We are less than two weeks to Thanksgiving and the start of the holiday season. It's a time for family and friends and being thankful for all the blessings in our lives.
I love November. The main reason is that I LOVE Thanksgiving. The days get shorter and the weather is changeable: the days are warm, the nights are cold and the wind blows away the end of the leaves. My favorite time of day is twilight as dusk become night and there is a little glow left from the sun. The sky is so beautiful.
If I happen to look through the leafless trees during twilight and see that beautiful sky, I am always transported back to my childhood. It's a somewhat silly memory but I love it. It's a day when I could walk home from school (I normally took the bus) and go to the local library. On this day, I sat on the floor between the shelves of the library, reading Alfred Hitchcock and the Three Investigators. (I've always loved Hitch) When it was time to walk home, I walked along the sidewalk avoiding the overgrown bushes, kicking the last of the leaves and feeling pretty damn independent. It was a 15 minute, uneventful walk, but I can still feel the cool air and smell the leaves. It makes me smile.
What memories will you create this month? Let's create great memories with our friends and families and spread the love.
Wishing you peace, love and sparks of inspiration, Deb
My blog posts in May 2015 were about Reinvention (R is for Reinvention and Reinvention Revisited). I discussed reinvention cycles as defined by Pythagoras and briefly defined the meaning of each year in our 9 year reinvention cycles.
For the next few posts, I thought it would be useful (and fun) to work through the personal years in my current reinvention cycle. It will provide insight into what happened to me in each year and breathe a little life into the definitions.
If you are wondering what your personal year is, simply add together the month and day of your birth with the current year. Mine looks like this: December 30 = 12 + 30 + 2015 = 2057 = 2+0+5+7 = 14 = 1+4 = 5. 2015 is a personal year 5 for me. Remember, personal years run January to December with the calendar, not birthday to birthday.
The beginning of my current reinvention cycle and my personal year 1 was 2011. (12+30+2011=2053=2+0+5+3=10=1+0=1). My life in 2011 was pretty interesting. I retired at the end of 2010 and didn't have a plan for 2011 or beyond. It really was a new beginning and that's the simple definition of a personal year 1 - a new beginning. It's time to plant seeds that will grow over the next 9 years. It's also a year where you will work alone and own your strength. I experienced all of this in 2011.
The events of my personal year 9 (2010) and 1 (2011) are the basis for the article "My Seasons of Transformation" in Women Living Consciously, Book II; my journey from executive to entrepreneur.
2011 was also my year of serial volunteerism and is the basis of the article "Volunteer to Transform" in the upcoming book Keys to a Good Life: Wisdom to Unlock Your Power Within (expected publication December 2015).
2012 was a personal year 11 for me. Did I write 11? Shouldn't it be 2? Let's make Pythagoras proud and do the math: December 30 2012 = 12 + 30 + 2012 = 2054 = 11, and if we reduce it further, you know the 11 is also a 2. 11 is a special number with a higher energetic vibration, therefore we don't reduce it to a single digit. A personal year 11 is a year of Divine Illumination! A year for inspired downloads of information, a year of transformation, a year of love and relationships and a year when you are highly intuitive! And I experienced most of that during 2012.
For all the calls I made to friends and colleagues in 2011 who did not return them (because you work alone in a PY1), my phone rang non-stop in 2012 and I began growing a network of friends and colleagues to support Real Life Spark! It was the year I personally transformed from retired executive to entrepreneur and created Wilber Consulting LLC now Real Life Spark! I also turned 50 in 2012 and I exercised my intuition non-stop. There were lots of new friends and new business relationships that continue to encourage me each day! It was good year.
I find it challenging to be present with my personal year all the time. I typically remind myself of the energy of my personal year when something goes right or when something goes wrong. And it's great fun to look back on your reinvention cycles and recall the big events of each year and review them through the lens of the personal year and reinvention cycles.
Next post: 2013 and 2014, Personal Years 3 and 4. Stay tuned for more fun. Please post observations and questions below!
Wishing you peace, love and sparks of reinvention! Deb
It's time to talk intuition again, one of my favorite topics! From my June 5, 2015 post, let's recap: "As a Professional Intuitive Coach and a student of intuition, I know that intuition is the ultimate GPS for your unique road map to this life experience. It has all the answers and all the guidance you will need. We simply need to tune into our intuition and pay attention. When you ask yourself 'why am I here' or what is my life's purpose?' Get quiet and listen to your heart. What are the messages you are hearing? What are the signs you are seeing? What are the feelings you are feeling?"
If you are not familiar with your intuition, the good news is there are resources to help you recognize and strengthen your intuitive abilities. I have always been aware and tried to follow my intuition. Sometimes our logical mind gets in the way of our intuitive mind. The more I study, practice and use my intuition the stronger it gets and the more confident I am in following it.
This year I was introduced to the work of Simone Wright and her book "First Intelligence: Using the Science and Spirit of Intuition". I read the book during April and May. I had the opportunity to attend a full day workshop with Simone in October. It was an informative and interactive workshop where we discussed intuition and completed intuition exercises to gain a better understanding.
Simone describes the components of intuition, in her book, as the Intuition Triad: Peace, Precision and Perception.
I often write about paying attention and the signs that appear for me. My maternal grandmother's hallmarks are pennies and rice pudding. My paternal grandparents are a pair of cardinals that fly in front of me while driving or walking. It's pretty cool when you know the signs.
But what do the signs mean? How can you tell that it's a sign. That's where your intuition comes into play. What are the intentions you are setting or questions you are asking? Your intuition needs focus. Your can set your intention through conscious or subconscious thoughts or even in writing in your journal. We each have a unique way of communicating with our intuition. Once your intuition has focus, what are you noticing? Are you aware of your thoughts? Do they contain the information. Do you hear a song on the radio where the title or lyrics spark a thought? Remember, your intuition can be a flash of insight or feeling. It can happen quickly; pay attention.
My experience is that my grandparents are usually bring me comforting thoughts about an issue I have. When I see the cardinals, I let the issue go. My grandmother brings me love. When I need a hug or a little extra love, I find a penny in my path or notice rice pudding. I feel the love.
I challenge you to use your intuition. Give it focus by setting your intention. It can be a simple question, for example, where should I go for dinner tonight? Once you have set your intention, pay attention to everything, the people you meet, the songs on the radio, the ads on television, etc. What catches your eye? Once you have an answer, try it on. Imagine yourself at the chosen restaurant, how do you feel? Does it feel good? You can make a intuitive choice.
Share your experiences in the comments below.
Wishing you peace, love and sparks of intuition! Deb
Where did September go? It was a busy month for me and if you were looking for the September newsletter in your inbox, you did not find it. I simply ran out of time. Here's my story....
Unfortunately, my mother landed in the hospital in late August prompting a more than 2 week stay in an acute rehab facility. At the same time, I was preparing for a 12 day vacation in Italy. The universe is always watching out for us and in this instance, it managed one of my biggest vacation concerns - I did not have to worry (as much) about my mother and father while I was in Italy. More than a month later, Mom is home, getting stronger and smiling. I recently posted a blog about Mom and the importance of Beauty Therapy
Italy was a wonderful vacation with 14 friends. Can you imagine coordinating 15 people for 12 days in a foreign country without travel professionals? We planned for more than a year and used our delegation skills so that everyone participated. It was a celebration trip for one of my dear friend's milestone birthdays! It was a great celebration and vacation with lots of friends, food and wine!. Here are a few photos:
Upon my return from Italy, my favorite volunteer event was happening - RUMMAGE! So I went from vacation mode to volunteer mode. The weather was beautiful in the Northeast until the actual sale, then it rained and was cold for most of the sale days. While the weather may have dampened our sales, it could not dampen our spirit. As Rummage ended for another year, my heart was full and I look forward to the Spring.
So, its been a bit busy here at Real Life Spark! Please forgive the absence of the September Newsletter and I hope you enjoy the change in format in this month's newsletter.
Wishing you peace, love and sparks, Deb
My mother is beautiful. OK, I am biased but aren't all children? We believe our mother is the most beautiful woman in the world. Looking at pictures of my mother as a teen, young woman and beyond, you will see that she was always perfectly coiffed, a beautiful face enhanced by makeup with stylish clothes and shoes. Always. Even when money was tight, there was always a couple of dollars to maintain our exterior beauty.
My mother is beautiful on the inside as well. Always caring for others, helping her parents as they aged, volunteering at church, taking care of our family. She has a big heart and a big smile which makes her extra beautiful.
Over the past several years, she has been ill and landed in the hospital on several occasions. The first item I would bring to her was her eyebrow pencil. Not her cell phone. Not her wallet. Her eyebrow pencil. You see, my mother's god given beauty didn't involve a lot of eyebrow hairs and she has always penciled them in perfectly. And it has become a little joke between us that she looks sick until she puts on her eyebrows. She always humors me and pencils them in, then she looks like mom.
As a variety of neurological issues slowly steal my mother's memory and desire to maintain her beauty, I remain a steadfast soldier in the fight to keep her beauty routine alive! We make sure she gets her hair done every week, even though she sleeps on it and flattens the back. We make sure she has stylish clothing and shoes to wear, even though they need to be practical and comfortable. She gets manicures and pedicures on a regular basis, even though her nails are shorter. And I make sure she has eyebrows, the frame for her beautiful face and eyes. She may not always want to apply her makeup or remember which lotion comes first, but she can draw on her eyebrows like a celebrity makeup artist.
It would be easy to give up and not maintain mom's beauty routine. Her doctors insist that it's best to keep her as active as we can in activities she always enjoyed. I am sure they were referring to shopping and travelling but for me its important that she continues to look like mom.
My father, as her primary caregiver, loves her regardless of makeup, hair and clothing. They have been married 54 years and have seen the good, the bad and the ugly. God bless him and all care-givers, their job is a challenging one. Making sure she is safe and clean are his top priorities.
My priority is beauty therapy. When I visit, I make sure mom has eyebrows and perhaps a little lipstick. I fluff up the back of her hair and review her clothes and shoes. I exasperate my father when I start changing her top or switching her shoes for a more stylish outfit. Her appearance is important to me and its important to her, even if she can't or won't communicate that. My mom is still here and stylish.
Don't we all feel better and stand a little taller when we have taken care of ourselves? Sometimes its simply a shower after a long hard day. Sometimes it’s a new outfit or new pair of shoes. And sometimes, it’s the little things, like penciling in eyebrows and applying a little lipstick that puts the spark back into your soul!
Wishing you peace, love and sparks. Deb
Thank you for your kind notes and messages following the June newsletter about our journey with my mom and Alzheimer's. The journey continues with some days better than others and the entire family (including Mom!) trying to figure out this disease. We wake up each day with renewed hope and strength to carry on. It's challenging and we are leaning on each other for support. We are also reaching out to the community and thankfully finding resources to assist us. Thank you again for your continued support and love.
In other news, I have joined the Good Life team at Change Your Attitude, Change Your Life. Yay! The experts on the team provide tips, strategies and information for personal growth, improved health and self-empowerment. It's been an incredible experience affording me the opportunity to write, provide tips and reach more people. You can visit the main website here and my page here. You will find my article in the August edition on page 38 of the ezine entitled "A Fresh Start In Fall".
Wishing you peace, love and sparks! Deb
It's time to get personal and share what's going on in my life.
Right after the June newsletter was published, our family received the diagnosis we were dreading: my mother, Barbara, has Alzheimer's. While this was not a surprising diagnosis, her memory and health have been failing for a couple of years, it was devastating. She is only 76. Our hearts are broken and we are lost.
The good news is her overall physical health is stable, and her memory is ok. She may not remember what she had for breakfast, but she knows the members of her family and her closest friends. Who needs to be be quizzed on breakfast! We have an excellent team of doctors working with us and our team is growing as we reach out to elder care experts.
It wasn't lost on me that we received the diagnosis on Friday June 19th; Saturday June 20th was the 1st anniversary of my Aunt Alice's passing from Alzheimer's Dementia (Mom's sister) and Sunday June 21st was the Longest Day, Alzheimer's Awareness Day. I looked up and said thanks for the signs, I got the message!
So while we figure out a plan over the next few months, we will also take action, getting involved with the Alzheimer's Association and other advocacy groups. Mom taught us to never give up, so we won't. Game on!
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
It's June and the summer soltice is approaching on Sunday June 21, 2015 at 12:39 PM on the east coast. As a kid (and as an adult) I love watching the days grow longer and the longest day, June 21st, is bittersweet. I enjoy the light of the longest day but know that the next day will be a bit shorter and we are heading toward the shortest day. The summer soltice is more importantly the first day of Summer! And I love summer - it means spending time outdoors, going to the beach, going on vacation and another year of Camp Aunt Debbie!
I am blessed to have a nephew and niece who like to spend time with me. In 2003, Camp Aunt Debbie (CAD) was born out of necessity for my nephew. He spent a week with me and we created a week of fun, education and little rule breaking. It always includes an amusement park, a museum, and ice cream for breakfast. We stay up late, watch movies, sleep in and order pizza. It's great fun and I am looking forward to creating memories with my niece this year in August! While there is no age limit to CAD, my nephew has a busy summer full of work and activities. Thankfully, we will have the opportunity to spend time together in Disney in July.
What are your plans for the summer? What memories will you create? It doesn't take a lot of money to create and build memories but it does take one of our most precious resources, time. So find a few minutes to spend time with the people you love.
Ice cream for breakfast, anyone?
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
I can't believe its June and we have arrived at the end of the acronym SPARK! If you are just joining me in the discovery of SPARK, let's recap. S is for Story, P is for Passion, A is for Awareness, R is for Reinvention and K is for Knowing. (scroll down to view prior posts) When you put all of that together, like the ingredients in a recipe, you find your SPARK or your life's purpose. Defining your life's purpose is never simple as a recipe. It is always journey, one to be embraced and enjoyed.
Knowing is another word for intuition. My favorite definition of intuition is 'knowing without knowing how you know'. Confused? Don't be. Knowing or intuition can take the form of a flash of insight, a gut feeling, or an immediate recognition. You simply know something to be true. We are all intuitive and can benefit from the wisdom of our intuition. How often do you recognize and listen to your intuition?
Have you ever called someone and they said, "I was just thinking about you!" or "I was just going to call you!". This is your intuition at work and this phenomena is known as Telephone Telepathy. I like to use this example in workshops because nearly 80% of us have experienced telephone telepathy and its easily understood.
When you think about another person you are sending thoughts (and energy) to them. They receive the energy and think of you, making the connection. Has a person's name popped into you head and then you thought about them. Then a communication occurs - phone call, e-mail, or text message? This is an example of an energetic experience and your intuition at work.
So, how does this relate to our Life's Purpose? As a Professional Intuitive Coach and a student of intuition, I know that intuition is the ultimate GPS for your unique road map to this life experience. It has all the answers and all the guidance you will need. We simply need to tune into our intuition and pay attention. When you ask yourself 'why am I here' or what is my life's purpose?' Get quiet and listen to your heart. What are the messages you are hearing? What are the signs you are seeing? What are the feelings you are feeling?
It's challenging to discuss all aspects of intuition in one blog post. Hopefully, this introduction will increase your awareness of intuition and you will start using it. My post at the end of the month will discuss exercises you can do to increase your awareness of your intuition and how you can use it in your every day life.
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
Happy Memorial Day! I am grateful for all who serve and for those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation today and every day. Find a few minutes to reflect and express your gratitude today.
This weekend is also the unofficial start to the summer season! I spent Friday and Saturday at the Bay (photo) spending a little quality time with a good friend. It was just what I needed to renew my spirit and begin the season with a smile in my heart! I grew up near the water and take every opportunity to spend time near the water - ocean, gulf, lake, bay, etc. - the water brings me peace.
In my last post, the topic was R is for Reinvention! I love to think about how I can reinvent, whether its myself, a favorite recipe, a room, etc. For me, reinvention is an exciting opportunity to take a step back and reflect then change and move forward. Not everyone looks at reinvention in a positive light. It can be scary for some and painful for others. Its scary and painful at times for me, too.
How do you take a step back and reflect? Meditation is a good way to quiet the mind and reflect on recent events. Listen for your intuition to guide you. Is there something or someone that is bothering you, a situation that is not quite right? Reflect upon that and see how your intuition guides you.
When I work with clients, we take a holistic approach and review significant events in their lives and review them through the lens of Pythagoras and the reinvention cycles. It's simply fascinating. The process helps us look back over our lifetime so that we can move forward with a greater understanding of ourselves.
I challenge you to take a few minutes to reflect about reinvention. We are in the midst of a Gemini Mercury Retrograde where all things 're' seem to be in focus: re-focus, re-new, re-flect, re-invent, you get the idea. So if there is an area of your life that isn't quite the way you want, spend a little time thinking about reinvention and take one small step in the direction your dreams.
Don't let anyone or anything dull your SPARKle.
Peace, love and sparks! Deb
Hi, my name is Debbie. I am a human being and I make mistakes. It's been that kind of month for me. All of 2015 has been an adventure as my personal year 5. A roller coaster ride of change.
We are all human and make mistakes. This is how we learn and grow and I am grateful for this human experience. As a Professional Intuitive Coach, when I realize I am ignoring my intuition, that feels like a HUGE mistake. A mistake I should not be making if I am teaching people to recognize and follow their intuition. A mistake that reminds me that I am human.
A bible verse comes to mind, Luke 4:23 "And he said to them, “Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, ‘Physician, heal yourself.’ What we have heard you did at Capernaum, do here in your hometown as well.”
Recently, I have heard the messages in my heart and but listened to the messages in my head which has lead me to make a few mistakes. In workshops, I conclude by saying "Follow your heart, but take your brain with you." It's always a balance, but lead with your heart. I need to attend one of my workshops. Physician, heal yourself.
So this month, it back to basics. Let's revisit meditation, the way to quiet our minds, open our hearts and receive intuitive guidance. And remind ourselves to pay attention to the signs, because they are always there guiding us.
I am grateful for mistakes. Imagine a life without growth or education opportunities. How boring.
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
As we continue with SPARK, we arrive at R which stands for Reinvention! Your SPARK is your purpose, your reason for living this life. Doesn't it make sense that as you learn lessons and evolve, you have the opportunity to reinvent?
Pythagoras, the father of our modern number system, defined each number and its vibration for us and he believed that we lived in 9 year cycles, experiencing the energy of each number during the cycle. I will be writing extensively on each 'personal year' during the second half of 2015. My simple visual for explaining the mechanics of personal years is this, imagine the numbers 1 to 9 in a single horizontal row:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
1 is the beginning, 9 is the end and 5 is in the middle. When you experience a personal year 1, its the beginning of the cycle and you are starting over, planting seeds, working alone. When you are halfway through the cycle in a personal year 5, its the energy of change. A time to evaluate your progress in this cycle and perhaps change course. Sometimes you choose to change course and sometimes the Universe changes it for you! At the end, in a personal year 9, you will experience the energy of endings, resolution, and the time to trust. (The remaining personal years play an important role in the cycle and as previously mentioned, I will explain them in the future. For now, simply understand that these cycles exist in your life.)
To calculate your current personal year, you simply add together the numbers in the month and day of your birth plus the current year. For me, that's December 30, so I add together 1+2+3+0+2+0+1+5 = 14 = 1+4 = 5. Yes, I am in a personal year 5, a year of change!
Back to reinvention. As you explore personal years and the cycles of your life, patterns are revealed and lessons learned. Part of discovering your SPARK is understanding where you have been, (the good, the bad and the ugly) and carrying the lesson forward. As we learn lessons and use our experience as fuel for our journey, we can reinvent ourselves and live our true purpose. I always feel hopeful when thinking about the cycles of our lives.
I believe one of the most rewarding exercises in my Discover Your Spark program is the analysis of personal year cycles in the client's birth path chart. There are usually one or two 'a-ha' moments as we chart the events in their life.
Each day we have a new opportunity to reinvent, embrace change, and live our purpose. It's nice to know that Pythagoras had our backs and defined the personal year cycles to enhance our experience and help us find our purpose.
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
It's A for Awareness month in the acronym SPARK! To refresh, as your intuition awakens, you have increased awareness and will pay attention to the signs and information around you.
Awareness is really a matter of paying attention to all of the information you are receiving. It is so easy to ignore or discount information that is right in front of you. As usual, I have story to share, because this happens to me like it happens you.
I have the privilege of great friends who trust me. I work up birth path information and look at reinventions cycle with them all the time. I have a new friend who trusted me with their birth information and for the first time I have a friend whose birth path is similar to mine. I say similar because I am a birth path 6 and they are a 6/33, having the master number 33 appear in their calculations.
It's interesting to watch the Laws of Reflection at work. Of course, I didn't recognize this at first. One of the challenges of a birth path 6 is the habit of putting the needs of others in front of their own. So imagine two people trying to do this for each other....it can be frustrating. As I said, I didn't recognize this at first and when I did, I was quick to acknowledge their kindness and say thank you! Gratitude always shifts the energy.
In Dick Sutphen's Book, Lighting the Light Within, he defines 20 universal laws, including the Law of Reflection:
"This Law says that the traits you respond to in others, you recognize in yourself, both positive and negative. It has four primary manifestations:
1.That which you admire in others, you recognize as existing within yourself;
2.That which you resist and react to strongly in others is sure to be found within yourself;
3.That which you resist and react to in others is something which you are afraid exists within you; and,
4.That which you resist in yourself, you will dislike in others."
It's an interesting concept to consider. I believe we learn and become more aware every day and this experience is another example of the Universe helping me grow by reflecting my behavior back to me.
So as we work on becoming more aware of the little things that are happening around us and to us, its really worth it to stop, reflect and most importantly pay attention. There could be a valuable lesson to learn, right in front of you.
As always, pay attention to the signs.
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
It's Rummage season! In April, I get to go to my happy place several times a week and prepare treasures for shoppers in early May. Rummage is so much more than volunteering my time. My Rummage sisters have become a second family for me and we rely upon and support each other during Rummage and throughout the year.
Several of us are going through challenging times and our team has come together to lift up one another and make this a great Rummage Sale. It's a privilege to volunteer time with such exceptional women, whom I can call my friends. Rummage fills my heart!
Find your volunteer experience, fill your heart and maybe find a new friend! Read on...
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
The letter A in SPARK stands for Awareness. As your intuition awakens, you have increased awareness and will pay attention to the signs and information around you.
Awaken, Awareness, Attention.
As we live life and get caught up in our daily routines, we lose sight of the little things and become a bit robotic: wake up, breakfast, work, lunch, work, dinner,relax, go to sleep. Rinse and repeat. It's no wonder we need to practice mindfulness, our days are so full of activity and distractions.
Luckily, the Universe is constantly sending us messages. When we work on discovering our purpose, we need to be open and aware to receive these messages and information.
Messages come in many forms. They can be on a billboard while driving to work. They can be in your Facebook feed as a photo or quote shared by a friend. They can be the people you 'coincidentally' run into at the store or gym or restaurant. The signs and messages are literally everywhere.
Has this happened to you? You research an idea on your computer, 'Google' a keyword and then keep going, researching more and more until hours have elapsed and you are now a page you never imagined but it answers your original question! This happens to me all the time. I may start looking for a class to attend at a specific school and end up buying a book on a related topic because that really answered my question. Along the way, a word or an ad caught my idea, generated a new idea and I kept going until I answered my question.
Curiosity? Yes. Coincidence? No. I believe the Universe shows us the information we need, just when we need it. The key is to pay attention and be aware in order to receive it.
The most common advice I give to clients is to 'pay attention'. We work on using their intuition, setting their intention and then paying attention. It's the law of attraction at work. Like attracts like. You need to be awake and aware to notice it.
Your path will rise to meet you. If you are aware of the signs and messages, you will soon discover if you are on your destined path or if a course correction is in order. It's all about awareness and of course, your intuition.
Pay attention and heighten your awareness. You will be glad you did.
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
I need to shake things up a bit with this post because it’s been a challenging couple of weeks. I will get back to my plan next post. Today, we focus on how attention and awareness are a part of the process to stay connected with our loved ones in spirit.
As I said, it’s been a rough couple of weeks, too much illness and death. It’s taken the wind out of my sail and left me questioning, why does this happen? People in the prime of their lives, with so much to give and accomplish, are taken from us too soon. It’s heart breaking.
So how can we lift our spirits and feel connected? Simply remember our loved ones in spirit are around us all the time. They are in good health and are cheering for us at each turn. They don’t want to see us sad or depressed, they want us to live a full life, enjoying every moment. At a recent memorial service, I was happy to hear the Deacon share stories of his loved one’s presence. Whether it was the way a napkin was folded, or specific saying or song. He knew it was his loved one giving him a gentle nudge and reminder that they were still there.
Paying attention is critical to noticing the signs. My maternal grandmother passed away 25 years ago and has been trying to get me to pay attention ever since. It’s only in the past couple of years that I have realized coins and rice pudding are her hallmarks. She was at the aforementioned memorial service for her sister-in-law in the form of candy orange slices. You may think that I am silly. But as I handed one to my mother I said, “Mom, Nanny is here today, she loved orange slices”. My Aunt walked up to me minutes later and said the same thing. We felt the love of my grandmother in that moment. Coincidence, I think not.
My grandmother was famous for her rice pudding. We all stood by her at the stove to learn the recipe and technique. Even after she passed, I would consult with my grandfather to make sure the recipe was just right. Now, in times of crisis (or when we need a hug from Nanny) rice pudding shows up. It was on my mother’s food tray in the emergency room. After a medical procedure, a waitress in a diner walked past us with beautiful servings of rice pudding. Rice pudding catches my eye in the grocery store when it’s on sale. Trust me, it’s my grandmother with a hug.
Do you find feathers or coins or see a specific bird frequently. Do you hear their favorite song? Smell their perfume? These are often signs of our loved ones. Two years ago, I was worried about an issue in our family. At the same time, a pair of cardinals (one male, one female) showed up everywhere I went. I mean everywhere. Around my house. At my parents’ house. Visiting family in Massachusetts. Visiting friends in Maryland. Everywhere. I literally yelled out the window “OK, you have my attention, who are you?” I questioned everyone about cardinals and it wasn’t until I mentioned it to my Aunt that she made me aware that my grandmother loved cardinals. Instantly, I realized it was my paternal grandmother and grandfather who were assuring me that they were watching over us and everything would be ok. The cardinals were present until our issue was resolved. They took care of us.
The last visit with my Aunt, she was wearing new pajamas that had cardinals all over them. She was proud of her new pajamas and repeatedly reminded me that Nanny Em loved cardinals and so did she. I knew in that moment, my grandmother’s arms were around her, comforting her. Earlier this week, my Aunt passed away. Her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, family and friends are all grieving. She was a special person. She gave me the courage to write this blog post, which I am doing with tears in my eyes. I will miss her. My silver lining is that I know she will be listening and watching over all of us in the days ahead.
Pay attention to the signs. That cardinal might be watching over you. I know it is watching over me.
Peace, Love and Sparks. Deb
It's almost Spring! I recently spent a long weekend in LA and soaked in the good weather and all the Hollywoood and LA excitement I could handle. I spent a beautiful Sunday afternoon at The Getty Center, a museum in Los Angeles where the wisteria was in full bloom (see pics).
It was fun to be in a new city with great weather. New adventures always pick me up and give me energy. I have a couple of adventures planned for the Summer and Fall. Have you planned your vacation adventures? Keep reading...
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
In this installment of Deb's Sparks, we will explore the second letter in SPARK - P is for Passion! SPARK is an acronym that I developed to remind us of the components of our purpose, and the P could have represented Passion or Purpose. I chose Passion.
What are you passionate about? Some people answer this question quickly and others hesitate. I encourage you to stop and think about this question, what are YOU passionate about? What comes to mind first? second? Find your journal and write these things down. Remember, this is your journey and its OK to discover your passion along the way.
How do you spend your free time? If you had no demands on your time, what would you do? Think about this for a few minutes and again, write these down in your journal. Typically, we spend our free time doing the things we enjoy.
What would you do if you didn't need to worry about money? Sometimes, we can get stuck in discovering our passion on the subject of earning an income. So, imagine you have the funds you need to live the life of your dreams. Now what? What is your career? How would you fill your time? What are your daily activities? Give this some serious thought. And again, get our your journal and write it down. Sketch out your ideal day.
We work on our Story so that we can understand ourselves better; understand the impact of events in our lives; discover our gifts then use this to move forward in our journey. We work to discover our Passion so that we can live our life with a fulfilling purpose. More tools and information to follow. Keep writing...
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
As we work our way through SPARK, we continue our focus on S for Story. In this post we will work on writing your story, or at least how to start writing your story. It is my belief that in understanding our story, we begin to understand ourselves and the impact (both positive and negative) of the events in our lives.
Before we get to the words, how will you document your story? Paper and pen? Pencil? Computer? Tablet? Audio? Video? Select the tool that is most comfortable for you. If you like writing in a journal, then pick out a new one for this project (I am always looking for inexpensive journals, try the discount stores and the clearance sections for some fun options!) If you are writing with a pen, pick a pen you like or a fun color. (I almost always write in purple ink! It makes me smile.) If you are writing on a computer or tablet, pick a font that you will want to read.
While the paper, the pen and the font may not be the most important decisions you will make about writing, its the little things that we enjoy and will encourage us to continue. And if you like to shop, like me, you can make this an adventure to treat yourself to a new journal or pen.
One logistical note, pay attention to your privacy. If you are sharing a computer, perhaps you want to password protect your document or if you are using a paper journal, keep it in a safe place. These are individual decisions.
So where will you begin? In my February 5th post, you were encouraged to write about your talents and gifts; your challenges; your facts. You can start your story with these or any event or point in time that you choose:
If you have worked with me in my coaching practice, you have documented the 'significant events' in your life by noting the date. You get to define significant but I always suggest making note of births, deaths, marriages, divorces, graduation, jobs, relationships, etc. You might want to do this as an entry in your journal and then you can select an event and write about it. I use this information with clients when we discuss reinvention cycles (R is for Reinvention, May 2015 stay tuned).
I can't stress this enough: it's your journal and your story, write true to your heart. In writing with your heart (and not your logical, ego driven head) your true essence will develop onto the page. And don't worry about sentence structure or paragraphs, just write. Write in sentences, bullets points or phrases, whatever works for you.
Make a ritual of writing. It's your story, so you can write every day, every week or once in a while. Find a comfortable place, take a few deep breaths, perhaps sit in meditation for a few minutes to clear your mind and open your heart, ask for guidance then pick up your pen (or pencil or keyboard) and start writing. Let it flow. No judgment, just writing and releasing. Writing your story is a journey not a destination. We grow and evolve every day.
As you fill your journal (paper or electronic) with the vignettes, events and observations that create your life and your story, reflect upon them. We will be visiting them and learning from them in the future. For now, go write!
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
Happy Anniversary to Wilber Consulting, LLC and Real Life Spark! It was three years ago on Valentine's Day that I officially formed my company and started planning. It's been an exciting three years.
I recently completed Human Design Level One certification and will incorporate Human Design into my practice. It will be another tool in my toolkit! Human Design is a relatively new system of personality analysis that combines the elements of Eastern and Western Astrology, the Chinese I'Ching, the Kabbalah (Tree of Life), the Hindu Chakra system and modern quantum physics! If you would like to learn more about Human Design, send me a note.
Have you been over to my blog? I started blogging in January and by February created a plan that I hope will provide inspiring information for your journey. For the first half of the year, I will be blogging about SPARK, an an acronym I created to remind us of the components of our purpose! Earlier this month we learned that S stands for Story! Later in the month, I will write about a tool to help you write your Story.
During the second half of the year, I will write about Reinvention Cycles and take you through my current 9 year cycle, starting with my Personal Year 1 in 2011. We will learn about Reinvention Cycles in May because R stands for Reinvention! I hope you stay tuned, read the blog and share it with your friends.
Peace, Love and Sparks! Deb
Debbie Moulton is the owner of Real Life Spark, a coaching practice dedicated to Igniting the Next Generation of YOU!™