Grandmother Knight Consulting: Wisdom for Life's Transitions
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Contact Connie Hill at email@example.com
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December 11, 2012 -- Holiday Memories
Memory is a part of the present. It builds us up inside; it knits our bones to our muscles and keeps our hearts pumping. It is memory that reminds our bodies to work, and memory that reminds our spirits to work, too: it keeps us who we are. - Gregory Maguire, Son of a Witch
Hi Friends Do you have any favorite holiday memories? My favorite memory happened about 20 years ago. I was so burned out with all the Christmas commercialism, the need to buy bigger and better gifts each year, and all of the holiday stress, and I didn't look forward to Christmas at all.
I had spent several years struggling with how the holidays felt and how to make them feel better. Should I stop celebrating Christmas all together, including no gifts, no tree, no decorating or make other changes, and what would those changes be?
Finally, I knew I just had to try something different. I didn't quite know what to do. Then, it came to me to try celebrating on Solstice instead of Christmas. At first, my daughters were not at all happy about my idea, but finally a couple weeks before the holiday they agreed to try it. They wanted to know how we would do it. I wasn't sure but that basically what I wanted to try was "Christmas, but on a different day." We'd have a meal together and then open gifts and do some kind of activity.
Our first Solstice celebration we had fun and my daughters even wanted to do it again the next year. That first year we had a nice dinner, watched a movie on PBS and opened our gifts. What I found was that simple date change transformed the season for me. That holiday feeling of love and compassion came back, and the stress left. Since then we have gotten together nearly every year, purposely not on Christmas.
We have gone to restaurants, to each other's homes, to Barefoot Sage for a foot bath and tea, and last year everyone came to my house and we had a Chinese take-out brunch and talk. We're still negotiating what to do this year, but it seems even more important this year for us to get together, celebrate over a meal, and share a few gifts as this particular year comes to a close.
It seems really important to share these times with loved ones and/or friends as we all get ready to walk into 2013. I hope we can all take a sense of spirit, compassion, happiness, and abundance from this holiday time into our next year. I send gratitude to each one of you and wish you happy holidays and a great beginning for 2013. And may your path be filled with love and peace as you walk into the great and wonderful unknown. Connie Hill/Grandmother Knight
November 12, 2012 -- Eclipse Season
Because this New Moon combines with a Solar Eclipse, it is an especially potent window of opportunity for making wishes. Jan Spiller
Hi Friends Well, it's fall eclipse season: eclipses usually happen in pairs, a Solar and a Lunar Eclipse, which are about two weeks apart and the pair have slightly less than six months between them and the next pair. When they happen there is an intensity, which could include earth quakes and social unrest, or they could just usher in new energies and experiences. I, personally, love eclipses, especially if they touch one of my natal planets or points because it can means something new is on it's way. Eclipse energies, unlike that of a plain old Full or New Moon, are more powerful and the potential stays around longer.
I've had my share of "eclipse changes": a broken ankle that changed my way of doing my job; a move to the beach that happened a year and a half sooner than planned; one job ending and bringing a series of shamanic classes that would change my life and my way of looking at the world. The part of an eclipse that I don't love as much is the aspect that I don't seem to have control over.
A couple of days ago I was emailing with a friend and she asked about using intention with eclipse energy. What a wonderful idea! I decided to try her suggestion with tomorrow's eclipse which is in Scorpio.
So what are my intentions for this eclipse? First, lets look at what this eclipse is about?
* New Moon/Solar Eclipses are about new beginning, new cycles, birth, trying out a new way, openings.
* Scorpio is about death, endings, transformation, sexuality, intensity, depth, rage, resentments, stubbornness, powerful feelings and emotions, research, spying, imagination, hidden energies, the shadow.
Sounds kind of contradictory. How could I bring these almost opposing powers together with intentions? My first though was that sometimes in order to begin a new cycle "road blocks" need clearing.
My book is my project right now, so what aspects of it are new? First, I need to put more heart and more of me in the book, and my Aquarius nature tells me to skim over the top and not go too deep, not be too vulnerable. But my Virgo Ascendant won't allow this--it won't let me finish until I put a large dose of "ME" into the writing. Both my Sun and Ascendant are being touched by this eclipse. So, second, my intention is to ask for help going deep to uncover and bring out the perfect feelings, words and stories that allow me to be vulnerable and open my heart. Since I have fears of going too deep, I'll ask for help releasing the fears that block my way.
So, as the sun goes down tomorrow it's ceremony time at Connie's house! Tonight, I'll write a statement of my intentions. Tomorrow about 5:00 PM I'll be outside my house with several lit candles, my deck of animal cards and a ceramic flower pot I use for burning. I'll ask my spirit and animal guides to help me open to these intentions. I'll pull a card from my decks to see what guidance it gives, then say my intention out loud. Then I'll burn the paper it's written on. Finally, after making sure the fire is out, I'll leave the ashes to be blown away by the wind. Then I'll pull another card from my deck and thank the spirit and animal guides for their help. My ceremonies are usually quick, but can be longer if need be. I always feel transformed even if the ceremony is simple and short.
If you want to put intention into how the eclipse touches your life, please feel free to use any of these steps to create your own ceremony, and feel free to add your own touches: incense, meditation, singing, chanting, crystal or other singing bowls, drumming and/or your own favorite card deck. If you don't have an outdoor space for burning you could tear your paper into tiny pieces and the next time you're outside let the wind carry them away. Or you could plant these pieces in the dirt of a new plant. And one more thing, have fun with your intentions and your ceremony.
I'd love to hear your intentions and/or your other ceremony ideas, either by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or on my FaceBook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Grandmother-Knight-Consulting/159853307362065. May your path be filled with clarity and peace as you walk into the great and wonderful unknown. Connie Hill/Grandmother Knight
October 13, 2012 -- Being Present
If you keep on saying things are going to be bad, you have a good chance of being a prophet. Isaac Bashevis Singer
Hi Friends Well, autumn has arrived; rain is back. Nights are cooler. I finally had to close my windows and turn on my furnace. I love this time of the year, especially the beauty of brightly colored leaves. I want soup and baked apples and hearty breads. But my thoughts can easily stray to winter and colder weather and the what if's that go along with seasonal changes. Will we have snow or ice or really cold weather. Will I be able to stay warm and be safe? And I could go on and on.
I can be in the future and fear and worry so easily, especially if I watch too much news: there's always something about how bad things are. I know it's easy to fall back into the awfulness that could come, but is that my truth right now?
My present truth is that I've had a wonderful year so far. Good times with my daughters and friends and students. I have good groups I'm part of. I have time to work on my book and time to do my fun volunteer job at the library. I've made a few organizational additions to my house and have lots of things I'm grateful for. Those and many more are my present truths.
Looking into the future at what might happen is not something I can control. I think that urge to predict the future is part of the fight or flight reaction I learned as a kid because of family stresses. I'm working to let go of the need to be constantly vigilant and prepared for any and all possibilities.
One thing that is working for me right now is to give myself kudos for at least one accomplishment each day. I'm also working on a list of what a friend called "drainers." These are things that are usually little and can be done in a small amount of time, but there are a bunch of them and it's difficult to pick which one to do. They can hang around for days, months, or years. While they are waiting to be completed, they drain our energy. So far I've gotten some tree limbs trimmed, a leak patched, gotten rid of a broken window fan and cleaned out my yahoo inbox. Wow, that's quite a lot and the load on my shoulders feel a bit lighter! Accomplishing these things helps me stay more present. While I'm trimming branches or clearing out my inbox it's hard to futurize! And being able to check them off my list brings a smile to my face.
I don't have any magic solutions for staying in the present, but sometimes just taking care of the business at hand helps. I love to hear your suggestions and comments about my monthly topic, either by email (email@example.com) or on my FaceBook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Grandmother-Knight-Consulting/159853307362065. May your path be filled with peace as you walk into the great and wonderful unknown. Connie Hill/Grandmother Knight
September 14, 2012 -- Autumnal Equinox
Balance is the perfect state of still water. Let that be our model. It remains quiet within and is not disturbed on the surface. Confusius
Hi Friends Mid-September and mid-March I begin thinking about balance. (Saturday, September 22 is this years Autumnal Equinox: the time when day and night are equal. The equalizing of light and dark draws me to look at what balance is all about for that particular season. Am I working too much or not enough? Am I sleeping enough? Is my eating balanced with enough veggies to protein, and/or do I need to cut down on sugar, fat, carbs, any or all of these? Is there something that needs doing or not doing to bring me to a more calm place?
Right now, Pluto (in Capricorn) and Uranus (in Aries) are squaring each other (and they will be until March, 2015). This aspect is like what was experienced during the Great Depression, 80 years ago. These two planets squaring each other signal power struggles and unpredictability, and make me think of two warriors struggling for control. Who will win is unknown. What the consequences of one side or the other winning is also unknown.
In the summer Mountain Astrologer article Uranus Square Pluto by Raymond Merriman, the author states that the difference between the two time is "That the former relates to the pain of loss or the ending of a matter or an era. The latter relates to the pain of birth, or the transition from the past into the beginning of a matter or a new era. In other words, things may look and feel difficult right now, but there is hope for a brighter future -- probably much more hope than was present in 1931--1934."
So, we need to think of this transition as a birth, and any female who has given birth knows that the birth process, though wonderful, is not easy. Birthing is uncomfortable and painful while also filled with wonder and awe.
Our focus on balance in this season needs to be about how to stay centered even when chaos surrounds us. To stay balanced we might want to visualize peace and calm inside even though we are surrounded on the outside by unpredictable movement. Many times we find ourselves focusing on the unpredictable movement, which we have no control over, when all we can control is what happens on the inside. So what brings me into balance?
Doing my practices, a piece of chocolate, time at the beach, and/or a movie are all part of what balances for me, especially in the fall. These things help me stay balanced despite unexpected issues cropping up. Asking for help from friends as well as guides from the other side is something I'm learning to do as well. And I have a copy of Ask And It Is Given by my bedside to read each morning after my meditation/contemplation time. What a difference waking up with this gem is turning out to be. My day begins with inspiration instead of fears and worry.
I'm also learning the discipline of slowness by limiting my reading to no more than a couple of pages at a time, when my urge is to read the book in one sitting. Reading small amounts I get to savor little tastes which I can "chew" on the rest of the day. If I read many pages or chapters, what I read won't stay with me for the entire day.
What are the tools you use or that you want to bring into your life for balance, as you walk into this transition time? Please share the resources that help you stay balanced on my FaceBook page, http://www.facebook.com/pages/Grandmother-Knight-Consulting/159853307362065 May your path be filled with whatever balance and peace looks like to you as you walk into the great and wonderful unknown. Connie Hill/Grandmother Knight
August 14, 2012 -- Adapting to Change
"Since the discovery of Uranus the world has gone through rapid change and upheaval. The potential in Uranian technology both excites and terrifies us, and the world... As we enter the Uranus ruled Age of Aquarius we are inspired by visions of new possibilities in ways of living, healing, relating and communicating. Lindsay River and Sally Gillespie, from, The Knot of Time
Hi Friends In spring of 2011, the planet Uranus entered the sign Aries. Among other things, Uranus symbolizes what we least expect, the unconventional, and our need for freedom. Aries is about birthing something new, courage, and I always think of child energy when I think of Aries.
Right now Uranus is giving us fits with all of the unpredictability every where we look. We can't turn on the news without seeing something extreme, dramatic and unexpected. And look at technology, new things are unveiled nearly every day.
Personally, I've had many encounters with Uranus. I remember back in 2000 knowing that I had Uranus transiting my Sun and at the same time an eclipse hitting the same location. I was sure a car accident was inevitable, so I stopped driving for a bit, but no car accident! Instead I fell, and twisted and broke my ankle. An accident, but not the kind I was prepared for!
I was in a cast and not able to drive for sometime, but it also shook me up in other ways, as well. It got me started thinking about the car I was driving (the reason I couldn't drive was that my car had a stick shift) and the noisy apartment I was living in (there were steps that were difficult to traverse with crutches, as well as the noise from a busy street). It was not too long before both of those changed, as well as many other parts of my life--and for the better!
Right now, Uranus is activating seven planets in my chart, everything except my Sun, Mars and Jupiter. Again, it's a time of not knowing what's next. I feel like I'm spinning a lot of the time and my focus is not at all clear. There is always something to learn from each situation or experience. As I said above it's not my time o clarity, and all kinds of unexpected things are showing up. But my spiritual practice of reading, meditation and gratitude, though not clearing away the fog, are keeping my energy well above despair and depression. I still don't know what my next step is, but I realized I need to follow what I preach: to trust and listen to my intuition, and not plan past the next few days. And, I'm finding a good deal of comfort listening to the recording of an astrology reading I got last winter.Are you experiencing the same sense of uneasiness, spinning and lack of clarity? If you have planets in Aries, Libra, Cancer or Capricorn you might be. Though an astrology reading won't make it go away, it might explain what is happening and give you hope that it won't last forever. Listening to my reading is bringing me creative ways to handle the situations instead of feeling out of control. May your path be filled with gratitude and peace as you walk into the great and wonderful unknown. Connie Hill/Grandmother Knight
July 16, 2012 -- Traveling
"And that is just the point... how the world, moist and beautiful, calls to each of us to make a new and serious response. That's the big question, the one the world throws at you every morning. Here you are, alive. Would you like to make a comment?" Mary Oliver
Hi Friends My long time friend, Karen, and I went on a 10 day road trip at the end of June. I was nervous about spending that much time in a car with little time alone with someone else, even as good a friend as Karen and I are. But she was a wonderful traveling companion!
It wasn't until the next to the last night that we got a bit growlie with each other. We had driven more than 500 miles, the longest stretch of our trip, and when we got to Coeur d'Alene in the early evening there were few lodging options. We had been sure we'd be ok, but the area was hosting a large sporting event and there were only a few, much more expensive rooms available.
Both of us were tired and hungry, the kind of hungry where you can't even decide what you want to eat, if you know what I mean. I think we both were just tired and looking forward to being home. We ended up staying in a place that was more expensive than the rest of the places we had stayed, eating at a Denney's like steak house that was close to the motel, and going to sleep really early. Both of us slept like logs. The next morning we were both back to normal and were home by mid-afternoon. We are even talking about our next trip!
Some of the high points of the trip were:
*Going to the 1000 Buddha Garden in Arlee, MT.The garden was not complete yet, but it was still amazing and I got a chance to drum amongst the Buddha, who seemed to smile as I drummed! Go to my Grandmother Knight FaceBook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Grandmother-Knight-Consulting/159853307362065 to see some photos of the garden.
*We spent three days in Billings with my friend Sharlene, who used to live in Tigard. Though she had many demands on her time while we were there, Karen and I very much enjoyed our time with her.
*While in Billings I lead a drumming circle at the Unity Church and had a great time. Most of the group had not drummed before and were nervous that they would not be able "to do it right." But they left feeling great and like they had "mastered" drumming. It was a wonderful group.
*The drive up the west side of Idaho heading toward Montana was also really fun. We drove along the Weiser River which was really beautiful and the rafters were out and having a great time on the water. The scenery was stunning and I highly recommend the drive up Hwy. 95 to Grangeville. The traffic was really light and the road was great, even though it was a secondary road. These are only a few of the great times we had on the road.
If one of your dreams is to take a road trip I encourage you to do it! Lots of fears kept creeping in before we left but I feel freed now and as if I've accomplished an act of personal power by taking this trip.
Where would you go if you had the chance? What do you want to witness before your time here is complete? If road trips are not your dream, what is on your list? There is such a sense of accomplishment and aliveness that comes with stepping up and facing a fear! May your path be filled with gratitude and a sense of power as you walk into the great and wonderful unknown. Connie Hill/Grandmother Knight
June 15, 2012 Just Say Yes
"In this practice we say yes to everyone and everything that happens. When you notice the impulse to disagree, consider whether it is really necessary." ...Jan Chozen Bays, MD
Hi Friends For nearly three years I have been a volunteer for the Tigard Library. In my volunteer job I do some really basic analysis of books that have ten or more holds on them. In performing that job I get to see what's new from some of my favorite authors, as well as titles that just look interesting. My personal hold list gets longer almost each week with exciting new titles to listen to or read. Recently, as I was perusing the list, a book titled How to Train a Wild Elephant by Jan Chozen Bays seized my attention and had to go on my list. When the book arrived I flipped through the pages and found it contained 55 simple and mindful daily practices. Each chapter is short but gives you a description of the exercise, a reminder of what you might need to complete each exercise, discoveries, deeper lessons, and a few final words. As I said before they are simple, as well as mindful. As I flipped through the book one chapter REALLY grabbed my attention and encouraged me go out and purchase the book. That chapter is titled Say Yes. How often in our lives do we begin with a "No" when someone starts speaking, before they have even finished their thoughts? Why is this negative focus so automatic, instead of us being open and really listening to what the other person is saying? Sometimes I even wish I had said yes instead of no when other person has finished what they are saying. In this chapter Jan tells us about first year Japanese Soto Zen students who are told that the only acceptable response to anything they are asked to do during that year is to say "Hai" or yes. She says, "This is powerful training. It cuts through layers of apparent maturity, down to the defiant two-year-old and/or teenager within." And don't we all have one of those hidden away? Of course, there are times we need to say no in abusive situations, but how often do we just answer with a "No" automatically? Next Tuesday is the second Gemini New Moon for this year and I've decided to honor that lunar beginning point with a mindfulness practice of listening fully and saying yes whenever possible. If you find that "No" is easier than "Yes," I hope you'll join me and ask this Gemini, communication-focused Moon for help with the practice or any other practice that speaks to you. And may each of our paths be filled with gratitude, listening and many yes's as we walk into the great and wonderful unknown. Connie/Grandmother Knight
May 19, 2012 --- Working With the Moon, Part 2
"When a caterpillar starts to change into a butterfly it literally falls apart. In the caterpiller's transformation it uses imaginal cells to achieve the change." ...Swami Beyondananda
Last month I talked about how the phases of the moon's affect me and how they might affect you.
During the next 28 days, two other moon/sun related events are happening that only occur a couple of times a year. Both are eclipses and in reality are just more powerful and exact versions of Full and New Moons. First, on Sunday, May 20 we'll experience a New Moon that is also a Solar Eclipse and visible in parts of the Northwest and Western US, and on June 4 there will be a Full Moon that is also a Lunar Eclipse.
Eclipses always happen at either the New or Full Moon and usually occur in pairs, though at times there are three in a row.
My first astrology teacher talked a lot about eclipses. He felt much of their power comes because one or the other body's light was blocked fully or partially for up to several hours. Also, he felt that eclipses are as much as 5-10 times more powerful than a simple Full or New Moon.
Events like earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and social unrest can happening within days of an eclipse. More personally, people may break bones, have accidents and experience life changes around these cycles or they might be more volatile, more passionate, and may experience more emotional swings due to the Moon's influences.
The moon is all about watery things, the emotions and our feelings about people, events, experiences, places, and so on. Moon energy also relates to moods, habits, femininity, sensitivity, intuition, imagination, nurturing, as well as our past.
New Moon/Solar Eclipse: Sunday, May 20 at 4:47 pm. As I said last month "The energy of this phase is about impulse and instinct. Seeds or ideas begin to sprout. So this first cycle is about instinct, not analysis. Your idea is coming to you, what do you want to do with it? What does your intuition tell you? Key ideas: Birth, Instinct." You may see that the new ideas or intuitions are life changing with the eclipse as opposed to being month or two changes.
Sunday's eclipse is in Gemini, which can show up as curious, conversational, and informative. Gemini is a mutable or changeable sign, so this is a great time to focus on what and how you want to change, and the necessary communication. Gemini is usually a bit more out in the world and connected with others. But a new moon leans toward solitude and an inward focus, and this eclipse, with the moon dimming the light of the sun, will tend to emphasize digging up and understanding the past.
Eclipse cycles recur about every 18+ years so what was happening back then for you? Where were you? What did you change?
Eighteenish years ago I was thinking about moving to the beach, something I had wanted to do since I was a teenager. My "plan" was to move in 2-5 years, but the pull was so strong that in less than six months I was there. Looking back I want to honor that part of me that is able to dive into new experiences and adapt to what needs to happen. I'm counting on this eclipse to help me finishing my book, another Gemini endeavor.
Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse: Fourteen or fifteen days into the cycle or June 4 at 8:35 pm. From last month: "The moon is very visible now. It may even be so bright with light and ideas that it keeps us awake. The Full Moon is the farthest it gets from the sun each month. This phase is about illumination or shining light on the potential that was born at the New Moon. Key ideas: Illumination, Polarity."
This eclipse is in Sagittarius which brings idealism, philosophical endeavors, higher learning, a restless need to cut restrictions, an urge to travel, a focus on what we put our trust in. Many of us have put our trust in something outside of us, jobs, banks, relationships, and have found that our trust has been taken for granted and/or abused. Though Sagittarius does have a sense of being bigger than ourselves, it also asks us to stand in our personal power and unleash the energy of the only thing we truly know, ourselves.
Again, look back 18+ years: How did your personal philosophy change at that time? Did you need more freedom? Did you move, or change jobs, or take on a new world view? What changes will you be open to beginning in June?
For me the whole idea of putting out my world view in book form has been terrifying, but I'm ready, now. I'm learning to ask for help from universal forces and trust what comes back to me.
Later in June a friend and I are heading out on a road trip to Iowa. Watch for recaps of our trip and to find out where we are on my blog (gmnite.wordpress.com). More about this in the next newsletter!
If you are a Gemini, Sagittarius, Virgo or Pisces or have any planets in these signs you may find yourself on the precipice of change, know that you are not alone. Ask yourself how you can welcome the changes and find ways to help you avoid and/or work through the attached fear. Email me if you think a reading would help.
And may each of our paths be filled with gratitude as we walk into the great and wonderful unknown.
Connie Hill/Grandmother Knight
April 20, 2012 -- Working With the Moon
"There is a time and a place for everything, and everything has it's place... When the time is right... when destiny says it is right...
it all happens with little of no effort.
Bernice Prill Grebner, Everything Has a Phase
Many months when the last few days of a moon cycle roll around, I find myself feeling blocked or frustrated or moving much slower than I'd like, struggling against the pull to be internal and contemplative. I feel the need to push, maybe getting ready for a birth as the New Moon arrives?
Since reminders about these natural rhythms help me I decided to share these major monthly moon phases and give a few clues about working with them instead of against them.
Each phase lasts about three and a half days and may be stronger or weaker depending on the sign it is in and what else is going on with the planets. Examining these phases can help us direct our energy in the best possible ways to accomplish what we want.
We are now in the Balsamic Moon phase getting prepared for a new cycle to begin. (This phase is described below.) Some key words for this phase are death, plowing under, rest, contemplation preparing for birth.
New Moon: Saturday, April 21 at 11:51 pm. The energy of this phase is about impulse and instinct. Seeds or ideas begin to sprout. So this first cycle is about instinct, not analysis. Your idea is coming to you, what do you want to do with it? What does your intuition tell you? Key ideas: Birth, Instinct.
Crescent Moon: Three and a half days after the New Moon, about April 25. This is the time when the sprout begins to break free of the seed pod and send out shoots and roots. At this time you might dare to move your project a bit "outside the box" and make it truly yours. Key idea: Breaking free.
First Quarter: At the seven to eight day point in the cycle, or on April 29 at 2:57 am. The sprout breaks through the ground at this point, with action and expansion. You may want to expand your idea and make it bigger than you first envisioned it. Key ideas: Expansion, Action.
Gibbous Moon: Eleven day into the cycle or about May 2. At this point you might find that you need to weed or prune back your plant, or your idea. This is the time of discrimination, what isn't contributing to your project and needs to be eliminated? Key ideas: Discrimination, Pruning.
Full Moon: Fourteen or fifteen days into the cycle or May 5 at 8:35 pm. The moon is very visible now. It may even be so bright with light and ideas that it keeps us awake. The Full Moon is the farthest it gets from the sun each month. This phase is about illumination or shining light on the potential that was born at the New Moon. Key ideas: Illumination, Polarity.
Disseminating: Eighteen days into the cycle or about May 8. This is a time of sharing, of harvest and distribution. I think of taking the harvested crops to market, or teaching and sharing the ideas that have come out of the work begun at the New Moon. Key ideas: Sharing, Distribution.
Last Quarter Moon: Twenty-one days into the cycle or May 12 at 2:47 pm. This phase is about looking at what is expected and perhaps breaking free of those expectations. Do you need to take your idea out to bigger venues or use new way of publicizing it? Key idea: Breaking free.
Balsamic: Twenty five days into the cycle or about May 16 or 17. We need to go inside and prepare for the new cycle that will begin in three and a half days. This is not a time of action. It is about rest and contemplation and regeneration for the next cycle to begin on May 20. Key idea: Contemplation.
New Moon: And the cycle begins again! You can use this guide every moon cycle to help you work with the Moon's energy in the best way possible.
If you find yourself feeling blocked or frustrated or lacking the energy to move ahead, look at the moon's phase and see if you are working against the natural cycles. Maybe it's time to rest and read or meditate instead of pushing ahead.
And may each of our paths be filled with gratitude and abundance as we walk into the great and wonderful unknown.
Connie Hill/Grandmother Knight
March 21, 2012 -- Welcome Spring & Gratitude
"As muddy water is best cleared by leaving it alone, it could be argued that those who sit quietly and do nothing are making one of the best possible contributions to a world in turmoil."
Alan Watts, The Way of Zen
It's that time of the year again. Spring 2012 arrived this past Monday evening, March 19. Even though our Northwest weather season has been crazy and backwards--warmer and much less rain than usual in December and into January, and lots of rain and even snow since the middle of February--I can feel spring in the air. Daffodils are already blooming and many other plants are threatening to bloom earlier than usual. And though it's cold today, can't you smell the beginnings of spring?
A little over a week ago Day Light Savings time began. It's always exciting and to me, means more light. The night before the change my youngest daughter said it was her favorite day of the year! Many people complain because the hour we loose can mess up our sleep patterns. But my daughter said she loves that day because she appreciates the growing light so much. She said it really makes her feel like spring is on the way. I agree! Morning people may not be as happy, but that extra light in the evenings is so pleasant. Don't you agree?
Spring, to me, means light and beginnings and clearing out what we no longer need. There is a sense of movement this time of year, like we can begin or finish anything we've longed to accomplish. The time for new growth has arrived and we all have a new sense of power to achieve and create and go for it!
Another spring thing I'm filled with is gratitude. Right now, gratitude feels really important to me. I have so many people to feel grateful for in my life. So many people have supported me over the years, through attendance at my events, making drums with me, asking me to read their astrology charts for them, sending me emails of comment and appreciation, and for being my friends, and I have so many lovely friends! I thank all of you for your support. Thank you, thank you, thank you for being part of my life.
What does spring make you contemplate? Are you feeling like it's time to make changes or begin something new or clean out your closets or thank someone? Share your spring thoughts with me on FaceBook (http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Grandmother-Knight-Consulting/159853307362065) or just send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org). I'd love to hear from you with any comments. May the new light of spring bring a sense of fun, play, light, creativity, accomplishment and/or gratitude to each of you.
And may each of our paths be filled with gratitude as we walk into the great and wonderful unknown.
Connie Hill/Grandmother Knight
February 20, 2012 -- Girls Don't Play Drums
It doesn't interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing. Oriah Mountain Dreamer
I just realized that it's been nearly 25 years that I've been teaching people to make drums! If you had asked me all those years ago how long I'd teach drum making, 25 years would never have come to mind. I think I'd have thought a few years and a few classes, and then on to something else, but I'm still at it!
Recently, I figured out that I had taught more than 300 people had made drums with me over the years. That's an amazing number of drums! Last summer one of my students made two drums to take with her when she moved back to Germany. Another woman came from Colorado to visit family and made her drum. A few years ago a person made a drum that she ended up taking to Russia with her. A couple of women ave come up from the south Oregon coast to make her drum. One friend has taken her drum with her as she moved to Montana.
I've taught classes at the beach, many here in the Portland and Tigard area. I've taught high school classes as well as many adults. Most students have been female, but a few brave men have also made drums with me.
My connection with drums actually began when I was seven. In second grade we were asked if we wanted to learn a musical instrument, and my response was "yes, I wanted to learn to play drums."
My Mom told me that girls didn't play drums (though she now says she didn't say that! And don't you think some of her reason might have been the noise associated with learning this instrument?) I'm sure back in the 1950's, in the mid-West it was pretty widely accepted that a girls place in a band were with a violin or flute. But these instruments didn't interest me. If I couldn't play the drums nothing else would do.
For more than 30 years I went about my life, finished school, grew up, occupied a number of jobs, raised two daughters, and so on. Then, after a job lay off, drums came back into my life. I took a class, made my first drum, and immediately knew it was something I was called to teach. It took about six months to screw up my courage, and to get the supplies and my first group of students together. But from then on drumming and drum making have been a passion for me.
Now, all these years later I thank my Mom for telling me girls didn't play drums. She is a big supporter these day. And I'm sure that drums would not be such a passion for me if I'd been able to learn drumming back then. Thank you, Mom, I'm so grateful to you for putting up obstacles then, and for supporting me now.
What was important to you when you were a child, that you were not able to do? Have you been able to make your way back to that dream? Maybe the magic of 2012 can help you get back to that aspiration. Let me know if I can help.
And may each of our paths be filled with excitement as we walk into the great and wonderful unknown.
Connie Hill/Grandmother Knight
January 21, 2012 -- Change Your Perspectives
We are not what we know but what we are willing to learn. Mary Catherine Bateson
Have you had your email hacked? It just happened to me and it doesn't feel very good. 2012, began easily and well and I decided my focus should be on what abundance and prosperity really means to me. Then this email thing happened. With it came uncertainty and feelings of lost safety. Since I got my first dial up internet connection I've loved it and felt safe using it. But for a couple days my trust levels dropped. The I began to distance myself a bit and to see to in other ways.
First, as far as I know the hacking wasn't personal, anyone would have been fine, and though it was scary and I felt uneasy, it was pretty easy to correct by changing my password and security questions and a few of my habits. I now log off at the end of each day.
From an astrological view point I can see what is going on, Uranus is impacting my chart. Uranus, which rules things it's hard to plan for, and the good and bad of humanity, also rules electricity and technology!
Second, being a MAC person, I've been cocky. While PC's have been getting viruses and been hacked fairly regularly, my trusty MACs never have. Over the years I've felt a bit superior to PC owners. This hacking encourages me to be more humble.
Third, being hacked and abundance are connected for me. There are always gifts in everything that happens to or around me, and this intrusion into my email account is no exception.
1. I see I needed to be more vigilant with passwords, changing them more often and logging out of accounts when I'm done. But, I don't want to go overboard and stop using my computer or become really uptight about being hacked. But there are opportunities here.
2. I thought I was pretty humble, but maybe not enough. Maybe it's time to be more compassionate about my own humanness.
3. I see for the 2 millionth time, that stuff happens and that I need to avoid getting sucked into it and letting it change my feelings of gratefulness and prosperity.
4. I may not know all of the gifts and lessons from this experience and probably won't for sometime and that's alright. I'm also reminded that prosperity can be windfalls of money or it can be the gifts of seeing things in new ways and of remembering not to take things personally.
5. I'm grateful that I was able to turn the feelings of insecurity and fear around quickly to hope and abundance and to not stay stuck and feeling out of control.
For all of these points and the many more I'll see in upcoming months I feel a great sense of abundance. And I wish us all many gifts as we walk on our paths into the great unknown. Connie/Grandmother Knight