Life Lessons and Spring Cleaning

Stonehenge in England was a place where rituals were done in ancient times to welcome the energies of the equinoxes and solstices.


Well, it is that time of year when all of the dreaming pieces that have been incubating during winter are now set to germinate and grow in spring.  I’ve always thought that there was a brilliant sort of wisdom to doing “spring cleaning.”  Today, I experienced that while cleaning my kitchen and clearing out the cupboards in my washroom.  As I cleaned, organized, and recycled, I found myself learning lessons about life and my journey at the present time.

Here’s what I learned:

*Sometimes when there is grimy mess that has been around for a while, you need to scrap the cream cleansers and use an abrasive.  Stuff that has been there a long time is sometimes easier to take off in layers.  If you scrub too hard, you ruin the original form.  If you scrub too gently, it takes forever to remove.  Finding the right pressure and gently teasing it away is sometimes the better option than doing a blitz.  Routing out the patterns and beliefs that don’t serve me works better if I slow down and take my time.  I don’t need to bulldoze through my life and solve all the problems at once.

*So I cut myself while washing the kitchen sink.  I asked myself, “What does this mean?”  Well, sometimes what is required is blood, sweat, and tears to bring something new to form.  In short, passion, heart and willingness are needed to bring about a dream.  It was also a reminder not to throw everything out with the kitchen sink.  The things I have learned on my path and the tools from the past have their value still- even if I don’t use them as often as I once did.  Everything contains wisdom and a kernel of truth.

*It can be harrowing taking old stuff out of its little hiding places (closets, under beds, hidden drawers).  Seeing all that crap that’s accumulated over time can be overwhelming at best.  It can be hard to know where to start with it all.  Putting all the stuff into piles is helpful so you can see what is there.  So is taking your time going through the piles.  Trying to do them all in one go can be energy draining.  Sorting through things mindfully- recycling, donating, and reorganizing- is healing and energy generating.  Doing life in bite-sized chunks seems to work better for me these days- just taking things one moment at a time.

*Slowing down and listening to your body is essential to avoid energy loss.  Not everything needs to be done in one day.  Taking time to have a cup of coffee, sit in the sun, play with kids and pets, and enjoy a walk in nature in between cleaning is rejuvenating and inspiring.  These things that bring me pleasure feed me and remind me of the wonderful things about being alive in a human body.  They ground me.

*Getting rid of old stuff that no longer serves you makes room for the new to come in.  Trying to bring in a new dream when the tattered bits of the old one still linger all over the place is a little like bringing in new furniture into a house that is filled with old junk.  Where the hell are you gonna put it all?!

*You don’t need as much physical “stuff” (objects, gadgets, thingies) to survive and thrive as you think you do.  Whatever I buy/consume/own takes energy to keep sorting out and carting around with me in life.  Keeping it simple and streamlined by reducing clutter is no different than keeping my only real home (my body) clean.  The less stuff I take on, the less there is to clean and care for.

Don’t get me wrong; I am not under the illusion that the cleaning will ever cease.  I know I will be healing as long as I am still breathing.  And I am OK with that.  And I am excited to see where this next journey will lead me and what I can create in this new space that I’ve cleared for myself.  I am curious to see what will be there in my life to harvest at the end of summer…

A Kid’s Take on Joseph Kony


By now many of you have heard of the Kony 2012 campaign.  If not, I posted the video and a blurb in an earlier post this month called Kony 2012.  Some of you know that I work with kids as a learning consultant.  This week, I came across a discussion between a 6 year old (Gabe) and his mom that I found really poignant.  I asked if I could share it here and they both agreed.  It is written in mom’s voice:
‘For some reason Gabriel was gazing over my shoulder as I was scrolling through facebook and went wild when i scrolled past a video and said he wanted to watch it.  I was just checking something quickly and didn’t want to watch any films and tried my darnedest to “redirect” him but he wouldn’t be denied – he insisted, and so we watched it.   It was the Kony film (!!)  (I hadn’t seen it yet) and he watched every second of it intently.  We had to pause it a few times to discuss things as he was so shocked that he needed me to help him integrate it.   He understood it completely and spent the entire week telling everyone about Kony:  “did you know there is this man in Africa named Joseph Kony who is taking children from their homes and forcing them to shoot other people, sometimes even their own parents!?  Did you know that we can help by putting up posters and wearing bracelets….”  etc.   Conversation afterwards:  “When they find him, they will put him in Jail, right mom?”  me:  “oh yah. or kill him if he’s armed.”  Gabe:  “Will he be in Jail for the rest of his life?”  Me: “almost certainly.”  Gabe:  “His whole LIFE?!  Awwww! Mom, I don’t think it’s jail he needs.  He needs people to remind him of what love is.”  (holy smokes, mom nearly faints).’

Jen on the Radio!

Hiya Folks.

On March 8, 2012, I did an interview on “Authentic Living” on Everyday Spirits blog radio.  Here is the link to the podcast if you want to have a listen:

It was a lot of fun!  Marielle and Bee are such great interviewers and they have a lot of interesting folks on their weekly show.

To check out their site go to:


Kony 2012

KONY 2012 is a film and campaign by Invisible Children that aims to make Joseph Kony famous, not to celebrate him, but to raise support for his arrest and set a precedent for international justice.  This man has been abducting children from their homes, forcing them to kill their parents and join his army where they work with him to abduct, mutilate and force other children into slavery.  The international community has known about this for 20 years and has done nothing to stop it.  This filmmaker has started a movement that is poised to see him arrested by the end of 2012.  Watch the film and go to the website to see what an everyday person like you can do to make a difference.

Wisdom, Truth, and Beauty

A dear friend of mine sent this lovely piece into my inbox today and permitted me to share with a BIG thank you to all the parents out there and the important work you do in raising your children:

“Last June as my daughter was stepping into a transition and preparing to leave the nest I gave her a card telling her what I had learned from her over the18 years and counting since her conception.

Here is one of the things I wrote in that card:

Wisdom truth and beauty are sisters found within.
The deeper I dig into my heart the more I discover my own wisdom truth and beauty.

My wellness is connected to keeping a regular appointment with myself when I can dig into my heart and discover wisdom truth and beauty. I do this by going for longish solitary walks almost every day in which I think clearly and talk to myself …”

~ Lisa Housden