes are tender with a fork (approximately 25-30 minutes)
- In a small sautee pan place 1 tbsp butter and your thinly sliced onions. Sautee until they begin softening then add minced garlic and 1/2 cup of wine. Continue at medium heat until the wine begins to reduce. Add sriacha and complete the reduction until the mixture resembles a compote. turn off heat and set aside.
- In a large skillet brown and cook the Cube steaks with seasoning of your choice. I added a smidge of sriacha, garlic and pink salt.
- When the cube steaks are almost complete make your gravy in another pan with the 1 cup of water, and 1/2 cup of red wine. Warm it until thickened but may be a little thinner than a normal gravy.
- Pour gravy atop the cube steaks and cook approximately 3-5 minutes.
When serving place your steak to one side of the plate with your potato + vegetable to the other side. Top meat with the compote onion/garlic reduction and then a drizzle of brown gravy. Add gravy to potatoes and green beans if inclined and enjoy!
I had wanted to start my re-entry into blogging with something positive and uplifting. I am not sure this qualifies but it is relevant and what is happening right now.
Last weekend I went to Mare Island to participate in The Color Vibe 5K. This is the second time I have done this particular 5K though it was in a different location this year. The group I was to be walking with dwindled from 6 to 3 as folks dropped out for one reason or another. I was mentally prepared for this. Physically I would have been fine if not for the Sciatic attack the day previous that was still bugging me that morning. I hoped with lots of stretching I would be ok. It was not to be the case. At approximately the 2nd of the 3.1 miles of the walk/run I had to stop. I had been compensating to relieve pressure from my right side to my left and my knee had enough of that. I was, to say the least, disappointed.
I felt defeated and like I had failed. I have been carrying this around since Saturday and today is Thursday. At no point have I stopped walking in the time since. Yes I have been kind to my body so that I could recover but I have continued forcing myself up and about to get through the physical pains and strains. I have not; however, always been kind to myself emotionally in the last week. I have decided that under no circumstances can this defeating self-talk continue.
It started with the words from Jennifer that were to me to be kind to myself and to walk that talk. Change the negative to positive. It continued with Lorien saying “fuck em” to anyone who decided to be cruel to me and let it roll off my back. I am resolved to make this happen. For the next 30 days. Everyday I will say nice things to myself. At the end of 30 days, I will feel differently. I will have made my new habits and will walk my way from the dark. Once again I will live in the light and joy of my life. Hello Sunshine, it’s nice to see you again.
It’s been…quite busy in my life. I’ve had to deal with so much change in a short amount of time that it’s quite daunting. So much crazy, so much change that my daily posts were put on hold and I just could not allow that focus to come to be as it was needed elsewhere.
As I mentioned back in November, I lost my beloved furry friend Seth. In early April, barely five months had passed and we lost our lovely C’nedra, our princess wonkadoodle. A very vocal family member. I went deeper into depression and mourning. After a while change needed to be made, Keith sought out a new job and started working at a new place on the 6th of May.
For the most part, the depression is lifting. I am doing another 5K and actually working on training for this one so I can accomplish it in less time than the last. This is where I run into some of my most difficult moments. As a fat girl I have issues with my physical body that sometimes prevent me from doing what my mind wants to do and is geared and ready to do. When my body says STOP and my mind/motivation say keep going, I end up in more pain than I am content with. Example, the other week, I was walking along the path behind the dog park with my husband and dogs. We went about halfway between the dog park and Hann’s park. On the way back I was in a bit of pain but kept trudging on, albeit slower than I started when my body said NOPE not going another step and sat down. At this point I was beside myself emotionally and feeling like a failure because I could not complete a simple walk. It’s heartbreaking sometimes when I WANT to do something and cannot. Logically I know I WILL be able to do it…eventually.
I get into the headspace that pulls me down and here I am again fighting depression more. I had a lovely lunch this past Monday with my friend Jennifer and this is something we talked about. There were a lot of great ideas and among them was when we find ourselves giving into the despair to recognize it and force ourselves out of the house to do something…anything. In order to be able to do the things I want to be able to do, I have to keep moving. Movement is the important piece here. So I’ve resolved to not have a day with less than 2000 steps in it. Working from home, that’s difficult to some degree. So far this week, I’ve made it everyday. Most days I’ve made it drastically over that and yesterday over by 47 steps…Progress is good.
there is a lot more on my mind but this is a good start to getting back into updates and more often.
We are definitely upon the holiday season as things are getting more and more crazy as time ticks away. At the moment I have bags and boxes with Solstice Gifts in them ready to be wrapped then delivered. I will not be attending the Christmas Eve celebration with my local adopted family as we have a new addition to the family by way of our new pup, Lilie and she simply needs us present for her training and growth.
I wrote the paragraph above on December 17th. That is how crazy it’s been for me. I haven’t had much time to really breathe and sleep. Now that Solstice is over it’s about the time that I take stock of the year and the holiday rush and the post holiday “clean up”. This year to me feels especially rough. I’ve been a lot more alone than I am used to or happy with and while I have my wonderful little family, this year I am missing things like family time with parents and the like. It was absolutely wonderful on Solstice that Jenn & Leon came over for a bit (it was Keith’s birthday) and then Xandria came for an overnight visit. It was simply lovely and I was feeling content for all the busy-ness that life has been lately.
I scarcely know where to begin but let’s start with the crazy work schedule of the holidays. Work, yes all the time. LOL. Aside from this I’ve been trying to snatch bits of sanity here and there by visiting Dive into Color in Napa for ceramic painting with my friend Pam Littlebird. Then suddenly life changed on Friday the Thirteenth of December. That’s when Lilie came home to us. She’s such a wonderful bundle of energy and love added to our family that it’s just amazing. Of course having a puppy under three months old also means potty training and denning. As a family we are all denning in the living room until she has some potty control. I do not want accidents on our tempurpedic and the living room is closer than the bedroom. Keith is on one of the couches and I have a mattress on the floor. We all sleep together in the great and huge living room. In short time she’s become an amazing part of our little pack and Ariyana just loves her to pieces.
This of course is what led us to not spend the holiday’s with our adopted family here. I will admit that things are not quite as happy and joyful as I would prefer. I am stressed and missing my best friend. She’s very busy right now too and I hope that sometime soon it calms down so we can have some time. Of course I also miss my bed. *laugh*
With Yule and Christmas both over and New Years rapidly approaching I hope to have some sanity in life and regularly posting again very soon.
Dated: Wednesday 12-11-2013; 8:48 am
There has been a lot going on lately and not all of it is good stuff, but if life were only filled with the good, how could we grow and learn from the bad? Work is crazy busy with being “one man down” and the holidays on top of that. As I continue to walk down the path of life, I become more in tune with the seasons and myself and my family. We aren’t a big family, we aren’t even an average family. It’s my wonderful husband and I plus our pets. Our “pets” are our children and over the years we’ve seen several of them cross the Rainbow Bridge, even as recently as November of this year with Seth’s crossing. It’s never easy to help them transition but we do what we can and move on. We talk about our family and how wonderful it is and how peaceful our home is and often speculate what one more animal could mean to the mix we have. In fact, we’ve been talking about getting another dog for quite some time. Someone for Ariyana to play with and someone to share the love of our home with.
I don’t know how things could look any more synchronous than what occurred this week. As I mentioned, we’ve been talking about puppies a bit lately. In looking at puppies before work I came across a site that manages matching breeders with puppies. At this point I want to simply say do not condemn us for choosing to go this route or for not supporting our local shelters. We DO support the shelters in our area. On this site things quickly lined up in a way that can only be described as perfection and synchronicity. I came across this sweet little white lump of cuteness, an English Cream Retriever. I was stolen by her sweet face then I looked at her name on the site and was done for. Her name was Lily. For those of you that know me, know that Ariyana came to us through an accidental breeding of my best friend’s dogs Oliver and Lily. Oliver is an American Golden and Lily is an English Cream. I looked at many other pictures but kept coming back to Lily. I called the number and with an interview on the phone, it was done. Our new puppy has been found and will be coming home to us this week. In fits of excitement and joy, we went to the Dog Park with Ariyana on Tuesday. It was cold and the wind was blowing a bit but we stayed for a while so she could have some good social time and play time. Afterwards we went to Petco, here in Vallejo. We looked at collars, tags, toys and such. We brought home puppy food, puppy training pads and her collar with tag.
According to the breeder she is a sweet girl who loves to snuggle and play. She’s begun potty training and is eating puppy food now and we are so excited we can’t stand it. We keep talking to the family about the new sister they are going to have. While doing the paperwork, I decided to keep the name Lilie just with a different spelling. It was too perfect of everything lining up to not keep it. Right now, I am waiting for the travel info to arrive so I know when she comes home and won’t post this until I know for sure but I am silly excited and want it to come now!
Dated: December 11, 2013 11:31 AM
I’ve just heard from the travel folks and she’s coming home! YAH!!!!! We are picking our baby girl up on Friday at 5:10pm. Keith is going to be taking a short day on Friday so he can go with me to the airport. The plan is to head over to the airport at about 2 or 3 to make it through the traffic of SFO. I will pick him up in the city from work then we will head on over to the airport and begin the nail biting waiting of the arrival of the little bundle of love and cuteness and joy that is coming our way.
To say that we are excited would be a vast understatement of all the thoughts going through our heads right now. The process has been pretty smooth so far, which I am thankful for. The worst part was holding this until I got the call from the folks in travel to confirm times and all that good stuff for her arrival. I will be spending some time doing puppy-proofing and I am so excited!
Things have been very hard and interesting for me in a lot of ways lately. I’ve been eerily silent, which I don’t care for and really need to find time in my day to make it a point to write something a little!
It’s approaching that time of the year with what I call “the Silly Season” when people go shopping crazy in an attempt to show people they love them by buying them gifts. Don’t misunderstand my words please, I love this season as much as everyone else but I view it a little differently in some ways. I participate in gifting, but gifting from the heart not the pocketbook for the most expensive or outlandish things. Is it useful? Do they like it? Will they use it? Yes, Yes, and Yes, done deal. Can I make it? Will they like it? Yes, Yes, fantastic it’s done. I love showering those I love with gifts but my gifts are often more modest of time and love or something they can use and not just take up space.
This year will be very trying for me in one new way. My work day is now split up. I spend less time doing the things I normally do and spend half my day doing shipping and receiving which means no time for projects such as forum improvement, website development and updates and lesson updates. It’s ok since it’s short term while the shipping gal is out for surgery on her shoulder, so if I am more sporadic than normal in being present please forgive me.
On the parental unit front, Dad had his CT recently for checking on his cancer and he is 98% cancer free! *dance* 3 months and they check again. He’s also now nearly 10 months smoke free. Now if only Mom could drop those last 3 cigarettes a day I’d be uber happy but I will take what steps I can. Dad has a compression fracture in his back that is complicated with the fact he’s been diagnosed with Osteoporosis. Vey so much for one man to handle. He’s understandably grouchy but I try to make him laugh whenever I can.
On the “me” front, I’ve recently walked a 5K here in Vallejo, which I talked about here. With everything that happened just before and since the 5k a mere two weeks ago, I find that I am walking more on weekends and having much more pain in my back from wearing hiking shoes…need new shoes. Also need to go shopping for clothing that fits. *sigh* I hate shopping.
I’ve been grading the last third of First Degree since August. I have a good rhythm for it and am seeing all my grading (third degree too) going much better and faster with my new system. I absolutely adore grading and reviewing homework for our wonderful students here. It’s simply divine in nature and joyful to be able to provide feedback to a student helping them to grow as I grow right there with them. A wonderful loop of love and devotion to this beautiful path.
Guess that is enough of an update for now, I’ve rambled on and on and on.
This past Monday morning, my in-laws left Vallejo heading north on their trek to Crater Lake and the Lava beds and such as they tour in their RV. To say that this was a sad day for us is an underestimate. This was the first time that we had seen them since we relocated to California from Florida.
They stayed in Vallejo during their trip here and we saw them everyday. It was truly a great joy to be able to spend so much time with them. I’ve really been missing some of the connections that were once present in my life. One of them being the presence of family.
My family has grown since the move as we’ve been “adopted” by my best friend’s family here. It’s not quite the same but I so appreciate being included in so many family things with them. Since the move to the west coast things, well are different for us in many ways. This visit brought to the forefront the desire and need for family in life. We had such great times.
In many small ways each day was simply gorgeous. We visited the dog park, a friend’s birthday party in Napa, went on long touring drives to Mt. Diablo, they walked around San Francisco, we went to the beach, we visited the Marin Headlands, Muir Overlook then drove to Lake Berryessa in a windy way.
Each time we did something, or nothing at all and just hung out in the house it was something that made my heart sing a little song. Ariyana enjoyed seeing them everyday and even though they left on Monday, she looks out the window watching for them. Here are a few of the pictures from the trip with them.
All in all it was a very lovely time and these are just a few of the awesome pictures we took