Feeling for kids and families in Conn…

This verbage is from an on-line chat earlier today that I wrote & the picture is from our Medford Jazz Festival performances a couple years back. I felt it very approperiate after todays horrible events, so I posted it on our MJF Facebook Page. I’m still so upset and have a community performance tonight where I KNOW I’m going to meet people who are grieving…mad…and every other emotion you can think of. Read below and know that my heart is with you …miles away Connecticut, I stand with you, for all our children….and our Nations future.

I’ve worked in the school system for years helping homeless kids, ages infant through college, reach their educational goals. My mother retired as an elementary school teacher and her mother before her. In those years, the three of us have seen a gradual disconnect happen. Fear has been a driving force behind it all. Guns, bow and arrows and raw violence are the possible tools used to express it, but I feel the lessening of human value and general human needs continues to fester. If not guns, poisonings, if not poisoning, violence. If not violence seclusion and utter separation from one another will become our truth. In that truth there is no understanding or respectful value of one another, only grief and pain like that we are all experiencing today. Unless we meet each other halfway and bring communities together–with all our uniqueness–fear/pride will overcome. When I perform tonight with others from the community trying to lift up the hearts of our community members, I have suddenly found myself in a place of absolute dismay and grief, mixed with a feeling of responsibility to reach out to others and try to support-however I am able. What I’ve seen lacking in the school systems & society & clubs/organizations is the inward focus & unconcern for other human beings. I will do my part tonight in helping bring our communities back together & grieve with strangers. Letting people know that everyone has purpose and therefore should be supported and valued. (mental health support services come to mind) Today, I will continue to receive phone calls from scared friends who are parents and simply listen to them. If we listen & work together we will drown out fear. Without fear, we are more secure and stronger as a Nation. Whatever weapon of choice is considered, the person thinking of these types of horrible actions are less likely to attack. I agree Bryce Graves…it’s a productive approach to ask open-ended questions with the goal of reaching absolute truth. If we all take that approach in each of our communities or circles of influences, we’ll get to the heart of the matter and actually make change.

This picture taken at the Medford Jazz Festival in October around 2010…see what I posted at the Facebook Festival Site here.

What do you do when you lose your car? Spa! (Part 2)

Now that you’ve read my repo-prep Part 1, here is what happened the day-of…plus a little fun intro—enjoy! Because it’s just not worth stressin’ over…life happens. Laugh anyway.

Why mope around and sulk? Why allow feelings of negativity, sadness, helpless or failure creep in? You and I both know those choices lower your immune system and invite you to gracefully bow-out of life into the unforgiving sick-bed. NO THANK YOU to that hot mess!

I called the towing company a couple of days before to arrange for the car pick-up, so I made sure to clean out the vehicle and drink lots of water to help calm possible upset nerves or stomach.(see previous post) To avoid mental distractions, I chose not to mention the arrangement to anyone until the day-of, when I let my husband know that today was D-day. In the interim, I had insured he had lots of water too. Also, he’d wanted a colonic, and I knew the day after he’d had his first session, he would be tired or as I like to call it, the “colonic day of rest” would hit, so I’d hoped this would happen the day the towing truck would arrive to take away the car. It did. Let’s just say he was very relaxed…no extra stress was taking my man down! 🙂

As for myself, I was looking forward to an inexpensive DIY spa treatment.

SO…for all of you out there who are singing, “oops I lost my house” or “dang I lost my job” and in my case “frankincense and mir! I’ve lost my holiday-ride!” take this tip from me. Take care of yourself & do it, the old-fashioned way. If you have a partner, be sure to get them in on the spa-action too. Be creative, you’ll both need a bit of TLC mixed in with some of these spa-treatment ideas and moments to relax. Things happen in life, but don’t let it take you down.

p.s. Hugs go a loooooooong way.

This is what I did: (hope you like the pics too)

#1=Work out, more water and more work out! My husband and I hit the gym. (yep, he rallied even after his first ever colonic visit…he’s superman.) Remember: liquids + vitamins.

#2=Let the Spa begin!

  • Time to drain! As a singer, I have to sing even when I can’t talk, so that means I need tricks up my vocal-chord “sleeve” in order to allow the show to go on. One way is this helpful invention called NeilMed Nasel flow, which is a Neti-pot system. I’d had my hubby do this (with our filtered water OF COURSE!) a couple of days before, so he didn’t get run down. Today was my turn and that is how I decided to start my spa treatment session!

No joke...it's awekward, but TOTALLY worth it! Keeps me healthy so I can still sing

Neti-pot love: It’s pretty easy. Boil water in your tea-pot (we have the best water filter ever, but I boil it anyway. It’s more peace of mind and it feels better luke-warm rather than cold water…yuck). Mix the saline solution packet & water in the blue pot. Place spout comfortably in one nostril, tilt head and let it flow! My throat, ears and nose always feel a lot better. I wouldn’t recommend this on a spa-day if you’ve never done it before, but it was a great beginning to my afternoon of treatments for my body-care and needs.

  • After my nose was feeling the saline-neti-pot-love, it was time to focus on my hair. Get the hair prepped for a shiny new start with Baking Soda! I chose really simple DIY Spa treatments. 

Just a spoon full of Baking Soda and drops of filtered water will help the relaxation medician go down!

Hair Paste: Mix together filtered water and Baking soda to create a paste. Put paste all over damp hair, pile hair on top of head and set timer for 20 minutes. Let mixture sit in hair. This is GREAT for removing gunk, dindge & unwanted product build-up! It was kind of messy, but an easy clean up.

  • My hot water was already warmed up from the epi-pot and ready for my face steaming session, so all I needed now was a spoon full of sugar…yum! I quickly (and easily) put together the body & face scrubs. See below.

Brown Sugar, Olive Oil and honey makes the body go wow

Here’s the body scrub: Brown sugar, olive oil & honey. There are MANY DIY scrubs to choose from, but again~I was keeping it simple. I made sure there was a nice balance of brown sugar to olive oil…I like more brown sugar then liquids…and then added a tsp or so of honey. Doesn’t it look glorious?!

Here’s the facial exfoliant (below): Brown sugar and honey. The picture is before they are mixed together (I used my ring finger to mix & apply to my face right before my shower.) Pretty simple huh? I set both mixers off to the side ready for later use. I still had my hair to wait for and I knew exactly what to do while waiting…

Honey and Brown Sugar!

  • Time to steam! To open the pores in my face and get ready for the wonderful sugar exfoliant awaiting me in the bathroom, I used my previously heated water as well as created a relaxing atmosphere. Grab something that takes you to a happy place that can participate somehow visually during your steam session. I chose a hand cockade heat-pad to put my steam bowl on. It was made by my grandmother and was a gift from her. When I saw it, I felt better, so I used it. I put some tranquil music on lightly in the background. I knew I had wonderful goodness waiting for me in the bathroom and my husband was recovering/resting in the bedroom. The kitchen dishes were stacked and ready to be washed later and I was ready to let life go for the next 5-8 minutes.

Hot filtered water, nestagia and let the steam facial begin.

Get Steamed: My grandmothers creme colored heat pad is placed under a clean pan I have. I grabbed some bright and cheery colored cloths to drape over my head and trap the steam in as well as a smaller cloth to dab my face. (choose more soothing colors if you’d like, just pay attention to what you are attracted to…listen!) Place large cloth over and behind head, drape to the sides of bowl while hovering over steamy water. Allow steam to comfortably breeze over face and let outside air in as desired. Breath slowly, calmly and release muscles in face and throat and finally the rest of the body. Clear mind and enjoy.

I took the face steam items to the bathroom with me. Here’s how it went and let me just say, I felt WONDERFUL afterwords.

  1. Mix facial scrub and begin lightly massaging mixture in circular motion on face, being careful of eye area and the tender skin there. My face was damp from the steam, so this process was heavenly. Rinsed off hands & pat dry.
  2. Lightly dry-scrub entire body with a small natural sponge using circular motions. Started at top of feet, up the legs, to the mid-section and ending finally at the upper body. A good dry-scrub helps flex off dry layers of skin as well as stirs the skins’ circulation-pot to get the blood flowing and ready for a nice showered sugar scrub.
  3. Put body scrub in shower, shut-off 20 minute hair timer & started the shower. My face was brown with my scrub, my hair was white with baking soda paste, my nose was draining from its earlier irrigation & I was NOT thinking of my repo. (I bet you forgot just now too huh?!) Time to get in the shower!
  4. Circular motions to help rinse off face, rinsed hair and then used my sugar scrub for the body. I would recommend concentrating on hand and interlaced finger massaging with the scrub and hitting the nails too. Of course be sure to scrub your toes and any rough areas. Scrub it all people!
  5. Rinse well to get all the sticky off!
  6. Pat dry
  7. Drink water & tea

The results?


I’ve never done this before and not only did I feel and see the awesome results for days (so did my husband), but I was relaxed and happy. I didn’t use a bunch of expensive chemicals on myself & I didn’t hurt the environment. I woke up my husband after I had taken care of myself, got him some water and he took care of the dishes for me. Then he enjoyed the sugar scrub too and used it up. Later, he and I went out and picked up my new-to-me used vehicle and when we returned home, the repo-man had come. That was that and THAT was alright with us. The rest of the night was … well spent. 😉

#3. Picked up my new used car from a friends house…making payments and fixing it up now.

#4. Remember…challenges equal opportunity.

Hope this helps you all too.

What to do when you lose your car? Celebrate! (Part 1)

So what do you do when you lose your car???

I made the tough decision to call my auto loan provider and give up my car. What a rough time for folks and I, yet again, joined the ranks of those fighting for their rights to drive, own property and in general enjoy financial stability. I made many creative attempts and raged a big fight to keep my vehicle, but it was not meant to be. It was hello tow-truck driver, good-bye car.  I have to say though, the bank was very happy I called and requested a pick-up date. Apparently, that outreach effort on my part reflects well. Instead of waiting for them to grab your car in the middle of the night, they prefer a customer who is upfront and honest. Making repo-arrangements & honesty actually is the better way to go…finally. They were very nice on the phone too. But boy, did I need some TLC & love, so…I made a quick list of things I wanted to do before the good car was gone.

  1. Run as many errands as possible, which there are way too many to list, but even all those stupid little things that needed to be dropped-off, picked-up or the someday I’ll do that was taken care of…and in a hurry. Here’s your Tupperware mom! Love you!
  2. Get all of my belongings outta there! This sounds like a “duh” thing to say, but have you removed EVERYTHING from your car…I mean EVERYTHING? Even when you think you have, there’s that one thing tucked away in that one corner spot of that part of the car you hardly ever go to or use. BUT, it’s still there and you WILL need it someday, so I triple checked. Even after my 3 check, I was laying in bed and remembered another spot! I almost forgot I had my jumper cables, gloves and other odds & ends tucked in with my spare tire! FEW!
  3. Get plywood cut for sagging mattress…it worked!!! mattress is salvaged for the time being!
  4. Make sure hubby has colonic appointment made before repo is scheduled to happen…I’ll explain this in part 2!
  5. Visit Christmas tree farms because they make me happy. Go back to the farm that was one of the first places my hubby and I went together while dating. Very nostalgic and soothing. We found a 5 ft noble with a defect which made it less spendy. What a surprise! Thank you big trunk…perfect fit. (Oh No … tree base! Picked that up too.)
  6. Decorate tree together and watch a great movie; Finding Forester…I love my man.
  7. Thoughts of a spa day began flitting about in my mind…hummmm….

Enjoy the moments…whatever the ride!

Trees are amazing

Trees are amazing

Nature helps EVERYTHING

Nature helps EVERYTHING (conflicted about them being cut, but … it worked.)

Just walking around beautiful trees lifted our spirits~Before the car was repossessed, we took a deformed 5 ft tree home.