My first craft fair!

Today I was In a beautiful greenhouse gift nursery at  4845 SW. Third, Corvallis Oregon, selling my scarves and workshops and other pretty things.  I will be there again tomorrow from 10 AM till 4 PM. Please come have a look!

My sister Krista was there, sharing a table with me, selling her ceramics. She makes sculptures and wallhangings and pendants.    Her fiancé  Kevin was there helping for the day.

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For our first time having a display at a craft fair we had a good experience. I sold a workshop  certificate and a few items.  Krista sold several items as well.  Yay us!

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This year I am thankful for . . .

So many thing I could list but for this year I am especially thankful for the release of my long held pain which I thank God for the help in healing, as well as all my wonderful friends and family for being so supportive through my long journey to recovery.  Life can throw us some pretty difficult lessons and I have always believed we could get through them with God’s help, but I wondered when it would happen for me.  I guess I was finally ready to let go of the pain, and I asked God to help me let go of it.  He did.

Though my rage has been uncovered and understood and finally embraced for it’s function, I now look upon it as an ally when I need protection.  I am thankful for everything along the path to this new understanding.  I am thankful for God helping me let go of my hurt and anger toward others who have hurt me in the past.  If I have hurt anyone in the past, I am truly sorry for causing you pain, and I ask your forgiveness.  Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Almost killed a guy!

It was dark.  The roads were shiny with the rain.  I was driving home through Salem on Lancaster Rd. near Lancaster Mall, going about 35 mph.

I had been to Joann’s for some beads and as I drove home I had the thought cross my mind, ‘Wouldn’t it be terrible if I got into an accident and got killed and my obituary would read, “She was on her way home after feeding her addiction at the bead store.”  They would find my body sprawled out all contorted among hundreds of shiny little beads.  I was feeling a little guilty about buying more beads I guess.

A few moments later, I had a thought about searching in my purse for something (OK, I’ll admit it, my phone) but my purse was on the floor of the passenger side so I couldn’t reach it.  That was interesting because I typically have my purse right beside my feet on my side of the car.  I remembered setting it on that side and thinking, ‘I won’t be able to reach my purse if it’s over here.’  Then I thought rightly, ‘I shouldn’t be getting into my purse while I’m driving anyway.’  So I left it there.  Not typical for me.

All those thoughts flashed through my mind in a fraction of a second as I looked at my purse across the car, and I thought, ‘Well, it’s true, I shouldn’t be looking at my purse, or my phone, or anything else while I’m driving anyway.  I’ll just wait till I get home.’

Within a few seconds, as I passed to the right of a line of cars turning left into a strip mall, I saw a man dash out from between two cars waiting to turn left.  He was only about 10 yards from my oncoming car (still going about 35) and I could barely see him apart from the red brake lights of the cars in front of and around me.  He also had dark skin and hair.  The only light colored thing on him was a dingy white t-shirt.  He was still practically invisible to me.

When he looked up at me, with a surprised look on his face, I saw him for the first time.  He sprinted to cross my lane before I hit him.  I braked quickly and barely missed him!  If I had been glancing away at that moment, I would have missed seeing him and would have hit him full on.

I am so glad for the little protective hints we get along the way.  Too often I have ignored them or argued against them, only to have my ignorance bite me later.  I am so glad I listened that night, and left my purse out of reach.

Hmmm . . . maybe I should make that a habit . . . or, hey . . . simply make a decision to never get into my purse while I’m driving.  That will be a tough one.  It probably saved that man’s life though.

Basking at the end of the day.

I was so frustrated around 1 o’clock this afternoon because I had no energy! I called my daughter Melanie and talked to her about it and she suggested I might not be consuming enough calories. When I looked, I decided that must be true because for the last few days I had only been eating about 1200 cal a day. So I went to the health food store and bought some gluten-free brownies.  I decided to not worry about my no sugar stars and just get some energy so I can finish this barn!

I ate four brownies and two slices of Munster cheese and drank some Kombucha. This added up to 900 cal.  After that I worked for three straight hours with plenty of energy! 🙂

Then I went in, took a hot bath and went straight to bed! I was so tired I couldn’t eat any more vegetables LOL. Total calories for the day, around 1200 still. My breakfast was only 300.

Dealing with Depression

I recently made a comment in another persons website about one of the ways I deal with depression so I thought I would share it here.
I have an approach called Focusing which I learned from my teacher Tom Brown Jr. (which approach I received by going out and going to Wilderness Survival classes at Trackerschool). The concept of focusing is also taught in a basic way in a book called Focusing, but Tom took us further in the exercise.
First, you get yourself in a quiet place away from others, preferably in nature, be quiet for a minute, just enjoying relaxing, then after a few minutes, ask yourself, “How am I feeling?” and surrender to the first feeling that comes up. If the first feeling that comes up is, “Fine, I feel fine.” Say to yourself, “No, really, how are you REALLY feeling?” Then in a VERY LOVING, NON JUDGMENTAL way, you say, “That’s good to know!” Then you ask, “Why am I feeling this way?”, and surrender to the answer that comes to you. Again, no judgement, only love and understanding. Say, “Well, that’s good to know!.”
Next, you set that feeling off to the side and you say to yourself, “Great, now aside from that, How am I feeling?” and surrender to the next feeling that comes up. Once you identify the next feeling, in a very loving, understanding, non judgmental way, say to yourself, “Good, that’s good to know. So why am I feeling this way?” Surrender to the answer and acknowledge that answer with love and understanding.
Next, you set those first feelings aside and say to yourself, “OK, Aside from those, How am I feeling?” Surrender to the answer. Again, in a very loving understanding way say to yourself, “Good, that’s good to know! Now, why am I feeling this way?” Surrender to the answer and acknowledge it with gratitude.
Tom told us to peel back AT LEAST 4 layers of feelings as a minimum, but he also told us, “When you think you have gone as far as you can go, keep going.”
More likely you will find many, many layers of feelings and reasons why.
This is peeling back the layers that make up that confusing mix of feelings which may be making you feel stuck, depressed, or confused. Bringing the individual emotions up and the why’s behind them, is healing because those feelings are being acknowledged in a very understanding way. There are reasons why we feel the way we do.
The first time I did this exercise we were given 45 minutes. I kept being distracted after the first 10 minutes or so. We were each sitting out in nature away from anyone else. It was very difficult to stay on task of peeling back the layers of feelings, but each layer was a revelation to one degree or another. I had no idea each of those individual feelings were carrying on at the same time, contributing to how I was feeling overall. It’s almost funny, looking back, I would uncover a feeling and the way behind it, and get caught up in thoughts about it and completely forget I was doing an exercise! Then I would remember, and almost be startled that I had forgotten that fact! Then I would go to the next layer. Going deeper was difficult for some reason. I couldn’t imagine there could be another layer, but there always was! And the deeper I got, the more surprised I was at what feeling was in that layer (I kept going with dogged determination because I paid a lot of money for that class and I wasn’t about to waste any of my time learning all I could)!!
Then the jewel . . . under all the feelings, I found myself. I had no idea until then who I really was. I can’t describe to you how I felt when I saw myself for who I really am, but I can say it was good, and I couldn’t stop weeping in absolute joy!
When they called us back in to the lecture hall, I couldn’t stop crying. Tom said, “It’s about time you got rid of all that sh#*!” I don’t know if he understood I was crying for joy or not, but the experience was life changing.
Before Tom sent us out to do this exercise, he told us to write down the feelings and the why’s as they came up. Once the exercise was done, he had us go through the list of feelings and circle the one that felt the most important to us. For many the most important feeling was not the first one we felt come up. He had us circle it and write a little #1 by it. Then we went through the list again, looking for the one that felt most important aside from the first feeling that was circled. When we found the next one that felt most important, we circled it and put a #2 by it. We continued circling and numbering the feelings until we felt we had circled all the important ones.
By doing the second half of this exercise, circling the most important feelings to us, we might be surprised which feelings are most important or strongest, and which feelings that have not been circled are clouding or hiding our most important feelings.
Some logistics:
Sometimes the same feeling may come up more than once. Typically because of a different “Why?” That’s fine just write it down.
Sometimes we may hover with a feeling for awhile before wanting or being able to move on to the next one. That’s perfectly all right, that feeling just needs a little more time to be acknowledged before setting it to the side and moving on to the next feeling.
Sometimes you may not have any feeling come up. That has happened to me more than once in the past. What I do is say to myself, “OK, that feeling is not ready to be seen, or I am not ready to see it . . . that’s good to know.” and I set it aside and move to the next one.
The most important thing to remember is to not be judgmental of yourself for your feelings. They are there and they are valid to you because you are feeling them. There will most likely be baggage contributing to some of your feelings, and that is all great and part of the layers you’re peeling back. It is all good. Digging deep, through it all, is a very introspective approach, and therapeutic, and healing.
One of the things that makes this exercise such a jewel to me is that underneath all the feelings, I found the purity of me. I don’t know if others will experience the same thing, but I do believe that under all those emotions and reasons for the feelings, our true selves exist: pure, beautiful, amazing, powerful, undimmed, and beyond description. So peel away, be patient, enjoy the comfort of being able to feel your feelings and love yourself fully and unconditionally no matter what you are feeling. There is a reason you have your feelings, and you can be a comfort to yourself, but your feelings are not you. You are underneath all the feelings, at the core. YOU are truly amazing!
At one time I thought that if I only know who I really was, spiritually, I would be able to handle anything. I have to admit that has not been the case. I still struggle and find myself knocked off balance. I still get depressed at times, always because I fear something. I can say, however, peeling back the feelings and getting the mix separated out, helps me identify what’s really going on. Awareness in an incredible tool.
Thanks for letting me share, and I hope you can try this for yourself!

The Shelly-Melly Diet . . . or the Melly-Shelly Diet

My daughter Melanie and I invented a diet challenge and there are only four simple rules:

  1. Eat no gluten or processed sugar
  2. Eat 6 cups veggies daily
  3. Exercise a minimum of 1/2 hour, three times per week
  4. Get enough rest at night and rest when you are tired or stressed instead of eating

By following the rules we earn “stars” or points toward our challenge.

  • Each day we eat no gluten or processed sugar, we earn a star.  The only exception is honey or real maple syrup which are OK.
  • Each day we eat 6 cups veggies we earn a star.
  • Each day we exercise we get a star.  Once we have exercised for the minimum of three days that week, we get an extra 3 stars.
  • Resting is something we decided would not earn stars, but a rule to follow which is very helpful toward weight loss.

There are two ways to earn a reward: either through the earning of stars, or through weight loss.  At the end of each month of the challenge, the one with the most stars is treated to something by the other . . . it could be going out to eat, or to a movie, or to an article of clothing, or what ever we decide; but not very expensive necessarily.  The weight loss prize is a bit bigger . . . the one to lose a certain amount of weight (each person must be aiming for the same amount of weight loss for each challenge) first gets treated by the other to a new outfit to wear, up to a certain amount of money determined by the participants.

When we began this, my sister Cheryl jumped into the challenge to lose a couple pounds and eat a more healthy diet.  We are having fun with this and keeping in close touch with each other to help each other stay on the path of weight loss, because we want to see each other succeed as much as we want to succeed ourselves.

Once we lose the weight we want to lose, we are going to continue on this diet challenge to maintain our ideal weights and continue to have fun competitions for prizes!

Of course there are ways to eat enough high calorie foods to gain weight, even on this diet, but our desire is to lose weight and win the competition so we do not work to find ways around the purpose of the diet, we work toward weight loss and success!

You may know someone who would like to enter into a challenge like this with you, to make your journey more fun and rewarding!  Feel free to copy us if you like what we’re doing, or create something unique just for your needs.  Most of all, have fun with your goals and the prizes you set up, and I believe you will enjoy your process to success a whole lot more.

We Got a Horse Trailer!

I’m so excited, we finally got a horse trailer so we can ride our horses at the beautiful parks and horse back riding trails in the area. 

We found a good deal on a used trailer in Washington but it needs a little work. 


After wire brushing the rust with a drill and a wire brush bit, John and I painted a special chemical on the rusty spots that changes the rust into a paintable black surface.


Tomorrow we drop the trailer off, along with the truck to get the brake assist installed on our truck and also to get the broken light fixed on the trailer. 

Yay! It will be great to do more than just fox trot up and down the street ha ha.