Sunday, April 28, 2013

Blessed Sundays

Dear Friends:

I know I am a day late.  I usually write on Saturdays.   I'm trying to be consistent, not just with this blog but in other areas of my life that need some solidity.  Yesterday was such a day that would not allow a quiet moment at the computer, so my Blessed Sunday is right now, here, with you.

I would imagine that we are comfortable, the sun baking the sand on the private beach outside the patio doors. Soft Italian words are drifting up from the neighbours balcony's.  One couple is hoping to move soon, tired of the quiet seaside, looking for more stimulation in their lives.  I would say they're in their 20's.  Another neighbour of mine is a lonely bachelor of 50 who has ound himself divorced and living in a a small apartment by the ocean, not quite sure what to do with his time, his heart, or the realization that he must start over mid-point in his life.

There is a Still Point that comes in one's life where you find no music, no melody, just silent rest.  It might appear that the song is over.  You've hit the end of the bar and have nothing left to offer.  This is not the case.  I had come to such a point.  Its a delightful revelation to find that this is just a rest before the next melody begins.  Its the Still Point where you wait patiently, knowing the music will start again in your life and you may discover a song that is more beautiful than the bars before.  This is good.  Be at peace.  Rest.  Wait.  Don't fret!!  It's not the end, its like the dew that settles on the grass when the temperature drops and air becomes still.  Anticipate the blessing that is coming.  For when it becomes still, there is only peaceful rest that precedes the crescendo rise of refreshing notes, which carries you towards a destined path of abundance, should you choose to accept it.

I was told recently that I have much to say and tend to rush towards it.  This may be true. I desire my words to be a reflection of my heart that serves others in encouragement, truth and edification.  For what better purpose can there be for word but this?  

If you find I am relentless in this, so be it!  I revel in the joy of writing and acknowledge those who understand this restless muse.  There are Saturdays to write about important things.....

Then there are Blessed Sundays, where the soul sits in the Still Point of waiting for the next breathe to exhale.  I pray that breath comes from deep in our bellies and will resonate within us so rich, we will long to share it with others.

Until next time,

Lady Jane

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Transcendance in the Dining Room

Hello my friends.  Do you have your coffee ready?  I can give you a minute if you need it.

While we wait, I wonder if you all knew I lived with 12 other people?!  Not here in the Italian loft, this is my sanctuary just for us, but back home, where I daily work through the true essence of living.  I would love to tell you all about them, for each family member has given me a mirrored image of the "beautiful ugly" within myself.  Do you know what I mean by that?  Even in those deep scarred places where we want to hide away and not look to closely, there is a beauty that shines through, if we let it.

You're good to go now?  Excellent!  We can't really sit and chat without some kind of delicious aroma wafting into our senses, as far as I'm concerned!  I thought about going down the old cobbled street outside my seaside door to Francesca, my local baker, to pick up the most amazing cheese buns for us to sample, but felt prudence was needed this morning.  I have been sick this past week, and didn't think my constitution could handle the onslaught of yeast!

I have just finished reading through an interesting book called "Yearning for More.  What Our Longings Tell Us About God and Ourselves" by Barry Morrow.  His writing sinks deep into the philosophy of how our disenchantment with our lives is evidence of another reality for which we were created for.  He tries to move the reader from a shallow state of easy existence  to "signals of transcendence" all around us; in our hatred of death, our desire for heaven and even the humdrum of daily living. (Don't you love this kind of stuff?!!  OK, I realize this may be a big much for Saturday morning, but if you lived in my head for even a moment, you would take pity and join me in the abyss!)

In Chapter 5, "Celebrating the Daily Humdrum", he touches on Different Rooms in the Sacred House.  How do we really transcend, even in our homes, with our kids, in the dishes, the socks and cat litter?  As he goes through each room, he comes to the Dining Room, and my "spidey" senses start to tingle!  Here's what he says about our F&B experience, if we would chose to transcend the simple task of eating.

"Perhaps behind the activity of eating is the picture of community and fellowship with one another.  When we set apart the business of eating from the rest of the household functions and approach it as the occasion when men, women and children gather together, is this not a gathering together to enact our common  humanness?  When we think about the most joyful occasions of our lives, were they not frequently focused around dining with close friends and relatives?  Is there not an almost sacred aspect to these gatherings?  Is there any surprise that most of the major religions of the world include eating as a central element in their faith?  Do these gatherings not in fact resemble Holy feasts?"

Hmmmmm.  So if that is not happening in our homes, what are we gathering for?  What is the sacred we come together on and share in our humanness?  Food for thought.

I realize this entry was long and for that I could apologize......but I won't, because the F&B for the Soul can be a deep cavern that only the brave might enter at their own risk.

Until Next Time,

Lady Jane

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Relationships Around the Table

Morning.  (I was going to put an exclamation mark behind this, but for all those of you who read this at 11:15 under bleary eye, sipping on your first cup of strong java, instead of 7:24 am real time, it means you might not appreciate my sunrise exuberance)

I was awake at 6:11.  Actually earlier because I had awoken, but then HAD to stay ensconced in my delicious bed as long as possible, before it became too painful to imagine all the fun things I was going to do today and just lie there staring at the first hind of dawn outside my curtains! (there, I had to do it)  Thank goodness there was a drop of coffee in the maker to kick-start the word flow.

I took this photo in Canmore, when the Baroness and I went for our first lunch, to kick off my St. Patrick's Day birthday weekend in the Rockies.  I have grown to love Canmore more and more, as I sample its hidden treasures, especially the food.  This homemade Buffalo Burger with Pommes Frites & Aioli at the O Bistro did not disappoint.  I had been to Canmore many times, but lately its become a whole new world opened up to me that keeps calling me back.  For many of you dearest to my heart, you know that Banff has always held my soul in the rocks of the Banff Springs Hotel, but Canmore is slowly wooing me over. (Shoes t'Boot, where you find the most amazing Italian shoes, also entices me along)

I was also caught up in the ecstasy of pasta at Luna Blue, with the Linguine Wild whole wheat pasta dish with white wine cream sauce, and topped off with grilled pork tenderloin.  Oh MY!  (that was for another lunch excursion, I might add.  Who needs to wait for supper to enjoy pasta?  Certainly not me)  Debbie, our server, was delightful, thoughtful, and enjoyed getting to know why we were there, not just what we desired to eat.

These two memories makes me think of how much we enjoy our relationships around the table.  My dearest Sista has been teaching me about the true definition of hospitality.  I tend to be more of a task master when it comes to serving and comfort, whereas my Sista sees the person behind the practical need and wants to come sit with them in their souls.  I guess this blog is partially because of her.  If I miss the true service of the heart & soul, then I have really missed the reason for hospitality, and have slipped back into my natural tendency for organizing and facilitating an event.  As much as this is needed to keep a good function running smoothly, the deepest craving for most of us, is the F&B of the soul; connecting to others who know and understand us.  Finding a soft place to sit and be vulnerable.  

Some day I hope to own such a place.  Not just on this screen, but an address you can all come and visit, put your feet up, have a coffee, tell your story, and rest your soul for a bit.

Until next time.

Lady Jane

Monday, April 8, 2013

What's in a Name?

Hello my friends;

I was reminded today, from a dear friend BP, that many of you may not know why I signed off my last entry with "Lady Jane".

This is a lovely story, so please grab your beverage (and lunch if you haven't eaten yet), tuck your feet up onto the couch and enjoy this story.

My very dearest (there is dear for those who know me well, but not as long as the VERY dearest) friend, the Baroness, who has stayed close beside me through many of my soulful excursions.  I feel I have grown up in her shadow, and now we are mirroring each other in our creative journey together.  This kind of friendship takes much nurturing, time and effort.  I know for a fact that there were many moments when she was to the point of exasperation with my niave viewpoint of my world, and how I was to live in it.  I wanted to keep the rose-coloured glasses on for as long as possible.

But, I digress.  That is for another delicious chat together.

So, as we woven the fabric of our relationship together, we discovered that we both shared a desire to portray a story that would play in the land of "one day".  She had already uncovered her dream of owning land and being like the Baroness of old English countrywoman, who ran their estates with dignity and grace.  At the time we began our dreaming, I was living in a house called Willow Lane Manor (technically only in my mind, but that was the very best place to imagine something, isn't it?) Besides, I was a lovely manor home that someone built for me and I cherished its very stones) and became Lady Jane of the Manor. Since then I have left my Manor and now I am the Lady of the Lake, but both have the same undercurrent of identity.  My middle name is Jane, and as with all the strong Jane's of old England (there are too many to recite right now), I felt I was destined to identify with those woman who ran and ruled their courts with grace and beauty.

Its only a sweet dream between us, but by identifying ourselves in this manner, we confirm that we know who we are deep down, even when our circumstances won't or haven't allowed the truth of it to be revealed.

Feel free to try it sometime.  If you could call yourself anyone, who would it be?  Then go a bit deeper into the story and ask yourself why?  What values, what truths, what grace, would this identify with you?  Because in there somewhere is a sparkle of who you have always wanted to be, and either have shut that part down to manage in the reality of your life, or have never allowed your innermost spirit to acknowledge it even exists.

Until next time,

Lady Jane

Saturday, April 6, 2013

WELCOME to my Sanctuary


I'm so glad you've joined me, on this first morning, of my excursion into the delectable tastes of the heart and soul.

What is F&B for the Soul, you ask?  Excellent question.

First, get your own cup of coffee, or tea, or beverage of your choice, because part of this blog will be sitting together enjoying our own unique food & beverage while we share ideas, thoughts, musings, that come from the deepest parts of who we are.

Imagine, if you will, we are sitting in an old, weather-worn eclectic loft room, just off the streets of a small Italian villiage in Tuscany.  Its early morning, and the sun has just started to shine through the ceiling-to-floor ancient glass patio doors that face out to the sea, with wisps of light white curtains blowing from the breeze that is squeezing through the door cracks.  We are comfortable, ensconced in my antique couches, putting our feet up on the new french chic coffee table I just bought at the flea market.  The smell of coffee combined with sea air fills our mouths, as we lean back and rest our heads against the soft woven fabric.

For today, we will just sit and drink deeply of the provisions and beauty around us, not needing much conversation.  This is, in fact, our first encounter together, and I want you to feel comfortable.

What is to come is up to us.  Photos, poems, random thoughts, recipes, whatever is edifying to our souls and brings hospitality to our hearts.

The purpose is to imagine each word we speak and thought we share brings sustenance to ourselves, and sends us off to our own worlds with something to offer others in the same way.

It's so good of you go come. I'm looking forward to our new beginnings and tales of old encounters that shape us more and more into divine messengers of unique and creative beings.

Until next time,

Lady Jane