Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Learning, Still

World Book Encyclopedia and  Encyclopedia Brittanica, do they even exist anymore in this browser driven world? They were the doorways into the Universe for my very questing young mind. Hours spent sitting on the floor, going from A to Z, just to learn, no, it was more like devour the content on the pages before me. Reading just for the fun of it about things that did not exist for me outside of my bedroom situated in a white house surrounded by cotton fields, corn fields, and cows plunked down in a part of Tornado Alley known as the panhandle of Texas. I am sure I drove the adults in my life crazy with my questions (which is probably one of the reasons there were two sets of encyclopedias in my room). I was lucky, in that I had some very good teachers to start my school years out, teachers that understood my need for answers that came best when I could look for them myself, giving directions when I got stuck, or pushing me to look beyond.
The year, for me, started not in January, but in September. The beginning of the school year was the most exciting time for me. The smells of books, fresh notebooks, pencils, glue, crayons still do it for me. I loved school. I loved school so much that when the Ice Capades came to Amarillo for one day in the middle of the school week, I wouldn't go. My parents dropped me off as they headed for the big show with my little sister and baby brother. The school was nearly empty as everyone had taken advantage of the excused absence policy for this once in a life time event. To this day, sitting in that third grade classroom on a rainy winter day having my all time favorite grade school teacher, Mrs. McCauley, nearly all to myself is one of my favorite memories.
Along the way there were more good and great teachers, and some that left a lot to be desired. But, because I had been fortunate enough to have such great experiences in learning with wonderful teachers early on, I knew that one bad teacher was just a bump in my road of learning.
I feel bad for most teachers now. They don't really get to teach the way that I was taught. I feel sorry for the kids that don't learn for the love of learning, but must be tested into hating school.
I could have easily become a professional student, but location and funding put an end to formal schooling after some college. I have sought out teachers for the other parts of my life. And, again, there are always some thorns among the roses. I never thought that I knew enough. I continued to search for more knowledge, more information, more experience. Then one day, someone came to me and asked if I could teach them. How could I do that? I was the student always looking for the next teacher. I can't possibly be expected to do this! Panic, doubt, insecurity, the big three hit me hard. They kept asking, I kept turning them down. I looked for someone else to teach them. They wouldn't go away. And, then I remembered something. I had been asked to substitute teach for an old high school teacher of mine that had become a close friend in later life. I had given him all the same excuses that I had just doled out to myself. When I told him I didn't have all the answers, he reminded me that it wasn't my job to have the answers. It was the job of the students to find the answers. All I had to do was ask them the right questions. Then, he said, "And Sharon, you always had great questions!"

Monday, March 18, 2013

The Cake You Have Been Waiting For

Oatmeal Cake (taken from the page of Barbara Stewart Anderson)

1 1/4 c. Water, boiling
1 c. Oatmeal, old fashioned, uncooked
1/2 c. Butter
1 c. Sugar
1 c. Brown Sugar, firmly packed
2 Eggs
1 tsp. Vanilla
1 1/2 c. All-purpose Flour
1 tsp. Baking Soda
3/4 tsp. Cinnamon
1/2 tsp. Salt
1/4 tsp. Nutmeg

1/2 c. Butter
2 c. Coconut
1 c. Nuts (finely chopped) I use Pecans
1 1/2 c. Brown Sugar, firmly packed 
8-10 Tbs. Evaporated Milk

1 Preheat oven at 350 degrees Pour boiling water over oatmeal and set aside for 20 minutes.

2. Cream butter and sugars, add eggs. Beat well.

3. Add vanilla and oatmeal mixture. Add flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Mix well. Put in greased 9x13 inch pan. Bake for 30 minutes.

4. For topping: Melt butter, add coconut, nuts, brown sugar, and milk. Mix well. Frost cake when you take it out of the oven. Place under broiler until the top is brown. (Watch carefully so it doesn't burn.)

One note: After becoming a fan of the Sweet Potato Queens (They have a great cookbook full of wonderful recipes, financial advice, and life lessons. I KNOW!) I NEVER use anything but DARK brown sugar, so they don't come take away my fan membership card. I wish I could give credit for the recipe, but I could not get anyone to confess when I asked on my personal page. Whomever you are, "Thank you from the tip of my tongue to the bottom of my stomach!"
Whew! I am so glad the picture turned out! By the time I got done editing the photo, that piece was gone. I would have had to cut another piece and eaten some in order to take another. Hmmmmm....that the picture look a little out of focus to you? 

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Been there, done that!

I am you. Really. We are more alike than different.
When I started my business I was nervous, excited, doubtful. I had done my time in classes, taken notes and read books and lessons, participated in practice sessions, had great teachers and not so great. So, what was I worried about? Mostly, you. How would I know how to counsel you, help you, nurture you, heal you? Who did I think I was, anyway? I came pretty close to paralyzing myself with fear. But the money I had spent and the people who were supporting me pushed me forward. I opened my doors.
Before my first client was due to arrive, I thought I was going to throw up. My heart felt like it was going to jump out of my chest. I almost called her and cancel. Thank goodness, I did not. I learned a big lesson that day. Trust with a big T. I had to let go, give it over. Do I still get nervous? Yes. But, as soon as I start doing what I do, using the talents I have been given, I am given a flow. Sometimes, I am amazed at what comes out of my mouth or thru my hands. I am tickled when I am telling someone something in a reading and "feel" a little tap on my shoulder and hear a whisper of "Practice what you preach." Everything that I have gone thu in my life, good and bad, is something that I can use to counsel a client. All those things that I have experienced or been witness to goes into my healers' tool box. Pulling out these lessons gives me new perspective and shows you that I have walked in your shoes. I have felt what you are feeling, gone thru what you are going thru. I am so grateful for being in this line of work and I love everyone that I have met. So when I talk to you I can honestly say, "I have been there and done that! (((BIG hugs)))

Friday, January 18, 2013

Dominating my Own Little World

I have great plans for my own life domination. I have plans to conquer fears, talents, artistic dreams, romantic desires, domestic duties, my health, and time management. I am 18 days into my campaign. I have now come to a painful conclusion. I need minions...a LOT of minions. 
I think I am a great idea person. I like to come up with the idea, execute it a few times and then, move on. I hate repetitive tasks (aka listing items on Etsy, website, etc.) So, I need a computer savvy, tireless minion to do this.
I can't seem to give myself permission to create art, write, do spiritual stuff if my surroundings are a mess. Domestic minion needed! Please apply within.
Minion with driver's license is a must for running all errands. That way I don't have to leave a creative idea dangling just because we have no milk or bread in the house. 
I figure with 4 or 5 good minions, they can get my life in order and I can do, well, just what I want to do.....and whenever I want to do it. I have had a thought about the whole diet and exercise thing, though, and I don't believe a minion could handle that. Might need a task master for that particular job! Hahaha
So, anyway, where do you look in the Yellow Pages for minions? I can't seem to find a listing!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Your Own Bed

Four nights away. Not a vacation, but a mission of service for my mother-in-law. We are home, tired and somewhat drained. When I sank into my bed last night it was with a sigh of great relief and an expectation of revitalization. I miss my bed so much when we are away from it. It is nothing special, no fancy foam, or pumps that have your number on them. Just a plain old mattress on top of box springs. But, it is home to me. It represents safety and comfort, healing and pleasure, rest and revitalization. Every since our children were little and would run into our room during inclement weather yelling, "Tunder, Daddy, tunder!", we have had a king sized bed. Lots of room for my tossing and turning sleep and for two little girls to find security between both parents during a loud eastern Colorado thunderstorm. The feel of the weight of my comforter on a dark, snowy night sleeping between warm flannel sheets is my idea of a good night's sleep. Lying on top of crisp sheets while a cool night breeze blows across me after a hot summer day is bliss. Funny the things we appreciate the most when we are away from them and how grateful we are to be back to them. Hope your bed gives you what you need. Sleep tight tonight, my Peepsies! (((Warm Hugs)))

Friday, January 11, 2013

Be Good to Yourself

Brushes like these two might be the one of the best and easiest things you can do for your physical body. They will detox the biggest organ you have, your skin. It is good for your lymphatic system, among other things. I have never been a great one for pampering myself. I guess I grew up too much of a tomboy. I mean, who has time to put on lotion when there are so many wonderful things outside in the dirt. (I still prefer dirt to lotion! Hahaha)
I live in the desert southwest. Desert=dry, dry, dry. Now, while I take the time to hydrate my wood furniture (hubby is a woodworker) to keep it looking good and staying together in this climate, I used to rarely take the time to take care of my outer layer of protection. After awhile of this type of neglect my skin does a pretty good imitation of a genuine alligator bag, especially my legs. Hey, I'm a grown up tomboy and I can ignore that. But, here comes the kicker, I get itchy, really itchy. I start to leave red marks on my skin from scratching. Also, I leave behind a trail of dandruff like stuff everywhere. Eewwww! Enter my two new best friends. The short brush is very soft and good to use on my face and neck. The longer brush has more serious bristles and is long enough to even do your whole back. Make sure the brushes aren't too stiff. You don't want to damage your skin when you are trying to do a good thing. I did a little research and found that you should brush your skin toward your heart. Start at your feet and brush up, then do face and neck (softer brush) and brush down. Shower or bathe after to get rid of all that yucky dead stuff.There are so many benefits to this practice. It only takes 5-15 minutes. This is the best feels really GOOD! I don't even think of this as pampering. It is something I do to keep me comfortable and it still does other really cool stuff. It was kind of like when we found out dark chocolate is good for us. Anyway, your skin will look better and you will feel vibrant. Take care of your skin. I mean, really, it holds all the good stuff in.

Thursday, January 10, 2013


The root of disappointment was planted by the seed of expectation. I was going to write about waiting, or patience today, but just couldn't seem to quite get in the mood for it. All of you that know me, already know that one of my life lessons is patience. So, I'm not going to lead the cow down to that trough (well, at least not today LOL). But, earlier I was doing some chores and putting together some single serve meals to freeze for my 95 year old mother-in-law, and I thought, "This is not what I expected to be doing today. What happened to that time I was setting aside to do artsy-crafty stuff?" And, what had been an ok activity disappeared into a haze of disappointment, a slightly feeling sorry for myself kind of moment. And THAT, my peepsies, turned into about an hour and a half's worth of looking back over a lot of my expectations. I turned 60 this year. I am not where I expected to be in my life. I had EXPECTED to be getting ready to retire, traveling more, seeing my kids and grandkid more, spending more time with my soon to be 80 year old mom. I had expected never to get into this bad a physical condition again (having done this twice before and making some very serious, but now, broken vows to that effect). And it just wasn't the good stuff that I expected. Hubby and I have had some setbacks thru life (who hasn't?) but I got into the habit of expecting the other shoe to drop. You know, just waiting for the next bad thing. I think a lot of us have done this. I have been working on this particular one pretty hard. I have found that if I am always expecting something bad to happen that I can be pretty good at manifesting that. Also, it brings a lot of worry and I am not enjoying my life at the moment. I have found that when I am in that expecting type of place that I am not here, not now. I am living in some daydream of how the future is going to be, most of the time without putting a lot of thought into what needs to get done to have those expectations met. I am not only missing out on all the great things that I do have going, but I am setting myself up for future disappointment. Crazy, huh? Yeah, I know. Well, I am a work in progress and most of the time a pretty good optimist. I will let this expectation part of myself go. It will take a lot off of my shoulders and make my day to day life easier. Well, I still have some food to freeze so I had better get at it. Made a family favorite, JuicyBurgers. I expect my mother-in-law will really like it........oops!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Feeding Your Wild Thing

Feeding Your Wild Thing

I got to see "The Life of Pi" last night. It is still very much with me today. It is so full of such good stuff to think about. What keeps floating to the top for me today is how fragile is the hold we have on our Wild Thing. You know what I am talking about. It is the Passion, the Excitement, the sheer Joy, the over the top and down the sides part of you that is so easily lost or worse, euthanized by todays expectations of what makes a grown up or a responsible citizen. I am not talking about violent tendencies, I am talking about the things that bring life to your life. The fierceness that can pop out when you are speaking about the things you truly believe in. The passion that makes people look at you a little differently, maybe even take a step back, have you fed it lately? That joyful excitement that bubbles through you when you are creating----ANYTHING, have you given it a long drink of inspiration? If we don't play with our inner Wild Thing, air it out, nourish it, we will lose it. It will be gone and it may take a lifetime to coax it back. So, quit starving your very precious Wild Thing. Feed it the good stuff. Now, go outside and ROAR!
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