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Oh! The Places You Would Go!

Change is inevitable.  It is going to happen over and over again every single day of your life.

You can make yourself crazy resisting change but that would be like riding your brake as you drive down the road.   Life is pushing you forward yet you’re applying the brakes for no reason other than just a lack of trust or faith.

Faith and trust are what protect us from fear.  Without these things… without faith we would be paralyzed by our fears.   Its faith in our legs to hold us up that gives us the confidence to stand.  It’s the faith in knowing we will receive a paycheck that allows us to get up and go to work.   We know these things are going to take place.   We have faith and therefore, they happen.

IF only we could have this same level of faith and trust in all aspects of our life.  As Dr. Suess say’s  “Oh, the Places you will go!”

Looking back on changes in my life . . . major changes . . . those that presented the most fear. Reflecting on those changes or decisions that caused me the most stress, the most fear– those were the changes that affected the most growth. And such an incredible reminder!

What is the last thing you did that truly frightened you? How did you grow from it? And what is holding you back now? What fear has you paralyzed? Maybe it’s time to act upon it and shed that fear and allow yourself to fly. Remember how good it felt last time?

Have faith in yourself.

Tis the Season!

The holiday season can be a very tough time for so many people.  As the old adage says “You never know the battles another is fighting.  Be Kind.  Always.”

As we hustle and bustle about searching for the ideal gift or the perfect “ugly” sweater for the weekends’ festivities, somebody somewhere is struggling.  They’re wishing the holidays away because of the pain it causes them.   Perhaps they’ve lost a job and can’t afford to celebrate the way their heart desires.  Maybe they’re apart from family and will be alone for the holidays.  Or this year, they’re facing their first Christmas without their loved one(s).

Spreading Christmas joy and breathing a little magic back into season isn’t difficult and it doesn’t have to cost a dime.  It merely requires a little attention, consideration and time . . . perhaps even just a moment.

As an adult, it has become more and more apparent that the true meaning of Christmas is truly about feeling!  My kids have heard me say it again and again.  To me the holidays are about bringing people into your home, inviting them to join you at your table.  I don’t limit the number of guests to my table based on how many seats I have . . . . If I don’t have enough room at my table, I’ll find a bigger table!

I was scrolling through the Facebook newsfeed this morning and stumbled across an article which brought me to absolute tears.  Not just the single random tear that escapes at the blink of the eye.  All out sobbing and choking to speak kind of tears.   The article was a report of the “Snowball Express” which is a program of the Gary Sinise Foundation which just flew 1,000 families to DisneyWorld for the holidays.   These families are the children and spouses of fallen U.S. Soldiers who either died in the line of duty, passed away from disease or even committed suicide.

In a time when they are facing unimaginable loss and pain, Gary and his foundation took the time to breathe some magic back into their lives.  You can read the story here: https://tinyurl.com/y9gj6auy

Take a moment this holiday season . . . take a moment on ANY given day and spread some love.   Breathe a little magic into somebody else’s life.   You just never know how that simple random act of kindness will impact somebody else’s life.

“The best way to spread Christmas Cheer, is singing loud for all to hear.”

Time to Turn Over a New Leaf

They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions.  If that’s the truth then my road must be a multi-lane freeway!!   I always have such great intentions to dedicate time to writing and all these ideas and thoughts just get jumbled up in my head with NOWHERE to go!

Just as I’ve realized and learned with so many other things in life, if you want something, you must go after it and go after it with all you’ve got.

So, here we go!   I’m going to set this keyboard on-fire.  Be prepared to find some new ideas and pieces as well as old ones.   All those sheets of paper, tucked neatly away in folders in my desk and my nightstand, are going to come to life here in my blog.   What you can expect is just a purging of thoughts, ideas, reflections and realizations and even a few opinions that rattle around inside this busy head of mine.  I hope you find them inspiring, informative, insightful and even amusing.

As my bio states, “Words inspire me, comfort me, explain me and energize me. I feel that the lyrics/words are an opportunity to bring many people with similar feelings or experiences together instantly!”

Enjoy!

Have You Forgotten?

September 11th.

For me, it is a day of deep reflection.  Never before or since September 11th, 2001 have I ever experienced the same level of intense feelings which I felt that day.  Fear, sadness, empathy, despair, anger, frustration, complete trepidation.  I feared for our nation as a whole and for the survivors and rescuers immersed in the thick of the chaos and destruction.  My heart ached for those who witnessed the devastation first hand, those who feared for the safety of their loved ones and neighbors.  I was angry beyond words and truth be told, today I still am. 

The days that followed my heart swelled with pride at the fearless bravado of our first responders, for our administration and military for their courage, pure human emotion and their quick response, and for the people of the United States who, for the first time I could recall, came together “undivided, with liberty and justice for all” in their minds and hearts.

I remember how deeply proud I felt to be an American.   

Here we are 15 years later.   Fifteen years is a long time.   5,479 days. 

Today, I’m still proud to be an American. Although I’m not so proud of America or some of my fellow Americans.   Too many people have forgotten.   Too many have become divided.  This sadness breeds fear in my heart again.  Fear of another heinous attack.  Fear we have allowed our guard to drop in order to not hurt the feelings of foreigners and non-American citizens.  Of those who may wish us harm again.  I honestly pray we NEVER have to endure another day like September 11th. 

If you’ve forgotten, I suggest you take a moment to reflect.  Remember where you were when you hear the news about the attacks.  Remember the shock and horror you felt when you watched the footage.  Remember how your heart ached for those who were lost, for their families and for the brave souls who tirelessly risked their lives to find the survivors.  Remember how we came together as a country to show our solidarity to our evil enemies. And then, don’t ever forget.

God Bless America

I have not forgotten.

never-forget-911

Forgive Yourself

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Sometimes in life we get a little side-tracked.  Distracted.  Off-course.  We get consumed by activities and obligations or sucked in to other people’s drama or we slide down the rabbit-hole.   Whatever it is, it happens to us all at some point and there’s no point in beating yourself up over any of it.  Regret is simply more wasted time and valuable energy.  The important thing is to get back on track no matter how you go about it.

I, myself, had gotten off-track recently.   Ok, not just off-track, seriously derailed.  I found myself completely stalled in the train yard unsure of which way to go.  This was not my normal moda operandi . . .at all.

I was the girl who admitted my fears and then chased after them to dispel them from my life.  Fear is simply a thief, stealing life from before our very eyes.  Yet I had allowed it to creep in and do exactly that . . . steal my life.  Stall me.  Fear had left me dead in my tracks and too numb to realize what was happening.  Yet crazy enough, I don’t regret the experience for everything we experience in life is an opportunity for growth and man, did i grow!!!  Leaps and bounds.

I look back on this period of time in my life and instead of feeling sad or disappointed in myself, I cut myself some slack.  The lessons which are most important oftentimes take the longest to learn.  And through the trials and tribulations of late, I have learned that I am far stronger than I give myself credit for and also that intuition is an incredibly accurate measure of the energy around us.   If something makes you pause and scratch your head and question your path, listen to that voice.  Always.  It’s usually correct.

I feel what has emerged in me from all of these recent struggles far outweighs the pain and the difficulties I faced through it all.   Highs.  Lows.  Bouncing like a ping pong ball between the two.  Many days where I felt like this volley was taking place in a room devoid of all light . . . .complete darkness.  So you can only imagine the elation I feel now with the lights on and the sun shining down on me!  As though the universe has illuminated me with a spotlight and the energy pulsating through me from this light is electric.  To coin a little Alicia Keys . . . this girl is on fire!

So stand back world lest you might just get burned.

 

 

Should I stay or should I go?

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If you are looking for a challenging yet serene hike without traveling far from the heart of Palm Desert, the Hop-a-Long Cassidy trail, at the south end is your best bet.  It is a peaceful stretch with grueling switchbacks and daunting ledges which lies between the Art Smith trail and the infamous Cross trail (near Stone Eagle Golf course).  This trail is, by no means, for the faint of heart and it absolutely warrants you bringing plenty of water especially on warmer days.  Far too many rescues have taken place on ill-prepared travelers of this trail.  Every time I hike this, I shake my head in disbelief to recall the few times I traversed this beast on my mountain bike.   i’ll equate it to either being horribly foolish or dangerously self-confident!   This is one I never have to ride again.

My most recent solo hike (not recommended, by the way) had me questioning my own sanity.  After traveling up and over the first few sets of switchbacks and along the steep, narrow ledges, I began dropping into the canyon paving the way to the final set of killer switchbacks.  I spotted a herd of bighorn sheep ahead and I stopped to watch them for a few minutes.   They had positioned themselves across the trail I needed to travel.  I began to consider turning back and returning via the Art Smith trail where I had begun.  i waited a bit longer and decided making noise may scare them off and send them scattering.  Nope.  My noise only made them curious.  They were now staring up at me.   I picked up some large rocks and launched them, sending them skipping down the mountain, close enough to hopefully scare them but far enough not to threaten their safety.  No luck.  They continued to stare.

I scratched my head.  It was a fairly warm day and I knew turning back would be just as grueling as traversing the switchbacks and heading out.  I made several more attempts to scare the sheep off of the trail but they weren’t having any part of it.  So I did what any rational hiker would do and began moving toward the herd.   Now mind you, if they were to charge, I would have no where to go and there’s not a chance ANYBODY would be able to hear my screams for help.  I was too deep into this.  As I got to the turn in the trail, I made an about-face and turned back toward my starting point.   This was going to have to wait for another time.    Just then I heard a rumbling.  Something had spooked the sheep and they scattered from the trail.   I watched with a steady eye as they made there way up the steep canyon wall and then I made my move and began jogging down the trail and across he stretch they had previously occupied.  I didn’t stop running until I reached the sandy wash and knew I was a good distance from the sheep.

And, by the way, YES!  I am afraid of bighorn sheep as I have been chased by a ram on more than one occassion. . . .and I have witnesses.   But that’s a story for another time.

For more information on the Hop-a-long trail and for safe hiking tips in the desert, click for the links.   Be safe and be smart!

 

This Magical Desert

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Take a quick look at my instagram or my facebook page and there is NO question that I LOVE this desert and all the adventure and exploring it has to offer.

I often think back to the days when I had first moved here to the Palm Springs area from my lifelong hometown near Detroit, Michigan.  We had just survived another humid summer dodging mosquitos the size of hummingbirds and watching the rainstorms all weekend long give way to bright and sunny Monday mornings.  You could almost count on it every week.   But here I was, driving down Highway 111 staring up with the sun in my eyes at these mountains wondering how long it would take somebody to walk to the top of each ridge.  I remember thinking how I couldn’t wait to meet somebody who might be willing to get up there with me and show me the way.

In all honesty, I still look up at the mountains with that same yearning.   At almost any given time, I’d prefer to be making my way up the mountain simply to enjoy the peacefulness and the view.   I just feel as though I truly come alive on the trails.

Over the next several weeks my plan is to share some of my adventures with you.  Funny, and sometimes frightening, stories from the trails along with some of my favorite views.  Check back soon.  I’ll be back with some good dirt. 😉