Posts Tagged ‘Tania Marie’

A Strange, Synchronous Samhain Sojourn

David and I spent Thursday through Sunday in and around Indianapolis, during a time window originally set to spend with my sweet faery twin Tania Marie, her Dave and my David. Due to what have revealed themselves as very important and perfectly aligned changes in their travel plans, David and I agreed to switch around our scheduled trips. Instead of visiting my Aunt Kath and Uncle John around Autumn Equinox, we ended up meeting Tania and Dave in Madison, Wisconsin during a trip documented in Parts 1 and 2. That left this past long weekend for a trip to Indianapolis and nearby Fishers, Indiana, where my mom’s brother John, his wife Kath and my cousin, Tim live.

I mention the switch of trips, because Tania and Dave were eerily present during our entire time there. We kept seeing murals that reminded us of them, and David and I began “spoofing” their travels with photos of me on the “Indy economy version” of their year-long RV trip around the West and Upper Midwest of the US. I’ll share some of those photos here, but they’ll seem funnier if you’ve followed Tania’s spectacular photo chronicles of their adventures in the “Magick Bus.” The giggles began with a mountain goat sighting:

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They continued onward with a beautiful waterfall that we “hiked” to:

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Right after David texted Tania these photos, we decided to grab some Thai food, and what did my eyes spy, but a full on cosmic sync wink:

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As Tania recently announced, they’ve returned to Lake Tahoe, in part for bunny Cosmo, who sat at the center of our Autumnal celebrations all together, anchoring the “Cosmos” and just being the love bunny he is. What’s weird is that this bloodstone bunny Tania gave me years ago to commemorate her beloved Nestor, somehow hitched a ride in my toiletries bag, so we had Tania, Dave, the Magic(k) bus, and a bunny, popping up at the strangest times and places:img_0537

This proved significant as our journey unfolded, but I’ll let Tania decide how much and when to share of that piece, since Cosmo is her elder rabbit, wise companion, and her baby bunny. This Nestor statue has a habit of appearing and disappearing at significant times, though, so when it inexplicably showed up in my bag as I reached for a totally different item, I felt another jolt of synchronicity.

We’ll return to what Tania began to term the “spoooooookay” volume of (sometimes literal) signs and symbols, but I want to share some of the really cool things that David and I found in Indianapolis. He planned our itinerary, as he lived in Indy for a summer about 30 years ago and had places he wanted to see again, including the James Whitcomb Riley Museum Home and Visitor Center. James Whitcomb Riley was a prolific poet, artist, musician and beloved public figure who lived in the now historic Lockerbie neighborhood of Indianapolis. A lifelong bachelor, he did have a little poodle named Lockerbie who accompanied him throughout his later life.

Although I hold a Masters Degree in English Literature, I must confess that I had no idea who James Whitcomb Riley was. I focused primarily on literature from the other side of the Pond, and the only American lit I read tended to be written by ex-pat’s. I had no idea what to expect, but after touring the home and watching the video at the Visitor Center, I understand why he became so loved by Hoosiers.

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He wrote in “the country dialect” and captured an innocence that was fast fading as Indiana experienced exponential growth. The characters Raggedy Ann and Andy, as well as Little Orphan(t) Annie owe their original inspiration to James Whitcomb Riley.

The house includes beautiful 14-foot ceilings and all original furnishings. It also showcases some truly clever innovations that made this rented house Riley’s chosen location for reading, writing, and entertaining. Unusual features include: a rudimentary intercom system from the upstairs to the kitchen, a one-way upstairs window to allow the maid to see which salesmen were calling at the side door, a basement coal furnace, rain water collection, an attic cistern that allowed indoor plumbing, a (rather dangerous yet functional) hot water heater, passive heating above the kitchen, and a cardboard type wallpaper pressed and painted to look like ornately carved and polished wood. We thoroughly enjoyed our tour!

The next day, we went to Conner Prairie, a State Park that features historic buildings, a hot air balloon, early craftsmanship, interactive videos, as well as tour guides dressed in costume and fully acting out their 1816 parts. Not surprisingly, Conner Prairie attracts a lot of children. Our visit this Friday coincided with 1,200 schoolchildren visiting for the day, so it was very LOUD! We had watched a video about Conner Prairie, and it seemed so idyllic and quiet, like a journey back in time, so the noise gave me the same kind of double whammy overload I experienced at Turkey Run State Park, when I expected to find what Dana of The Druid’s Garden had described as “the most sacred woods [she’d] ever encountered. Period. Anywhere. Not just Indiana.” For the most part, Conner Prairie was loud, loud, loud, filled with shrieking, running kids that led us to ponder how we would have never been allowed to do that on a school field trip.

A few things we did particularly enjoy, though:

A woman my Uncle John calls “Curly Sue,” who, it turns out is a friend of his, had come in for an extra volunteer shift at the spinning center. She kept all the children (and us) completely spellbound with her demonstrations and descriptions of different sized spinning wheels for different types of yarns, natural dyes, and her tales of how she started a competitive fabric arts guild for children. She surprised us all when she explained how the boys’ group actually took first prize most often! In any case, we found her delightful, and it demonstrated how what had moments before been hooligans could suddenly turn into fascinated and attentive learners with the right authoritative and interested teacher.

We also loved how all the demonstrators of early crafts and skills remained in character, even talking about each other as characters, presumably with information gleaned from early letters. From the town doctor’s assistant to the uppity woman from “big city” Lexington, Kentucky, we found these talks humorous and authentic. We also loved seeing the old string mattresses, fireplaces, and herbal apothecary:

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Later in the day, two unaccompanied young girls started trying to trick and tease one of the in-character workers, loudly baiting him to slip out of character and talk about “pop” and other later inventions. We watched in amusement turned amazement as this stern 1816 cartographer and explorer very firmly disciplined them with words, busting them on “wasting his time” and “asking questions they already know the answers to.” The girls went from quite bratty and disrespectful to fully engaged and interested in his story. David and I noted a lesson in here somewhere: today’s iPod and TV addled youth could return quite quickly to full attention, given the right guidance and firm expectation that they can pay attention and learn at a rigorous pace.

We also thought Conner Prairie did a great job showing a balanced view of Indiana’s deeply troubled history. The William Conner House, for example,  gives a history of William Conner’s double lives: first as a frontiersman who married a Lenape woman and fathered six children, and then as a prominent white settler who helped usher all the Lenape out of Indiana –including his wife and children — only to marry a young woman just months later and then father another twelve white children while helping to found Prairietown. Interactive displays ask viewers to consider the many difficult moral choices Conner faced and to vote on whether he was a hero, an opportunistic jerk or somewhere in between. The Indians get fair treatment in all these videos, and you can’t help feeling deep compassion and solemnity when recognizing just how Indiana became a state. (We saw a similar trend the following day when we visited the Indiana State Museum’s “Indiana in 200 Objects” exhibit in honor of Indiana’s bicentennial.)

In and around our historical tours, we did some fabulous eating. Our favorite was Ezra’s Enlightened Cafe in the Broad Ripple neighborhood:

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This tiny but busy spot offers both raw vegan and cooked vegan dishes, as well as fresh juices, healing tonics, kombucha and a variety of raw vegan desserts and superfood treats. We had chocolate hazelnut torte and a superfood Reishi brownie on Thursday, since we arrived after the kitchen closed. On Saturday, we returned for lunch and had a fresh green juice, followed by an angel reading at The Playful Soul metaphysical shop next door, and then we shared a “Buddha bowl” and a slice of delicious raw vegan pizza on a nut crust. We discovered the reason for the extra yummy factor:

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Ezra’s Organic Farm provides most of the food for Ezra’s Enlightened Cafe. They also offer CSA’s and prepared food for the week. Total yum. It reminded me of some of my favorite raw spots in Sedona and California. Having the Playful Soul right next door allows a high vibe experience for body, mind and soul. We enjoyed the angel reading with Brian. I almost never get readings but felt led to on that day of enhanced synchronicities. We also got some unusual stones the likes of which we’d never seen or heard of before.

After lunch on Saturday, we made our way downtown to the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indian and Western Art, where David had noticed they’d be hosting a Dia de los Muertos celebration. We didn’t know what to expect, but since it was the weekend before Samhain, we figured we’d check it out before heading to the Indiana State Museum next door. Due to the festival, we got free parking and admission, and our visit quickly turned surreal with the combination of full on celebration, mostly in Spanish. We saw traditional altars created by schoolchildren, as well as organizations in memory of the dead. We’re talking a huge room full of major decorations, letters, mementos and more, with very respectful Hispanic children making their way around each altar with their parents.

Further down the hall, we ducked into some exhibits and the Tania and Dave travel spoofing kicked into high gear. We made a whirlwind tour of Sedona, the Grand Canyon, magical forests, and snowcapped mountains, just like Tania and Dave. Well, almost:

We even saw a buffalo, just like Tania and Dave:

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After our adventure at Eiteljorg, we took a chocolate break and then wandered into the Indiana State Museum, where David wanted to view the “Indiana in 200 Objects” bicentennial exhibit. We did not expect even more Dia de lost Muertos celebrations there, but we found full on skeleton faces with flamenco dresses, dancers, and music. It almost felt eerily like the beginning scene in the James Bond film, Spectre. As we moved into the actual exhibit, another buffalo greeted us:

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The double sighting of these buffalo seems especially synchronous, potent and poignant given the recent buffalo stampede as answered prayer to the thousands of Native Americans attempting to stop the pipeline from being built on their land. After days of learning even more about Indiana’s horrible treatment of Indians, the current events with the Standing Rock Sioux remind us that some battles continue to rage. Having seen the results of Indiana’s “triumph” over the natives, perhaps we will all send extra supportive energy to this important fight out West. I know I am.

Great Spirit is listening: “… [I]n the midst of mass arrests, mace attacks, and beatings from batons, a stampede of bison suddenly appeared near the Standing Rock protest camp. A cry of joy reportedly erupted from the Standing Rock Sioux, as they had been praying for assistance from the Tatanka Oyate during their standoff with riot police and national guardsmen.” Huge blessings and gratitude to those on the front lines for Mother Earth and Sovereignty of the Land!

The rest of the 200 objects tour was highly informative, yet also eerie in its focus on death, change, Light and Shadow. Our trip through the exhibit began to feel like a sacred Samhain ritual, and the synchronicities between Tania and me ramped up even more. Right after seeing a sign depicting the Four Elements, I took this picture of a saber toothed cat:

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The rail road sign behind the cat not only links our Goshen locale with its close proximity to trains, but the rail road in question is the Madison-Indianapolis Rail Road, thereby linking our Madison and Indianapolis trips. This was like an over the top whoa moment, as we continued moving through this darkened and somewhat spooky catalog of famous people,  items, inventions and events in Indiana history. To the right, you can see the state’s electric chair. Who needs haunted houses for Halloween scares?!

Signs scattered around the displays, offering philosophical commentaries that took on larger meaning in context of the layered connections Tania and I had been sharing throughout that morning and afternoon. This sign in particular arrived at just the right, confirming moment for Tania:

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We continued on, and David found Johnny Appleseed’s drinking flask, which appeared after having told my aunt and uncle the night before that I was the Johnny Appleseed of Goshen:

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We also saw markers for Indiana authors like the amazing Gene Stratton Porter, whose Limberlost home we visited on my birthday, and whom I realized on that day was THE huge inspiration for Grandma Van and her magical adventures with birds:

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We looked at several other exhibits in the Indiana State Museum, including this giant pendulum:

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It being two days before Samhain, I figured we ought to take a walk outside on the canal behind the museums, since my Uncle John and my now departed father walked there for an afternoon when my parents visited in 2013. Apparently, my dad really loved the canal walk, and we found it a perfect afternoon for sauntering along. We also found it a perfect opportunity for more synchronicities to flood into our awareness! The angel reading had mentioned owls, hawks and several other animals, but with a particular discussion of paying attention to hawks. I had seen a hawk the day before and then on the way to the museum, but check out this beauty we found under a bridge!

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Knowing that Tania loves and often posts about hawks, we sent this snapshot to her, only to receive an “LOL, did you see I just posted about hawk wisdom?” Um, no, but why am I not surprised?! Here’s her Saturday post, “A Message from Hawk.”

David shot some photos of the canal walk to give a better idea of this vistas:

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By this time, the day had gotten away from us, so we decided to meet my aunt and uncle at the restaurant instead of heading back to their house first. My uncle had decided he wanted to take us out to one of their very favorite restaurants, Mama Carolla’s, which turned out to be very close to the neighborhood where David lived for his decades ago summer in Indy. We figured the Tania and Samhain themed bleedthrough’s would stop now, but wait, there’s more! We arrived to find the entire staff and restaurant completely decked out in Day of the Dead costumes and decorations:

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I put in my name, and our table became available just as my aunt, uncle and cousin walked in the door. Perfect timing! We sat down at the table, only to be greeted by a server in a banana costume, causing David and me to look as each other as we thought of “Banania,” our affectionate name for Tania.

Dinner was amazing! Every dish except the lasagna and ravioli can be made gluten-free, since they make it all to order. They offer vegetarian dishes, easily made vegan, too. We thoroughly enjoyed the food, the music and our conversations, as we also caught up with my cousin Tim, whom I had not seen for almost 30 years. We wound down our trip by watching the Cubs-Indians World Series and noting that “Take me out to the ball game” was composed by an Indiana native. Indeed, we are now filled to the brim with facts about Indiana originals!

The visit ended all too soon, as we toured their backyard and then packed the car on Sunday. David took this selfie of Aunt Kath, Uncle John and us, just before we left:

img_5792We had so much fun that we will definitely return! We barely scratched the surface of vegan food options and activities around Indianapolis, and we so enjoyed hanging out with John and Kath. With all the Fall colors and varied weather, it was a perfect way to usher in another Turn of the Wheel of the Year.

Wishing everyone a Happy Halloween, Blessed Samhain, and a Spooky All Hallow’s Eve!

Tania Marie and Me: Equinox Visit and Cosmic Adventures with Our D’s ~ Part 2

Continuing on from where we left off in Part 1, Tania Marie, our Dave/David’s and I found ourselves at Cave of the Mounds — a stunning, prehistoric, subterranean world, carefully preserved since its discovery in 1939. You can see just a small selection of David’s photos from our guided tour below:

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Someone kindly managed to snap a photo of the four of us, quite the feat with everything either pitch black or brilliantly highlighted:

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Above ground we found butterfly and herb gardens, the top of a huge sinkhole we saw from below, and various trails “through time.” David caught Tania and me hamming it up as we “stopped to smell the roses.”

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After Cave of the Mounds, we faeries couldn’t resist going to nearby Mount Horeb, “the troll capital of the world!” Here we are on Trollcam, showing off Tania’s matching key tattoo:

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Since he missed our prehistoric peeps photo, we asked David to rest with us awhile on this kindly troll’s bench:

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Afterwards, we did some shopping, and then look who we saw on our way back home:

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We returned to their “Magick Bus” RV, where the guys took a Wisconsin brew break with New Glarus Indigenous IPA, while Tania and I enjoyed Live soda flavored kombuchas. Who knew cola and root beer could be so healthy?! Vegan pizza and salads followed at Roman Candle Pizzeria.

With our time together winding to a close, we realized we had not gotten any photos of baby Cosmo with “Auntie Laura,” so we all gathered again at the Magick Bus the next morning. Tania made smoothies from the greens I’d harvested from our garden, and we spent quality time with the world’s snuggliest rabbit. You could call this photo T.L.C.:

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Our 11 a.m. checkout time loomed near, so we said our goodbye’s and headed our separate ways — Tania and Dave West to Iowa, and David and me to meet our Madison friends for lunch before heading East to Goshen. We’ve already got some ideas in the works for the next trip, but with the four of us very much in flux and synchronicity so obviously at play in our lives, time and sync winks will tell where and when we meet again. I was telling David on the way home just how grateful and lucky I feel to have such a loving romantic partnership with him and such a deep, beautiful friendship with Tania … and now we both know and love Tania’s Dave, as well. So much laughter and love:

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Tania Marie and Me: Equinox Visit and Cosmic Adventures with Our D’s ~ Part 1

Best friend and faery twin Tania Marie and I are never apart in spirit. We keep in nearly constant touch via anything from texts to telepathy, and even if we have longer times without contact, we find our lives have either synchronously paralleled or gone into exactly opposite complementary experiences. Our own mothers have mixed us up in photographs, and our lives really do seem like those stories of twins separated at birth.

We both have our North Nodes (Destiny) in Capricorn, and we both have David’s/Dave’s with Cancer North Nodes. We’re roughly the same size and height, and our haircuts seem to parallel each other. Tania’s a two-fish Pisces, and I’m a twin Gemini. Tania has a special needs bunny, and I have a special needs yard. When Tania and her Dave downsized last year to start full time RV living, I simultaneously upsized by renting the house next door as an office/classroom/guesthouse filled with my David’s parents’ furniture they needed to move out of their old house. Despite the miles between Tania and me, we often giggle to discover we’ve made the exact same thing for dinner, or that one of us is out shopping for the very ingredient the other one just chopped.

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All these long distance connections and synchronicities go into life-changing hyperdrive whenever life permits a fun and magickal in-person adventure. We went to the San Francisco Veg Fest Together in 2008 carrying bunny Nestor’s ashes and then learned about a bunny rescue that eventually led to Tania adopting Joy; I picked up her Joy with Tania and held her on their first road trip together; we’ve had many Cafe Gratitude binge fests where the waitresses actually looked under the table to see where we’d hidden all our food; we braved a spooky and synchronous Halloween 2008 in Bodega Bay with our friend Karen; have enjoyed multiple vegan Thanksgiving’s together; took a crazy, wild, and life-altering visit to Mendocino in 2009; did a silly, but potent faery reclamation of Chicago in 2010; and had a joyful reunion and birthday celebration in Goshen in 2015 when Tania first got to meet my David.

We’ve been planning this year’s gathering with “both our D’s” pretty much since Tania and her D took off in the RV. As timing and plans coalesced, we originally thought we’d meet over Samhain/Halloween as they drove East through Canada and then down through Michigan to Goshen, IN then wintering South and continuing their East Coast travels next Spring and Summer. These plans morphed all over the place until we finally decided to meet in Viroqua, WI on Autumn Equinox.

Yes, Wisconsin, the land of giant mice, cheese and brats:

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Readers of this blog might remember The Sunflower Saga, Synchronicity and the NAPC, the first time tried to go to Viroqua amidst massive redirection, dreams and another head injury. I tried a second time for David’s birthday this year, but life strongly rearranged itself to send us to Turkey Run State Park instead. Apparently, I have a “thing” with Viroqua — a strong pull accompanied by a major block. When making plans with Tania, I mentioned that I was still a little nervous about that location, even though I’ve always wanted to go there, but we reasoned that since I’d be there with both Tania and my David, I’d be fine.

And so we made our respective reservations. While I harvested and prepped food for an Equinox Feast, we all gathered and prepared various gifts for one another. The afternoon before our trip, just as Tania and Dave neared Viroqua, I felt a sudden “flood” of energy. It was so strong that it knocked me back onto the couch, even when I tried to get up. Whenever I thought of our trip, I felt this powerful force field of energy so strong that it felt like a rush of water pulling me deeper and deeper. I texted Tania to say, “Wow, really potent energy for our trip in Viroqua. Almost knocked me out.” Then I checked the weather there, only to find a “Flood Warning.”

Hmmm …. I texted her not to set up camp too close to the Kickapoo River, as it might overflow, but we continued with our plans. We figured the potent energy came more from the intentional ceremony we had planned for that evening, the first time all four of us would be together, with Tania’s bunny Cosmo anchoring the center of our Circle. I had copied, modified and highlighted an OBOD Alban Elfed ritual, so that the five of us could personify the four directions and “the cosmos.”

All proceeded according to plan until …

…what I’ve come to consider “my Viroqua hex” reared its powerful head again.

Early Equinox morning, I received hurried texts from Tania that she and Dave were being evacuated from their camp site. A flurry of texts and phone calls followed as I tried to see if they could stay in the parking lot by our hotel, but people on their end urged them to get out of town while they still could. “Mudslides and flash floods would make it impossible” for David and me to reach Viroqua, and the Sheriff advised Tania and Dave to go to Madison. I knew she had little signal, so I located a KOA in De Forest, WI, just north of Madison, and it turned out they had trailers for rent, as well as a site for T and D.

Originally, we would have been staying about twenty minutes apart since we could not find any accommodations capable of housing both parties. Our trailer option meant a very different sort of packing, but it also meant we would be about twenty yards instead of twenty minutes away from each other! It meant we could hang out with Tania and Dave in their “home on the road,” while David and I shared our homecoming to the place he and I first lived together. A place with loads of vegan food options. A place we both love and had planned to drive through on our way home anyway to have lunch with dear friends there. A place which increasingly seems to be some kind of Wheel of the Year vortex portal for us, as demonstrated further by our potent Winter Solstice 2015 in Madison.

In any case, our plans rapidly morphed, and the synchronicities suddenly catapulted into crazy high gear. All of us dodged potential injury or death that day, between the rising floods on T and D’s end, and a rogue white van suddenly crossing and stopping right in front of us on the highway. As the day continued, Tania and I began to feel forces strongly opposing our visit, while even stronger forces protected and redirected us to safe communion. We eventually arrived, quickly got settled and then gathered in their “Magick Bus,” where we did introductions, hugged, changed into fun “Equinox costumes,” held our little ceremony and then feasted on the garden fresh white scallop squash “faux”lenta, pesto, tomatoes, leafy greens, raspberries and Sun Oven Lammas brownies, I had brought. It was so yummy and love filled that we forgot to take any photos that night.

Tania and I noticed that we “floated for hours” in some kind of altered state as our guys slept. The next day, Tania received word from our friend Dawn that she also felt floaty and interdimensional that night. We all felt we crossed onto a different timeline or alternate reality, as things eerily fell into perfect alignment, despite all the sudden twists and turns. I received texts from others confirming similar sense of shifts the night of Autumn Equinox, so we’re curious if anyone has other info to share in the comments below.

On Friday, we toured some of our favorite spots in Madison, including Willy Street Co-Op, of special interest to my D and me for green juice, and to T’s D for … vegan scones and donuts! Oh, yes, Dave is not only a vegan author, speaker, and animal rights advocate but also quite the junk food vegan connoisseur! He kept us well supplied with goodies throughout our trip, a bit of a shock to my “just harvested from the garden” norm, but also a fun and welcome treat! We enjoyed chocolate bark, donuts, scones and lots of wonderful teas from his extensive collection. We took them to our much missed restaurants Himal Chuli and The Green Owl Cafe, as well as to Roman Candle Pizzeria for vegan pizza. Here we are below on our first full, crazy windy day there, overlooking Lake Mendota, on the UW Madison campus. The wind was so strong it started blowing off my jacket and shirt, but we did manage to snap this selfie before wandering into more sheltered woods:

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The whole trip continued to evolve moment-by-moment, and it seemed impossible to plan anything. Between road detours, missing emails, very specific weather guidelines, and more, we had no choice but to go with the flow. Saturday brought us to Cave of the Mounds, where we picnicked and then went on an amazing underground tour. I experienced such powerful and unshakeable déjà vu when we got there that I kept trying to explain it away by my early childhood visits to Pennsylvania’s Crystal Cave. The avalanche of synchronicities and slow motion time experience of our pre-tour time there convinced Tania and me that some other important time nexus or circular time event had arranged for us to be there right then. My David kept mentioning “the importance of getting you ladies deep inside the Earth so you can do whatever you need to do there.”

It truly was magical inside that ancient cave, but I’ll continue our adventure in Part 2.

Tania Marie Shares Her Peru Journey

My sweet faery twin Tania Marie and I are always so linked that I end up empathing much of her journeys, but I only see the sights in dreams until she posts her photos! One morning I commented to her that I hadn’t slept a wink due to extreme “Fire in the Head. I swear, when I close my eyes, it’s brighter than the Sun!”

I got an LOL back, as, unbeknownst to me, she and her shamanic crew had been doing a Sun ceremony the day before. Throughout her journey and continuing even through today, a very out of season black butterfly has been fluttering by the window on the north side of the house — the window I most often look through during sessions. I knew Tania was having butterfly synchronicities in Peru, including a black butterfly, but I didn’t realize the extent of magical butterfly action until I read today’s two posts.

Even if you opt not to read all the fascinating details, do yourself a favor and just bask in the powerful, rejuvenating beauty and energy of the photos. There are many ways to do Earth healing, and sacred ritual in sacred place is a powerful counterpoint to the day in, day out grit of digging in the dirt and planting trees. We need both. Recognizing and honoring the beauty that still exists on this planet reminds us of our connection to our Sacred Mother — of what a healed Earth looks and feels like — and why we need to give and receive in harmony.

Thanks and love, Tania!

Nokan Inti Kani ~ I Am the Sun: Our Sacred Journey to Peru Through My Eyes – PART 1

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Nokan Inti Kani ~ I Am the Sun: Our Sacred Journey to Peru Through My Eyes – PART 2

Tania Marie’s Epic Iceland Journey

I tried to reblog this post, and WordPress won’t let me. At over 15,000 words and so many photographs, perhaps it’s just too large to reblog. It’s too gorgeous not to share, though, so do click through if you’ve ever wanted to go to Iceland or if you just crave beauty, raw food, friendship, adventure and love.

On a personal note, Tania and I are always so linked, especially in faery or elven encounters, that while she was there, I kept dreaming of huge rock and ice landscapes with waterfalls and brilliantly colored pools, which she’d then tell me she had seen on the previous day’s journey. Synchronously, I also lost about five pounds that week, as did she with her 95-100% raw eating. My five pounds just wanted off, as my body insisted on much lighter eating that week. The funniest thing was that right after Tania and Kate Magic got stuck in the blacked out tower stairway, her phone auto-called me from Iceland. Given that Tania and I have had our own funny adventure in a tower in Chicago, we had a good giggle about mischievous Iceland elves.

Just to give you a taste of what she saw there, Tania included this video, but the Northern Lights were only part of an incredibly packed and timeless adventure. Much, much more here.

Blast from the Past

Last night, I texted my sweet, silly, favorite traveling buddy Tania Marie that she would “be happy because I gave myself bangs again.” I knew she’d get a kick out of that simple text, and sure enough, we both took a stroll down memory lane back to when she visited me in Chicago in 2010. For some bizarre reason, the first thing we did together after honoring my favorite tree on the shores of Lake Michigan that I visited every day while living there …

Tania Marie and me with "Tree" in 2010

Tania Marie and me with “Tree” in 2010

… was hack off part of my hair. We then spent the rest of the trip “reclaiming” Rockefeller, Draco, Egyptian and big bankster areas — a whirlwind faery giggle fest through some of the least likely spots you’d expect to find a faery.

The next day, we climbed all 271, windy steps to the top of Rockefeller Memorial Chapel:

At the top of Rockefeller Chapel in Chicago

At the top of Rockefeller Chapel in Chicago

and sat at the carillon to (pretend) play the bells:

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This photo always cracks us up, because Tania looks so hilariously buff, and I am clearly makin’ mischief.

The next day, began with bindi’s and fresh juice:

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… then we hit the University of Chicago’s Oriental Institute, causing a ripple giggle fest in the couple we asked to snap our photo:

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We can behave ourselves, though, too:

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We continued winding our way to the downtown area, where we had to visit “The Bean” …

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… which contorts and distorts in all sorts of funny ways when you look into it:

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Tania sent me the photos last night as we texted, because I had lost mine in a computer crash after I quit Facebook. We had to marvel at how many photos we took on the Chicago trip (hundreds) and not a one on our most magical Mendocino Adventure in 2009. I can’t believe it’s been nearly four years since T and I have hung out in person! Fun times from afar, but a visit elsewhere is long overdue …

Miles to go

Here’s to friendship, feasting, laughter, memories and more to come! Wishing everyone such fun. Happy Mercury Retrograde!

Creative Inspiration and Synchronicity

Of course, I shouldn’t feel surprised that my “faery-twin” friend Tania Marie just posted about her massive jolt of creative inspiration, as we always tend to mirror each others’ process. Tania’s recent post shares her journey and some fun photos and creativity quotes, which I decided to share here.

Like Tania, I’ve felt some big nudges lately to up the creativity quotient. After over a year and a half of not being able to practice yoga due to a sacrum injury, as of last week I can suddenly “do” yoga every single day. What relief, and what a flow of joy and creative juices. David and I have also been listening each night to the book on tape version of Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring. All the songs and magick had me itching to write a novel again, until last night I spontaneously started empathing Frodo’s shoulder injury, which reminded me that novel writing with all its inherent conflict to move the plot forward, isn’t exactly the kind of thing I’d love to create. If I wanted more conflict, I could just read the news or let my mind spin out on all manner of creative-destruction possibilities. Been there, done that … but the creative urge has grown very strong indeed.

Last night, David dug out a large blank canvas we found during our move. Time to paint a portal. I do love painting! Preferably doors, but any large canvas will do, especially since I already have a portal purpose for this one. Unlike novel writing, for me, painting expresses the freest opportunity to decide what I would most love to bring into being. I think this one will look like The World Tree on the surface, but I’m excited for all the Runic coding and delightful details I can add in and around the tree. Pulling several Faeries Oracle Cards this morning, followed by reading Tania’s post, just felt like winks and nods from the Universe: “Yep, Laura, roll up your sleeves and break out the colors. It’s time to paint your world!”

“Every day is an opportunity to be creative – the canvas is your mind, the brushes and colours are your thoughts and feelings, the panorama is your story, the complete picture is a work of art called, ‘my life’. Be careful what you put on the canvas of your mind today – it matters.” ~Innerspace

“To be creative means to be in love with life. You can be creative only if you love life enough that you want to enhance its beauty, you want to bring a little more music to it, a little more poetry to it, a little more dance to it.” ~Osho

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” ~Maya Angelou

“An artist paints, dances, draws, writes, designs, or acts at the expanding edge of consciousness. We press into the unknown rather than the known. This makes life lovely and lively.” ~Julia Cameron

“A truly creative person rids him or herself of all self-imposed limitations.” ~Gerald G. Jampolsky