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Posts Tagged ‘West End’

It’s another gorgeous day in Jamaica. Things are looking up. For now, my computer is tolerating my digits punching the keys. It’s hard to say how long this will be the case. It’s pretty hard to type with your fingers crossed. My computer fritzing out effects my dailies greatly but is nanoscopic in the wake of the recent tragedy in Japan.

I haven’t had the words to even touch on the magnitude of damage following the recent earthquake/s and Tsunami. Today I am sending blue skies to the survivors. Blues skies, grace and healing.

I traveled to Japan as a three year old. I have never forgotten the kindness, grace and beauty I experienced in Japanese culture as a child. My few weeks there had a life long impact on my view of the world and folks in it.

More life and love for Japan today. May Japan be embraced by the powers of loving and positive intention.  May we hold a vessel for the hurt as well as the hope. May we hold an open heart, and open hands for the dreams. May we recognize and celebrate the arrival of the dreamers. We feel our brothers and sisters anguish from across the waters. May hope ignite your hearts when the storm has cleared.

I snapped this blue sky image while driving up our little lane the other day. I find it remarkably refreshing and simple. Keeping it on the positive isn’t always easy, especially when so much of the world is suffering. Perhaps, if we all meditate blue skies and the calm they offer, the state of current affairs will improve. It’s definitely worth a try. I can’t imagine that meditating blue skies and healing could make the situation worse.

One Love, walk good, keep your head to the sky…

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From the top of my heart and the core of my being I wish you an ilaful day…

If you are not familiar with this word, ilaful, you can learn more about it here.

If you do know this word please comment and share with me what it means to you. I would love to know.

One Love, walk good, know that you are blessed 

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We had dinner with friends the other night. Half way through the evening a young world traveler appeared, which is not uncommon in this part of the world. Tourists often find their way into our homes, hearts and gatherings. He was clearly under the influence of Jamaica’s sensational vibe and a more than a few sweaty bottles of Red Stripe. Which, if you’re wondering, is also not uncommon in this part of the world.

We got to talking about where we came from, what we do, etcetera. World Traveler shared that his father was the Dean or Vice principal (or some position of authority) at his high school (also our host’s alma mater). The conversation turned to home schooling because home school is a trip!  Almost immediately, the world traveler delved into a long list of amazing people who were home schooled. Inspiring and impressive indeed.  I was hooked, kings, presidents, executives, actors, pilots, inventors, scientists, artists, and the list went on…

And then came the unfortunate and inevitable, dreaded, esteem crushing comment.

“Jeez, Home schooling’s a handful, I can’t imagine”, etc…

Hmmmmm. Once again, I was invited to look at homeschooling in a different light. Granted, working at home with a three and a five year old is an obvious handful. But for some reason, around here anyway, home schooling is kinda refreshing. I view it as yet another creative aspect and outlet. Although, it isn’t always a piece of cake to convince my babes to participate. I do find that the more excited I am, the more they look forward to their lessons.

Children learn differently. One of the greatest gifts of being home with my two beans is discovering the unique (and very different ways) in which they learn. It gives me an edge in reaching, teaching and preparing them for the world. It has become very clear that our children (arguably all children) are artists to an infinite degree. I am continually impressed with the progressive and prolific nature of Iz’ and Mils’ artistic abilities and works. Iz is currently exploring realism and recently, his sister, has catapulted cubism to a new level!

I am so contented when I witness my children gravitate towards learning about things that interest them. This is particularly gratifying when they are not doing “school time”. Last night Izra was “catching out” (checking out) his alphabet chart when he decided to work on some writing and drawing. The photo above features the picture he gifted me when he was “all finished”. I love that he is learning and schooling on his own.

Perhaps the greatest thing we can gift the younger generation is a strong and insatiable desire to learn.

“I love to learn Mommy. It’s just what I love to do”….~Izra, 5

One Love, walk good, loving learning and the discovery of genius unfolding.

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This time of year always finds me feeling a little glum. Two days after my birthday, the end of celebration has finally arrived. Even here, in Jamaica it is a grey day on the hill. Believe it or not, it’s too cold to swim at the beach. Especially if you are older than five. I haven’t completely lost hope. But this is indeed the “let down”phase. All of the preparations and expectations for the holidays and a year of life and wisdom gained, have been opened, celebrated and neatly packed away.

Hmmmmmmm, I wonder, what now?

I’m feeling blu but keeping it on the positive. Today (rathar than smell the coffee and face the year ahead), I am reflecting on this last year. I started 2010 with a Mondo Beyondo list of things I dreamed of achieving. In all reality, I accomplished and was gifted more items on my list than I could have imagined. In fact, until I pulled the list out the other day and re-read the scribbled text, I was unaware and surprised by how much of the list had manifested. Just goes to show, when you put it out there in the universe the atmosphere and your subconscious work in your favor.

What pulls you through the grey and dreary days of winter? You may not be as fortunate as I am to have your eyes assaulted by bold, saturated, color. Year round, no less. I am sure there is something that perks you up. For me, today it’s realizing that I can be young for the rest of my life if I can: open my eyes and heart to see light and beauty, embrace all that I receive with gratitude and love, continue to create and inspire folks, be inspired by the smallest of things, recognize that blessings and curses can be benevolent, know the universe is working in my favor especially when I am too grumpy, tired or stubborn to see it.

How ’bout you?

One Love, walk good, embracing color & waiting out winter…

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Today it’s just love.

For those of you not familliar with COJOChildren of Jamaica Outreach, they are doing some awesome work here in Jamaica. COJO is a New York based non-profit and Saturday, December 4, was the Annual COJO Scholarship Gala. Proceeds from the event benefit the service organizations catering to the needs of less fortunate children. The 16th annual gala was hosted in New York and will provide scholarships for youth in Jamaica. I had the good fortune to meet an active member of the organization on a plane from NY to Montego Bay. Hearing about COJO’s work I wanted to be involved. I am grateful to have gifted COJO with ila blu adornment to utilize in the gala auction or raffle.

You may wonder how the photo featured above is relevant to this post. It is a quick shadow shot of me and my husband. For me, this shot represents so many aspects of our union. We are two, yet one. I feel this way about the world, universe etc… We are many, and still we are one.

It is amazing what we can do to forward each other and the youth when we put our hearts, hands and heads together.

Is there a better season to give? Surrender to the oneness it feels so right.

Oh and don’t forget to look out for the “give away post” to receive a $100 gift certificate and custom adornment session! To learn more about how to participate click here:. The best of luck to each and every one of you.

One Love, walk good, what are you giving???

 

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Patience is a virtue. That’s what they say. Agreed already. How much patience does one really need. When do you know you’ve arrived, proved yourself to be a patient individual? Are you working on it, patiently? Because I definitely am!

When all else fails. Love prevails. This is the good news for today.

This stunning shot was taken by our amazingly talented, photographer friend, Misha Earle of Misha Earle Photography. This year, on our anniversary, I surprised my husband with a beach (i.e., seven miles of white sand), a sunset and a photography shoot. It was exciting to honor our love and marriage in this way and to celebrate on the same stretch of sand where we were married. The private residence/guesthouse has been revamped since our special day four years ago. It is more gorgeous now than it was then, and apparently, at least in this photo, so are we.

It was absolutely fantastic to be oohed and awed over, primped, pampered and photographed. We felt incredibly special. We celebrated the shoot with cocktails and friends before heading off for dinner and a cliffside concert. We were Super Stars!

This is cheering me up today as I wait and wait and continue to wait on some important paperwork and bureaucratic information to come through. More on this later as my patience is waning. True Love Prevails. Love is growing…

A special thanks to Misha for her talent and time. We had the time of our lives!

One love, practicing patience…

 

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I am sending a meditation of calm and peace to tropical storm/hurricane Tomas.

Tomas, thank you for visiting. You don’t have to go home but you can’t come or stay here! Please proceed to your place of origin in a calm and mannerly fashion. Take nothing more with you and do your best not to disturb the island inhabitants. I know this was your one chance at success. Tomas, I realize it’s not easy to surrender when you have waited lifetimes for the opportunity to shine. You can still save face.

Love, peace and the general populace are more important than your personal agenda and achievements. Tomas, please leggo your stronghold and carry the water and wind with you. Do not rain on Haiti. Quickly move out of the way so that the sun and breeze can start to dry up the mud and disease, that are ravaging those displaced by earthquake, landslides, and floods.

Now, I’ve been warned that “you just can’t reason with a hurricane”.

What do ya say we prove ’em wrong?

Tomas, if you can do only one thing, do good.

Go home and have some tea. Imagine. You will be a hero.

There is no shame in sparing folks the agony of your destruction…

♥ One Love, walk good, should we bunker down???


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So grateful to be back on line. We have experienced unprecedented amounts of rain this last week. Only now are we drying out, recovering and able to glimpse our healing Jamaican sunshine. Wow! I have no ceiling in my studio. It collapsed during the storm. Chances are we could have stopped some of the damage and saved the pets had we been home. But we were enjoying, or actually weathering, a long weekend on the North Coast. We were stranded for almost a week…

Bridges have washed away. Roads have washed away. Houses have washed away. People have died. Pets were lost. Two of our three guinea pigs didn’t make it, sniff, sniff. 😦  The roads are so bad that by the time we arrived in the west on Thursday we were locked out of our neighborhood by huge bodies of water at all three entrance points. Four feet and a few inches of water.

A line of cars parked at the base of the growing lake, unsure as to their fate should they brave the wet. This was our last and only potential to reach home. We clenched our teeth and cheered our twenty plus year old Toyota on as she swam through the pool sized puddle that gathered at the foot of Orange hill. She filled up with water and I had to hold my computer bag up, up, up to keep it dry. Later on, my husband confessed his fear. He thought for sure she would sink and that we would have to grab our stuff and the children and wade through the chest high water. But she made it! Ever faithful and enduring. Wouldn’t trade that car for anything, well maybe for a truck… A very tall one.

We arrived at the house in the pouring rain only to discover that it was raining inside too. Hours of wiping turned into a meditation. And somehow, we transformed our distress into gratitude. We were able to have dinner at our small family table. We were warm and dry. We still had electricity. Big smile.

Now it is time for sunshine. Lots of it! Drying out the car, the house, the land, the laundry, etc… Soon we will fix the roof. Our land is nearly impossible to get to but the water levels are slowly lowering. I hope that this bright sunshine stretches over the island and shows it’s face in Haiti too (where there is also lots of suffering/floods). We never had a clue that a small “weather disturbance” could have such an impact here on the rock!

On a more positive note, I wanted to share a little piece of blu sky with you.

This is Celestrina blu, a custom shield necklace I made for a client last month! injoy!

Celestrinablu

Collection Custom Artifact: August 2010
Family Shield Necklace
Type One of a Kind
Mood joyful
Elements Sterling Silver, Apatite, Swarovski Pearl, Turquoise, misc. Vintage & Contemporary Glass
Prowess Clarity, Communication, Spirituality, Strength, Transformation, Peace

One Love, walk good, loving the sunshine…

P.S. Stay tuned for the ila blu adornment give away!!!

Only slightly delayed by the weather. 🙂

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Geuss What? Dreams really do come true!

About five years ago our little family embarked on an extended exploration. It turns out the journey was even longer than we thought. And, as is often the case, the journey itself  grew more significant than the destination. Beauty is often revealed in baby steps. Little did we know…

Three years ago right now, we ended our long search for a piece of land here in west Jamaica. Exhausted and pregnant with our youngest, I’d finally decided to surrender the quest. After lengthy negotiations for ten acres we were in love with went awry, our offer was rejected. It became apparent that letting go and letting love was the only option. Perhaps, we weren’t supposed to buy at that time or in that area, etc. With some heavy convincing, my husband conceded and we essentially gave up.

Would you believe that a week later we went mango hunting, and re-discovered a seemingly “unclaimed” mango tree. We knew the tree from a previous visit to “land for sale” near by. My husband climbed it and began to chuck mangos to me. Eventually we were approached by a local resident. He was concerned we were stealing his goats, as they gathered to participate in the feasting. Apparently, someone with a station wagon much like ours, had recently packed a dozen or so goats into the back and driven off into the horizon (to a tune of thousands of Jamaican Dollars).

Turns out, the goat man’s brother was selling an incredibly bio-diverse piece of land just down the road. We talked for a long time. The rain came. And goat man took us to meet his brother. We quickly befriended the brother, who ironically is the splitting image of my husband’s father. Thus began the serendipitous exchange that led us to purchase our little piece of the rock. It has been a blessed adventure.

A labor of love indeed. I give thanks for my husband and the time, energy and work he has put into our little corner of Jamaica. Not long ago, he finally secured the perimeter of our land from goats. Trust mi, a nearly impossible endeavor. Unfortunately, we learned, the hard way, many times, that our fence did not protect our seedlings from nibbling, sure-footed, hardy, animals. Their feasts were our loss and I truly grieved when they devoured our first fully grown Papaya (known as paw paw in Ja).

Nonetheless, our devoted Daddy King stayed on the case and we now boast a growing array of striving fruit trees and flowers.

Today, I share with you our “real” first papaya, from a tree grown from seed. What a splendid event, to pick our first fruit and slice it lovingly to reveal it’s beautiful belly. Half to put in our mouths straight away and the other half to put into our ritual green smoothie. I thought you’d like to have a look. And to know that dreams really do come true. Even on the Rock!

One love, walk good, looking for beauty in baby steps…

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Emancipation Day in Jamaica is the celebration of…

The Slavery Abolition Act 1833 put an end to slavery throughout the British Empire on August 1,1834. The irony of this holiday celebration is that an overwhelming number of Jamaicans are still severely oppressed by economic hardship, lack of sufficient resources, food, water, electricity, employment, suitable healthcare, and substandard education,etc. Another irony of “emancipation” is evident in the huge number of visitor visas denied every year. In fact, the average Jamaican is highly unlikely to receive a tourist visa to travel outside of the country, his/her whole life…

Imagine not being permitted to leave your homeland, in this case, the island of Jamaica which is 146 miles long x 51 miles wide. I mean, your whole life. Talk about island fever. Somehow this doesn’t sound, look or feel like emancipation to me. My own mother in law who is married, owns her own home, and car, has successfully raised five beautiful human beings, who are positively contributing to society is a perfect example. Two of her grown children (my brother and sister through marriage) are currently living in the United States. One has a masters degree and works as a teacher, the other has stable employment, owns his own home and car, and recently became an American citizen. Mama’s achievements are impressive when you consider her humble beginnings. My sweet, devoted, hardworking, mother in law, has been denied a visa to visit her children and grandchildren. Five times!!!

Just a word to the wise, emancipation on the rock is bitter sweet. Bob Marley an iconic musician, ambassador of equal rights and a social change phenomenon, said it best in his brilliant ballad Redemption Song,

“Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery”…

This sentiment has pulled me through countless episodes of darkness, fear and mental bondage. A powerful reality indeed, the idea that oppressive thoughts, doings and submissions contribute to our ability to be free…

It occurs to me that if we each take time to breathe in this idea and meditate on it, visualize it, flourishing the world over, it might just make a difference. I seal this message with a kiss and blow it like a wish from my palm across the waters this morning. That one day we all may be truly free.

One Love, walk good, breaking free…

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