Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Autumn's Pause

I've wanted to share an update for a long time now.
But see,  there were dance floors to shimmy on, 
and giant sequoias to gape at.
There were trails on which to get my shoes dusty
 And too many big moon nights, requiring the attention of my eyes.
There were hawks – darting in and out of the shadows of the trees that begged me to spot them.
There were meals to share, introductions to be made; glasses to clink.
There were old friends, who had to meet new.
There was Manzanita-scented air, inhaled deeply into my lungs.
And shooting stars, tallied from the bottom of Yosemite valley, my parents by my side.
And sure, there were moments where there was nothing at all.
But that’s what I needed.
Just a quiet corner, and the pleasure of visiting with people that didn't require an explanation.
There were scenarios where words were fumbled, and hearts ached.
Where I felt anger rise from my feet and heat up my cheeks.
And then of course, there were instances of the purest joy,
with honey-coated whispered words, so sweet and true.
There were simple moments, really.
But they were mine.
Happy Autumn, until we speak again, friends. 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

To August, With Love

I always write of August. 
Likely because it is my birthday month, 
it is August during which I am most nostalgic and reflective. 
I think of stretches of summer days
spent in Maine with my family, 
and long lazy weekends at the beach with girlfriends. 
I have great memories of swapping stories
and sipping beers with friends, 
late into the humidity of the night back east.
Of sun burnt skin, salt water kayaking and backyard lounging.
A friend recently told me, I often update Big Moon Sky in moments of worry, or apprehension.
And to some extent, this is true.
It is easier for me to process moments of worry through writing, 
and so the blog becomes an outlet for those instances.
But it's all shooting stars and sunshine in this post folks! 
image is my own
This summer has been a real slam dunk. 
A string of weekends up in Tahoe -
barbecuing at the base of the river, 
night skies so bright with stars,
 I have to pinch myself to believe its real. 
Dancing in Golden Gate Park with my little sister, 
with flowers in our hair.and smiles on our faces.
Days with my toes dangling from the edge of a boat, 
cheering on friends and clinking glasses towards the sun.
Sunday cocktails and home cooked meals, enjoyed in the backyard of friends.
Nights filled with music and spontaneity - a new feature in my world. 
And goats. So many goats. 
I am quite content these days. 
A steady sunbeam of happy. 
A constant stream of giggles.
And its the best. 
xo

Monday, June 30, 2014

Lessons From the Night Sky

My dad was visiting this past week; it was so fun having him here.
His trip was impromptu, and I didn't plan much, but we ended up doing  the coolest thing.
Every Saturday of a New Moon, Mt. Tamalpais hosts star gazers to check out the night sky through the astronomy club's telescopes.
This past Saturday was a clear, cool night
and eventually twilight started to give way,
and the stars began to pop.
We climbed a ladder to a giant telescope and saw a star mass-
a big cluster of millions of stars swirling around the sky.
We were shown a star that had burnt up and died -
leaving a hole in it's middle, clouded in a light blue hue. Sad.
We saw Scorpion's tail -
a constellation only visible in the summer months.
We peered through two different telescopes
to catch a glimpse of Saturn.
It looked like a little video game icon, but you could clearly see it's rings. Awesome.
We traced the outline of the Big Dipper and paused to stare at The North Star.
 Did you know, The North Star holds steady as the entire northern sky rotates around it?
I think that's so romantic. And amazing. That mighty North Star.
Waiting for the stars on top of Mt. Tam
Every few minutes, the astronomers would step in and readjust the lens and positioning of the telescopes.
So much movement, both in the sky and on earth, the stars and planets easily jump out of view.
My dad and I were speaking with one of the astronomers as the telescope was realigned,
and he said something that really struck me.
He remarked that we know so much about the ground we walk on,
and yet, the sky remains a mystery to so many people.
Rarely, do we ever look up.
And we should!
 Because it's the same sky up there, night after night.
If you ever feel a little lonely, take comfort in the fact that there is familiarity up above.
The same old smattering of stars, to help guide you on your way.
I thought a lot about this the remainder of the weekend.
There are so many things I am excited about in my life right now...
but simultaneously, these things bring confusion.
And there are variables that cloud my view.
It's hard to navigate, and I wish I had the patience of an astronomer.
But sometimes, just  like with the telescope, you have to let things settle a bit
before you can see what your looking for with a clear eye.
Happy star watching, friends.
xo





Monday, April 28, 2014

The Mighty Mountain Lion

Most friends are aware from firsthand experiences with me, that I have a huge appreciation for animal totems.  
I’m a hippie dippy believer that there is a deeper, symbolic meaning associated with animals, 
and that quite a bit of information related to our spiritual nature can be derived from any critter or creature that cross our paths: large or small, feathered, finned or furry.  
My parents and aunt challenge family members to consider what we are thinking about at the exact moment a circling hawk catches our eye, or what larger meaning is being represented by the grizzly bear in our dream. It’s powerful stuff!

I’d guess this curiosity sprung from my parents’ interest in Native American culture. Growing up in a historic colonial house in Connecticut, you’d likely be surprised to see all the Hopi Kachina dolls, beaded jackets and woven baskets in our home. 
My childhood dresser drawers and bookshelves are filled with old buttons showcasing Chief Joseph, tiny beaded Indian dolls and Zuni animal fetishes. 
(family collection) 
When my sisters and I were little, our  family vacations consisted of car rides through dusty deserts and red rocked canyons. And at the time, we found it all a bit goofy – can’t we just go to Club Med like everyone else in the 5th grade?! But with a little distance between the Arizona desert and myself, I realized a handful of years ago how lucky we were to grow up in a family that put a strong emphasis on respecting all living things. We were raised not only to appreciate nature, but also to learn from it.

This past weekend friends and I were up in the Sierras, closing up our winter ski lease. 
On our way to lunch, we saw a mountain lion. 
Guys – I know. I freaked. 

We couldn't be sure if our eyes deceived us, so we turned around and high tailed it back to where we saw him. He was gone by the time we got back to the sighting, but I peppered people with questions about mountain lions in the area, and we took to the Internet and confirmed what we saw. 
A rare spotting in North Lake - but saw one, we did. 
The message being sent through this animal  is a powerful and personal one – most applicable to me, is the reminder to act in a way that is true to self – and tune out the noise from others.

Here is what we can derive from seeing the mountain lion: “Be graceful and easy in all you do; build your courage and use it to follow your heart, not allowing others to control your actions. You must claim your leadership abilities and start down the path you know is right. Trust the process and live your life with pure integrity. Incorporate the courage, strength, integrity and power the mountain lion represents.” 

Amazing. 
Happy, Monday friends. 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Goodnight, Moon

Last night, I set out to chase the moon.  
I didn't know if the blood moon would live up to its name, and I didn't want to be disappointed.
But it did. And I wasn't.
The stars even got a little jealous of the magic of the moon last night,  because a couple of them decided to shoot across the sky – daring us to take our eyes off of the eclipse.
We had to cross the bridge and climb up through the fog to lasso it.
That pesky marine layer put up a good fight, but we ended up finding the perfect spot in a quiet little park at the base of the bay.
(image is my own)
Sky gazing can make you feel so small I suppose, when you start to think about the universe stretching on forever.  
But, it didn't make me feel insignificant at all.
Don’t laugh at me. But I felt really connected to the universe. Connected and curious.
And I felt a sort of comfort, thinking about all of the other people bundled up and bleary-eyed, craning their necks up to look at the exact same moon, at the exact same time, 
well passed our bedtimes.
This big old orange moon, commanding the attention of everyone’s eyes – gently pulling us in closer.
It’s kind of a nice thought, right?  
Wishing you the galaxy and beyond.

xo

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

With Arms Outstretched

Spriiiiiiiiing! 
The word itself sounds happy. And bouncy. And light.
Last night, I dreamt that piles of flowers
came pouring from the sky.
Big cheerful petals and blossoms. 
They fell gentle, on my chest. 
With arms outstretched, and up towards the sun:
This is how I welcome April.
(image is my own) 
Winter. 
You taught me lessons I never wanted to learn. 
Although, I am grateful that I did. 
You showed me the value of people. 
Who listened.
Without consequence or judgement. 
Without impatience or skepticism. 
They let words and worries tumble out of me, 
many of which had sour notes.
And they didn't rush to make things sweeter. 
Instead, they let me empty every last thought.
And slowly, 
this anchor I'd been dragging started to rust away. 
It makes me happy. And bouncy. And light. 
Happy Spring. 
xo






Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Adventure is Calling

My eyes need a sky full of stars,
my lungs, the deep inhale of sea salt air.
My legs crave the ache of a long day on a dusty trail.
And my skin, the comfort of the desert sun.
Once, I told my little sister that I wished I could go hug a saguaro.
Well, I would tomorrow if I could,
and tell all my secrets to the trees. 
I whispered some wishes to the bay today,
but it didn't quite wash away the nagging need for an adventure.
image unknown
If my grandma had been walking with me,
I am quite certain she'd give my hand a squeeze 
and pose the familiar question, 
'A penny for your thoughts?' 
Oof. So many. 
And so. It's time to plan a trip. 
One for mind, body and spirit. 
Adventure is calling, friends.
And I must go.
Stay tuned.
xo