And Soon It Will Begin….

I had a dream last night.  I don’t remember much of it.  But one thing that has clearly stuck to my conscious mind is the message (which I can still hear being said with a big, deep voice): Yooooou neeeeeeed to coooonnnnnect with yourrrrrr creeeeaaaativity agaaaaain.

Yeah, yeah….I’m not surprised.  I’ve been missing writing, drawing, dancing and singing (don’t tell my hubby the last part!).

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I’ve just been busy.

This year, 2015, has brought many new things into my life.  I’ve traveled to the Caribbean and Australia, my hubby was picked up by a British publisher for his book, I’ve been in school, opened up a holistic practice (Cheney Holistic) and now a Solution-Focused Coaching practice (Teal Tiger).

Through all of this, I’ve felt myself being stretched in so many ways.  I’ve been happy with the growth, wisdom and knowledge I’ve gained.  My relationships with the special people in my life have improved and I can honestly say that life is good.

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It hasn’t been all rosy, trust me.  I’ve done a lot of ‘inner work’ which forced me to uncover a lot of stuff that I didn’t want to.  I’ve taken a two week home retreat in which I dedicated my 9-5 hours to contemplation and self-discovery.  That was so hard.  I found out about a bunch of belief systems I was carrying around which I realized that they weren’t mine, but were adopted from others.  I learned about what I like and don’t like, and most of all, I was able to make peace with parts of myself that wanted to be heard.

A lot of my growth came especially during my intense studies in Solution-Focused Coaching.  There were many times in class where I felt I was struck by an eighteen wheeler truck as I learned about behaviors, beliefs, values and vision.  My passion for this just kept growing and growing.  I can honestly say that I’ve found my calling in life, and I look forward to helping others live their life to their fullest.

As busy as the first half of 2015 has been, my journey is just beginning.  The next three months will be a different sort of journey; one that requires me to leave the comforts of my home, my city, my friends, and some of the time my family as well, for an extensive period of time.  We will be visiting Australia again and from there we will be going to Spain to do a 400+ kilometer pilgrimage known as the Camino de Santiago plus other travels.

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Many people have asked that we post pictures of our trips onto Facebook.  I honestly didn’t want to post anything, and wanted to stay screens free during this time period and disconnected.  I’ve really been trying to minimize my interactions with social media and really, media in general.  I am planning to write in my journal during this time, and my husband is planning to take pictures so we’ve decided to combine the two together.  This way, you can join our journey with us.

And so, our journey began today with our last long walk on our favorite path.  We’ve walked this path for months and have logged at least about 300 kilometers on it as we trained for the Camino.  We’ve encountered many friendly (and curious) people along the way, and have seen such beautiful wildlife (deer, rabbits, beautiful birds, beavers, snakes) – all within minutes of our front door.  I will miss this path during the next few months, and look forward to seeing it again in the fall.

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If you’re wanting to hear more of our journey, please subscribe to this blog.

With Love,

Smartie and Philosofree

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Why Didn’t The Chicken Cross The Road?

To answer the question – it’s because it marched to a different drumstick!!

And on that same day when it decided not to cross it sat down on the side of the road and decided to stare off into the unknown distance.  She just stared and stared and stared and then something happened.  A sudden realization came over her.  She wondered if the chickens before her who crossed the road really knew what they were doing, or if they did it because that’s what was always done.  And she came to know that despite what everyone told her, the grass was not greener on the other side.  But she wasn’t happy with the grass where she lay either.

And so she walked along the side of the road, not knowing where it would lead her but trusting that it would be to a better place.

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And that chicken, my friend, is me.

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What Am I Doing Here?

“Once you have traveled, the voyage never ends, but is played out over and over again in the quiestest chambers. The mind can never break off from the journey.” – Pat Conroy

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I’ve been back in Toronto for a few days now, and I have to admit that I’m struggling a bit. Being back here, back to the old routine is difficult. Yesterday was really hard for me, for Saturday and Sunday were days spent trying to get adjusted to this time zone and with family activities. Yesterday was my first full day back to my routine. And it sucked.

I can honestly say that I think I was majorly depressed yesterday as all I wanted to do is stay in bed. Being summer and having a little six year old in tow sure didn’t allow for that to happen, so the level of crankiness and depression just increased as the day went on and until I was able to shake the feeling.

I couldn’t understand why I was affected like this. I’ve travelled pleanty of times in the past for both work and leisure, but what made this time different? And then it hit me. This time I felt like I escaped reality as I totally threw myself into this vacation and I made sure that I experienced everything I possibly could. I was swallowed up my the culture, the food, the scenery. I totally let myself go made sure to let go of my old life, just for a while. Well this had consequences, let me tell you. It made coming home that much more difficult, to the point of crying.

I’m sure that by now you can guess that this vacation was awesome. The Amalfi Coast I find has regenerating qualities. Why else would Liz from Eat, Pray, Love and the women from Enchanted April go there to heal and discover themselves? I felt that I healed and a lot of my wounds are almost gone. I ate. Boy did I ever eat. And I rested. There is something about the combination of sea and mountains at the same place which is comforting. Despite the steep roads and neverending stairs, there is a relaxing, soothing atmosphere about this place. Life is precious here, and the locals know this.

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Then the couple of days in Rome brought me to the busy metropolitan way of life, like back home. It was difficult to get used to business but I made sure to concentrate on what was in front of me. It was beautiful, but Paris won my heart. The contrast to the way of life in Rome was extremely noticeable. Paris….what can I say about Paris. There are no words to describe Paris. It is a city of beauty, love and enchantment. I finally understand why people have fallen in love with Paris. Even though it’s a major city, it has a small town feel to it. Like Amalfi, I found that it wasn’t hectic. All I can say is that Paris just felt right.

I had the opportunity to see family at the end of my trip, and it made for a nice finally. I haven’t seen them in over ten years. I find it fascinating how so much time can go by, yet it can also feel like no time has passed as well.

Sorry if this post was a bit of a downer, but at this time, I’m still struggling to recover from this amazing time. I question why life is the way it is, and how I can provide for more opportunities like this for my daughter and me.

Paris anyone?

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