Alive and Well in Sunny SoCal

    Where have I been!!  It was June 12th the last time I posted on my blog  Can it really be that long??   I am alive and well in Apple Valley, California.  (Home of Roy Rogers and Dale Evans.)  We moved into our new house on June15h (my birthday). It is wonderful - the right for us!  Since then it has been a whirlwind of activities - unpacking, painting, shopping, and trying to find places for things. Plus adjusting to life in a whole new environment - the desert!  A huge change from Ohio.  The sun shines EVERY day!

     We have also been entertaining, using our new fantastic patio and BBQ - that has been fun! (We celebrated my parents wedding anniversary just this past weekend.) Our new backyard is beautiful - a little green oasis in the desert.  The yard is what sold us on the house! 

However, I am having some difficulty adjusting.  Things are so different here.  I miss my friends, yoga, my spiritual circle of like minded people, my two favorite coffee shops, the metro parks, lightening bugs, Mustard Seed, Krieger's and of course escaping to Borders. It's hard to believe but I also miss Ohio thunderstorms!  There are no replacements for those things here - so I am searching for some thing new.  I know I will find exactly what I need - but it will just take time.  Believe it or not we are thinking of taking up golf!

My art has taken a back seat in the past couple of months - but I am feeling the need to create. Since I have  more free time it is a great opportunity.  Plus I have open wall space everywhere - it is just crying out for some art!

My new life allows me a new freedom to explore myself and also opens a world of opportunities.  I am still in the exploration process.  One thing I know is that I am taking it slow - no more crazy busy life for me.  (My new Doc diagnosed me with adrenal fatigue.)  Time for me to slow down and find peace from the inside out.  It will be a challenge but I am taking it a day at a time.  Jeff is my teacher - he knows how to take it easy and never feels pressure or guilt - it used to make me crazy - now I see he has always been my teacher.  You know what they say "when the student is ready the teacher will appear".  My teacher has been here all the time - I just wasn't ready to be the student!  (He's taking a nap as I write this!)

That's it for now.  We'll see what comes along next!  I'll keep you posted.

In the spirit of adventure,  Cindy

Kingman AZ

Beautiful Arizona! We drove to Kingman today and it was a magnificant day. The sky was the brightest blue I think I have ever seen with pure white puffy clouds - the ones you can just imagine floating on. Truly amazing. It was like watching the nature channel as we drove along the freeway. The clouds took different shapes and the sun shot rays between the clouds - like spot lights on the desert. It was a perfect day.

Tomorrow we arrive in California at my parents house. Monday afternoon we get the keys to our house and Tuesday we move in. I am so excited!

-- Posted on the go from my iPhone.


We made the decison to take a break from the road trip and spend a day exploring Albuquerque. Great choice!

We started the day at Jeff's favorite breakfast spot Del Taco. Then off to find Hip Stitch - a very cool fabric store. Great Amy Butler selection!

Then off to discover nature. We started at the Pueblo Open Space Nature Center and then off to Petroglyph National Park. There is so much to see when you get away from the city hubbub!

We ended the day at Sandia Mountain Tram and watched the sunset high above the city. A great day!

Tomorrow we are off to Flagstaff, Az, really!

-- Posted on the go from my iPhone.

Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico

It has been a blur of states the past few days. Lots of sights to see!

Tonight we ended the day in Albuquerque. It is beautiful and so warm! We went out for yummy Mexican food, including sopapillias with honey and cinnamon for dessert! Best Mexican we've had in years!

Found out today that the escrow on our new house won't close until next Tuesday. So we can't move in until then. The interesting thing is that tuesday in my BD - the 15th and I am turing 55 and our new address is 11515. Plus I am moving back to the place I was born 55 years ago. Now that has to mean something!!! Any numerology folks out there!!!

On to AZ tomorrow!

- Posted on the go from my iPhone.
A wild day of road construction, wind, rain and traffic congestion! All part of the adventure! As we passed through St. Louis I wanted to take a pic of the arch for this post - no chance, I had both hands on the wheel and both eyes on the road! (Linda, I was thinking if you!)

Today we are off to Tulsa. The final escrow papers were Fedexed there so we could sign. Then will be fedexed back and escrow will close while we are on the road! Weird way to finalize a home purchase. Can't wait to get there and see our new house! I'm sure it's as beautiful as I remember!

It's 5:30 am and we are off -Oklahoma bound!

-- Posted on the go from my iPhone.

Location:St Louis

California Here We Come

We did it! We fit all our junk in two trucks (one big, one little) and a car and we are off to sunny California. We are both looking forward to this new chapter (adventure). Now we just have to make our way 2400 miles! Off we go!

Goodbye Akron (and all our friends) we will miss you!

-- Posted on the go from my iPhone.

Zentangles and Zendoodles - What Fun!

Have you heard of Zentangles?? I just heard about them recently. It is a sort of meditation and art combined. Here is a Zentangle sampler I grabbed of the web.

Mostly they are back and white small designs that remind me of doodling! As a matter of fact here is something I did back in November that I think now is the beginning of a Zentangle! It is colorful, not black and white - but it started as a doodle!

Over the past two weeks I have had some cool synchronicity around Zentangles. First I happened across them again reading a blog, then I was at a bike shop with my husband and I was looking over a bunch of fliers, suddenly I saw one that was from Craft Akron and listed on the their Spring 2010 Classes was one called "Introducing Zentangles". (The class is May 6th - I am signing up -want to join me?). I knew I must find out more - so to the computer . . . some web searching and I found A little more searching and I was surprised to find an old friends name on the list of Zentangle teachers in Ohio. I emailed her and found there is a whole Zentangle movement in and around NE Ohio. Wow.

You just never know what the Universe is going to open up next!

In the spirit of discovery and doodling, Cindy

I Am Worthy!

Over the past few weeks I have had some insights (more like revelations) into my issues with my body, weight and self image. For decades I have been carrying around beliefs about myself and perpetuating them daily through my thoughts, behaviors and emotions. What I now realize is that many of these beliefs are not true at all. Totally false. For example, if I am fat than I don't deserve to take care of myself, I am not worthy. When I lose weight I can take care of myself because then I will be worthy. Well I have lost weight, kept it off for a long time, but still didn't take care of myself OR feel worthy. (And then gained again!) There is one flaw in this equation - I never learned how to "take care of myself" because I never made it to the "worthy" place. So I have never had much practice really taking care of myself. It seems that the only way I found to care for myself was by soothing my soul through my mouth. It is time I find a new way. Fifty-four years old seems a little late to be learning this. But as the famous quote states - better late than never!!

I read something in a book called "When Food Is Love" by Geneen Roth that really struck a cord with me.

Food and love. We begin eating because of reasons that have to do with the kind and amount of love that is in our lives or that is missing from our lives. If we haven't been loved well, recognized, understood, we arrange ourselves to fit the shape of our situations. We lower out expectations. We stop asking for what we need. We stop showing the places that hurt or need comfort. We stop expecting to be met. And we begin to rely on ourselves and only ourselves to provide sustenance, comfort, and pleasure. We begin to eat. And eat. (Or fill in the blank with your favorite addiction.)

What a viscous cycle of pain and comfort. There is something far deeper at the center. A point when the need for looking outside for love ends, and the realization that the love has to come from inside. I keep going back to something I read years ago, a sentence from The Artist's Way - Julia Cameron writes "Treating yourself like a precious object will make you strong". I would like to amend that to "Treating yourself like a precious object will heal you!" Think of the most precious thing in your life ( a partner, a child, a grandchild, your dog, cat, etc.) and think how you would treat them. I realize that if I treated anyone in my life the way I treat myself (in thoughts and behaviors) they wouldn't want to spend much time with me, and would hardly feel precious! It is time to make a change. There is no one but me that can give me what I need. There is no food, drug, shopping adventure or person that is going to fill up the space I have that needs love. There is only one place to turn and that is inside.

Now, don't think I am feeling all sad and melancholy. I'm not! I feel excited and happy. Today I know that every little thing I do to treat myself as a precious object is helping me heal. Every day I do something loving is a day that I get stronger and feel better. Each time I allow myself to experience my feelings instead of turning to food I heal a bit more. It is a process. It is not about a number on a scale, or a dress size. That is ridiculous! It is knowing that I am worthy because I am this unique, one-of-a-kind manifestation; a woman called Cindy. A mighty spiritual being having an amazing human experience! Time to stop getting trapped in my humanness and remember that I came from love and I will return to love! And that finding love in between is why I am here. How can I not be happy about that!!

In the spirit of love, Cindy

Book Review - Food and Life

I came across this book The School of Essential Ingredients, written by Seattle author Erica Bauermeister. The story is about Lillian, a 30ish chef and restaurateur who teaches a series of evening cooking classes. Her desire is to inspire in her students a love and respect for both food and life. The story follows the lives of eight students who, for various reasons, come to take Lillian’s class. Soon you’ll find yourself hoping the smells of her kitchen will waft through your house. You will want to sign up for her class.

It is more than a book about cooking, it is about the essence of life and learning to look at it differently. It is a story of relationships and how food connects people in unique ways. It is about the magic of Lillian the mysterious teacher who seems to know exactly what people are missing most in their lives.

I highly recommend it. This is Erica Bauermesiter's first novel. She has a wonderful writing style that is gentle and soulfully descriptive. Here is an example :

"And Helen, who had begun to feel as if her life was like the daily turning of pages filled with other people's writing, felt as if she suddenly had come upon an illustration."

" . . .the flavor was full of red bursts and spikes of hot pepper shooting across his tongue; underneath, like a steadying hand, a salty cushion of clam, the soft velvet of oregano, and pasta warm as beach sand."

I know that I am enjoying a book when I am sad to come to the end. This book left me wanting more. I would love to hear about Lillian's next cooking class. Maybe there will be a sequel.

Add this one to your reading list!

In the spirit of savoring life, Cindy

You Are What You Eat

After coming home from 6 weeks of traveling I realized how terrible I was feeling. We ate at restaurants way too much, slept in uncomfortable hotel beds and didn't have time for any real self care. I came home feeling bloated, constipated (TMI) and feeling especially fat. When I am feeling like that the last thing I want to do is take care of myself - I just want to hibernate. But after a while I knew that I had to do something. First I decided to starting eating foods that come with no ingredient list - natural and lots of green. Plus I committed to drinking a gallon of water a day - yes an entire gallon! Within three days I started waking up and feeling a bit more human.

Today (nearly four weeks later) I am feeling better than I have in months! Here is a picture I took when I came home from grocery shopping this week.

Everything is fresh, brightly colored and filled with "life force energy". When I eat it I feel the same way. I'm not sure what happened but I had a shift of consciousness. While in California we went to hear Michael Beckwith speak on "Becoming More Authentically You". He encouraged people to awaken in any way possible to their true selves. He said one way to do that was by healing your body temple. "Look at the distraction that stands in the way of embracing your ray of light from spirit (source)." Those words helped me get clear on something I have known for a long time - my weight, food, dieting, the obsession - was standing in the way of me embracing my ray. If I want to live a vital, light filled life than I had to start by healing my body temple.

Next thing I know (the Law of Attraction at work) a book sort of dropped into my lap. It is written my Natalia Rose called "Raw Food - Life Force Energy". The book is good overall, but the part I needed to read was the introduction and the first couple of chapters. "Tapping the Secret Laws of Life Force Energy". I highly recommend reading it. Here is the philosophy of her book:

  • We are dynamic-energetic/vibrational being intrinsically connected with a universal energy system from which we can access and endless supply of Life Force Energy.

  • In order for us to experience a perfect body, true health, and consistent joy, we need to clean our bodies and return them to their natural, harmonious light-energy quotient.

  • Once we enhance the flow of Life Force Energy within our bodies, we will experience ourselves, each other, and our lives differently.

  • Once we are clean internally, harmoniously flowing with Life Force Energy, we will be infinitely more attractive to others because we will be physically more beautiful, lean, kind, clear, joyful people of right purpose.

That is a whole new way of looking at it don't you think? It certainly was for me. Since the morning I read those first few pages I knew that my struggle was over. It was time for me to give up the number on the scale, the good food - bad food war, the self-loathing, and the rigid all-or-nothing thinking that held me hostage! I knew that I wanted to feel the lightness of Life Force Energy in my body and my life. They only way to get there is to feed my body high vibrational foods filled with LFE (Life Force Energy).

This change has created a detox of my body and some of that hasn't been too much fun. But each day I am feeling better, "lighter" and more positive. The negative little voice in my head has quieted to the point that it is merely a faint whisper. I am sleeping better than I have in months. I have energy and a feeling of connection. Self nurturing is now simple, and almost automatic part of life. I am seeing things in a whole new light. Sounds crazy doesn't it. It hasn't been four weeks yet, but the difference is amazing. The quiet little negative voice in my head is whispering "but will it last??" And I say back "who knows?" But it is working today - and today is all I have. Now I truly understand the phrase "You Are What You Eat". Today I want to eat up some LFE!

In the spirit of lightness, Cindy

Sunshine & Borders

Today is "open house" #9. We had to vacate for a couple of hours. An opportunity to go for a walk in the Metro park and then to Borders for some book therapy.

The new issue of "Artful Blogger" is out so I had to find a quiet place and check it out. On page 106 Tracey Clark ( had a photograph that touched me.

Amen! Being a life examiner myself, it is not always an easy path! There are people in my life that wish I could just stop. But it isn't that simple, let me tell you! This is something that is built in to me, I arrived on the planet this way. For years I used drugs, alcohol, food and spending to try to devert it. Eventually I surrendered to it. The best thing I have ever done. Now I see my need to ask questions, explore, examine and excavate the layers of myself as a gift. It brings a sense of wholeness and dimension - it takes me beyond my mere physical to something bigger and that is pretty darn awesome. Sometimes it's no picnic, other times it is a conga line gone wild! I wouldn't have it any other way! Good thing, cause I can't stop it!

A sunny Sunday, spring starting to spring, inspiration at Borders. It's a good afternoon.

In the spirit of examination,

-- Posted on the go from my iPhone.

Spring Break

Today things are a bit quiet around the house. My granddaughters were here for a few days during their spring break from school. And they went home yesterday. This was the first time we had them alone for a long period. It was so much fun. They bring so much life into our house. They are so alive and full of energy.

We did a lot of fun things while they were here. Most fun was making art. We played with polymer clay, made jewelry and painted. When they were little I used to dream about the time when I could play with them in my art studio. I knew it would be so great. Well this week my dream became a reality - except it was far better than the dream because they brought their own unique little spirits into it. It was awesome. This time, being in the moment with them creating art ranks right up there in my list of best days. Can't wait to do it again.

Although it is quite - their energy is still swirling around the house. It has inspired me to start painting again! Zoe just fearlessly whipped out the painting above. I saw in her the pure joy of just starting with a blank page and painting for fun. No pressure, no expectations, just making art! Stick the brush in the paint and go for it! Yeah!!

In the spirit of creativity,

Catching Up

In case you have been wondering what happened to me ( it's been two months since I've blogged ). Jeff and I headed to California to celebrate my Mom's 90th Birthday (plus we wanted to escape winter in Ohio). I had every intention of blogging along the way but . . . . well, it just didn't happen! So here is recap of the past two months in words and pictures:

Ohio snow Kentucky snow Tennessee snow Nashville major toothache The Mitchell’s snow Arkansas Oklahoma Texas Pan Handle New Mexico Albuquerque Del Taco Metaphysical Bookstore Arizona Nevada Laughlin slot machines California The Deushane’s party planning Pasadena Rev.Ed Bacon San Gabriel Bead Shop more party planning grand kids Adian Aubrey & Kelly fried zucchini hot pastrami party scrapbook new computer The Party! Mom’s 90th Birthday Celebration! Big Success Katie relaxing pendulum PH water Australian Open laughter Hemet good food Donny & Isabell Nijia Los Angeles Agape International Michael Beckwith inspiration mountains snow desert rain rain more rain flash floods Scott bike lemons avocados sewing purse goodbye Tucson Kris Halter gems pendulums rain snow New Mexico Las Cruses I10 to I40 planning Texas Oklahoma quilt store yummy fabric Dave Ramsey radio Arkansas Tennessee Nashville beautiful granddaughters Zoë Bella Elisha Chris good food laughter relaxing sewing machine dress making story telling laughter games goodbye heading home Kentucky Ohio snow snow piles of snow cold . . . . . 5200 miles Home!

Now that I am up to date I am back on to my creative focus. It occurred to me today how much I have missed it and how much I enjoy looking at the world in that way. Creativity keeps me centered and living in the moment. A great place to be.

In the spirit of creativity,