Nature and Nurture

Using nature to nurture your soul is a powerful way of self healing.

Sunshine lifts your spirits, the salty ocean cleanses your soul, while the mountains and forests can deeply ground you.

When your feeling out of balance, take yourself out into nature.  Research indicates that nature is a natural healer.  In the past, when people were inpatient in hospitals, part of their recovery involved sitting outside on the hospital grounds, surrounded by trees, green grass, water or rolling hills.  Nature has a natural way of healing the body, mind and spirit.

If you can’t get outside, bring life indoors.  Surround yourself with potted plants or even create a small rock garden, and open the windows.  Sunshine not only provides our bodies with necessary vitamin D, but also alleviates depression symptoms.

Nature also heals through the use of holistic or natural medicines.  In the past, plants were medicine.  Always check with a professional before consuming natural remedies as with any kind of pharmaceutical medication, you have to be careful.

Remember to nurture your body, mind and spirit, when facing a difficult problem or issue.  We often look to others to nurture us in times of need, but we must always begin with ourselves.  Nurture yourself through nature and feel the power of its healing energies.

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Hiking the Hoodoos

 

The Best of Utah – May, 2017

If your looking to meet new people, go hiking in beautiful remote places, and have a passion for travel and adventure, I encourage you to experience Zion, Bryce Canyon, and Escalante.

I recently booked a one week camping trip through Wildland Trekking, and joined eight strangers on a trip to beautiful Utah, where we spent our days hiking, exploring exotic landscapes, climbing the worlds largest sandstone canyons, and learning about each other.  I was lucky to find such an interesting and diverse group of people to spend the week with.

What’s great about going on an adventure with a group of strangers is that its always an interesting experience.  Together we hiked, laughed, explored, ate our meals outside ontop of rock canyons, at the bottom of a waterfall and in a petrified forest.

In the past, I would never have thought about joining a group of strangers on a trip, but after having experienced two hiking and camping trips with strangers, I’m hooked!  There is nothing better than sharing your experience with people who have the same love and passion for adventure and travel that you do!

I’m already planning my next trip and excited to meet the next group of people!  Death Valley or the Great Northwest, here I come!

 

 

“End of Trail”

This photo was taken on top of Cathedral Rock in Sedona, Arizona where I originally started out on the bottom as a solo traveler.  As it often happens in life, I met another traveler who had her own story to tell, and part of her journey was to lead me to the top of the Cathedral Rock.  With my love for nature and adventure, we set out on a day’s hiking trip, learning about each other’s lives, knowing we would never meet again.

The journey to the “End of Trail”, was an adventure of courage, guidance and self exploration.  After climbing for several hours, I eventually reached the end of the trail.  I could not go any further.  I looked out over the beautiful Arizona landscape, feeling the grounding rock beneath my feet.  As I sat on top of Cathedral Rock, I reflected on own my path, both literally and symbolically.  Had I reached the “End of the Trail” in other areas of my life?

At different times in our lives, we get to the end of the trail and have to begin a new path or a new journey.  Part of my passion is to help others through their own transitions, putting closure on endings and helping people to begin to explore new journey’s.  Life continually takes us to the “End of trail”, and it is during these times that we can look back, reflect, be thankful, and search for the next pathway that calls to our spirit.  A new inner journey calls, whether it be a solo journey or a shared group experience… There are always new paths to explore, new mountains to climb and people to help guide us along the way.

The Healing Labynrith

I created the Healing Labyrinth as a sacred place for the community, a place to go when you are in search of spiritual direction, clarity of mind, and peace of heart.

Even in the winter, the path is visible.  Often in our daily lives, we become lost or directionless, but if you continue to seek, you will see that your path is there, although it may be a solitary path or a path where many others have not yet traveled, it is your path alone to walk upon.

Join me, as we walk the labyrinth together and travel through your sacred solo journey in search of meaning, healing and joy.  Life is to be celebrated in each and every step.

 

Marco Island – A Place Where Sea Meets Spirit

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Do you dream of unspoiled tropical beaches and miles of endless sand and sea?  Hidden amongst modern condominiums and high-rise hotels on Marco Island, Florida, lies a hidden treasure called Tigertail Beach.  Secluded from urban America and detached from life stressors, this beautiful secluded beach is where heaven meets sea.

When you arrive, you can either walk along the vast white sandy beach, or you can cross the lagoon, avoiding condo’s and hotels, wading waist deep through warm salty waters, finding yourself amongst southern Florida’s unique wildlife including; tropical fish, ospreys, egrets and dolphins.  After you cross the lagoon you walk through a sandy trail that leads you out to the ocean front, where you can walk and explore three miles of beautiful wild, unspoiled natural beach where you will find yourself one with nature.

I travel to Marco Island every year and spend days walking the beach on Tigertail.  It is a place that rejuvenates my body, mind and soul.  I walk for hours as I only pass a few other explores along the way.  I swim in the salty warm ocean waters and sit on the sun blessed crystal sands becoming immersed in the land and sea as I totally forget my worries and cares.

I know most people go to Florida for the big theme parks or for the many popular beaches it offers, but Tigertail Beach is for those who seek to find nature in its rawest and most natural form, and for those who are also seeking a connection within through the power of nature.

Since my first visit, Tigertail has become a part of my soul, a place I return to year after year as part of my personal spiritual pilgrimage, a place where I reconnect, be still, and heal.

Tiger tail is truly a sacred place for the spiritual seeker.

The Psychology of Fun

When was the last time you played?  Play is not only for kids, but is just as important for adults.  Play has many physical and mental health benefits.  Research indicates that play:

  • Relieves stress and depression symptoms by releasing endorphins that make you feel good
  • Builds connections with others through sharing fun and laughter.  Play can also alleviate stressful situations during awkward or new introductions.  Team building activities in business or social situations can break the ice and make everyone feel more relaxed
  • Improves brain function through challenging activities that require thinking or problem solving
  • Promotes creative thinking by stimulating your brain and imagination
  • Increases your energy level and immune system, building resistance to illness

There are many forms of play and it doesn’t matter which one you participate in, but what’s important is that you actually schedule play into part of your day.  You can play with your kids, your partner or your cat, it will not only benefit you, but will benefit them as well.

What do you do to have fun?  What makes you laugh and makes you feel good?  Whatever it is, go do it! Healthy, happy people, have a good balance in life.  Play is an integral part of life.  Now go have some fun!

 

 

 

Dr. Garlic

Maplewood Gardens

Dave is known as the “Garlic Man”, or “Dr. Garlic”, in the Stevens Point Farmer’s Market and his certified naturally grown organic garlic is, “beyond organic”. Dave explains that he rejects USDA organic’s guidelines and doesn’t use anything unnatural. He has been growing garlic and other veggies for over 33 years. Dave said he didn’t set out to grow garlic, but that, “Garlic found me”. He actually builds the soil, not using any pesticides, which often kill beneficial insects, and claims to have the “purest” soil around.

Dave grows and sells a variety of garlics including Montana Giant, Georgian Fire, Persian Star, Killarney Red, Music, Chesnok Red, Romanian Red, and Georgian Crystal, all which have a distinct and unique flavor. People come from miles around to buy his garlic. Garlic is known as one of the world’s healthiest foods. Health benefits include being, anti-flammatory, antibacterial, cancer prevention, can reduce blood pressure, prevent colds, improve bone health and most recent research says it includes antioxidants that may help prevent Alzheimers and dementia.

Maplewood Garden’s is a division of Whistling Candleman Enterprises. Dave has been making pure maple syrup for over 44 years. His label was self designed and originated many years ago when Dave made and sold candles out west. He used to play a whistle while he sold his candles, once bringing the attention of someone who was so inspired by Dave that he wrote an epic poem titled, “The Song of the Whistling Candlman”.

Dave said that at an early age, he, “Formed the habit of excellence.” and “Explores things seriously”. Dave has also made wine, making golden raspberry wine sweetened with maple syrup, where he grew and cultivated the land, planted the berries and made the maple syrup.

Not only is Dave a gardener but he is also an Artist, Wine Maker and Opera Singer. He is a man of many talents and has lead an interesting and self sufficient life. At the age of almost 74, Dave has worked 90 hours a week for most of the summer. He believes the work is good for him but hopes to slow down some day to return to other passions including singing opera and wood working.

“Don’t just be one thing in life, be many things.”, Dave said, and explained that often times, “People separate themselves from their work”. Dave believes that we all have many skills and talents but often times people get lost focusing on one thing, while other interests or passions get lost along the way. Dave truly inspired me to continue to pursue my many interests and to fully embrace all of them.

Dave is truly one of the most inspiration people I have ever met. He acknowledges his many talents and interests and makes a point of excelling in them. He said he loves the farmer’s market because he gets to meet people and educate them on organic farming. He also shares his passion for healthy food and for sustainable gardening, excelling every inch along the way.

Next time you’re at the farmer’s market on a Saturday morning, stop by Maplewood Gardens for some great garlic, pure maple syrup and words of wisdom about organic gardening or life in general, you won’t be disappointed.

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