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June, for some reason, represents a fresh start for me.  If I were observant, I would notice that I have three ‘fresh start’ times in my year…June, September and January.  These are logical transition times for me at the moment as I have 2 young children and those months, not surprisingly, have transitional themes.  I don’t think I need to describe what they are. 

My fresh start today, June 1, involves me writing on an almost daily basis.  I did that for two full years on my blog and it was a fun way to reflect, inspire, be goofy, be serious and anything else that popped up for me.  That is the way I like to write, and somehow I lost that flavor of writing in the past year…which coincided with me having TWO blogs.  I lost my mojo…which resulted in very little writing and I can feel the difference.  

I am figuratively closing shop on my old blog (I may resurrect a few of my old posts and use them here).  My other blog felt like a lifeline for me and it served its purpose, and now this spot, right here, will be my new platform to jibber jabber and wax poetic (as best I can).  

I am giddy with excitement that my writing mojo is back…AND that this beautiful bush is blossoming outside my door.  Every time I see it I think of my early childhood bedroom; it had pink and green flowered wallpaper!


I have been using the phrase “I’m thirsty for knowledge” a lot lately.  On Friday I went to the library and checked out a dozen books.  I’m hoping to get through at least half.  I have to say though that my parents should get a refund on that speed reading class I took in 9th grade.

Another way I’m soaking up information is by participating in this incredibly rich and fabulous program called The W.I.S.H. Summit (it’s free).  Every night for 40 nights (7 have already taken place) Tera Warner shares interviews with great thought leaders of the day.  The very last one is with Maya Angelou…how cool is that?  I’ve made the time every day to listen.  I’ve not been disappointed…and so this will be my daily practice for these 40 days. Wanna join me?

Visual Journaling

I recently ran a class based off of the book the Creative Entrepreneur by Lisa Sonora Beam.  The class was a great success.  I truly enjoyed the process and I REALLY got a kick out of the process of creating art in a journal.  I don’t fancy myself that creative in the aspects of creating art with my hands…with my camera, yes…with my coaching processes, yes…but with my hands, notsomuch.

This process is an easy way to play in the “right side” of your brain.  You can feel creative without having to be that creative…I just cut pictures and words and paste them in ways that feel good.  How fun is that? 

I feel like I’m communing with my child-self.  I feel relaxed and peaceful.  I feel creative.  I feel like I’m solving a puzzle.  I feel inspired.  I feel like I’m giving myself a gift even though there really is no ‘tangible’ outcome from this exercise (except a fun or pretty picture and a happy soul).

My process is:

  1. Set aside about 20-30 minutes (or more if you’re really getting into it)
  2. Have magazines, scissors, construction paper, other ‘crafty things’ and glue available
  3. Have an empty journal, canvas, or poster board
  4. Spread everything out (I usually work on the floor).
  5. Flip through magazines and cut out what speaks to you.
  6. Begin to create a story with the words and pictures you are cutting.
  7. Place the images in a pattern that looks appealing.
  8. Glue pieces (I use glue sticks)
  9. Save the good bits you didn’t use for another session
  10. Enjoy your masterpiece.
  11. Notice the feelings you have
  12. Revisit your journal/piece when you need a lift
  13. Repeat, repeat, repeat…whenever the mood hits

Here are other fun ways I ‘go about it’

  • Sometimes I will create a page based on a specific theme (say Dreams, Happiness, Change). 
  • Sometimes I will set the timer and work with what I can come up with in that time frame. 
  • Sometimes I’ll limit myself to make something from only one magazine.
  • Sometimes I’ll use my intuition and see what comes up.

I ALWAYS have fun. 

Since the new year has begun, I’ve created 5 new pages in my journal.  It is starting to become a regular practice to get me into my right brain.  I plan to share my pages over the next few days!

Why don’t you give it a try and get back to me?  If you’re thinking that it is a ‘waste of time’, or not good use of time.  I would argue that it may actually be the best use of your time…playing in the right brain has inexplicable benefits.  Especially if you’re trying to tackle a difficult problem.  For example, according to Martha Beck (O Magazine, October 14, 2009):

“Once you begin encouraging the right brain to churn solutions, it will do so more and more abundantly”


I am calling a whale to me this year.
I am beginning by sending “my” whale to my friend.
She needs a whale in her life more than me so I’m happy to share.
I love that my mention of a whale to her, set the path to her seeing not just one but three.
If I do not see a whale this year, I am happy…
…because my friend saw one and maybe that is who “my” whale was meant for.
I get chills thinking about this.
I am glad she heard the whale call.
I am glad she ran to the window to see.
That to me is the definition of being mindful and following your instinct.
Even if my eyes did not see a physical whale, my heart sure did.
For that I am grateful.

Feeling REAL

I am hitting my stride with my work.
I enjoy what I do.
I’ve decided that how I do my work is great for me.
I invest in myself.
I take myself seriously.
I am  courageous.
I collaborate with people.
I put myself out there.
I allow myself to be seen.
I learn from my missteps.
I am willing to feel vulnerable.
I love what I do.
I write.
I photograph.
I coach.
I support.
I read.
I learn.
I teach.
I connect.
I give.
I receive.
I love.
I accept love.
I care.
OOOOOO….that felt so good…like a bakrub for my soul.  Now you go. 
Set the timer for 2 minutes and write what is real for you.  Even if you working toward something…write it in the present tense, it kind of tickles a little but still feels good.  Then, if you’re feeling bold, share it with others a) they may add some more to YOUR list and b) they may make their own. 
At the end of the day, its what YOU think about YOU that matters, so strive for the really good stuff!

Reverb10: Try

Reverb10 Prompt: Try. What do you want to try next year? Is there something you wanted to try in 2010? What happened when you did / didn’t go for it?

I want to try find a volunteer community that will use my passions, skills and abilities in a way that I both build my capacities and serve others.  I want to feel inspired, connected to something bigger, useful and of service.  I wanted to do this in 2010 and made a few efforts but I don’t believe I was in the “right place” at the time.  I applaud myself for making the effort and I use that action to remind myself that I have the capacity and now I open up to “the powers that be” to provide the experience that feels like Cinderella’s glass slipper!

Nature does nurture

We went on a family hike yesterday and it was fulfilling on so many levels.  The kids had wide open space to run and play (which I believe is in their job description).  There were trees to climb.  There were farm animals to pet.  There were trails to explore.  The kids walked up ahead so my husband and I could catch up with each other.  The kids made up a glorious imaginative story that blew my mind.  I got to take more than a dozen photos of nature and my kids (my son was a ham – and not of the pig version).  I got to say my poem…”Two roads diverged in a yellow wood…” which now drives my daughter crazy, however I’ve noticed that she is starting to say it on her own. 
I swear that nature is magic and I recommend it to everyone who is searching for a little bit of connection to something more; solitude, grace, insight, love and dare I say enlightenment.  I believe those elements are encapsulated in every cell of nature…and then over time the lessons from nature can extend to our “real” lives…and then…and then healing can begin…joy can enter…overwhelm can subside…and lonliness can retreat.  For me, my walk on Sunday felt like connection on a paradoxical level: expansive and intimate at the same time.  Of course the whole family was left wanting more…which is as it should be.  Note to self…more nature means more to life.

Summer Hours

I’ve been using the classic phrase:  “Where did the time go” recently as summer is nearly over, and it seems as if it went by in a flash.  Here is where I detail why I’ve gone radio silent on this blog.

This summer will definitely go in the books as one of the more memorable ones in that it included an abundance of travel.  I can officially say that my fear of flying has been tempered if not solved (I hesitate to be bold enough to say ‘solved’ but so far so good).  Maybe I could do a whole session on how I wrangled my anxiety during the 21 legs of flying I did this summer. 

My biggest and best memory for the summer is celebrating my 15th anniversary with my husband in Vietnam and Cambodia.  We had an amazing time.  We celebrated our commitment to each other in a way that we both love: exploring new territories, immersing ourselves in a new culture, experiencing unique cuisines, meeting interesting and engaging people, reconnecting in a neutral (to us) territory and making plans to do more of the same. 

I remember thinking years back that what you’re “supposed to do” at significant anniversaries is to get new jewelry….but really, that doesn’t float my boat.  Yes, I do like jewelry, I appreciate beautiful things, but if I have to prioritize how our money is spent it will ALWAYS be on experiences versus things.  I’m not usually one to use superlatives, but in this case, I feel compelled to do so.

The biggest lesson from this summer of travel is that when I choose to connect with my passions and interests (no matter how big) my life feels full.  I intend to continue on this path.