Why I know everything is going to be just beautiful…

There’s everything in this photo, and more.

My love, who is going to be the most beautiful dadda I’ve ever known.

My nephew, whose soul is so precious and divine that all I want to do is love and nurture and celebrate him for every single one of his days.

Art and nature and home…

and most of all…

love.

Everything is going to be beautiful.

And it already is.

Creative Goddess Sunday

Hola gorgeous Goddesses!

It’s that day again! Creative Goddess Sunday! Today’s the day I share with you a couple of the creative delights I’ve been making, and you can share yours.

Let the magic happen…

A few weeks ago I was feeling like I wanted to try something new. My two favourite Piscean girls were having birthdays so I decided to make them both a crystal necklace with some of their favourite totems on them.

I meditated as I created them, choosing what magic and energy I wanted to weave into it, picturing how they would feel when they wore it. They are filled with special symbols & crystals & magic for them.

And then I was so beaming with new creative energies that I created a brand for them – Enchanted Horsey designs – and photographed them with my Goddess HomeGirl, Quan Yin. Hee hee! 🙂

Melissa’s Soul Story

And then the lovely Melissa ordered a Deluxe Soul Story custom art to celebrate all the beauty, magnificence and wisdom inside and around her. Gosh that girl is loved! I just adored making this piece with her in all her favourite colours of rainbow jewels & peacock plumes.

In her words

I got the most beautiful email from Melissa when she received it…
*happy, happy sigh*

My beautiful, special, amazing painting has arrived and I just want to hold it and tell myself those things over and over again until I believe that they are true. Thank you for hearing my words and seeing me as I hope to be. I’m not ready to hang my Soul Story yet, I like to be able to have it in whichever room I am in for the time being.
– Melissa

I just adore that. So very, very much.

Passing the creative talking stick

So that’s me, gorgeous creative goddesses!
What’s been boiling in your creative pot lately?

Paint smears & angel hugs,

_____
Get your fill of GoddessGuidebook.com posts when they are published. Sign up to receive GoddessGuidebook.com posts by RSS or email! Hurrah!

Healing Goddess: Creating my own Self-Healing Retreat


On my West Mountain, early morning. Photo by Sone.

Hola gorgeous Goddesses!

Last week, I took off a week from work. I’ve been exhausted from crazy busy-ness in my business over the last few months, and I’d reached that yuck-yuck-yuck place of burnout. I’ve been feeling emotionally drawn it and physically bombed – like I didn’t have any juice left. I’d just finished the Creative Goddess eCourse, I knew I had to make as a space for me to retreat and heal and come back into a cave for a while.

Taking this last week off to rest, heal, recuperate, and return home to myself has been kinda necessary. I had extra leave at work so I could take a week off – even if I couldn’t get a week off, I would have either taken a couple of days of holidays or designated a whole weekend as a retreat. Just knowing that I had this time to drop the ball for a while has been really, really good. I’d been ignoring what I needed for a few months and holding my ball so so tight, and it was starting to hurt. It was time to listen, to have some space to do nothing and be nothing – to just listen and give to myself and my own sweet soul.

Preparing for my retreat

I chose not to go away anywhere for my retreat. I didn’t want to travel, I didn’t need to be anywhere else. I just needed to come home to me. I needed a safe place for me to do that. I needed to get dive-bomb-licked by the puppies, to walk outside in my garden and make herbal potions from it, and to have my love come home to me everyday. So the retreat centre I so deeply needed was right here – my home.

Before my week off, I cleaned up my studio to make it zennishly clean – I cleared out the parts that made me feel overwhelmed. Packed away a lot of things. Cleared out the section of my bookcase that I use as a messy, chaotic To Do list. Put down a beanbag by the window. And it feels really beautiful. My studio – and my bed – became my retreat epicentres.

I didn’t have expectations of my retreat. Just for it to be space. To listen. And breathe. And do whatever I felt like in that moment.

What my retreat ended up looking like

Every morning, I lolled in bed reading every morning for an hour or two. I watched as much or as little tv as I want. I wrote when I wanted to write. I let myself feel whatever came up – shittiness, anger, pain, joy, or sometimes – a little boat of floating gently along. I made healing herbal poultices for myself in the afternoon. Sometimes I meditated. Sometimes I couldn’t be assed. I did nothing much, and everything I wanted. The main focus became this: No Obligation. No Have Tos. No Shoulds. Just Being.

About half way through the retreat, I woke up with a little feeling of hope inside me. Like a tiny little trickle of my juice had come back. I’m felt so very, very glad for that. And I just stayed in that place of Where-I’m-At without pushing or pulling away from it. I wasn’t trying to feel better – and I’m still not. I’m just sitting with the pain, exhaustion and overwhelmness when it comes up. Feeling it, and asking it what it needs. And finding my way home to myself.

So that’s been my retreat. Perfect in a What-Leonie-Needs-Now kind of way.

F U N

I heart some fun time. To finish out my retreat, my dear friend Sone came to visit. (Who, incidentally, has finally heeded my pleas & created her own design company – Scooter Girl Designs. Mother-of-the-Goddess she’s amazing. Hire her before she gets booked out!) My love adores her, Charlie is in besotted soulmate love with her, and she met our darling Angel. (Angel says HIIIII! everyone. She just came in, licked my toes, inspected my keyboard, shredded some collage paper from one of my boxes, then miandered back out. hee hee!)

We ended up doing what we do best. Having miracles and adventures and fun times and silliness and gentleness. Hello mass beading sessions, painting our year’s vision, being stalked by purple dancing lepracauns, magically ending up at an equinox festival, eating cupcakes & raw food delights, being absconded by drunk witches, accidentally ending up in a flute meditation with a shaman, visiting beautiful bookstores, playing in the tunnels of a stone kids castle, singing and dancing on a mass stage to each other, cuddling puppies, making spontaneous visits to our friend’s farm, sitting in the tipi, playing with a tribe of horsies, having the kettle on constant boil for our tea, silly Wii competitions, pulling oracle cards and, as always, just being, talking, sharing, giggling, adventuring, loving. Just the five of us. Me, Sone, Chrissy, Charlie, Angel. It’s all so very, very good. The perfect healing blend of FUN ever.

Continuing the Retreat

So now I want to take that feeling of retreat with me into my everyday life. I do it in small ways – I listen to meditation tapes most days. I take steps quietly and gently. I say no to stuff. I watch how much energy I’ve got, and decide really carefully how much I want to give out. I wear the beads me & Sone made together. I wear a shawl cause I kinda feel monk-ish in a shawl.

And I give myself what I need.

And I think that’s the big one. That’s all I needed to do.

Give myself what I need.

And this weekend?

This weekend is going to be a blast. Because our darling Sone decided one weekend wasn’t enough, and is coming back for Round Two. And the icing on the cupcake is this: My amma-mama is coming. My two favourite Taureans will meet at last! And some time with my mama will be just divine. It’s time to be held.

Passing the Talking Stick

As always, feel free to hold the talking stick and share in the Comments Circle. You can share about your journey, or answer any of these:

What do you need to give yourself?
Can you create a space of retreat for you?
How many stars are there in the sky?
If you were going to make a big basket of your favourite things to take with you on your retreat, what would you take?

Big love, retreats & kindness,

_____
Get your fill of GoddessGuidebook.com posts when they are published. Sign up to receive GoddessGuidebook.com posts by RSS or email! Hurrah!

Goddess Allsorts Day!

Hola gorgeous Goddesses!

It’s that happy day of the week… Goddess Allsorts day!
This is the day I share with you all kinds of scrummy inspiration I find around the place & want to share. Allsorts that don’t make much sense together, but are perfect anyway.

Video: The Graceful No

My beautiful man called me over to his computer earlier this week. “Sit. Watch.” he tells me, his arm reaching over and around my shoulders. I lean into him, and we sit. Listen.

This woman shares about the power of No, and saying it with love, grace, compassion and certainty. Without giving yourself away, and without causing harm. Just No. With love.

What touches my gigglesnort bone.

This site: Dear Old Love. Tiny little love letters to old loves that make me giggle, and occassionally snort.

Temporary favourite for the moment:

My love for you is like pi—irrational, never-ending…

Idea: The Cult of Done Manifesto (or, Perfectionism Thwarted!)

I’m a recovering Perfectionist, and dream sometimes about starting Perfectionists Anonymous. So when I fell upon Bre Pettis’ Done Manifesto, I was all a-*squeeeeeee* with possibilities. This is good. So very good.

And then a little bit of Bly.

My love once found a video of Robert Bly, the poet, running men’s workshops, and speaking of the importance of men returning home to their wild selves. I fell in love with him then. Here’s some of his beautiful words to fall in love with now.

Don’t go outside your house to see flowers. My friend, don’t bother with that excursion. Inside your body there are flowers. One flower has a thousand petals. That will do for a place to sit. Sitting there you will have a glimpse of beauty inside the body and out of it, before gardens and after gardens.
– Robert Bly

Hurrah!

Until next time gorgeous souls… be well and be loved.

You so fine,

_____
Get your fill of GoddessGuidebook.com posts when they are published. Sign up to receive GoddessGuidebook.com posts by RSS or email! Hurrah!

Healing Goddess: How & Why to make a Herbal Poultice

Hola gorgeous Goddesses!

I wanted to share with you all the hows and whys of a gorgeous ancient healing practice I discovered this week. Exciting, no? I completely am 🙂 I’m wedged between two sleeping puppehs, in my studio, with the afternoon light pouring in… ready to type type type about herbal healing. Hurrah!

First, story time!

So a few days before I was booked in for my ultrasound, I was out on our usual Saturday morning breakfast, library & shops tour with my beloved. (I don’t think I’ve mentioned in the last two days how much I adore that man. I really, utterly do.)

*Anywaysies*, we were out in the parking lot between Favourite Breakfast Hangout and Best Library Ever, and I said to Chris:

Hon, I need to find some books about herbs. I just keep getting this idea that I need to, like, warm up a herb, like chamomile or something, and put them in a warm cloth and wrap it over my boobs.

And he says
sounds good
like it’s the most normal thing on the earth for him to hear. (See why I adore him so big? He just thinks all my crazy ideas are perfectly normal.)

Collecting the wisdom

And so we go to the library, and I make him carry back to the car huge armfuls of herbal textbooks.

We get home, open all the curtains for the light to come in, and I curl up on our couch by the windows to do some study. I’ve never really looked into herbs before. I’ve got women sisters who are herbal healer women, and I drink a lot of herbal tea (I probably keep Celestial Seasonings afloat with my purchases of Tension Tamer tea) – but I’ve never really learned much more about them. Until now.

And I’m reading through the tomes (check out the GoddessGuidebook Book Recommendations place for the books), and I find this:

Herbal Poultices

Herbal Poultices are ground herbs that are placed in boiling water, strained, and placed in cotton or muslin. This fabric is then placed over painful areas for healing. Different herbs are used for the different kinds of healing needed.

And I started, and thought.. WTF? That’s exactly what I was thinking of! It’s got a name! It’s called a Poultice! I had to call Chris and read it out to him again.

My head was all aspin with the wonder of it all. I felt like I’d remembered something from a past life as a herbal woman or something. It was completely and utterly magical.

Chamomile

I read up on all the different herbs that can be used in poultices, and couldn’t find any reference to chamomile. Which I really wanted to find – partly because that’s what my intuition was saying, partly because I had a large amount of chamomile tea in the cupboard I could use.

So I ended up searching through a couple of books until I found this:

Chamomile can also be used as a drawing poultice to assist in tumours, cysts and lumps.

And then Leonie did a happy dance.

How I made my poultice

I boiled some water, and in a glass bottle (you can use a jar or bowl – any container is fine) I poured the hot water and some dried chamomile. With poultices you can use fresh or dried – you don’t need as much if it’s dried. I’d love to make a poultice out of fresh herbs sometime, but for now, I went with what I had. And what I had was chamomile tea bags. So I chopped open about ten chamomile tea bags, and poured them into the water, and sloshed them about. I left the bottle for about 10-15 minutes.

Then I went in search of some cloth. All I had was an old shirt that I don’t wear anymore. It wasn’t cotton or muslin, but I just went with what I had coz that’s how I roll ;). I put the shirt over the top of the bottle and used it to strain all the water from the bottle, letting all the wet chamomile fall onto the shirt, which I made into a ball. Then I went and laid down, placed it over my Magnificent Healthy Boobs for about twenty minutes.

Word of caution: Just be careful about the heat. It can be a bit warm, and we don’t want Magnificent Healthy But Slightly Scalded Boobs. When it doubt, let it all hang out in the cool air for a bit.

Otherwise, you can place a hot water bottle over the poultice to keep it warm, as it does lose heat fairly quickly.

Skin on skin poultice action

You can apply the poultice directly onto the skin (with fabric over the top) for greater healing effect. If the herbal mixture contains irritants like mustard though, keep it all in the fabric.

I ended up putting the chamomile (which had turned into a porridge-like mush) directly onto the skin. Chamomile is very mild and soothing for the skin anyway, and I could feel it was having a greater effect with direct contact. Yum!

The results

Obviously, I’m not a doctor. Obviously, this doesn’t constitute medical advice. I don’t want to get all legal disclaimery here.

But this is my experience:
I could feel a difference immediately after applying the poultice. One of my breasts has been swollen and in pain for about a month now, with pangs of sharpness on and off. I’ve only felt glimmers of that since using poultices. When I didn’t poultice both breasts, I could feel the difference afterwards – Magnificent Healthy Poulticed Boob’s tissue was softer, less swollen and felt calmer. Obviously Magnificent Healthy Non-Poulticed Boob was missing out on the warm soothing chamomile healing goodness and was staging a revoke! No fair! Spread the poultice love, lady! So I’ve been much more attentive to poultice both boobs now.

And here’s the thing. I’m the expert on my own body here. And I can categorically say that the lump has gotten smaller and less hard since poulticing. Happy, happy healthy boob days.

And the best-ever side effect: It feels lovely. Deeply nourishing. Nurturing. Like a great act of self-care. It is diiiivine. It’s a healing hot water bottle for the boobs! Hurrah!

I wish…

I wish I’d known about herbal poultices years ago. I wish more women knew about poultices. A lot of the information I found was for women who were breastfeeding – obviously breast health becomes a lot more in focus once they are working horse boobs instead of just show pony boobs (as a breastfeeding friend of mine puts it). It would just be so wonderful for women to know that so much healing is available for us and our bodies in our gardens and in our tea boxes. My boobs have been in pain for a month now – and I had what I needed to heal it in my cupboard. I just didn’t know.

But now I do. And I’m really, really excited about what other herbal healing possibilities are to come from this.

More readings on herbal healing, poultices, and what you can use in poultices:

* Ladies Blend Thyme
* MoonDragon’s Health & Wellness
* Tea Bag Poultices

So much love, healing, Magnificent Healthy Boobs and happiness to you…

_____
Get your fill of GoddessGuidebook.com posts when they are published. Sign up to receive GoddessGuidebook.com posts by RSS or email! Hurrah!