Weekend Coffee Share…… All good things

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Yesterday I went to Target to pick up a few things for my daughter, and saw this cup that screamed my name. I love it when my everyday items reminds me about my dreams, and priorities. This cup does so in two ways; One, the good things in life aren’t material things (even though I appreciate all the money that keeps coming to me. Thank You. Thank You. Thank You.) Two, I definitely need more wild horses in my life.

The other night I was talking to one of my friends, who out of the blue claimed that surfing is better than sex. The statement took me by surprise, but I’m not a surfer. My mind started to go haywire, and the first thing I thought about was the adrenaline I experience the first time I go into the round pen with a wild horse. It’s an unearthly experience, every first time, with every new horse. First the horse is scared, and a scared horse is dangerous. Some horses are in a fight mood. Fight, and flight moods are equally dangerous, if you ask me. 1000lbs of uncontrolled, raw muscle power. The magic, the feeling of oneness, happens the instant the horse understands that you want to communicate with them. It often happens in the blink of an eye. That’s when the dance begins. The part I enjoy the most.

Naturally I’m talking about those unfortunate, former wild horses, that have lost their freedom. When they already lost their freedom it’s directly connected to their quality of life, that we can figure out a good system of communication with them. (Just like we humans learn new skills in different ways, so does horses.) I prefer seeing them running completely wild and free on the range, but when that isn’t an option anymore, the beauty of that new dance is enchanting. When they are wild and free, it’s one of my favorite things to watch them play, and photograph them, to be able to share their zest of life with anyone not fortunate enough to experience it first hand. The spirit of the wild horse can teach us so much about living in the present. For me, that is the most intense form of zen, of oneness, that I ever experienced.

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I’m sure you understand why I was thrilled to find this cup! What could be better than starting your day with a reminder of that thrill?

So how would you like your coffee today? How was your week? Is life coming back into normal now after the holidays?

I’d say that it’s been very busy since Christmas. I love having my daughter full time, and I’ve paused most of my regular activities, temporarily. I want to enjoy every second with her. Easing her into her new life, new routines, new friends, and on Monday a new school. My daughter is sweet, kind, and somewhat sensitive to changes. I’ve been focusing on making her feel that she’s at the right place, and surrounded by love. I’d say it’s going very well. 

What’s the weather like where you live? Do you have snow? We don’t have snow, but there was some flurries, softly singling down from the sky on New Years Eve. It is cold for Las Vegas. Early Thursday morning it was 29 degrees, coldest so far this season. As long as the strong sun is shining, it’s lovely, just perfect.

Do you have any fun plans for the weekend? I’m actually having lunch with one of my blogging friends today, Terri from Second Wind Leisure Perspectives. Terri is from Sacramento (CA,) but currently on a road trip with her husband. I’m so excited about our lunch today! Funny that we’re having lunch in Las Vegas, we never did when we lived a couple hours from each other (in California.) LOL

I need to get out of town at some point this weekend, to recharge for next week. I also have a new pair of hiking boots to break in. Very important business. I have a hike, not super far away, that I’m very curious about. We’ll see.

I’ve ordered a new bed from IKEA for my daughter. It’s a loft bed, and It’s supposed to be delivered today. I’m guessing that I will spend a fair amount of time putting it together tomorrow. I imagine making a magical forte under the loft, with some beautiful textiles, a chair, a desk, and some of my daughter’s personal things. The theme will be unicorns…she’s totally into unicorns.

Did you make any New Years Resolutions? I wrote about mine in my last post prior to this one. My workout routine have changed slightly since I moved to the city, and have less space for my everyday exercise, and no horses to ride. You know I miss my horses terribly, but I do my best to embrace the change.

The difference between those who succeed and those who fail isn’t what they have-it’s what they choose to see and do with their resources and their experiences of life.
– Anthony Robbins

I’m lifting more weights now, since I moved to the city, and I do feel stronger. I know without stepping on a scale, something I haven’t done in years..that I have gained weight, muscle weight. I feel that my body is changing. I like feeling strong and I’m definitely keeping that part up. I do need to add more cardio. Something new. Walking in the closest city park is getting boring. I’m looking into different alternatives. Are you planning on trying some new type of exercise this year?

I hope that your weekend is getting off to an amazing start! Feel free to grab a refill on that coffee on your way out!

Love,

Ms Zen

Cheers to 2019 – the best year of our lives!

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I can’t believe it’s the last day of 2018 already! It’s been a totally unpredictable year. Not at all as I imagined when it started.

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I started out purchasing a future Tevis Horse, that wasn’t even halter broke. I worked with him thousands of hours, literally.

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I had the biggest garden I’ve had so far. I should say the biggest that I designed, planted, and managed by myself. In the process I made it a priority to learn more about propagating fruit trees, that was incredibly rewarding, and something I’m definitely doing more of in the future.

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Then there was this crazy Carr Fire, raging close to the house I lived in. Living with my bags packed the whole summer, and constantly updating myself of the best escape routes was stressful. Somewhere around July it started to become a challenge to live a zen filled life.

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It was about this time my daughter visited her father, and his new family, and expressed a wish to spend more time with them. Which lead me to move to Las Vegas. Since her father lives in the area.

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I am doing my very best to find the right balance in the city. The first two months I barely slept at all, not being used to the noise of the city, and I worked way to much. I have a better balance now, and make sure that I get out in nature every week. I am the glass is always half full kind of girl, when I’m not happy with something, I believe it’s my responsibility to change that. The close proximity to amazing nature helps me handle the fact that I’m constantly surrounded by the buzz of the city. I don’t know where my garden is going to be this spring, or how big it’s going to be. I don’t have a horse right now, and I’m definitely going to have to do something about that….when the time is right.

It’s been an intense year, in some ways. I would say that I am proud over myself for overcoming the challenges I faced, while staying happy. Because as I am ending this year I am immensely happy. Happy and hopeful, feeling that 2019 is going to be the best year ever.

Do you make new years resolutions? Do you keep them? For how long do you keep them?

I like to have written goals to work towards. Challenging, but realistic. I’m going to keep my resolutions simple. They are not new resolutions, I just fine tuned the ones that I found most important to me. Here we go;

Exercise 5 times/week.

Eat healthy (lots of organic fruit and vegetables.

Start growing my own food again.

Explore at least 3 brand new hiking trails/month.

Improve my photography, make time for it every day.

Write a minimum of two blog post/week.

Be the best mom I can be to my amazing daughter, whatever that means.

 

I have more goals, and wishes for the new year, but they are more difficult to put down on paper. I’d love to here about your resolutions, if you have any. Or your expectations, and dreams for the new year.

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I took the photos in this post yesterday, at Exploration Peak Park, here in Las Vegas (NV.) With exception of the first photo of me, that photo is from a Christmas lunch last week.

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With this I’ll leave you to your New Years celebrations. Cheers to 2019, the best year of our lives!

Love,

Ms Zen

 

 

 

Ready, Set, Go – The Art Of Packing Light

So today it’s Wednesday, and I’ve started to count the days until I leave. It’s five days. (If you’re a new friend, I’m moving from northern California, to Las Vegas. I sold most of my bigger items, and my horses. I still have a truck I’m planning to sell, but I can’t sell it until I bought a car..five days..)

I packed, and re-packed my things. I asked myself questions about everything I packed. Why did I pack this? Do I need it? Want it? Is it a sentimental item? Does it help me focus on my dreams and goals? How soon will I use (……)? Is it easy to replace? I also use these questions every spring, and every fall, to stop myself from collecting things that I don’t use. Which definitely helped to make things easier now. I enjoy living a life free from clutter (in every aspect.)

I have a couple items that helps me focus on my dreams. Things that aren’t really necessary. Like a small framed picture of my first horse. I held it in my hand today, again. I reevaluate that photo every time I move. So far it has stayed with me. Even though it may not seem very special to a guest visiting my house. Yes, I took the picture, but the quality of the photo isn’t the best. The balance in the photo is perfect, but the resolution poor. Unless my guest know that I saved ten years to be able to buy that horse, they are probably not even noticing the photo. Or, if they do see it, they probably wonder why on earth I saved that photo.

That photo reminds me that I can get anything I want, if I’m willing to work hard enough. It helped me many times already, and keeps helping me. How could I not bring it with me?

I also use the photo, and the story, to encourage children I tutor, to go after what they want. When showing a child a physical item, like a framed photo, it’s easier for them to believe,  that no dream is too big, even if it seems slightly out of reach for the moment. I often let the children hold the photo in their own hands, while I’m telling them the story. I paint it with details about this very special horse. I tell them about that time when we got chased by a big bull elk, when the horse wasn’t broke to ride yet, and that other time when a bunch of wild pigs chased us. By coincidence (?) the horse’s name was Draumur, Icelandic for dream .

My mom was a single mom, and we were relatively poor (we only had hand-me-down used clothes etc.) We did not have money for me to take riding lessons, and having a horse of my own did not exist in the same universe that I lived in then. Still I knew that I was going to have a horse of my own. I kept that dream alive. I envisioned it. I manifested it every day. It was the first thing on my mind when I woke up, and the last before I went to bed, every night. On my free time I worked hard, without pay, in all the stables within biking distance. To learn more about horses. I also read all the books there was about horses, in the three libraries closest to my home. I did this for ten years. I think of myself as a minimalist, to some degree. Things doesn’t define me. I choose to travel light, and live with a light heart. I do choose to keep a few things, like that frame, and some books that motivates me. I wouldn’t cry if I lost them, but seeing them motivates me, and makes me stronger.

I decided to leave half of the books I had packed, making my already light load, lighter. Books are important, but I decided that I could do without some of them. I also decided to give two large, framed, canvas photos, of wild horses as a gift to a friend, instead of bringing them. I decided to keep my snowboard jacket and pants, even if they take up some space. I invested in quality (I bought them in December last year,) and those are good clothes that will keep me warm, and dry for many winters. The snowboard itself, I’m not so sure. A snowboard takes up space, and I really would like to have one that is a little longer anyways. My snowboard clothes can be used in various settings (snowshoeing, cross country skiing, downhill skiing, ice skating, or on a winter vacation,) since they aren’t extreme in any way. They will be useful. Unless I decide to make a bookshelf out of the snowboard. I did that in an apartment I had as a teenager. I used two snowboards that had seen lots of fun, and been replaced by newer boards. Just seeing those bookshelves made me happy. (I love snowboarding!) I almost forgot about that. I might just bring the snowboard..  (Writing really helps to get things straight in my head.)

I downsized the tools in my toolbox, leaving some I rarely use behind. I still haven’t decided wether I should bring my fencing tools…you never know when those will come in handy. I mean, I do know, but how important is it to bring them now? I also unpacked some portable solar showers, that I bring for off-grid camping sometimes…lol. I don’t know why on earth I packed these things in the beginning. The survivalist in me still think that those things are essential for a good life. I think it might of been to remind me that I can still do things like going camping in the middle of nowhere, even if I live in a big city? Maybe to feel the country connection? (Naturally I’m not unpacking my collection of rare heirloom seeds for my future homestead..those will be useful when that day comes, and they’re so tiny. I’ll always make room for those. )

Still, everything I packed from the beginning would easily fit in the trunk of a midsize car, so it wasn’t a crazy amount of stuff. I am good a packing, and now it’s even less. I took care of the horses at work this morning. That is always enjoyable, and I will miss that job immensely. All the horses there are my friends. Going there in the morning and grooming each horse thoroughly doesn’t feel like a job. I will miss the lady I work for as well. I don’t see her every day, but our conversations are always great, when I do see her. 

Besides my morning job, I had two things on my schedule today. The first was to watch a little boy, that I have been watching from time to time. I prepared healthy snacks, and fun games for him, when I was done with my morning job. However his mom didn’t feel good, so he got lucky and got some extra mommy time.  The second thing I was going to do was to test drive a new (used) car. The current owner got caught up in work, and rescheduled to tomorrow. All of a sudden I had several hours. I harvested veggies in my garden; yellow squash, cucumber, tomatoes, and figs. I also played with my dog, groomed her (twice,) and even clipped her nails. I then started to read Dale Carnegie’s How to win friends and influence people, for the 11th time! The bible is the only book I’ve read more times. Neither of those are books you can read in one sitting, or learn everything from by just reading them once. Do you have a book/books that you’ve read several times? If so, tell me about them! 

Can you tell that I’m ready to go? When I make a decision, I do everything in my power for it to succeed, and happen quickly. In most cases I’m a patient person, a very patient person, but I don’t feel patient right now. I like being busy, in the face of a big change. To work actively towards making things awesome. It’s kind of itching in me to be able to give my new job, and place to live my very best. I’m not sure if I told you what job I decided to say yes to? Did I? I’m going to take care of two little boys. I’m very excited about meeting them. I’ve talked to their mom, and I’ve seen several photos of them. They looks so happy, and full of life! It’s going to be a lot of fun!  Gretchen (my dog,) is going to to love it as well 🙂 She is very good at taking care of little kids. It just felt right. I put an ad up online, with my education, and a short job resume. I literally got more than 100 job offers. I was planning on going to Vegas, and go to interviews for a couple weeks, and then decide. In the end I choose to follow my intuition. I instantly felt for this family. (They also live less than an hour from my daughter’s father.) I love all children, but the youngest ones have a special place in my heart. I just love being there with them, when they discover new truths for the first time. 

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I kind of feel like dragging out my Halloween costume from last year, and use it to fly into next week. LOL.

I hope you’re having an awesome day 🙂

Love,

Ms Zen