The Connection Between Dreams & Creativity

I’ve always been a big-time dreamer. I have vivid dreams pretty much every night, and lots of times I can remember them. For a long time, I didn’t realize that wasn’t the norm.

There was a period of my adult life when, for various reasons, I was repressing my natural creativity.

Maybe “repressing” is a strong word, but I definitely wasn’t following my calling to write and create. The vivid dreams, though, continued – and even got more movie-like.

It was during my late thirties when I started to crack open my vault of creativity and let it flow. As I go back through my Dream Journals and type up dreams from past years (it’s one of the “personal projects” I’ve been working on), it’s interesting how certain themes seem to weave through my dreamtime life.

Sometimes these dream themes are at the forefront of my consciousness. At other times, they remain steeped in mystery.

Last month I started a year-long course that’s focused on Hermetic magick and alchemy. We’re actively working with our dreams in our alchemical journals. Once again I’m noticing the way my dream life reflects not only my waking life, but what I’m working on creatively.

It’s not a matter of literally dreaming about the things I’m writing (not usually, anyway). It’s more like a feeling of resonance, an ephemeral thread of meaning that’s woven through my waking and dreaming lives. It’s hard to explain. If you’re familiar with the notion of synchronicity, you’ll have a sense of what I’m talking about.

Maybe an example will help.

Dreams often inspire me with strange-seeming images or phrases that then become part of my creative process. Last night in a dream I was described as “quarely brave.” I woke up and wondered what in the world that meant. Was it supposed to be “queerly?” I’m bisexual, so that’s considered queer, right? Kinda?

But no, the word was definitely “quarely.” I looked it up on my phone, and learned that it means “very much, a great deal” and is from the early 19th century. So I was rather brave. But why? Just now, I looked it up again on my laptop, and one of the meanings of “quare” is “remarkable or strange,” in Irish dialect. It’s also a dialectical variant of queer.

The synchronicity piece, in this case, is that my Mom was just looking up some genealogical research she’d done and reminded us (and herself) that some of her mother’s ancestors were from Ireland.

So I’m very brave, in a strange way, at least in my dreams. That’s how my Irish ancestors might have phrased it. Huh.

What does that have to do with my creative process? I’m not sure yet, other than using it as an example in this post. But it’s one of those snippets of things that gets stuck in my mind, tumbling over and over, like a piece of sea glass.

Dreams, magick, the books I read, Tarot cards, conversations, ancestors, the shows I watch. All of these things, and more, inspire my creative process.

At a time in my life when I didn’t identify myself as particularly creative, dreams were my mind’s canvas. The innate creativity that we each possess was determined to shine through.

Even if you don’t usually recall your dreams, they’re still there, underneath the surface. Notice the mood that pervades your space when you first wake up. Discover the threads of meaning.

Let the inspirations of your sacred sleep time become a living part of your waking creativity. Follow the magickal threads, and see where they lead you.

Starcat’s Favorites: You Know It’s Summer

At this time of year, when I think about my favorite things, it’s SUMMER that comes to mind. If you’ve read this blog for any length of time, you’re familiar with how much I love the warm season.

Here in Maine, it means swimming, picnics, hikes, reading in the hammock, and long hot days. I adore it.

One of my friends is the opposite. Her favorite season is winter, and she struggles more at this time of year. Recently we were commenting how we’ve been a positive influence on one another over the years. She now has some things she enjoys about summer, and I’m the same with wintertime.

It’s cool to see how others look at the world through a completely different lens.

That seems to be part of the theme of this year – seeing through others’ eyes. This is a good thing.

Here are some resources that I’m finding useful in this time of civil rights activism and the pandemic, and others that are part of my ongoing metaphysical studies.

“To build a nation of equal opportunity for everyone, we need to dismantle this spurious legacy of our common upbringing. One of the best ways to do this is by reading books.” – from this article by Ibram X. Kendi. I can totally do that (and yes, I know reading isn’t the only thing we need to do to be anti-racist).

Leonie Dawson’s take on anti-racism resources: “I think it’s important for us all to look at the way we may be contributing to racism and cultural appropriation, especially if we identify as white, liberal hippies.” Included in her list is a particular resource by Leesa Renee Hall that I’ve been hearing a lot of good things about, so I want to highlight it here – I haven’t taken the course yet, but it’s on my radar to purchase for the fall.

Our whole culture is in the process of shapeshifting.

Here’s an interesting article on using your creative talents to work for good.

Check out some yogic tips for staying healthy during uncertain times. Also this one about mindset, by Sah D’Simone:  “It’s true that life is unpredictable, and it’s also true that you have the power to remain yourself, with your heart open, through any challenge.”

How to hug during a pandemic. Aww…

Criticism isn’t helping things. Let’s just be kind to one another.

Here are those metaphysical-studies links I mentioned:

On lucid dreaming.

An interesting read on the Divine Paradox, although dense and with outdated patriarchal language. If you’re not ready to dive into the text commentary, just reading the quote at the top is thought-provoking.

I haven’t read all of this yet, and certainly can’t say I agree with everything in it, but wanted to leave it here as an access point to learning more about chaos magick. (I have a certain fondness for chaos – just ask those who play board games with me).

Wishing you a joyful summer weekend!

What’s Your Big Vision?

I talk a lot on this blog, over time, about vision boards. That’s because I love making them and find them a useful reminder of my aims.

But let’s step back just a moment. In order to use a vision board, you kind of need to have… a vision.

What is it that you want to bring into being?

I’ve been working on refining my vision for my business over the past several months. I’ve put a lot of thought into my Deep Why, my vision, and my mission for my work as a book midwife. This is something you can do for any key area of your life, or as a holistic vision that encompasses your entire being.

Making a written version of your vision for the world and your contributions helps you to focus on what you truly want. 

Here’s what I’ve come up with so far. I want to share it with you because it’s something I’m super inspired by and passionate about – but also so you can get a sense of how you might craft your own vision & mission statements.


STARCAT’S DEEP WHY:

Excavating my inner creativity and fulfilling my dream of being a published author and entrepreneur has transformed my life. I want to give that gift to others who are called to write. I wish to encourage them to spread their wisdom far and wide, uplifting readers who are ready to hear it. I want these gifts of creativity to help create a more conscious society.

STARCAT’S VISION:

My vision is a vast network of empowered, creative people who are embracing the rise of the Feminine Divine and the awakening of human consciousness by sharing their deepest wisdom and most inspiring passions. Together we are changing the world by collaboratively building a more conscious society, in all aspects of human life and beyond.

STARCAT’S MISSION:

In order to get this empowering wisdom into the world, I help people give birth to their heart-centered books. I assist them in finding the topics that sing from their soul and putting their wisdom into writing that will reach seekers who are ready to learn. I encourage them as they become Thriving Artists. I provide the sacred container of transformational retreats by the sea in which to dive deep into writing and other forms of creativity. Together we do this holy work, soulfully and in ways that are fun, productive, and deeply satisfying.


It’s your turn. What is the Deep Why that helps keep you motivated and inspired? What is your vision of the future? How will you use your gifts & skills to contribute? How would you like to live? Who will collaborate with you?

Take some time to contemplate and perhaps journal about your answers. Come up with more questions. Brainstorm in whatever way feels most fun.

My own next step is to encompass other parts of my life, like my home & family and my own written works, in my vision and mission.

Then, of course, I’ll probably want to make another vision board or two…  

Please post your thoughts below. I’d love to hold space for your exciting visions for your life and your communities!

A Poem From the Animus

What I Love About You
by Nikki Starcat Shields

Your willingness to continually
Show up for yourself
and your dreams.
The way we danced
the tango
last night,
tangled in drifts
of potential.
How clearly you see
your fears.
The friends you don’t
see anymore
but still care about.
Waking up hungry
for more life.
You manifest like a poet.
You write wild
and live tame.
You’re open to change
and steeped
in habit.
Your soul dances
to rhythms
that have never yet
been played.
Your darkness guides you
back to the light.
You play hard
and work softly.
Your love
is demanding.
Your compassion
is fierce.
You insist on staying grounded
in bliss.
Your broken smile
is radiant.
You act globally
and think locally.
You have the growl
of a kitten.
You don’t exist at all.
You are everywhere.
You are as powerful
as a monarch butterfly.
Your sovereignty
frees me.

141 Mind-Altering Books to Awaken Your Spirit

I asked the writers in my Sacred Path program to choose one book to read with a curious mind this month – to peek behind the curtain and see how the book was crafted. As part of that process, I shared some books on writing craft, but noted that any type of book would work.

Since some of my clients are writing in the self-help genre, I also suggested a list I’d made of 99 books on spirituality.

Then I got thinking about how many amazing transformational books I’ve read since I made the list back in 2014. So here’s an updated version, with 42 additional books, for your reading pleasure.

***

Want to expand your awareness? Create a life full of magick and enchantment? Open yourself up to daily experiences full of joy, love, and support? Of course you do!

Start here, with this list of inspiring books, which itself was inspired by a social media meme. It’s not your ordinary list of the best works of world literature, or books that will help you ace your college entrance exams. These books will, if you let them, change your world by expanding your vision of what is possible.

Perhaps you’ve read some of them already. How did they transform you? Do you have other books that need to be on this list? Please add them in the comments.

Next, pick out a book or two or three from the list, the ones that call to you with clamoring voices. Be careful, though…you’ll never be the same again!

Dive in. I dare you! Extra bonus points if you read them outdoors.

Blessings,
Starcat

141 Mind-Altering Books to Awaken Your Spirit: The UPDATED List

Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins
The Fifth Sacred Thing by Starhawk
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley
The Temple of My Familiar by Alice Walker
Always Coming Home by Ursula K. LeGuin
In the Shadow of the Shaman by Amber Wolfe
Pronoia: The Antidote for Paranoia by Rob Brezsny
This I Know: Notes on Unraveling the Heart by Susannah Conway
The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron
The Teenage Liberation Handbook by Grace Llewellyn
Conscious Dreaming by Robert Moss
Fire in the Head by Tom Cowan
1491 by Charles Mann
Radical Homemakers by Shannon Hayes
Turtle Island by Gary Snyder
The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff
A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle
The Illuminatus! Trilogy by Robert Anton Wilson
Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein
Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury
Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman
Evolutionary Witchcraft by T. Thorn Coyle
The Last Coin by James Blaylock
Alphabet of Thorn by Patricia McKillip
The Moorchild by Eloise McGraw
The Onion Girl by Charles de Lint
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig
Illusions by Richard Bach
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
The Kin of Ata Are Waiting for You by Dorothy Bryant
Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling
Drumming at the Edge of Magic by Mickey Hart
The Hero With a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell
The Collected Autobiographies by Maya Angelou
Stardust by Neil Gaiman
Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke
Animal Dreams by Barbara Kingsolver
The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende
The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield
The Dreaming Universe by Fred Alan Wolf
Earth by David Brin
The Earthsea Cycle by Ursula K. LeGuin
Walden by Henry David Thoreau
Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman
Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy by J. R. R. Tolkien
The Oversoul Seven Trilogy by Jane Roberts
The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Deepak Chopra
Infinite Possibilities by Mike Dooley
Wherever You Go, There You Are by Jon Kabat-Zinn
Sara, Book 1: Sara Learns the Secret About the Law of Attraction by Esther and Jerry Hicks
Women Who Run With the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes
Woman Who Glows in the Dark by Elena Avila
Anam Cara by John O’Donohue
Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Imajica by Clive Barker
The Dancing Wu Li Masters by Gary Zukav
Real Magic by Isaac Bonewits
A Path With Heart by Jack Kornfield
Old Path White Clouds by Thich Nhat Hanh
The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying by Sogyal Rinpoche
Memories, Dreams, Reflections by C.G. Jung
Creative Visualization by Shakti Gawain
The Kingkiller Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss
The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis
Otherland Series by Tad Williams
Inkheart by Cornelia Funke
The Self-Aware Universe by Amit Goswami
The Holographic Universe by Michael Talbot
The Twelve Wild Swans by Starhawk and Hilary Valentine
The Dark Tower Series by Stephen King
The Odyssey by Homer
Eureka: A Prose Poem by Edgar Allen Poe
The Princess Bride by William Goldman
Skellig by David Almond
E-Squared by Pam Grout
The Art of Uncertainty by Dennis Merritt Jones
Spiritual Midwifery by Ina May Gaskin
The Good Life by Helen and Scott Nearing
Wheels of Life by Anodea Judith
Hidden Messages in Water by Masaru Emoto
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
The God Stalker Chronicles by P.C. Hodgell
Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman
A Separate Reality by Carlos Castaneda
Woman on the Edge of Time by Marge Piercy
The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
His Dark Materials Series by Philip Pullman
The Abhorsen Series by Garth Nix
The Seat of the Soul by Gary Zukav
The Nature of Personal Reality by Seth and Jane Roberts
The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle
The Essential Rumi by Jalal al-Din Rumi
Owls and Other Fantasies by Mary Oliver
Loving What Is by Byron Katie
The Slow Regard of Silent Things by Patrick Rothfuss
The Journey Into Spirit: A Pagan’s Perspective on Death, Dying, & Bereavement by Kristoffer Hughes
Stillness Speaks by Eckhart Tolle
The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Tantra for the West: A Direct Path to Living the Life of Your Dreams by Marc Allen
Fail. Fail Again. Fail Better by Pema Chodron
The Afterlife of Billy Fingers by Annie Kagan
Of Bees and Mist by Erick Setiawan
Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert
The Natural Psychic by Ellen Dugan
The Power of Intention by Dr. Wayne Dyer
City of Refuge by Starhawk
The Top Ten Things Dead People Want to Tell You by Mike Dooley
Dream Alchemy: Shaping Our Dreams to Transform Our Lives by Ted Andrews
The Book of Ho’oponopono: The Hawaiian Practice of Forgiveness and Healing by Luc Bodin, Natalie Bodin Lamboy and Jean Graciet
The Ancient Secret of the Flower of Life, volumes 1 & 2 by Drunvalo Melchizedek
Thank and Grow Rich by Pam Grout
The Desire Map by Danielle LaPorte
The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks
The Seven Archetypal Stones: Their Spiritual Powers and Teachings by Nicholas Pearson
The Universe Has Your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein
Education of a Guardian Angel: The Training of a Spirit Guide by Annie Stillwater Gray
The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer
The Transformational Power of Dreaming by Stephen Larsen and Tom Verner
The Winternight trilogy by Katherine Arden
You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero
The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron
We Were Witches by Ariel Gore
Becoming by Michelle Obama
It’s Not Your Money by Tosha Silver
The Surrender Experiment by Michael Singer
War for the Oaks by Emma Bull
The Book of Afformations by Noah St. John
The Story Solution by Johnny B. Truant and Sean Platt
A Happy Pocket Full of Money by David Cameron Gihandi
Empathic Mastery by Jennifer Elizabeth Moore
Great Goddesses: Life Lessons from Myths and Monsters by Nikita Gill
Magickal Mystical Creatures by D.J. Conway
Becoming Supernatural by Dr. Joe Dispenza
Untamed by Glennon Doyle Melton
Animal Speak by Ted Andrews

Starcat’s Favorites: Summer Begins

It’s late May in Maine, and our weather has leaped ahead to feeling like early July. I’m not complaining at all – I love the heat!

I’m still going for near-daily woods walks, and also spending time in my hammock.

We haven’t been swimming yet, because that water is surely super cold, but soon…

Even though things are still in a state of upheaval in our society, with no festivals or concerts likely this year, the start of summer seems to ease our minds a bit. At least mine…

I decided that I’m not doing any in-person workshops or retreats this year, but that doesn’t mean that nothing is happening. Between virtual retreats & workshops, the Parallel PlayDates, and the writing group I’m leading, there’s so much opportunity for fun & creativity! BlackLion and I are even doing a fun virtual book launch in July, for our new book (coming soon), Follow the Ebb & Flow: The Law of Attraction and the Tides of Life.

Here are some links for you to peruse in your hammock, on the deck, in your favorite comfy spot, or wherever you’re welcoming summer.

Have I mentioned lately how much I adore Jeannette Maw, the Good Vibe coach? I’m in her Ultimate Abundance Maker course right now and it’s powering up my world even more! Here are two recent favorites, It’s OK to Feel It and The Perks of Procrastination.

I confess to being slightly addicted to reading other peoples’ lists of favorite books, even if I have plenty of options on my to-read shelf. Surely I’m not the only one? Here are one, two, three interesting book lists to check out.

Venus Retrograde will be part of our lives over the next few weeks. I like Chani Nicholas’ take on it. Also, Venus is not the only one…  “Retrograde Galore.”

Some people are actually thriving during these “shelter in place” times. Hello, my fellow introverts! Also, though we don’t know what the future may hold, we do have the power to choose what to focus on next.

That’s all for me – I’m off to buy some seedlings and cheer on the green thumbs in my family as they plant a veggie garden. Oh, and probably hit the hammock, too, if the rain holds off…

Nature Is Healing

Nature is healing. It’s amazing to me how many times in life I forget this, and then remember it again.

I’m blessed to live in a beautiful rural area in Maine. Out behind our home, there are acres and acres of forest. I take it for granted sometimes.

I mean, it’s kind of obvious that I’m a bookish type. Even though my spirituality is Earth-based, I’m more likely to curl up and read than to go outside, most days.

But not recently. One of my immediate family’s personal projects this spring, as we’re “sheltering in place,” has been to reclaim the trails out back, on our extended family’s land (all of these pictures are from this place).

It’s been such fun – and now I go out and walk on the “moon paths” just about every day. Our dog, Aine, is absolutely loving it. She reminds me on the days I forget. We even go out in the rain.

When I’m out in the forest, it’s easy to be absolutely present. To recharge. To embrace inner stillness and quiet my mind. To observe the amazing beauty and power of Mother Nature.

I think about the Buddhist quote about how – I’m paraphrasing – on the days you’re busiest, that’s when you need to take MORE time to meditate. It’s like that with me and walking in the woods, now.

On a day that’s packed full of Zoom calls and business tasks and chores, it’s even more vital to take that half-hour or hour and go visit the trees.

Walking in nature is good for the body. It enhances your emotional well-being. It gives you mental space and clarity. It connects you to the spiritual web of All That Is.

My daily forest jaunts are giving me the bountiful gifts of healing.

What about you? Are you in a place where you can safely get some time outside?

You don’t have to live in a rural setting to get your regular dose of nature.

If you’re in a more urban area, perhaps there’s a park or shoreline where you can take a solo jaunt. In the suburbs, find the walking paths.

Even if the most you can do is to go out and sit on your balcony or steps, give it a try.

Feel the breeze and the sun.

Look for flowers.

Listen for birds.

Let Mother Nature’s healing powers work their magick on your soul. 

Blessed Be.

Personal Projects, No Pressure

Creative people like us often have a bunch of projects underway at any given time. Despite what you might hear or read, this is a good thing.

Our brains work differently from those who move in a linear fashion from one project to another. Creativity is less like a line and more like a wild, spiraling map-style flow chart with lots of scenic overlooks.

As if to prove the point, that last sentence makes me want to draw just such a thing in my art journal. Heh heh.

In my experience, I find that having some of my creative projects be personal ones, just for my own use, helps keep my main creative work – writing books – fresh. There’s no pressure to finish a personal project or to craft a particular outcome. There are no deadlines.

When I focus on a personal project, I’m doing what might look like work, but it’s just for fun.

Here are a few examples of what I mean by personal projects. I have two of them that I’ve been working on recently.

One is my Dream Chronicles. I started keeping dream journals in the early 1990s. I don’t write in my dream journal every day, or capture each dream. Instead, I write down the ones that seem particularly significant.

After reading some of the Robert Moss books on dreaming – highly recommended if you’re interested in working with your dreams – I started giving each dream a title. I came up with the idea of typing them up, adding keywords as I go, to see which symbols and topics show up most often.

The plan is to print the dreams and create a binder of them. I even created a collage-style cover (see photo).

This project has no timeline. I’m probably not going to share it with anyone. It’s just for me, for the fun of it.

My other personal project was inspired by a super cool birthday gift I received last fall. My son-in-law gifted me with a create-it-yourself oracle card deck. It was such fun to pick out the theme and the artwork together!

My theme is magickal creatures. He had it printed up for me, with a cool case and everything. My project is that I’m making a guidebook for the deck.

I’m doing research on the creatures I chose, and plan to also write a haiku for each card. Again, this is just for my own use, and just for the sheer joy of it.

I’m currently reading D.J. Conway’s book Magickal Mystical Creatures as part of my research for the oracle deck.

My favorite personal projects obviously involve study and writing, which I love. Others will have completely different ideas of fun personal projects.

A dear friend of mine who is a visual artist and a writer is making a warrior’s kit. He’s repurposed an old guitar case, hand-sewing pockets and sheaths into it for his collection of knives, shuriken, and other weaponry.

Mind you, I’ve known him for 30 years and haven’t seen him get into a fight yet. But this is something that lights him up, while researching magickal beasts might be tedious for him.

A personal project is one that you do just for you, with no desire to share, sell, or distribute the potential results.

What kind of personal projects do you have going? Do you have any you haven’t played with in quite some time? This might be the perfect moment to dig one out.

If you don’t have a personal project in mind, do some brainstorming. Make a blue-sky list of creations that sound truly delightful and completely whimsical. Do you want to stop what you’re doing right now and dive in? You’re on the right track.

I’d love to hear about your personal creative projects, if you’re in the mood for sharing!

Key Life Lessons I Learned From My Mom

My Mom is a really amazing woman. No, I’m not just saying that because I was lucky enough to be born to her half a century ago.

A whole lot of people whose lives she’s touched think she’s awesome, too.

Here are 11 key life lessons I’ve learned from her.

No guilt. This is one of Mom’s favorite sayings, and it’s so true. Life is short enough. You’re going to mess up sometimes, so make amends, apologize, and move on. Why waste time on past regrets?

Enjoy life’s little pleasures. The smell of fresh baked bread. Flowering trees. A cat purring. A sunny day. Notice the little blessings that are all around you, and revel in them.

It doesn’t cost anything to be kind. This is another favorite saying of Mom’s, and she lives it. She’s kind not only to her family and friends, but to all the people she encounters.

Document the joys. People in our family sometimes roll their eyes when they see her coming with the camera again. But they also appreciate the photo calendars she makes every December, and being reminded of the fun times we’ve had throughout the year.

Family is a treasure. Mom has made us, her family (which also includes a bunch of people we’ve informally adopted), a priority throughout our lives together. She loves our positive qualities, and overlooks our flaws. This attitude of caring has rippled outward, and we all have each others’ backs. It’s a lovely way to live.

Reading is wonderful. Mom is as much of a bookworm as I am, if not more! She gifted me with the love of stories. I am ever grateful.

Women are people too. Mom taught me that there are still injustices in the world, and that we can work to change them. One of her favorite ways to do so is to lift up, encourage, and celebrate women. We’re part of a lineage of women – and others – changing society for the better.

Don’t follow the herd. Trying to be like everyone else is boring. Mom revels in her unique interests, and is super creative. She is one of a kind!

Make your own fun. I often say about my family that we’re the ones laughing together even in the Emergency Room. Literal truth. We choose to see the bizarre humor in even the toughest situations. She has led the way. She brings the fun wherever she goes. I strive to do that, too.

Be a good listener. Mom has been blessed with lots of friends. People know her as a good listener, one who will compassionately hear you out. This is a good quality to have in life.

You are tougher than you think. My Mom has survived more health challenges than 4 or 5 people put together. She is strong, even when she’s fragile. Granite rock strong. She’s shown me that even when I’m feeling weakest, I can endure, and even thrive.

Happy Mother’s Day!!!

Starcat’s Favorites: The Forest

One of the things I’ve been enjoying most during this time of sheltering in place is walking in the woods behind our home.

I’m blessed to live on family land that was my grandmother’s. She died when I was just 15, but even before that, I remember her saying how she wanted the land to be a family legacy. And now it is.

Walking on the trails we’re reclaiming gives me feelings of calm, joy, and peace. Nature is such a healer.

I’ve also (of course) been enjoying reading. Here are some inspiring reads for your weekend.

While there is without doubt a lot of suffering and fear right now, there are also some silver linings and plenty of opportunities for growth, both individually and collectively. I enjoyed this article on the “Corona cocoon” and this one about not going back to exactly the way things were.

So many of my favorite wise women are writing about the bigger lessons we’re gaining, and how to navigate our way through: Danielle LaPorte, Regena Garrepy, and Rebecca Campbell among them.

I’m feeling an expansion and deepening of my creativity now. Here are some tips to guide you to your own creative wellspring.

It’s also a time of great surrender, and maybe you’re not getting anything done. That’s perfectly fine, too. (Looking for some good books to read?)

This article on keeping up your yoga practice while traveling is something I came across before all of this – but it’s still fun to read, and to imagine a time when you’ll travel again.

Much love and good health to you and yours!