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Unique Lavender Potpourri
There is nothing quite like the fresh wafting scent of lavender in your home. Right now is prime lavender season and perhaps you are lucky enough to have these sturdy herbs in your backyard. If not, get to a lavender farm! You may be interested to know that you should and can use the whole lavender plant...even the stalks. When I trim my lavender for floral arrangements, I am always left with green stalks and lots of them. I thought, "How can I use these highly fragrant, but seemingly throw-away lavender ends?" That's when the thought hit me to simply arrange them in a bowl.

Arranging them in a bowl is so savvy and adorable! It has a very chic and modern look. It looks like stalks of grass, but smells of lavender! Remember, no water in the bowl. Let the lavender stalks dry out naturally. When the stalks dry out, you can use them for your smudge sticks! This is a win win situation. The died lavender stalks smell just as good as the florets. I even had a tiny ceramic frog to place into the scenery. So, the next time you are trimming your lavender for floral arranging do not throw away the ends. Instead, use them for a lavender potpourri!

Hangin' Tough: A Humorous Lesson in Patience
If you are an 80s child then the New Kids on the Block title reference will not be missed, if not then I am sorry for this three sentence rant that follows. I do suggest you Google "Hangin' Tough by New Kids on the Block" pronto. I will leave their musical genius and video below for nostalgic purposes. Back to the point of this post! What does "hangin' tough" mean and how does it pertain to difficult times? Let's go right to "hang in there man". That's what many people will say to you when you are going through difficult times. They say this because #1.) They have no idea what to say to you and #2.) Your shitty time will eventually pass as all things do....even the really shitty times.

Hangin' tough means waiting it out, having patience, and sobbing all over Mr. Whiskers. However, no one ever tells you how much time you will be waiting for emotional relief during and immediately following hard times. Someone should prepare you and perhaps send a short text message like: "Stock up on whisky" *smiley emoticon* or *crying emoticon* or *smiling-crying emoticon*. I am here to tell you this single truth: You will be waiting for what could be months and seemingly swimming to an open island called "nowhere". There you will get sun burnt until patience carries you through to your next happy moment. All jokes aside, hang in there man.

How do you conquer this patient time period? Patience would be nice, but let's say you have little patience to offer to the world. The next best thing is making plans to keep yourself busy. I am not talking about a business plan, just simply something to do. Travel, having dinner with friends, playing a game with your kids, or even taking a walk around the block. Pass the time. Start watching a new television series...anything other than twiddle your thumbs and thoughts. You will have a moment where you feel like you can breath again or that your chest isn't crushing inwards towards your internal organs. During that moment, you are coming off your island. Perhaps you are ready to come out of your cave and greet the world again. When you are ready, you will know...and don't let your therapist tell you any different! Laugh through the tears. It will get better, but you have to believe it will.





Finding Peace

Stark revelation today. Peace is not something that God gives you or anyone else. In order to get true peace in your life you must be willing to give it to yourself. As someone who is incredibly hard on themselves, this is easier said than done. At least, I made this revelation for myself. All it took was one little dove sitting on an electrical wire to remind me that PEACE is available to everyone and it is for the taking. So, why can't I just reach out an grab it? Huffing and puffing trying to extend my reach....I cannot get peace today. I feel anxiety in my chest like an anxious balloon filling the oxygen in my lungs. Time for a dose of ativan.

"In order to love who you are, you cannot hate the experiences that shaped you."
-Andrea Dykstra

And quite frankly, I do. I abhor the experiences that got me here. I need to make peace with those experiences before I can feel peace. I am not sure how exactly. The journey through my wretched emotions has only just begun. As I sift through the muck and extract the weeds, I must be patient with myself. However, I feel I must also make progress. The lack of progress in my life is disheartening. Where am I going? I have no clue, but I want to get there now. There goes patience....good bye.

Today, I saw a beautiful blue jay. I rarely see them and this one boldly fluttered right past us. Blue jays symbolize and teach the art of fearlessness, presence, and being in the moment. ShamanicJourney.com says, Blue jays are known for driving away much bigger prey to include owls and hawks. Blue jays may also be a sign that it is time to develop and use our inner wisdom. I also saw two Doves simultaneously flutter from our tree today. Doves symbolize peace. According to ShamanicJourney.com, the dove is also a spirit messenger between the worlds. The dove is what made me think about peace and my war-like relationship with it. Peace and I need to come together....or actually I need to come together with peace.

The number two has meaning here. I found this interpretation to be quite good at What's-Your-Sign.com:

"The symbolic meaning of number Two is kindness, balance, tact, equalization, and duality. The number Two reflects a quiet power of judgment, and the need for planning. Two beckons us to choose. The spiritual meaning of number Two also deals with exchanges made with others, partnerships (both in harmony and rivalry), and communication. Two urges us out of our indecision, calls us to unite with like-minds, and like-ideals. Two asks us to exert our natural flow of judgment to do what is best for our souls."
What does all of this mean? I have felt at a stalemate, roadblock, or impasse with my life. Now, it is time to make a decision and to go forward with my talents. Nursing is still really important to me and now I must take a refresher course to activate my license. My job right now is to be patient, but to feel like I am making progress with my goals of getting back to nursing. I am also looking forward to donating my time to some local charities that I am very fond of such as: One Love Loudoun, Friends of Loudoun, and Carried to Full-Term. It is my hope that you will give yourself peace each and everyday. I will work on it if you will! May peace be with you.







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