Saturday, December 31, 2011

Last day of the year 2011

Took an awesome hike with my hubby and Monty today. Gorgeous 40 degree weather. We tried to get moving a bit quicker and do some steep hills as both of us have committed to getting back in shape this year. We have a 30th wedding anniversary coming and have booked a trip to Costa Rica where we will spend all of our time hiking around the jungle. I want to feel like a million bucks for this trip and enjoy every moment!

I've already set my goals for the year on my birthday. So no need for resolutions.

I want to say that I'm deeply grateful for all the good things in my life. I have an amazing husband, 4 awesome sons, great family, lots of friends, Monty, food on the table, roof over our heads,bills paid and many adventures awaiting us in the coming year. Happy 2012!

Friday, December 30, 2011

Simplifying the Holidays

Brown Paper Wrapping

Simple Holiday Tree

Wild Greens

XMas Eve Tree for the Birds

Goodies for the wild birds

This year I tried to simplify our family holiday traditions. It isn't easy letting go of the past and embracing a newer more peaceful less commercial season. I plan on furthering the simplifying next year. I realized what I love best about this time of year, is the time we have with our family and friends. If I spend every available bit of energy getting things done so that others can have a wonderful time, where does that leave me? Exhausted and unable to enjoy any of it. I'm not going to spend the rest of my life taking care of everyone but me. I am going to further cut back next year.

I did decorate my bird tree with lots of goodies, and I love that tradition just as much as the very first year I started doing it. This year we picked out a smaller Xmas tree and I filled it with all my bird ornaments, it was my dream tree! I loved decorating the tree for the first time ever. I actually enjoyed the process. I am the only one in my home who puts up and takes down tree, so why do it for anyone else? They don't care what I do with it. I decorated the outdoor Window boxes and baskets with wild greens and berries that the birds can eat. Hubby put up his big wreath on the barn, which is his favorite tradition. He also baked a couple kinds of cookies that HE enjoys. I wrapped all the gifts in brown paper that is recyclable, no one said a word about it. We threw a Winter Solstice Bon-Fire party up at our Tipi. I think that was our favorite night. Being out in Nature and grateful for all that we have filled us with so much love. Next year I am going to make a suggestion to our family and friends that no gifts should be exchanged, instead make a commitment to meet everyone at a restaurant or each others homes during the year and enjoy a special meal together. Same cost, just less stress for all of us! I am also not going to do cards again. I feel they are a big waste of paper, and with facebook email and the phone....I keep up with everyone I care about on a daily basis.

My newest tradition was celebrating the Festival of Lights. Each day I would light a candle that focuses on a Pantheist value which corresponds to the value focused on in each month of the year. It is simple, beautiful and reminds me just how blessed I am. The tradition starts with the Solstice and continues until the New Year. Love it.

12/20-The Universe (Jan)
12/21-Nature (Feb)
12/22-The Environment (March)
12/23-Humanity (April)
12/24-Love (May)
12/25-Unity (June)
12/26 Freedom (July)
12/27-Virtue (August)
12/28-Peace (Sept)
12/29-Beauty (Oct)
12/30-Knowledge (Nov)
12/31-Joy (Dec)

Festival of Lights

Despite having the major loss of my beloved Petey and then going through the death of my wonderful step brother with my mother and stepfather, my life is good.

I am feeling extremely blessed and grateful for all of 2011. I am happy to be back to my old self, I missed being full of joy and a sense wonder for each blessed day that I'm given here on this beautiful earth.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Happy Winter Solstice!

Tonight we celebrate the Winter Solstice at the Tipi with friends and family. I'm looking forward to celebrating the real meaning of the season, being with those we love out in nature. I have all the goodies ready for my annual bird tree.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Birthday Bucket List

Yesterday was my 52nd Birthday. Not the best of birthdays having to spend it locked in my office doing a payroll down in Spring Valley. I am grateful for having a job, and for my hubby having another successful year. There are many who are suffering greatly right now. Working is good. I did have lots of birds at my feeder all day long, which is always awesome. On Wednesday we had a Peregrine Falcon fly and land on a tower just behind work. Exciting sighting for me, and I'm sure one with a message. Yesterday morning work I took Monty up to our land with an offering for the birds who live near the tipi, lots of seed, corn and a suet cake. I went over to Petey's grave and thought about my wish from last years birthday candles....I wished that Petey would be with me for another birthday. Sadly we all know that didn't happen. I do need to be grateful for everyone else in my life who spent that birthday with me last year, they are all alive and healthy. I am indeed blessed. My life is full of so many people that I love and who love me. It's ok for me to be sad and miss my Petey, but it isn't ok to forget the infinite blessings of this life that I've been more then lucky to have come my way. Souls come and go in our lives, each with the possibility of teaching us new lessons, but only if we are open to the possibility of receiving them. I'm open and ready. Thank you for a wonderful year, I feel full and blessed.

Bucket list for 53rd year:

2. Do my volunteer work at CLP
3. Continue to Simplify my life
4. Get in shape again, sick and tired of feeling so weak and achy
5. Mind my own backyard
6. Be grateful everyday for everything
7. Stop spending so much time online, get up and out there
8. Embrace the paleo eating lifestyle completely. Eat: Meat, Fish, Eggs, Nuts, Veggies & Fruit
9. Trip with hubby to celebrate our 30th anniversary....Costa Rica
10. Be HAPPY!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Monday, December 5, 2011

Red Girls

I continue to see my baby girls every day. There are at least 3 of them hanging around each with different territories now. Knowing they are out there free and wild makes all the hard work of rehabbing so worth it.

Kimberton visit

Love seeing all the farm animals. I feel like a kid again when I'm around them, and my heart tells me to become a vegetarian again!

This past weekend we visited our oldest son at his Americorp assignment at Camphill Village in Kimberton PA. What an amazing place for him to be spending a year. This is the description of what the village is all about from their website:

Located on 432 acres of farm, gardens and woodlands in Chester County, Pennsylvania, Kimberton Hills is also a local center for culture and a model for sound ecological living.

Founded in 1972, Kimberton Hills is part of the international Camphill Movement. Developed by Karl Koenig, M.D. in 1940, the first Camphill village was started in Scotland. Camphill now includes over 100 independent communities in more than 20 countries on four continents. The communities value service, sharing, spiritual nourishment, and recognition of each individual’s gifts, and offers a model of renewal for the wider society. Camphill communities include children, youth and adults with developmental disabilities, as well as those with societal and personal vulnerabilities.

Rudolf Steiner (1861 to 1925)
Dr. Koenig and the Camphill movement were inspired by Anthroposophy, the work of Rudolf Steiner, Ph.D. (1861-1925), an Austrian scientist, philosopher and educator. Anthroposophy is a contemporary path of self-transformation which enables people to be in the world in a fuller way and to contribute to healthy social and ecological endeavors. Anthroposophy embraces a view of the human being which recognizes the spiritual nature and wholeness of individuals, regardless of handicapping conditions.

OUR MISSION is to create a living and working community environment where everyone, especially those with special needs, can discover and develop their full potential. We value each person, regardless of ability, for his or her unique contribution to the village.

Community members, with and without disabilities, live and work together as expanded families in comfortable homes throughout the village, forming a supportive community based on shared responsibility and caring. This lifestyle helps to foster mutual help and understanding, as people live and work side by side, day by day, each learning from the other.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Long week

Last evening I was finally able to get Monty out for a much needed nice run with a couple of other dogs. The day after my last post my step-brother passed away after a long hard battle with cancer. I wasn't close with him, because I chose not to be. He had already been diagnosed with cancer before he came into our lives. I've lost so many already, I felt my heart couldn't take another hit right now. Well that back fired. Now I regret not having spent more time with him. He was a wonderful kind human being. What can I learn from this? LIVE IN THE DAMN MOMENT! When given the opportunity to go or do something...DO IT! Open your heart and soul to everyone and everything. Do not be afraid to love, because when it's all said and done....LOVE IS ALL THAT REMAINS! It stays in your heart forever. Thank you Jr. for another life lesson that I got too late. For a couple of years, I had the older brother I always dreamed of having, too bad I didn't get to know him better. I think my heart and mind was so wrapped up in Petey's illness and subsequent death that nothing else mattered to me. The heart can share pain and happiness all at the same time....practice what you preach!

Today is it...this isn't a practice run. Heading down to PA to visit my oldest son, really looking forward to seeing him and sharing his new life.

My little Red girls continue to come to the feeders, it warms my heart to see them looking so healthy. I squirrel sat over TG for Oscar the horror, WOW is he nasty. Amazing how different they are when raised without siblings.