10 Most Popular Posts for 2016

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Top 10 Blog Posts With the Most Views (Culled only from 2016 blog posts)

  1. Dear Meltdown, Meet My Friend Mindfulness
  2. Biggest Little Photographer Arrives – We Did It
  3. Living in a Tiny Home Adventures – Four Months
  4. Photo a Day for 365 Days – Thomas’ One Year Anniversary
  5. The Power and Magic of Connected Parenting
  6. 2016 Chromosome 18 Conference – San Antonio
  7. A Rapturous Dance With Life
  8. The Biggest Little Photographer by Thomas Darnell
  9. The Tao of Letting GoLetting Go Burning Ceremony, and There is More Than One Way (These 3 blog posts had the same amount of views)
  10. A State of Pure Awareness

**LOVE OFFERING** If you find this content helpful, I invite you to toss a tip in the love offering bowl. With oceans of gratitude … Camilla ….

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Top 10 Blog Posts With the Most Views for 2016 (Culled from all blog posts)

  1. Olive Oil as Facial Cleanser and Moisturizer – Oil Cleansing Method
  2. Recipe: No Powdered Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting
  3. Oil Cleansing Method – Update
  4. 17 Easy and Free Ideas on How to Rejuvenate Yourself
  5. Taste the Wind
  6. Dear Meltdown: Meet My Friend Mindfulness
  7. Recipe: Almond Flour Cookies
  8. Living in a Tiny Home Adventures
  9. Biggest Little Photographer Arrives – We Did It
  10. Recipe: Chia Seed Pudding

Top 10 Blog Posts of All Time With the Most Views

  1. Olive Oil as Facial Cleanser and Moisturizer – Oil Cleansing Method
  2. Recipe: Almond Flour Cookies
  3. Recipe: No Powdered Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting
  4. Help Team TLC With A Christmas Miracle
  5. 17 Easy and Free Ideas on How to Rejuvenate Yourself
  6. Oil Cleansing Method – Update
  7. I Wish I Wasn’t an 18p- Girl: Moment of Defeat – Take Two
  8. A Moment of Defeat
  9. Lillian and Being Different Presentation
  10. Creativity and Resourcefulness

Here’s to a 2017 in which we all go within to BE the change we wish to see in the world. BE Love, BE Peace, BE Compassion … We must BE this within in order to experience it without.

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Blessings,

Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

Wonderfully exciting news! My 10 year old son, Thomas Darnell‘s book, Biggest Little Photographer has arrived. Be inspired! Learn more and order here.

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A Rapturous Dance With Life

Lake Mead July 2016 #15

I did it. I did it. I did it.

I drove Team TLC 3,400 miles. Thursday, July 7, 2016 through Saturday, July 16, 2016 I drove 3,400 miles roundtrip to attend the Chromosome 18 Conference – Reno, Nevada to San Antonio, Texas .. 1,700 miles each way. A conference Thomas and Lillian have their hearts set on attending every year. We began attending the C18 Conference in 2009 when it was in Las Vegas and have gone every year since then.

We arrived home at midnight on Saturday, July 16th. I was kind of it out of all day Sunday. Then Monday, I woke up ready to go! By Monday afternoon, every muscle in my body ached and I felt weighted down. I was completely out of it for 4 full days. It took about 7 days before I felt like myself again.

Yet, I DID IT!! … xoxoxo

The plan was to leave at 5:00 am on Thursday, the 7th, so that I could drive as far as possible before darkness fell upon us. I am completely out of my comfort zone driving in the dark in unfamiliar places. I could not get to sleep the night before. I was worried and having anxiety about this trip due to finances, honestly, not even having enough to cover the trip.

Yet, I know how deeply important this conference is to Thomas and Lillian. Each for their own reasons. Thomas is the sibling to a sister who has a chromosome deletion. He has, and is, developing deep friendships with the other siblings his age and being mentored by the older siblings.

Lillian’s friends are her peers that she has connected with through this conference. She communicates with some of them all throughout the year. When one texts, blogs, post on Facebook and Instagram, emails, chats on Facebook, or uses skype; the spoken word is not needed.

In our world of verbal communication difficulties, social media has helped create a world that would not exist for Lillian and one where she has true friends. She has no local friends, yet she has friends all over the United States and the world … As far away as Tasmania, Australia.

C18 Trip July 2016 #17

After having about 3 hours sleep, I could not seem to get ready as I was overwhelmed with the enormity of this trip. I had an adult meltdown which delayed our departure. We were finally on our way at 7:00 am; two hours later than I had planned.

There was much excitement as we began the road trip. Lots of talking, observing the landscape, and silliness. About two hours into the morning, we lost cell phone service due to the rural area we traveled. We were without cell service for the next five or six hours until we reached Las Vegas. During this time, Thomas and Lillian became absorbed in reading books, magazines, or using their computers or phones.

Which left my mind much time to mess with me. I had stepped way out of my comfort zone with this trip. I had never driven this far, much less driven this far being the only one in charge of packing, driving, and navigating. Plus, we had never driven this far as a family. Our max road trip travel time was to the 2015 conference in Salt Lake City; which was about an 8 hour drive from Reno.

Thoughts of us being stranded due to car problems kept entering my mind like a dark storm cloud encroaching on the brightest of days. Thoughts of the lack of finances for this trip took their turn in the dance also. Not to be left out of the dance, thoughts of my insanity at attempting this cut into the dance too. All of this dance to be completed with the veil of anxiety and worry weaving in and out like a breeze blowing through the trees.

Thankfully, I am a student of mindfulness and emotional connection. And, since there was nothing else to do but sit and drive, I took this opportunity to put these practices to work. It was a rapturous dance between being mindful, connecting with emotions, and embracing the fear wanting to dance with me.

This trip proved to be challenging. I had not anticipated this dance with life in all of its flavors and colors in such a way to cause the suffering brought on by my thoughts. It was my goal to have this trip be a learning experience for me of not knowing, not planning, and just going. That’s certainly not for everyone.

Yet, I felt this was important for me. It’s a huge step out of my comfort zone. One step closer to trusting myself, trusting internal messages, and letting go of how it’s supposed to be done. As mentioned earlier, I’ve never driven this far alone … Much less alone with Thomas and Lillian. In addition to driving this far in Rosey, our 15 year old car, with dancing through this trip on less than a shoe string budget and letting go of worry that the string will hold tight.

I had moments where I was so extremely hot and exhausted I had visions of taking an ice bath and moments when I was so tired I was shaking and wondering what in the heck I was doing ….. Yet, I know. I may not know on the surface right now; but deep down, I know why I do what I do.

This was also a dance full of wonderful, bright moments. We shared inspiring comments and tons of love that furthered each one of us. Definitely some amazing growth for all of us happened! WOW!

**LOVE OFFERING** If you find this content helpful, I invite you to toss a tip in the love offering bowl. With oceans of gratitude … Camilla ….

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We had a ball and laughed tons and enjoyed the beautiful landscape as we drove by it. Lillian was being so helpful and encouraging Thursday morning before we left.

Thomas was awesome and inspiring with his comments as we drove the two lane highways in the middle of nowhere in Nevada and Arizona. We saw a huge sign that read, “Nothing” and had a great laugh about that! Just after driving through Boulder City and Hoover dam, Thomas said, “I love it here.” He was so impressed with Lake Mead and said he wanted to live there.

Thomas went on to say that he always has deja vu and he has lived this life before. He said it all seems so familiar. He was incredibly inspired by the beauty that passed before our eyes. He also commented that he wants to buy land and simply let kids play on the land.

On the first day of driving, Lillian got sick to her stomach. We ended up spending about 30 minutes at a gas station bathroom and Thomas was extremely helpful. When we were looking for a place to stay and it kept getting darker and darker, I apologized to them as I had planned on stopping sooner. He said, “When you get a rock in your shoe, just shake it out.”

Rosey did a pretty good job. She had a wee bit of problems getting overheated but that was resolved with turning the air conditioner off while traveling up and down the mountainous areas. I had to give her some oil and coolant on the way there and some oil on the way back home. It’s scorching hot checking oil and fluids in over 100 degree weather!

With an hour and a half to go before we arrived in San Antonio, the epoxy glue I use for the driver side mirror had enough of the heat and was simply melting away! A couple of years ago I bumped the mirror backing out of a covered parking spot. So, for about 20 minutes I was holding the mirror until I could pull over. Bungee cord to the rescue!! Before we headed back home, the hotel gave me duct tape and that worked great for the ride back home.

I feel strongly guided to be establishing a new relationship with myself and the world and to model this for my kids, have them actively participate, and to help them know that there’s more to life and living than traditionally meets the eye.

I want them to never lose touch with their true self and to grow into adults knowing their given talents and having a solid and clear courage and conviction in sharing that talent with the world!

I continue to learn so much daily … About me, Thomas and Lillian, others and simply just living and dancing with life! xoxo

C18 Trip July 8 2016 #1

Blessings,
Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

Wonderfully exciting news! We’ve completed the first book trailer for my 10 year old son’s, Thomas Darnell, upcoming book, Biggest Little Photographer. You can learn more and pre-order here.

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Walk With Me: Determination and Serenity

Today’s walk with me theme …

“Continue to walk your path in peace and stick to it with determination and serenity.” ~Camilla

I had just asked Mother Nature what, if any, message there was for me on this particular walk. Right after that I spotted this lovely turtle sunning on a rock.

“In moments of stillness and acute quietness, when the noisy mind is devoid of the chaotic business of thinking, an awareness of another dimension reveals itself. It is a dimension of union; the viewer and that being viewed are one. It is the ending of isolation.” ~ Del Wynn, Ack Poetically (Discovered this beautiful quote in The Curious Nature Guide)

 Walk Turtle June 6 2013
Vintage Lake Turtle June 2016
I help to support my family with my writings. So … there is an Amazon affiliate link in this post. This simply means that if you click through to Amazon for more information about a book, and you buy something, we get a few cents (and it doesn’t cost you anything more than usual). Also, If you benefited from this writing, would you like to toss a tip in the love offering “bucket”? Oceans of gratitude … xoxo
Blessings,

Book Musings: Parenting and Mindfulness and Words

Seven Spiritual Laws for Parents Book

The Seven Spiritual Laws for Parents

I’ve owned this book since 2009 or 2010 and it’s one I re-read and have incorporated into our family discussions.

Here are a few excerpts:

“…. However, a child who was taught from the age of three or four “You are here for a reason” would face a very different future. Such a child would see the search for meaning in life as a natural thing, the spiritual equivalent of learning your ABC’s. There would be no years of postponement, followed by desperate inner turmoil. “Why am I here?” doesn’t have to be a fearsome existential question. It is the most joyful exploration a person can undertake, and we do our children an immense favor by presenting it as such.”

“…. if I had been taught just these seven sentences as a child, my life would have been profoundly different. I would have known something precious and practical at the same time, something that would not have faded as a childhood lesson but would have ripened into mature spiritual understanding year by year.”

Milton's Secret Book 2016

Milton’s Secret

I was so excited to see this book! I’ve been following the making of the movie by Eckhart Tolle. However, I didn’t even know there was a children’s book. It was on display in the children’s book section.

It’s about finding the power of the present moment. A great book for helping kids discover mindfulness! Cannot wait for the movie!!

A River of Words Book 2016

A River of Words – The Story of William Carlos Williams

We learned that William Carlos Williams is considered one of our most influential American poets and his work is read and studied in schools and universities all over the world.

“His most important contribution to American poetry was his focus on everyday objects and the lives of common people. By stripping away unnecessary details, Williams tried to ‘see the thing itself … with great intensity and perception.'”

I was drawn by this last piece .. seeing the thing itself. Plus, the illustrations were completely different. Just loved them!!

I help to support my family with my writings. I share my writings for free for the benefit of others. So … there are Amazon affiliate links in this post. This simply means that if you click through to Amazon for more information about a book, and you end up buying something we get a few cents (and it doesn’t cost you anything more than usual). Also, If you benefited from this writing, would you like to toss a tip in the love offering “bucket”? Oceans of gratitude … xoxo

Blessings,

Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

Did you know I wrote a book? It’s titled “D iz for Different – One Woman’s Journey to Acceptance” and you can read more about it here.

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Is That True

Thursday, April 27, 2016 was National Tell a Story Day! Perfect!!

Team TLC Spring Break Emigrant Gap March 2016

Once upon a time there was a family who called themselves Team TLC to correspond with the first letter of each of their names. T for Thomas, L for Lillian and C for Camilla.

One night, which may have been right about last night, they sat down with one another after dinner and had discussions about a big dream Team Member C has for the family. They discussed if all family members were on board with this dream; including concerns of Team Member T and Team Member L.

They pretty much all agree and are enthusiastic about this dream. Team Member C needed to know whether or not to shelf this as a family adventure or to continue with the inspiration and planning. She now knows to continue researching and to let the fountain of creativity flow freely!

They also discussed how to peacefully co-exist as a team so as to work smoothly together as each person will have a part to play in this dream. As this simply will not work if there is arguing and unkindness between team members.

A little bit later, Team Member T came to Team Member C and said, “Can I tell you something? Lillian and I just had a conversation. One without her interrupting me and without her saying “Why should I care?” That was different.” I suggested that it could be like that more often too and told him, “Congratulations!”

And, they lived happily ever after …

Team TLC Washoe Lake April 2016

The adventure continues …

Such an incredible, amazing, joyful experience to be discussing adventures together for exploring, discovering and learning as a family. Investing in getting everyone’s input about the dream that I have for us. Love, Love, Love ….

May you take the opportunity to “look” at the things you’ve always told yourself simply were not possible or were not even something you thought about as that’s not how it’s supposed to be done … and ask “Is that true?” ….

Sometimes we don’t even know we are telling ourselves this as it’s hiding so deeply. Once we begin to practice being quiet, mindful, connecting with emotions, and connecting with nature we are more easily able to catch these sneaky thoughts. We are able to allow a new way of thinking and doing. xoxo

Blessings,

Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

Did you know I wrote a book? It’s titled “D iz for Different – One Woman’s Journey to Acceptance” and you can read more about it here.

Latest Articles:

Go here to subscribe to my blog to ensure you receive new posts delivered straight to your inbox! Right here!

Surrender to the Moment

“Always say ‘yes’ to the present moment… Surrender to what is. Say ‘yes’ to life – and see how life starts suddenly working for you rather than against you.” ~Eckhart Tolle

Thomas at Lake April 2016

One lesson I continue to get the opportunity to master is that of surrendering to the moment, to life circumstances. When I continue to say “no” to what’s happening and not want to be where I am or experiencing what I’m experiencing, it brings on the stress, the impatience, and un-lovely thoughts.

When I embrace where I am, I feel spaciousness and deep peace. By surrendering I do not mean resigning to the story through which I interpret the situation and the “why is this happening to me”.

I am extremely blessed and grateful to have learned the skills to shift this deep-seated mental habit. Skills such as mindfulness and emotional connection. By no means do I have this perfected, yet it gets easier and easier not to label situations as good or bad.

“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.” ~Buddha

For anyone who needs this …. I send you much love and encouragement as you find the way to your own deep peace …

Let me know how I can help. There are many mindfulness and emotional connection articles on my blog with specific steps I have used. If you’d like to schedule a “Coffee Chat Connection” or “Walk With Me”, go here. xoxo

Camilla at Damonte Ranch Trail Fall 2015

Blessings,

Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

Did you know I wrote a book? It’s titled “D iz for Different – One Woman’s Journey to Acceptance” and you can read more about it here.

Latest Articles:

Go here to subscribe to my blog to ensure you receive new posts delivered straight to your inbox! Right here!

Listen to Your Heart

“Listen to your heart. It knows everything.” ~Paul Coelho

Heart Shaped Leaf

I feel it’s important that we begin to listen to inner nudges, our gut, our heart, instincts, whatever word you use to describe that inner push. There is a reason we are being moved and listening can change our life for the better.

It may not seem that way initially. Yet, listening to our heart shines the light and leads us out of darkness. That infinite and ever present light is shined only after we greet, embrace, and connect with uncomfortable emotions.

I also feel it’s important that we openly talk with and teach our kids about mindfulness and emotions and what to do with them. Letting them know it’s okay to feel these emotions, yet we don’t want to let them soak into us and fester. We want to meet them with love and curiosity. We absolutely don’t want to resist them as they will grow in magnitude and intensity.

Some of us had parents who taught us these things without all the fancy names. Some of us didn’t. And some of us had parents who taught us and we simply forgot! I feel our children already know these things when they are infants and toddlers. When they go out into the world, many of the messages they receive are the opposite of or do not support emotional connection and BEing mindful.

So they begin to leave behind what they know in their heart. Or worded differently, they close it in their heart where it stays, ready to be let loose by those in their life who will share and mentor this way of life for them.

___________________________________________________________________________

What if I’m Selfish?

I had been having the urge to soak in an epsom salt infused tub of warm water for at least 4 days. I finally listened. My body was not moving any further until I did. I felt so heavy and dazed.

After dinner, I got everything ready .. Water running with loads of epsom salt, Himalayan salt votive, palo santo, just the right music wafting in from the living room, door cracked a bit, and darkness.

The minute my feet touched the water, my body exhaled a wave of thanks. I sat in pure bliss for about 30 minutes. It felt as if the weight had lifted and as the water drained so did whatever I had shed. As the water was draining, I instinctively rinsed myself with soothing hot water to ensure getting every bit of it rinsed.

This felt truly miraculous. I felt like a different person when I exited the bathroom. I was calm, focused, and centered …. and, within about 15 minutes …. my 10 year old son, Thomas, became emotionally distraught …

My very first thought was to thank myself for listening to the call to become calm and centered. I was in the exact perfect place to help Thomas through the emotions he was experiencing.

(Note: I have permission from Thomas and Lillian to share this.)

He and his 14 year old sister, Lillian, had been teasing and arguing with one other. He is struggling with harboring jealous emotions towards her. I’m sure this is nothing new with siblings of special needs children. At some point, they are bound to think the scales are tipped in their siblings favor way too much. And that the sibling gets let off the hook too often and receives different (and better) treatment at times.

He wasn’t understanding why Lillian has so many friends and friends of mine who think she is a wonderful, talented person. When behind the scenes, she can be so incredibly nasty to him and me, with the meltdowns she experiences.

For some reason he was feeling like people thought he was selfish and no one wanted to be his friend. He asked, “How come she has friends, with as unkind as she can be and I don’t?”

Without even realizing it, I handed this over to my heart as the words flowed calmly and lovingly from my mouth without the interference of my mind.

We spent an hour talking. I can’t remember all that was said. Here is what I do remember. I have added a bit more to my responses for clarification … as Thomas already knows where I’m coming from …..

Thomas: “What if I feel selfish?”

Me: If you feel you have wronged someone, apologize to them. Then, apologize to yourself. It’s very important that you apologize to yourself also. Do your best not to judge yourself. If you feel judgmental about yourself, accept this. Then, accept the feelings that it brings forth. Physically feel and accept these feelings with love and curiosity and they will eventually fade and so will judgment.

Thomas: What if they don’t accept my apology and tell me off?

Me: You cannot control what others do with kindness, gifts, or words you share with them. It is something of their own to work out if they do not accept.

Thomas: But, that doesn’t make it feel any better. I would still feel sad (or bad) about it.

Me: Yes, and that’s okay. You don’t want to push that away. Feel the sadness. Feel it in your body. Just don’t let it move in and stay. At some point it will lift, as long as you continue to not resist the feeling and continue to feel it in your body.

Thomas: What if I am selfish?

Me: The most important words that will ever come out of your mouth or be in your thoughts are “I AM” and what you choose to follow “I AM” with. For, whatever you add to this statement will be your reality.

Me: This is one reason I make it a point to say and feel, “I am Love,” so often. This is why we have a different word for every day to describe ourselves and our day. “I am awesome, I am incredible, I am extraordinary, I am fabulous.” We already say enough negative, judgmental words to ourself.

Thomas: Why does Lillian continue to have friends and people thinking she’s wonderful with how unkind she can be?

Me: What would you have them do? Throw her out? Throw her to the side? We must know that a person’s behavior is not their true self. Their true self is kindness and love. We see that part of Lillian too. It’s there.

I reminded him of our “Letting it Go” Burning Ceremony a while back and to remember what Lillian wrote on her pieces of paper. She wants to release it. That is the true Lillian.

Me: We do not stop loving someone because they are sharing unkind or rude behavior with us. One thing that I know for certain. Every single human being, every single one of us … wants the same underneath it all.

And this want is universal. We ALL want joy and love. That is our bond. Some of us are simply stuck. Some more so than others. I feel we should help those who are stuck. Help them to find their own way to happiness. The way where they harm no other, yet are true to their own self.

This does not mean that we excuse someone’s unkind behavior or that we continue to be around or with that person if they are completely disconnected from their true self.

Me: As long as you are being your true self, living a heart-centered life, not harming others, and sharing loving kindness in your own unique way; you will have happiness.

We don’t want to concern ourselves with what others think of what we do, say, or have. If they care for and are concerned about us however, we do want to listen with an open heart.

Me: There will be those who consider this selfish. It is not selfish to live a heart-centered life and share your unique and given talents with others. It benefits everyone when each of us chooses to live in this way.

Me: It can be a hard habit to break, letting ourselves become overwhelmed with worry, anxiety and fear of what others think of us. Yet, what they think of us, is their own “stuff” to deal with.

Me: There are really only two emotions. Love and fear. Jealousy stems from fear. Fear that someone else is getting or having more than you. Fear that someone else is having a happier experience than you.

Me: I am sharing all of this with you as a 46 year old woman who still works on releasing these unhealthy thoughts. I have come a long way. I am not perfect. No one is. Yet, I’m a lot better than I used to be!

Me: I don’t remember having any of the adults around me talk to me about these kinds of things. However, I do remember both of my grandmother’s attitudes of not being concerned with what others think. That has always stuck with me and I admired both of them for their attitude.

Me: Although I am grateful to have some of this attitude become a part of me, I am also grateful that I softened it with my own touch. They both grew up in hard times. Mammaw Downs was a sharecropper. She had to leave school in the 2nd grade to help her family as her mom had died.

Me: I still compare myself to others. I still let myself get fearful about what others think about what I do or say. I still judge myself for having not accomplished or achieved what others have in the same amount of time or less time.

Yet, the difference is that now I recognize when I’m doing this. And I use emotional connection, practicing mindfulness, and spirituality to greet and process these emotions.

Thomas: You say judgmental things to me sometimes and tell me I’m doing things wrong.

Me: I know I do. I am not perfect and I need your help. I want you to let me know when I have done this. Most times I try to reflect before I say things to you, yet that doesn’t always happen.

Afterwards we hugged and snuggled … and … moved forward.

Note: I know this can be a confusing topic to discuss with our kids. For that reason, I always give an example from my own experiences to help them understand what I’m talking about.

Blessings,

Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

Did you know I wrote a book? It’s titled “D iz for Different – One Woman’s Journey to Acceptance” and you can read more about it here.

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Getting To The Bottom Of Grumpiness

“Go to Nature’s School – the one true university.” ~John Muir

(Here’s one to share my sense of humor with you. I may not share it much in my writings, yet I attempt to bring humor into every single day. For me, humor is the ointment that soothes the rawness of life …. )

One Sunday not too long ago, I was in a downright grumpy mood. Thomas and Lillian had joined in on the grumpiness. The tension and angst in the air was as thick as mud.

I completely disconnected from being mindful or even attempting to connect with this emotion. I ultimately decided to excuse myself and go for a much needed walk to connect with this grumpiness so as to release it.

A mere few minutes after heading out for the walk, I passed by this rock …

As I walked around the lake, my eyes kept catching glimpses of something – over and over again. It’s like I was going to keep seeing it until I truly noticed and the sight of it brought a smile to my face.

It not only brought a smile to my face; I laughed out loud. And, had to take pictures!

What broke the grip of this grumpiness?

Ducks and Their Bottoms. That’s right. Duck bottoms.

As I passed by ducks in the water, I kept thinking, something doesn’t look right. As I got closer I saw that the ducks had their head under the water. When a duck’s head is under water, their back end pops up. All you see is duck feet and duck bottom bobbing along!

I had noticed this in past walks, yet it didn’t move me like it did this time. Plus, it seemed like every single duck I passed had their head under water with their bottom just bopping along!

The picture is blurry as I had to zoom to get close enough. Yet, I think you get the idea.

By the time I walked in the door, I felt I had mostly shed whatever was causing the grumpiness. I entered with a much more joyful and peaceful heart ready to NOT bite any drama hooks dangled in front of me.

So, let’s get to the bottom of this post. 😉

When you know you’ve dug your heels in, you’ve bit into the grumpy (insert whatever negative emotion here) hook and are not going to let go easily; change your scenery, change the environment.

For me, that’s going for walk and being with nature. Being in nature may not have the same effect on you as it does with me. Find the sweet spot that helps you release the grip on that hook.

This is not to say that we push the negativity away. We still attempt to connect with how it feels so as to release it fully. Yet, sometimes this cannot be done in the moment or in the “space” we are within.

Now. Go find some duck bottoms and see if it doesn’t cause you to laugh … or at least smile … xoxo

This post is dedicated to Mother Nature, her beauty, her love, and her helpers!!

The picture of the stone honoring Mother Nature was taken at Rancho San Rafael Park and The Wilbur May Arboretum. Isn’t it interesting that it was donated and dedicated by someone with the initial “C”? And, it’s perfect for this post!

Blessings,

Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

Did you know I wrote a book? It’s titled “D iz for Different – One Woman’s Journey to Acceptance” and you can read more about it here.

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Go here to subscribe to my blog to ensure you receive new posts delivered straight to your inbox! Right here!

Z is for Zigzag

(Excerpt from my book, “D iz for Different – One Woman’s Journey to Acceptance”)

Conventional wisdom says “do it this way, this is the way it’s always been done.” I am the type of person who questions conventional wisdom. I pause to think about whether the way it’s always been done is really the right way for me and my family.

Conventional wisdom says that the best path for Lillian is to attend traditional public school to benefit from what she’s entitled to according to federal laws and what’s established in her IEP. Well, that worked for us through fourth grade, but it doesn’t work now. You see, I simply believe with all my being that this little lady will not follow any conventional route in her life, or in her career. I believe she will be self-employed, and I don’t believe she will reach her full potential staying in a traditional public school. Of course, I will accept whatever career path she chooses, but for now, I choose us to zag instead of zig.

I’m not saying that we should always zag when others zig. But, that we pay attention when something inside us is saying, “not so fast there, find a different way,” or “don’t keep doing that.” We may hear these messages, but dismiss them due to doubt, fear, or laziness. As these messages bounce around in our mind, we find that we have invited another person’s voice telling us we are crazy for thinking that way.

Happy and successful people didn’t get where they are today by making the same choices as the masses. If you take time to study them, you will find there’s something different in the way they think, their attitude, and how they make choices.

One of my kids made a statement once that we are poor. I explained that I don’t agree and here’s why. We may be broke at the moment, but we are not poor. I consider us to be rich because of our relationships with one another, our adventures, and the joy we experience. I believe there’s a fundamental difference between being poor and being broke. Poor vs. rich is all in how you look at it. Being broke is temporarily having no money. Being rich depends on how our attitude and thoughts perceive our reality. How do we measure “rich”?

It is most important to me that I try to not take myself so darn seriously. I fully understand that we have some serious situations to deal with, especially as parents of children with special needs. I’m not advocating that we ignore serious medical conditions. I’m only suggesting that we become aware of our attitudes and thoughts concerning serious matters. Do your best not to dwell in the past, or get stuck in the “why” questions. Accept the present moment for what it is. Really and truly listen to your gut. Listen even if you don’t understand why it’s pushing you in a certain direction.

The bold overriding theme of this entire book is the ability to accept ourselves, listen to our intuition, and live in the present moment. That’s why it is repeated throughout this book. I know I need to be continually reminded of this. I forget. Acceptance, courage, flexibility, and our view of life all comes back to how we think. Our emotions are an expression of our thoughts. Take it slow and have patience with yourself.

Tip for the Journey:

Awake each morning and realize with awe that you have been given a very special, unique gift. You have been given a precious gift of another full twenty four hours to make your own. Twenty-four hours to do with as you choose, to experience joy and happiness, and to share with those around you. I truly believe the more we share joy and happiness, the more it will spread. Every day you get another twenty four hours to work toward your dreams and goals, and another day to enjoy the heck out of while you’re on your journey. I like to refer to this as a Sunrise Gift and no two Sunrise Gifts are the same. You choose the nature of the gift and what you will do with it. Make the most of your Sunrise Gifts.

Heartfuly Inspired,
Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

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Happy Birthday to Me 2016

It’s my birthday month! February 26th will mark the beginning of my 46th year of living, learning, and loving in our beautiful paradise of a world.

I feel moved to celebrate in a different way this month. I am moved to share, give, and to allow myself to receive. Although I’m not in a position to give financially; I do want to honor this inner urge. I can give my time. I can spread loving-kindness and I can show my gratitude for BEing alive!

I have books! During the month of February, I’m offering 2 for the price of 1 for “D iz for Different”. You can email to CamillaDowns (@) gmail (dot) com if you’re interested.

“Sometimes we don’t need advice. Sometimes we don’t even need to talk. Sometimes we just need an authentic and loving hug.” -Me

I’m also planning to give free hugs on Friday, February 26th. I’m not sure of the location or exact time yet. I’ll be accepting hugs too! If you don’t need a hug, you can stop by and give me one! Stay tuned to facebook. I’ll post the time and location as it gets closer. If you don’t use facebook, you can email at the address above.

Lastly, I open my arms wide and face the big, beautiful sky. I say, “I welcome the blessings and answered prayers being sent ……. And, I allow myself to receive with grateful wholeheartedness.”

Happy Birthday to ME!

Blessings,

Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

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