Crystal Understanding

After studying the chakras and their purpose, I set out to discover how to keep them in balance for myself and others. I will remind you that I am not Wiccan nor do I practice any types of magicks. Again I turned to the internet and am thankful to have Google in my life otherwise I would be at my local library for hours on end because all good information can be found in books. I discovered that crystals and chakras work well together with the crystals being able to stimulate and heal the chakras and thereby helping heal ourselves. As a nurse, I was very sceptical of this process, but as a healer I could see the value of all types of care.

Once the decision was made to gather crystals for my own use, I went full steam ahead. Initially I ordered my first five from an online site and the seller added an extra stone as a thanks so my beginners’ set was complete. I then had a stone for most chakras and some have interchangeable uses. Here’s my initial set.

Set of five “beginner’s” stones


These five were the ones I was told to start with although they didn’t cover all the chakras and they are, from left to right; a clear quartz, a citrine, a rose quartz (which doesn’t like it’s picture being taken) a green aventurine and an amethyst. I really thought I would be most drawn to amethyst as I’ve always loved the colour but it turned out that the green aventurine is the one I’m attuned to. I held each crystal in my hand for a few minutes to see if I could feel anything from them and when I held my aventurine, it warmed almost immediately. I carry this one with me constantly. I have used it a few times to ease headache pain and now I can’t remember the last time I had a headache. I have added to my collection with carnelian, jade, blue lace agate, lapis lazuli, sodalite, bloodstone, black obsidian, pyrite, and red jasper. I now have covered the main chakras and have a few others for more specific uses.

When I received my crystals, I cleaned them by allowing cool, filtered water to run over them and then soaked them for about fifteen minutes. Please remember that not all crystals can be left to soak in water, salt based crystals will dissolve in water so be careful! New to you crystals tend to pick up energy from whoever has handled them so a cleansing step is very important. If there is still mud on your crystal, it can be cleaned off with a new soft toothbrush. Some folks prefer to smudge their stones with sage, sweetgrass or incense. Spend about five to seven minutes smudging by wafting the smoke over the rocks with a feathered fan. Don’t use your hand; as the smoke rises it pulls negative energies away from the crystals and if you’re using your hand, that negativity will enter your body.

After I cleansed my crystals, I set them in the sunlight for twenty-four hours to charge them. Another way is to put them in the moonlight for the same period of time, this is especially good if done during the full moon period. If one of my crystals is used a lot, I will flick any negativity away and then blow on it to reset it for use on myself. If I use them on someone else, which I haven’t yet but plan to do, I intend to do a smudge cleanse afterward.

I am happy with my crystals and am looking forward to using them more. My next step will be to cleanse my chakras using my crystal quartz pendulum. I’ll be telling you all about that experience for sure!

Pyrite and crystal quartz pendulum









Getting to Know My Chakras


Meditation is helping. I am calmer and have more organized thoughts. I wondered what other tools there are for me and others to use. Many years ago I studied reflexology, became a practitioner and was aware of, and able to, stroke auras. This was before such “out of the box” practices were the norm and I was a little embarrassed by my interest so I tended to hide it from most of my acquaintances. I used reflexology sparingly but became adept at stroking bad energy away from those on whom I practiced. It was never a successful business venture and I didn’t keep up the practice. Fast forward to now and I wish I had continued to do reflexology and study even more about the metaphysical.

My meditation routine has really helped with concentration and ability to stay calm and focused (most of the time). The next logical step for me, was to go deeper into how and why these practices work. So I’ve begun learning about our chakras, their purpose and how to maintain balance in my life.

A very basic sketch of the position of our seven basic chakras

This rough sketch shows the seven major chakras. Since these are the most important ones, I decided to start here. Much more information can be found on the other chakra areas but these are the ones to start with as a beginner.

The first (1) is the Root Chakra, named I think, because it is at the base of the spine in the tailbone area, the “root” of the body. This is our foundation and enhances one’s feeling of being grounded. It is responsible for survival issues such as financial independence, money and food.

Second is the Sacral Chakra located at the lower abdomen about two inches below the navel and two inches in. It helps connect with the people around us, our ability to accept others and to accept new experiences. It also contributes to our sense of abundance, well being, pleasure and sexuality.

Our third chakra is the Solar Plexus. It is the located at the upper abdomen in the stomach area. This one gives us the ability to be confident and in control. Through this chakra we  have self-worth, self-confidence and self-esteem.

The fourth chakra is the Heart Chakra. This is located at the centre of the chest, just above the heart. As you would expect it is responsible for our ability to love. Joy, inner peace as well as love come from this chakra.

Next on the list is the Throat Chakra, located of course in the throat. It gives us the ability to communicate. It is responsible for self-expression and truth.

Our sixth chakra is the Third Eye. It is located on the forehead between the brows. The ability to focus on issues and see the big picture comes from the third eye chakra. It is responsible for intuition, imagination, wisdom and the ability to think and make decisions.

Finally we have the Crown Chakra. Situated at the very top of the head, it is the highest chakra and represents our ability to be fully connected spiritually. It also gives us our inner and outer beauty and pure bliss.


Calm & Relaxed




As I mentioned in my previous blog, I decided to start meditating. It’s not something I know a lot about but because I felt so scattered, I thought I could really benefit from this. I want to be able to focus on the task at hand and not have my thoughts dash off somewhere else in the middle of something. I am an early riser so I can set aside that time and do my meditation without interruption. Now for the big question; how do I do this?

In my younger days I did some yoga but that really was just for laughs with some friends and I never really took the instructions about meditation seriously. Fast forward to the present and I am much older and physically unable to assume the “lotus” or any other position and I haven’t found a “yoga for mature adults” class yet. I’m not riddled with arthritis and I haven’t had any joint replacement surgery yet but the old hips and knees just don’t bend the way they used to. The mind is willing but the body is weak! Still I refused to fall back on the excuse that I’m too old to do this. I love  Google and started to search meditation how to’s. Every site told me I had to sit on my mat on the floor & assume the lotus position. I was getting discouraged until I found one that said it didn’t matter where I was or how I sat as long as it was quiet and I could be comfortable. Finally a site that understands what it’s like! So now I can sit on the side of the bed or on a low chair or stool. My mother-in-law has a low tub chair that she doesn’t use in the tub anymore and it’s a perfect height. I think I’ll get myself one though I know I’ll have to pretty it up a bit. An oversized pillow might work too, or one of those beanbag chairs. It all depends on how close to the floor you want to be and how comfortable you are there.

My meditation is very simple and when I’m finished I am calm and relaxed and ready to go about my daily tasks. Once comfortably seated, I do cross my legs at the ankles and keep my back straight. This opens up my breathing and allows me to concentrate on the meditation. I place my left hand, palm up, about four finger widths below my navel. Then the right hand palm up on my left and bring my thumbs together resting them at my navel. Sitting up straight helps place my hands in their correct position.

I start with breathing, slowly inhale and exhale through my nose. No deep mouth breathing or chanting is necessary because it’s what your mind is telling you not the rest of your body. Once I have levelled my breathing, I start to picture the fresh breaths in as white, pure energy and the breathing out as the dark, negative energy flowing out.  This is repeated for at least twenty-one breaths. Then I start to visualize successfully completing my main tasks for the day. By the time I’m finished the breathing portion, I am ready to organize my list for the day and I no longer worry about getting everything done or what to do first. Somehow I am able to put activities in order of importance and even better I get things done!

I really think that this simple meditation exercise has resulted in a much more calm and relaxed me. I am blogging again, I’ve started writing fiction again, I have placed exercise at the top of my daily list, just to name a few of the things I enjoy but wasn’t making time for on a daily basis.

I’d love to know your thoughts on meditation so comment away and share with others who may benefit.




















Back to Reality



I am back to writing, after about eight months of not writing and feeling quite guilty about it. I kept telling myself that I didn’t have time to write anything so I just didn’t, but really I just didn’t carve out the time I needed to write. So much was going on that I allowed myself to be distracted, yet everything that happened were things that every retiree goes through at some point in time.

To start the hubby and I decided we wanted a home in Florida. Although recent events in that state have made us question our decision, we made a quick trip last December to look at and ultimately purchase a mobile home almost smack dab in the middle of the Sunshine State. It’s not huge, a single wide park model, and some painting and repairs were needed, but it’s comfortable, the people are nice and let’s face it, there’s no snow. I Have to apologize for the picture. It is from the back of our trailer in Florida and I forgot to crop but it gives you an idea of our nice little space.

We decided to leave our townhouse too. We sold our home a few years ago and were renting so we thought why put out that much money when we won’t be there five months out of twelve. So we left at the end of our lease and bought a trailer in a small park situated on the shore of Lake Ontario. Our children and grandchildren live about an hour away so the choice was easy.

But I have to tell you, all these lifestyle changes were a real shock to the system. We moved a lot of our “stuff” to Florida when we went there and the rest we put into a rather large storage unit. We also donated some belongings, sold some of the furniture, and took some to the dump but we still had a lot left. Hence the need for a storage unit.  My goal this summer is to go through all our belongings again and decide what more we want to take with us to Florida and what we can either sell, give away or trash. One thing that really bothers me is there is no place to hang my pictures right now. I don’t have a big, wonderful art collection but I have a number of prints either given as gifts or purchased just because I really like them. Here at our trailer in Ontario, there isn’t much wall space for hanging things but we do have much more space in Florida, so quite a few pieces will be making the journey with us in November. What do I like, really like, about trailer life? There is so much less space to clean!

Although I am enjoying the quiet and solitude here during the week, I miss seeing my friends and family more often so we are still undecided about staying in a trailer here. I will try it for this year but I am leaning to going back to a rental if we can find one that is reasonably priced.

I have one other issue with being retired, I am not focused enough on what I want to do with all my time. I want to write so I must make time for that. It’s not hard, I have lots of time, but setting aside time for a specific task is difficult for me as my mind wants to go to many different scenarios at once. So to solve that I decided I need to meditate. I used to meditate about a hundred years ago but life and all its busyness got in the way. so now I meditate sporadically. I have vowed to do it on a daily basis. My meditation has led me to a new interest that I’ll tell you all about on these pages as time goes by. Hopefully my blogging again will bring me back to the reality of a calm, organized life.

A Trip to the East Coast


Canada is a vast country, from the east coast to the west it is over 7100 kilometers or 4370 odd miles and that’s not including the area that stretches from the US border to the Arctic Circle and beyond. We Canadians know this and accept that visiting relatives and friends often requires the use of our vacation time and much planning. I remember when my daughter-in-law moved here from Manchester, England, she suggested that she and my son drive east for the weekend to visit his grandparents. She was a little insulted that we laughed so hard until we explained that it would take the whole weekend just to get there never mind having a visit and getting back. Anyway the hubby and I have been taking this trek for forty years now and over the last five years have made it at least twice a year if not more. His mother is ninety, and my stepdad is eighty-two, so we really feel the visits are important to them and to us. We live in Ontario so our trip is over eighteen hundred kilometers just to visit Dartmouth where my stepdad and little sister live and another four hundred north to see his mother in Cape Breton.

We usually plan to get on the road by seven am, and generally get going around nine. We take our suitcases in which we have to pack a variety of clothing, from cool weather gear to shorts and tees. Also the laptop, an assortment of ‘just in case’ tools, cold drinks and water, and of course our travel candy. So all packed up and we set off across eastern Ontario. In previous blogs I’ve detailed the gently rolling landscape and beautiful trees in Ontario and after about two hundred kilometers a traveller would start to see some shale rock as well as sandstone and granite. We take the TransCanada highway that goes from St John’s, Newfoundland to Victoria, British Columbia.  You can take a more scenic route along Lake Ontario but we prefer the faster highway for this trip. After about four hours it’s time to stop, stretch the legs and fill up the tank and then we enter Quebec. After a relatively short time the landscape flattens out and we head toward the city of Montreal which is on an island in the St. Lawrence river. We no longer go through Montreal but take a bypass but every tourist should make a point of going into the city proper, see the European style architecture and enjoy the very cosmopolitan feel of the city. There are of course, historical areas as well as newer parts to the vibrant city that are well worth the visit. Then the drive continues in a north east direction. Again the landscape is notable because it becomes rocky. I love rocks too and this is part of a geological formation which we call the Canadian Shield. The Shield is almost four billion years old and there were the high peaked mountains like we see on the west coast, but millions of years of erosion and the glacial retreat have left rounded mountains that seem to pop up from nowhere. Our route takes in the south side of the St Lawrence as we follow the TransCanada to New Brunswick. We get through Quebec, stopping for coffee and restroom breaks where I can practice my very rudimentary french and the local servers practice their much better english language skills. Living in a bilingual country doesn’t make a person bilingual but I do try.

Our next stop is the City of Edmunston in New Brunswick and supper at the local Pizza Delight. After driving for nine hours, this is a most welcome stop. Supper is spaghetti and meat balls for the hubby and seafood linguine or alfredo for me. Scallops, crabmeat and real lobster equals yummy! And they have a grill your own bread bar where you grill bread over a charcoal pit and butter it with plain or one of a variety of flavoured butter. After that we drive for one more hour and stop over in Woodstock. No not the famous Woodstock from the 60’s but a pretty good place anyway.


As I have previously mentioned this part of Canada is very well treed (forestry is a big part of their economy) and one of my grandsons, when he was five asked his Dad why there were so many trees. The response? So we can send oxygen to the rest of Canada. By travelling along the TransCanada we avoid the villages, towns, and cities but we also miss the scenic routes and we said that the next time we travel down, we are going to take in some of the more scenic areas, as we haven’t been through those areas for a number of years. New Brunswick has five specific routes that take in different parts of the province.

I’m just going to tell you now what these scenic routes entail. There is the River Valley Scenic Route. I call it the Fiddlehead Route because the signs are green with a white fiddlehead on them. A fiddlehead is a young fern that hasn’t unfurled and is a delicacy in the province, a green that tastes much like spinach. It includes the western part of the province and passes through major potato growing country, the capital city of Fredericton and agricultural land. All through the tourist season, there are many festivals and celebrations to attend and in the winter the River Valley can be travelled by snowmobile.

There is the Fundy Coastal Drive along the Bay of Fundy where you can see the famous tidal bores twice a day and the highest tides in the world. The north shore was home to the Acadians who migrated to Louisiana. This route will take you along the southern shore of New Brunswick through quiet villages, great scenery, plus birding, parks, historic treasures, whale watching, and fossil filled mudflats. Follow the signs depicting a beaver to find this one.

Follow the Starfish signs to the Acadian Coastal drive that will take you from the original Acadian settlement along the Northumberland Strait, past the Confederation Bridge link to Prince Edward Island, all the way to Nova Scotia. Beautiful sandy beaches line the shores and of course the seafood, you just can’t beat fresh caught and cooked seafood.

The Miramichi River Route travels along the river and offers opportunities to go tubing and salmon fishing. World class waterways and magnificent parks line the Appalacian Range Route. It’s popular for biking, canoeing, and hiking. I hope you all have the opportunity to take these travels at some point in time; we have such a beautiful country.

Ice Cream the Enniskillen Way!


 This past weekend, the hubby and I stuck close to home but we did take a jaunt to a small hamlet about twenty minutes northeast of our city. It is a pretty little spot with a population of about 2930. Strangely enough, it was named after the Earl of Enniskillen, Northern Ireland. Though I have searched through Google, I can’t find the relationship (if there is one) between Enniskillen, Ontario and Northern Ireland. It is part of a larger municipality and is primarily an agricultural community.  The area is beautiful with rolling hills much loved by cyclists. The McLaughlin Carriage Company began its life there, you may know it currently as General Motors Canada, as a blacksmith’s shop but shortly after he began building his carriages, McLaughlin moved his business to Oshawa, Ontario to give his business closer access to the railway. On a side note, the creator of Canada Dry Pale Ginger Ale was also a McLaughlin from Enniskillen.

The village is known far and wide, for its general store. Originally built in 1840 as a post office, it evolved into a general store to serve the needs of the community. At one time it was a butcher shop where the farmers would bring their cows, which were butchered on site and kept in a huge meat locker in the basement until the owner needed the meat. The meat locker is still there, used for storage I imagine. Now it is also famous for the huge ice cream cones available in about forty different flavours.


 Which brings me to the reason for our visit. Our daughter-in-law organized an Ice Cream Eating Challenge through her company How To Organize That and our son had entered the challenge. Anyone who can eat the biggest bowl of ice cream gets their name and picture on the store’s Wall of Fame and of course has bragging rights. Those of us who didn’t enter, all bought cones to enjoy while we watched. I purchased one called the Big Baby, the largest two scoop cone I’ve ever seen and though I did eat it all, I quickly realized that supper that night was not an option. The challengers had to eat about a liter and a half of ice cream as fast as possible and with a little plastic spoon! They were given ice water to drink which helped cut down on ‘brain freeze’ and dug in. Unbelievable that the winner finished his bowl in three and a half minutes! Although he had chosen two or three varieties, I don’t think he actually tasted any of it. Me, I think ice cream should be savoured and enjoyed but then I wouldn’t be able to meet that challenge anyway.

Bored? Try Your Local Flea Market

Junk gypsy

I was bored on Sunday. What could I do with my time? I just didn’t feel like doing any writing, crafts or (shudder) housework, I just wasn’t in the mood and I have to be in the mood. So what to do with my poor, bored self? Well I decided to take a few hours at the local flea market. We have one just fifteen minutes away, an easy little day trip. I’ve recently rekindled an interest in antiques and collectibles so the market seemed like a logical place to explore. I haven’t been there for over a year, it lost it’s appeal, but this seemed a good time to revisit and see if anything new had come along or if my interest was piqued by something else. People visit the flea market to find deals or a unique item. The overhead is lower for the vendors so goods, whether new or used should really be cheaper and this savings should be passed on to the customers. It helps if you know your prices and what to expect from a flea market vendor. Make sure the items actually work before you leave the stall, avoid that type of rip off. But usually the vendors are pretty good about making sure something works the way it’s supposed to.

I dragged the hubby out with me, we parked and started out exploring the first building closest to us. It’s called the Junk Gypsy. Aptly named, there is a whole lot of stuff jumbled on tables and shelves. None of it has ever been dusted let alone cleaned. I couldn’t go near the books, I’m sure they were full of silverfish and the musty smell would have followed me home. What a shame to treat books that way. There may have been treasures hidden away but I couldn’t bring myself to dig into any of it.

The next two buildings held antiques and collectibles. These had some good stuff that had been cleaned and cared for. We aren’t in the market to buy but really enjoyed examining the items and talking to the owners. They are always interested in talking abut their wares and have a ton of information. there was a lot of furniture, some old and some newer in the last outdoor space. Most of it was in good shape and reasonably priced. We came across some very unique items to


It was time for a break so we joined the queue at the chip truck for an order of poutine and cold drinks. Poutine is a uniquely Canadian dish made with French fries topped with cheese curds, usually mild white cheddar or mozzarella cheese curds, and lovely brown gravy poured over them. The hot gravy and the hot fries melt the cheese between them. These were made with grated orange cheddar that was a little sharp in flavour, not as good as it should be but tasty in a different way.

Refreshed we entered the main building. There are all sorts of really great booths with a wide variety of goods for sale. Some hand crafted items, fresh deli food and a little fresh baked goods booth where I bought absolutely delicious sunflower seed and light rye bread. The owner threw in a loaf of wonderful seven grain bread too because it was getting late and he didn’t want to have to throw anything out. He tempted us with samples of truly wonderful streudel but we were able to avoid the temptation to buy one. Next time though I’ll be getting a blueberry streudel and damn the calories! Another booth I loved was the one that sells rocks. I love rocks and had a big collection of rocks and fossils when I was a child. It sounds odd to have a booth devoted to the sale of rocks but these are mostly crystals and raw stones like amethyst and agate. He gives out printed sheets describing each stone, its physical, healing and mystical properties. I found it so interesting that I may go back, purchase a few stones and begin blogging about their properties.


Finally we visited with a friend who has a booth. He is a realtor and uses the booth to promote that part of his business, but he also has a sideline of metal detector sales and is very knowledgeable. He also sells little odds and ends at prices as low as five cents. Back outside, we strolled around tables filled with locally grown fruit and vegetables, homemade jams and honey. We saved that one til the end so we didn’t have to drag our veggies through the rest of the market. You just can’t beat locally grown!

So on a boring Sunday afternoon, might I suggest a visit to your local flea market and a stroll through the booths. It’s a great little daytrip even if it’s only fifteen minutes from home.