Friday, June 24, 2011

A Beautiful Strength

There are about a handful of people staying here in the two condo resorts that share an open green space in the middle.  We just so happen to be neighbors with an incredibly nice gentleman I’ll call a Shaman.  He calls himself an energy worker, but from my meager understanding of what a shaman is, I’m pretty sure he’s the real deal.

He is a Native American  who normally resides in Sedona.  His uncle (who I suspect was a tribe elder but I don’t know for sure) trained he and each of his siblings in a trade.  Our neighbor was trained in prayer, ceremony and energy work.  His sister was trained in herbs and how to work with the earth.  His brother was trained in survival skills and his other brother was trained in forging.  At one point he asked his uncle why he didn’t train each of them in all things, and his uncle responded that this way, they would all stay connected.  And he was right.  Our neighbor calls his sister and nephew for herb advice, they call him for crystal energy work.  It is fascinating to me to watch someone who uses their hands and materials of the earth to create so much.  From harvesting herbs to tanning hides and leatherworking, the Native American way of life is filled with knowledge of the land and how to create things from it.  It is no wonder “Native American Made” holds special meaning for many people looking for artisan work.  But the land is just the beginning.  There is a rich spiritual tradition there, an understanding of the underlying energy in everything. 

Our very kind neighbor shaman passes all kinds of things over the balcony to us, whether it be a muffin or a handful of sage.  He offered to take us out to harvest mullein and yarrow, two herbs that grow prolifically here.  Stephen and our neighbor drove up the mountain together and a couple hours later he came home with lots of fresh greens we tied with string and hung to be dried.  Mullein will be used for tea, it is wonderful to strengthen the lungs.  Yarrow is used for disinfecting wounds as well as breaking fevers.  It is amazing to me that these plants provide us so much beauty and yet, when we look deeper, we see they have healing spirits and bring much to us when we are in need of physical vitality.  Beautiful but strong.  Able to heal.  I guess in a way I sort of find inspiration in these qualities.


And I felt a bit of pride in my husband, who our neighbor said was a natural harvester, taking just enough and leaving a variety of growth stages and plants to keep the plant population thriving.  Hmmm…lego seller right now, but perhaps a budding herbalist?Smile 

Somehow, I doubt it…


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Towns of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains

One of the parts I love most about traveling is seeing how other people live, work, play, and, well just be, in different areas.  Even areas that are only miles apart have their own lifestyles. 

In Angel Fire, the people are generally soft spoken and quiet, they keep to themselves, and they are some of the nicest most genuine people I have ever met.  They live in a quiet and beautiful place, existing very close to nature and the elements.



In Red River the town bustles with activity.  There are less full time residents there than Angel Fire,  but the town is always full of tourists.  There are shops and restaurants and activities lining the streets, and the town has a definite boomtown feel.  Again, lots of friendly folks with its mix of those who seem a bit tired of the tourists.



Then you can wind down the mountain to Taos.  No mountain town here with log cabins and pine forests.  This is the southwest desert. Covered in Sage Brush and sandy soil, the town is filled with a mix of Native Americans, Hispanics, and sort of artsy Caucasians.  The town’s energy draws those who crave an alternative lifestyle –artists, herbalists, energy workers.  The whole town is constructed from beautiful adobe structures with gardens flowing over the sand colored walls. 


Each town such a different energy, each own offering its own hospitality to our little family of four.  We are grateful to each of them. 



Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Cleaning Day

Noelle Age 3 Sterling Age 1

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


Rays spill

In perfect honeyed spirals

 IMG_0104 IMG_0102

Even when

Our heads are down


Unable to see the sky

Spirit will not abandon


She puts a sun

Upon the ground


Golden Hope


Sunshine Love


Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Salt and Pepper

Sterling has been imitating everything we do….


I have a feeling this is probably one of those things only parents and possibly grandparents really appreciate:)

Monday, June 6, 2011


Last night I wanted to something artsy to do with the kids outside. 

But we are in Angel Fire, which means expansive views and quiet, and no real stores to speak of.

I brought watercolors with us, and there were rocks everywhere, so….


And of course once the rocks were painted, other canvases were found.




I am finding that a place this small, this hidden away is like a balm for an exhausted mama.  Limited conveniences, yes, but limited traffic, people…limited stimulation.


So now the questions becomes, how many rocks could one theoretically paint?:)

A Peek


This video sums up oh so well what daily life is like with two very young ones.  One minute sweeter than words can write, the next, well, you’ll see:)

Friday, June 3, 2011


We are back in Angel Fire.  Like an old friend, the unparalleled Moreno Valley unfolded before us, wrapping us in its crisp evergreen embrace.


I have been to several places since we were last here, and I now know enough now to know this is a very special place to us.  We have not found anything like it.

The quiet is so expansive I feel like I breathe deeper.  My mind is clear and I feel more connected.  Perhaps this is what untouched nature does for one’s soul? 

The quiet is filled with the songs of birds and frogs, rain, and wind.  I can hear all of it so clearly.  Perhaps I am not quite the city girl I thought I was.  There might not be a WalMart here, but Spirit feels so close…


Memories of Noelle and Sterling a year ago flooded back.  He was still a babe in a sling, she a budding two year old.  And I was thinking how he will be that two year old next year when we come. 

I can say as much as I love my babies, I do not leave the  baby stage behind with any wistfulness.  It can become a bit difficult for a personality like mine that loves to adventure.  But there is nothing like the bond that develops during that time.  It lasts a lifetime. 

But the two year old phase.  Now I miss that.  When a child starts to speak and understand so fully, oh it is magical.  And they begin to love the adventures.    Three year old Noelle is even more amazing.  She is like a fish in water with travel.  I know I will miss her too, next year.


I am watching now as Sterling is beginning to put his world together, put our words together.  The magic is beginning and I can’t wait to see what he he has been waiting to tell me:)