Archive for June, 2012

As always, a must read from this amazing blog (which I highly recommend you follow and explore) “Niceness is not about unconditional love – it is about giving up honesty in order to avoid disapproval, confrontation, rejection, ridicule or embarrassment. It elevates the happiness and well-being of others above your own. It is based on falseness, and by its nature, niceness prevents honesty and authenticity. When you come from niceness you teach others to devalue you, and disrespect you. You do not set clear boundaries.”

Cauldrons and Cupcakes

Kindness is a loving balm, understanding is a mental tonic, compassion grows our hearts, love is food for the soul, but niceness? Far too often niceness is a poison administered to ourselves by our own hand.

There is a trend (and I recognise it because I once was in that same place!) where people beginning to become spiritually aware try to live from a place of unconditional love. That’s a beautiful thing, but too often what gets practised is not actually unconditional love but ‘niceness’.

Many people consider niceness to be a virtue; a sign of living from heart, and acting from love. I’m not referring to kindness, or good manners, or amiability. I’m talking here about pleasing others, not wanting to hurt someone’s feelings, and being agreeable and amenable, even if it comes at a high cost to yourself.

Speaking our truth honours us, and it teaches us honest…

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This is such a difficult question to answer, but this post seems to have said it amazingly well, precisely and concisely! The last two paragraphs are particularly powerful. Thanks to three dee life for this and I am passing it along with love light and JOY


We don’t have to concoct or contrive or conceptualize a “spiritual” life.  The life process is Self-recognition, and it is already underway in  its myriad manifestations.  Our purpose is non-different from this world process of Self-recognition.  The only question is, are we going to move with the life process or fight against it until we die of exhaustion.  — Pilgrims to Openness: Direct Realization Tantra in Everyday Life, Shambhavi Sarasvati

Sometimes, our lives are full of vivid meaning and awakenings and new understandings.  When we go through big, obvious changes, it can be easy to connect with our spirituality.  We feel life moving through us.  We feel our hearts widen.  There is a lot of power in times of transition and growth.

And sometimes, life just quietly powers along in a series of small pleasures and disappointments.  We do not sense anything moving.  We are just living our days.  In those moments…

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…and the Awards Go To…Sunshine, Kreativ and Reader Appreciation Awards!

The time has come to finish accepting the rest of the awards I was so privileged to be nominated for.  But more important, the time has come to pass these awards on to so many deserving bloggers.  This will not be an easy post to put together.  And if for any reason I have overlooked you for any reason, please accept my apologies.  There are so many wonderful people out their sharing so much with others, it is difficult to know where to begin.

Kreativ Blogger Award

I was nominated for this by The Burnt Map.  http://theburntmap.wordpress.com/

If you love, travel, travel photography and travelogs at their supreme best, you MUST check out this blog.  I wait impatiently for each and every new post!  With much thanks to you for burning maps and thinking of me!!

In accepting the nomination I write 7 things about me and nominate 7 others.  As I’ve already written 7 things about me a couple of times before, I will rewrite one of those lists here, with my apologies.  😀

1.       My greatest joy and blessing during this sojourn on Earth is my family. My 6 amazing children and the extended family of additional sons and daughter-in-law they have brought me, and my 13 wonderful grandchildren ranging in age from 8 months to 18 years!

Me and My Kids – Five daughters, and one son-the “baby”

2.     I had the honor and privilege to meet Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo-the first Western woman to be ordained as a Tibetan Buddhist Nun.  This meeting resulted in a powerful but subtle shift in perception for me  leading to a “growth spurt” in my life’s journey. You can read about her amazing life story here:  Cave in the Snow

You can also find more information about her life’s work, her nunnery, at this website:  www.tenzinpalmo.com/

3.     I have three loving Guides who have been with me since birth (although I was forced to deny their existence on threat of punishment when I was 7 years old). I reunited with them in my 50’s through a deep meditation practice and they  have agreed to publicly reveal my pet names for them since childhood.  Kaki, Gee and Chuchibell!!

4.       I was blessed to have an audience with HH Dalai Lama in 2001, and the effects of that brief meeting are still rippling through my life to this very day.

5.       I love to play computer games rationalizing that they are good for my rapidly aging brain, but how much brain power do you need to play Bubbles?!?!?

6.       I love to dance and have been doing it in one way or another since the age of 2. For the past 35 years I have both taught and danced Israeli Folk Dancing-I currently dance 3 times  week, each session lasting about 4 hours.

7.       My one vanity is painting my fingernails!!

As to the links-I am trying to find the “Kreativ” in them-whether in inspirational photography, recipes or writing…all of the below are most certainly highly “kreativ” in their own way:


http://cauldronsandcupcakes.com/  Everything about this blog is Divinely inspired creativity!!





http://phranqueigh.wordpress.com/  Superb writing!


The Sunshine Award

This award is given to blogs that positively and creatively inspire! And so for me it is the ultimate award as this is what I hope to achieve in writing my blogs.  The fact that someone out there “felt” this energy from my blog, is the greatest form of acknowledgement and honor I can ask for.  And certainly gives me the positive energy I need to continue writing-even when I feel it is sometimes “too much”.  So a very special thank you to Gina at http://professionsforpeace.com for this nomination.  Her blog is the epitome of positive and creative inspiration, and if she wasn’t already awarded this several times, I would most definitely put her on my list.  Please do check out her blog.  You will be forever grateful that you did!!

The steps to take, preferably with JOY  
1. Include the award logo somewhere in your blog.
2. Answer these 10 questions, below, for fun if you want to.
3. Nominate 10 to 12 blogs you enjoy. Or you pick the number.
4. Pay the love forward: Provide your nominee’s link in your post and comment on their blog to let them know they’ve been included and invited to participate.
5. Pay the love back with gratitude and a link to the blogger(s) who nominated you.

Below is a quote from Gina and I felt it so well written, there was no reason to try and put into my own words.  With your apologies Gina, I quote as follows:

“~I am not adding a note about each blog this time, as I have done with my past awards. I encourage you to visit and discover on your own how they deserve The Sunshine Award because they all positively and creatively inspire. Also some (or all) of these writers may choose to not participate in this award process but I still want this chance to help you, dear reader, to find these blogs and perhaps be inspired by what they contain, if you haven’t found them already. ~Gina”

The Questions:

What is your favorite color?  
Red.  Has been since I can remember knowing what colors are!

What is your favorite animal?  
I would say human beings, as I can find nothing to compare to the uniqueness and Diving splendor of the human being,but I know this is referring to other types of animals.  So I would probably say cat, but horse would come in a close second.

What is your favorite non-alcoholic drink?  

Do you prefer Facebook or Twitter?  
Facebook.  Don’t have Twitter and wish I still lived in a world where I could live without Facebook as well.  😀

What’s your passion? 
Being of service.  It is the reason I am here.  Being of service in any way God feels is right for me at the moment.  My service has changed over the years, as have I as I’ve grown along my life’s journey.  I simply pray each and every day that God send those to me who are in need of my special services, for our mutual benefit.  Blogging is simply another way I find myself being of service.  And there is no doubt that there is great benefit in it for me as well.  J

What’s your favorite pattern? 
It would have to be things in Nature.  Clouds, flowers, etc.

Do you prefer giving or getting presents?  
I LOVE giving presents, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t also enjoy receiving them…the inner child is always alive and kicking!!

What’s your favorite number?  
No idea.

Favorite day of the week? 
Whatever day today is.  It is the only day I truly have, so it is my favorite!

Favorite flower?
Tough one.  There is just too much uniqueness and grandeur out there in the flower world to be able to choose. So I would have to say it is the flower I am seeing at the moment.  It is, at that moment, my favorite flower.

The Nominees:








Blessings and gratitude to all of the writers, photographers, chefs and poets in this nominated list, and beyond, who share their inner gifts with us all in this wonderful world of blogging.

Reader Appreciation Award

I was nominated for this lovely award by Rahul, probably one of the most amazing bloggers I’ve had the privilege of meeting!  A comment I sent him says it all!  “You seem like an amazing person, and still so young to have such insights! May you continue to follow your deepest soul insights…to continue to find “deep inspection” in all things…you live in an truly awesome country…my prayers and blessings for you, your writing and your life journey. May it be filled with great love, light, JOY, gratitude and Faith. I truly hope you will find your way to his blog: 


How It Works:

1. Include the award logo somewhere in your blog.

2. Answer these 10 questions, below, for fun if you want to. (These are the same questions found above on the Sunshine award, so you can see the fun answers there!)

3. Nominate 10 to 12 blogs you enjoy. Or you pick the number.

4. Pay the love forward: Provide your nominee’s link in your post and comment on their blog to let them know they’ve been included and invited to participate.

5. Pay the love back with gratitude and a link to the blogger(s) who nominated you.

Here are my nominees.  I sincerely appreciate their taking the time to share their insights, inspirations, wisdom, poetry, stories, photography and other talents, and for finding their way into my life via the wonderful world of blogging! And as above, some (or all) of these writers may choose to not participate in this award process but I still want this chance to help you, dear reader, to find these blogs and perhaps be inspired by what they contain, if you haven’t found them already.













with much love light and JOY to all

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This post is long overdue.  I have been nominated for several awards over the past few months, and at first thought to just thank the people who so graciously nominated me, but decline the award due to time restrain. I am humbled and deeply honored by these nominations but at first felt it a little overwhelming to follow all the rules, etc.

But I’ve been thinking about it for some time, and realize that this is not just about ME, but about YOU and introducing you to other beautiful people and their wonderful blogs which you may not be aware of.

So I will begin from the beginning and slowly work my way through the nominations, perhaps “cheating” a little on the rules, but at least getting as many lovely links out to as many lovely people as I can.  I will write a separate post for each award nomination, so as to keep each post a reasonable length! (Coming soon:  Reader Appreciation Award (Nominated by http://iamrahulashok.wordpress.com/2012/06/09/a-feather-in-ones-cap-for-this-week/, Sunshine Award  from http://professionsforpeace.com/2012/06/06/and-the-award-goes-to/and Kreative Blogger Award from http://theburntmap.wordpress.com/2012/04/15/kreativ-blogger-award-im-taken-aback/). I will be writing more about each of them in upcoming posts.

The first award offered me is the 7×7 Link Award which is actually a great opportunity for ME to re-explore my own blog and at the same time bring to your attention posts you may not have seen from the past.  It was originally offered for my India Journal Blog http://janesindiajournals.wordpress.com/ – You are an adventurer of the world and the soul.  I love the way you share your journey.  It is awesome! By http://momentumofjoy.com, but she graciously agreed to let me transfer it to my current blog where I am posting on a regular basis these days.  You definitely want to check out her blog.  As the name suggests, she will not only inspire you, but she will most surely bring a “moment of joy” into your day!

Now on to the rules of the 7×7 Link Award:

1.  Give thanks and acknowledgements to the blogger who nominated you for this award.  Done that!!

2.  List 7 of your previous links in the following categories. Most Helpful, Most Popular, Most Beautiful Piece, Most Controversial, Most Surprisingly Successful, Most Underrated, Most Pride Worthy). This is a perfect opportunity for ME to re-view my writing so a very special thanks to MOJ for this !   See Below.

3.  List 7 things about yourself. I will cheat here and let you check out the seven things from a previous award post.  At:  https://notinindia2012.wordpress.com/2012/04/03/540/

4.  Nominate 7 other bloggers for this award.

http://maggiesonebuttkitchen.wordpress.com – There is no way you can see the photos of the food without having your mouth water and then trying out the recipes. And her food is full of love so it is of course delicious!

http://professionsforpeace.com/about/  Gina writes: My…goal of each day is to remember how loved I am and to share that love outwardly. She most certainly succeeds with her blog.

http://perisspiceladle.com/about : Indian-inspired Food for the Global Palate –If you love anything Indian, or simply love wonderful food, Peri’s  blog is a MUST!

http://mylifemystuff.wordpress.com/about/  Home remedies, Yoga, Thoughts on India and so much more…worth exploring

http://asifazunaidha.wordpress.com/  Asifa has asked for no awards, but her blog is so special, I want to list it here anyway.  Check it out!

http://soulsbyfarm.wordpress.com/about/ Sustainable Farming, Permaculture, Gardening and Homesteading in Ohio –fascinating blog-extremely well written

and the crème de la crème:

http://cauldronsandcupcakes.com/about/ I love all things magical, and I am sure that cupcakes have healing qualities! This is one of the things Nicole says on her About page.  Her blog is not to be missed.  From things spiritual, inspirational and amazingly informative, to the most superb recipes you can imagine…and SO much more…please do check out this blog.

And now my 7 chosen links: This is going to be very difficult-it’s like choosing which of your children you love best, or appreciate most, etc.  So I might wind up choosing more than 7 and ask your forgiveness for not following the rules to the letter.

Most Helpful-This is actually a series of 4 posts, all dealing with Levering, the Universe, Manifesting Dreams, The Role of Faith etc.





Most Popular – certainly MY favorite The Secret of Happiness!!:  https://notinindia2012.wordpress.com/2012/04/18/the-secret-of-happiness/

Most Beautiful Piece-Perhaps one of these Photo Posts:




Most Controversial,.-Can’t think of any -sorry

Most Surprisingly Successful- To my great surprise, what I thought of as a kind of silly post, (no great message-lots of photos of food) got the most responses!  Guess it is always good to be silly…the inner child loves to have fun!


Most Underrated: This was hard to choose….So I’ll go with this one: https://notinindia2012.wordpress.com/2012/02/22/doing-nothing-is-doing-something-very-important/

Most Pride Worthy:  So hard!  One of these perhaps?




And then just a few others which I’d like to mention….so hard to choose “children”!!





Inspirational Photo Posts:






.and in closing here I am delighted to add a little work of art , created by Asifa.

with love light and JOY to all

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In Joy and Gratitude!

This is a cactus which blooms once a year, at night!!  I was blessed enough to get a photo of it last year.  This whole past year something new has been blooming in my life, and not just once a year, but every day!!  I have been blogging since 2004, but it is only now, that the world has opened up a whole new vista of joy and friendship to me. So….

Just a very quick post to tell you  how wonderful it has been to meet you all !  I love reading all the funny, inspiring, moving, beautiful things that you all take the time to share.  And of course, the photography is awesomely beautiful (there is so much talent in the world-and so much beauty to capture), and the recipes – well – what can I say.  Just thinking of some of the wonderful things I have already prepared makes my mouth water.  And the list of things I want to prepare, still awaits me!  In short, blogging has brought great joy into my life and I am once again grateful for this gift that God and the Universe has sent my way.

I will be giving credit to many of you shortly, as I have been nominated for several awards.  Just haven’t found the time to properly attend to them, but hope to do so shortly.

with MUCH love light and JOY to all of you!!

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Nicole has a superb blog. And the thoughts here are powerfully and concisely written. Hope you “get” the message. You might also like to check out her unbelievable recipes. 😀

Cauldrons and Cupcakes

Do not fear mistakes. You will know failure. Continue to reach out. ~ Benjamin Franklin

I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I can’t accept not trying. ~ Michael Jordan

As I ate breakfast at a local cafe the other day, a little boy pulled out one of his homework books to show his father. “Look, Dad,” he said, “I came third in maths.”  His dad gave him a big hug and replied, “well done, I am SO proud of you.”

While the father went inside to place his order the little boy said to me, “I will never beat Alison.  She’s the best in the whole school at maths, but maths used to be my worst subject and now I’m good at it.”

Then he smiled shyly and said, “Alison’s dreamy.”

When I drove home, I listened to the radio.  A well-known motivational speaker was being interviewed…

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The Divine appears in so many ways, Those who are aware will always know it

Love shows in so many ways, Those who Love will always see it

The Divine speaks in so many ways Those who are awake will always hear it ~ Nardeep Pujji

Fiery Sunset Rishikesh

“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift. The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious; It is the source of all true art and science.” ~ Albert Einstein

Sunset Over the Ganga-Varanassi


with love light and JOY


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BACK to India 2012 🙂

Ram Jhula

I have once again been blessed.  A long series of synchronicities   have come together to bring me to this wonderful place where I have once again been able to reserve my tickets back to India!  I will be arriving back in Rishikesh on October 10th, and although my stay will be shorter than usual, I will still have time to do my full Panchakarma treatments and of course visit with all my wonderful friends there in Rishikesh.

Waiting for Lunch on a Cold Winters Day


I probably will not have the the time I had hoped for to visit friends in other places, like Delhi and Dehradun, but perhaps they will also find their way to me in Rishikesh. I already know that a couple of good friends from other parts of the world who I have not had the pleasure of seeing in a few years, will also be in Rishikesh at the same time I will be there.  And for the first time, I am also traveling together with a friend from home.  It is her first time in India and I know it will awe and please her as it has me.

And, as always:

I leave  the “how’s” and all of the rest to God and His loving Universe to work out.

Ganga Sunset Over Ram Jhula

I experience all as it comes to me in complete acceptance, joy, gratitude and freedom from fear.

Below some further photos of just a few of my previous adventures and contented days in Rishikesh in case you feel like seeing them:

Bike Ride to Kuncha Devi Temple

My rooftop room, New Bhandari Swiss Cottage Rishikesh

Although it is still several months before I am back in this wonderful place, I am already feeling the calming energies finding their way to me.  Life is good!!!

On the way up to Neelkant Waterfall Rishikesh

Rafting Camp Along Ganga

One of Favorite Winter Suits

reflections on the ganga

I will eventually go back to posting on my India Journal Blog, but for now, I will still be with you here.


with love light and JOY


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Enjoy Juicing

Juiced fruits and veggies are delicious, refreshing (especially in the hot weather), so simple to prepare, are a great source of nutrients and a way to cleanse your system, or get a jump start on your decision to change your eating habits.  You will of course need a good juicer as these cannot be done (like smoothies) in a blender.  But it is one of the favorite things in my kitchen as it gives me an easy way to relieve a sudden urge for something “good” to drink, or for a quick snack when I don’t have time to cook.  And since you get quite a few veggies or fruits into just one glass, you get to “eat”  a lot more of these than you would if you sat down to eat them whole. Try and use organic produce if possible.  The price difference, at least for veggies, is not that great and it is definitely worth the little extra for what you are getting ( and NOT getting) in organic produce.

Just a few of photos:

the first (above) was made with a small beet, 2 carrots and 4 stalks of celery including some leaves.

The second with 2 apples and 4 stalks of celery including leaves.

The third (below) with 3 carrots and 5 stalks of celery including leaves. (I am adding celery to all my juices at the moment since I am working on cleansing after Eating My Way Through New Jersey and (Vegan Philadelphia.)

You can combine almost anything in these drinks, the only limitation is your imagination.  Celery is very high in calcium and also an excellent cleansing agent.  Beets are extremely “powerful” in their cleansing action so use a small amount to begin with and go slow.  Carrots are delicious, even alone.  You can add parsley, romaine lettuce, spinach or any other greens you have around.  A sprig of mint or spearmint. The list is endless.  Start experimenting!  I’d love to hear from you with your combinations,how they tasted, etc.

Enjoy Juicing

with love light and JOY


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With much thanks to all those lovely bloggers out there who have taken the time to visit and like my blog.  Hope I have inspired you in some small way to move more easily and joyfully along your own life’s journey.  It is your likes and comments which keep me going here-so keep them coming!!  😀

with much love light and JOY


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