Prayer Stick Earrings

Sticks, staffs, and wands have long been used as tools and symbols of higher forms of communication. A stick, staff, or wand is an antennae. They direct, receive, and channel energies. They are used to draw forth and give expression to the feminine life force, for healing, protection and creation.
— Ted Andrews (Animal Speak)
prayersticks.jpg

I don't have any feathers yet, and all great prayer sticks need a feather. I will be working on that aspect of these Prayer Stick Earrings tomorrow.

Yesterday, I took Sadie outside to pee, and as we turned the corner, we ran into a fledgling Robin baby...he was on the ground and Sadie's chase instincts kicked in. She went after the bird, and the baby took flight all the while Mama bird was swooping both me and Sadie in the mayhem that happened in a split second. 

I couldn't find the baby. Gone... I watched Mama bird twitter back and forth on the roof line of our apartment, crying softly for her baby that took off. 

I stayed outside for 30 minutes, trying to find that baby...and while looking, I could hear Mama tweeting softly, wondering where her baby went to. I felt terrible about the whole episode, and when I feel terrible about something, I try and find the deeper meaning, the higher perspective. 

One of my favorite books on animal symbology is Ted Andrew's Animal Speak: The Spiritual & Magical Powers of Creatures Great & Small.

I immediately went back inside and looked up the meaning for the Robin. It is a territorial bird, often fighting with song for domination of a certain area. I love that...fighting with song, rarely hurting another kinsman. They have learned to settle their differences gallantly. There is a lot to learn there.

And their red breast is connected to Kundalini energy...another subject that I have been pre-occupied about lately as it relates to women going through menopausal change. 

The heat of the Kundalini, I believe, has something to do in a subtle way with a menopausal woman's hot flashes, indicating that great change and new growth is emerging from her lower chakra centers. All the energy required to make a nest for her young ones, to birth and to feed and to protect them--moves up the spine and into the creative wisdom centers of her being.

Many women fight and suppress this...it is uncomfortable for some. For others that understand the importance of radical self-care, the movement of that energy isn't as uncomfortable. 

You are not sick if you are menopausal. You are transitioning into a way of being in the world where flying at a higher altitude allows for more perspective. 

And the Robin's song...I am identifying with that aspect of this bird's energy in a profound way.  I am also trying to sing my own song as it relates to why I do what I do with metal. 

Making jewelry saved me from going crazy while I was in the middle of my own menopausal storm. At the time, I didn't know what was going on with my mind and my body. If you have gone through this transition, you know what I am writing about. 

So many sleepless nights...coupled with crushing fatigue and anxiety; it was a trying time for me and Shayne. I was young when I transitioned, only 42. And we were moving about so much that I didn't have a doctor that knew me or my body. All they wanted to do was prescribe me Xanax. 

I had to get quiet and fully occupy my hands and heart as I journeyed inward, trying to figure out what was happening to me.  

Making jewelry, for me, was all about healing, protection and honoring my intense need to be creative.

I didn't create any little people during this lifetime, but I had that creative impulse, and I yearned to channel the primal urge to create from a deep, inner place into something tangible and hopefully, meaningful, to someone besides myself. 

So back to my Prayer Sticks.

The idea for the Prayer Stick earrings I started making last week just came to me while I was preparing a large order for a new account. I spent a few hours making variations of them, all the while calling them Prayer Sticks in my mind and knowing that it was important to listen to what my hands were trying to communicate to me.

I have enough experience in my creative process to understand that meanings don't come in a linear way. Sometimes the answer comes before the question.

When I came inside yesterday and randomly opened up Animal Speak, my eyes fell onto the definition of a Prayer Stick that I opened up this post with. 

Huh.

Now I know why this tangible idea of the Prayer Stick in metal adornment is important for me to explore. I love that they can be little antennae for the wearer, attracting the feminine life force that is so wise, so receptive. 

It's time to sing my song, establish my territory and prepare for the new growth that is trying to push up through the Spring/Summer soil of now. 

And tomorrow, I am going to fabricate my version of the Robin's feather so that I can add one to these new Prayer Stick earrings. 

I'm making these Prayer Sticks for those that are transitioning in their own way into their wise-woman self. 

Hope you are having a great week...and that you can find the deeper meanings of your everyday experiences for a greater understanding of you.

It's so important...you are what the world needs right now, and my hope is that you can continue to find the courage to sing your song. 

XO!

ART MoB and River Arts District Studio Stroll and Art Sale

This post is going to be a hodge-podge of information and current happenings...I have so much stuff to share that is fairly random, that I think I will just spill it all in one big post!

Last weekend, I traveled up over to Hendersonville, NC and dropped off 32 pairs of earrings to ART MoB, an eclectic art gallery filled with local art. 

I went super simple with my display, and was excited to put my work on my new earring cards. I haven't really blogged about this new addition to my work...my earring cards have some words on the back...

I decided to take the opportunity to spread some of my philosophy to anyone that is interested enough in my work to check out the price. I figure if they don't want to take my earrings home with them, at least they can take a moment in their day to know that they are amazing.

This is my 5-second elevator speech...this is what I want my nieces to take to heart as they continue to individuate into the young women they are turning into.  If I could go back in time and talk to myself at certain stages of my past, these are the words I would use based on who I am right now. 

Price tags are usually about what something is worth...I am hoping to remind others about their own worth when they spend time with me or my work.

This weekend is something called the Spring Studio Stroll and Art Sale in the River Arts District. 

Our studio will be open from 10am - 6pm on May 9 and 10th...and we will be there working on some demonstrations or actually just making jewelry...so feel free to drop by if you are in the area!

I will have about 6o pieces of jewelry available and Jessica has about twice that amount too...

 

As for another announcement...here is the photo of the newest Step by Step Jewelry Magazine tutorial that is now available. This design is one of my older ones, but I always get so many nice remarks about it whenever I have one or two earrings available. 

Again, this design came about because of two things that I didn't intend to do. A long time ago, I bought some small donut beads but was perplexed about what to do with them. I started to wrap them and ran out of wire, so I just shortened it about 3/4 the way through, and ended up liking the way it turned out. 

I have done lots of variations of this wire wrap over the years, and I love how easy it is to vary by using different stones, different gauges of wire, colors of wire...the variety of ways to personalize it are endless. It should be on newsstands now...in the next week or so I will be submitting my final tutorial for the year. It will involve crystals...something I have never used in my work (you know, the faceted kind!). I can't wait to see what I end up doing...as of right now, I haven't got the foggiest clue!

But I trust I will.  

So now that the business stuff is out of the way, I want to share with you something that I just purchased that I love...

They are called SleepPhones...they are for listening to music or guided meditation tapes while you are in bed. They wrap around your head like a headband, and the are so comfortable that you can lay on your side while listening to whatever it is you want to listen to. 

I received mine this week and love them!

I am still reeling from the conference that I went to a couple of weekends ago. I am wading through many of the books and cd's that I bought while I was there, and making some new inner connections that I know are going to improve the quality of my life.

Actually, they have already made a big difference. 

Have a great Mother's Day Weekend...XO!

 

 

Spiritual Retreat: Roy and Joy Martina

On the first evening of the Conference last weekend, there was a group healing meditation that was led by Joy Martina. I perceived from the group that there as a 'buzz' about Joy and her husband Roy, and I was curious as to who they were.

I learned that they were living in Europe, and decided to move to Asheville...right here in my new hometown~

During the meditation that was led by Joy, I uncovered some beliefs that have been quietly affecting my now-space, and I have been working on various aspects of forgiveness all week. 

Joy was wonderful as she lead us all to our own deeper knowings. Her words and manner were timed and pitched just right to allow that deepening to happen in a room full of people. 

Forgiveness of self and others, I believe, is the holy tug-of-war that all of us struggle with to varying degrees, every single day.

I had an illuminating conversation with a good friend about the importance of choosing ourselves  as a form of self-nurturing and why this isn't a 'selfish' act. 

In my conversation, I realized that most often when we choose someone else's desires over our own, that we are not practicing self-care at all if we feel a dissonance about that decision.

That's why it is so important to listen to what your body is saying to you regarding any choices you make during the course of your day.

Our bodies respond instantly to our thoughts...learning how to tune in to those signals can immediately help you form your decision about your next step in the moment the request occurs.

If you are unwell, and someone asks you do something that may set you back in your healing, who's being selfish in the moment if you say no? That is a self-love decision, not a selfish one. 

A fully integrated Self wouldn't ask you do something that might set you back if they are at all aware of your current emotional or physical state of being anyway. 

The person that would ask such a thing of another is the one that is Selfish.  And the reason they are Selfish is because they haven't yet integrated themselves as a full-Self. 

So...back to Joy and Roy. 

The healing meditation, now that I think about it, was one of the most helpful exercises I have done in a long time. It brought to the surface some concepts and beliefs about myself that I was unaware of in a conscious way. 

I decided to follow through with that exercise and purchased Roy's Omega Healing CD, that I listen to each night and every morning before going to bed and rising. 

I have been doing it all week, and yesterday, as I was demonstrating and showing a couple that walked into my studio something I was working on, I had a sense of flow and peace that was new to me. There was a calmness that was unlike anything I have experienced before in a new relating with someone new to me. 

The first video is one where Roy gives some helpful tips on what to do for a more integrated and joyful life.

The second one is on forgiveness that Oprah claims allowed her to climb into a more integrated sense of herSELF.  

I am intrigued about learning more about this power couple, and excited that they live right here. I corresponded with Joy regarding a book they have just released Sleep Your Fat Away, and am impressed with their ideas on using our sub-conscious access and awareness to re-wire ourselves if how we are currently wired is causing numerous shorts. 

I know that has been the case for me.  We are electric beings after all!

  




Spiritual Retreat: Simran Singh

On the first night of the convention, I walked into the bookstore that was set up at the hotel we were staying at and noticed an extraordinarily beautiful woman standing behind a table with her books in front of her. 

She was radiant. She was present.

I perused her books...and decided to wait until I heard her speak before I bought anything. 

Well, the next afternoon, she came up on the stage and just started speaking and singing. There wasn't really an introduction to her presentation, and I had no idea what to expect. 

I was squirming. I was uncomfortable. I didn't know how this was going to end or what the purpose of it was. 

Well, I sat there and became enraptured by her words and her spontaneous eruption into song. I started to lose my feeling of being uncomfortable and started to feel like I was part of the journey instead of an observer of someone else's journey.

Simran is...singular. 

We are all singular...unique...and watching her, listening to her, I was reminded that I, too, have some personal experience regarding paying attention to the signs and messages that Spirit is constantly sending to us in the form of our immediate environment.

Here is an interview Simran gave that is exceptional...enjoy!

Spiritual Retreat: Vincent Genna, MSW, LLC

I want to share with you a shaming experience I had as a small girl in Springfield, Missouri.

I was about four or five years old, I believe. It was my first day in pre-school. My mother was a stay-at-home Mom and I hadn't really been in any institutional setting for children before. 

I didn't know the rules of the joint, if you know what I mean!

So, the teacher leaves, and I do something bad. I don't even remember what it was...but when I did it, the kids in the class started chanting, "Aummmmmmm....you're in trouble....Aummmmmmmmmm.....you're in trouble.......!!!!" over and over again. 

I was terrified and didn't know what it was that I had done. I believe it was something as banal as getting up out of my seat without permission. Whatever it was...I remember being very confused and humiliated. 

It was the first time I had been shamed in public and the feelings associated with that sound of Aum, OM or Ummm.

A few years ago, I started trying to meditate using the OM. I was living in Brevard at the time, but I could not chant OM out loud if I knew someone could possibly hear me. 

I would go to the furthest reaches of our yard in the house I was renting, and try and chant OM, but I would stop after a few tries. I was seriously blocked about this chant...and so I started to just work with it in my jewelry on a periodic basis by stamping it on some of my designs. 

In the last few weeks...OM has become front and center in my work. Until this weekend, I didn't really understand why.

I realized this weekend that my little episode with that sound and shame has never left me, and has most likely been a key reason why I have been so restless regarding finding a hOMe as well as my block against using that sound in my meditations. 

Vincent Genna did a presentation entitled, "Stop Stopping Yourself" and it was phenomenal. It didn't dawn on me until later that day, during a group meditation and healing, that one of my personal core beliefs was stopping me from having a direct route to my higher I AM. 

During the guided meditation, we were asked to go back in time and forgive those that we feel hurt us, and this memory hit me like a ton a bricks. It was then that I put the two things together and felt an enormous sense of relief regarding one of my own personal truths. 

OM or AUM is the universal sound of creation energy. In Christianity, Amen is said after prayer. I believe it is to add to a prayer's strength to reach the ears of God. This sound is used in every major religion.

And...for some reason, little kids 40 years ago used this sound to shame me in that little classroom in Springfield, MO., and I connected that sound to my shame about not knowing what the rules were in order to fit in and not get into trouble, and that I am not smart enough to figure out the rules.

I am not smart. I am not good. I don't know what I am doing.

Going over my life story thus far, I can see myself in a much clearer light. And I am releasing so many childish beliefs that have been running my life like a computer program that is stuck, churning away in the background buried deep in my subconscious files. 

Vincent's program was electrifying and practical. I am not going to go over what he said in any detail, or how to clear these limiting beliefs, because it is his material and he makes his living from it. But I am going to invite you to go to his website and spend about an hour listening to what he has said regarding what he does and why he does it that is for public consumption.

And then I am going to fervently suggest that if you are near any of his seminars or conferences, you do whatever it takes to hear him speak about what is stopping you from understanding why your life, or certain portions of it, no matter what you do, don't work out according to what you think you believe.

My biggest takeaway from his presentation is that your life, in large part, is directed by your inner 5 year-olds beliefs and impressions about the world and how it works. You most likely don't really believe what your adult mind thinks you do. 

Here is the link to his website, specifically his video page. Enjoy...

 

 

 

A Spiritual Retreat Week for You!

Over the weekend, I attended The Coptic Center's  2015 Southern Conference in Johnson City, Tennessee and was blown away by the information I learned from and was exposed to. So much so, that I had to take today off to process it all, and figure out in what ways I plan to implement some of the material into my own life.

I went with a friend of mine, and to be honest, I didn't even know what this conference was going to be about. I have been so busy lately, that I just decided to say yes when my friend asked me to go weeks ago, and figured it would be great to get away with her and that I didn't really need a reason. I trust her judgement and figured it would all work out.

Well...there is something to be said about cultivating friendships that revolve around trust and love...because this weekend was one of those experiences in my life that I know will turn out to be transformational for me. So much so, that yesterday when I arrived home I was buzzing internally so loudly I was sure Shayne could hear it! 

I am not going to write too much about my own feelings regarding what I learned right now, as I am still trying to figure it all out. I am doing that privately in my own handwritten journal. 

However, I would like to share with you the speakers that I was privileged to hear during the conference so that I can have a place to begin as I continue to unwind for myself what it all means, and how to apply it to my own life.

These speakers, and what they had to share, were phenomenal. One thing that I feel that I must share as a takeaway was that we all have something unique to offer the world based on our particular experience of life and our love for it. 

It validated for me in untold ways that there is always room for your voice, speaking your truth, no matter how many people are out there speaking about the same thing. Every one of these speakers were so...themselves. They were brilliant, faceted gemstones in true color. In their color. It was awesome!

I am going to share some things about each speaker that I found compelling on each day this week right here. The first speaker was John VanAuken.  He is a Director of at the Edgar Cayce Foundation, the Association for Research and Enlightenment or (A.R.E.).

Here is a video that I found to be very interesting regarding our soul, Spirit and what the difference is based on the information Edgar Cayce was able to access during his lifetime...hope you enjoy!