Thursday, June 14, 2012

A Change Could Do You Good

If you have been to my web site ( then you know I like cool and fun images of frogs.  In fact, I really LOVE the foggy above!  A frog in a suit doing yoga…it just make me smile.  But behind the festive frog images is a very serious business.  The business of change.  Mr. Froggy goes from a tadpole who swims in the water to a frog who hops on land.  That is a major metamorphism and I just bet it is a tad (pun intended) bit painful.  That’s why I like the image of the frog.  The change process may be painful but necessary in order for the tadpole to live it’s designed purpose.

Change usually includes some sort of transformation.  It can be a big or small transformation.  It can be painful but necessary.  Change is hard.  Don’t believe me"?  Ok, for the next week brush your teeth with your non-dominant hand.  Take a moment and scan your thoughts about how you would feel using the other hand.  I just bet your mind is already questioning why you would want to do this.  During the week count how many times you have to remind yourself to brush your teeth with the other hand.  Bushing your teeth with your non-dominant hand will be uncomfortable.  Why?  Because we are creatures of habit.  Our habits have served us in the past so why change now?  Because sometimes we NEED to change.  Especially non-serving habits like smoking, over eating, passive aggressive behavior, not exercising, not living to your potential, letting go of a unhealthily relationship, not feeling our Joy and the list goes on….

All change starts in the brain.  If you think it then you can do it.  One of the biggest changes in my life was quitting smoking.  I did not want to quit smoking because I knew it would be painful.  And oh boy was I right.  My whole body went numb for a month as it went through detox.  I also had to change my breathing, what to do with my hands, when I drank coffee, my friends, etc….  But the biggest change was my thoughts.  The minute I believed that I could be a joyful non-smoker the change came and eight years later as the Healing Play Coach I help others quit smoking.  Yep, you can puff away as long as you keep your play dates and do your Affirmation Homework ;)  The metamorphism will come out to play.

So, what do you need to change?  What change would you like to see in your life?  Job?  Relationship?  Home?  Health?  The first step is to try out this thought:  I feel the joy of __________________. 

Fill in the blank with:
Being a Non-Smoker
Eating Healthy
Going back to School
Finding a New Partner
Planting a Flower Garden
Washing Dishes
You get the idea.  Oh, and when you think your new “I feel the joy” thought you may feel ridicules, weird, rebellious or uncomfortable.  That is how you know you are on the right track.

Play Well!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Never Too Old To Play


The US Administration on Aging has declared May as older American's month.  YEA!  And the theme for this year is that You are Never too old to PLAY.  I think they confiscated the play ideas from my web site.  Now, I am not exactly sure what constitutes an older American.  When I was a kid it was easy to identify an old person.  Grandma and Grandpa were old.  But at 47 the identification of old becomes more elusive.  My grandparents were grandparents at 47.  My mother-in-law Dale is 75 and I most certainly would not define her as old.  The woman just got back from New York and is headed to China.  I literally get tired thinking about her daily itinerary.

The truth is as we age most of us do stop playing.  We get caught up into the daily grin of life as we worry about the kids, our spouse, money, job security, mortgage payments and our parents.  As a society we don’t start playing again until we retire.  I have a really good friend, Rob who is planning wonderful adventures for when he retires.  His list includes planting a bigger garden in his back yard, putting hardwood floors in the rest of his home, spending time with his granddaughter, drinking beer and fishing.  For Rob all of these activities constitutes play.  To me this is a sad way to live because he can do all of those things NOW.  Stop talking and start doing!  It can most certainly be done with small steps.  For example this spring expand your garden by one row.  In the summer when the days are longer re-do the floors in one room.  Give the grandbaby a hammer and let her help! Drink beer while planting that extra row in the garden.  Drunk gardening…you just don’t know what you might plant!  Take the whole family fishing.  Why we put off things that bring us joy I can not understand. 

For those of you who thinks that you are too old to play that is just hog wash.  I am not sure what hog wash is but Poppy constantly talked about it.  Old is a state of mind.  Age literally starts with your thoughts not your body.  So, regardless of age let’s support the Administration on Aging and PLAY!  Not just in May but every month of the year.  As Juju says “God made us so that we might know joy” and Play and Joy are kissing cousins.

Play Well!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Take Your Art x2 per Week


I know a thing or two about illness and disease.  Ok, I probably know more than a thing or two…..arthritis, menopause, heart attack survivor, allergies, depression, tennis elbow, Plantar fasciitis and migraines.  My doctor visits are mixed with amazement, caution and medication adjustments.  My medical charts are tattered and fat.

The truth is that for the most part I am really a healthy individual.  I run a thriving coaching business, I develop on-line classes for elders, I am a spouse and a mother, magical artist  and Captain of my Neighborhood watch.  So, what’s my secret?  Well here it goes…

Medical doctors are REALLY good at fixing health problems.  I have three inches of mesh stints in my right artery and I am grateful for every inch.  I have an array of medication.  I do take my heart meds and depression meds everyday.  My pain meds I take only when needed.  I LOVE fruits and veggies!  I garden like Rambo.  I enjoy my family.  But what makes me feel really, really jazzed is brand new art brushes, paint, clay, glue, paper, canvas, stickers, pens, pencils and journals.  I CREATE!  I fire up the aromatherapy, put on classical music or classic rock and grab a clean white canvas.  The creative process is like prayer to me.  It helps me reach deep down into the depths of my soul and bring out something I never knew I had.  For me it is a spiritual journey and what I call healing play.

The American Heart Association just release a cover story, Artful Recovery.  The story highlights artist that have used creativity as part of their healing process.  Before you jot on over and read the story please remember that the healing creativity is not about the finished product but the process.  You do not have to be an artist to enjoy the magic of creativity….just open.  When I was released from the hospital after the heart attack I created a journal of stick figures.  I was so angry about what happened to me all I could do was use colored pencils in a notebook.  That was all I needed to do.  The healing process took hold of my soul.

So, along with your medication go ahead and add in Art x2 per Week and let your journey into wellness begin!  If you would like to know more about Healing Play pop on over and visit my web site at

Play Well!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The Rituals of Play


As a society we have all kinds of celebrations and rituals associated with significant events.  The Baby Shower qualifies as such an event.  Women gather to celebrate motherhood and the cycle of life by eating, playing games an showering the mother to be with gifts. 
It had been a long time since I had been to a baby shower.  Alyce is my BFF that lives across the street and her first grandbaby will be here April 7th.  I picked that date because I am intuitive and I just know these things.  Anyway, three months ago Alyce, Julie, Whit and myself started planning this ancient ritual.  It has been years since I have attended a baby shower let alone helped plan one.

Step One:  Select a theme.  Sounds easy uh?  Tis not an easy task because of all the options.  After  6 cups of coffee and 8 cookies Alyce finally decided on “farm animals”.

Step Two:  Purchase invitations and invite your guest.  Well, it seems we picked a theme that is “out”.  If we had picked safari animals we would have been in like flint.  Cows, horses, pigs and chickens were no where to be found.  Because I am “the creative one” we decided we could design and make our own invitations.  Through laugher, cookies and coffee we created one hell of a baby shower invitation.

Step Three:  Design a diaper cake.  I had never seen one of these contraptions.  But Alyce had a picture so how hard could it be?  Imagine 305 diapers, 6 stuffed animals, a barn yard, baby toys, cookies, ribbon, rubber bands and several cups of coffee all piled on my dinning room table.  Yea, it was hysterical.  

Step Four:  Plan the menu.  We had good old fashion farm food.  Pulled Pork sliders, potato salad, slaw, pigs in a blanket, pea salad, fruit, cup cakes, cookies, brownies and candy. 

Step Five:  Set it all up and hope people show up.  Well, everyone did show up.  25 women laughed, ate, played, socialized and showered the mother to be and the baby with lots of baby loot.

The ritual of a baby shower is a time of joy, love and hope.  But it was the gift of friendship, laughter, creativity and coffee that was the quinn essential of healing play.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Girl Scouts, Empowerment and Healing Play

It is that time of the year again! Little boxes of pure joy are being peddled by wee girls in brown and green uniforms. Yuuuuup! It is Girl Scout cookie season. Thin mint is my favorite. No wait tagalongs....thanks-a-alot.....ok, I admit I like them ALL!

The Mission of the Girl Scout organization is: In Girl Scouts, girls discover the fun, friendship, and power of girls together. Through a myriad of enriching experiences, such as extraordinary field trips, sports skill-building clinics, community service projects, cultural exchanges, and environmental stewardships, girls grow courageous and strong. Girl Scouting helps girls develop their full individual potential; relate to others with increasing understanding, skill, and respect; develop values to guide their actions and provide the foundation for sound decision-making; and contribute to the improvement of society through their abilities, leadership skills, and cooperation with others.

So, if you see a girl scout peddling those cookies buy a box! Support the empowerment of girls and young women. THEN, find a private place and eat the whole damn box. Don't worry about sugar and calories. It's only once a year so throw out the rules and enjoy those delightful round disk of pure pleasure. Yes, healing play includes cookies. Now go find a Girl Scout troup and get busy.