"I am Mother Nature. All of creation bows before me. When people leave their cities and learn of me-walk in my woods, bathe in my rivers, eat of my harvest-they will find healing to their souls."

...Seth Adam Smith, Rip Van Winkle and the Pumpkin Lantern

I love the quote from Maya in the movie, "Sideways,"

when she's talking about the life of wine...

"How it's a living thing. I like to think about what was going on the year the grapes were growing; how the sun was shining; if it rained. I like to think about all the people who tended and picked the grapes. And if it's an old wine, how many of them must be dead by now. I like how wine continues to evolve, like if I opened a bottle of wine today it would taste different than if I'd opened it on any other day, because a bottle of wine is actually alive. And it's constantly evolving and gaining complexity. That is, until it peaks.”

I think of harvest time as that which comes full circle; whether it be beautiful jewels of the earth that make their way to our glorious tables; wonderful wine which opens for the first time or dreams that manifest in their organic and unfolding perfect time. But what is it that enables a harvest to take place? It all begins with a seed - an intention. This seed needs to be consistently cultivated, whether a plant of the earth or a goal we wish to attain. It takes our love and attention - taking wise and timely action to bring our intention full circle, and the greatest opportunity to experience this full circle process is with nature; and particularly at harvest time.

Those farmers who toil and cultivate their land, their love of family and their community, along with the wine makers, who are nurturing their vineyards and even more, the way they prune the branches, so the fruit yields its most beautiful flavor; all of this requires a team of those who are intent on the same purpose.

Could meditating, journaling and time in nature actually enhance your life and creativity?

I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in. ~John Muir

And, so it is with Portraits to Transform

I understand first hand through engaging in my morning process of meditation, journaling and spending time in nature, just how this process has enriched my life, helped me understand situations with more clarity and enabled me to take steps toward realizing my dreams.

I also love to share this love I have for nature and this quiet reflective process with others, so each person can see how they are able to access this enrichment into their lives, no matter what their circumstances may be or helping them to build their dreams.

I feel these Portraits to Transform are about delving into a deeper level of storytelling and a real gift to each person that takes this opportunity. These are completely confidential (I received the approval from Susie prior to her portrait to share her portrait experience with you).

I see and feel the strength in setting an intention, doing a meditation or walking meditation; capturing images which reflect that intention and then adding music; again selected by you to create a visual meditation.

Susie's intention: What does it mean to be worthy.

Her insights really were so profound, which I feel you will enjoy:

The power of transformation doesn't come in everything taking place in the way that you think it should, the power of transformation comes in the unexpected experiences that challenge who we are, what we believe, and the limitations we've unfairly placed on ourselves. The storm clouds of our lives bring forth doubt, fear, fight, flight, and sometimes a freezing in place, but it is within these clouds that we discover our greatest source of growth. We cannot experience our light without truly experiencing our darkness. What does it mean to be worthy of our own darkness, sadness, fear, and doubt? It is a profound question because we often don't relate worthiness with the darkness within ourselves, but for me the darkness is what brought forth the light. The trials, the tribulations, the isolation is what developed the light just like a photo developing in a dark room; a little at a time, the picture, purpose, and worthiness of my life began to develop. Being worthy of my darkness, in turn developed into me being worthy of my own light. Beyond the darkness, lies a place in our soul that is unwounded and wrapped in light; this is the core of who we are and we are always worthy of its' presence.

As well, I then take the images you've selected and create a visual journal which also includes pages for you to continue to write into your process.

These are then given to you, so you can continue to enjoy the visual meditation as well as the insights you receive as you continue to ponder your intention.

I look forward to discussing your special Portrait with you. Whether you are celebrating your life, have a question you would like answers and insights to or desiring to understand how to move forward with your dreams; this is sure to inspire you, because it is about you and it is personalized for you.

Joy is a net by which you catch souls ....Mother Teresa

Joy does give us a vibrance to living life well. As I was hiking this morning, I was pondering how joy is so very important in our lives. I asked the trees to share with me if they feel joy. I loved their response, "we feel a vibrance and are fully alive when our roots are nourished and we are connected to our family." Wow! To me that's so true in my own life; when I feel nourished and rested and connected to people I love and enjoy; how great life is!

I'm consistently reminded how much joy there is to be had. When I'm out in nature I feel totally alive and well and then when I have the opportunities to create with others in nature who are doing so much celebrating and doing what they love; it's like a special bonus beyond words.

Thank you...Thank you...Thank you Dear God.

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