Welcome to 2016

Grandpa introducing Kiernan to the Mars Rover - and lots of other aviation and space history.

Ed introducing Kiernan to the Mars Rover – and lots of other aviation and space history.

The word is out in a variety of forecasts and predictions that 2016 is the year of the Fire Monkey and resonates to the number 9. Nine is associated to completion/ending of a cycle or pattern so something new can begin.

Celebrity deaths have been in the news this past week but that is not a representation of how this nine energy could affect your life. Assuming 9 = death is self-defeating. Instead consider your personal past and choices or changes that framed your life during 2007, and 1998, as years that also resonated to the number 9. There were big shifts in our family lifestyle and careers in both of those years.

1998 was our first year in Oregon after our move from New Jersey so may seem to be the beginning of a cycle. But in looking back it was the year we attempted to recreate our former lifestyle of corporate weekdays and adherence to the school calendar, with sporadic family adventures. It was a very reactionary year as lots of stuff made us let go of the old, adapt to the new, and eventually begin routines that did not resemble anything we’d envisioned.

2007 began with Ed’s career change of no more travel and working from home. Again there was a lot of reactionary actions as nothing was falling into place, until we released expectations and learned to go with the flow. So – looking back does help make us become attuned and a bit forewarned.

Recent events have brought some dramatic endings and new beginnings which makes it more obvious that this is the year to toss that luggage with the broken wheel/zipper/handle so we are required to buy new at the start of an adventure.

My experience is that nine/completion/ending energy is often a wild ride so just get-it-done. Dreaming or wishing for those ‘good-ole-days’ or for when ‘things-calm’ will just make it harder. Expect to react calmly as things happen, then go with the flow and look at what ever is over as what needs to be released. Because…

2016 will resonate to the energy of a Red Fire Monkey! Who is thrilled with the image of swinging from the trees this summer? I am and will up my exercise regime now so I’m ready to play Tarzan.

Consider that the 2015 energy was the Wooden Sheep, and 2014 was the Wooden Horse. That means the energy for 2017 with a new president leading the USA will be a Fire Rooster. Hmm, this is one reason I don’t attempt to understand politics.

“Monkey is a smart, naughty, wily and vigilant animal.”

Which candidate for president does that describe? I expect the political shenanigans will continue and I hope it’s not an explosive transition as the wooden sheep becomes a fire monkey.

Happy New Year!


Holiday 2015 007

We now have a tiny tree that sets on a table and the angel is too big for the fake branches on top.

Our Christmas decorations and activities are now festive touches for just the two of us. When the girls were young, and we hosted holiday events in our home, it was a big deal to add sparkle to every room. I even had embroidered red and green hand towels for the bathroom.

We used a tablecloth that was decorated with poinsettias, eventually it became the skirt under the tree to cover the stand.

Oregon is getting drenched, flooded, and the winds were wild last week. Snow is piling in the mountains and ski resorts and more storms are forecast. At present, our Jack Russell is the most affected because she’s wrapped in a towel after every venture outside. We’re not sure if she dislikes towels or if she is playing an escape and tug game.


We added another “D” to her name as “Arkkadde” was created from our grandchildren initials and Declan was born in September. It’s pronounced like “arcade” though many think we are saying “Our Kady.”

We still wonder about the first two years of her life before we brought her home. Now that she’s been here a year her personality is much more lively and she’s taken ownership of us and her home. She doesn’t cower or quiver much anymore and is as happy to have her jacket put on for walks as she liked getting fit into her life jacket during our summer activities. The local groomer, who trims Arkkadde’s claws, is amused and pleased at how much more lively and friendly this little dog has become.

While our weather is nasty here, and two of our daughters had flooding challenges during work commutes, all is well for us and we are grateful. We’re grateful for day-to-day stuff while being aware that our crappiest days could be nirvana to many.

Knowing that many on this planet would consider my worst days as dreams come true days, is a rather fascinating exercise to figure out how to make that happen. In fiction, at least….

Question Answered

Tall Ship in Coos BayWe had a great Mother’s Day in summer like sunshine at our weekend place. The grandsons rode dirt bikes and the six year old was undamaged by his spill through a barbed wire fence into a small stagnant pond. His mom had stopped to caution him on the turn so got to watch – which she said was like watching it happen in slow motion.

The massage I had yesterday was devoted to my neck, shoulders and hands so I’m feeling pretty good again. I’ve been taking care of writerly business stuff and now am ready to return to a novel in process. There was really no doubt which one to give my attention but I like when a nudge from the universe give me a “Yep, on the right track” message.

Paty Jager posted the above picture on Facebook with the  caption, “Spending our anniversary in Coos Bay and this drifts by our hotel.”  That’s my Yep, as Coos Bay is one of the main settings of the novel I set aside last month. Now the storyboard is again set up and binders and books are spread across the dining room table.

Visions and what’s next

Arkkade-Mary face 31515At least once a year, or when I feel some type of change is pending in my life journey, I take the time for deep meditations with intent for guidance. This is no different than annual medical checkups – which I recommend. In my family we have as many scientists and medical professionals as we have esoteric practitioners; there are also teachers and writers and musicians, and all sorts of business professionals.

During 2005 – 2008, my annual life journey check-ups were with an awesome spiritual teacher-life counselor. Being able to review those readings years later are super fascinating. There was so much laughing on the 2008 CD! Laughter? During a life counseling session? Yes. There was also the assurance that I had the skills to counsel myself. As an aspiring romance novelist, and mother to four of the most amazing women on planet earth, being my own life counselor meant I could READ BOOKS.

Ahh, Nirvana.

In 2007 I started my own annual-checkup-deep meditation process. My intention was for insight regarding my future and chosen life purpose. And I did have a vision. It was short but very clear. I saw myself walking across a stage, thanking someone, then taking my place at a podium before a large audience in an auditorium. And it felt good. But that’s where the vision ended with no insight into what I would present, or why I was an authority on my topic. The clarity of the vision wouldn’t fade, and no other insight was forthcoming, so I accepted that public speaking was in my future.

A few months later I enrolled in the local community college. Public speaking was only one of my classes. I haven’t experienced that vision yet but I have done lots more public speaking and workshops in recent years. Last year I had another one of those clear visions. There was a whole lot going on in my life as I tend to be involved in more than one project, or agenda, at a time. So I was really surprised to have a very clear vision of myself in a long coat, wearing a hat, walking a small white dog. Everything else was very misty and surreal except this vision of me from behind, walking into the mist with this little white dog. It had to be a metaphor.

I’m very comfortable with visions being metaphors or similes.

There were so many dogs around me, one daughter has three and the other has two – and these are the homes where I was spending my time as granny-nanny. Plus, in Chinese Astrology the animal image for Ed is a dog. I’m a pig. I also knew that Ed needed a new dog. I also missed my Amber, a golden retriever, who left our family in 2006. Two weeks after we brought Arkkade home, when it was time to take her for a walk, it was a rainy day as is common in Oregon during the winter.

I opened the coat closet and instead of the hooded jacket I usually wore I noticed the old rain coat I had since we lived in New Jersey during the 1990’s. I put it on and saw a hat I had bought a few months earlier. I’ve never been a hat person but I had been shopping with my friend Gina a few months earlier,  and we went into this cool hat shop…

I was well into the misty fog of our heavily treed dead-end-road when I realized I was living that mist-enshrouded vision. Arkkade was unaffected as I stopped to laugh – she just settled into the overgrowth at the side of the gravel road and took a poop.

Passion to create peace

I’ve been rather quiet with posts to this blog because my online activity has been primarily with my tablet while babies are in the room. It’s a marvel to me that I can peruse so much on a sleek device wherever I have WiFi, and it even entertains a one-year-old.

I’ve read the following article a few times because it’s the first time I’ve considered an alternative to being pro-peace. The whole article is great but here’s the primary message of:

The Opposite of War and the Secret of Creativity” by Meryl Ann Butler […Read the whole article here…]

The essence of war is destruction. Therefore, its opposite is not peace, but creativity, which offers thrilling and deeply soulful nourishment to our bodies, minds, and spirits.

Peace is simply the byproduct of a dynamically creative society. It’s not the goal. So if we’ve set our sights on peace, we’ve set them too low.

A truly peace-full civilization is characterized by a dynamic dance of both practical and artistic creativity that nourishes the soul and elevates the spirit, sending a ripple effect of wellbeing throughout humanity.

While creativity includes the obvious variety of artistic expressions, such as painting, writing, music and theater, it includes more humble activities, too.   [Read More…].

Meryl Ann Butler conf 80x100Meryl Ann Butler is an award-winning artist, author, editor, labyrinth builder, speaker, and Renaissance woman who has offered presentations at A.R.E. since 1986. Her artwork hangs in hundreds of collections around the world, including those of Caroline Myss, Dr. C. Norman Shealy, Dr. Patch Adams, and the late Nelson Mandela.

This whole article struck a chord with me because I have wondered what could significantly replace the war-machine for humans. We love drama and without conflict there is no story. War is the ultimate conflict whatever the reasons enemies have for engaging in such activities.

Many in my family consistently watch movies based within wars, from Saving Private Ryan to The Last of the Mohicans. Epics like The Lord of the Rings and Star Wars are full of battles between “good” and “evil” that generate stories about courage, loyalty and more, and portray humans as the best they can be.

One dramatic truth that I’ve heard in various ways is, “happy families are boring” which means being part of a happy family equals being bored.  Even our sporting events are designed to be full of passion and drama to make us care about the players.

Passion refers to “a strong feeling of enthusiasm or excitement for something or about doing something” and aligns with being creative. Passion, and courage, and challenge are only a few of the dynamic words used for the stories we care about.

Which makes me wonder – if humanity can evolve into a creative and peaceful race, what will happen to (or fulfill) our desire for drama? As peace is the absence of conflict would it be a boring story? Can we add passion to peace so it becomes dynamic?

A proactive intent

Aug 09 063I am anticipating the August days will dawn with a flavor of continuity and control… Ha Ha…

The Sun, Jupiter, and Mercury are in Leo and that’s more fire than this sunset picture I took of Mt. Hood a few years ago. I expect to feel invincible and ready to party daily as Leo rules my 1st house, my persona, and is represented by my mane of hair that is too short for a decent ponytail.

Mars, the planet of action, is giving me the sudden urge to get my house in order with intent for some structure to my writing career. I believe there will be a consistent grammy-nanny schedule for August and that will be great! I like routines but there is nothing routine about babies. The greatest blessing is that after days with babies I am too tired to bother with global, or even local, news. This means I’m only paying attention to what is in the present moments of my life and there’s been lots of good things.

Today I felt full of energy to get stuff done but instead paused and did a computer back-up session. It’s been a while since I did and there are a few hundred pictures of babies, people and places, from recent months that are now stored in a safe place. It’s so easy to get caught up in the digital cloud and forget that a good thunder and lightning storm, like the one last night, could wreck havoc on electronics.

A lot of my friends and family are feeling a shift toward abundance in their lives. We are all grateful for lessons learned that make these good events so much sweeter. I hope you feel the same.

The moon and more duality

A Full Moon on Friday the 13th!

We’ll be attending a daughter’s commencement ceremony.

The past weeks have been wild with new routines and insights and contemplation, and allergy-post-natal-drip and ear-numbing-congestion. I am now rational enough to attribute all my foggy misery to my enthralling New Orleans experience – which was during the Full Moon last month.

May’s Full Moon was a Seriously Saturn one, but there was a Sparkling Venus in the mix.

May 20-2014 001So what’s been happening in these few weeks between full moons?

Both my business partner and my husband are embroiled in large company reorganizations.

Two daughters were offered (and accepted) great new jobs. This will create changes as my day-job of grammy-nanny now includes two babies, 3 days a week, and as long as I remember to eat I should still thrive on this for the year.

TWO trailersThere are now two recreational vehicles parked at our weekend place. The one is like a mini apartment and has been parked for six years. Having a grandchild or two inside for the night made it very crowded. Now, The “Tango” is a comfortable bunk house type that is very road worthy and adventures are planned. This set up maximizes shade and wind-block for a protected picnic area.

These listed activities are the main life events since May’s full moon, which shone while I was at the convention in NOLA and that silver light was illuminating all kinds of significant potentials for my career as a novelist. There’s this evolving new genre that may be a niche for some of my stories that are already in process. I was chatting with editors about “rite of passage” stories for Adulting

June’s full moon is also a doozie!  Read about it from Kelley Hunter (She lists many other stellar aspects that are in process now, too.)

The polarity dynamic between the SUN in open-minded GEMINI and the FULL MOON in goal-oriented SAGITTARIUS reveals options and new vistas and visions. … 

The old threads are stitches we are picking up thanks to the Mercury retrograde cycle.   …  

This Gemini-Sagittarius Full Moon can bring out the intuitive, visionary manager who sees where everyone on the team can make the best contribution, where each point of view fits into the puzzle. A variety of our sub-personality voices are vocal. A change-up is called for, though there might be a musical chairs shift of positions before each element is properly positioned. 

Astrology aspects are fascinating to interpret after they’ve passed in relation to what events unrolled, but it’s also fun to have these types of predictions to consider.

Full moon’s are great for navigation on the high seas, and deserts, and Shakespeare included the light of the silvery moon in his comedies and dramas.

I’m never sure what made Friday the 13th famous but we do have a black cat. She is Pele, named in honor of the volcano goddess.

When the moon is not mundane

If you had the chance to see the Full Blood-Moon Eclipse, yeah! The mundane aspects of this eclipse have been analyzed and debated through astrology circles for months. “Mundane” means general-global, applicable to all, as the moon and tides apply to weather and gravity and mysterious creatures who sprout hair and howl.

The grandbabies that thriving. 4-week-old Robert and 8-month-old Kaedence.

The grandbabies are thriving. 4-week-old Robert and 8-month-old Kaedence.

Fortunately none of the apocalyptic predictions have come true but the wild and wacky energy will continue for weeks. I won’t be watching the news. This moon cycle, since the new moon in Libra on Oct 5th 2013 to this full moon in Libra last night, has been a roller coaster ride. It’s like I’ve been riding from peak to peak though there was sludge on the tracks through the valleys.

It’s now week three of my full-time grammy-nanny job and I can feel the potential benefits for my writing already. My next novel is finally getting drafted! The problem with writing it is that I didn’t know it was the book to write, because I was working on revising something else, and there’s been dramas and babies and conferences to run. Then I got sucked into learning more about Google+, and excuse, excuse, excuse.

Fortunately I had a wonderful plot-storming session with Gina Fluharty and she set me straight. She gave me a piece of my own advice. Don’t you just love it when you struggle for months trying to make a decision, or get a project in gear, and then realize why its not happening and you should have figured it out all along…

I blame the moon. It ain’t been mundane for me, it’s been personal  and awesome.

It’s April Already?

April 1st is the designated Foolishness for Fun day but I’ve never been good at that and even aware not to trust anything I read or see, there’s always a Huh? I’d hate to respond to something and then find out it is a spoof.

RED-y for Punk Rock concert

Newest Grandson, Robbie. 3 Weeks old and ready for a Punk Rock concert.

What’s not a spoof is this month is going to be a doozy of stellar energies.

Christina, The Oxford Astrologer states:

Two eclipses and the Cardinal Grand Cross. That’s quite enough drama for one month surely.

To read your horoscope click here.

Do read the long intro first this month because it explains a bit more about the Cardinal Cross and shows you how you can think about it for yourself.

For a different flavor of forcasts: Gaia Astrology-Moon Magic is not as easy to read because of the colors used on the website, but Steve uses gentler words about these stellar aspects. Both of these posts offer a whole lot to read while the energies being explained are not about reading a whole lot.

So instead, check out “The Art of Sight” by Monica at Symbolreader.

In other news, I am only on day two of my new-job-routine and there was an issue with my vacuum. When there’s 3 dogs and a baby in the same room, I want a really easy vacuum in the house. Little Robbie only has two dogs in the house and a great vacuum. But his cousin Kaedence is 7 months and starting to crawl so the vacuum issue is a bigger deal as this grammy-nanny really doesn’t want layers of dog shed included in her formative skills.

Maybe that’s the lesson of the stars, at least for me, this month. Choose what battles matter, then add the “horse power” since 2014 is the Year of the Horse. And the first battle is choosing what’s got the best power to suck… I’ll avoid expounding on a beater brush… I’ve got a novel to write.

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