Wednesday, October 31, 2012

11/1/12 - Happy Rabbit Rabbit Day!
"Rabbit rabbit rabbit" is one variant of a common British superstition which states that a person should say or repeat the word "rabbit" or "rabbits", or say the phrase "white rabbits", or some combination of these elements, out loud upon waking on the first day of the month, because doing so will ensure good luck for the duration of that month. Today, it is a frequent tradition in many English-speaking countries.
 Renya Rainbow Feather (one of my many names) is enjoying myself immensely in the animal pen with goat, chickens, roosters and ducks foraging an abundance of beautiful feathers. In the moments in between gathering, I am consciously switching gears from my action self into my observer self to watch the animals with eyes of learning and fascination.

Mellow Day ~ Off now to water plants and rock in the hammock ... my summer tan has disappeared ... I need some color.

 t-shirt message:

10/31/12 - Halloween

 I've never been into traditional Halloween fanfare, although this recognized holiday does hold special significance for me in another way.  Tonight is when the veil between the worlds is most thin, where souls in this world and beyond are closest.  I use this Hallows opportunity to commune with my beloved ones in the heavens.

Following all the burning of brush yesterday, I see very puffy eyes gazing back at me in the mirror this morning.  I'm happy to hear that today's wwoofing chores will involve the element of water and plants, giving my eyes a day of rest before continuing with the much more needed brush clearing and exposure to the roaring bonfire.

Today's opportunity:
I've always wanted to milk a cow or goat and today was the day!  Betty showed me how to milk Daisy Mae!  Fresh goat milk and yummy homemade yogurt!

I just had a notion, I will make a yummy stirfry dish with lots of orange peppers and carrots this afternoon to celebrate the popular color of this day.

 Today seems to be a networking day.  The Rainbow Connector in me invites you to be inspired.  Check out the below quotes and website. 

Thank you Maia for passing on these following quotes:
 Whether a woman knows it or not, she is a vessel of great magnitude born capable of reshaping humanities destiny if she only knew the true depths of her innate gifts. Be prepared now to see the fierce face of the feminine rock as her inner geographies of volcanic strength erupt from a love she has held in her belly for life all of her days. This is not a gasp of her last breath. It is her birthing cry into her wise leadership on our planet.-ALisa Starkweather
"maybe being brave is no more than
staring down the 'less than' feeling
and stepping up to the 'i am worthy' feeling."
                        -terri st. cloud

I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.”           -Mother Teresa

Thank you Gabriele for forwarding this amazing story:
Aergia (meaning divine daughter) ... is on a truly remarkable journey walking across the Appalachian Trail extending through Winter from Georgia to Maine from October, 2012 to April, 2013.    

To find out more about her story and purpose (and I recommend you do!)
Google: Aergia walking the Appalachian Trail


Tuesday, October 30, 2012

10/30/12 - Today's first wwoofing experience gave me an idea of what homesteading pioneers went through during several hours of cutting, clearing and burning brush.

Hard work
working the land
making me stronger!

When I came inside
and looked at my face in the mirror
I was stunned to see
a brown face looking back at me.
Frankly, I welcome a darker skin tone
too bad its dirt that needs to come off.

Harvest Moon tonight....
climbed on top of the roof
What a view!

Just came across this quote:

May the Sun bring you new energy day by day
May the Moon softly restore you by night
May the rain wash away your worries
May the breeze blow new strenth into your being
May you walk gently through the world
and know its beauty all the days of your life.

        ... And with that I'm off to bed
                and bid you all adieu ....

Some pics of Betty's solar berm home dwelling ~ 


10/28/12 -   This morning I am accompanying Betty to the Unity Church in Norman.  I am scheduled as the speaker for today's service.  This is a wonderful opportunity to inspire others and manifest funds along the way.

One of the messages I received in Hot Springs from the Spirit of Mantaka was that it was time for me to "say what I see and do what I know intuitively. Flowing with spirit in the moment was the guiding force in which I accepted this speaking engagement. The words and energy that came through me during my approx. 30 minute sharing focused upon the power of unity, the power of our thoughts, unified intention, living our soul path's dreams, committing and recommitting to living, loving, and caring for one another and the earth.

Thank you Family of Unity for warmly welcoming me! I loved participating and contributing to today's joy-filled service!  I especially loved the  tone of freedom in the service when folks are invited to greet one another thorough inspirational song, movement and hugging up and down the aisles.  That was fabulous!  Thank you also for inviting me too display/sell my prayer bundles!
The desire to share my spiritual creative gifts while traveling is my prayer of intent and I celebrate the beginning of this actualization. YES! WOOHOO!!!

In the afternoon, I attended with Betty a Biodynamic composting gathering. 

 It's invigorating to be with a group of conscious earth stewards, homesteaders and organic gardeners.  Years ago, I attended such gatherings with my beloved Brevard, whose energy I feel strongly this afternoon. Just before he died, his dream was for us to build a solar home together and he was in the midst of studying/practicing permaculture and biodynamic composting just like these folks. For this reason, it feels quite synchronistic for me to be attending this gathering.

Permaculture and biodynamics are methods of organic gardening and composting where natural systems of the earth are used to help restore the Earth's soil. Caring for the planet and people are at the heart of both Permaculture and Biodynamics, with growing food and dealing with sustainable food production. Biodynamics measures the life of the soil – the microbiology. The theory being that soil cultivation can disturb this ‘invisible’ ecosystem and therefore impact on the production of biologically available nutrients (the sort that plants take up). In a handful of soil there can be literally billions of individual life forms of incredible diversity!

Below are some pics of the biodynamic composting presentation:

 ...followed by a most delicious healthy potluck
Hosts:  Tony and Becky Hawkins in the beautiful solar home they built.

Amazing Cactus Floor Lamp

 * It was a fun educational day *

Sunday, October 28, 2012

10/29/12 -  The foundation of my journey centers around prayer and openness to resonant connection.  When someone tells me about someone they know or somewhere they've been and the information rings resonant with me, I reach out to explore that direction and then doors of invitation open before me. Such was the case when I was visiting dear friends Belle and Bob in Charlottesville, Virginia this past September.  When I shared with them my primary driving route and my desire to WWOOF along the way, (Willing Workers on On Organic Farms), the next thing I know Belle an Bob are on the phone calling their long time friend Betty in Oklahoma who sometimes offers WWOOFING opportunities.  Betty was home to receive the call and I was able to introduce myself that evening.  Thank you AGAIN Belle & Bob!!!

WWOOF is a world wide network of organizations linking volunteers with organic farmers and help people share more sustainable ways of living.  WWOOF is an exchange - in return for volunteer help, WWOOF hosts offer food, accommodation and opportunities to learn about organic lifestyle. WWOOFING can be experienced from over 30 countries from Canada to Kenya and from India to Iceland.

Betty has also told me about another organization called (Appropriate Technology Transfer for Rural Areas) offering sustainable internship opportunities.  I'm going to check out that site too.

Betty's home is located in Norman, Oklahoma, about thirty minutes from Oklahoma City.  She lives in a solar berm home.  
(Berm stands for Business Environmental Risk Management Home). Berm homes are the most energy efficient home you can build. Berm home are a lot like their above-ground relatives, but with numerous additional bonuses that come with such close contact to the Earth.  Instead of the builder placing the home under the ground, he or she brings the earth up, so to speak, to cover the outside walls of the dwelling. In some cases, the roof has a layer of soil on top of it, too, which turns the earth berm home into an earth sheltered home. In all cases, the earth is tightly packed and sloped so there is little risk of erosion and drainage is not compromised. Earth berm homes (earth sheltered homes) have many benefits to both the homeowner and the planet.

Check out Betty's Berm home


 Beautiful succulent plants planted on the roof. 
Imagine how they will spread over time and how beautiful they will be! 

 Up on the rooftop!

Betty is full of life and wonderful stories.  Having traveled a great deal, she is yet another steppingstone along my journey sharing travel insights and inspirational stories of her life journeys.  Betty worked on reservations teaching reading to Navaho children for four years in the mid 90's and Pueblo children from 2000-2010.  She also owned and operated a restaurant named Consetta's  in Jemez Springs, New Mexico from 2000-2008.  However did she teach full-time and run a restaurant?  Yikes!

Betty has two wwoofers who have been here since August Nate & Chelsea, who are studying for their master degrees at Oklahoma University. I discovered that they met in the 4th grade and were recently married Nate & Chelsea, like so many of us, have dreams that overflow. Life is so full of  ventures and choices. After completing school, one of their dreams is to grow a sustainable community with friends.  being around their world traveled vibrant energy is most definitely energizing me!  Thanks you two!  And thanks for the wonderful down the road potential contacts too!

The Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm inside of me loves animals and misses my dear friends Sancho (donkey) and Maya (black lab) in Connecticut,  and so it pleases me greatly to be among animals again.  Below are some photos of the tribe:

Duke the watchdog, other dogs: Kudo, Mojava, and Wiser, Daisy Mae the goat (three other goats not pictured below presently at the breeder are Tricia, Nancy and Annabelle), roosters, hens and ducks. Two of the ducks have names thus far (Moe and Nibbles), Angora bunny Jasper...


12/27/12 - Navigating out of Arkansas was a bit of a challenge.  Somehow I managed to end up in a sleezy looking part of town. My heart started racing with panic wondering...
"however did I get here?"  and more importantly..."why am I here?" My handy dandy GPS has led me astray!  In that moment, I heard spirit whisper, "it's OK, you are exactly where you are meant to be.  You are here so that you can see how different people live.  All of a sudden the fear and separation subsided and the Power of Oneness took over.  I was then able to get out of my car to interact with the locals asking for help with directions. After the fact, I realized there was nothing to fear, only my perspective which reflected separation.

It was stunning 6-1/2 hr. drive from Arkansas to Oklahoma!  As I entered into Oklahoma, I began passing road signs indicating numerous native tribe names, inspired to do some internet research and learned the following sad facts:
Oklahoma was designated by the US government as "Indian territory." This was part of the American policy of Indian Removal. Some eastern and mid-western tribes signed treaties agreeing to move onto reservations in Oklahoma (and Kansas) in exchange for undisputed ownership of the new lands. Other tribes refused or resisted and were forcibly moved into Oklahoma by the US Army. 

The original inhabitants of the area that is now Oklahoma include:

Plains Apache, Arapaho, Caddo, Comanche, Kiowa, Osage, Wichita

Indian tribes relocated into Oklahoma by the US government:

Arapaho, Cayuga, Cherokee, Cheyenne, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, Delaware, Ioway, Kaw, Kickapoo, Miami/Peoria, Missouria-Otoe, Modoc, Ottawa, Pawnee, Ponca, Potawatomi, Quapaw, Sac and Fox, Seneca, Shawnee, Wyandotte, Tonkawa, Yuchi

Here are a few pics of my entry into Oklahoma 

Ah yes...those gorgeous on the road sunsets!


I arrived in Oklahoma 1/2 hr. after sunset 
welcomed by the Full Moon ....

...followed by a friendly greeting by Betty, Nate and Chelsea
a bowl of warm yummy soup
and homemade bread
 (the real thing without a bread machine).

Ready now for a good night's sleep.
10/27/12 - Still feeling a strong connection with Manataka from the night before, I decided to visit Hot Springs National Park. 

"The word Manataka has many beginnings, but has only one origin.  
The word Manataka has many definitions, but has only one meaning.
The word Manataka is spoken in many languages, but is of one people."
(More about Manataka below

Drove up the mountain to the Bell Tower conservatory to discover that it was way too commercial a scene for me, so then I headed down the mountain to explore the foot paths leading into the park's trails. Because of time constraints in honoring my desire to get on the road to arrive in Oklahoma before dark, I walked only a short ways into the park and realized I wouldn't be able to spend more than 15 minutes there.  I almost talked myself out of going altogether and just head back to my car, but the magnetic pull to to progress into the park was too strong to ignore. 
As I did so, I suddenly felt the presence of spirit guiding me away from the trodden path into a slightly hidden and somewhat private area.
on the other side of this stone wall

Mesmerized by the mineral vapors rising, 


I heard spirit's voice,
"come crouch down here to commune with the Spirit of Manataka."
I walked around, stabilized my footing and settled onto a small rock ledge. 

  the vapors grew stronger clouding my vision
  enveloped in the power of the mineral vapors
Spirit said, "come closer" - breathe in as deeply as you can.
Listen closely, receive Manataka's messages and the healing for your body.
I leaned over as much as I could looking down into the pit below me
from which the vapors were rising.


- It suddenly occurred to me -
I was getting my very own private steam bath
not from the bathhouses, but directly from mama earth
and it felt so good.

(a couple walked by offering to take a photo)

Communing Deeply
 The messages imparted to me from Manataka
were very powerful and a blessing to have received.
Immediately following I felt a stronger, deeper, and fuller connection
with all that I AM and deeply cleansed.

This is a photo I took of myself deeply ingesting Manataka.
Different than the photo before this one, which is a view taken outside myself,
this photo feels like the experience I had from the inside out.

More about Manataka:
 The word Manataka means the "Unbroken Circle"
It was Apache Grandmother Napanee Henrietta Gray Horse who came to Manataka (Hot Springs) in 1927 at age 14 that first told this writer that the name of this these sacred grounds was Manataka. Napanee was the young wife of Chiricahua Chief Benito Altaha Gray Horse. She made her home with Benito in Gulpha Gorge at the foot of the great Manataka mountain until sometime after he stepped  over the stream of life in 1945.  Napanee then built a small shack on the mountain off Sleepy Valley Road and that is where we met years later when she wore white hair and was bent with age.  While among dominant society, Napanee did not use her English first name "Louise" but preferred her middle name, Henrietta that she pronounced it Eh-ni-eeta.   Over a period of several years, Napanee told us many stories about her life with Benito and things she had learned from him, other Indians and spiritual elders who often came to pray at the sacred mountain. Our first discussion about the name of the sacred Valley of the Vapors, began with the words she used to describe water.  We found it curious that she referred to the hot springs that flowed on the other side of the mountain as No-waa-sal-on - Breath of Healing and also called the cold-water stream that flowed in front of her home by the same name.  At the time we thought the name Nowaasalon was a fitting name for the hot waters because the meaning of the word obviously referred to the vapors that escaped from the hot springs -- but the cold water stream emitted no steam -- or Breath of Healings usual, it seemed like an eternity before she answered our question.  We learned it was best to remain patient and respectful while waiting for an answer, even though this wise elder sometimes did not respond to my incessant questions for weeks.  After staring into my eyes for several minutes she responded, "...One of the seven waters of this [cold- water] stream comes from a place of great healing within the Earth Mother...  The other waters [hot springs] heal the body, but these waters heal the spirit," she said.  After a lengthy discussion over a period of several days about how the waters heal the body and spirit, Napanee spoke about the names of other places around the area.  Napanee Louise Henrietta Gray Horse was one of our teachers and guides. The second person to tell us the name of this sacred valley is Manataka was Marcus Phillips, who many years later wrote the "Indian Folk Lore Atlas of Hot Springs National Park" and at age 90 is the current president of the Hot Springs Historical Society.   Marcus was formally adopted by the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma in 1991 and later honored by the Choctaw Nation for his work to preserve American Indian history at Hot Springs.  
According to Mr. Phillips, the area of the hot springs was given the name Manataka hundreds, if not thousands of years ago by the people who first discovered this sacred site and long before the first modern tribes of the Caddo, Quapaw, Tunica and Shawnee wandered into this area.  Phillips says, "...Words like Manataka and Nowaasalon became widely used by the many travelers who regularly visited the hot springs."  Mr. Phillips is not certain of the name of the tribe who first named this site Manataka, but is confident that the meaning of the word is the "Place of Peace." 

For the road, I filled up my two drinking canteens with piping hot healing mineral waters. 

 I am now complete and ready to be on my way.