Monday, December 28, 2009

I love receiving holiday letters. It seems like families write down all of their big milestones and give updates on each family member. I've always wanted to write one and send one out to friends and family, but feel somewhat weird because I am single and would only be giving updates on myself. Now I can write my holiday letter, all about me, on my, all about me, blog. And yes, its long because I do like to talk about myself.

Dear Friends and Family,

Thank you all for being in my life and for your love and support this past year. 2009 has been a big year for me and I would like to share month by month some of my highlights with you.

January: I re-learned to be grateful for my body. I volunteered to massage someone who was recently injured and staying in a quadriplegic rehab center at the U. He is around my age and very active and alive, but had some crazy accident and is now experiencing paralysis from the chest down. Briefly, I learned what this injury encompasses and it really shook my world. A gained a new friend and a whole new perspective.

February: Two things: First, I attended the big premiere of Minor Details. I worked on the film as a make-up artist with Becky. Please check out our work- you won't be disappointed. A big thank you to Melissa for the awesome hook-up. Secondly, I purchased Remembering Wholeness by Carol Tuttle for $1.00 back in January at DI, but finally read it in February. I re-read sections of it all the time- her writings have transformed me. By the way, the best time to shop goodwill is right after the New Year people are getting rid of stuff left and right. (January would also be a good month to dumpster dive- if you are into that :))

March: The coolest memory in March would have to be an awesome road trip to Moab. We hiked through Arches and then through Goblin Valley. Sadly, I had never done either before. It is so beautiful and its so close. It makes me sad to think of the arches colapsing- best not to go there or I'll get all Al Gore ish. I love getting outside and witnessing the Earth's beauty. However, the best part was being there with friends and getting awesome sunglasses.

April: This was a huge month for me because this is my Golden birthday year. I turned 24 on the 24th. WOWzers! Heather made my birthday special. She is so thoughtful that way. I spent the whole day with her and the kiddos. We went to lunch, a bakery, on a walk, and opened gifts which were all wrapped in gold paper. About a week before my b-day, I went on a road trip with Melissa to California- which was so awesome. I stayed at a sweet cabin in Lake Tahoe. (L.T. is an energy vortex). I explored San Francisco and played in the ocean. Mostly, I enjoyed meeting new friends. Overall, it was a perfect month!

May: Big milestone- I quit my day job. I had been working for an outsourcing company since June of 2008. I hated the work and it was stealing my soul away. The last few months were terrible. So one day I said. 'I am threw with this.' I have never looked back. I met some great friends along the way- who I still am friends with and I learned about global networking and outsourcing. I don't regret it for one second, but I am so glad I am threw with it.

June: I attended a doula training conference; thus, fulfilling a huge goal. I have wanted to be a doula for years and finally things aligned. I manifested this, pre-sold some gift certificates to pay for it, and am so glad I did. I really am quite proud of myself. I wasn't sure if I could do it- and I almost backed out, but didn't. I met some amazing ladys who I am still in contact with- the whole weekend was magical.

July: My family took a vacation to Michigan. My dad's family is from Michigan and they all live there. We don't make it out as often as we would like to. It is sort of a trip to visit with family members, who (unfortunately) I barely know, and they share my eyes and sense of humor and I automatically love them. My favorite past time is hanging out on the beach- that is enough for me. I am so happy to have these memories in Michigan and hope for many more.

August: I have the goal to see all of my favorite artists in concert. I went to Bret Dennen in April which was the best time- I sang and danced the night away. In August, Iron & Wine came for free- which was even better! Two artists are crossed off my list in 2009! Anyway, what made Iron & Wine so special was that I went to the concert alone. I couldn't find anyone to go with because as usual it was last minute. I usually back out if I have to do something alone, but I went anyway and had the time of my life. It was an outside summer concert- all I can say is it was a perfect night (except for the girl singing Flightless Bird, American Mouth in my ear).

September: Great month, but I need to preface with some history. First off, I got rid of my massage office in August, due to costs, which was as depressing as hell. Let me back up here, in July I found another office to work out of- to try and save my office. I got the job on the spot because it just so happens they were looking for a new therapist. I didn't know how great my new office was for me because I was still so upset about trying to save my office and was fighting a loosing battle. Alas, I got rid of my office in August, and was super depressed for weeks at the new office because I felt like a huge failure. Fast forward to September, I began flourishing at my new office. I get along well with all of the people I work with. To get to the point, feeling blessed and fulfilled where I am was a massive accomplishment because having my own office meant a lot me and giving it up was an ego crusher. Another career advancement, I attended my last birth (to get me doula certification- yes, I am a pirate). Previous to this, I had two other births and a six week Hypnobabies class.

October: For all those who believe in manifestation listen to this beautiful experience unveil: I had a job interview set-up on the 10th in Las Vegas and no money to stay there. As a solution, I was corresponding with a person on KSL to trade massage for a night in his condo in Vegas. He wasn't being very responsive even though he had confirmed that he would like to trade. It was the night before I was supposed to leave and this guy was being wishy-washy so I called him up and got a little assertive and forthright. The end result was a two night paid stay in the Greek Isle resort. Talk about awesome. To top it off, I met a friend in Vegas and we had a Vegas vacation. It was miraculous. Another perk, I landed the job- it's in Hawaii- working on a cruise ship. I haven't accepted it yet because I am still getting my license transferred. Also, this month I took a road trip with my dad to Durango. My brother and his family were moving to Utah and needed some help with moving their stuff. I loved the drive, the time with my family, and I knew we were helping out. Durango is beautiful and sadly I only visited twice during the 6 or 7 years my brother lived there.

November: At the first of this month I sort of got obsessed with living off the land- and in parent's yard that means apples. I was overtaken by the simple beauty and bounty of an apple tree. (I also picked my neighbor’s apples). Aside from being grateful for the apples and extended warm weather, I've reflected on my life's happiness. I have a lot of happiness amidst the struggles. I have a career, options, a place to live, and I have many friends and family. I feel surrounded by love and know that I can't take that for granted. I enjoyed Thanksgiving and was happy to spend it with friends and family.

December: I am proud to say that I saw my first UFO. Dugway happened and I didn't see it and I was totally bummed. Then on December 12th I was woken up by a flash of bluish green light in my room. I looked out the window and saw the flash across the sky two more times- which resulted in a power outage for more than an hour. I was freaking out and woke up my parents. My mom thought it must have been a car or something. It was not a car! I am not alone in my witnessing, I found another person who saw the same thing. I am a believer now. I saw a UFO! I am also looking forward to the blue moon Dec. 31st. After all, blues moons only happen 'once in a blue moon'.

Thank you if you read this long post. I hope your year was filled with happiness, hope, love, and light.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Christmas Cheer

Thanks to Sara and Heather's persistance I put up my Christmas playlist. Sadly, I couldn't get The Killer's new song Happy Birthday Guadalupe. Each year The Killer's release a new Christmas song and all the proceeds go to the charity RED. Take a minute and watch their video, Happy Birthday Guadalupe. You will like it because A.) Luke Perry is in it oo la la B.) It's a Mexican Christmas and C.) It's the Killers!!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Pioneer Spirit

To get into the Thanksgiving spirit I read a book about a pioneer who became my hero. Her name is Mary Ingles, not the 'Little House on the Prairie' Mary Ingles. This Mary Ingles is the one who watched family members get slaughtered by Shawnee Indians, then was taken hostage by them, through the grace of God escaped enslavement, and walked 1000 miles home.

Mary was 23 at the time, with two young boys, and nine months pregnant- due any day. She and her boys and her sister in law were not slaughtered in the attack and were forced to walk or ride horseback over 500 miles down the Ohio river. Mary had her baby while she was in captivity on the trail. For the next few days, she rode horseback and nearly bled to death, while at the same time feeding her brand new baby girl. During her journey down the Ohio river, she suffered and bled, cared for her now three children, and memorized the terrain. She had no education about her surroundings because she was one of the first white people to explore that territory. While on the journey, one of the the leaders, Wildcat, recognized her strength and began to favor her among the captives.

When they reached the village, by custom all captives are forced to run down a line while the other villagers stand at the sides and beat them with sticks and alike objects. The purpose is to initiate the captives and find their strength. Mary and her children were exempt from this ritual because the person before her who ran down the line died and because Wildcat plead with the Chief to spare her. After the initiation, the captives are sent to work in the village. While working, other villagers are noting their skills so they can be adopted and put into Native families.

Mary was separated from her sister-in-law and put to work sewing shirts for the villagers and a nearby trading post. Wildcat came to Mary for a shirt. While getting measured, he asked her to be his wife and he would adopt her children. This was a promising offer because it was expected that Wildcat would one day be chief. Mary, hoping that her husband was still alive, refused Wildcat's offer and as a consequence was sold into slavery. Wildcat adopted her two son's. She was left with her baby and a full time sewing job at a trading post. Helping her sew and also taking turns nursing her baby was a Squaw. Mary was really sad about this, but also relieved in a way because she had much to do and little time and energy.

The trading company was planning a trip up the river (in the direction of Mary's home land) to salt some meet and prepare and gather food for the winter. Mary went because she had already been to the salt river where meat is preserved. On the journey to the river she met up with Ghtel, a large, fierce Dutch woman. Together they gathered food and prepared meals. Mary determined to escape, convinced she could not spend another night with the crew, planned her escape. She persuaded Ghtel to join her.She had to make a choice, was she going to abandon her baby? She knew she couldn't do the trek in the cold wilderness with no supplies with a baby. She left her baby in the care of the Squaw woman. Mary and Ghtel fled the company each with a blanket, one tomahawk, and a spear. They ventured out alone to gather food and hit the trail.

Mary led them to her home land according to memory. They started in autumn along the Ohio river. They ate berries, acorns, fish, and nuts. However, autumn turned to winter all to quickly and food grew sparse. Together these women traveled days without food. Their limbs were freezing, their shoes fell apart, and extreme stress led to contention. These two survived on Mary's dream to return home to her husband.

After some time with no food, Ghtel started going crazy. She threatened to eat Mary on several occasions. They were each other's survival, enemies, best friends, and warmth. With each fight they lost supplies. Soon they had no tomahawk, one blanket, no clothes or shoes left on their bodies, and no spear. They dug the frozen ground looking for bugs, roots, and worms. Naked, cold, bleeding, and crazy these women trekked until one day Ghtel bit Mary, attempting to eat her. Mary fought Ghtel for her life. Mary crossed the freezing river for safety. That night apart from each was bitter cold and unbearable. Miraculously, they both survived the night lonely and desperate. The following morning they continued trekking with a huge river between them. Usually they were in view of each other which lessened the pains of loneliness. They reached a fork in the river with a mountain to cross and hoped to see each other on the other side. Mary climbed the frost covered cliff only to find one more cliff. As her body ate itself for nourishment and warmth she slept the night and was relieved to find herself alive the next morning. She again climbed another snow speckled cliff. On the other side she saw a house with smoke leaving the chimney. She had never seen a more beautiful site in her life. At this point in her journey she could not longer walk on her bloody frosty feet. Forced to crawl, she made her way to the house. Coming out of the house was her friend and neighbor. He didn't recognize her at first because of her skeletal appearance and her hair turned bright white due to the extreme stress she endured. While re-acquainting herself with her neighbor she passed out. Luckily he nursed he back to health. Mary still had at least another day's travel before reaching her home. After only days of being cared for, she again (with the assistance of her neighbor) began journeying home. She made it home to no husband. All of this time, her husband had been having his own adventures trying to find Mary. Within a very short time, they found him and brought him back to Mary. Their homecoming was indeed emotional and loving, but something had changed in Mary's eyes. Her experiences left her separated from him in certain ways.

She tried persuading her neighbor to go and find Ghtel, but after hearing her survival story, he and the town refused to go and find Ghtel the cannibal. Mary was devastated because no one could really understand the things that they had gone through together and although Ghtel, tried to eat a few times, she was still her loving friend. Finally they agreed to go find Ghtel. They found her alive and brought her to Mary. Their reuniting was difficult and yet happy and completely normal.

Mary and her husband lived a long life together. They had more children. Eventually Mary was reunited with one of her son's that Wildcat adopted. The younger of the two sons died two weeks after separation from Mary, his mother. And she never heard of her baby girl again. She and her husband bought back her sister in law. Mary's husband died at 50 something and she died at 80 something. Her son wrote her adventures down. And she is a living legend and my new hero.

Yes, this is a long post, but think of it this way : I just saved you from reading approx 400 pages of Follow the River by James Alexander Thom, a national best seller.