Sunday, June 23, 2013

Absolute Faith

How far would you go to have the life you desire?
We have been told to visualize all the details in the picture of one’s desired future. To make the picture so real and rich and clear that you can literally inhale it, breathe it in and feel it. For a person with a creative nature that is not the hard part. The difficulty is once the feeling is alive in you, to let go of the picture entirely and simply live in that feeling that your imagination generated.  If you want joy act as joy would now!

That is our part of the dance of co-creativity with the universe. Act as if you already have what you say you want.

 And I wonder if this is enough. Is there more I am called to do in my invitation to the world to dance with me and meet me in my heart’s desire, in my calling and purpose? I had left room in my future picture so it wasn’t so full of my little old imagination that the unknown had no space to express itself.  I opened to this idea readily and am still clearing out the old to make room for the new. And…what else? I can feel an inclination to action yet am not sure what that action is.

When I was young every move I made that altered my destiny was a result of bold fearless steps. While I was following my heart tugs I never knew exactly where I was going.  I left being an on air DJ at a classic rock station without a safety net. I was at the top of my profession and turned down offers of money and notoriety in order to pursue my longing to act. Instead of feeling the fear of leaving something successful and certain, I felt excitement. I don’t think I had one thought of trepidation as I launched myself head first into the unknown trusting that my path would open up as I kept doing what I felt called to do. Impractical…perhaps but in retrospect I followed impulse and I regret nothing.

So why does this state of mind seem to get harder as we get older? Do we see the risk of taking chances as somehow more dangerous and fraught with an increased potential of failure? Does our relationship to failure change as we age and we become more nervous about leaping into the unknown because we have experienced numerous crash landings in the past? Do we think our opportunities are limited as if we have used up our dance card? Or the worst case scenario…does believing anything is possible have an expiry date. Best before …

I have been teaching for a personal development company for the past sixteen years and this year will be the first that this won’t be the case. Saying no to another teaching year was not easy. I feel the pull of relationships and my love of teaching and wonder if I am going to regret this decision. And yet I know if I let the fear of regret guide my choice I will be strategizing my life and living a code that is not in alignment with my true nature.

Freedom of expression, creative expansion and boundless possibility are values that are crucial to my well being. This is as true around work choices as it is in relationship. I haven’t compromised yet and am not about to start. I know I can’t start the next chapter of my life by reliving the last one and while life does not have to be perfect to be wonderful, it does have to be moving in the direction of expansion. It has to inspire you. It has to excite you. You have to know your commitment is to live fully. When you know that then waiting for the right time to make a change becomes meaningless. Waiting is actually the very act that perpetuates stagnation. It is your contribution to not living the life you desire.  It’s like sitting at the train station watching trains go by and never getting on.  

Sometimes you just have to dare to jump. You have to trust you will land on your feet. There is no perfect time. There is no perfect place. The leap itself may be the step that ignites the unfolding of one’s destiny. The leap into the unknown is the accelerant.

On your mark…get set…fly….

Branded by faith,

Authentically Yours,


Sunday, June 16, 2013

George and my g-string.

I have a very clear memory of my Mom’s tolerance of her four girls’ kiss marks all over the television screen after the Beatles performed on the Ed Sullivan Show. We were all afflicted with Beatlemania and couldn’t get enough of them.  My first 45 purchase was “She Loves You”.  I’m amazed it didn’t disintegrate we played it so much.  We would put wigs on, and use our ukuleles and badminton rackets for guitars, and play endlessly together.  We put on concerts for Mom and Dad after dinner on Saturday nights. My ever-so-creative Mom even iced my youngest sister’s birthday cake with The Fab Four – it was adorable.

I was love struck with George Harrison. While Paul was clearly the favourite with the rest of them, I was mad for George. I carried his picture in my pencil case and hoped that he would be in my dreams every night. Looking back on that time, I realize it was probably my first sensation of what it felt like to be in love.  I want to believe that I can experience that again in this lifetime.

Roll forward almost half a century… George comes back into my life in a number different ways… my roomie and I decide to watch Martin Scorsese’s Living in the Material World, a documentary of George’s life. It re-ignites an innocent, delicious, and youthful emotion.  I feel alive and timeless and in love all over again. He compiles two George Harrison CDs as a gift, acknowledging my newly-rediscovered delight.

I am chatting with a friend of mine who has an historic collection of guitars.  Every one of them has a story and I am particularly fascinated to find out that George had played one of them while he was living in Maui. 

That guitar is now on loan to me so I can savour its resonant tones for myself – immersing myself in the knowledge that George at one time did the exact same thing. It is not a performance guitar so I imagine that I am strumming this beautiful instrument that he once used in more intimate settings, which makes it all that much more personal and meaningful to me.

Okay.  Confession time.  I actually placed the guitar on my bed and slept with it beside me for a couple of nights.  I vaguely recall rolling over and my arm hit a string. The sound must have resonated through the walls of our tiny cottage because later, my roomie asked if I had strummed just one note in the middle of the night. I said I had accidently, but in truth, there was a strident and intentional quality about that note that brought that first feeling of being in love right into present time. It was as though it was meant to ring out in the night to remind me that love never goes away.

Note to self… I can have that feeling of being in love whenever I choose.  I don’t have to wait for it to prove its existence physically.

When it does actually materialize in the form of a life partner, and should we decide to marry, you can bet that George will be there – or his guitar at least – and one of his love songs will be a part of the celebration.

I’m such a hopeful romantic.

Branded by George,

Love Buns.

P.S.  We can’t let this one go by without including one of my faves… sung by George and written by The Everly Brothers.  I love this song.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

A Breeze of Space

I know I am a little late for spring cleaning but hey, our summer has been procrastinating and so have I.  Or at least that’s what I told myself. Truly the task simply seemed too daunting.  This weekend, with Buns leading the charge, we tackled my guest room.
Frightening, overwhelming and I never could have done it on my own. I know I would have slumped to the floor, covered my face with my hands and shaking my head whined in a melodramatic impression of Camille, I can’t, I simply can’t.

With Buns taking charge, encouraging me to take focused baby steps and only look at one thing at a time, we began. The piles grew and spread down the stairs, into my living room and finally out the front door. I met my inner hoarder. I think we all have one it’s just the flavor of what we hold onto that varies from person to person.

For me it was all about the spoken word…books to be precise. Unless I am giving the book away to someone who will love it, I feel duty bound to give it lodging until such time as this person appears. That’s a lot of waiting. That’s a lot of books.  And my need to preserve learning extends to every paper I have ever written, every light bulb moment scribbled on a napkin when inspiration struck while at some late night bistro, any information that I have collected that I just knew would be helpful for someone… someday.

 In the explosion of chaotic dismantling I find a huge file of correspondence from my ex love. It was behind my dresser right beside my bed!!! Oh my! Just a little contradictory I would say. Feng Shui love altar in one corner to invite a new amour into my life and a trove of love laden words from the past nestled by my pillow.

 I told myself that I was keeping it in case I wanted to write a novel one day. Mmm…maybe …but it was the good in goodbye that really had me hooked. He shared his heart on paper and I was still holding it. His words spoke of a love so rich and sweet that in retrospect I realize I have never allowed a man to touch me so deeply.

Was I loved well?   No. It was volatile and at times painful.  

Deeply…ahhh yes!  I recognized his soul and it felt like he knew mine.

Memories can be tricky.  I do very well letting go of the bad ones, it’s the stellar extraordinary moments that I hold onto. And yet love doesn’t want to be confined, not in a picture frame or a box, no matter how pretty the ribbon that dresses it up.  Holding on to the past leaves no space for the universe to enter and surprise you in the present.  It seems only logical that we need to empty in order to fill and my nurturing these memories only limited my opening to the future.
I really let it land inside me…holding onto to something, even if it was good may be the reason I don’t have something better.

The calling to let go translates on many levels. Trusting that the books will find new homes on their own. Trusting that I can accept the love in my past story and still live in the love of today.  It is what I cultivate in this moment that will invite future connection.

I give myself a time line and a promise to create a ritual of letting go. When Buns and I have talked of travel to Italy, to the Amalfi Coast I shared how covering ourselves with words, then diving into the sea, letting the water wash us free and clean could be a perfect ritual for the shedding of the old and embracing the new. 
Perhaps I will cover myself in his name, mixing the salt of tears with the intention to dissolve. Dramatic, yes I know. What can I say? One must be true to one’s nature.

For now I will bask in the current feeling of being loved. Not because of the sentiments of a glorious past love affair but because it is true. And the proof that we are loved is evident every day if one is open to seeing it.

My proof today is having a friend who offers to give up her Saturday to help me clear out debris, lift heavy boxes and champion living unfettered.

Love IS in the air, I just needed to make space to feel it.

Branded by freshness.

Authentically Yours,


Monday, June 3, 2013

Sign, sign, everywhere a sign.

It’s Monday morning and I’m a little late in getting this post to you but I have a great excuse. It was my birthday weekend and I am still basking in the glow of love and laughter.

But let’s back up for a second here.  I also had a great session with my business coach on Friday and part of the discussion was about asking the Universe to give me signs that I’m doing okay.  This is why I love my business coach… we don’t just stick to the bottom line, we delve into all manner of creative business practices.

So interwoven throughout my birthday weekend was a myriad of signs that delighted me.

My day began with a 7:30 a.m. meeting in the driveway, in the rain, with Karen and her 5-year-old son who was dressed as Batman.  We loaded her car with our music gear and headed into town, as we were to be part of the West Vancouver Community Day Parade.  On the way in, Batman and I worked hard to make the clouds move over to the right hand side of the sky so the sun would shine.  We didn’t want anyone to rain on our parade!  It worked.  We hopped on the back of a pick-up truck, plugged in our mics, and sang to the community.  At one point, Karen enlisted the crowd to sing Happy Birthday to me.  That was a pretty cool moment.

On our way back to the car after the parade was over, we walked along the bike path.  Although I don’t have a bike, I said I loved to ride and that I should look for one so we could all go together.

Next it was off on an adventure with my friend Stephanie, who delighted me with a gift bag of lovely items that mean a lot to me. We enjoyed a nourishing lunch at The Naam.  We had meaningful conversation and both of us felt heard and healed by what was expressed.  Part of the dialog was around body image and my current working with that.  I excused myself to use the loo and when I walked in, the graffiti on the paper dispenser read “every body is beautiful”.  Not everybody, every body. 

Then it was back home to get ready for my dinner date.  He was the same handsome young man who I had paraded with earlier that morning.  We met in front of the cabin where he was standing by a bike (with his Mom and a friend).  It had mysteriously appeared up against my garage door with a “free” sign on it.  We were all astounded at how quickly my wish for a bike had been granted. 

Dinner included a decadent cake and as the waiter approached with it, lit up with candles of course, Karen got the packed house to sing Happy Birthday to me.  It was great! And my date held my hand as we walked home.  It was touchingly sweet.

Yesterday was fantastic too… brunch with family and friends at The Flying Pig in Gastown.  Our appetizer was the best French toast I have ever tasted.  Yes.  I said appetizer.  The main event was one of my faves – smoked salmon eggs benny.  I could hardly move after that.

The rest of the day saw me lazing in the sun with my son and his girlfriend.  Then a late-afternoon visit to a nearby patio for a birthday libation.  We had a great time, and talked about things that really matter to us.  Dinner followed, and then I was dropped off back at home, which by then had three fresh bouquets of flowers wafting their fragrances throughout my little nest.

And to top it all off, as I enjoyed a movie with my roomie, a little mosquito buzz-bombed me and I knew Dunc was with me too.

It was a very happy birthday.  Thank you all for your part in it! 

Branded by more love than I can imagine…


P.S.  If you are ever thinking about hiring a business coach, I highly recommend mine.
If you want to eat a healthy vegetarian meal go here:
If you want to thoroughly pig out for brunch go here:
If you want to have an entire restaurant sing to you while you enjoy really creative food try:
And, if you want, like me, to just sit back and savour remembering those sunny days, listen to this: