May 21, 2015

I am



A few times recently I have been asked the question, "What do you do for a living?". I find myself grasping for a conventional short answer, Artist, Designer, Writer, Teacher, a simple one-liner that can be easily understood. But this inevitably leaves me feeling exactly the opposite, not really understood at all, fragmented, uncertain of how to explain myself and not really knowing which title to commit to in that moment.

I don't usually put too much stock in labels, but they do serve a certain purpose and convey certain truths. Especially where my kids are concerned, they want to know what I do - what I call myself, or more specifically what they can tell their friends I do. My oldest tells people I am an Alchemist, which feels pretty genuine and more all encompassing that any other title, I suppose. I can imagine the questions that follow that definition, and I wonder if his friends envision me in a black pointy hat and cackling over bubbling green potion. My youngest wanted me to come to his class to talk about my job as part of a Community Helpers unit. He asked me what my job was, and for simplicity sake I told him I'm an artist. His response was that I am NOT an artist because I have no paintings hanging in a museum. Even to my 5 year old I have to explain.

I guess for some things there are just no simple answers, and I'm okay with that. My work is outside convention and I just have to embrace that truth and all its messy layers, which are not bound to any specific medium or product... it's more about who I am in this world: a professional Inspirer, Love Practitioner, Gatheress, Wish Alchemist, Truth Ninja and Fire Tender.

And so much more.





May 19, 2015

deep in the retrograde



The hidden gift of mercury retrograde is that the energy draws us backward and inward. It's a time for a mindful retrospective and to look for cracks in the foundation and new entry points within. Scrolling back through my photos to literally look back at my life, this was the very first one of the thousands I have saved.

Love is Life.

Yes. It's spot on with regard to what I wrote about in today's morning pages, that I need to dig in and find my source of love from within. And not just excavate it, but use it to create my own inner sustenance and sanctuary. 

I've been jammed, lately, with a lot of mind/body turmoil. It's the same song and dance I've been singing for a long time now, so I'll spare you the rehashing of details. But I know this is my greatest work, my highest bar to clear, my magnum opus of sorts - to heal this relationship I have with my own self.

It shows up in a lot of ways, on my plate, in my bank account, and through my flesh and bone. It always has. At times I think I have it figured out. I can feel the connection to that source energy that want's me to pay attention, but then somewhere along the way I lose that stream of consciousness and I find myself stuck again.

I know it is not about the external things. It doesn't really matter what I put in my refrigerator or what adorn my body with... it's all about something within. A disconnect I have had with myself for as long as I can remember. And I feel like I have dug around all the logical places, read all the books, and know where all the injuries are in my lifeline, but it admittedly somehow still feels illusive to me... that source of enoughness... and so maybe there is some shame around that too, like I should have already cracked that code a long time ago. It's a reconciliation I can't seem to get my head around. Maybe that's part of the problem, too much thinking.

So instead of thinking, I'm going to spend some time feeling - feeling the stuff I don't want to feel, and be in this retrograde and all the messiness of it. I had a sort of revelation a couple of weeks ago, that I'm not afraid of my emotions anymore. I used to be. I struggled a lot with the ups and downs of my moods, but more recently I seem to have let that go and a certain ease has come in light of that.

I've learned I can be deep in it and not fall apart.

Besides, I've done all the plans, created all of those support systems, and journaled the fuck out of what I think I need to do in order to finally make things shift. But that's clearly not it. Maybe it's just all part of the same imperfect path... two steps forward, one step back... and maybe it doesn't feel like an arrival, but rather a wildly unpredictable and overgrown path I have to slowly pick my way through. And truth be told, I know I've made progress, especially looking at the huge lesson written above. It's just slow going and patience was never one of my highest virtues.

What I do know is that this is life-long. And today I am here, not back where I started like it sometimes feels, but in the part of my core journey that feels like muck. I see it. I feel it pushing against me from all sides. And that's a good thing.

Because I also know this is where the real work happens, where shaky foundations get burned to the ground in order to rebuild.

This is the real dirty work, allowing the discomfort and embracing the truths that are revealed. If only I can allow it. And so I will circle back as many times as it takes.









May 12, 2015

a year of Inner Alchemy



Now you can claim your place in the circle for an entire year of Inner Alchemy! 

For those of you longing to experience the entire journey of Fire, Earth, Air and Water, I have decided to offer this year's round of Alchemy Card making as one complete circle as we begin once again this summer!

NEW for this next full round of Fire, Earth Air and Water magic!

* all new Guides, decks and card prompts as every deck is it's own adventure *

* daily videos and card notes *

* a deeper dive into working the elemental aspects of each circle *

 *new ways to use your cards and customize this work for what you most need *




Centered around making your own one-of-a-kind Alchemy Deck, in each circle you will be guided with stirring prompts and easy how-to's to infuse each of your cards with insight and deep personal meaning. You will also learn ways to use these cards as a powerful tool in your creative life and work. Best of all, you'll be able to call upon this deck over and over again to conjure inspired clarity and sparks of wisdom whenever you need it most.

These cards are magic... part works of art and part sacred love story. 


To see a glimpse of gorgeous Alchemy Cards created in previous circles, look here, or find them on Instagram under the hashtag #alchemycards.



Inner Alchemy Circle :: the 4 elements
an online gathering


fire :: July 12-25, 2015

earth :: October 18-31, 2015

air :: January 9-22, 2016

water :: April 2-15, 2016


{$219} limited space, these circles will likely sell out! 
*save $57 on a whole year (or $69 a la carte as space allows)






This circle is for YOU if you're longing for... 

>---> new wild ways into getting messy in creative inspiration adding a rich dose of core creativity to each day.

>---> developing a simple yet powerful creative practice that is rooted in playful possibility and wild and messy inner exploration.

>---> fierce guides to support you in wise conversations with your own truth allowing you to dig deeper into the magic you already posses.

>---> connections with kindred community in an encouraging and inspiring sacred circle.




These tools will be our way into our wild Inner Alchemy:

* Creating your own seasonal/elemental Alchemy Deck (28 cards each) with daily videos and easy how-to's. 

Each round will include 12 new Inner Alchemy Circle Guides, offering up their own brand of alchemical badassery! see the stellar line-up of gorgeous guides in previous circles herehere, here and here.

* Alter making and sacred space clearing for each season and element.

* Fun ways to utilize your cards and integrate them into your creative work and life. 

* Custom Made Alchemy Kits exclusively available for workshop participants for an added infusion of Fire, Earth, Air and Water energy. For sale in my Etsy shop before the start of each class.

* Private site and Facebook page for gathering and group discussion, where you can safely dive into meaningful work at your own pace, make new connections, share the cards you make, and receive all the beautiful energy of our Inner Alchemy Circle Coven. 




Explore your Inner Alchemy!


{$219}

May 11, 2015

gypsy market treasure hunting


One of the things I love about where we live is the amazing abundance of vintage shops and flea markets in our area. So many yummy treasures to peruse. Sunday mornings at Todd Farm is one of my favorite ways to spend time with my family, junking and exploring the world through this fascinating lens. With so many interesting oddities and intriguing antiquities it always seems to be a bit of an education. My kids love to wonder over all of the stuff from 'the old days' and ponder their archaic usefulness and marvel at old craftsmanship. 

It's more about the experience and the adventure than really buying stuff, and we try not to just accumulate more clutter and choose things that we truly love and will use. Our hope is to have our own table once this season, and try vending and recycling some of our fun treasures back into mix. Yesterday though, the Mother's Day tables were full and abundant and we seemed to hit it just right and get some really great deals - most of what we bought was only a dollar or two! Gotta love the flea.



Always pretty gems and lots of natural wonders to discover... deer antlers, geodes, animal skulls, Native American art and more.



Found these dreamy mermaid watercolors that I totally swooned over, framed and ready to hang, for my bathroom.



We were in the silver and gold. A hand-dipped real mariposa, sterling silver pieces, and this awesome belt and buckle from the nice lady who we also bought breakfast for. Delivering doughnuts is part of our deals ;) 



A couple of cool Moleskine journals for my husbands scribbles.



 Some vintage skeleton keys for Alchemy Kits, from the lovely French couple who gave my little guy one for free. Even the kids both found something that made their hearts happy.






May 5, 2015

the alchemy of hosting a creative gathering




It's been almost two years since I started hosting my informal creative brunches, and they've come to be an important part of my world. More than I ever imagined, these gatherings are sustenance for my soul and a wonderful way I can give back to the women in my community who support me and love on me in so many beautiful ways. There's just something about coming together in a space of joyful creativity and good food with no other expectations than to just be together, that is just so nourishing.

A lot of people ask me how I pull together these gatherings, and I guess I never really thought in detail about the how... just more the why, which I have always been very clear on when I began to open up my home and hold space for this magic to happen.




So if you're longing to create space for hosting a creative gathering, here are a few things I learned along the way to make it as simple and stress-free as possible.

1. Know your why. Intention is power. For me, my why was all about finding my people and building local community. As someone with an amazing online community that is spread out all over the globe, I wanted to somehow connect with those same kindreds nearby. I began with a small handful of women I knew, and it grew organically from there. Eventually, I came to realize this was not only a nourishing soul-practice for me, it was also an important gratitude practice of mine. No PR or fancy planning. Just all heart and TLC.

2. Get over the imperfections. A huge lesson I had to learn was that no one was coming to judge me on my home or my furniture or my housekeeping skills. People are coming to gather and connect in creative joy and are gracious for such time and space! I had to let that go and embrace the occasional cobweb, the mismatched chairs, the unfinished dining room table and all the domestic imperfection. It may sound trivial, but it was an honest hurdle and one I'm happy to say I don't struggle with at all any longer.

3. Make it easy on yourself. Use what you have. Not everything has to be made from scratch. There are no fancy supplies you need to buy. Do not overextend yourself to the point where you can not be present and have fun, yourself. Allow others to come and fill the space you created with their own bits of joy and gratitude in the form of food or pretty paper. Learn to not only give, but to receive! I always ask people to bring a little something to share, and have magazines and scraps handy as it's what I always have an abundance of. We make little collages, cards and dream boards while happily chatting, eating and gluing. It's serious yet simple medicine.

4. Have no expectations. Build it and trust whoever needs it, will come. I have never asked for RSVP's (though people have generally been gracious about letting me know), and have faith in each gathering manifesting in just the way it's supposed to. Somehow it always does. It is never the same exact group, and there always seems to to be enough room around my table. All you need to do is stay open.

5. Pour in the LOVE. I always add little touches of personal love and gratitude... little seasonal favors and always a message of love and thanks for my guests to take home with them. I want people to leave full in every way. I'm so grateful to have others come, and I know it's sometimes a huge effort to walk into a new space with new people. But what always ends up happening is through the messiness of making and showing up, connections are made and deep nurturing happens.

It truly is magic.





May 3, 2015

full flower moon


Full moon in Scorpio. Lunar Beltane. It's a doozie, pushing through that space of light and dark and getting down to the hidden bones. I feel the hard work of it. The messiness. The marrow. I've sort of been achey in my head all weekend.

But something wants to shift, so I am allowing space for whatever wants to be. In the nakedness. In the truth of my own flesh and blood. Into something more deeply rooted.

It's not about abundance this time, it's about scraping away what's unnecessary and left over.

And so this emerged in today's visioning.... naked and unafraid, truth teller.... and the truth is I am often afraid. Afraid I can't. Afraid I'm not enough. Afraid of what I can't control. But it's that fear that always walks me home. Maybe that looks like a kind of fearlessness, going with it hand in hand, and maybe in some ways it is.

Yes, in some way it definitely is.






Apr 29, 2015

spirit sex and sea hags

(of all the shiny things at the gem shop, this is what I truly coveted... coyote skeleton)


Alex and I were laughing hysterically in the shower the other day, talking about love and afterlife and the idea that our souls will always find a way to each other to do the nasty, like an explosive mingling of wild eternal mana. My kind of devotion.

It's a profound thing to realize you love someone in a way that words just feel inadequate, and I found myself unexpectedly in tears thinking about the finality of our time on this earth together. It's not nearly long enough, even from a glass half full perspective. I want more. I need forever.

Hense, our sacred pact of never ending spirit sex ;)

I think I am just wired for down and dirty connection. Intimacy is my language... to see and be seen in a way that is messy and life-affirnming. It's in the marrow and beneath the pretty, that everything feels the most meaningful to me. I need the friction of to-the-bone vulnerability in order to grow and feel alive. This sort of thing seems to keep coming up in conversations with those who really know me.

Then this post came across my sky, thanks to my friend and favorite tattooed sea hag, Nina....

"I want to be a sea-hag. Not a mermaid. I want to be with the thieves, not the new day gypsies. I want to be in the dive bar, not at Whole Foods. I want messy plastic altars not shiny stained glass windows.

I’m tired of all the sparkly trendy things. I want realness. I want the depths. The unglamorous. Dirty real."


YES.

My kind of tea party. I totally need to crash.







Apr 24, 2015

yesterday i had a come to jesus with LOVE



Yesterday I had a sort of epiphany, and it went something like this.

When I stop living in fear that LOVE is finite, that it's in any way quantifiable or measurable... everything becomes infinitely possible.

It's a hard thing to articulate without sounding oddly religious or preachy, but maybe that's part of the realization too. That love is truly my faith. 

I'll try to explain what I believe to be true, so far...

The lesson in love begins with our family, then our friends, then our partners. From being born into unconditional receiving, to the addition of so many variables and conditions... so it seems. When sex and romance get thrown into the mix it makes everything feel so much more complicated. The sex gets intertwined with how we experience love and rearranges our definitions of intimacy. 

Intimacy is just the way in. Intimacy is the pathway of vulnerability which can be explored by many different means... the mind, body, or spirit. Vulnerability is love.

But we are taught that LOVE is the destination, the pinnacle, a place where we will eventually arrive and find happily ever after. But the truth is, real intimacy always leads us back to ourselves, to the wild womb of self truth, our highest calling of love and what truly matters. 

The idea that love is ultimately found outside of ourselves breeds a sense of scarcity that creates room for fear to creep in... that there is one best love, one soul mate, one perfect partner for the rest of your life, and that one kind of love might be better, greater than another. Love doesn't feel like the all-you-can-eat feast that it is, it seems more like a winning lottery ticket. Add the mythology of a broken heart, that without partnered love we are somehow imperfect, we forget our inherent wholeness.

We forget that our worth is not determined by others.

Really, love is not about sex or any kind of commodity, weight or measure that we may try to attach to it. Love is unconditional, weightless, never-ending. Love is our birthright.

Motherhood might serve to to remind us how it works and what is possible. That we can love more than one human, more than one child, and that while love can be wildly personal and individualized it has no limit. There are no boundaries. The heart expands, if you simply allow it. More babies, more love. Bam, just like that.  

So, this is what my life is trying to teach me again and again, in my friendships, in my open marriage, as a mother, daughter and so on... Love in and of itself, is limitless. It's about relationships and connections of every variety that are fundamentally expansive and all-inclusive. There is always enough love to hold it all.

The greater lesson, then?

Love is simply my life's infinite potential.

This is my lightening, my freedom, my wild YES in every direction. It is how I walk with fear and the messiness of all the hard emotions that come with along with allowing and living completely wide open.

I wildly trust in LOVE.






  

Apr 18, 2015

full circle, and what's next for my Inner Alchemy Circle


cards by Water Coven participant, Nancy Holly


The idea for Inner Alchemy Circle came to me when I was driving home last spring, from Squam. It was just one of those universal downloads that came in a rush of clarity and excitement. It took about a week to work out the details, a flurry of wild scribbles into my notebooks that came together in the energetic sweet spot of deeply knowing and wanting, yet teetering on the edge of fear. That's how I always know it's a, YES.

When the first circle manifested, it was like lightening... and the magic just took over. The cards started filling up my life, as did the crazy good magic of so many wise and beautiful women.

Real everyday alchemists.



Four rounds now complete, all elements journeyed through - earth, air, fire, water - and the process continues to reveal itself. What's next?

Fire.

The first time we circled in the energy of Fire, I hadn't truly found the way of the cards. So, I will be expanding on what I know and going deeper into the elemental magic to bring us full circle once again. It's a bit of technical learning I've had to do as well, and I hope to continue to expand on this to improve the experience and make it more richly interactive. And so many of you have asked for this work to continue - thank you! July 12th will be our next online circle and will begin our next year of Alchemy Cards.




Then, on to.... Spirit.

The next iteration of this work, a dream I am hoping to make real by 20-16, Inner Alchemy Circles in person. Spirit Coven will be bringing to life all I know and all I love about the magic of circling and making Alchemy Cards through all the elements, live and to new places. While I'm clear about the process and work, I'm not exactly sure how these circles will manifest and that's truly part of the excitement, but I know for sure this is where the energy wants to go. It's that knowing and trusting that is pulling me forward into this juicy new space, and I am utterly thrilled by the idea of making cards with other wild creative sorcerers in person!

Serious juicy magic to come... and maybe in your neck of the woods!






Apr 9, 2015

in the why of my desire



Desire is a powerful thing. It is raw, gritty and feral. The kind of energy that draws wild things to us. Understanding and inhabiting our desire is an adventure, a thought/feeling experiment, the golden ticket if only we can shed the ego enough to step up to claim the real prize.

Desire is a gateway to truth.

Really, anything can be a representation of truth and desire. The food on our plate, the money in our bank account, the lover in our bed, the books on our bedside table. A wise teacher once told me that everything inside of you, is right there in front of you - you live in the physical manifestation of your inner world. Trippy, I know, but I think it's absolutely true. What we want and surround ourselves with, speaks volumes.

I am always questioning my desire - not judging it and assigning it good or bad - that is not really helpful or how desire works. A lot of the time desires don't show up as practical or even rational. Desire simply wants what it wants and leaves you to the task of deciding whether or not to feed it. So, I try to stay open to what the tug of desire wants to teach me and be as honest as I can about the why

Everything is a lesson if you are open to receiving it.

And desire and I have been tumbling and talking into the wee hours of the night a lot, lately.