Monday, December 23, 2013

Do you celebrate solstice?

Winter Solstice is my time to contemplate the past; celebrate my successes; glean a few lessons from my failures; and set a few goals, née, resolutions, for the year ahead.  Darkest night behind me, Sunday morning I brewed a pot of tea instead of20120826-214538.jpgcoffee; I set some sage to smoldering beside the candles on the altar and lit one candle in every room around my home; I open a new journal to page 1; and begin to plan for the coming year. 

perle sherri mmdd 2
This year’s solstice, at least in part, was spent at various parties amidst friends.  By day, I began an early spring cleaning/rearranging of my studio/office (aka my aerie).  By night I enjoyed the festive mingling and conversations with friends; listening to live music, over-indulging in good food and wine. 

Still, however late I arrived home on Friday and Saturday evenings, I lit the candles that I had set out before leaving the house and recited my annual evocation, née petition, née spell, for prophetic dreams of the path that lies ahead of me for the coming year.

I am one with the uni verse – See me.
Let me slip easily into the stream of time – Hear me.
Let me acknowledge my past, and accept my now – Help me.
Let me see in dream a little of my path ahead – Grant me.
That given time to contemplate, I may make better choices – Guide me.
As I give myself up to the ‘I am’ and slip into dream. Protect me.
So mote it be.
candles 5

Thursday, December 19, 2013

I Once Thought 65 Was Really Old.

At 5, I remember thinking 65 was really old.  Now, at 64, my jet black hair a memory, and my 65th birthday just around the corner - not so much.

I am sometimes utterly amazed that I’ve been on this planet so long, as I’ve always been one of those people others say ‘burns the candle at both ends.’ 

Lately, I’ve been pondering the next 3rd of my life.  Yes, I think I’ll make it perle s 2to ninety-something, but not as some doughy old lady.

I can’t prevent getting old, but I can certainly prevent being a fat, infirm, old person.  A very real danger if I don’t begin doing something about it now.

Somewhere around 58, I started slipping, and I can’t really put my finger on any one reason.  I’ve been 128 pounds/size 7 with an occasional foray into 5’s (stress) as long as I can remember.
I think it was a combination – a not-so-perfect storm:  A sedentary job at Saks I knew would end in lay-offs, as the company was slowly divesting itself of all its properties; menopause that although symptomless in my case, slowed my metabolism; eight months on unemployment followed 6 months later by another year on unemployment; and finally, meniscus knee surgery that kept me from walking my morning 5 miles.

I’ve been looking at the scale for a while now and I don’t like what it says.  I look in the mirror and it confirms the numbers – 50 pounds in 6 years.

I’ve never dieted.  Not sure I know how.  In truth, I don’t think it’s about food.  I kept a diary and I eat about 1200 calories a day.  I think it’s the happy hours with friends – all those gratuitous calories in beer, wine, etc.

What Now?

Monday, December 2, 2013

Yes, You Can Publish from Your Journal

For me, my journal is the running memoir of my life, my confidant, Wailing Wall, canvas for creative thoughts, and so much more.  Most of the essays, remembrances and poems that I’ve published sprang almost full blown from the pages of my daily journal.

I belong to a few writers’ groups; have many writer friends and acquaintances; and whenever I say,
“Oh that piece.  It’s from my journal.”  I’ve been answering the questions for years and recently a friend encouraged to put it in a e-book.  Publishing has changed and anyone (for good or ill) can publish to Amazon’s Kindle platform for free.

Writing How to Journal and How to Publish from your Journal was the easy part.  I’ve been journaling more and more with an eye toward publishing. 

Formatting the book to upload to Amazon was the stumbling block for me.  Fortunately, I found an easy and inexpensive software (The Ultimate EBook Creator) with great tutorials and I was off, and I found a great tutorial by a published author on how to create great book covers using PowerPoint. 

Here it is:

Amazon is running a 7-day promo on it starting at 99¢ for the next 15 hours and rising in $1 increments back to the original sale price of $9.99.  

I’m hoping at 99¢, some more folks will check it out and give me some feedback.