Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Chinese New Year of the yellow Earth Dog

February 15, 2018, at 12:05 p.m. MST, begins the Chinese New Year of the yellow Earth Dog. 

The occasion also includes a solar eclipse.

As some of you know we used to partake of Lui Ming's annual talks. Several years ago he died and I so miss his wisdom and laughter to begin the Chinese New Year. Recently I have enjoyed Susan Levitt's enlightened views.

Our stellar Santa Fe, New Mexico realtor, now fast friend as well, sent a link to her Feng Shui teacher, Lillian Too. Check it out for more on the Chinese New Year.

Shasta is exhausted from all the preparations, sweeping, cleaning and generally putting belongings in their new places, for this Chinese New Year in our new Santa Fe, New Mexico home.

To let go of the bygone qi of the old year (purple Fire Phoenix, aka Rooster) may each of you join us as we 

Tuesday, January 23, 2018


"In the city, we see millions of lives represented 
in the windows, doors, and many floors of each building.
We see excitement and the glories of civilization.
But no matter how much those who follow Tao may enjoy the city,
they understand the need for retreat into nature.

In the countryside, they find the nurturing quality of freedom.
They can see new possibilities 
and can wander without societal impositions.
In the past, pioneers saw the open prairies
and were filled with dreams of dominating nature
with the glories of man.
Now we know different:
We must preserve the wilds for our own survival.

We need time to lie fallow.
If you cannot leave the city,
just find a little quiet time each day 
to withdraw into yourself.
If you are able to walk in fields or in the hills,
so much the better."
365 Tao: Daily Meditations by Deng Ming-Dao

Into the "the countryside" we wandered to enjoy the first real snowfall of the season here in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Of course, those of you who follow this blog knows this countryside is actually a 130 acre dog park. It is a place that allows humans to BE with nature and experience "new possibilities," thus BEingness and rejuvenation happens.

Walking down the arroyo in the quiet, such quiet provided by this snowfall overnight, one cannot help but feel the connection with Tao. We were not the first out into the arroyo but even the footprints left in the snow did not blunt the ever presence of Tao.

A treat for the eager dog!

And a playmate appears ready to romp with Shasta.

"Infinite Spirit, when I pray each day
for shelter for the homeless,
let me not ignore the pet without a home;

As I ask protection for those in areas
of turmoil and unrest,
let me not forget endangered species of life;

When I pray that the hungry be fed,
let me be mindful
that all[sentient BEings]have need of sustenance;

As I ask Divine assistance for those afflicted
by fire, flood, earthquake, storm or drought,
let me remember that this includes every living thing;

In seeking miracle cures for human disease,
may I also speak for the well-being of the planet [her]self.

Let the words of my mouth,
the meditation of my heart 
and the actions of my life be as one,
that I may live each day in harmony
with Mother Earth . . . .
Jennie Frost Butler

And as we live each day in harmony may we also 

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Flourishing in the "Land of Enchantment"

Stella's new license plate installed Saturday passed.

Slowly but surely we are chipping away at the lengthy "to do" list created for our transplanting and rerooting from rural West Sonoma County, California to
urban living in Santa Fe, New Mexico. One monumental marker was removing
two California plates from Stella and replacing them with a single, rear one
here in New Mexico. We chose the traditional plate with the same symbol that is on the New Mexico state flag.

As some of you know, finding and buying a house here in Santa Fe has been a stop and start, wait and see, letting go, starting again process. We thought in September we had found our new to us home but we fired the first buyers for MuRefuge so could not go ahead with the 1803 San Felipe Circle purchase. When the just right steward for MuRefuge put an offer on MuRefuge, we found this home was still on the market so we made a bid. Oh my gosh, this Stamm home had IRS liens so one escrow closing date then a second one passed. After the latter I came to my senses during one early morning sitting; I realized I was just not up to the renovation that was needed on this house. 

After terminating our first contract to buy on San Felipe Circle (we love the neighborhood and its inhabitants!), we refocused our attention to a newly rehabbed home just down the street: 1832 San Felipe Circle. Here is a link so you can see the state of the home when the present sellers bought it a bit over a year ago.

I am finding each waking moment, as I continue my rerooting process in Santa Fe, New Mexico, that I am deeply grateful for a "move in ready" aka "turn key" home. While I would not have done the remodeling and upgrades in quite the same fashion, this house feels comfortable, is clean and secure with lovely warm Wintery sunlight in each room. We are downsizing from just over 1800 square feet to barely 1200 square feet feet. This process feels "just right"; encouraging us to let go of more possessions thus freeing up more still psychic energy for rerooting and flourishing here in the high desert.

This "frame & stucco" Pueblo style, Stamm home was built in 1955. Stamm homes are renown for being well built with "state of the art" design for the post WWII era. We have been repeatedly told by numerous sources that these homes are in high demand and sell quickly once they appear on the real estate market. 

It feels absolutely wonderful to be purchasing a piece of Santa Fe history which allows us to take advantage of the "roots" established by previous owners. We trust that on January 26, 2018 (Shasta's Auntie T's birthday), the date for escrow closing, we will indeed own one of these sought after Stamm homes.

With each passing day all of us in Shasta's pack reroot in Santa Fe, New Mexico and

Saturday, January 6, 2018

The Time is Now to Step Up, Again

This design was created by Shasta's Auntie T
in Point Reyes Station, California, for
her annual New Year's haiku greeting.
It seems to so accurately depict
the zingy energy
that abounds these days.
The time is now for me to step up and join the momentum fueled by the #ME TOO movement by republishing a post that I removed from this blog in 2011. The movement is coming forward to deal with the oppression of patriarchy in our country. Women and other sentient BEings are not property to be owned by white males who consider themselves to be dominant rather than equal with all sentient BEings, each with innate value in and of themselves. 

The turmoil of the time brought forward by the 2016 election of Donald Trump has created an opportunity for monumental and much needed change in our country. Issues heretofore swept under the carpet are now exposed. This turmoil is affecting each and every one of us; and it is creating much discomfort among all peoples of our country. From this turmoil and discomfort a more just and inclusive cultural story can be created for our country IF we all take part and confront our own individual "demons" related to patriarchal dominance. 

So offering my own personal life experience starting with early infant trauma, again, is my commitment to support the shift from patriarchy to honoring all sentient BEings with equal measure.

Dwight and I opened MuRefuge to share my whole ecology garden with his many sculptures through the Second Annual Sebastopol Center for the Arts' Gardens with Sculptures.  Hundreds visited.  And what a surprise when I looked up to see Shelley standing nearby.

When we hugged, my reality tilted (have any of you had this experience?).  Grandma Haynes and I were hugging. And then I returned to MuRefuge talking to Shelley.  I was so happy to have family right there at MuRefuge since
remaining family is scattered all over the United States.  My sister and I are estranged, my oldest brother is no longer in his familiar physical form and my youngest brother living in a Kansas City suburb is very private.

Our Haynes’ aunts, uncles, parents and grandparents have all departed their bodies.  As sad and grieving as we have been of this generation’s passing, I for one am releasing the multigenerational dysfunction that has been passed to each of us through the spirit rebirth (genes is another way of saying this) over many, many, many, many years.

In Victorian times there was an epidemic of gonorrhea wide spread over much of the European continent.  At that time, there was not the knowledge of how gonorrhea was transmitted; now we know it is transmitted (by Neisseria gonorrhoeaethrough an infected penis. This secret and hidden practice or habit of oral sexual abuse of infants and small children arrived with our European settlers to this country.

When I got a divorce and before I was consciously aware of the horrific trauma that occurred in my infancy, I decided to legally change my name to my mother's maiden name because I did not want my father’s name. My father verbally and physically abused me when he lived with me and my siblings before my mother divorced him when I was sixteen.

The Universe aka Divine played a joke on me!  Or perhaps it was my personality’s habit that did? I did not have a clue at the time of the multigenerational and patriarchal deviant behavior on my mother's side of the family.

As I was advancing through nursing school, one Thanksgiving weekend when I was back on the farm with Mom, Steve and my siblings, we received a call that P.C., my mom's youngest brother, had shot himself.  As I talked on the phone to his wife, Nell, in El Paso, Texas, I heard a very quiet, gentle voice say, “you will eventually discover the ‘why’ for his action.”  After getting my nursing diploma I moved to El Paso where I lived a year. Interesting move . . . huh?

As I edit this removed post, I am aware of how cold I feel: fearful I am! And I

Many relocations, aka moves, later and BEing stuck, I found my way to Northern California knowing it was only a matter of time before I would no longer work as a registered nurse. My focus shifted from workaholism to finding and healing myself. The spirit of my Grandma Haynes visited me often, saying “Do your Work now so you don’t have to do it on your deathbed.”

In spite of this shift, I got what I call “the cosmic kick in the butt” to leave nursing, when one morning I could not make myself get out of bed to go to work.  Then deep Work began when I went to a weeklong laughter workshop in Santa Barbara with Annette Goodheart, a now passed psychologist specializing in laughter therapy and assisting those who have been sexually abused. During that week what had been locked in my unconscious became available to me, providing me with “the missing piece of the puzzle” for my healing work and access to body memories from my early, preverbal trauma.

When I was four, Grandpa Haynes tried to molest me.  I ran away from him for which my mother admonished me for “not loving my grandfather.”  Annette pointed out to me that a four year old who had not been previously sexually abused earlier would not have reacted as I did.  As she worked with me
body memories from age three to six months came forward.  My uncle P.C., who was living with my mom and me at the time, orally sexually abused me repeatedly. 

After many months of Work with Annette and for many years on my own, which included confronting my mother, I have been able to heal. My mother did not deny that sexual abuse had happened to me. And, although she exhibited many symptoms of the same abuse, she could not admit to what had been done to her. I did not need or want to traumatize her any further.

Part of my healing has included understanding P.C.’s despair around his father’s oral sexual abuse of himself and his repeating of this learned behavior.  In the 1960’s the psychological life of individuals and of our nation was so very different than it is now.

I was driven to recognize, admit, bring out of hiding the family secret, and heal myself. Annette repeatedly reiterated that the most important Work an individual can do is heal herself. The ripple effect is enormous. Now with the support of #ME TOO women are individually sharing their secret and thus are  collectively changing our culture in a much needed and healing way. HURRAH for all of us!

This healing journey has essentially been done away from my family.  Perhaps in my very early adulthood as I finished nursing school I KNEW distancing myself from my immediate family was necessary for me to heal. This healing of my life altering auto immune disease (auto immune disease has its base in the self not being able to differential one's own cells from others') could not have gone forward had I not met and connected deeply with Dwight, now my husband, whom I met 30 years ago this past Thanksgiving.  

My last name remains Haynes.  Haynes reminds me of all I have experienced: the early oral sexual abuse AND the deep healing which has freed me of the debilitating body flash backs.  The latter began when I was in elementary school when we moved to Shenandoah, Iowa, and continued throughout my life until healing from the autoimmune disease. It has now been years since I have had a "flashback."

In the very first blog post I equated healing the raped landscape of MuRefuge to healing myself. This initial post was a less explicit version of my healing and the first public written acknowledgement of my early trauma.  

Now as the hands Dwight sculpted for MuRefuge's artisan well offer water to the water spite living below the surface, I am once again offering my #ME TOO story.

To discharge emotions as they arise I continue to

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Welcome 2018

Dwight's sculpture "Between Earth and Sky" pictured at MuRefuge.
She has now been transplanted to Santa Fe, New Mexico,
to remind ourselves to BE open to "the circles of our lives"
as Wendell Berry so magnificently depicts below:

Within the circles of our lives
we dance the circles of the years,
the circles of the seasons 
within the circles of the years,
the cycles of the moon
within the circles of the seasons,
the circles of our reasons
within the cycles of the moon.

Again, again we come and go,
changed, changing. Hands
join, unjoin in love and fear,
grief and joy, The circles turn,
each giving into each, into all.
Only music keeps us here,

each by all the others held.
In the hold of hands and eyes
we turn in pairs, that joining
joining each to all again.

And then we turn aside, alone,
out of the sunlight gone

into the darker circles of return.

      Wendell Berry

Let us all welcome 2018 with open arms; circling, circling, circling. And to discharge the turmoil, anger, fear, grief within may we each

Thursday, December 21, 2017

2017 Winter Solstice

to each of you from 
"The Land of Enchantment."

The Winter Solstice marks midwinter. Indigenous,"first peoples" all over planet Earth have long honored this significant and cyclical turning event. These peoples were connected with land, sky, the four directions and all BEings; thus they were profoundly in tune with the cycles of the seasons, sun, moon as well as birth and death.

Tonight is the longest night of the year with the occurrence of more dark hours, thus affording each of us an extended opportunity to access of the spiritual realm.   

"It is our quiet time
We do not speak, because the voices are within us
It is our quiet time
 We do not walk, because the earth is all within us
It is our quiet time
We do not dance, because the music has lifted us to a place 
where the spirit is
It is our quiet time
We rest with all of nature. . . ."
Nancy Wood

Unlike Winter Solstice  2017 with a new moon a commencing earlier in theis week,
some years the full moon coincides with Winter Solstice.
This picture taken a number of years ago on a Winter Solstice from the West side
of Mono Lake, California, depicts the rising full moon.
However each of us chose to honor this cyclical event, may we also

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Pinon-Juniper Forest and Thanksgiving

Image  "The Pinon Pine Tree"
2016 ©, Santa Fe, NM, C. Sullivan
"New Mexico's State Tree is the handsome Pinon Pine
which grows widely in the Southwest's mountain foothills."
For many years, beginning with my very first trip to the Eastern Sierras, I have been enamored with the Pinon Pine tree. During our many trips in November we would pay $5 to cut a Pinon in the Toiyabe National Forest for our Yule Tree. The fragrance is wonderfully earthy and long lasting.

Now that we have relocated and are putting down roots in the high desert, I have purchased a live, locally grown Pinon Pine (Pinus edulis) for this year's Yule Tree from Payne's Nursery just a few short blocks from where we are temporarily staying in Santa Fe. The young tree is a mere 4' tall but beautifully shaped. It will remain in the ground until early December then be lifted, root ball and all, up from the soil and placed in a large tree pot. Rather than covering the root ball with "potting soil," earthworm castings and mushroom compost will be mixed to cover the roots. Both of these "amendments" will support the tree's immune system thus providing for a long life. "The Pinon can live to 500 years and its dry-environment survival kit includes 20 foot long taproots." This year's Yule Tree will remain outdoors so as to not unnecessarily tax its well BEing. The plan is to plant it in the ground this Winter season barring frozen soil. This native tree will eventually be surrounded, for a long life, with a community of native Juniper (hopefully One-seed), native grasses and native flowers.

These pictures were taken at the "dog park" in November, 2017. It is not Wintery yet, no freezing nighttime temperatures and unseasonably warm in the daytime and dry. 

Only one light skiff of snow on the mountain tops
since we arrived the day before Halloween.
However, the plants are aware that this is the dry cycle and are entering their dormancy.

Shasta running towards her new found friend, Lilly, a Portuguese Waterdog.
The Pinon Pine and One-seed or Singleseed Juniper (Junipers monosperma)
abound on either side of the path.

Shasta off to investigate smells amidst the Pinon - Juniper desert forest.

Most of our out of doors time presently is spent each morning in the Frank Ortiz Dog Park. Shasta continues her energetic and exuberant exploration of humans, dogs and the terrain always finding a familiar dog friend . . . or a new fast dog friend.

Thanksgiving is a momentous day for us, especially in 2017, since we met at a friends gathering in Santa Rosa, California. I had recently moved to Santa Rosa and was a long time friend of the hostess; Dwight, exiting a 25 year marriage, was a friend and business associate of another in attendance. Each invited one of us because we would each otherwise be spending the holiday alone. So 30 years later we both are blessed with one another's love and companionship, and have much to be grateful for as we embark on the next chapter of our lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico. 

Creator, open our hearts
to peace and healing between all people.
Creator, open our hearts
to provide and protect all children
of the earth.
Creator, open our hearts
to respect for the earth, and all the
gifts of the earth.
Creator, open our hearts
to end exclusion, violence
and fear among all.
Thank-you for the gifts
of this day and every day.

Mi'Kmaq prayer

As we each express our gratitude, may we also