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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Week 2: Days 7-13

Day 7: Brad the Shaman

Yes, I see a Shaman and by the way he is AMAZING!  I had a session with him yesterday at Unique Perceptions in Spruce Grove, which was a real unexpected treat as he had moved away to Victoria this summer.  Due to some unforeseen circumstances, Brad found himself back in the area and I jumped at the chance to see him again.  Each and every time I see Brad a get some powerful insights about my life and about my spiritual evolution and path.  He will often do energy work on me as well as some journeying which I find to be super insightful.  The session also helped me to integrate and make sense of a lot of the experiences that I had in Nordegg.  Thank you Brad for the selfless work you do and for committing your life to one of SERVICE.  I am humbled and grateful.

Day 8: Eoin Finn's Vinyasa Earth Puja & Shane Philip

Back in October, I had committed to a weekend yoga workshop at Lion's Breath Yoga with Eoin Finn.  Then, when I found out that we were moving this month I went back and forth (and back and forth) about the decision to cancel my registration or not to cancel my registration.  After much deliberation, I decided that I needed to go.  And WOW, am I ever glad that I did!  It was a great workshop that ran both Friday night and Saturday during the day.  Friday night (and Day 8 of my project) was especially blissful.  We discussed a 'branch' of yoga philosophy that totally resonated with me and moved, flowed, sweated, meditated and shared energy with one purpose in mind: Puja (or offering) to Mother Earth.  It was magical.  Then, on my long trek home on the dark, winter roads, I CRANKED Shane Philip's EarthShake album and ROCKED OUT!  By the time I got home I was so full of bliss that I literally could not keep it from flowing out of me!  (Not that I would want to hog it all to myself anyway!)  The real gift or lesson here? (apart from these two amazing beings who helped me to make this happen)  Knowing that by filling my OWN cup, I can help to fill the cups of everyone around me!  Thank you Eoin and Shane :)


Day 9: My parents

EcoCatLady said it best: "I also think you should consider yourself extremely lucky to have parents that you actually WANT to be near".  Isn't that the TRUTH?  If you have been following along of late, you will know that my parents have made the move off the farm into town.  We now live about a 20 minute drive from each other... and after living next door to them for 6 years I have to say that it feels like an ETERNITY away!  Much too far.  Luckily it is only for a very short time.  We will be about a 2 minute drive away from them in only about a week's time, when we finally make the move into town.  What's so great about them?  Um, EVERYTHING?!  They are our best friends!  They are so much fun to hang out with, they are super loving, accepting and helpful, they treat Chephren as if he was their own child (in a good way!), and make our lives better in every possible way.  Do I know that we are beyond fortunate to enjoy this type of relationship with them?  Absolutely.  Do I say it enough?  No.  So, mom and dad/grammy and grampy: THANK YOU from the botton of my heart and soul.  I love and appreciate you to the moon and BACK! 

Day 10: The PURGE begins

I have discovered something about myself... I actually like to get rid of stuff even more than I like to receive it.  Hmmmm.... Since this is a blog about receiving gifts... do you think that my gift for today can be getting rid of my excess?  How is that for a mind-bending thought?

Day 11: Depression day

For the first time in this project, I had to work hard to see the gift in anything today.  I mentioned in an earlier post that I have been battling with depression for most of my adult life (but especially since having a child) and I still have some 'dark days'.  Today was one of those days.  The gift of this is that it literally only lasted one day... I have such a good handle on what my depression looks like, feels like and where it's going that I can actually take myself out of the downward spiral before it even begins. 
Day 12: You're not going to believe what I did today

Today I feel grateful that it isn't yesterday :)  Is that allowed?  I don't care because it's true.  Aside from the gift of a new day, I received a lot of other gifts today.  This (even to me) sounds a bit odd, given the fact that I was out Christmas shopping and buying gifts for other people instead of the other way around.  I should start off by saying that I don't normally do this (like, pretty much ever).  I generally don't 'do malls', I try not to 'do consumerism' and I prefer it that way.  Normally, I handmake most of my gifts and/or support local farmers/artisans and buy all things handmade and local.  At the very least, I try to stay out of the big shops and buy from all of the little businesses in our town.  Of course there are exceptions to every rule, but my goal is to stick within these parameters.  This year, I didn't totally 'blow it': I bought a lot of my gifts in Maui at local craft fairs, and of course, I stocked up at the local potter's guild when I got home, but I definitely had to buy more 'stuff' than usual to finish off my list.  Soooo, today, on December 20th, that meant going to the mall (sigh).  Rather than beat myself up about it (which is totally like me), I decided to phone up my sister and recruit her to help me.  Not only did she help me, but I actually had FUN (shhhhhhhhhh!  Don't tell anyone!)  She is a great gift-buyer (I skill that has always eluded me) and our trip was purposeful, efficient and actually enjoyable.  (I can't believe that I am confessing all of this on a blog that began as a project designed to AVOID SHOPPING ENTIRELY!  I completely understand if you think that I am a sell out and delete me from your reading lists!)  Before you do though, just read this one last thought: What I am really grateful for is the fact that I CAN do this.  I know how very fortunate I am to be able to go and frivolously/freely purchase gifts for my loved ones without even a care in the world.  This is an insanely huge privilege/luxury (aka GIFT) that I do not take for granted.  Thank you Universe for the tremendous amount of ABUNDANCE in my life and may I continue to find new and creative ways of sharing it with others...

Day 13: The Abundance continues, aka the glass is way MORE than half full

I don't know if I have talked about his before, but I have 8 parents.  (Just think, if I were a reality-tv-show star I would be 'octodaughter', oh man, that was a lame one, this time of year must be getting to me!).  I know, I know, you're thinking, 8 parents?  What the heck is this girl talking about?!  So here it is: My biological mom and dad divorced and both re-married (that's 4)... then, I married a man whose biological parents did the same thing (except for his dad, but 'septodaughter' doesn't sound as cool!).  So, Trent and I both have: A mom, a dad, a stepmom, a stepdad, a mother-in-law, a father-in-law, and I have a step-father-in-law and he has a step-mother-in-law.  Plus, Trent's dad does have a partner so it really does make 8.  You with me so far?  Now... close your eyes and picture this... Christmas with 4 DIFFERENT FAMILIES (and all of their families) EVERY.  SINGLE.  YEAR!!!  Did your brain explode?  Mine nearly does.  For 2 weeks of each year, our lives take on a whole new level of crazy.  Don't get me wrong, I love our families, they are wonderful, kind and generous.  Generous being the key word.  Each gathering involves a huge meal at someone's house (or in my aunt's case - she pays for ALL of us to have a nice meal out together because there are too many of us for one house!), and of course, tons and tons of presents.  We have had several gatherings so far this season, and the 'receiving' is well under way.  Again, this is normally something that I REALLY struggle with but this year, I am deciding to reframe it and simply feel grateful for ALL of the gifts I receive.  Thank you, thank you, thank you Universe for blessing me with more loving family members than I know what to do with (and all of the wonderful craziness that goes with it!)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Days 1-6 of The Receiving Project

Day 1: Music Jam/Drumming session with Chephren

In the midst of a crazy emtional day of moving my parents to their house in town - Chephren and I retreated home for a quick lunch break.  Sensing that I was quickly losing the 'inner stillness' leftover from Maui, tried to bring in some peace via meditation.  Too amped up for meditation (it tends to work best after asana practice), I decided that a chanting/drumming/dancing session was in order.  Chephren seemed to agree as he danced, drummed and sang right along with me.  He even had all of his toys dancing!  The next day, he pointed to his toys (yes, they were still in a pile, hey, we're moving!) and said, "Those are my happy dance toys mom!"  A worthy first gift from the Universe, no?

Day 2: Teaching Yoga - an act of Service

I have been reading the yoga Sutras lately and one of the Sutras jumped at me (I.5); it basically says that we should analyze our thoughts/deeds and try to cultivate only selfless thoughts (and actions).  Well for me, teaching yoga is an act of service, in other words, a selfless act.  To be honest, to date, I haven't totally loved the experience.  But what I realized recently is that I had been teaching from the wrong place - from ego instead of my heart.  I was always worried about/wrapped up in what people would think of the way I taught.  I was always fretting about not being 'good enough' to teach yoga.  Looking back on that way of thinking, it seems like a distant, well-meaning but totally ill-placed train of thought.  I have begun the process of switching from this train of non-productive thought (and really quite selfish way of thinking) to one of selflessness.  I set the intention at the beginning of each of my classes that my words/thoughts/actions will be of the highest service for all of those participating in the class and that each person attending will get exactly what they need from coming.  In other words, I really just want people to get the most out of their yoga practice.  By simply making that switch in my own being, gone are the worries and the anxiety that used to come with every class I taught.  Sound simple?  It really is.  And this shift in thinking is gift number 2 from the Universe.

Day 3: Many hands make light work

If you read my 'Quick Update' post, you will know that both my parents and Trent and I are attempting to move off the farm this month.  Couple this with the fact that we have been gone for the month of November and the house that Trent and I are moving into also needs to be moved out of, and well, you can just imagine the kind of stress/extra workload that we are exposed to on a daily basis.  Anyway, this past Friday and Saturday we focused on helping out my parents and I am pleased to report that they are mostly moved in to their new house.  So, Trent and I decided to spend Sunday trying to get ourselves organized for our move as well.  We began at the new house which, as I mentioned also needs to be moved out of first, before any of our moving can take place.  We also have a few details to fix up before moving in as well and eventually, we'll finish the basement but that is another post entirely.  Anyway, between Trent's Dad, his partner, Trent and myself, we managed to get the kitchen almost entirely packed up and cleaned out!  It was a job that I was kind of dreading but turned out to be actually quite satisfying and enjoyable.  Many hands truly do make light work so THANK YOU for the extra help and adding joy to the experience!

Day 4: Nordegg

Got up early Monday morning and drove to Nordegg with Chephren.  The plan was to spend some time with some close friends and soak up some mountain energy.  Chephren was great company for the entire car ride and as soon as those mountains were in view we both knew that we had come 'home'.  Chephren talked about Nordegg almost daily while we were in Maui and there is no question how drawn he is to the area.  I feel the same way.  Really feeling grateful for this place and the fact that we are building a house there.  Thank you Universe for bringing this tiny little town and community into our lives and hearts!

Day 5: Great Food... Great Friends... Super GRATEFUL

The time spent with my friends was AMAZING.  These women (and you too Chris!) filled my cup so much so that I have a renewed sense of purpose, vigor, inner stillness and peace.  I feel ready for the tasks/challenges that lay ahead as well as the gifts that continue to flow in.  Plus, I didn't even have to cook dinner tonight :)  Thank you all for an amazing day!  (P.S.  I also received a Chakra-clearing set from Ken - so thank you for the very thoughtful and generous gift Ken)

Day 6: Home Sweet Home

As much as I love being in Nordegg (and I greatly look forward to the day when we live there permanently), it is always nice to come home to comfortable surroundings.  The fire in the woodstove, my warm and comfy bed and my wonderful husband.  Today's gift is all about being grateful for what I get to have every. single. day. 

Chephren - also happy to be home!

Stay tuned for more Gifts from the Universe!


The Receiving Project

'Tis the season for Giving/Receiving gifts.  If you have been following my blog for any amount of time, you will know that I am not a huge fan of this process as traditionally it has been associated with a tremendous amount of excess/consumerism/greed/waste, etc.  So when I found out about The Receiving Project from a friend, I was super excited to get involved and spread the word.  Here is what this project is all about (excerpts taken from the e-mail that I received from my friend):

The gist of The Receiving Project is that you declare your intention to receive a gift from the universe everyday for 32 days. This can come in any and every form. If you feel like it's a gift that you were able to receive then it counts.

To set your intention, it may be helpful to say it out loud, say it to yourself, read it or write it. I find it helpful to do this everyday. But that is not necessary. There is no right or wrong way to do this project. The intention that I set is, "It is my intention to receive gifts of loving from The Universe."

Throughout the days, be aware of what gifts show up in your life. These can come in all shapes and sizes! Allow yourself to be surprised, as setting the intention to receive presents is a powerful beacon of attraction! This isn't necessarily about receiving something specific. Just be open to the goodness in The Universe and see what shows up.

Click here to find out more about The Receiving Project or check out their page on Facebook.

I am already on Day 7 of the Project and will be posting my first entry shortly.

Here is to receiving gifts that are meaningful and authentic.

Feel the BLISS!


Quick update

Lots of change happening here on the the old Hasse Ranch (or as my friend recently wrote as he addressed our Christmas card 'La Hassienda' -- don't know why I never thought of that before, love it!).  I have started a new project (I know what you are thinking, what NOW? But it is a much simpler project than the last one, believe me), and before I start posting about it, I was feeling like I needed to update my readers briefly (okay, let's be honest, am I ever brief?  No, but I am going to give it a shot).

So, here is what is UP:
  • I am going to use point form to help me keep it brief (this girl is thinking this fine, frigid morning!)
  • We are moving.  (Can I please get a yahoo?)  We are moving into the nearest town - Stony Plain into Trent's Dad's house.  It is a LOOOONG story how this all came to be, and I won't bore you with the details but the bottom line is: Smaller house + Less Driving + Opportunity to PURGE my material life = Blissful Me!
  • My parents are also moving - check that, have MOVED.  Also into Stony Plain and will be living 1.5 miles away from us.  Yes, I measured and yes, it is going to feel like half a world away, but we are telling ourselves it is SHORT TERM!
  • I spent the month of November in Maui.  I didn't blog because I wanted to 'disconnect' from technology and 'reconnect' with 'Le Nature'.  It was amazing.  I did outside yoga almost daily, watched the sunset over the ocean many, many times, went parasailing, went diving, went whale watching, and spent a glorious amount of time by the pool and on the beach with my family.  In other words, I spent most of the month feeling inner bliss.  (And no, I am not overjoyed to be back home in Canada, but I am getting used to it!)

I think that's about it.  See?  Brief.


Oh... the Project.  Nope.  Not telling.  I am working on the first post right now and you will have to wait for it.  Not long though, I promise ;)

Here's to CHANGE!

Marebare xoxo