Inspiration From The Vortex.

Coming your way once a week, join me on a whimsical, informative and at times profound journey into the depths of healing the soul………..mine……..yours………..the whole planet!

 

Sweet Potato Brownies For Me!

moon sky cloudsThe dancing every day is not happening quite yet but I did have a good dance at a party on Saturday night, on the earth by a camp fire in fact. Bare feet would have been even more awesome but it’s still winter and the grass was wet from an earlier rain so I danced in my boots beneath a beautiful moonlit sky full of amazing clouds. Just as well after a week when I worked two nine to five sacred sensual firedays instead of my usual one, on the afternoon of the second day my shoulders were having a lot to say about how much they hate sitting still for so long! They say that our sedentary ways are bad for the body and I couldn’t agree more. That and much of the food that people eat which tends to be full of all kinds of crazy chemicals that were never meant for human consumption.

Which brings me ever so neatly to what was a big highlight of my party night, I made my first ever batch of brownies! The birthday girl was surprised that I’d made something to bring, I’m known for many wonderful attributes amongst my lovely friends but cooking isn’t really one of them. Having said that I usually do ok when I make the effort and the brownies were no exception. There are only five ingredients for this recipe, sweet potato, nut butter, maple syrup, cocoa (I used cacao) and carob chips. It was so easy I managed to make them as part of a busy day with no stress whatsoever. I’m hoping this will inspire me to start exploring more gluten free food, there are a lot of very simple recipes out there these days. I found this one on Facebook ages ago and feel incredibly grateful that I worked out how to save links, great resource when I was looking for quick and easy party food.

sweet potato brownies

Isn’t it just the best when you are savouring delicious food knowing that every bite is contributing to the health and well-being of your body, mind and soul. When I eat like that I can feel my body saying thank you as well as the taste buds, nice when the whole system is saying YES, thank you, thank you. I feel the same way when I have one of my green smoothies full of fruit and veggies, positively brimming with life force energy. But please don’t assume I’ve achieved some kind of perfection in this, I still have bread sometimes and the sugar monster is never too far away. I do my best to limit that sort of thing but being too hard on yourself when you do eat naughty foods can stress you as much as the food itself. In the end balance is the key and if you enjoy cooking then it will be much easier to make sure that your meals are mostly nourishing and nurturing.

green smoothie

Having said that I’m not much into cooking and even I found it easy so if you have a sweet tooth and like chocolate brownies check out this recipe and see what you think. Yay for yummy gluten free treats!

5-Ingredient Anti-Inflammatory Sweet Potato Brownies with Almond Butter, Cocoa and Maple Syrup

Bodies Love To Move!

ecstatic danceAs I sit here wondering what to talk about my mind keeps thinking about dancing and how I haven’t been doing much at all lately. My body has this odd disconnected yearning when I tune into it and there is nothing that my mind is doing at this moment that makes any difference at all to this physical sensation. In fact the mind can help the body to relax by using it’s capacity for understanding but there are times when talk is cheap and the only thing to do is to dance! My Beloved and I are no longer running a monthly dance and our local musical co-op closed down at the start of the year so the possibilities for going out and dancing have been less in our town.

people-dancing

That of course is no excuse and barely makes it in as a valid reason even, dancing can happen anywhere including when we are at home all alone. A FB friend just had a dancing challenge where she danced for half an hour every morning with her kids, what a good idea I thought to myself as I clicked on ‘going’. You can guess where I am going with this, I did not do one formal dance session in the two week period. And I LOVE to dance, when I manage to have a really good movement session I feel AMAZING! This is starting to sound a lot like a recent post on meditation and how I wasn’t managing to get myself on the cushion in spite of how beneficial it is to my health. Well I have made it to at least a couple of meditation classes since then but as for a regular practice, forget it.

women dancing

So what to do? The first thing that comes to mind is that it would be useful to talk to my Beloved about this issue and see if we can come up with a buddy system that supports regular movement for us both. I’m thinking dancing here, it’s usually sensible to do one thing at a time and as a deep lover of the transformational energies of dance I know that if I create the space my body will adore moving the energy in this way. The other idea I’ve had is to run a weekly dance class that goes for an hour and call it “Dance For Joy!” I can’t  be the only person who has this problem and I love the vision of a room full of people laughing and dancing to an eclectic mix of tunes old and new. If you have a look there are often plenty of meditation classes for people to attend but dance classes where you get to do your own thing are not so common. So this will be my next focus for a class but in the meantime I will see what I can do about moving this gorgeous body of mine a little more often.

The spirit in motion heals, expands, circles in and out of the body, moving through the layers of consciousness from inertia to ecstasy.  Open to the spirit, and you will be transformed.
Gabrielle Roth

And I will continue with my gratitude practice because that helps with pretty much anything and everything! I’m noticing as I feel gratitude and visualise my body in motion that my mood is lifting even as the body’s yearning becomes more pronounced. So what kind of incredible transformation might be possible when I actually dance in real time with an open heart and mind. I’m smiling and feeling very excited at the prospect!

Gratitude-Atitude-Quote

 

Mindfulness And Chocolate!

chocolateOn the edge of a cramp my belly craves chocolate and sugar which is surprisingly delivered at 8.30am in the glove box of my car as I return the driving sunglasses to their home. No breakfast at home and now artificial stimulation is glaringly there just as my willpower says “You’ve got to be kidding!” and promptly eats a row before I settle into five minutes of meditation. This is no clear space of light and clean with mindfulness sparkles gleaming out into the urban landscape. There has been no natural organic segue from sleepiness to waking alertness on my more traditional nine to five day. The trees and sunshine do their best to draw me back into the earthly realms as they wink and smile at me but part of me feels quite disconnected.

sunny-tree-branches

gum tree paperbarkPart of this feeling is my reluctance to come back after a five day holiday that my Beloved and I took at the beginning of our house sit almost two weeks ago. So lovely to let go of the everyday world and especially the online one, a wonderful convenience but it does impact on our organic selves in ways that are not always helpful. The more sensitive I become in the world the more I notice when I’m not feeling connected to the natural world. It’s easy in modern society to sometimes forget that we are natural beings and that much of what creates happiness for us comes from inner resources. It isn’t so easy in front of  a computer in an office to reconnect with that place so I tend to focus on my body as a doorway or bridge from one realm to another. When I arrive at the car park I consciously connect with the trees and the birds and if it’s too wet to sit for my meditation I at least spend a moment with my hand on the trunk of a tree.

disconnected

And even then I can fall prey to unexpected windfalls of chocolate and get caught up in the concrete and steel, the humming of lines of energy, seen and unseen. So the first part of navigating days like this one are just about practicing mindfulness and not giving yourself a hard time when your actions are not always peaceful. If you notice sensations of disconnection then that may be a victory in and of itself! Even if you can’t seem to get back into the flow be grateful that your inner growth has fostered deeper understanding and the ability to see more clearly what is happening in your body, mind and spirit. If you persist with this process you will improve the quality of your life. I can say this with great certainty as this has been my experience so far, the more I bring awareness to me and to my life the happier I become overall.

But there always seem to be times of varying energy levels in life’s tapestry and the trick is to ride the waves whatever the speed, to wherever it is that life wants to take us to next! I for one would like to take a moment to thank Life for all that it brings to me and especially for the gift of my dear Beloved who brings a song into my heart every day in every way. Aho!

Big Rainbow

Menopausal Me: The Libido Monster Rides The Wave Of Change!

heal yourself expoFor those who read my last post the Heal Yourself Expo was a great success and created a lovely laid back energy even as if offered true seekers a variety of alternative viewpoints on health and well-being. I had a rewarding couple of days and look forward to an event that grows and evolves over time even as it carefully keeps itself small and intimate. Less razzle dazzle and more education and empowerment! http://www.healyourselfexpo.com/ My focus at the moment with my health is the transition that I am currently experiencing which will take me from mothering to crone. Yes I am finally feeling menopause in my body and it is an interesting and sometimes very uncomfortable journey.

menopause dwarves

My moon time flow has never been regular and in the fifteen or so years that I’ve been keeping track I have never been able to discern a pattern. But that it is beginning to cease is obvious now and I spend a lot of time with the impending feel of the changing of the blood without the relief of it’s arrival. It is hard to describe what this feels like, there are times when I get cramping pains but a lot of the time the sensations are much more subtle than that but pervasive nonetheless. There is a sensation in my belly that sweeps through and for some reason is full of doom and gloom. At this point I am filled with gratitude for the mindfulness practices that I have put energy and focus into as it is relatively easy to notice my mind trying to justify the anxiety in my uneasy belly. I am very firm as I separate the sensation from the dark feelings and tell myself that it is a feeling that has no base in my tangible reality.

womans body energy

Sometimes I get this rush of energy through my body that feels like it wants to burst out of my skin. It makes me feel a bit crazy and is often accompanied by intense lust which can be a bit disconcerting for my dear Beloved even as he welcomes my ongoing horniness! I am so blessed because my beautiful lover allows me to express these intense feelings by groping him rather crudely at times and making strange noises. Some of you are probably wondering why anyone would have a problem with this but the “Libido Monster” does feel a bit out of control and can be overwhelming for us both. I have heard that some women lose interest in sex while they are going through menopause so I guess we can be grateful that our wonderful sex life will continue unabated!

couple make love

This exploration has been from the inside so far as I observe thoughts, feelings and sensations as they occur in my body. But I am lucky that one of my 50th birthday presents was a book called “New Menopausal Years: The Wise Women’s Way” by Susan S Weed. I haven’t found the time to read it yet but it apparently goes through all the different options for navigating menopause, from the bio-medical model to herbal and natural therapies. I will get to my reading in due course and in the meantime observe my body as it rides the wave into the next stage of being a woman. An exciting new adventure in the ongoing drama of being a human on Planet Earth!

wild woman

 

You Can Heal Yourself!

Heal Yourself Expo

 

In my last post I talked about the satisfaction and the health benefits that come with caring about other people and finding ways to be of service in the community. This can be done as a volunteer of course and there is a particular feeling of reward that you get when you are offering your time to help others without any financial benefit. But we all need money to live so what if your job could be something that not only supports you but also makes a valuable contribution to the community. This is something I’ve been working on for years and with some real issues of self-worth coming up in relation to money it hasn’t been an easy path. In our current Western culture it can often be hard to find a higher purpose to life but without that sense of meaning we are like zombies in an automated world, collecting more and more stuff!

So I am very excited to be offering Intuitive Counselling at the “Heal Yourself Expo” in Maroochydore this coming weekend. It’s an opportunity for a very small business like myself to connect with those who are seeking healing and a greater purpose to their lives. If I end up being very busy I will miss the presentations but that will mean I am getting to help lots of people who are genuine seekers. Helping other souls to expand and grow and evolve as human beings, sounds like a good time to me! Ultimately those who are doing this kind of work will do themselves out of a job but when we get to that place it won’t be necessary for anyone to have a ‘job’. That is a statement that many people would consider crazy but with the technology available now there really isn’t any need for everyone to work for a living.

The expo is the sort of environment where those who do question the status quo and want to know about alternatives for health and well-being can explore a range of possibilities. And a big part of what people will gain from this sort of exploration is that they have the power to heal themselves. Nothing wrong with being inspired by others but at the end of the day you are the only one who can create change within yourself. And if you change then the world changes around you. Seemingly insurmountable problems can disappear in the blink of an eye even though you may appear to have ‘done’ nothing on the surface. I once went from complete overwhelm when I was studying and working to being calm and in control, simply by putting some crystals and a photo of myself on an altar and saying a prayer. If you would like to hear that story check out the post “My Strawberry Heart“.

Heal Yourself Expo 2

So if you live somewhere near the Sunshine Coast in Queensland and you are a seeker, come and say hello. There will be talks on a wide range of subjects and interesting stalls to look at, I’m expecting it to be a stimulating and inspiring weekend. Here is the website for the event: http://www.healyourselfexpo.com/

 

Compassion Is Cool And Good For Your Health.

Relaxed and readingI’ve been a bit stressy the last few weeks for lots of different reasons so it is with a sense of great relief that I can declare myself as extremely chilled! Some of this is due to actual events but a lot of it has to do with the big changes that my internal beliefs have gone through. When my Beloved hit some bureaucratic snags that affect our income I did not go into gloom and doom, my focus was rather on all the good stuff that is happening instead. And I made a conscious decision that I was prepared to let go of anything that wasn’t absolutely necessary to our survival including the trip for my brother’s wedding. I didn’t contract over money in fact I suggested we go out for dinner and guess what, the world didn’t end. Not only did the world not end but other changes have taken a whole lot of pressure away from the goals I’ve been striving for and it is all looking very achievable.

sunshine happy

What is really getting me excited is that I responded positively to changing events even when they seemed negative. I found things to be grateful for and took the opportunity to take care of myself by going to yoga and meditation and then having a very relaxing weekend. I was already chilled when the bits of good news came through so things just got better and better! So no matter how hard it might seem to have a practice of gratitude or meditation or yoga, it really is worth doing whether the results are instant or take a lot of time. Having a sense of purpose helps a lot as it can keep you on track with what you are doing even when it seems like nothing is happening. Interpreting events in positive ways is also very helpful and giving focus to those things will pay off in how you feel about life in general.

Being positive

Being generous is also a factor in having a sense of well-being in your life, the article at the end of this post talks about ways in which you can improve the skills that will help you to become healthier and happier. Helping other people feels good and there are numerous studies that demonstrate the truth of this. Become a regular volunteer and you will increase your chance of living longer and enjoying your time on the planet a whole lot more! I’ve been pretty busy and stressed out but that hasn’t stopped me from volunteering at my local neighbourhood centre for a few hours each week and it is contributing to my sense of well-being. Neuroscience is showing us that being kind and compassionate is good for our neurons so if you want to be really healthy it’s time to be nice at every opportunity. And don’t forget to include yourself in that approach!

helping others

Here’s the article I mentioned:

How Science Reveals That “Well-Being” Is a Skill

Bureaucracy Rules And It’s Not Ok!

bureaucracy1My gratitude practice was severely strained last week as I struggled to find something to be grateful for in the face of bureaucratic nit picking taken to extraordinary lengths. As I do my best to raise funds to get myself and my Beloved to Thailand for my brother’s wedding I can’t even manage to get myself a passport which has to be step number one for any overseas venture. Because my name was spelt Kerri on my birth certificate I have to go through an application to change my name to Kerry, the spelling I have used for the entire length of my 52 years on the planet. And to avoid waiting 67 business days for this absurdity to be processed it is costing me $211 to change something that has come about because of a clerical error. This is a world gone mad where restrictions that are supposed to keep us safe from the bogey man are interfering with ordinary folk trying to go about their everyday business.

fairys raise your standards

Dwelling on that kind of insanity can start to send one quite mad so after having a healthy vent I did my best to find something to be grateful for. The thought of my Beloved sprang forth and began to bring hope back into my heart. Then I decided to ask the Faeries for some help and the card that they sent me was “Raise Your Standards”. One card with one simple message and the flow of tentative thankfulness became a flood of positivity and light. Not exactly great wisdom you might think but what that phrase did for me was shift my focus from lack to abundance. Instead of going into worry over things costing even more I could see that it was only a problem if I didn’t think I could meet the challenge. And bits of me are still a bit unsure and sending messages of doom into my belly even as I put these words into writing.

feel the fear comfort zone

I’ve never read the book “Feel The Fear And Do It Anyway” by Susan Jeffers, but the phrase has enormous resonance in and of itself. There is a part of me that wants to give up in the face of over the top bureaucracy, it doesn’t believe I have the capacity to earn the money needed so why bother at all. Luckily I have a stubborn streak which won’t let me give up so I will just have to feel all that fear and keep going on the path to abundance. I managed to do 10 minutes of meditation during lunch today so anything is possible! The list goes on, doing yoga classes again, eating healthy and maintaining my recent weight loss, living with the love of my life….. Many of these things seemed quite impossible not so long ago and yet here I am. Life is good and I am grateful!