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Monthly Archives: April 2013

The Yoga Zone

The other day, I had the last of three yoga teacher training graduations all happening in a single month. I’ve had four programs going at once, all of which started at different times and in different formats, but they all concluded in spring.  One was a weekend program that lasted 4 months, one was a mid-afternoon day program that lasted 9 months, one was a 6 month evening program,and one was a 4 week intensive – something I decided to try just to see if people would register for  a shorter time format.  Each program received my undivided attention as applicable, until the end, when they all happened to overlap. Made for a crazy month because I ended up working 12 hours a day, 7 days a week, for 4 weeks. It was yoga, yoga, yoga, and I didn’t know if I was coming or going.

When I was creating the schedule, I knew this month would be a challenge, but I believed each and every one of those programs were important, and I figured I could handle  anything for a month. On week three, I started to wonder if I had overestimated myself. My assistant, Melina, (a remarkably committed 27 year old who has tons of energy, a great attitude and a sincere love for her work) and I both made jokes about how ready to crash we were. But as Orion Mountain Dreamer says, “I want to know if you can get up everyday and do what you have to do to feed the children…” , a writer with a life view I very much subscribe to, so I plodded through. At least Melina and I laughed a great deal, making fun of how tired we were, our inability to say no to others, and how, even when we were exhausted, we stayed on track and did the job well. In fact, the more teaching we did, the better we seemed to be… we were emersed in the yoga zone – not a bad place to be by any measure.

When all the work is done and we are ready to send these yoga teachers off into the world, Melina and I do all we can to make each Graduation ceremony lovely. It is a significant thing to go through yoga teacher’s training, so I think it is important to mark the occasion with an “event.” 

David prepares a slide show of each group’s yoga journey, and we invite families to come witness their loved ones getting their certificate. I have each yogi “jump the mat” (they have to leap over a yoga mat to get their final certificate) and I make a short speech about what each student brought to the table and contributed to the growth process of others. I pick a special quote that defines them. We do our final circle where we each say a word that defines our state in the moment….

(This is Mike – a minister, marathon runner, soon-to-be-a-occupational therapist with a fantastic sense of humor guy who came to training after I trained his wife, a nurse. I train lots of nurses, physical therapists, and others in the medical profession. Anyway, Mike came with trepidation regarding potential religious conflicts (none of which manifested) , he admits, and now feels yoga has enhanced his life more than he imagined it could. He and his wife are good friends of David and I now. He is just one example of the unique people I get to befriend in my work.) 

We serve wine and cake and fruit and conclude with a party , and they all get their official ReFlex shirt that has the names of their tribe on the back. There are always tears, poignant commentary and lots and lots of hugs. Here are the last few slide shows for anyone who is not on facebook seeing these posted as each slide show is made. It certainly shows you my work in a day by day fashion, the diversity and joy, and the lovely people I spend time with doing something healthy, meaningful, and with purpose. They show us laughing, working, connecting, and sometimes, daydreaming…. I love my “right liveilhood.” I feel as if all my life has been a training to do this work, and to do it well.

 The first graduation was a relief. The second graduation was on my birthday. I worked 12 hours that day, but it felt like a gift to send those yogis off into the world because it meant I got my daytime hours back. Then another graduation (sending off those yogis that had been with me longest – since Sept!) and I saw true light at the end of the working tunnel. Now I am down to one last group of trainees who study in the evenings – a group that will spend 6 months studying yoga with us for three 1/2 hours a night twice a week. And then…. I will get a much needed three week break before my summer intensive. Meanwhile, I am now deep in the throes of creating a dance recital and setting choreography and working on next year’s youth schedule, but that is fodder for a different blog. Let me just say, I love the diversity of my work, combining dance and yoga, teacher’s training and student classes. I also teach journaling and work with handicapped students and fill my working life with other growth inducing experiences, such as my studies in Ayurveda science, writing articles, and organizing workshops that I usually take myself. This month we had a raw food workshop, and next weekend we are hosting an Ashtanga (a crazy advanced physical practice of yoga) event. In may, David, Melina and I will spend a weekend completing our Reiki master’s program and we will be certified to teach Reiki to others if ever my Reiki master moves on from our studio. Ya just cant’ get bored when your life is filled with intellectually stimulating, emotionally moving work that forces you to expand your awareness, tax your creativity, and connect with good people.

Back to RYT training….. I always feel worried when I finish with one group that I might have saturated the market and now,  it is possible no one is going to show up for yoga training ever again. I love, love, love this area of my work, and these programs are vital to sustaining my business financially, so it would be a huge disappointment if one or more of my trainings didn’t go. But just this week, 4 new trainees registered for the summer program  which is still months away, and another registered for next fall’s daytime program and well….. clearly, I will enjoy many more years of yoga teacher’s training. I’m expanding my program to include an advanced level (RYT-500) next October which may bring 10-20 new serious yoga teacher trainees my way. I’m deeply excited about designing and implementing that program, which will hopefully be held in the new yoga retreat center. And that means David and Melina (my right hand gal) will be my students again for a short while. Always insightful… &n
bsp;Meanwhile, I have aerial trainings, chair yoga trainings, a kiddance workshop and other training programs scheduled for the summer. Eeesh.

I get exceptionally close to the people who begin their yoga journey (or continue on it if they are already serious yogis) with me. I connect deeply with the students in the 200 hours we spend together- we devote a great deal of time not only learning about yoga, but about ourselves. My programs include Reiki training, and a three hour journaling workshop (which many tell me is the highlight and most profound part of training… I’m getting extremely good at teaching writing as a path to healing, if I say so myself. Probably because I believe in it so much.) and we spend lots of time and effort into gaining introspection on our lives. You can’t go through a transformational process such as yoga training and not feel deeply connected to “your tribe.” I have the gift of being a central part of each an every tribe that comes through our door. I’ve been the hub of  7 tribes so far – training over 100 yoga teachers since I started 18 months ago. And each of these fine teachers goes out and impacts others….  Remarkable how many lives you can touch when you find your dharma.

I always treat each tribe to a retreat day, a day outdoors where we convene with nature, do yoga under the sun, and write, nature journal and do awareness exercises. I usually take groups to a state park where I can rent a pavilion and set things up nicely, hike, canoe and grill out, but the last two groups  I decided to combine and I took them all to the beach just for a change of pace. Loved the day… I had everyone write themselves a letter regarding their intention setting, which will be sent back to them in 6 months or a year or whenever I sense the time is right. There are many special things we do to make the retreat experience special…. I can’t wait to have a formal retreat center to take this area of work  to a whole new level.

My yoga frog goes with us on every retreat. I have pictures of him in the lake where we canoe, or in the sand, or on the beach… he normally sits on a polished root table in the lobby of the studio. Melina says that someday I need to do a slide show just of the frog. (I had a second frog in my yard, but my son absconded him and took him to school (with my blessing.) I love that my son has this symbol of something that means so much to me at college with him. ) Anyway, the frog began a one of two dozen buddhas I collected for my buddha trails – I hide them in the trees for a mindfulness exercise. But the frog was the one buddha with character that made everyone smile, and he always ended up somewhere that was difficult to collect – in the water or buried by plants, or someplace unusual so it became a “thing” to get the frog. We plan to take this frog with us when we go to India and any other remote retreat places we are lucky enough to explore. He is definitely our yoga mascot and the source of many funny memories. I’ll need a special place for him when we move operations to the new retreat center.


Life is good. Busy , but good. It is good to know your place and have a purpose.The other day I read that happiness comes from selfless service, and anyone who continues to focus on their own happiness all the time in an illusive effort to capture content will forever be unhappy and frustrated. I’ve witnessed people who are forever putting their needs and dreams above the needs and dreams of other’s, and they are basically depressed and dissatisfied all the time. This encourages them to work harder to serve themselves because they feel deserving of happiness, but their choices perpetuates the cycle. Having lived with people like this, I truly believe there is something to  that “giving and working for the right reasons” theory. All I know is, if giving of your time, energy and resources to others leads to happiness, then it is no wonder I am feeling better each month that separates me from that dark  place I was a few years ago.  
Life is an ongoing lesson – thankfully, I believe I’m at long last getting the point..  

A work in progress….

I promised pictures of the new home that David and I are attempting to buy so here they are. Yesterday we had the inspection, and a few things need work, but nothing David can’t handle himself. Gosh, it sure pays to have a knowledge of plumbing, electrical work, gardening, building, etc…  when you are looking at older property. The cost of repairs or adding new outbuildings etc is only a matter of materials with David doing the work. I am so grateful of his gifts as we discuss the inspection report and what this “as is” property needs to be in great shape.
So far, things look promising, but man, are we jumping through hoops for the bank (not unusual considering the economic issues today).
Anyway, here are a few images. I’ll take you through a tour. Because there were work trucks outside of the home, I didn’t get a good shot of the actual house from the front. But you will get the idea….. the picture above gives you an idea of what you come up to after driving the initial oak lined lane. This leads to what will be our “Chakra garden, an area we plan to divide into 7 primary spots to sit and reflect, each one designed with yard art & plants to represent the 7 chakras.

A garden awaiting creation……

Big iron gates lead in from several directions. Inviting, and artistic……

The front of the house welcomes visitors with a portico that has a zen feel…. I love the big rocks, ferns and areas where we will put a buddha fountain…

There is an atrium outside our bedroom covered by this privacy wall. And everyone, my mother, David, the former owner etc.. has stood outside and said, “Um… you can get rid or cover that design if you want…. it’s pretty silly….. ” Meanwhile, I’m thinking, “Get rid of the crazy moon man smoking his weed ? You have to be kidding. He’s my favorite part!” OK, the hippy in me has to be honest.. I love the tiled funky design of the moon man. It’s a conversation piece if nothing else! I’m thinking it just needs a landscape light so it shows up at night too.

Next to the house, we hope to dig out a big pond… perhaps some koi…. definitely some floating lotus or other blooming plants…. and a waterfall!!!! Can’t skip that.

All the Doors and details of the house are handmade by a craftsmen…. the doors, stair railings, hoods, door handles etc are unique with stain glass windows, handmade blacksmith handles, etc… A local blacksmith made the grate for the fireplace, hooks for coats and railings too.

Walking in the front door, I feel like, “Ah… home…..”

Most of the indoor living will take place in this great room – and yes, that is a hole in the wall that is open to the master bedroom. Um…… must behave or put some kind of artistic glasswork in the hold, I’m thinking…..  I adore the off center, fireplace hand done iron work, and great natural light and huge beams in the ceiling….

It took me 54 years and three kitchen remodels where the one thing I wanted most and begged for (but was unable to have since it wasnt’ something my partner considered important  to at long last finally have a kitchen that has two full sized ovens! I am crazy excited. This kitchen also has a wine cooler, a nice oversized fridge, creative storage by way of uniquely designed cupboards, and a trash compactor…. I love the shelves around the windows for growing herbs… really everything is great but the stove is unusual. It is magnetic, so I have to cook on cast iron or special copper bottomed pots. David and I have to get rid of our great cookery to be able to use that stove. That will take some adjustment….. but how fun to have a cooks kitchen.
It amazes me that this casual kitchen, while not an expensive, top of the line kitchen, feels so special. David always says life doesn’t have to be so be so hard, filled with drama or conflict. Ya just gotta trust and learn to swim downstream with the current rather than fighting it all the time. Then life gives you what you want most… I’m learning that from him… remarkable how that one approach to living changes everything….
Happiness is natural and easy.

The bedroom master has wood floors and beams, and lovely papered walls that is like raw hay – nice closets and a fascinating bathroom that is like a hallway leading to the biggest shower I ever saw. It has two shower heads. I guess I am suppose to challenge David to a shower war!

Neva was complaining ab out the 20 minute drive to this house from our current house, until she saw her room… another master, it is big and opens to a private bathroom and a closet the size of her room now wit all these classy built ins for shoes, clothes and drawers. I’m jealous, but when she goes to college I’ll invade and take over! We have a third bedroom with another bathroom within, but is is small and doesn’t merit a pix. Still, nice to have for when my son or future grandchildren visit…. David’s son just might grace us with a visit too and he has children that I have no doubt would love to play with some chickens or explore a treehouse… 

The kitchen opens to a lovely screened deck. It features a hottub, covered area and a cool zen fountain…. the walkway you see leads around the inner deck, but leads as well to the yoga center which I’ll show next.

Now, the home is just for us, but an important part of making this plan affordable is that we will be using this property for yoga training, retreats and other business pursuits, such as farm to table health dinners, writing and journaling classes, etc…. Rather than expand my business again in the strip mall, we will go this new direction – a nice balance of combining our dream for living off the grid a bit and building business that we love and enjoy and can perhaps keep in semi retirement someday too, all rolled into one creative project. This building is behind the house – we will call it the yoga center. Love how it is made with refurbished materials – the windows once belonged to an old schoolhouse.

The reception area is all wood and perfectly designed for offices. It will feature a yoga, writing, and organic living library (getting huge now) and a couch  to relax. We will also have some of the organic products on display hear like natural soaps, essential oils, yoga materials etc…
A second room features space for an art journaling center, and this has a fridge and freezer, and space for other creative materials for art classes or whatnot. This leads to a seperate fenced area that we will use for a huge fire pit and outdoor yoga practice.

A big beautiful studio space seems as if it was build for yoga training. With natural light, warm wood walls a towering ceiling, all it needs is perhaps a new wood floor. Inspirational! It will old a good twenty yogis, and perhaps can be used for other sorts of classes too. Love it!

Storage awaits all the stuff we can’t put elsewhere, including tables and chair for events and writing classes etc… and the yoga center leads to another fenced area of it’s own. All secluded and private so there are no distractions other than the sound of birds.

(I suppose our firepit will be right where that rotted stump is…) This back area opens to another fence that leads to a creek down in a ravine. We have two acres beyond the creek but it will be some time until we will be in a financial and time position to clear and use that wild area. But, we are thinking we will build a suspension bridge over the creek and make some housing there – either yurts or small cabins when we are ready to expand to make this retreat offer overnight lodging too. I said to David, “Isn’t building a suspension bridge going to be complicated and expensive”…. but he said, “Um.. I’m an engineer. That is what engineers do… and it won’t cost much at all, just some cable, wood, a weekend of sweat…” Amazing. 

A short walk from the yoga center is the barn (big grin on my face, as you can imagine.) It has electricity and water, and is just perfect in every way for a hobbyist farmer….. We plan to put a workshop for David in the large closed-in space and will probably expand it eventually to be even bigger. I still have a tack room, and three stalls and covered areas for whatever else we might want to do there… The barn opens to two pasters. One is lit, which would be great for an outdoor evening riding ring, but I’m not wanting horses on this small a piece of land…. Instead we are looking into building a labyrinth there that can be lit up at night. The other paster might house a pet… a mini donkey or alpaca perhaps? But not until my work life is organized and running smoothly. The first order of business will be making this retreat center a place of healing and learning.

If you can imagine it, picture tables with linens and china and dozens of flame lit torches for a special farm to table dinner event. (And a wedding ya know…) We are not a farm, but we will be growing tons of ayurveda herbs and we will feature lectures and classes on organic eating and health and wellness and the area farms will provide the actual food we don’t grow, so I am convinced I can expand the yoga offerings to include this kind of retreat….. Fun!

The grounds feature long lanes of oaks where we will hang hammocks, porch swings etc… areas for journaling and meditating everywhere. I am not going to show you another big open area (this is simply taking too long to download all the pix) but to the left corner of this lane will be our Indian medicine wheel garden, herbs and citrus. It amazes me that the property has water everywhere to support  these ideas!

I have more pictures, but no time and this is enough to give you the basic feel of the place. For now, I must go get my daughter from school then head into work for a yoga teacher graduation ceremony. 
I feel so lucky to have a partner that shares my vision and willingness to work crazy hard for a dream. 
All I need is a direction and I found one…. I found several in fact….
Wish us luck…….

Crazy how long I spent posting this today on the off chance that my daughter someday will check in curious about how my life is unfolding. In case she does let me just say this, “I love you, Denver.”

Ready, Set, Live !

If there is one thing life has taught me in 54 years, it is to take your time when making important decisions.
It’s easy to get into relationships, but very hard to get out of them.
Easy to buy a house, but very hard to sell one.
Easy to start a business and sign a lease, but very hard to do what it takes to make a business work. 
Easy to spend money, but hard to earn it.
Easy to make plans and dream, but hard to follow through on all the inspirational talk.

For many years I lived with someone who was inclined to act impulsively. In some ways, riding the wave of his enthusiasm and embracing his romanticized vision of himself and life was fun. Life was this daring, wild rollercoaster that included abrupt changes of direction and leaps of faith. Occasionally, things worked out, and this reinforced our belief that the “Universe provides” or “Without great risk you will never get great rewards,”  but in retrospect, I think we occasionally got lucky, and that luck supported our foolish behavior rather that teaching us practical lessons. Eventually, we didn’t accurately see the truth of how and why things worked out for us, and we certainly didn’t embrace gratitude or appreciation for those that helped make our achievements possible.  We just chalked our successes up to our being talented artists or smart or special. But time and distance helps to see things clearly, and in retrospect, I see that most of our history is seeped in loss, heartache, and feelings of being trapped or not really having a choice due to cages of our own design. We lived in a constant state of chaos, worry, and stress – all a result of acting without careful thought or patience, shifting gears randomly, and not thoroughly exploring issues under the surface or waiting for the initial excitement to subside to gain honest perspective. Delusion and ego fueled our belief that we could defy practical odds and would end up OK. In the end, impulsive acts and random choices destroyed our lives, our family suffered financially, emotionally, and in every other way you could count. That is a sad story, and not something that needs revisiting, so suffice to say, like most people my age, life has taught me important lessons the hard way.

Once I was on my own, I couldn’t help but celebrate that I was finally free to follow my own instincts. I could forge a practical plan with good odds, play my own devil’s advocate and prepare for wrenches in the plan, then proceed with caution towards happiness. Best of all, I could do this without being accused of lacking faith or being a bubble buster. I was delighted to regain control of my life without guilt or worry that my practical nature was stifling someone else’s dreams. I felt empowered by the fact that whatever plans I made I could follow through to the end, as long as I had the fortitude and determination to do so. This doesn’t mean I stopped taking risks or leaps of faith, but being on my own allowed me the time and space to really explore what I wanted from life and redefine my own priorities. This should have been easy, but was in fact hard, because when you spend years and years making someone else’s dreams and happiness the top priority of your world, you become numb to your own needs.

I was an emotional mess for a long time, and I see that as a gift now, because it kept me from attaching to whoever came along.  Had I married the first person (or second or third) that I dated after becoming single in a quest to fast track my life to domestic bliss (which would have made things easier financially and emotionally so it was tempting, let me tell you) I would no doubt be stuck in an unhappy situation now, and perhaps even facing another divorce. I cared very much for each of the lovely men I dated, and yet, I knew I wasn’t ready to make a decision regarding love and commitment when I was still reeling from feelings of loss, resentment and sadness over my family’s demise.  Everyone seems like a great potential mate when they are putting on their “A game” but it takes time to really know someone, and see if they are all they first appear. So I curtailed every relationship as it started getting too meaty and continued to insist “I need space & time to heal.”  Let me point out that I didn’t WANT space, because I was lost, lonely, and feeling unloved, and the best cure for heartache is to hook up with someone who thinks you’re special. But still, I recognized my NEED for time to heal before making another man’s dreams and desires my life’s priority. 

When I met David, I instantly saw he had all the qualities I respected and most wanted in a mate. He was kind, socially & morally conscious, liberal, educated, creative, healthy, fit and sporty, sexual, open minded, immensely talented, sensitive, and as my mother says, “perfect for you because he is your  intellectual  equal.” (This always makes me laugh; because David is a genius and the most intellectual person I’ve ever met who doesn’t come across as pretentious or obnoxious.) I am deeply flattered by her comparison, but I don’t consider myself his intellectual equal. I do however, very much appreciate being with someone who has so much knowledge about the world, is quick to research new ideas, can creatively brainstorm like there is no tomorrow, and who listens to NPR as much as I do and likes to come home, pour us a glass of wine and start conversations with “I heard this great interview on NPR while driving home about (fill in the blank) and wondered what you would think about it.”  If a shared curiosity about the world, an inclination to read & research, and a mutual love of learning makes people good partners, then we are indeed well matched.

Nevertheless, as my relationship with David grew, I still kept him at arm’s length. He asked me to marry him and I accepted a ring as a sign of my long term good intention, but I really couldn’t imagine going through with an official ceremony. I didn’t want to be with anyone else but him, but still, I couldn’t imagine calling anyone other than Mark Hendry my HUSBAND. That title just seemed too poignant and intimate to pass on to someone other than the guy I had spent twenty years working beside, sleeping beside, making babies with, interacting with each other’s families, etc…  Even when Mark got married the very week of our divorce to the first and only other woman he has ever dated (I was his first and only girlfriend until then, unless you count a one night stand he had at the end of our marriage) I couldn’t get past the belief that marriage was sacred and a HUGE commitment that must only be offered to someone who you love so deeply and with such integrity that you absolutely believe no one else could ever earn the title. I was hurt that I was so easily and readily replaced by the very first gal that came along, because it made me feel my entire marriage was a farce, just a random act of convenience to a guy who didn’t set the bar all that high when it came to selecting a mate. But more than that, I was jealous because I wanted to move on emotionally as he so easily did, but I just couldn’t.  I just couldn’t imagine calling David or anyone else “husband” ever. Mark was my husband… a dirty-rotten-stinker-glad-to-be-out-of-my-life-because-he-caused-nothing but-grief-and-hardship husband, but my husband nevertheless. (I say that with a smile, for the record. I’m not seriously bashing my ex.)

Poor David. After over a year of dating, I agreed to move in with him, but even so, I only wanted to move into a house my family owned, one that I could afford alone if ever we split up. I just wouldn’t put myself in a situation where my life (and my daughter’s) would again be disrupted or I couldn’t afford to take action and kick the boyfriend to the curb if things didn’t work out. This semi-commitment had to be frustrating to David, but he is a wise and patient man and more than once he’s said, “I want you heart and soul, with no reservations or compromises involved. I will wait until you are ready.” Meanwhile it was hard on me, because I was killing myself to financially hold up my end of bills. I did not want to owe David anything or start depending on him.

For a year plus, David and I have lived together, exploring the ebb and flow of life as a couple. Watching him handle work, housework, my daughter, me and all my moods and idiosyncrasies, career challenges, the stress of my demanding business, and all the mundane details of life such as who takes out the trash, whether or not he snores, or how he responds to family holiday expectations, has assured me that all the surface stuff I loved about him in the beginning was not smoke and mirrors. He wasn’t on his “A game”. David only has an A game. I have now seen David sick, tired, in a good and a bad mood. I’ve witnessed his grace and patience when my daughter is difficult, watched him handle money responsibly and discovered that no matter how angry, hurt, or frustrated he might be, he never, ever will speak to me or treat me with anything less than respect and tenderness. Being treated with consideration in a relationship is HUGELY important to me at this stage in life.

Meanwhile, my business has been unfolding with similar tentative action & slow exploration. I have worked crazy hard to get a footing in an economy that is very challenging. I have not caved to frustration and nurtured opportunity while my business takes shape and finds a voice.  My school is not what I originally imagined it would be- and by that I do not mean better or worse.  Just different.  My constant evaluation of priorities and my commitment to “right livelihood” has resulted in a business that fills me with a sense of purpose.  The point is, after several years of being tentative about decisions while I heal my life, I have become very sure of what I want. And I have grown strong again.

This summer my three year business lease expires. So I have been thinking a great deal about how to get my life moving in positive, exciting directions. The thought of signing another expensive lease that forces me to work this hard for another three years just to help my landlord make money while I struggle is killing me. I know that I should do all I can to purchase a commercial building so my hard work has an eventual return, but I am not financially capable of that step just yet, since they want 20% down and every building that would suit my business costs a million dollars or more. (Lord knows, I’ve met with bankers, realtors and others to seek out my options.)  I also have been thinking about what I want in my relationship, because my choices in regard to work will influence my love life too. My business choices influences levels of stress, time management, and how much I can financially contribute to our building a life together. I just can’t afford to act impulsively knowing that every choice a person makes regarding where they live, who they live with, how they live, what they do, and their overall attitude and priorities is connected. Our lives are the result of our choices. And our lives touch the lives of others and determines their happiness and safety too.

For a year, while pondering all the options, I have looked at buildings. I’ve looked at houses David and I might purchase together as an act of true commitment.  I have crunched the numbers to really understand my business. I’ve looked into dividing the school into two different businesses, selling part or all of it. I have also considered expanding the business and considered getting bigger and more involved, perhaps opening a preschool too. I’ve built up my credit, kept good records, and gotten established “just in case.” I’ve thought about when and if I ever want to retire.  The thing is, I have many many options in my life today because I’ve taken my time, held back to let the dust settle, worked diligently,  and I’ve acted slowly and mindfully to explore what I want, heart, soul and mind. Most importantly, I’ve acted responsibly, creatively and carefully in a quest to keep options flowing. My choices are not easy or simple, but at least I have choices.

But being cautious and moving slow, while good in a way, also means missed opportunity. You can’t drag your feet forever if you want to accomplish anything of merit, and anyone who knows me well understands it is NOT in my nature to be patient or move slowly on anything. Some days, I feel like a race horse that has been detained in the starting gate, stamping her feet as she waits for the gun to go off so she can run freely. Oh, how I miss running with absolute commitment to a distant finish line!

Suddenly, recently, if feels as if the gun has gone off. While exploring land for potential retreat sites (after giving up on a commercial building) David and I stumbled upon a piece of property that seemed to pull everything together. The moment we snuck over the gate illegally (we couldn’t help it, we drove up and saw our dream come true and we had to explore the property even before calling the realtor.) we knew this was where we belong. We had a found an answer to our home and business dilemma at once. This land spoke to us.

A week later David and I bought the property– well, we made an offer and it was accepted. We are now waiting for bank approval, but we have plans we believe will make it happen even if we hit a stumbling blocks. God willing, we are buying 8 acres of land with a barn, a separate yoga building and room for gardens, trails, outbuildings and more.  It is everything I’ve ever wanted in a home, and in fact, it’s the kind of artistic, rustic home I dreamed we were going to build when I sold my business years ago to retire and live “the dream”. This property is only 18 miles from ReFlex just around the corner from one of my previous businesses in Lakewood ranch. It is nestled in nature, a perfect site for retreats, yoga trainings, Ayurveda product manufacturing, farm to table dinners and so much more that I envision my business adding. For David, there is a workshop and space to create furniture, build a boat or whatever. For me there is a place to raise chickens, bees, and perhaps even bring home a donkey as a new life mascot. With a small creek on the land, pastures, space for gardens, huge oak trees and unique, artistic outbuildings, this place offers David and me both a chance to blend love, work & personal interest so we can live creatively and in harmony with nature.

In my next post, I’ll share our vision and a few pictures of our (hopefully) soon to be new home & business site. For now I am buried in books, studying how to build a labyrinth in nature, a medicine wheel, the ins and outs of Florida garden design, retreat planning and more. Every dream begins in planning stages – takes shape with research.

I’m ready for someone to open the gates! It is time to let the ole mare run!