Thursday, December 5, 2019

Me, Myself and I

What's the hardest thing you've ever done? Definitely in my top five is attending the ten day Vipassana silent meditation retreat this past June. It's also one of the BEST things I've ever done for myself.

I've practiced meditation on and off for many years. From Thich Nhat Hanh inspired walking meditations at a solo spiritual retreat in Hawaii to weekly guided meditations & dharma talks led by Tara Brach at the Insight Meditation Community of Washington with up to 250 attendees. But I've never incorporated a consistent daily practice into my life. Until now.

My friend and hairdresser extraordinaire, Mychal, told me about the retreat five or six years ago. I'm always up for challenging myself and growing spiritually, but it just never seemed to fit into my schedule. Until this year.

This is NOT a vacation. This is WORK. This is a HUGE commitment to learn and experience the Vipassana technique. A way of meditation to eradicate suffering. And for me, it was a chance to truly live in the present moment, more connected to myself and others than I've felt in a long time.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019


I am silly. I am giggly. I'm a curvy, curly-headed chick. I'm a daughter, sister, listener, friend. I'm introverted and confident. I'm a writer, number cruncher. I'm a lover of Excel. I am black. I am white. I'm a tree hugger, animal lover. I'm abundant. I am grateful. I'm a dancer, singing off-key. I'm a bit crazy for latte with oat milk. I am spiritual, physical, mental, emotional. I'm sitting still in silence. I'm shouting for what I believe. I am salty. I am sweet. I am joy. I am peace.

I am many puzzle pieces. These are just a few. Sometimes they don't all fit, so then I try on something new. I am many. I am the two most magical words that ever existed: 

I am expansive. I am infinite. I am awareness.
Who are you?

Just Be!

Friday, August 2, 2019

Yeah, you got this!

I've been on this writing journey for longer than I care to admit. It wasn't until 2004 when I rediscovered my love of writing and finally put pen to paper. (Yeah, I'm old school.) Since then I've written five manuscripts (two picture books, two YA and one MG), started many others, and published four short stories.

There are MANY bumps, dips and cracks along this road and the biggest pothole is fear. The fear of the blank page. That you'll never finish the first, second, or sixth draft. The fear that no one will like your writing. That you'll never be published. The fear you'll never get an a book deal...sell a book to anyone other than your mom...get a second book deal...receive positive reviews...never have a full-time writing career... It's enough to make your brain explode.

And this is why I need to get out of my head and back into my heart. There's a LOT I can't control, but what I can do is write, read, and write some more. And I can also celebrate my successes: 

I SIGNED WITH AN AGENT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

As of July 31, 2019, I'm officially represented by Ronald Gerber at Lowenstein Associates!!!

Yes, there will be much more work and many bumps ahead, but for NOW, let me dance with joy, relishing in all the congratulations from family & friends and in the glow of this major writing milestone.

Don't ever give up on yourself and your dreams. Persistence is key. Yeah, you got this!

Write on!

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Live with Purpose

I'm an introvert. I do love the company of friends, but I prefer one-on-one connection over crowds. And whenever I do put myself out there, much needed alone time to recharge will be required. 

Because I'm not one for attention on myself, I tend to voice my opinion with a familiar audience within a safe space. Sometimes I wish I were more like my friend, Lynn, who puts herself out there - LITERALLY. Not everyone shares her views, but that doesn't stop her from voicing her beliefs about saving Mother Earth and treating all people equally with respect and compassion, even when passersby shout their disagreement and alternative views in not so nice phrases.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Perks of Art

Super cool to randomly see SMART's Oregon Reads Aloud anthology on an Instagram feed. Click the right arrow on the photo to see a better shot of the ORA book.

Thanks for the shout out Perks of Art!

Read on!