Saturday, February 28, 2009

Inspiration for Today ~ Toni Carmine Salerno

A little more inspiration for you again today. I came across the web site of an artist named Toni Carmine Salerno. His work is stunning and very spiritual. His painting and writings have been used to create numerous inspirational oracle decks of cards. There are also books and journals. I thought you might enjoy perusing his web site too.

Above is the cover and an inside look at a new book called Gaia Body and Soul. It offers offers reflections and meditations in honour of Mother Nature and the feminine spirit.

I liked this card from the Ask An Angel deck. Here is the image and the messsage that appears on the back of the card.

ART Archangel Gabriel

Art is the message.

The indefinable group of colours, symbols and sounds that contain and express the indescribable. Art is the manifestation or materialisation of the consciousness that exists in ethereal form.

This is why when a new artist emerges and finds a way to express a vibration that has been bubbling below the surface of our awareness, a revolution takes place.

Whenever a society becomes rigid, represses an energy or becomes too much the extreme of an energy or value system, new art always emerges to challenge and bring balance to the whole. From Picasso to the Beatles, the artist dives deep into the unconscious to bring forth something new.

The artist is a channel; an explorer of the intangible realms, a messenger of what was found or what found the artist.

To be an artist is to be open to the colours, sounds, symbols or stories that embody the world and are talking to you; to be willing to explore what is hidden in the unconscious worlds and to be brave enough to be a messenger of what you experience.
The moment the intellect or the ego become involved, the artist becomes a blocked channel. Fear, arrogance, pride and insecurity are feelings that relate to the ego and the identity. The art comes to you because it needs to be expressed and it sees you as the correct birth canal. It doesn’t want you to take credit or own or judge what it is. Just be a good parent and nurture and protect it. The artist is the messenger not the message.

It is time for you now to open yourself up to these new ideas and new worlds of creative opportunity. Release your fears, your pride and be brave enough to go to new territories within your inner landscape. The messages, images, sounds and ideas you receive now are important to you personally, spiritually, creatively and vocationally.

Pay attention, be brave and be open.

Another intriguing deck is called GAIA ORACLE Cards

Here is one of the cards called Sacred Heart.
The message on the back follows below:

Passion, Love, Spiritual Communion

You are entering a period of profound and heartfelt love; a deeply emotional time where you focus on, question and think about the things that matter to you most. You will find yourself re-evaluating your priorities and core values and this leads you along a path of self-discovery, bringing with it a deepened spiritual connection to the Earth, your surroundings, family, friends and loved ones. Your passion and appreciation for life are heightened. At times your emotions overflow to the point of being almost unbearable. Yet this is nothing to fear or be concerned about, for this is a most sacred and precious time through which your loving intentions are both seen and felt by all around you. Your inner light and wisdom illuminates, heals and inspires. This is a good time for creative writing, or you may feel inclined to draw, paint or take up a creative pursuit of some kind. Thank the Earth and stars for the many blessings you receive.

I am in tune with my inner light and wisdom
I am guided always by love
I energetically share my light and wisdom with others
I am one with the Earth and stars
The guidance I receive is free from the limitations of time and space

Friday, February 27, 2009

Inspiration for Today ~ Goddess Leonie

Looking for some inspiration today? I hope the answer is yes, as I really want to share with you the web site of the very creative and talented Goddess Leonie. She was featured in Sark's latest book Juicy Pens Thirsty Paper. Goddess Leonie is a wonderful artist, a gifted writer and a true intuitive Goddess. Click here for her web site called Goddess Guidebook.

Here is a taste of what you can find on her web site:

Creative Goddess Manifesto

Creative Goddesses make art because
it fills them up with joy and light.

Creative Goddesses believe mistakes are sacred
and add to an artwork’s story and perfection.

Creative Goddesses aren’t afraid of
making art that doesn’t Look Good.

Creative Goddesses don’t make art for others,
they make art for themselves.

Creative Goddesses make art that is true for them.

Creative Goddesses don’t need
no stinkin’ outside approval.

Creative Goddesses make art that
doesn’t need to look like anyone else’s.

Creative Goddesses trust in their intuition and vision
to make *their* art as it is needed in this world.

Creative Goddesses listen to their soul’s calling.

Creative Goddesses dip their fingers in paint.

Creative Goddesses know the power of soulful creativity.

Creative Goddesses remember that every person
on this planet is an artist, a Creative spirit, a soul
who needs love, joy, creativity, laughter
and connection just as much as water and food.

Creative Goddesses do it messy.
And gladly. And reverently.

Creative Goddesses share their art when it is right for them,
and hold on to the medicine of their art when it is right for them.

The Creative Goddess is inside you.
She is inside each of us, everywhere, all the time.
We only need a moment to hear our own grace and magnificence.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Synchronicity & Spirals

I receive an email message from The Universe every day. I learned about this from a blog called Spiritual Cowgirl by the writer of The Red Book, Sera Beak. I'll be writing a whole separate post on her amazing spiritual book. So today my message left me feeling a bit tingly. I think of it as synchronicity.

There were a lot of reasons
you chose to come to earth, Michelle,
and I am super happy to tell you
that not one of them was to
master being poor, lonely, or sick.
Incidentally, neither did you have any intention
of living your life without a red spiral heart.
Clutch! You came to "kick butt," Michelle...

The Universe

While I like reading that I am not here on planet Earth to be poor, lonely or sick this isn't the part that made me tingle. It was the red spiral heart statement. Sure these email messages from the Universe are used for many people. Yet it is such an odd combination "spiral heart." What does that mean exactly to live with a red spiral heart? I don't know the answer quite yet. This is something I will reflect on and write about.

What I do know already is that I have always been drawn to spirals. I wrote a post about this just a few weeks ago actually. The truly amazing part is that the image on that very same post is none other than a heart with a spiral. I actually purchased this piece, along with two other tear drop pendants with spirals from jewelry designer Becky Sharp. The background colors are stained glass. I love wearing them.

Pendant by Becky Sharp of Becky Sharp Designs
(Read below for information about this item.)

My seeking out spirals led me to Becky and when I contacted her she told me about a discount being offered on a blog and there was a chance to win the red spiral heart. I didn't win, but I did use the discount and I did add the spiral heart to my order. I don't think I would have been seeking out the spirals if I hadn't been wanting something special to wear to the first Red Boa Playshop I put on just a week ago. The Red Boa is an idea that has been residing in me for more that a decade. A book title came to me many years ago - Life's Too Short Not to Wear a Red Boa. I started working on it but fears and insecurities got in the way.

What lit my fire again in regards to resurrecting The Red Boa was the incredible Bountiful Visionary Women's Conference held by Shiloh Sophia McCloud and the Cosmic Cowgirls. When I attended the conference I found myself in Healdsburg, California, in the amazing working studio of artist Sophia McCloud. I found myself in the midst of an incredible circle of women. We were there to share and absorb inspiration. The space was safe, sacred and supportive. I hadn't planned on speaking about The Red Boa. I was open to a new and interesting experience. I went not knowing anyone. Yet I did find myself sharing during a circle time my intent to write a book called Life's Too Short Not to Wear a Red Boa. What I did already know is that there is great power in speaking things out loud to a group of people. Speaking your intentions in a public arena can set things in motion. I wrote more about the conference and shared photos which you can find here.

Since that conference I began writing even more. I created this blog to explore topics and share the types of stories that are to fill the pages of Life's Too Short Not to Wear a Red Boa. I also started planning a playshop for friends, a gathering where we would share, be creative, color and paint. I went and got a business license and named my business Red Boa Productions. I designed my own logo and created business cards. Everything fell into place smoothly and easily. It is this feeling of being in synch with something greater than myself that is very empowering and inspiring.

As a little girl I used to sit at my moms typewriter and compose stories. I have always dreamed of being a published writer. My vision has begun to grow and I find that anytime I am in a position to encourage others to believe in themselves and improve their self-esteem it brings me great joy. I hope to explore all the possibilities of playing that role more often in the lives of others.

I feel that I am walking, skipping and hopping along a path that is right for me. I don't know what is up ahead exactly. The Red Boa Playshop was fun and inspiring for me to present. Are there more of those in my future? Possibly yes. I enjoy gathering with women in circles. I believe that art is healing and therapeutic. I believe that women circles can be a safe, sacred and supportive place to share and be inspired.

If you want to receive your own personal email message from the Universe click here.
If you are interested in the heart pendant or to check out more of Becky Sharp's amazing jewelry designs click here.

Sunday, February 22, 2009


Breathing Exercise ~

Close your eyes and take a deep breath. Breathe out. Take another deep breath. Breathe it all out. Again another deep breath. Breathe it all out.

Continue the deep breaths in and out. Slowly as you do this begin to feel that with each breath in you are drawing in wisdom, support, guidance, inner-knowing, serenity and love.

If you are holding onto any anxiety or fears at this time begin to feel that with each breathe out you are releasing your anxiety. You are releasing your fear. Let it go. Let the anxiety and fear drift away. See it become as light as a feather, float up and dissipate.

As you breathe out any anxiety and fear continue to breathe in all the support and love you need and deserve and remind yourself of the strong and powerful woman you are today – right now.

As you continue to breathe in and out I also invite you to conjure up an image of yourself as a little girl. Picture yourself if you can as you were at a favorite age. Think back to a time when you loved to play. Consider what made you happy as a child. Maybe it was riding your bike, running or building things. Perhaps you loved to read and make up your own stories. You might have loved to perform for others or just yourself and you sang or danced or played an instrument. You might have found joy in being a caretaker of animals or you found you loved to color and paint. Think back to what brought your spirit joy.

As you continue to breathe I ask you to remember and hold on to that image today. That little girl is still inside you. She is still very present. She hasn’t ever left you. And as you continue to breathe remember that she is still with you.

As you breathe I invite you to now return to the present you, the adult you. Breathe in and out and know that you are a strong and powerful woman now. You may not always feel powerful but you are. You are a strong and powerful woman. You are the creator of your life. Breathe in all the support and love you need and deserve and remind yourself of the strong and powerful woman you are today, right now.

Let us all take one last breath in and then release.



We cannot achieve world peace
without first achieving peace
within ourselves...inner peace.

In an atmosphere of
hatred, anger, competition and violence
no lasting peace
can be achieved.

These negative and destructive forces
must be overcome by
compassion, love and altruism,
which are the eseential teaching of
the Buddha.

Tenzin Gyatso
H.H. The XIVth Dalai Lama

Meditation ~ Embrace

Imagine Peace
is a full
and loving
with wings.

Imagine it flying
around the world
and sharing
with all
of humanity.

is present,
fear dissipates
and disappears.

is present
we embrace
one another
as brothers
and sisters.

is present
we treat
one another
with respect
and kindness.

Imagine Peace
and flying
around the earth
and into
the Universe
to share the



Monday, February 16, 2009

She Found Her Path

A good friend and very talented artist, Susan Apolonio, painted this for me and gave it to me as a gift on Sunday. It is called She Found Her Path. Such an amazing and stunning painting. Looking forward to framing it and hanging it up.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Aha Moment

I experienced an "Aha" moment yesterday morning. It was due to thinking about this last weekend and how the crying and whining of two-year-olds can push my buttons.

When my children seem to be crying and whining for no apparently good reason (at least that is how it appears to me) I can at first roll with it. Yet as it continues and they seem to drone on and on I find myself cringing inside and the irritation grows with each additional sound that comes out in that loud and unappealing way.

Eventually I find myself even growing angry because I so long for them to stop doing it. I begin to wish I was elsewhere and that I lived in a different house. It can feel really challenging to me to live in an environment where someone is whining and screaming loudly.

When I spoke of this to a friend I could finally find some humor in it all when she said simply "You have some really bad roommates." Yes, that is it I responded. My mini-roomies are messy, loud, whiny, overly-emotional, selfish, can't do laundry or clean properly, pick their noses and eat their boogers (we're really working on that one) and get this - they even poop their pants and even worse I have to clean it up. In an adult situation I would never put up with roommates like this. I should know as during my college years and post college years I had a total of 34 roommates. Most were great, many evolved into wonderful friendships, but there were a few that left a bit to be desired and it was a relief when they finally moved out.

The problem is I can't really ask my mini-roomies to move out and my moving out isn't really an option either. The only option really lies within me. I don't want to be a tense and stressed out person and I sometimes get there during the course of a day when I think I just can't take anymore outbursts.

My first step was to reflect on what is happening internally for me that leads to my getting so stressed. This is what emerged in my thoughts. When my children cry my first inclination is to soothe, comfort, solve the problem, entertain...anything to make them happy and get them to stop crying. Perhaps this is partially hard-wired into humans so that we are inclined to care for our small children attentively. Yet, when I try several different methods of soothing, comforting, pleasing and entertaining and my child unreasonably won't stop the crying and instead continues, this is the point I begin to grow frustrated. I am wondering very logically and Spock-like "why are you still crying, why won't you stop, see how hard I am working, see how hard I am trying to make you happy, to please you?????? Huh - can't you see that?"

What I have to remind myself is that first of all they are only two years old. They can't process or think about these things as adults do. Even some adults don't think things through all the time. Secondly, they are little bundles of juicy emotional passionfruit. They wear their emotions on their sleeves, along with whatever else they've gotten into during the day and that most likely includes boogers. They are still learning how to express themselves in order to get what they want and have their needs met. We are slowly trying to teach them that screaming to get what one wants is not necessary in this house. One just needs to ask politely. I am slowly seeing that we are making headway in this area as they are very sweet and say Thank you, You're welcome and so on.

I think what may help the most though is to come to terms with a few basic facts. They are:
  • I cannot please my children.
  • I cannot make them happy.
  • I cannot fix everything.
  • I cannot change anyone.
I may be able to get my daughters to giggle, but really they have to be in the mood or the frame of mind to giggle. I may be able to soothe tears due to a bruised knee, but only if the child is open to me soothing her. It is so much like the saying "you can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink." I can offer my love and care to my daughters but they have to be open to receiving it. My "aha" realization is that it is the expectations I place on myself to try and make them happy that makes me so damn miserable. If I release these expectations and instead make peace with the fact I cannot please my children, I am hopeful that this will lead to my being more at peace and a whole lot less stressed.