Sharing this post from January 2016 with a few updates. It is still relevant, maybe even more so where our voices of diversity have been threatened. Not only do we need to boldly challenge what is being said in regards to how we age, we also need to challenge & evaluate our actions in our relationships and choose to love and be attentive to others' needs, thereby giving them a priority similar to what we give ourselves.
What age is the perfect age? How do you go about aging? …and who the heck defines that anyways? Like everyone else, I think a lot. My latest thinking is about the off-the-cuff remarks and quotes about aging I hear people say about themselves and the world around them. Many comments diverting their own importance, power, and relevance to the up and coming “younger” generation. Holy cats…yikes!!!
In thinking about aging, I panic. Don’t you love it when your brain does this frrrrr-eak out thing and a whole imaginary movie speeds through your head? Your body feels strange and your body chemistry reacts to something that's not even real. I freeze up and stand still with big wide open eyes. I'm sure I look real funny to anyone who notices me. My head movie speeds through my whole life from now until my funeral. Should I be realistic about aging? Is there a correct universal view of what aging should look and feel like? Should I follow that?!? What is it that I am supposed to get done here? Am I sharing my talents and loving people enough? I take a deep, deep breath. Whew… I’m not 99 or approaching death yet, so nobody can throw me into a social trash heap of unimportance.
Back in the day, I went to work with my dad when he was a custodian at a nursing home. I proudly hung up my dark green crocheted poncho in the nurses’ station and helped him clean. When he did things I couldn’t help him with, I went to the craft room and helped people with puzzles, painted pictures, and chatted with them.
With the wide open curiosity of a seven-year-old, I always explored the whole place. I pushed wheelchairs to help people get new scenery. I ate with them. I visited folks that were bed ridden. I helped them smile. I vividly remember smells of medicine, lysol, bad cafeteria food, illness, and sometimes death. There were sounds of beeping, low conversations, and a strange silence that made me feel queasy. I noticed alert people making their way. Others shuffled by in wheelchairs slobbering with a faint aroma of urine and old food. I thought how do people get here? What happened in their life? Why? Would this happen to me too? How can I help them? How can I cheer them up? ...Is this where I will end up? I often felt a head to toe shaking of sadness and panic as I saw no life spark in some people eyes. They looked dead even though their eyes were open and they were breathing. I asked my dad and other workers questions which they either couldn't answer or they gave me answers that felt like a pat on the head and a line of bullsh*t.
My mind still races with questions, worry, and terror. I blink rapidly hoping they’ll just go away. I try to chill out. If we are all lucky, we’ll live a long, full, healthy life...is it luck though? And how much of that is MY choice and mind set? I don’t know about you, I LOVE seeing people ahead of me being the most badass, progressive, fit, tenacious person they can be! It gives me courage, faith, and motivation. I admire the heck outa people that are hanging onto their maturing, artistic, thriving spirit in the middle of the noise of the world.
As you read this, is YOUR mind arguing for your limits and what others say about how you should age and what you should experience? Connect with your soul…what does it say?
I LOVED something I saw recently referring to aging as growing bolder. The addition of one letter makes this totally rad!! Growing BOLDER…rather than older. A-mazing! My inner champion (that part of me that doesn’t let me lie down & quit) is always rephrasing sh*t that I don’t like. My inner champion's voice says, "keep your relevance and importance! Do not give it away to someone who is younger OR older, has smoother skin, more money, education, power, status, and nope, don’t even give it away to someone with a better set of buns than you." ;) Do this by remembering you have equal value to others around you and SPEAK UP up for your value.
Be a heart & soul led human, regardless of what generation you were born in. Do not leave YOUR future in the hands of anyone. You, yes YOU, have a special gift, talent, way you see the world to add joy, invention, imagination to everyone in your world. Your life experience through the rough knocks of life, adventures, and celebrations make up your inside value. It breaks my heart when I hear people giving this value and power away in the words they speak about themselves.
I feel it's one of my soul’s mission to challenge pre-established, outdated ways of thinking and introduce the idea of possibility thinking and, of course, DOING. Nothing in life progresses without that part! Be willing to learn things that level up your kickass self! Be a person who will not release their relevance and importance to other people. In response to recent quotes and comments from “well meaning” folks… NO! I will not hand over the baton of my life energy, relevance or importance to anyone until I decide I am done on this planet.
Leading by example, young people need to know they can grow bolder, remain malleable, stay alert & healthy, and remain adventurous. Combining the vigor of youth and the wisdom of age/experience, we can work together creating value, opportunities, understanding, and awareness. To people that are older than me, picture me slapping the ground like coach Mickey from one of my favorite movies "Rocky" telling you to get up, get inspired, and get the heck back on that life horse! You are not done here! Grab hold of the self-value you have been built through sweat, tears, and love. Start expressing it and sharing it. Become a beacon of inspirational energy, mentor or activist.
Because I have been afraid of aging too (what others might say, what I will do, how I will be, unexpected life junk that shows up) I sat myself down yet again and listened to my own preachin’. Plain and simple, it is a choice to fear aging… and it is a choice to make the most of the precious life we get to live here. What a gift we can choose to be in this life by reducing the focus on age and focusing on the energy & light we bring! Cheers to kicking off 2017 in your life story <3 Please share with peeps you think could use a boost...or a kick in da pants to get going in life today.
P.S. Below are a couple people that have inspired my soul and mind :) Click on the quote box below to read more about Tao and to watch David Bowie's last music video before he passed away.
Eight years ago, my dad arrived for Christmas earlier than expected and my kids were at their dad’s house. I decided I was not going to cancel plans that were important to me. I got him settled, gave him the spare house key and asked him to relax, there was nothing to fix or clean. He seemed tired from his drive to Montana from Seattle but seemed to be tracking me alright. I reluctantly heaved out a heavy sigh and thought… oh, good, maybe I can go relax. A couple hours into my dancing event, my home number appeared on my cell. I felt my stomach pit up and the immediate urge to pee.
Resolutely I thought… this was nothing, everything was fine. I picked up and said hello. My dad said hello in the midst of laughing and asked if my front door lock had ever fallen apart after putting the key in it. I squeaked out, nnnooooo… and heard my voice go up several octaves. I thought, geez friggin’ la-wheez, I can’t do anything without having to focus on what’s happening at home. Ok, well, I need to have him use the special master key to pop the lock back in… good, good, on me. I am choosing to problem solve.
The lock on my door at the time was one that allowed me to insert a special master key, turn it, and pull out the guts of the lock for easy replacement. My house used to be a rental. That way, each time a new renter came, the owner didn’t have to replace entire door knobs, only the part where the key goes in.
I asked him to get the special master key from my dresser and instructed him what to do. He said he’d call if he had a problem. I got home after midnight and put my house key in the door – it didn’t fit. I thought, what the heck? After several attempts, I figured out that he had put the lock back in… upside down. I thought, oh well, we can put it right side up in the morning.
In the morning, I got the master key, put it in into the lock but it didn’t fit. Dad was nattering away about the details of him putting the lock back together the evening before. My irritated shoulders went up around my ears; I asked for the spare key that he used to get in the house. I put it in the lock and the guts of lock came out. I thought, what friggin’ the heck – how does his spare key pull the lock apart and the master key doesn’t?
Perplexed, I stared hard at the spare key I had given my dad. I noticed that there was a square notch missing from the side of the key that is normally smooth. I thought, holy crap, I gave dad the special master key rather than a spare house key, which is why the lock “fell apart.”
Smiling slightly, shaking my head, I put the lock back together with the special master key and then gave my dad a real spare house key. I apologized for my irritation from the prior evening. In in his usual good- natured way, he slapped me on the back saying it was ok and asked what was on the agenda for the day.
I worked off my remaining frustration doing chores and awhile later noticed my dad napping on the couch. I stopped and slowly took in his calloused, knotted knuckles and hands, deep lines in his face, white hair, and work clothes which showed years of outdoor labor.
He told me to ask mom to wait near the wood stove should he need help as he proceeded. He got his 22 rifle and a few minutes later from inside the house, I heard a loud KAA-BLANG as he shot the rifle down the chimney. The soot covers flew off the chimney raining soot all over us and inside the house. The neighbor sat in his rocking chair across the alley howling like a dog, slapping his knee laughing. We had to replace the living room carpet.
Another time when I was about 12, my dad had a horrible sinus infection, we went to the health food market to see if there was a natural way to cure it. Eureka! We found a brochure on how cayenne pepper was supposed to help sinus problems. Back home in the kitchen, I thought, what’s he going to cook? …this stuff is spicy hot and he won’t need much. Rather than making something to eat, he put a bit on his index finger, stuck it under his nose and snorted it in. Before my mouth could drop open, he leapt to the sink and turned on the facet. Choking, gasping for air with fingers up his nostrils, he tried to get it out. I snatched a towel and yelled for my mom to come help. No emergency room visit…his spiced nasal burns took about a week and a half to heal and by then, his sinus infection was gone too.
When he retold these and many, many other stories, he’d laugh heartily about why the good Lord let things happen. As a young adult, my eyes pitched toward the ceiling. I listened to him grim faced, arms folded, and sometimes blistering mad. Being the oldest child, I was almost always asked to clean up messes and I remember feeling like I was never big enough to clean things up or acquire the know-how to prevent bad things from happening in the first place. It took me awhile to view his antics humorously.
Then there were the things he tried to help me with or repair. In helping paint the garage, he spent three hours rigging up a pulley system for the extension ladder with duct tape and old buckets while I managed to paint two sides of the garage. When he went to clean and repair the venting fan in the kitchen, I watched him go through several phases of cleaning and reinstalling it. He finally called me back into the kitchen. With the fan lying on the counter in many pieces, he said, “Well, it’s clean! Good news you won’t have a grease fire. Bad news is that it won’t work now.” Rolling my eyes, we put it back together best we could and I called an electrician.
Holidays often help me remember to reflect on what I have, things that are important to me, and also my dad. He had enthusiasm that kept our family together and life interesting. He touched everyone’s heart with his generosity and infectious joy.
Eight years ago, I also remember feeling glad that old thought patterns had been changing and I had really come to appreciate the intent behind all my dad’s out-of-the-box ways of doing things. I realized that his influence in my life is part of what makes me unique, cool, weird, and gives me a deep sense of faith & value of life.
Folding up the year of 2016, I have accomplishments to be proud of, people that love me, solid work, good family, friends, and all of the other essentials. I am richly blessed. Happy. Able to love. Create. Live with much gusto and joy. I encourage you to reflect on what you are proud of, your strengths, your cool weirdness, the love you share in life, and make more of that in 2017! Cheers and happy holidays!
As I stepped into the premiere last month for “What Separates Us,” I felt sucker punched in my gut with a ton of pain and emotion; it was hard to breathe. I panicked to sift and sort it out fast as I was celebrating a fantastic day with friends and family. I didn’t want to wreck it. For a few minutes off and on, I stopped moving and stood frozen, almost paralyzed. My thoughts raced… my heart pounded in my cheeks. I felt hot and held in an insane urge to pee. Why was I feeling this on a day of celebration,?? I thought. Well...
48 months ago… my dad was diagnosed with liver cancer, my daughter broke her kneecap and a loved ex-family member was in the hospital fighting for her life and buried a dear family pet cat. Vivid memories of sleeping in the hospital and doctor's offices, death, chemotherapy, and surgeries pelted my brain.
15 years ago… I got divorced. I started single parenting life with my daughters. I felt like I a scarlet letter D had been painted on my chest. More hot redness filled my cheeks.
2 years ago… I went through round one of two very painful breakups with a guy that cost me nearly the same heart pain as my divorce. My heart felt like it slid down my body and smacked onto the floor with a soft, very painful thud.
My body conjured up those sobbing emotional pains as if they happened yesterday. And that’s only a very short list of the sh** that’s hit the fan in my life. I went from feeling an on top of the world winning feeling to feeling confused, panicky and pained in a matter of minutes.
Perception is everything. I fought to steady my breathing and refocused…
48 months ago… I got to be with my dad, one of my life heroes as his body fell apart piece by piece through cancer, chemotherapy, and diagnostic surgeries. He taught me so much more about the spirit of bravery through his dying. My daughter taught me so much about the fight for recovery and stayed after her athletic goals after she had surgery and rehabbed a cracked-in-half knee cap. I opened my heart for more forgiveness paths than I thought possible with my ex-family as supported my daughters as their grandma was dying. My other daughter taught me more about the power of presence as she spent time with my dad and her grandma as they both were dying as she simultaneously finished her senior year in college.
15 years ago… I braved into a new world of being on my own while sharing custody of my daughters with their dad. With the help of a federal Displaced Homemakers Loan, I purchased a home for us. We learned to communicate more clearly through a ton of emotional heartache which happens every time a family breaks up because of divorce.
2 years ago… I learned I loved so fully and was so committed to a man in relationship that I lost myself. With my soul broken open, I took every tear I cried and turned it into valuing my life, my love, and the world I created. Through the second break up which happened a year and a half ago, I learned to repeat to myself, “I am lucky to have me” on a frequent basis. Every day I made the courage to look love in the eye again.
Two views played a mad game of ping pong in my head. On one side was the devastation, hurt, panic that I felt when things go wrong and on the other was the thoughtful life reflection of what I made out of it. Re-framing perceptions of how I feel about those hard-to-handle life events fueled my resilience and decisions to keep moving.
Tonight…My best friend was here from North Dakota. One of my daughters, my mom, bestest ski buddy, soul sister friend, hiking buddy, dear work friends and SO many other close friends made time to come. Plus there were so many people there in spirit and offering distance support. People around me were happy. Our film group overcame so many odds and obstacles to get to this point. The film had won best picture in Alaska. Personally, I have more artistic projects in the works. AND I have on a hot dress, cool shoes, amazing hair and nails, and I am healthy… so WTF is wrong with me? I fought back buckets of tears. Tonight things were going great but I felt the same out-of-control emotional bursts inside that I felt when my dad was diagnosed with cancer and I went through divorce and breakups.
I managed my panicky pain by gliding around talking and greeting people, signing posters, seating family and friends, and reminding myself what time and space I was in. It helped, but I couldn’t figure out what the hell was wrong and it was getting worse. THIS WAS A GREAT DAY!!! …echoed over and over in my head. I finally made a beeline to the bathroom.
As I paced in there, I mentally grabbed every calming thought I could get. Then a question popped into my mind. So where does winning start? F*** it, I thought, hot tears rolling down my face. I don’t know!! Then that part of me, my inner champion, speaks from my heart to my head, it started when I made the leap of faith to make something good out of the crazy fireworks that start off in my mind, heart, and body because I care deeply. And it started when I made the choices that I deserved to be happy and to be proud because I earned this!
Heaving out a heavy breath, I made that faith leap and chose to win out over the panicky emotions. I took those out-of-control feelings and decided I was going to celebrate full out and started to clean up my face. I realized too that I was winning even when the negativity hit. I was a winner engaging the mad ping pong head game. I was a winner because I got back to celebrating a huge accomplishment!
These past four years making this film included some extremely difficult times and woven through those things was a film I acted in and helped create! It makes my heart glow big and warmly with pride. And in the past 15 years, I have stayed the course growing myself as an artist. All of those emotional fireworks from all sorts of events in the past years fuel my passion for bringing my art to life. Cheers to celebrating it!
Photo credit: Claire Reitz Shout out to my editors & inspiration: Rachel Riitano & Jaime Lue Inflore
This post would not be complete without the preacher in my head jumping on the pulpit.
Every person you meet is fighting for value, balance, and life
Some are fighting diseases like cancer;
Others fight for daily balance with chronic illness or physical debilitation
like diabetes, blindness, missing feet, or recovery from accidents.
Some are fighting to find and hold their value in this world
because of their gender, race, age, or religion.
Some are battling mental & emotional hardships.
Some are holding three jobs
to make their world just barely stay upright.
…and this only touches on a few.
Be a badass and choose to love yourself kindly and gently
Make a second choice: let that love spread into kind action to others
I am happy to have such a solid featured part in the independent film What Separates Us. Every film I work on adds to my creative experience, understanding how film is made, and most importantly boosting up my acting skills and confidence!
I am even more happy though to work with Interwoven Films who deserve credit and praise for tenacious efforts that span over four years. Bryan Ferriter, Bill Piotrowski, Isaac Marble, Quincey Kuiava, and Ryan Pfeiffer have been working on editing, sound, music, color correction, promotion, and keeping the life blood flowing through this project to it’s sweet end. A sweet end that marks really an even sweeter beginning and that is the theatrical debut of What Separates Us at the Myrna Loy Theatre in Helena, Montana. Another huge shout out to our financial backers, parents, family, friends, and businesses. Truly, without their belief in us and spending those valuable greenbacks on our dreams, this project would not be where it is today.
Over the past year, I have been letting my wins and celebrations sink deeper into my being. No words to explain how this helps my confidence grow and expand that feeling of “I can do” regarding making things happen in life.
As you read this, what can you celebrate? Where can you give yourself credit and encouragement in getting up when you fall and staying in the game? Whether you are trying to catch the biggest fish, be a better parent, learn to sing, open a business, heal from trauma & abuse, or pretty much just figure out how to be better human, praise your efforts and strength. It takes courage to share your soul’s talent and voice.
I’m sitting in appreciation this month for how far I’ve come… I’m facing fears, leveling up skills, conquering my social anxieties, and mining through my talents to come into more and more value of myself and what I offer. Sometimes it feels like it takes forrrevvvveeer to really integrate into body, mind and soul the growth and sense of accomplishment. It’s happening :)
This month I attended the inaugural Covellite International Film Festival in Butte, Montana. It was great to experience a sweet sense of connection and feeling my badass superpowers kick in making my way around the festival meeting other people and celebrating their hard work.
Nurturing and supporting experiences that help us grow can be tricky to recognize sometimes. What I’ve known for a long time and has become so much more clear this month: holding space in positive validation of current efforts, staying curious by asking questions, and speaking uplifting statements in regard to gaps in knowledge or skills means we all get to elevate our learning and value each other. Building on a person’s strengths is SO effective! Often when I’ve started out with this positive engagement, I’ve allowed other people to trump me with their negativity, complaining, telling it like it is, and worst of all just killin’ my mojo altogether with their small minded speaking. Going to this film festival a couple weeks ago helped me and so many others practice polishing our strengths.
It’s a short post this month as I am diligently working on a new and improved website to launch soon. I appreciate you stopping by my page and staying tuned! Keep putting one foot in front of the other every day though skill building, connecting to people who value positive engagement over criticism and complaining. I know you can create that awesome project that’s in your heart to share your talents blessing those around you.
I charged out the door tonight with my iPhone. Just down from my house I scoped out the best place to sit along side the river to wait for the perfect sunset moment. I thought as I waited, one of these days I’m going to get ahead of the posting My Thoughts curve and START writing a lot earlier! Yeesh. I had an epiphany of what I wanted to write about and a picture I needed to take to go with it. Since I wrote last month about they-sayers (I am a dork of a wordsmith), it’s been on a spin cycle in my head.
Earlier this month, I had a friend stay with me. One night we vented about the opinions people had been throwing at us about our lives and how we'd let it get to us. Both of us are poetry writers, so we started tossing around words to get that nasty feeling energy to move...then we started reading poetry we had written about heartaches, angst, and loss. While going through my poetry pieces, I found and read this one. I wrote it a year ago. Voices outside of myself are something I struggle with knowing how to turn that noise down. I have problems with them negatively affecting how I am feeling. Most importantly, I keep trying to find imaginative ways to turn it into art, a cake, or maybe into electric power that I can run my house on.
I shared this piece of poetry because… it’s part of my bare soul struggle -what other people say about me and to whom they repeat that gross sh*t to turns me inside out sometimes. Also, I do actually listen to my own preaching and one way I move energy around that puzzles me is by writing poetry. When people crap on my creative endeavors, I can feel the split inside me listening to voice of they-sayers and listening to the voice of my soul.
In reflecting since my last blog, I thought if I could just get my own internal stream of conversation flowing better and include more positive comments, it would support my acting, art, life, and my growth into a better human...that would be great! I have been trying to convince myself every which way to change channels. Then, eureka! I got the idea for this picture.
I know I need to put this subject down. I’ve carried it too long in my brain. As you probably know, thoughts can get deeply grooved and then it can be real tough to get rid of them. My effort in letting this go is to better understand what that unhelpful chatter does to my creative energy: It splits the beautiful sunshine coming out of my soul.
Sometimes when I understand better, I do better. They-sayers (see previous blog for definition) will come flocking in with, “You’re too old." "You’re not in the right town." "You’re not talented enough…” and a bunch of other things that diminish my worth as a human being as I continue to put myself out there artistically. I am learning to see their comments as a reflection of where they are in themselves and that's been making it easier to keep my sunshine intact.
People have said, “Oh just don’t listen to ‘em.” Easier said than done! When I know how something works or how something affects me, I can chose to be powered from the inside better so I can make a different choice. This is my reason for writing and sharing this month: to make a different and a better choice consistently. With courage in your mind and heart, stop for a moment when they-sayers are verbally puking fear and you are not good enough statements all over you. Think about YOU and what keeps your beautiful sunshine from splitting and let what they say go right on by. Second, divert yourself to an activity to bring your spirit up, biking, cooking, cleaning the garage, chatting with a friend, fishing! Third, come back to your creative endeavor, goal, or pursuit with a better focus and discernment about what kind of people, information helps you and what sinks you.
My faith in sharing my processes, stories, views, and poetry is that you’ll find a positive takeaway. Like I have written before, my inner champion (that part of me that pushes me toward love, forgiveness, celebration of life, and growth) wants the best for me and she doesn’t rest until I figure out and can sustain the practice of those processes that get me there!
Stay after your dreams and being the blessing only you can be in the world, we need your sunshine intact!
Sensible, practical, in-the-box life stories. Are you tired of ‘em? I sure am… and have been pretty much all my life. I chase light. I chase strength. I chase rainbows, good feelings, and unicorns. In order to live life or create anything, I need my head game filled with imagination, focus, resilience, a can-do attitude, and a truckload of faith.
I’ve been listening more intently lately to responses people give when a hopeful dream, imagination, or new idea is shared and how often it’s shunned, shamed, lynched, and then redirected because of all “real practicality.”
Recently, I reconnected with a fellow actress. While waiting for lunch, we caught up on personal news. Her eyes lit up, as I know mine did, feeling the creative love buzz when we spoke about current projects. As our chatter turned more toward the future, I noticed a slight change in her face. Her eyes darkened with sadness as she spoke about bringing more film & theatre to Montana. The crestfallen vibe grew so big I finally asked about it. She rattled off a few self-doubting statements, “I don’t know if it’s possible. I can’t talk to this person or that person because…” She then regurgitated a lot of things people had said to her. I felt sucker punched deep in my gut as she repeated more comments and advice from… they-sayers. (See definition below). I felt nudged in my soul, actually pushed like fu***** hell, to interrupt and attempt to shift the course of that sinking boat feeling story!!
My big haired 80’s preacher was on the pulpit in my mind in a flash! I asked questions and made statements to stop and re-direct poorly made comments and advice from they-sayers. My dignity thrown off, mouth slightly full, and talking with my hands like some of my favorite Italians I was desperate to help save her imagination, ideas and energy for the things she wants to create!
I quickly grabbed for ideas in my mind. I sputtered, probably way too loud, that creative and even life endeavors feel equivalent to Noah building his ark (...was trying to think of a story she might relate to). He had a soul calling to build an ark and asked people to join him. In the midst of they-sayer chatter and probably a whole lot of self-doubt, he followed his soul’s guidance. Noah faced challenges, focused, built it, loaded it, and got in it so his world could survive and thrive. He faced they-sayers and persevered. With tears slightly welling up in both of our eyes, I saw her eyes gain back a small spark. I felt a shift from her torn up energy to her heart space energy.
I feel heartbroken that despite so many well told stories about forward thinkers, scientists, artists, philosophers over thousands of years, people are still ignorant about holding space and even just allowing imagination, possibility thinking, dreams, and new ideas to start fresh conversations.
As I left our lunch that day, I felt I had done a good thing helping a friend re-direct her thinking and feelings toward what can be and is possible. I reminded her she is not alone; I am building my creative "ark" and life too. Then, I got to feeling small again remembering how many times I have faced similar onslaughts of crappy advice, snarky comments, flat out ridiculous responses, and people laughing at me while I was creating something. I felt my spirit shrink back as those thoughts swirled around in my head.
It won't be the last time either her, me or maybe even you will come face-to-face with they-sayers. Everywhere a new idea is expressed, they are there. I am still figuring out the best diplomatic responses to deflect that kind of input. It hasn't been easy, simple, or straightforward. I will stay on it though because I do not want to live from a shriveled up fearful place. I love living from a sense of possibility, curiosity, and imagination! It puts a spring in my step, trust in my soul, and keeps my heart adventuring! Cheers! Keep finding your soul's light - dance your dance, invent your way, share your music, heal yourself, play, and love.
They-sayers: People (aka dream crushers) who run off at the mouth giving you practical, doable, seemingly sensible comment and/or advice when you are sharing ideas, imagination, and out-of-the-box thoughts about creating something in your life. This results in a pushed down sinking feeling in your heart, self-doubt, and reduces you to little or no inspired action toward dreams and goals. (I make up word(s) or appropriate them and give them my own meanings to communicate feelings or ideas).
Don't you love the season changes! I sure do :) Right now for me, in this season of my life, my schedule is running pretty packed with creative projects. One of the ones I've been looking forward to the most, Willow Creek Road, starts filming this week. Taking a real big breath and placing my focus as present as I can to enjoy every minute of this year long adventure getting to this point. Look for pictures soon! Sundance here we come!
In between The Big Muddy web series filming, photography, a few acting classes, some travel, reading, writing, filming for the Willow Creek Road, working, studying and all the day-to-day chores... there is family and friends that I love adventuring with. I have said it before, nature recharges my soul. Mother Nature needs our attention and it gives so much in return.
Earlier this month, I made my first long hike. I haven't made one this long in a few years. Our family feet carried us 12 miles round trip in about six hours. Hanging Valley Trail has been on my list. I was nervous that I didn't have the stamina to complete it; it was an intense hike. Lots of downed trees. Lots of pretty steep ups and downs. Through some tunnels and slabs of rock to the stopping end point. The end point was breathtaking as was our need for great big hamburgers once we got off the trail!
I am keeping this month's post pretty short as I keep trying to pace myself more towards balance in my life. I do have lots I am learning and will start sharing more soon.
All I want to say is, stay in the game! I know it's hard sometimes, things smack you in the face with disappointment or may be more work than what you might have thought. Stay after those dreams and goals. Shamelessly shine your light and talents bright out loud. Big hugs and loves
Yeeehaw! Our Kickstarter crowd funding was a success for filming the final segments of a western web series, The Big Muddy! Segments 4 and 5 will be filmed starting this weekend through the end of summer 2016. I am excited to be more in front of the camera this time. My earlier featured character has an expanded role!
It's been tough (understatement) keeping one foot steady in my day job and the steady world I've created to hold myself and the people I love and the other foot is doing the polka in my creative world. You need both feet for walking. So...lately, I feel like I've been walking funny ;) Despite the weird looks I get and things people say, I am happy and... exhausted as hell. The happy though is what I keep bringing my focus back to. It's empowering when you can create a vision in your mind, follow steps & paths to get there, handle the sh** that comes up and then feel the joy of creating with your team of artists.
This month, all I can say is keep on dreaming & doing (that's the important part!) those things that make your heart sing and bless the world in positive, loving ways like only you know how.
One of my favorite pictures from summer 2015. On the left of me is our project creator, director, filmmaker Chris Hoffert and on the right is Stan Smith, casting, actor, location scouter.
What a wonderful thing it is to learn! A short note this month (a week earlier than usual) to encourage you in a project you are working on, whether it be repainting cabinets, learning to sing, or being a better parent. Learning does not have to have a pain price tag with 20/20 hindsight and a big mess to clean up. You can learn proactively, on the fly, from others, and most importantly apply what you are learning to life, the arts, and love… and of course, with a bunch of laughs included!
If you are in the area, I have been cast and am participating in the Last Chance Play Festival, which is part of the larger Fringe Festival network. Fringe is experimental theatre and honors many artists sharing their original work and performances. Keep in mind to check the ratings for each show if you are or have younger people you’d like to bring. (See show postcard with specific dates and performance times.) Tickets are available about 20 minutes before each performance for $10 at the door. It’s open seating. This show is for a mature 16+ audience.
“Colter’s Hell is an ecological fantasy where the animals of the Rocky Mountain wilderness confront legendary mountain man and fur trapper John Colter. The play draws parallels between the radical environmental change triggered during the early 19th century and the challenges faced today.
The protagonists of the tale, Coyote, Raven, Chipmunk, Trout, and others try to discourage him. But Colter persists undaunted by the frightening geology of Yellowstone Park, native hunting bands, and hallucinatory visits by Canadian pitchmen and philosopher John Locke until he raises the ire of Wishpoosh, a mythic, giant, albino beaver.” -Ross Peter Nelson, Playwright
In sharing my heart and growth through blogging, stories, and poetry, I have faith you'll find possibility, empowerment, and inspiration to create like a champion in your own life.
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