Hello friends! You didn’t know it, but I have been away for 7 days and am finally home. (Thanks to all who left comments on last week’s two pre-scheduled posts! I will respond soon, I promise, and return the visit.) Ah, home, how I love thee. We were on a cruise with no access to the online world and I totally shocked myself by realizing how much I love being connected to all my online friends and classes. This mini world I’ve created for myself keeps me grounded in such a delightful way.
Fill me in on what you’ve been up to lately. Here’s a quick update on what I’ve been learning and reading over the past month.
The most important work I’ve done this past month is because of this mastermind community. They have been phenomenally loving and supportive, complimented and purchased my artwork, encouraged me to define some boundaries for myself and my space, and helped me see that I need more self-care in my daily life. I think I see a future blog post idea here, don’t you? Anyway, check out the new Soulful Life Sanctuary that just opened July 1. It is FABULOUS!
I began a new year-long photography class, Be Still 52, with one of my favorite people in the world, Kim Klassen. This one, as I wrote about at length here, is as much about still life photography as much as it is about slowing down and taking care of myself.
I can’t tell you how much I am enjoying this year-long journey, Project Light Year with Liv Lane: a soulful journey to your brightest year yet. In June, we focused on gratitude. To be grateful, we must be comfortable with giving and receiving goodness, which is pretty hard actually! I learned that the heart of gratitude comes from recognizing that most of the goodness around us comes from outside of ourselves – some one or some thing beyond ourselves – which in effect requires some level of humility. It was interesting and good stuff this month, as it always is.
I’m taking a class through Viva Institute about opening to my innate intuitive abilities and listening to that “still, small voice within.” I am slightly nervous about sharing more because there is so much I don’t know yet. Let me just tell you that I’ve been having fun with it and will tell you more soon.
In June, for One Little Word 2014 with Ali Edwards, I checked in with myself and my word. “Finding ways to cherish myself has been a fun challenge. I am actively tuning in to my intuition. I appreciate the FULLNESS of my life. I am feeling really good.” You can read it here.
* * * * *
June books: The Middlesteins: A Novel by Jami Attenberg
I think this novel is supposed to be about emptiness… in our lives and in our stomachs (it’s about a compulsive overeater). This is about a dysfunctional Jewish family and the relationships within it. I have to say it’s full of heartache, tragedy, and regret… not an uplifting read, but well-written and a good story.
A Still, Small Voice: A Psychic’s Guide to Awakening Intuition Echo Bodine
OK so you say the word “psychic” and immediately, if you’re like me, the person loses credibility. This isn’t like that. This book is amazing… all about intuition and tuning into your gut reaction. It’s readable, humorous, and very informative.
The Snow Queen: A Novel by Michael Cunningham
I absolutely love the way Michael Cunningham writes. He subtly moves from one character’s POV to another, rounding out this novel of two brothers and their mid-life searching with heartbreaking truth. I could practically feel this story and the hopes and dreams of each character.
An Adventurer’s Guide to the Jungles of Time and Space by Mike Dooley of tut.com
Mike Dooley has a way of making me feel inspired and loved… his daily Notes from the Universe are a highlight of my morning e-mails. This compelling little story reveals the origins of space, time, matter, and miracles. It offers a unique way to assess your place in reality and to begin creating major life changes. Lighthearted yet philosophical, it challenges its readers to re-think the very meaning of life.
Love Life by Rob Lowe
“I want to be seen for all I am, not just what you see on the surface. But it is up to me to let you in, to give you the keys to know me in that way, and to do the work of connecting beyond what is comfortable and easy.”
This is so timely as I really ponder how to connect with people authentically. I loved his first autobiography, Stories I Only Tell My Friends, so much that I was looking forward to reading this one as soon as I heard it was coming out. I now talk about Rob Lowe like I am best friends with him… I feel like he’s so down-to-earth and, well, human. Did anyone see him visiting with Oprah about this book? Does anyone want to have this book just to be able to stare at the cover all day? Anyway… this memoir holds more stories about work, life, raising his sons, and love and marriage. Highly recommend.
Carry On, Warrior: The Power of Embracing Your Messy, Beautiful Life by Glennon Doyle Melton
I listened to Glennon read this on a car trip and loved her gentle and approachable stories about her life. I’ve loved her blog, Momastery, because it is simply hilarious. Glennon writes about relationships, marriage, and raising kids with an overarching message to women: you are not alone. I literally laughed out loud several times because I identified with her stories so much.Change happens, if it needs to, when we become aware of what we are, not when we try to become what we are not.
* * * * *
I am also reading an entry a day in The Book of Awakening: Having the Life You Want by Being Present to the Life You Have by Mark Nepo. My favorite passage from June: “For me, finding where I fit in the world feels a lot like spiritual fishing. The vast, mysterious ocean of experience keeps calling, and whether it is by buckets of question or nets of honesty, I keep hauling up food from the days. I keep hauling in shells and pearls and seaweed from a common depth that no one can see, and then I spend time cleaning what I’ve found and hearing what it has to say.”
* * * * *
What have you been reading lately? And are you on Goodreads? I’d love to connect there.
Everything I’ve Ever Read (I think)
More monthly book reports