Wednesday, July 31, 2013

A Placid and Blessed Morning

The river is placid this morning, serene under grey skies.  The morning is filled with birdsong and the cooler weather has sent the mosquitoes to their hiding places. 

Yesterday we began the first “experiment” in the book E-Squared:  Nine do-It-Yourself Energy Experiments That Prove Your Thoughts Create Reality by Pam Grout.  It is simple.  Tell the Field of Infinite Possibilities that you wish a blessing or happy surprise and give it 48 hours.  Then pay close attention. (I’m hoping for a call or email from Llewellyn.)

Last night, we spent time visiting Robert and Jay, brothers living here in their pop-up.  Jay is dying of brain cancer—coincidentally, so is the man in the next spot over, in a big RV.  (More synchronistically, if you as me.) Mandy and Dan are sharing a campsite with them for a few days, a bargain struck in our absence to Thompson Causeway.

Since we began the experiment, I have perceives a couple of blessings:  my blood pressure was normal, my blood work is normal, (stay on the Lisinopril+), we received a $20 credit from Verizon, we were able to do some needed shopping (I got some favorite stuff), and the weather continues to be kind.

Rick says, “I got up this morning.  That is a blessing.”  I agree.  I am here with the man I love (who is currently cooking breakfast on our new campstove), and my cats, working at projects I love, free from the normally awful heat of a Midwestern summer, and I’m free.  Blessings, indeed.

Monday, July 29, 2013

The Trip Home

After our wonderfully rich spirit-filled weekend, it was time to get down to business.  Monday we visited three bookstores:  Bellaluna Boutique, The Eye of Horus and Magus Books.  All were quite receptive to the Psycards and one even offered to represent Psycards as the distributor to 430 other bookstores.  

Then it was on to the big kahuna:  Llewellyn Publishing.  Now anyone who knows anything about metaphysical books knows Llewellyn.  They have been publishing practical, quality books on all aspects of metaphysics for decades.  I had prepared a detailed cover letter, and collected my book, Nick’s book, the Psycards, and a brochure, all of which I left for Barbara Moore, the acquisitions editor for cards and such. I was not able to meet with her personally because the editors aren’t housed at the headquarters.  Barbara is also one of Llewellyn’s authors and an expert on Tarot and oracles.  So, I blessed the package, put in the hands of the angels and now we wait.

By mid-afternoon we were headed back south along the Great River Road, this time we took the Wisconsin side of The River.  We were physically and mentally exhausted so we didn’t get as far and spent the night in Pepin, WI. On Tuesday, we traveled through Dubuque to pick up US 61, a quicker route back to the QCA.  I stopped at River Lights Bookstore and discussed consignment and possible workshops.  So, altogether we hit five bookstores and a publisher—I hope all those seeds have found fertile soil.

Like the trip up, we wanted to stop and see all the little parks and historic things along the way.  However, Wisconsin’s parks apparently aren’t free.  Every state park or site we stopped at wanted a minimum of $7 just to drive through, and one historic site wanted $18!  Needless to say, we didn’t have that kind of money to toss around, so we kept on moving.  I’m not sure I like Wisconsin.  Minnesota was much friendlier. But Wisconsin was also beautiful.

Drawbridge in Prescott, WI

We did manage to enjoy Maiden Rock—there was no charge to read the historical marker or look at the rock itself.
Lake Pepin

One of the places we stopped was Black Hawk Park (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers) in DeSoto, Wisconsin.  I was drawn to one spot and when we read the marker I was filled with tears and sorrow. The marker was Black Hawk Marker 7, the Head of Battle Isle.  The marker read:

On the eve of August 1, 1832, Black Hawk and his men, with a flag of truce, went to the head of this island to surrender to the captain of steamer "Warrior." Whites on boat asked, "Are you Winnebagos or Sac?" "Sacs" replied Black Hawk.  A loaded canister was at once fired killing 23 Indians suing for peace.
A second, older marker read:

"The Battle of Bad Axe ended the very sorry spectacle we now call the Black Hawk War.  The Indians stumbled into these events because of lies, misinformation, and stubborn, wishful thinking.  The actual conflict began only because Gen. Atkinson authorized the undisciplined and poorly led militia units to precede his regular army troops and to travel without an interpreter.  Black Hawk had sent a small group to ask for peace talks with Stillman's Militiamen only to have his men shot.  During the night after the Battle of Wisconsin Heights, Nampope tried to get the whites to agree to a surrender, but again the lack of an interpreter foiled that effort to end the fighting.  Even their last-ditch white flag show to troops aboard the WARRIOR brought a hail of lead instead of a chance to surrender.  Perhaps as many as a thousand people may have died for nothing!"
Further information reveals that men, women and children were all gunned down ruthlessly. The killing continued for eight hours!  They shot women with babies on their backs trying to escape the gunfire through the water. 

I went back to the car after reading this and retrieved my staff and my medicine blanket and tobacco and went to the water's edge.  There I said a blessing, sang a spirit song that came to me, and offered tobacco in honor and in apology. There is no excuse for this sort of tragedy, of travesty.  God is merciful, but men seldom are. 

We returned to happy friends and grateful talkative cats, spent a couple of days resting, then moved off to Thompson Causeway here north of Clinton.  Today, we are going “home”—back to the QC because out here we have spotty Internet service, no television, and lots of mosquitoes.  Our RV is being repaired later this week or early next—new awning and air conditioner cover.  No more raining inside the RV. 

The weather is freaky and wonderful—a low this morning of 49 degrees!  In July!  In the Midwest!  I thank Spirit for the relief, for the kindness of mild weather.

More photos:

My honey bear

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Minnesota and More

The last couple of weeks have been a Godsend—a deeply rich spiritual experience adorned with moments of sheer delight. 

The Psycards USA funding arrived just in time to fund the excursion to the Twin Cities in Minnesota.  We decided against taking the RV because the nature of the trip required not just going and parking somewhere, but driving from here to there and back again.  We left on Thursday the 18th, leaving the cats and the RV at Fisherman’s Corner in Hampton with our now-good friends Mandy and Dan.  It was hot when we left, so we felt good about leaving them the air-conditioned RV to provide some relief.

The view from Thompson Causeway, Thompson, Illinois.
As we traveled north, we stopped at every mound along the river to pay respects to the spirits of the land, to the ancestors of the people.  Along the way we viewed magnificent vistas, learned a little history and found dozens of “synchronicity” threads to my work and to my novel Bartleby: A Scrivener’s Tale, which was launched on Kindle recently.

We visited a bookstore in Galena, took photos of Herman Melville’s uncle’s house, traveled back roads to the Savanna Army Depot with its abandoned buildings being robustly reclaimed by nature to visit the overlook from the longest natural sand dune formation in Illinois, 70 feet above the Mississippi River. Shortly after we crossed into Wisconsin, we discovered The Grotto in Dickeyville. This amazing shrine was built by one man (with help from his parishioners) with materials from all over the world.  It was a surprise discovery, I found it delightful.  

We also checked out the campsites at Thompson Causeway for a future excursion. Nearing sunset we stopped at Wyalusing, WI, so I could wade in the River herself.  We stopped for a drink in Ferryville and waited for the sunset, which was a beautiful as it promised.

 We stopped at every historical marker—Rick called them “hysterical markers” because they sneak up on you so quickly and you have to respond immediately, as in “Quick! Pull over here and read this sign!”

We intended to spend the night in LaCrosse, but couldn’t find an affordable hotel, so we moved on to Winona in Minnesota and stayed in the shadow of Sugar Loaf Bluff at the (you guessed it!) Sugar Loaf Motel. 

Friday morning we launched out early heading for Minneapolis, and learned more about the Mississippi River when we came upon Lake Pepin. Lake Pepin is still the Mississippi River, but here it has been slowed to form a natural lake.  Lake Chippewa is a tributary river that empties into the Mississippi at a steep angle, and because of this, it deposited more silt than the Mississippi could carry away, forming a kind of natural dam.  The Mississippi backed up upon itself and formed Lake Pepin—the widest natural part of the river at an average of 1.7 miles.  It is also rumored to be home to lake monster “Pepie” but we didn’t see any sign of unusual creatures outside of the human variety.  

We arrived in the Twin Cities and found our hotel, only to discover that it was a second floor room with no elevator.  No way we were going to be able to carry our bags upstairs!  Rick’s back and shoulders and weight-lifting limitations from the hernia surgeries put him out of the bell-boy business a long time ago, and I have the tendonitis and the bad elbow from packing last year, as well as my own chronic low back troubles.  At those rates, I expected either an elevator or a bellhop!

Cedric Red Feather had mentioned to me on the phone that a number of folks were staying at the AmericInn in Coon Rapids, so we went there.  At first, the desk clerk told me there were no rooms left, until I asked for smoking.  Ta-da!  A room magically opened up.  (First advantage smoking has given me in a long time.)

We met Cedric’s group at the Bunker Park Stables for a trail ride.  I was thrilled because I haven’t had a chance to ride in many years (18, I think), and I had never ridden with Rick.  I was assigned a horse named Eli, and Rick was to be placed on Zeus—a big Belgian.

After the ride, we all traveled to Cedric’s apartment house, the Oaks of Lake George.  There we ate and introduced ourselves to each other.  Cedric announced the plans for the weekend and roles everyone would play in the ceremony to come Saturday night.  Regalia was gifted and I was surprised and delighted to receive my own shawl with the patch that read “Mandan Dreams: Lake George Spirit Gathering.”  It boasted a Kokopelli in the sunset near a lake.  Beautiful synchronicity!
It was such an honor to be included with this powerful group of spiritual leaders and medicine people.  I’m still not certain how I came to be included, but I am deeply grateful. 

One of the gathering, Sherman Sierra, invited us to attend his lecture the following morning at the Best Western next to the AmericInn. He was at the gathering with his wife, Sariah, an elvin-like being of deep mystery and eternal innocence, and his father- and mother-in-law, a deeply spiritual Mormon couple.

The next morning I attended Sherman’s lecture titled “Anthropology 101”—which was basically an exploration of Native oral histories, the Bible and the Book of Mormon.  While I didn’t necessarily agree with all of Sherman’s conclusions, I was fascinated by the clues and information regarding pre-Columbian Native history. Sherman told us that this was an historic moment, because never before has this collection of reasoning been presented to anyone outside the Mormon Church, or Native gatherings. 

It was filled with references to the Tower of Babel, the Adamic (or Ur) language; touched on Findhorn, elves and fairies, vortices, ley lines, spear points found in both Turkey and the Virginia Piedmont area, flying saucers, and the Melchizedek priesthood. Now this may all sound a little too woo-woo, but trust me, it was fascinating and I look forward to doing more research.  Also, this brief list does no justice at all to the presentation given by Sherman.

With this spirit-mind-thinking so stimulated, we all gathered at Lake George State Park to have a picnic and to share our skills.  I learned the right way to wear my regalia, listened to Cedric tell of prophecies, had my aura tuned by Katherine Kennedy, and had enriching conversations with a number of people over the course of the afternoon.

It was hot but I managed to survive the trail ride and the picnic without having any hint of heat stroke.  We broke for dinner—Rick and I went back to the hotel—then reconvened at Lake George around 6:30.  We gathered our staffs together and Cedric and helpers set them up in a sacred circle. Inside the circle was placed a buffalo robe and a white buffalo robe, as well as an alter with buffalo skulls.  We could place objects before the alter to be blessed.  I placed my newly gifted rose quartz, my newly acquired Lemurian crystal, my Psycards, and a picture of Kyle (symbolically including Mary Ellen and baby-to-be). Rick thought at first that he didn’t have anything, then he was inspired to put his keys on the blanket for blessings on all our travels.

No photos were allowed of the ceremony, as this was private and sacred, so you will have to rely on my own faulty memory.  We gathered around 7:30 and began to chant and drum.  Players with assigned roles came and were blessed and danced and sang for specific purposes.  There were channeled messages, prayers, songs, chants—and mosquitoes!  But despite the thick swarm of insects, I received not one single mosquito bite that evening.  At one point during the ceremony, we saw a flash of light over the center of the lake—a significant event, in my view, and confirmation that we were connected to the spirit world in a very powerful way.  We continued this way until long after dark and although I didn’t have any direct or personal epiphany, I felt included in this important prayer for the world.

The next morning, exhausted, we rested and watched TV in the hotel room.  I went for a swim and sat in the hot tub to ease my muscles from riding and from walking so much at the park.  Late in the afternoon, Rick and I were able to get our aura photos taken by Katherine and her dad, Larry.  Then it was off to Stillwater for our final gathering on a paddle-wheel boat for a sunset dinner cruise on the St. Croix River.

I will leave the pictures I have posted on Facebook here and here to tell the rest of the story of the Lake George gathering.

Next post:  The Trip Home.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Getting Caught Up

I have been remiss in my postings because I have been awfully busy!  Psycards budget increased and I've been working that angle, and we made a wonderful excursion to the Twin Cities in Minnesota for a special event last week.  Now we are at Thompson's Causeway in Thompson, Illinois, and the weather is perfectly autumnal! 

Temperatures at 60 degrees in July is very strange, but delightful.  A little gray, a little breezy and comfortable, comfortable, comfortable.

I have posted our pictures from Minnesota (mostly) on Facebook, but will be putting more up here soon, along with a complete update.

Friday, July 12, 2013

We are truly not alone--just held hostage...

I wonder if alien mothers use Earth as an example of how people are suffering and how they should be grateful for what they have and where they live…

“Eat your flegmuts, Willfrin, there are children starving on Earth!”
Although I have long "believed" there was contact from others--Pleiadians, Sirians, and the feared Greys, part of me was not totally convinced that it wasn't just an archetypal longing for help and connection, a sort of group mythology we invented for comfort.  After all, being the only intelligent beings in the Universe seems terribly lonely.  But hearing it from a credible and knowledgeable source really brought the reality home with a punch!  An OMG followed shortly by a TG (Thank God!).  I only want to know how I can help save us from the ones who still struggle for power and greed.  I thought I would start by simply sharing this:

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Moving Moments Among the Mundane

Usually I try to post when something interesting has happened, or I suffer from a deep thought I feel compelled to share.  But today was a rather mundane day and I thought I would share that as well (I promise, I won’t do this every day!). 

It was overcast and very muggy this morning.  I had to go the doctor’s office for lab work, so we left early as I had been fasting since midnight and was anxious to get it done and go to breakfast.  Since we were going to town, we ran errands—the bank, the pharmacy, Wal-mart, that sort of thing.  We had to visit three grocery stores to get the right objects in the right sizes—there is very limited kitchen storage space in our RV.  We also stopped at West Lake Park so I could get a shower in an air conditioned building and at the park office to pay up our site until Thursday.

Then home by 1 PM, putting the groceries and shower stuff and paperwork away took another 30 minutes, because it meant re-arranging both of my kitchen cabinets to make room for the new products. This also requires re-packaging the contents of packages—instant mashed potatoes go in storage bottles to protect against moisture and insects, for example.  Anything packaged in a big, bulky box gets transferred out of its box and into a Ziploc bag with a label—either on the outside, or by tearing off the instructions and placing them into the bag.  (Things like stuffing, soup, etc.).

Then I checked my email (no real news there), and now I’m going to play Facebook games until dinner time.

Dull, huh?  There were two small highlights—two things that made my spiritual ears perk up:  an NPR interview with Peter Gabriel about an inter-species Internet (!), and a book for sale at the library, Symbols of Transformation by C.G. Jung himself.  I also bought another book On Dreams and Death: A Jungian Interpretation, by Marie-Louise von Franz, Scott Peck’s The Road Less Traveled, Further Along the Road Less Traveled, and People of the Lie.  They were only a quarter each. I’d read Peck years and years ago, but I felt he was worth revisiting.

I’m really experiencing a deep and thoughtful pleasure reading Goddesses in Older Women:  Archetypes in Women Over Fifty, Becoming a Juicy Crone, by Jean Shinoda Bolen, M.D.  Her writing really stimulates the inner sense of archetypes and further awakens my deepest wisdom and understanding of the world, of spirit, of human nature. 

This morning at breakfast I was reading her archetype of Hecate and had a small personal breakthrough.  I think I mentioned Hecate in an earlier post, but the section on “Hecate as Feared Witch,” which describes the long European cultural tradition of torturing and murdering women, especially older women, as being witches.  This triggered latent fears—fears I have had all my life and which have served to keep me quiet and cooperative in my earlier years.  I have distinct past life memories of being accused and killed as a witch.  Bolen’s words triggered a realization within—is it possible, I thought, that I have subconsciously attracted poverty because of my experiences with witch burning?  After all, it was often prosperous women, women in possession of property, respect and knowledge, who were targeted.  The Church got very rich on the confiscated goods and lands of burned witches.  Perhaps, I need to reclaim that woman who was me so long ago.  It makes so much sense to me now:  my fear of authority, fear of imprisonment, fear of torture, fear of fire, fear of death.  Those times of terror and murder (over 500 years) have left a long legacy of karmic memories.  So, perhaps I will concentrate in my meditations in the coming weeks on recovering the details, remembering the fear and facing it—reclaiming the power of the lessons learned.

If anyone who reads this blog has read this book, I would welcome comments and if you had any personal experiences of enlightenment while reading it. 

Now, I’m off to play Ruby Blast…

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Current location

Today we are off again back to Clark's Ferry in Montpelier.  See map from earlier posts.

Hope to see some of you there!

Perseverance and Possibilities

When Rick and I first moved to the Quad Cities (I moved back) in 1999, I told him, “We’re going to buy a house.”  I was sick of crazy landlords and living on land that wasn’t ours.  I wanted to have my cats in peace and to garden. 

The social service agencies I went to seeking help in first-time home buying all told me it was impossible.  I remember one time, I was so mad at what the woman had said I sat in my car and cried and railed and fumed.  How dare she tell me no?  Who the hell was she to tell me what was impossible?  Why I’ve done so much with so little for so long, that I am now qualified to do the impossible with nothing!   

I was angry, not so much because she was a stupid bureaucrat unable to think outside the “rules,” as much as I was angry that she was making me doubt that I could do it.  My intention was clear:  to find a way to buy a home.  My inner landscape consisted of optimism, of faith, but the specter of depression and hopelessness still stalked the dark hallways of my mind, and needed but little to raise their ugly little heads. Her refusal to believe in my dream triggered all my own deepest fears.

I am reading a wonderful book right now that is stimulating my higher understanding, my deeper awareness:  Goddesses in Older Women:  Archetypes in Women over Fifty, by Jean Shinoda Bolen, MD.  Its subtitle is “Becoming a Juicy Crone.”  This morning I am reading about Hecate—the shadowy magical goddess of intuition from Greek mythology. She stands at the crossroads, the tri-via where three roads meet.  While reading Bolen’s description of her archetype, I also saw her as the guide at the juncture where the three worlds meet—the upper world, the lower world and our world.  Archetypally she represents our own descent into the underworld and the wisdom gained there.  She seeks always the truth.  If she does not know an answer, she seeks out those who do, or she discovers it herself.

Bolen offers this meditative suggestion:  “Ask yourself: ‘What have I learned about life from my own experience?’

My immediate answer is “What haven’t I learned?” (But that is like an invitation to the Universe to bring more hard lessons, so I steered away from that.)  The true answer is that I have learned many things.  One of them is that what you can see, what you can believe in, what you can persevere to obtain, CAN be yours. 

Less than a month after my meltdown over the social services worker, Rick and I moved into our own home.  We found a way, and the Universe provided a way, because we believed it.  Faith truly does move mountains.

What else did I learn?  That faith doesn’t have to be perfect to work.  If your faith outweighs your doubt, it can be made real.  I think that is what Jesus might have meant when he talked about having faith the size of a grain of mustard seed (a very small thing, mustard seed).  If your faith is even a mustard seed larger than the doubts, it shall be so. 

Monday, July 1, 2013


I’d forgotten how nice it is to make friends.  Just make new friends.  As easily as when we were children, when all we needed in common was a swing set or a ball and we could become fast friends.

For many years now I have been very reserved about making new friends.  After my bout with homelessness and the abandonment I felt from the people I trusted the most, I learned to hold my heart close and guarded.  But everything is different now.  I am different now. 

I think I’m becoming happier. 

I have less stress.  I have less anxiety.  I laugh more.  I walk more.  I have more times when I actually feel like being social.  For the longest time, I could only take people in small doses or if we were drinking together.  Otherwise, I became bored or overwhelmed—extended conversation was simply too much to manage. 

I suppose part of that is the necessary solitariness of being a writer.  After all, writers work alone.  We have to.  It is only alone that we can hear the voice of the muse, that we can maintain the connection over an extended period of time.  The muse becomes our primary relationship.  It becomes the center of our worlds. 

But even the solitary, heart-wounded writer must come out from behind the keyboard eventually. And I am glad that today when I did there were new friends to have a little fun with.

Dan and Mandy waiting for the pizza delivery boat.

Mandy and Dan watching the "fleet" go by.    

Rick decides to join them.

Rick decides he'd rather walk ON the water!
I told you I could do it!

Going down with the picnic table.

Rick, me and Mandy.  Having fun like kids at camp!


"Come on, hon, I'll carry you!"

"No, you won't!"

"I can wade."

Lazin' like a lizard in the sun.