Sitting vs moving meditations

Do you meditate?  What type of meditations do you do ? Are you sitting ?

I had tried on and off for decades. The 5-10 minutes at end of yoga class never really did much for me. Seems like I was busy with my to do list. And that is even after going through extensive yoga teacher training ! But over the past 3 years or more I have been really exploring different types of meditation. I want to share an insight that I had this morning . It is now 6:20 am. Having been awake since 3:30, yep …  I played in bed with cozy head phone strap on and once again went into a space I can no honestly describe . I have really gotten into binaural sound meditation amongst other ones. I lay there ( not sitting up ) and listen to  about an hour meditation  ( yep way too long for regular daytime use for me !) from Centerpointe called Holosync ( one called Dive then it goes into Immersion) .   Pretty wild I can literally feel my brain response . Some days I actually feel hung over from it other days huge clarity. But then I am also presently working with Chopra and Oprah’s 21 day live streaming meditation. This particular series is called “Getting Unstuck “.

SO what is the point of my rambling when I know my priorities of today are NOT writing on this blog? Well by break of dawn today  I was tending to pool matters and tree watering and then with the beautiful sunrise and decided to do Chopra/Oprah’s mediation while taking a brief  walk. This entailed  re-listening to day 9 of “Getting Unstuck”  (which seems to be VERY much issue for me.)

Re-listening seems to be important  cause it seems so often I forget what was said or REALLY struggle with the silent mantra mediation that is probably around 10 minutes (?) of the whole thing. WOW as I walked quietly at sunrise I found I was MUCH better at staying with the mantra than when I sit or lie down  (anytime of day.)

Considering that I have been enjoying a summer practice of doing laps 4-5 days a week for 40-65 minutes each swim, I can not help but wonder what it would be like to listen with water proof ear buds  and waterproof iPhone or iPod…ugh sounds like too much more set up to swim. SO for  now… I am  aware that the mind has endless ability to explore AND  find focus as I glide through the water, or walk , or hike, but for me the “skill set” of sitting or lying  in meditation and keeping a mantra  still does not compare. Still working on it though 🙂

Namaste.

PS my run on sentences in my writing  that my blog software gently reminds me of will hopefully improve as my mantras get more locked down 🙂

 

Mastering mind body issues concerning matters of the heart

heart condtion hero inspiring
Training for triathlon gave Karen belief in herself despite all the physical challenges her heart presented her with.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My heart goes out with compassion and  personal curiosity to the  people who have worked hard mastering their mind over their body issues,  go from feeling like dirt to feeling, and stay committed to feeling  delicious.

While doing laps at Cactus Pool this past summer  I met an inspiring woman that really carried that thought home.

Side note: I have to say doing laps at Cactus pool is inspiring . Being there during lap time I am surrounded not by grade school,  high school or even college swim teams practicing, while I do my laps. Do not get me wrong I find those groups to be entertaining and  inspiring too. These lap times though  are filled with swimmers of varied adult ages that frequently appear to me to be well versed in the daily practice of doing laps … for life.  Or that is the story I surmise from most of them as I watch them. I on the other hand am more of a fair weather swimmer. I tend to be more fickle with my workouts . NOTE , this is  especially true when it is  below 80 degrees out side ( yep, even with the Arizona sun shining and swimming laps in a heated pool ). Honestly swimming inside with smell of chlorine bombarding me has never been desirable, and why would I want to when I could be hiking in this glorious Arizona winter ?  … but I digress.

When I  met Karen this past summer  doing laps I  found myself in a conversation with a woman who may have kept her health condition private for many years from her co-workers, and friends … but considering she was back in Scottsdale to have yet another “tune up” with a cardiologist at Mayo clinic, I was in the right place at the right time to hear about her true success story and to become  part of her fan club ! And I must say I have signed up!

You see  in 1975 when Karen was age 6 her pediatrician sent her to a cardiologist with a heart murmur. This began a life of procedures and findings  and varied surgeries that I honestly feel I need a medical license to describe well. She introduced me to words that I have never heard of. I am not going to go into the gruesome details here but honestly I can say it would have been VERY easy for Karen to never have become the Triathlon winner , and  medal winning swimmer, and  master swim coach that she is!

I love being reminded of all the ways we can go from feeling like dirt to delicious. Despite the fact that her mom was not physically fit herself she always was supportive of Karen pursuing being an athlete which has probably been the best medicine for her! It was in training and being in triathlons that she truly learned to believe in herself !  Although she is reevaluating the harsh reality of what being an extreme athlete can do to to the heart enlarging the atria ( ok I start glazing over when she talks that way ) being that hers is naturally enlarged. The path  she has gone through in life is actually humbling .

Thank you Karen , you embody the concept of going from feeling like dirt to delicious. May I wish you many many many more laps at what ever pace you choose these days. You are a true inspiration.

Cranberry Salsa- Versions 1 and 2 and ideas for serving

Linda's_Cranberry_Salsa_0929©_2015_Copyright_Linda_Enger_Photography

Linda’s tart, flavorful, spicy and a tad sweetened cranberry salsa

l-12oz bag of fresh whole cranberries

1/8 cup Raw honey

5 drops Stevia

1 tsp Xylitol

3- drops Wild Orange Doterra Essential Oil

1-Serrano hot Pepper

( Or other pepper of your choice, but if you leave this out it is more like the original Chutney)

DIRECTIONS

1. Combine orange, apples, and cranberries into a food processor.

Pulse until ingredients are finely chopped.

2. Pour ingredients into large bowl. Add sweeteners

3. Add 3 drops Wild Orange essential oil. Stir to combine.

4. Put salsa into airtight container and let it rest in the fridge for 1-4 hours.

Note:My orange and pepper were organic and home grown .

I made this recipe for Thanksgiving 2015= ,RAVE reviews ! This was in place of traditional Cranberry sauce ( canned or home made) served with Turkey and the Vegetarians loved it too !

FYI- I started with the Cranberry Chutney Recipe from Doterra essential oils , and as always played with my food, less sugar , less sweet, more healthy!

Version #2 – spicier

Skip the orange but add 5 drops Doterra Wild Orange oil not 3

Add 2 or more hot peppers not one

WONDERFUL DESERT IDEAS:

Serve as parfait layered with Easy Coconut Maple  Whipped Cream or NO sugar Coconut Ice Cream…( will post my recipes ) and home made granola ( I will post my recipe for that as well ).

You may already know about me:

I like to play with my food . I do not always follow directions so well to the T. I do not believe that our taste buds or bodies were meant to be bombarded by sugar or heavy sweets of any kind. Therefore I am always working on making recipes that suit that way of life. Especially when someone has Diabetes , or any inflammatory health issues and wants natural healthy eating!

Recipe by : DirttoDelicious.net  Linda Enger December 3, 2015

Morning moving meditation vs huge to do list

I crave my morning moving  meditation.Yeah , its that time of year. SOOO hard to be ignoring the huge to do list.  The to do list that  gets even crazier now. Be it the gym or yoga, or hiking or walking or 20 squats at home , what ever! How do I  NOT  let that time fall off the list? I say as I fall victim to the magnet in my pants taking hold of the magnet on my chair at my desk… HMMM where are my  hiking boots ? I know my brain is working full steam early am so … taking a 5 minute wacko break may help more often during the day. morning meditation, hiking, sunrise, Arizona

 

Essential Oil users please read this !

I have been using essential oils for decades and once I found Doterra,  back in 2013 I fell in love with the products , the science behind their products, and the company .

I recently got a great article sent to me from Doterra Science concerning ideal amounts recommended when using Doterra Essential Oils. Really valuable info being that it is very easy to go overboard with the products.

Please check out the article and the chart that really puts a scientific light on how much is too much 🙂

http://doterrascienceblog.com/recommended-ideal-amounts

http://doterrascienceblog.com/essential-oil-metabolism/

“The Ideal Amount column states how much total essential oil a user should take at a time. This amount can be repeated every 4-6 hours, for amounts no greater than the 24-hour Maximum amount. Internal use refers to taking essential oils in a capsule or a softgel form. Oral use refers to essential oils taken in water or other liquid, or under the tongue. There is no recommendation made for aromatic use, as this greatly depends on the size of the room and other variable factors. As always, moderation is best.”

If you are interested in learning more about the oils, specific conditions that you may want to explore help from, and ordering any of the products please ask me or check out mydoterra.com/lindaenger

What kind of stuff in life makes you feel delicious, and thank you dear veterans

Of course we know doing what we love to do always makes us feel better about ourselves and our life. Yadayadayada.  But sometimes it is overwhelming for me that there are so many things I love to do, want to do, need to do, have to do,  and that make me feel better when I do them .

Example at hand. I love to hike around sunrise and sunset. Sunrises can always be more problematic,especially  depending upon time of year, day of week etc.  Even more so with  photographing sunrises.

The iphone has become a good hiking companion for me: Podcasts, music, writing down notes to myself , photos and videos ( even though I still am having hard time taking them too seriously ). There has been many a time I have been so glad to have the opportunity to NOT have a  REAL camera. ( will not get into here the good and bad aspects of hiking with access to text, email or phone calls) .

So when a friend of mine asked me to help him locate an ideal  sunrise shot of a saguaro for his composite photographic art it got me to do something that I know makes  me feel delicious. The iphone scouting photos I sent him were a fun distraction from my “real” hike . More than that though it was “fun”  getting back into carrying the camera and tripod out at sunset with a real goal in mind, and with a partner in crime ….. honestly, it is a totally different kind of feeling delicious than my morning walking meditations… but both are so good for the  essence of what makes me feel delicious.

Yesterday was veteran’s day. I took this photo this past Sunday. When processing it yesterday I could not help but sense  I had a Saguaro  saluting  to all those veterans past, present and future who give so much .

What have you done today that makes you feel delicious?

What do you try to do everyday that gives you that buzz?

 

 

GATEWAY TRAIL_ © 20151108_01_8956web

My answer to my unrealistic to do list … do nothing, it actually helps me get things done!

I am a major to do list writer.Almost every 24 hours (with  many editing notes and check marks in between)  I like to dump  out my busy to do list banging around in my head on paper . Yep , a spiral notebook that seems to be easier to get stuff down faster than ANY digital means. That, along with my personal life hacker tracker and  I can actually have a better grip on where my  illusions of grandeur wish list of dos end, and reality of what gets done begins. But the best part of the overwhelm that really seems to get me back on track ? After the mid day review… I usually take a 30 minute to 1 hour meditation/nap  break that most Hard to do in lots of work situations. I know. I used to close the blinds and lie under my desk with the door closed in my studio years ago 🙂 I have also been know to tell clients I need to go away for 30 minutes to hide and regroup during a long day shoot.

Kind of like starting a new day, mid day ! What you read about meditation is all true. Doing  nothing really does help getting lots of stuff done, with much more clarity!

So say no to those wasted  attempts to finding  something left in that tired  brain and say yes to checking out . Hope it helps you too.

Amazing how shutting down briefly really lights up my barin
Amazing how shutting down briefly really lights up my brain. Dare I call it a reboot?  Nothing surprising here to readers who regularly meditate  … or nap  🙂

What happens when you fall in love with your summer fling?

I know what it feels like to feel like dirt. In more ways than I wish to share. But when the outside temperature is past 103 degrees (as it was today on Oct 1 ) and it has been that way for months,  I accept the fact that I have truly , passionately fallen in love with my summer fling.

Ok …. as you probably know if you read my posts and know me at all I am one of those crazy people that do not give up gardening in the brutal heat of the desert southwest summer. Honestly though by 9am I am drenched in my own salt and wiped out, but really gardening is just not the same as good old outdoor exercise and I do love the outdoors. BUT , I have NO desire to hike or walk and ride or even get in and out of cars in this heat. AND thanks to my husband I have become much more protective of my skin than I did for way too many years. Gone are the days of hiking in shorts and tank tops for me.

But I have a very true confession. This summer I fell madly and passionately in love and although I have not thrown caution to the wind completely  ( I have taken many measures to protect myself  ) I know I am still very vulnerable .

I have grown passionately in love with  doing laps at the Scottsdale City  Aquatic Center!  Not exactly an extra marital affair so what is the big deal ?  Well sadly the  lap lane hours and my schedule have left me having to choose between truly safe swimming ( aka rarely due to the sun exposure ) or throwing caution to the wind and  swimming mid day with protection . Honestly there is just not enough protection ! With a swim shirt on and lubed up with what seems to be 1/2 tube of sunscreen per session I still know I am getting way more exposure than  is wise. AH, but the temperature of my body FINALLY internally REALLY cools down while I find the motivation to truly huff and puff , and  I watch my thoughts disappear into the water. I actually am beginning to think the meditation  and  breath work that goes on in my  40-60 minute lap sessions truly surpass any yoga class , definitely working out in a gym surrounded by the add of all the tv monitors and music and people to relate to as I attempt to find a mindful moment. -swimiming_in_gratitude©_2013_Linda_Enger_Photography7091

SO for now I am totally into my summer  love, and wondering how fickle my love will be. FYI my hiking boots have been getting used in the garden so they are not extremely jealous and get their fair share of my salt.

Meditation and naps and feeling delicious

motion_28762014__©_Linda_Enger_Photography

For years upon decades I always heard about meditation. I was so aware of the cornucopia  of techniques. I just never felt I did meditate. Well I have grown to see that differently . For some odd reason  the old philosophical question comes to mind “If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” . If you fall asleep for an hour when you meditate and wake up more clear headed and relaxed, was it not a great session of mediation?

In all seriousness I can think of many meditation attempts where my head hurt from “trying ” to meditate.  With that said I have grown to find for me moving meditations during walking in nature at sunrise or sunset listening to certain kinds of music and consciously being aware of my breath, or swimming laps where breath is obviously a focus, and focusing my mind while I swim on an affirmation while swimming  have been great. I have also grown to really enjoy working on my meditation techniques using varied forms of mp3 or online support through headphones. Unfortunately many of the ones I tried did not inspire me… AND  I used to think that  it was a cheat, that it was not totally self generated. NOT anymore.  But for some time now I have found  a very special love of my at home meditation breaks during the day with   yoga nidra, Silva Meditation techniques, or now also exploring Centerpointe’s Holosync. I am not going to say it has worked for me to meditate upon waking, like some folks I know.  BUT taking a break during the day …. yummy! When I “wake up”  from 60  minutes of meditation …. I am feeling mighty  delicious! I may be falling asleep during meditation  but for me…. I would say that is not such a bad thing 🙂 How about you?

My first batch of Kombucha Scoby

Kind of looks like beer here, but my scoby is pretty impressive I think!
Now that I know how much sugar and black tea goes into it, I am not really sure I am buying in totally with all the health aspect of Kombucha ye…but it really is a fun science experiment. AND being that I am notoriously not good at following directions…. I let it sit for 6 weeks instead of 1-4 weeks, and got a 3/4 plus” scoby not a 1/4″ one. Now I have my first official batch of Kombucha brewing with that scoby and looking forward to making it into Ginger Kombucha serving it nice and cold wine glasses. A shout out thank you to thekitchn.com for the great recipes!

45 minutes multi- tasking while doing laps.

-swimiming_in_gratitude©_2013_Linda_Enger_Photography7091

I have been “attempting” to have a daily gratitude, meditation  and affirmation  and visualization practice for years and years…. and can honestly not tell you how hard it has been. True ugly confession. I have fallen off those wagons many a time to be run over ( in my own mind)  by the daily meditation wheels of enlightenment.

Intellectually I feel they are all truly wonderful and helpful and blah blah blah!

Consistency . Really does make a difference. That is exactly my challenge. Dirty secret.

Well as long as it is  a desirable temperature for me for swimming  I think I have found a really cool ( pun intended ) way to keep up my practice . 45 minutes doing laps.  I breath really well when I swim, and I am in isolation and then lock my brain in on repeating, affirmations, gratitude list, mantra , rinse repeat , stroke, breath, stroke, breath…. 45minutes later….. ah…..

Please let me know if you try it what you think. Can be the difference of going from dirt to delicious !

This busy bee’s creative soul is very grateful to have had an inspiring get away

Although I have not been posting as regularly as I had hoped to when I  got this blog started it  CERTAINLY is not because I have not been working on content.

With that said I would like to add that  having spent 12 days this summer between NY and DC areas really were inspiring. It was great being back in the mode of my street photography,  and running around museums and galleries ( literally burned off some edges of some new sneakers ) . The trip  really put a creative fire in my belly. It has been 4 weeks  ( today ) since I got home and I have been cranking it up with painting, mixed media, shooting photos in my garden and in my studio with treasures from my garden against Chakra Healing Series. I have messing with photos from the trip  to make a separate blog from the images and get family photo treasures scene by …. well family!  AND big reality check…. working on write up and visual support materials to get funding and exhibition ….  and with that said I thought this recent busy bee image I shot in our garden with a night bloomer in it’s full brief beauty seemed very approriate.

Exact opposite of what I was finding myself shooting in NY,NJ, MD and DC
Exact opposite of what I was finding myself shooting in NY,NJ, MD and DC