Tag Archives: Empty Next

Bluebird of Happiness

I have a bluebird nesting box at the corner of my garden. Every spring, a pair of Eastern Bluebirds shows up around my birthday (a few weeks from now) to set up household. I don’t know if it’s the same pair every year, or even if they are offspring fledged from the nest the previous summer.

Bluebird

Sam watching me . . . watching him.

No matter, I named them after my maternal grandparents and each year, same pair or different, I welcome Sam and Betty back to the corner of my garden sanctuary. Then I sit back to watch the show of nest building, predator smack downs, food gathering and baby fledging.

Until this very moment, I’ve never questioned why I find so much joy in watching these birds in their dance of procreation. I think, maybe, it’s the reassurance they give that all is right with the world, that minus human weakness and drama, the earth keeps spinning and life continues on.

Who better to remind me not to sweat the small stuff than the harbinger of happiness? The association of the bluebird with the emotion of happiness is found in numerous cultures and dates back thousands of years, the oldest evidence being found on oracle bone inscriptions in pre-modern China. Interestingly enough, in the Tang Dynasty the bluebird evolved from a fierce goddess into a fairy queen, the protector of singing girls, novices, nuns, adepts and priestesses – women who dared to step out of traditional roles. Now that’s a legend the MAD Goddess can appreciate.Image

Happiness is based in many things including a feeling of contentment, fulfillment and purpose, in relationships and life circumstances.  In the traditional roles of women, we often spend more time and give more effort to ensuring others’ happiness; parents, partners and especially children. This isn’t to say we aren’t happy in doing so, but then one day, we find our nest empty and ourselves wondering, what next?

The empty next lies before you with all the promise of a new Spring, just waiting to be seeded with  your wildest dreams. How will you manifest your happiness and watch it grow in this second half of life?

If you are joining me in the *Dark Moon Lodge, we are stepping out and stepping into spring – the season of stirrings. We’re planting our seeds and nurturing our dreams into growth. You can find out more about the journey by clicking here (use the password darkmoon).

*When the moon is new, and associated with beginnings, growth and increase, it cannot be seen in the night sky – this is why it is also known as the dark moon – a void, not to be feared, but to be filled.


Spring Fever

Flapping About

Flapping About

I have been chasing spring these past few weeks, trying to catch up to Mother Nature’s coming out party wherever she may be making her debut.  Spring has been an elusive Diva, managing to stay always a few steps ahead of me.

In my wandering, I felt fortunate to spend some time where I was able to take early morning walks around a tranquil pond. The little oasis was frequented by area wildlife, including a rather large flock of Canadian geese, a family of ducks, numerous turtles, and a graceful, white egret.  I have more photos than I care to count of the geese and the ducks.  There are quite a few of the turtles sunning themselves, tucked close together on a fallen tree trunk. I even have several of the egret, though it was a tad camera shy.

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

One visitor to the pond was not as easy to capture – a Great Blue Heron.  I spotted him moving in the underbrush of the little island that sits in the center of the bowl, with about 50 yards of water between us. I moved along the curving rim of my shoreline, stepping slowly and as soundlessly as possible. He stepped cautiously in and out of the trees, always seeming to duck behind a broad trunk, moving out of the circle of my camera lense each time I thought I had a good shot. The best I got was this blurred image (he is holding a fish in his beak).

A few days ago, I left the lodgings on the edge of the little pond to set up camp a bit further south, still seeking the sunshine and warm weather I crave.  As soon as the stakes were pounded in and my lights were strung along the front of my traveling gypsy wagon I went for my customary lay-of-the-land walk.  There is always much to see when walking past the compact, wheeled homes of fellow travelers, each adorned (or not) to reflect the personalities of the occupants.

While I was gawking at colored lights, wind chimes, wind and sun catchers, and other yard ornaments including customary bird statuary (mostly, but not limited to, plastic flamingos) I came nearly beak to bellybutton with a very much living and breathing Great Blue Heron. After all the time spent stalking another that was clearly not ready for his close up, here was this bold bird standing right in front of me – and me without my camera!

Sometimes the things we chase seem stubbornly elusive, evading our best attempts to grasp and hold tight. I have traveled from the top of the country to it’s near bottom point in my pursuit of warm, spring weather and still it eludes me – a reminder that the law of attraction might be powerful but it does not override the laws of nature.

Laying the groundwork to achieve goals is all well and good. Still, we cannot forget that all things take time and sometimes we have to pause in our pursuit to let time unfold in its natural course. To everything there is a season.

But, like the Blue Heron who stepped to within my arm’s reach reminds me, we must always be prepared for the opportunity when it comes knocking on our door.

I’m off for my morning walk – this time with my camera.

If you are ready to start pursuing your purpose, passion and pizzazz in the second half
of life, join me,
the MAD Goddess, and your sister seekers in the Dark Moon Lodge
(password: darkmoon).
We are moving through the seasons of the year in a course of
personal development and life enrichment;
one step at a time using intentional
creativity in the Art of Self Expression© See you there!


When Dreams Have Been On Hold

I am in such a rare place in life; a truly sweet spot. There is no telling how long it will last so I want to enjoy it as much as I possibly can.

An artist whose work I admire posted this on her Facebook timeline a few days ago.

I play this game with life. It says, “What now?”
I say, “Something Amazing!” And then I watch.
It never disappoints.
~Marabeth Quin

Having been laid low more than a few time by life’s heartbreaks (personal loss, death, disappointments). I know that amazing isn’t always the order of the day. But it is always possible – even at the darkest moment.

My husband and I waited five years for his medically predicted loss in the battle against heart disease, and when it seemed the shadow of death was drawing ever nearer, when the risks of surgery were less than the risk of doing nothing, he surprised us all by beating the odds. He awoke from surgery to a second chance at life.  How amazing!

So now it is my turn to take my life off of hold, to again pursue my purpose and passion with a whole lot of pizzazz.  That feels amazing too.

Every day, things all around me are changing. Who would think that completing chores could be such a thrill? In five years time many things went undone, for my husband’s physical inability to do them and my emotional incapacity to do it all alone.

We had known “retirement” a bit earlier than most because of my husband’s disability – adjusting to him being home full time, also included adjusting to becoming a somewhat caretaker.  But now his heart is fixed, as his daughter says, and we are beginning a new journey in our lives.

As we embark life is asking us, “What next?” and I am answering with a resounding “Something amazing, please!”


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