Teach Me a Lesson Mr. Manifestation Man

bent spoon

I wanna bend spoons, knock the pendulum off its axis — move things with my mind.  I know you do too.  After realizing that I was unconsciously escaping my body when physical pain erupted, I of course started practicing astral projection CONSCIOUSLY. Wouldn’t you do the same?

Yesterday someone told me that I wasn’t fully me yet. Of course, she was right. After all,  that was yesterday. Yesterday I wasn’t fully me. How could I be? I hadn’t soaked in today yet.

I’m so fully aware that in order  for my life to flow painlessly, I need to align with my purpose. The more I serve you, the more the Universe signs my rent checks, rubs my shoulders and connects me with the loveliest people and experiences  around.  The thing is though – -every day, I learn more about who I am. I expect this will continue. Every day, alignment with my me-est me takes on a deeper meaning.

I’ m not done aligning. And, I’m not bored by it.

I dream my life before it happens. I intend for what I want, and ask  for direction in meditation. And, I am sitting here witnessing how magical it is to get everything I’ve wanted — while I bite my tongue and make sure I’m not dead.

I’m flippin out over how much I’ve learned today alone.  I’m flippin out over the dreams, the conversations, the clients from heaven and the ability to finally let my work flow through me. I asked for it, yes! I guess I worked for it too.

But, the truth is that the REAL stuff happens when I let go. As you can probably tell, my writer’s block has faded.

So, about the astral projection thing…. woah.  I felt myself pull  off from my body and just kind of loom over Dougie.  And, like any mama, I only thought of kissing his cheeks. So, I did that. And the little man wiped off  my astral kiss. Priceless.

I guess what I am getting at here, is that you are perfect today. Just as you are.  Ain’t it cool to be you? What did you learn about yourself today?

What will you teach us tomorrow Mr. Manifestation Man?

The real me is always singing in my head —  so, I will share with you my songy inspirations  until someone says its illegal or boring.

You guys are so rockin’

G

I’m On the Road to Find Out

Wednesday morning at 5 o’clock, as  today began — I brushed away the tinsel of my dreams. I’d just been flying over mountains under angels wings. I heard the voice of God boom a “you’re welcome” as I thanked him for the trip.  I’m on my way.

I thought of my parents, and asked the dream guys to take me to Chicago to see what I could find out.  Were they okay? I landed in a plaza of dreamers on their way to getting what they want. Were you there too?  So many familiar and yet unfamiliar faces.  This song swallowed me.

Every trip begins in my mind first. Every dream coated in music. I saw one who could’ve been the mother side of God. She was a shiny black woman draped in baby blue. I raced toward her and fell  flat on my face. But, she lifted me, and insisted that I trust.  I let go. Into the sunshine.

I’m hugging  the world from the tops of the snowy mountains and bathing in the yellow sun.  And, I won’t wake up til I’m done.

G

365 Books to Bliss: Book 6 — “The Red Tent” By, Anita Diamant

Cover of "The Red Tent: A Novel"
Cover of The Red Tent: A Novel

3 sentences into this book and I shouted to my hubby in the next room– “okay, I’m  not disappointed.”    My son looked at the cover and said —  “Look Mom –it’s you!”  I thought the woman featured on the cover kinda looked like a guy. But, Dougie assured me that she was me. It’s no wonder that after 180 pages, I fell asleep  with my ear crunched into the book  and dreamt of a time when my son was my nephew — and I struggled to get him to remember me as his mother.

“The Red Tent” is the story of Dinah — sister of Joseph (as in Joseph and the Amazing technicolor Dreamcoat, Joseph). It’s biblical fiction in all its flowery language and detail.

Before reading it, I had my own preconceived notions of men with multiple wives, arranged marriages, dowrys, and oppression of the female. Fiction or not — being able to see a female perspective of old testament days was pretty fascinating.

She’s a slow writer, like I am a slow eater — making sure every word is just perfect before spilling  the beans.  Every word is so beautiful, but there’s not a lot of action happening. I got a little bored but only a little. It’s hard for me to read fiction  because I want so much from it. I want crazy words to pop out of the air. I want risks and twists and magic. I want stuff to happen in fiction that you wouldn’t so much want to happen or believe could happen in real life.

I thought about how difficult  it is to edit my own chapters when I love the words, but they simply don’t move the story forward.   Still this book feels like a giant glossy love letter, and if you are a romantic — you will love it.  If it were to be edited  to satisfy my tastes,   it would completely disrupt the flow that fits so perfectly with the era she is writing about.

Perhaps now, I will value the whole “slowing down” thing in my own work, and see where that takes me.

I can’t spoil endings or too much detail, but I will tell you that the red tent is where the women hang. They go there to rest on moon days, to take care of the sick and nurse babies. This is where the women tell secrets and share their stories. Amongst 4 wives, 1 husband and 12 sons– there was only 1 daughter, and she is Dinah — and so Dinah carries the memories of her mother (Leah) and her “mother aunties” (her mother’s sisters and the other wives of Jacob, who was also their cousin).

There is some excitement. You do get to hear Dinah’s version of what happened to her brother Joseph.  And more. But, I won’t spoil it.

Ciao,

G

I’m reading 365 books this year, and that’s a lot.

365 Books to Bliss: Book 4 — “The House on Mango Street” By, Sandra Cisneros

Cover of "The House on Mango Street"
Cover of The House on Mango Street

It’s late, and I had a wee bit too much durian tonight — so I’ll try to make this quick.

I got WOWED.

I broke my fiction fast with “The House on Mango Street” because it was one of those gleaming golden nuggets that survived my book purge today. I brought it from Chicago. Somehow stole it from an old roomie. Thanks, Tina!

When I was 8 or ten my fave books were  tied between those “Choose  Your own Adventure” novels and the Harlequin Romances that my neighbor Kathy would let me borrow. I thought I was cool reading about kissing and men with “Roman Noses.”

Between the ages of 8 and 12 I read one book — “A Wrinkle in Time” — which is still one that I buy for everyone I know, with the hopes that they will enjoy even an ounce of what that book did for me.

As a teen, reading became uncool for me. So did getting good grades and wearing jeans. I didn’t read an entire book all the way through until I was 17 and in Mrs Galvin’s AP English class. And, that book was “The House on Mango Street.”

The first time, I gobbled it up by the time my bus from the Harold Washington Library reached my stop at 63rd and Nashville. I was officially a reader again. And, finally the stuff I’d been writing made sense. So, I wrote a very passionate letter to Sandra Cisneros. Yeah, she totally didn’t reply.

Today, I didn’t begin reading until at least 8pm. It was tough to decide which book would float my boat today. After not being wowed for 3 days in a row, I was afraid to commit.

The library swears I owe 48 bucks for some ludicrous fees for not bringing back movies???? I promise I will take care of that. I didn’t make it to the bookstore because Dougie was too hungry ( go figure).
So, back to my shelf — I had to choose from “James and the Giant Peach,” “The Restaurant at the End of the Universe” and “Mango Street.” I let my gut decide.

Every word rolls like butter from the page, and I read the first three chapters (vignettes) out loud to Dougie — who dug it til he fell asleep.

When you write in short short stories like she does — every word counts. And, when you read this book, you will want to hold onto every word. As a writer, I am re-inspired. This book is juicy and chunky with imagery and emotion.

It’s not easy to write so short. I mean, see here I thought I was going to keep THIS short. You gotta know what to cut and what will pull at folks’ heart strings. But, this book — this book feels like you are sitting there listening to a little girl dream and dream, and all you want to do is jump rope with her.

I’m from Chicago — where “Mango Street” is set. Reading it brought me back to the “block” with our jump-rope marathons, “ghosts in the graveyard”, curfew.. the Catholics and the Publics. My story. Not Esperanza’s (the main character). It was like I was seeing hers and mine intertwine.

She grew up poor and mentions that a lot. Me — we never thought we were poor. In fact, most of my friends thought we were rich. But, it was our attitudes that made us rich. Our house was where all the kids could come after school for a snack.

But, I know there were weeks and weeks where we ate chicken and chicken and chicken that my grandma sent from the bulk store to help us out. And rice patties. My mother made things so simple. So delicious. And never once did we feel like we were hurting.

I remember a guy on our block. I think his name was Rico.. if you lived on my block…. please help here. Rico would climb on his roof and howl at the moon every night. Sometimes he’d blow off fireworks. Then, one day the kids on the block said he died from falling off the roof into a tree or a pool. Is this true? Anyone? I don’t know.

But, the best stories come from times like that. From the blocks and neighborhoods inside bigger places where kids make their own worlds, and little girls can dream about making it big as a writer and coming back to get all those beautiful souls who could not leave as easily as her. Like Esperanza. And me.

I’ m reading 365 books this year. Clickity Click here to see what’s up with that

xo

G

365 Books to Bliss: Book 3 — “Using Reiki Techniques with Children” By, Mary Riposo, PhD

Books Books
Image via Wikipedia

I began several books today. It’s raining here and my plans to hit up Barne’s and Noble’s big comfy brown chair went awry.

I got a hard lesson from the stacks  of books that clutter my bookshelf. I learned that I need to be wowed, and that some of my books would make better paper mache’ projects.

I truly see the beauty in everything. And, I have such appreciation for the books I’ve read through the years. But, since moving to LA from Chicago, and losing most of my book collection — I realize that my shelves are now full of mediocrity.

There are books I bought on the sale rack, the used book store ones that  were given to me by friends and clients who thought I’d appreciate them. They  were right. I did. Darn me for finding the gifts beneath the boringness.

I couldn’t even stomach the book about Indigo Children.  I wanted to. Really I did.   I love and believe in the concept. But another book that classifies  our kids into little boxes?  It wasn’t written with enough umph, you know? Then, I picked up a book on Shamanic Healing that went right back on my shelf after 20 some pages of talking about sacrificing (as in sacrificing lives as ritual). Sure, maybe it’s fact — but,  I still believe there’s a way to tell an interesting story.

You see, It’s not that I don’t have high standards. I do.  In fact, yesterday, a Facebook friend mentioned that she wanted to buy the  book I read. and I found myself thinking — “no no no.. why waste your time? I did it already and there are so many better books you could read. “

Half the books on my self are below my own writing standards.  I’m not trying to diss anyone here.. but it’s time to step up to the plate. I’ve decided to clear my shelves, even if it makes people think I’m  illiterate.  I must make room for the wow books.

The book I chose for today was the fifth one I opened and perused. “Using Reiki Techniques with Children” By, Mary Riposo, PhD was given to me by one of my Reiki teachers, and I never actually read it. Now, I am a Reiki teacher, so I decided that it was a good option. Most likely my best option considering I didn’t want to slosh through the rain and get soaked today.

I don’t recommend this book either. It’s not bad at all. It goes over a brief description of what Reiki is and how you can use it for children and yourself. It made me focus on how easy it is to feel Reiki and use this beautiful healing art. I use Reiki daily with my family — including Reiki-fying the food we eat, our apartment, our situations, our health etc.  Mary Riposo  describes how you can do that and how it works.

I suppose authors, especially doctors and professionals, have to be really careful in this country when they are writing about alternative treatment. So, I felt that even though she appears to deeply believe in the power of Reiki, she held back.

The book was informational, and it held my attention to the end.  I’m not new to Reiki so,  I learned nothing new.  My Reiki teachers did not specifically teach  all of the techniques  in this book, but they are things I have found to be useful in our home and family with my own practice.

Now, time to get wowed!

I’m reading 365 books this year, join me — whydontcha

365 Books to Bliss: Book 2–“Cell-Level Healing” By, J.W. Hawkes, Ph.D

Cover of "Cell-Level Healing: The Bridge ...
Cover via Amazon

I just finished reading “Cell -Level Healing: The Bridge from Soul to Cell”  By, Joyce Whitely Hawkes, PhD. I was naturally drawn to the book because I have a deep interest in how our cells and physical bodies respond to energy healing. I mean, I know it works — but what happens on the cell level?

Dr. Hawkes is a scientist whose near-death experience left her with the consciousness of her power to use energy to help others heal. Her science background has proven really useful, because  she not only  understands life at the cell level –she has the equipment to measure it.

I’m also particularly interested in stem cell therapy. A few years ago, I kept getting major messages from friends, co-workers,  books, teachers and the voices in my head about stem cells and autism. As many of you know, my son has recovered from severe autism.

I could see how stem cell therapy could really benefit people with autism…. and it since has benefited them. But, in my personal life — medications and medical interventions (especially those that involve needles) are a real last resort. My interest in stem cells comes from my desire to somehow re-create the therapy energetically.

I’ve already been at practice with that. But, I figured that this book would teach me something I need to know in regards to my energetic healing experiments.

Dr. Hawkes does a great job of detailing the components of the cells and their functions, as well as how she tunes in to use this info in order to spread healing at the cell level.  One thing that particularly caught my attention is the swirling nature of the cells, the swirling nature of our chakras, the swirling nature of the kundalini energy (not mentioned in this book, btw), and the swirling nature of ancient symbols (not mentioned in this book). Our galaxy, our cells, and the energy around us are  swirling swirling swirling.  Pretty rad.

She provides  us with meditations and visualizations to help become more aware and appreciative for our bodies and the NOW. She says, and I agree that this is a necessary part of healing.  She also describes how she uses a series of techniques in order to get into a deep openness for the energy to flow. What’s super cool about this  is that Dr. Hawkes’ brain waves have been recorded during the times of her healing (even even distant  healing), and the amount of synchronized brain activity is amazing.

It rocks to have scientific proof of the practices that I have so much faith in. I have a little bit more info to help me on my path as an energy healer.

This book is a quick and easy read that gives a very basic take on how energy healing affects our health  at our core. Read it if that sounds awesome to you.

I’ m reading 365 books this year . Check out the rest of the, here

365 Books to Bliss: Book 1 — “Psychic” By, Sylvia Browne

Don’t ask me why I picked up this book in the “first” place — other than the fact that it must’ve been divinely placed in my hands. It wasn’t the book I was looking for “Psychic Children,” and after reading 2 Sylvia Browne books in the previous week — I was a teeny bit bored of her.

I’m a writer. And, I can get cranky  and arrogant about all the zillion mediocre books that get published without  so much as a spell-checker. I so wrongfully assumed that this book was going to be one of those… yet I THANKFULLY picked it up anyway.

I’m obsessed with Mary Magdaline and Jesus. Have been ever since I was a kid. So, 2 weeks ago, when I was  bouncing down the library steps with my son, the hardcover copy of Sylvia Browne’s “2 Mary’s” fell into my  recycled grocery  bag.  I gobbled it down in 10 hours and found it a bit disappointing. She kept repeating the same concepts  and left me wanting to know more. So,  then I ate up “The Mystical Life of Jesus,” by Sylvia Browne, and began developing a soft spot for this famous psychic.

The JC book was much better in that there was more info to reveal. I felt the book about the two Mary’s didn’t contain enough info to call it a book.    If you wanted, I could summarize it in one sentence. But, I won’t. Because ,by now I am deeply in love with Sylvia Browne… almost more than I’ve ever been with any other psychic. And, “The Mystical Life of Jesus is so worth reading IF you are intrigued and new to the subject. It’s so easy to read, and so full of love and respect.  She shares new information about Christ that is likely to help anyone develop a stronger relationship with themselves and God. This is not a book  touting Christianity  or any other religion, and it takes Christianity far beyond the constraints of the Bible. In fact it totally shakes the Christian paradigm.

“Psychic”  By, Sylvia Browne

I’ m psychic. Have been for many lifetimes. Only now, finally — Ive figured out that it’s not a sin, or too weird. In fact.. I actually am fairly normal. But, when this book landed in my hand, it was because I first thought it was another of her book’s “Psychic Children.” I was hoping on some advice to help nourish my son’s abilities.

What I got instead was laugh after laugh as Sylvia describes her metamorphosis into a fully developed psychic. Everything happens so organically for her. Like how she has no idea that past lives exist, until she unintentionally regresses someone to ancient Egypt during a hypnosis.

Being psychic doesn’t mean that you know everything. We are just given messages sometimes, and it is for us to experience the life around the messages. I could so relate to her story. Sometimes I feel naive because terms like “astral travel” are fairly new to  me — but I’ve known how to do it my whole life.

The book wasn’t written as a “how to, ” but I found myself taking notes.

She teaches the difference between ghosts and spirits and what to do if you encounter either. She dispels myths about the Other Side, fairies, doppelgangers, angels and so much more.

Because this is a memoir, we come to understand that Sylvia is a person first devoted to logic and research.

I think that we all should be pretty skeptical of paranormal stuff if we have no proof. I am. There are lots of scams out there. Because I am psychic, I really benefited from the advice of the veteran — even though she didn’t write it as advice.

Read it if you are a young psychic. Read it if you would love to know more about exercising your psychic abilities. Read it for lots of laughs and a really great story about how one woman found BLISS by becoming her truest self.

Namaste,

Gina

note: I’m not selling this book.  I linked it to the Amazon page where I got the image

I’ reading 365 Books this year. Brace yourself.

365 Books to Bliss

Description unavailable
Image by jvoves via Flickr

Writers read, right? Well, this year, I’m gonna take a pretty huge bite out of some books that I’ve been dying to read for years. And then some more.

It’s On!

Someone said I couldn’t read a book a day and blog about it this year… that’s all I needed to hear to officially challenge myself. My reading quest this year will consist of reading 1 book each day and sharing the juicy bits with you.

I don’t plan on spoiling endings for you. But, I’ll let you  in on what I got out of each book, why I was drawn to it and if and why I recommend it.

100 Years of Solitude

My heart is crying  tears outloud for how long it’s been since I read a good novel. I’ve been stuck in a non-fiction world, filling my brain with reality and it hurts. Every time I buy what looks like a great book, I ask my hubby to read it. I haven’t been allowing myself to indulge in fiction (especially  new fiction.. for like…. years (if you don’t count the fact that I read “On the Road” once a year.

100Years of Solitude By Gabriel Garcia Marquez will  pull me outa the  fliction slump. Can I read it in a day?  We shall see. I’ve been practicing with some shorter, less hilarious works to get me started.

Can I really read  365 books in 2011? We shall see! I’ll tell you for sure, I’m going to read whatever I’m drawn to, and then report honestly back to you and see what happens.
Let me know if you have any recommendations or want to join me.

Let the games begin,

G

 

 

I Thank the Lord for the People I Have Found

Big Heart of Art - 1000 Visual Mashups
Image by qthomasbower via Flickr

Yep, I so borrowed that line from Elton John, and I thank the Lord for him too.   If you’re kind to me, I may one day share the love poem I wrote to EJ in 8th grade.

2010 has rocked my socks off

I went through countless and often very un-desired computer and electronic problems. In the throws of the current Mercury Retrograde, my phones fizzled out, my computer crash, boom, banged on many levels, I lost more of my files (research and other “important” stuff),my sink clogged, ants took over my apartment, my gas was turned off,  I broke the movie screen at our local library with 2 bits of Reiki (whoops)and I spent a lot of time in talks with my guides about what it all meant.

But, I’m convinced that these techy bumps in the road have cleared the path for what’s to come.

I wrote so much  this year that my fingers nearly melted, I surpassed my career goals, I held my little man’s hand to his first day of school, I said yes a lot,  I ate sushi again,  I  learned that I  love durian, I went to  my first  heavy metal concert, I connected with the awesomeist clients ever, I became a Reiki Master Teacher, I performed my first official intuitive/psychic readings (well, in this life time), I had a spontaneous 36-hour past life regression that taught me so much about myself, I learned how to say no, I forgave and let go, I spent 90% of the time with my my soul twin and hubby, Doug, and thankfully I found this yummy bliss inside that rocks my world.

And that’s just an ounce of it

I’m a people person. If you work with me, you know that it usually takes all of 2 minutes to become my friend. I’ve met and lost many friends this year. All in good vibes though –for the experiences have really helped me enjoy the taste of life.

I am so thankful to you  for making your way in my life and sharing your energy and lessons. I am grateful to be able to hug you, listen to you, and even let you go, if that’s where the world has taken us. You, my friends make me realize how precious life is and I honor every moment that I know you.

My angel card for today was forgiveness

And,  the forgiveness that I sent and experienced today has opened me up for so much more. I’m ready for 2011, are you?

what rocked about 2010.. and what do you want ore of in 2011?

I really am so grateful for you.

Namaste,

Gina

Hey There Vanilla

#76 - The Harvest Writer
Image by JohnONolan via Flickr

By, Gina LaVerde

Not too long ago, a client (in a distinctly unsatisfied tone) dubbed my writing, “VANILLA.”

And, I, on the other side of the  phone line, closed my eyes – feeling for the gift in her remark.

See, I’m at this place in life where I’ve finally recognized that each moment truly brings a gift. If I manifested the vanilla comment, then I can only stand to gain from it.

I’m passed being offended by criticism. As a professional writer, like most of us – I’ve grown a pretty thick skin for vanilla-ish commentary. I figure that clients are people too, and, sometimes they just can’t find better words to express what they need. Heck, that’s why they hire writers. For Words.

An editor once told me that my work was “more suited for advertising” – as if that were a bad thing. I’ve been told that my restaurant reviews left the reader “too breathless” – as if that were a bad thing. I’ve been told that I am “more of a story-teller than an article writer” – as if that were a bad thing.

I’ve been asked to speed up, cut to the chase, slow down, get into or out of a character’s head, switch perspectives and possibly my total fave critique came from a fiction editor who told me it was “impossible” to write from the perspective of an unborn child. Gotta love it. The thought that even in fiction, things could be “impossible.”

And now, “vanilla.” And, I like vanilla. I mean, it’s no chocolate, but some vanilla in my morning tea or smoothie really brings out the other flavors.

Was my client trying to say that my words provided her with a deliciously subtle yet strong foundation from which she could build the spiciest pizazziest work?  Mmmmmm, I took a short pause on the phone, and began to miss those vanilla lattes I used to drink. But, then I snapped back.

Oh yeah, she didn’t mean the least good thing about this truly exotic spice. Or the work being judged, for that matter.

Truth is, as a writer, of course I want to please my clients. I chose the job. If I can keep my clients happy, I can get paid and move on to the next gig. They can expand their businesses and skip off to vacationland. Everyone wins. So, I stopped to REALLY listen to her AGAIN.

What had I missed? I’d recorded all the conversations we had, and there were many of them. I had a lot of material to work from and was using her own words in the drafts I sent her.

So, how was I gonna please vanilla lady? If my work was vanilla to her, how could I make it chocolate for just one moment? Or, should I recommend her to someone else –because name-calling’s just not nice?

Well, I decided that it wasn’t a good idea to pawn her off on any of my writerly friends, because none of them deserved the potential heckling.

And, the process that followed the decision to stay has been quite eye opening. And, yes a gift.

I stayed. And I wrote. Vanilla-laced-cinnamon piece after fruity, salty, bland doo doo piece after another. Never chocolate. Never. But, I didn’t know that as I wrote. Even pieces that came from deep within my soul didn’t hit the mark for my client. And, later I realized that they didn’t hit the mark for me either.

Her vanilla comment lead her to (in not so many words) refer to me as a liar, lazy person, bad communicator, and yes, even stupid. For a few weeks I actually found myself going out of my way in search of my gifts that were quite obviously sewn between the seams of her words. I let her believe that I lied. I figured there might be a lesson in that too. I even enlisted my spiritual advisors.

I kept sending gratitude for the challenge. I knew there was no way I was in this situation for no reason; I knew I would hit a major breakthrough. And I did.

In the end, there was no pleasing my client. The experience brought me back to a recurring one I had with a family member who used her words to praise my friends and put me down.

When I decided I’d had enough, I sent the client the best work I had, didn’t charge her more, and left her with love and more gratitude than she can ever know.

Her words to me were my manifestation. A mirror of how I was feeling about my writing. Truth hurts, baby cakes. Thank the goddesses that she didn’t call my work “shit.” I’d have a harder time coming up with sweet sounding words about why shit ain’t so bad.   But, I decided that I’m no vanilla. At least not when vanilla means boring. And, I’m not going to attract that kind of crap anymore.

And, so you wanna know why I felt vanilla and she was just strong enough to call me out on it? Because for years, I’ve been writing for other people, while this spicy voice inside me died a little each time.  And, that frightened little writer girl inside me went out searching for another soul who could hold her down. Not inspire her breaking loose. You know – the comfort zone.

I chose pleasing others and making money above publishing my own work. Writing for this client was grueling. Each time I sat down, I got headaches and nausea. Each word was a complete struggle.

Finally, that writer inside is stronger than my fear of failure or being broke on my butt. I’m no longer trying to find people who keep me down. Because, if you look — they are there. Always willing to make you feel inferior.

Here comes MY work.

I can’t fit into anyone’s box anymore. Even if it is a tempting box of chocolates.

Keep it spicy loves!

G