Monthly Archives: July 2008

Fast or feast before a spiritual ceremony? Socialize or silence?

A Horizons reader wrote in and asked:  Once a month I attend shamanic ceremonies held by American friends.  They have a potluck meal before the ceremony.  I know that’s a big Western social tradition, but it feels more like a cocktail party atmosphere than a sacred gathering to me. I’ve done other sacred ceremonies with indigenous groups, and the fasting that’s always done before ceremony is important.  What is your take on the topic?  I replied: “I spent decades following a primarily Eastern faith path, which I realize is very strict in traditional “rules” for ritual, fasting, and no idle talk at ceremony time or in the temple.  I think the payoff for that laser focus is measurable in terms of personal growth, understanding and outcome. I think if it resonates with you, then attend and be open to what might come of it if you don’t judge it and think it should be anything other than it is.”

Email to an under-employed friend suggesting she put some mp3 files of her guided meditations on her website and a Paypal “Pay Now” button.  She’s also a great cook, so I also suggested she give cooking workshops, something like “How to cook for your own party” which doesn’t require meeting catering guidelines for occupational licensing.  “That’s something you are awesome at and already do and are already known for.  You could prepare a few menus, script out your cooking plan and get your ingredients measured out and displayed ahead of time and everyone gets to experience the workshop in “real time”.  So when they see how quickly YOU get it all done and fill the table with goodies, that is a test run for them thinking if you can do it, they can do it.  And for those who can’t, well you have peaked their interest and maybe they will beg you to cater their next party.  Either way you win.”
end of email

I got up at 7am and went out and mowed my yard.  It took 20 minutes!  I love this new mower and I don’t mind sweating when I am out there.  I even for some of it didn’t use the drive lever, making me have to push it.  I figure that is equivalent to using the arm/weight machine at the gym.  I have so little lawn though, I also went out on the street and mowed the easements on either side of me.  My neighbor Francis across the street will look out his window when he gets up and be shocked.  He’s used to my shaggy yard 🙂


An awesome tuna salad

I drove the mags to Cassadaga first thing, and had a Durango chicken caesar salad for lunch on the way home. This week I made an awesome tuna salad. I added chopped onions, radishes, celery, carrot sticks. I first put in a glass bowl 2 tsp wine vinegar and threw in some raisins and craisins to hydrate in it. Then the veggies, then some albacore tuna and then 2-3 giant tablespoons of Veganaisse, some pepper, garlic powder and tarragon.


What a day, on the phone for two hours trying to find someone in the Volusia County Legal Dept’s office to tell me whether my Volusia property is slated for eminent domain.  I started by calling the Property Appraiser who referred me to the State Attorney who referred me to land records who referred me to tax deeds who… you get the drift.  It’s part of a debacle known as Cape Atlantic Estates, just east of I-95 at mile marker 232 I think it is, north of Oak Hill and immediately north of Mayfield Road.  I have two parcels, 2.5 acres each.  The property is not doing anything so the value is not going up.  I’d rather hold on to it since I don’t mind waiting another 20-30 years to become rich off it, than just be given $7,000 because they are putting an exit on my land.    Continue reading

Today was really productive, I got the lawnmower put together and my neighbor Francis came and checked it and I did the lawn, I hedged the focus out front and the eleagnus out back. I swept up my tree trimmings and went to Home Depot to return the smaller of the two hedgetrimmers I bought, and to buy two 39 gallon plastic trash bins. They were on clearance for $18 each since they had no tops *yay* I also bought a spray gallon on sale of some ant spray since they are on parade everywhere outside.  I did the dishes and washed the kitchen cloths. I created a friend’s class lesson handout and finished a client’s newsletter and business card ad and calendar.   I also felt I goofed off a lot and quit work early, but then I did take breaks to do the mowing and hedging and raking.

My initial Illumination session; burning bowl ceremony

I went today to Sharron Hoilman’s and she did an initial Illumination session on me (A Munay Ki process) and it was a relaxing and releasing process.  Just as I was leaving,  the rains poured down and by the time I got home it was pouring.  My yard is loving it.  I have barely used my A/C so far this year, I am under all that good high shade and when it rains it just gets cooler.  I love sleeping with the windows open so I can hear the night sounds from my woods, the crickets, the critters walking up and down the paths all night long.  Continue reading

I bought a new Toro 20065 lawnmower

I vegged most of the day, took a nap, worked some on a writing project I am doing on contract for a friend/client, washed my hair, went to Friendly’s and had some chicken noodle soup and a side salad, worked on a newsletter I do for a friend who has a lawncare business.  I am excited about doing my own lawn.  I had fun yesterday using my hedge trimmers,  rrrrrroooooom, rrrrrrooooom!  And I liked how it looked today.  And instead of thinking of sheesh now I have to clean up the yard clippings, I think of how much good exercise it will be for me.  I even have fun vacumming now with my new Magic Blue vac!  I am vacumming every few days, it takes maybe 20 minutes to do the whole house!  But my furniture is easy to move around to vac under.  I just sent the mag in to the printer, and it will be delivered Friday.  I have emailed my crew and the wheels are in motion!  I picked up my new Toro 20065 lawnmower Saturday, and also the Homelite UT44120 22″ Electric Hedge Trimmer (the larger one of the two I looked at).  Actually I bought both hedge trimmers and meditated on which to open, and I’ll return the smaller one today.     Continue reading

I have been wanting to nap more lately. I just can’t make myself stay in bed if I am awake though.  Now I can stay in a recliner for hours and hours!  That’s why I gave mine away last year.  I like to make myself get moving around and the rule is if the tv is on, I have to be on the floor doing yoga and stretching.

7-19-08 Dream
Although I wasn’t quite asleep yet, it was vivid. A group of maybe 8 male and female professionally dressed (suits, and suits with skirts) on a well groomed front lawn that has a flower garden along the front of it. The people appear to lift the sod and flowers in order to sit up with their legs stretched out in front of them, knees bent, legs under the sod, feet sticking out the other end. They are all just sitting kind of “at attention” except the feeling is friendly and like they are waiting to be judged maybe. I get the feeling they all work together or are a team.

end of dream

I got my Toro 20065 mower today, Francis across the street said he’d help me put it together, since he has the same model.  We’ll do that next week.   I also am trying to decide between two hedge trimmers.  A really lightweight cheaper one  Homelite 2.7 Amp. 17 In. Hedge Trimmer – UT44110 at The Home Depot (price only $30) weight 4.7 lbs and this one step up one Click here: Homelite :: UT44120 3.7 amp  22in. Hedge Trimmer (price was only $36) weight 5.5.  They are both lightweights tho. I got them both and figured I’d decide which one to open, I hate to return something I’ve used even once.  The smaller one I may use more since it’s lighter and shorter, but the bigger one I thought maybe would be sturdier for getting the small palmetto fronds along my paths.  The Palm bay store was out of them and wouldn’t have more until June 30, so I called the New Haven store and they had one left and I asked them to put my name on it and I went and picked it up.

Mag is done!  I can rest tomorrow!


I called to wish brother Jerry happy birthday and woke him up about 7am.   I’ve been cooking the last several days so I don’t have to leave work for long, and have been doing a chicken breast each day.  When I buy them, I package them one at a time in baggies.  Then I butterfly them as they thaw, while they are still half frozen, and squirt lemon juice and soy sauce into the baggie with them.  I’ve been this week cooking them this way:  Nonstick pan sprayed with Pam, cook 3-4 sliced garlic cloves and one onion.  Sprinkle both sides of chicken breast with salt, pepper, garlic powder, oregano powder, paprika, thyme, about 1/2 tsp each.  Then a sprinkle of cayenne pepper (I don’t like a lot of cayenne) and this is my basic blackening seasoning.  Then I cook first one side, then the other, a few minutes each side.  Spray pan when turning chicken over to other side.  Then I add about 1/4 cup water to the pan and let it simmer for a few minutes.  Ta dah!

I’ve been working and not much else. I drove out yesterday for the first time in days to eat a pho soup, worked the entire weekend, missed church and meetings, the days are a blur now.  Mag has to be in first thing Monday.  I can do it, I always do.

I need to go to Home Depot and buy a lawnmower (Toro 20065)

I used to have a problem saying no, then I just stopped committing

I used to have a problem saying no and then I would commit to something and cancel at the last minute and made lots of people mad at me.  I knew I could work on my commitment issues, and do things I promised to do even though I didn’t want to, and while I resented having to face the consequence of my actions.  Or I could just stop committing.  Work on that issue in another lifetime.  Let people get mad at me for being noncommittal rather than for disappointing them.