As the ‘longest’ day of the year, the Summer Solstice is a time of abundant sunlight and warmth, offering a perfect opportunity for reflection and rejuvenation. This annual event, occurring this year on June 20th in the Northern hemisphere, symbolizes not only a peak in daylight but also a peak in our own personal energies and potential.

Strength of the Summer Solstice

The Summer Solstice has been celebrated for centuries across various cultures, marking a time of fertility, growth, and renewal. It is a day when the sun reaches its highest point in the sky, casting the longest shadows and reminding us of the power and vitality of light. This day invites us to soak in the solar energy, embrace the warmth, and ignite our inner fire to pursue passions and goals.

Here are some ways to maximize your experience during the Summer Solstice:

  1. Reconnect with Nature: Spend time outdoors, whether it is hiking, gardening, or simply enjoying a picnic in the park. Nature has a way of grounding us and providing a fresh perspective on life.
  2. Engage in Creative Pursuits: Use the extra daylight to explore creative hobbies such as painting, writing, or playing music. Creativity can be a powerful outlet for expressing your innermost thoughts and feelings.
  3. Practice Mindfulness and Gratitude: Take a moment to reflect on what you are grateful for. Mindfulness practices like meditation or yoga can help you stay present and appreciate the beauty of the moment.
  4. Connect with Loved Ones: Strengthen relationships by spending quality time with family and friends. Host a solstice gathering or a bonfire to celebrate the day together.
  5. Pursue Personal Goals: Reignite your passion for personal projects or set new goals. The solstice is an excellent time to tap into your ambitions and take actionable steps towards achieving them.

For your consideration:

The Summer Solstice is more than a seasonal event; it is a powerful reminder of the light and potential within us. By embracing this time to reconnect with nature, pursue passions, and reflect on your journey, you can bask in the light that burns from above and from within your spirit. I invite you to harness the strength of this potent time to live life to the fullest as you make an inventory and assessment at this energetically highest peak of the year.

Here’s how you can make the most of this reflective period:

  • Review Your Aspirations: Reflect on the aspirations you set at the beginning of the year. What have you accomplished? What needs more attention? Adjust your plans as necessary to stay on track.
  • Evaluate Your Well-being: Consider your physical, emotional, and mental health. Are you taking care of yourself? Identify areas where you might need to focus more energy, such as exercise, diet, or mental health practices.
  • Reflect on What You have Learned: Celebrate your progress, and acknowledge the lessons you’ve learned. Understanding what worked well and what did not can guide you in making better decisions moving forward.
  • Set New Intentions: The halfway point of the year is a great time to set new intentions. What do you want to achieve in the coming months? Write down your intentions and make a plan to pursue them.
  • Recenter Yourself: Strive for a centered life. Ensure that your personal, professional, and social aspects are harmoniously aligned. This fosters overall well-being and sustained success.

Okay, your turn:

What will you be doing this upcoming Solstice? I’ll be noticing the light as it brightens my steps that carry me through the wilderness.

I invite you to share your observations, feelings, and experiences by leaving a Reply in the Comments section, below. Soul-to-soul!

Amidst this sultry realm, with nature at its prime

A bonfire blazes tall, a beacon in the night

Its crackling flames like whispers

with wisdom to uncoil

Inviting us to gather ’round and to let our spirits sail

The bonfire’s glow, a mesmerizing sight to behold

It paints the evening sky with dancing hints of rubies and of gold

Drawn in like moths, we form a circle tight

Sharing laughter and our stories

igniting pure delight.

As the embers crackle and leap

the warmth from them felt upon our skin

We find solace in their flickers, a respite from the din.

For in this fiery haven, worries gently fade away

Replaced by joy and camaraderie, where memories form and play

With friends and loved ones by our side

we find a sense of bliss,

A soft breeze with hints of revealing secrets

with every nuzzle and quiet kiss

We bask in summer’s glory, as the stars adorn the sky

And in this shared existence, our souls are lifted high.

As the night seeks out its slumber, and embers fade to gray

We take comfort in the new memories, caught within the bright display.

For in our hearts, a spark will forever reside

Always ready to inspire

A reminder of that summer’s eve

when life met all of our desires

Okay, your turn:

Whether it be memories of summer camp, or summer school, or staying up late…what does the heat of the summer time invoke in you?

I invite you to share your observations, feelings, and experiences by leaving a Reply in the Comments section, below. Soul-to-soul!

© 2023 Lori A. Noonan. All Rights Reserved.

Time change


Time marches on


And waits

for no one


Or, does it?


Daylight Saving Time


Are we saving daylight

or saving time





What difference does it make

if at all


Who does the changing


We change our time pieces


Do we change ourselves

or our environment


Or simply do we “wind” ahead

or “back” an hour

depending on our geographic location


and the prescribed moment twice a year

on a Sunday

at 2 am


Has anyone told our bodies about this?


Why do the dog and the cat and the hamster and the guinea pig and the goldfish

not seem to notice?


Is it because they don’t wear watches

or look at the clock



For your consideration:

What if the entire world took a collective, heartfelt, time out during these time changes? For one hour, twice a year?  Let’s take time changes into our own control, and allow ourselves 6o minutes to hear the messages of our soul.  I mean this as a deliberate practice, and not as an esoteric concept.

For me, the past several years, it’s been a reset so to speak for my nervous system – my physical body system, and my inner knowing – my spiritual body.

Back before my more recent devotional and deep dives into the spiritual realm, I hosted in my home “clock parties,” where a large group of my friends and I would toast to the time change, eat clock-shaped frosted sugar cookies, and dance the night away the Saturday before the time change. So, there’s that option, too.  Pick your poison, erm, tradition.

Okay, your turn:

Making the switch to and from Daylight Saving Time (by the way, it’s Saving, without an “s” at the end, in case you’re wondering…as was I…the things I ponder!) – Does making the switch by one hour twice a year impact you?  If so, in what ways do you notice it?  Sleeping patterns disrupted?  Stomach growling at seemingly weird hours?  Are you happy about it?  Frustrated?  Maybe for you it’s not a big deal either way?

I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, and experiences by leaving a Reply in the Comments section, below. Soul-to-soul!

© 2021 Lori A. Noonan. All Rights Reserved.


All that is holy

With this season of holy nights and holy lights illuminating the darkness and lighting our path, we await each new dawn. We emerge into the day’s light, having risen from our moments of respite and retreat.  I write this symbolically and yet from the physical realm, too.  The deeper the well, the deeper the water; the deeper the reach down fully into the source.

At this, the final new moon of 2019 and among the few remaining nights and days of the 2010s, we are each about to step across a threshold from one decade into the next.  It’s a time of high energy and high holiness.

All are sacred

All are holy

Are we wholly holy?


Does our wholly holiness show up wholly?

Not always


We focus on the season

We can focus on a lifetime

Well spent

Well enjoyed

Well served

Well shared

Deep from within

our own well


Our whole selves…














For your consideration:

As we leave behind 2019 and cross into 2020, I wonder this: What’s on the horizon?

What is it that you hold most high? Most holy? Will you express it? Wholly?

I invite you to set a timer for 11 minutes, take three long deep breaths, close your eyes and allow an image, a word, a phrase, a feeling of what the next decade will represent for you and how you will move through this new decade as we approach that door, our front foot resting serenely and confidently upon the threshold.

Okay, your turn:

When you hear, read, or contemplate the word “holy,” what comes up for you? Is it tied to a particular holy-day, or a certain season?  It is something to which you aspire? Do you bring it into your interactions at work or other communities, with your family, with your friends?

I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, and experiences by leaving a Reply in the Comments section, below. Soul-to-soul!

© 2019 Lori A. Noonan. All Rights Reserved.

Thankful for the bounty and all the riches

Stemming from the Latin bonitas, meaning “good,” bounty refers to all the goodness that one harvests. This week is an ideal time to consider the bountiful riches in our lives.  Take a moment to reflect on the abundance all around. There’s richness in all the planet provides, naturally.  There’s richness in personal connections, and love. There’s richness in faith, spirit, and confidence in the greater good, and in everlasting beauty. Even in those moments when we may feel less than bountiful, consider the pearl that emerges honed, smooth, and polished by enduring the repeated friction against it.

Let us give thanks for all that mother gaia provides us, and all that sustains us.  Let us give thanks for our daily practices AND our daily bread. Let us give thanks for each other, and our resolve to see the light shine against every darkness.

And, let us trust that more is yet to come. That’s faith: Faith in the unseen. Faith in the seeds planted below ground that they will reach the surface. Faith in the sun and the moon rising and setting and rising again. Faith in yourself rising, experiencing setbacks, and rising again.

For your consideration:

In what ways have you incorporated thankfulness in your life?

I still send in the mail handwritten Thank You cards, in business and personally. I suppose they stand out even more in this digital age. I hope so. I like envisioning that, even if but for a brief moment, the recipient stops to read the handwritten message and knows that I send along kindness and my gratefulness to them.

So whether it’s this Thursday, or at some other time during the next few weeks, I invite you to:

Say grace

Offer grace

Receive grace

Be grace.

Be heartfelt

Be genuine

Be sincere

Be thankful

Be true.

Count your blessings.

Make them count.


Okay, your turn:

What traditions, if any, resonate most with you during this time of year?  Is giving thanks a regular part of your daily life, or do you tend to focus on it only on certain occasions?

I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, and experiences by leaving a Reply in the Comments section, below. Soul-to-soul!

© 2019 Lori A. Noonan. All Rights Reserved.

There’s sage and then there’s sage !

Sage, as we know, is a type of herb. The sage plant has been used by a number of cultures for thousands of years.  It has been used in Chinese medicine.  It has been used by Native Americans in various ceremonies and for medicinal purposes. Some have even suggested that it leads to immortality!

In China, sage tea has been called the “thinker’s tea.” Along with its anti-inflammatory properties, it has been known to help improve memory and overall brain function.  Perhaps that is why the word “sage” also is used to describe a person who is wise.  It can also be used as an adjective (as in “sage advice”).

The title of this article is a deliberate play on words.  Sages and ages. They both connote a harkening back to ancient times as well as serve as a current example of ancient traditions put to good use in the so-called modern age.  Has there been a resurgence, or have these practices been put to good use all along?  Are we perhaps simply more aware of them now, due to the internet, globalization, and social media?

Sage has even become a somewhat trendy baby name, at least in the United States.  I wonder if it’s part of the ‘Apple’ craze?  (Referring to the celebrity’s baby’s name, not the computer company.)

We all remember being asked the question when we were young: What do you want to be when you grow up?  Me:  a philosopher.  I didn’t hear anyone around me saying that they wanted to be that.  It wasn’t exactly listed anywhere as a possible career track.  That didn’t matter to me.  If it was needed, and served a purpose, why couldn’t it be an occupation?

I wasn’t even exactly sure what all a job as a philosopher would entail. I knew in my heart, though, that it was a role that would be important and one that would be of service to others.  In my imagination, philosophers were the wisest people in their communities.  And, as such, they had a responsibility to answer seekers’ questions and provide helpful suggestions, recommendations, and solutions.

Sometimes we picture “wise ones” sitting on a mountain top, or living in caves in the Himalayas.  In my mind’s eye, I pictured them more along the lines of a wise man or wise woman in Ancient Greece sitting quietly in a town square, as the local villagers would stop by whenever they were seeking an answer to an inquiry or when wrestling with a concern that was weighing heavily on their soul, or when struggling with a conflict they couldn’t quite resolve.

I pictured philosophers dispensing wisdom not unlike a modern day pharmacist dispensing medicine.  And, I did truly envision “philosopher” as an actual vocation, and a paid position, for sure.  I even had a specific annual salary in mind.  I thought that a philosopher should make $300,000 a year.  Here was my reasoning:  At the time, the President of the United States’ annual salary was set at $200,000. Knowing that, accordingly, I figured that philosophers should be paid at least 50% more than the President, as they would be at least that much more wise and valuable to the country and citizenry!  Apparently, I really had put a lot of thought into this (grin).

While Philosopher or Sage may not be a job title, certainly there are modern day professions where others seek their guidance and advice.   Lawyers fall into that category (hence, the term “counselor at law”).  As with some other professions, within law, there are rules of professional responsibility.  It is part of the licensing process, and continuing legal education requirements as well.  And, as covered in this week’s Six-Minute Saturdays episode, many lawyers including myself were drawn to the law as a career because of a deep desire to be of service.

Admittedly, not all legal advice is the sagest or the wisest. I would suggest, though, that the profession is at least designed to serve that purpose, and with that intention.  And, ultimately, the client retains control over whether to heed that advice, ignore it, or even to seek additional opinions.

For your consideration:

So, with that in mind then, allow me to pose this question: Upon whom, ultimately, do we need to rely, for the sagest advice of all?

Are we not, each of us, deep down, our own best philosopher?  We simply need to access that inner wise sage.  That’s why meditation is important.  That’s why getting quiet and still is wise. By listening to our own inner guidance and messages, we each hold the power and divinity to reach the most appropriate conclusions and answers for ourselves.  And, that is valuable beyond compare.

Okay, your turn:

What’s been the sagest advice that you’ve ever received?  What’s the sagest advice that you’ve ever given? What’s the best advice that your inner-sage has revealed to you?  What made it so?  Did you act on it?

I invite you to SHARE your thoughts, feelings, and experiences by leaving a Reply in the Comments section, below. Soul-to-soul!

© 2018 Lori A. Noonan. All Rights Reserved.

Close on the heels of the Olympic Games, I recently found myself contemplating excellence and what that means in today’s world. I discovered, as it turns out, that along with respect and friendship, excellence is one of the Olympics’ three core values, as set forth by the International Olympic Committee. Excellence is an important element of what many consider to be inherent in the athletes who perform “at that level.”

In this edition of Soul Notes, let’s hold in our hearts this notion of excellence.  What, if any, purpose does it serve?  Is it a worthy goal, an end state?  Or, is it rather a state of being?  Is it something to be embodied, rather than pursued?  Does it matter?  Does embracing excellence (or, its opposite – not embracing it) come with a price?   What does it cost, in terms of our serenity, health, or overall well being?  What impacts result?


So often we hear the phrase “in the pursuit of excellence.”  Is it, however, all about the pursuit?  I’d like to challenge each of us to replace that with:  embracing excellence.  Unlike the pursuit of something, embracing it sounds and is more encompassing, more in the moment, more present, more “now.”  Pursuing sounds as if it’s a constant state of grasping for something that’s still out in front of you, almost as if it is something that remains ever oh so slightly beyond your reach.  It seems unattainable.

For those on a spiritual path, I would venture to say that it is the embracing of, rather than the pursuing of excellence, that rings true.  It’s a setting of an intention that each of us will embody a way of life, of living, that emerges from our highest state of being.  It is soul centered, soul activated, soul sustaining.  Accordingly, it’s something that, once accessed, can and may be cultivated and developed.

During this season of Northern hemisphere harvesting, it’s a good time to reflect on what each of us has already cultivated with regard to excellence in our lives.  Take a few moments to inventory your relationships, work endeavors, wealth signs, health indicators, and the like.  Remember, as an excellence “embracer,” you’re simply staying on the path of excellence, nurturing and cultivating it throughout your journey.  Survey your life’s stock.  Appreciate and celebrate all the fruits of your excellence to date!  For those areas that are still germinating and not quite yet ‘in full bloom’ for you, continue to foster their continued growth, regeneration, and renewal.


Excellence is not an innate gene or trait.  Not unlike integrity, or loyalty, excellence is a quality.  It’s a commitment.  Embracing it is a choice each of us can make — today, and every day.

Why does embracing excellence matter?  I’d say it matters for many of the same reasons we enjoy watching the Olympics!  It brings out the best in ourselves, and in others.  It motivates. It inspires.  It raises us, and others, up.

“Excellence encourages one about life generally; it shows the spiritual wealth of the world.” –George Eliot

Yes, in the Olympics there are medal counts and world records, and pride amongst nations.  What we experience when witnessing the various Olympic events, however, runs deeper than that. 

A few brief weeks or even days after the Olympics have ended, many of us do not even remember who placed in what order, and in which particular event.  Sure, there are those few standouts, who become household names, who garner multimillion endorsement deals, and who receive the ongoing, related spotlight and ‘stardom’.   Or, perhaps a few of the athletes are our personal favorites.  We will remember those names.

What we tend to remember most, however, are the MOMENTS.  The moments of excellence personified.  Individual moments.  Team moments.  Moments frozen in time. We remember the stories of triumphs, and personal “overcomings.” These are what are emblazened on, and held snugly, in our hearts.

For what end?

Some say excellence means something along the lines of “putting out a high quality product.”  This begs the question, of course, of where to draw the line.  It discards and leaves behind, without consideration, the notion that excellence is an admirable quality in and of itself.  It remains of value – with and without attaining a specific, predetermined outcome.  It’s more fluid than that.  Excellence in this sense is more in the shape of a circle than in a straight line.

Let’s consider the fourth place finishers at the Olympics, for example.  Do they embody excellence any “less” than those who get to stand on the podium as the gold, silver, or bronze medalists?

There are inherent benefits of embracing excellence, within ourselves and in appreciating it when we see it in others.  It FEELS GOOD to excel!  It feels good to watch others excel!  It’s PASSION in MOTION!

For your consideration:

As we close, I leave you with these words, from Nobel laureate, Pearl S. Buck:

“The secret of joy in work is contained in one word – excellence. To know how to do something well is to enjoy it.

Okay, your turn:

What does excellence mean to you? Is it worth pursuing?  Better yet, is it worth embracing in our daily lives? If so, in what way or ways?

I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, and experiences in the Comments section, below. Soul-to-soul!

© 2016 Lori A. Noonan. All Rights Reserved.

My recent initiation

Since JT (Justin Timberlake) has already brought sexy back, I’m bringing “sistren” back! According to the Oxford dictionary, both brethren and sistren shared common parlance until the 1600s, when the word brethren started to take over.  I say there’s plenty of room for both!

I joined a new (for me) sacred sisterhood this weekend. After nearly a year of study, on September 26, I, along with my sistren apprentices, received my formal initiation as a “Keeper of the Water” (Keeper).

As with many other types of initiations, we each took solemn vows and made sacred commitments. As our elder has so beautifully taught us, we have each now entered into a love-centered contract with the Divine.

And, it certainly doesn’t end there. With this initiation, it has truly just begun. And, will begin again. It’s creation. And, it’s rebirth. We are neither the first, nor the last of the Keepers. What prevails is the devotion to creating sacred space for, and holding, compassion and unconditional love. Love for ourselves, for each other, for Mother Earth, for Grandmother Moon, and for the grandmothers and angels who watch over us all.

We each have our own medicine to bring into our circles and in how we show up in our lives. It is ours to bring forward; ours to share. There is much healing to be done.

Initiations of Various Types

Initiations vary, of course, in terms of their specifics.   All initiations, though, tend to exact a certain demonstrated level of commitment and a meeting of specified requirements. And, what rings true throughout, is the sanctity of the occasion.

Some examples:

There is being knighted. There is priest hood, and priestess hood. Often handed down through the generations, there is the becoming a “keeper” of a sacred tradition, rite, or ritual.

There are sororities and fraternities. And there are fraternal and sororal orders.

While pursuing my undergraduate degree at the University of California, Berkeley, I was initiated into a leadership society known as The Order of the Golden Bear. Each initiate was nominated and then inducted at a formal ceremony.   Referred to as “Fellows” once initiated, members are to carry forth the Order’s charter and pledge to uphold the group’s mission and purpose.

Also while in college, I participated in the Catholic Church’s RCIA (Rite for Christian Initiation of Adults), whereby after a year of devotion and study, I joined the other catechumens to be initiated into the Church during a several hour ceremony at the Easter Vigil.  Once initiated, we began our year-long role as a Neophyte, and with that accepted and carried out our new duties. Our first act of service began that very evening, when we anointed each of the congregants with holy oil.


With my Keeper initiation and the others, I have experienced a sense of fellowship. My “fellow” (sistren!) Keepers and I have each fulfilled the specific requirements, and at the same time all underwent a shared experience as we proceeded though our apprenticeship as a group. Along with a certain comaraderie, we more deeply formed a spiritual bond, a sacred sisterhood. It became clear that in our new role, we were to be continuing a centuries’ long tradition which at one point had gone dormant, and has since been honorably and solemnly resurrected by our elder, our teacher.

May I get a witness

As with Ceremony, with Initiation comes an element of being witnessed. Other members of your initiate class join you as you receive your initiation. They observe your initiation and hold sacred space and compassion for you and what you’re accepting. Among other things, their witnessing serves as an acknowledgement of where you’ve been, and more importantly, where you are headed, as you step up into this next role.

It is in effect a rite of passage. I’ll leave the topic of rites of passage for further exploration perhaps at another time. For now, I invite you to allow the idea and experience of “being initiated” to resonate with you.

As a newly ordained Keeper of the Water, what it means for me is this:

I accept this new role and its responsibilities with reverence, dedication, and devotion. I vow to continue to practice all that I’ve learned, and to do my best to honor the traditions of the grandmothers, and of the sacred feminine.

When I stumble, I promise to stand up. And, to carry on. And, to continue to hold. Again. And again.

For your consideration:

For you, what does it mean to be initiated?

Okay, your turn:

Have you or a loved one ever been initiated?   If so, in what way did you or they perform certain duties or functions? What would you like others to know about that experience? Is there a role you’d like to step into, at this point in your life? If so, what would that be, and what is drawing you towards that next level, experience, or role?

I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, and experiences in the Comments section, below. Soul-to-soul!

© 2015 Lori A. Noonan. All Rights Reserved.

Seasons change

As we approach the time of “equal days and equal nights” and in the Northern hemisphere while we are transitioning from Summer into Autumn, let’s take a moment to reflect on the changing of the seasons. During Fall (Autumn) trees slow their growth, reduce their production of chlorophyll, and transform their leaves. There’s a natural cycle, a natural sequence. In the insect world, too, there’s a life cycle that takes its course in alignment with the changing of the seasons. It’s ongoing. And, it’s universal.



There’s a shape to the year.

As with the animals and the plants, it applies to us, too, of course.

We start off each year in Winter, and come back around the circle, lapping around the seasons, with a return back into Winter, and the start of another year.  You may also think of the seasons in terms of quarters, each season representing one-fourth of the year.  (See kids, it IS helpful to know at least a little math!)

So, for this year, we’re three-quarters’ of the way in! As with a harvest, it’s a good time to reflect and “take stock.” It’s also a good time to envision what you desire to continue or to have more fully flourish, for the remainder of the year. We’re heading into and leaning into the home stretch!




From one to the next

A progressing

A stepping back


A returning

Begin again

Yields of the fields

From within your own life, which of the “the fruits of your labor” from the past few months have come forward? Autumn’s harvest time is an ideal space from which to appreciate and partake in the blessings that abound, and that BELONG to YOU! Correspondingly, take a moment to reflect and decide — which ones would you like to let go, to release — to allow to die out, as they no longer serve you at this moment in time?

Take stock

As with a shepherd’s flock or a farmer’s field, this time of year, I invite you to take an inventory – an accounting, of your own life.   From where you started your year, what desires have you been nurturing, watering, and tending to? Where have you directed your devotion and care? Which desires have you perhaps been neglecting?

Which of your “crops” did well, and really flourished? Were there some that produced abundant fruit? In contrast, which ones did not fare so well? Was there an adverse change in conditions along the way? Were there unforeseen storms that may have wreaked havoc with your field? If so, how did you respond? Going forward, are there adjustments you can can and would like to make?

For me, my year as you may recall started with bringing into fruition and to you, the first installment of Soul Notes, and this blog. I’ve been fulfilling my heart’s desire to bring this to you on or near the New Moon and Full Moon each moon cycle since January. I consider it an honor and a privilege to share these posts with you, and to bring forward my version of some of the wise teachings I’ve received from my mentors and from other influences I’ve sought out and benefited from during my spiritual journey.

Another of my heart’s desires this year has been to step into my role as a ceremonialist. Holding sacred space and conducting in-person women’s circles in and near my home, along with conducting Full Moon “Ceremonies in the Park” allows me to bring this desire out into the physical realm. During this time of ever-evolving technology, even with all its benefits, I also relish the sublime opportunity to connect person-to-person and to be in contact with the Earth and the natural world!

This year, I also held a Summer Solstice ceremony and celebration at my home. During that time, at the “mid-year mark,” we each set into motion our intentions and sacred commitments for the second half of the year. Three months later, I have revisited those intentions. I invite you to do so, too.

Growth Cycles








Seasons of the year ~ seasons of your life

As with the seasons of the year, it’s helpful periodically to take stock of your lifetime journey as well. Reflect. Evaluate. Surmise. Where are you in the seasons of your life? Are you ready to embark on a new chapter?

Allow your desires really, truly, FULLY to express themselves. If you’re feeling the inclination, the yearning, the pull to explore some “next steps” in this season of your life, in honor of your true desires, I wholeheartedly support you! Explore. Set out on the grand adventure. Dare to desire, and desire some more. Along the way, seek out a trusted guide. TURN ON YOUR SOUL. It’s time for a BIG let-go and let’s GO!

For your consideration:

Did you make intentions at the beginning of the year? Or, at the mid-year mark? (Or, even if perhaps you didn’t, I encourage you to take time to set some in motion now.)

As you survey your year, what do you notice? What has unfolded? What would you like to continue? What would you like to release? You get to decide. Choose, with confidence.

Okay, your turn:

Where are you at this point in your year? Take stock of your own personal growth. An accounting. An inventory. And, share what has come up for you.

I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, and experiences by leaving a Reply in the Comments section, below. Soul-to-soul!

© 2015 Lori A. Noonan. All Rights Reserved.

With this edition of Soul Notes, I invite you to take a soul soother – a soulful sojourn. It’s time to enjoy the wonder of the great outdoors!

Now, before you picture yourself out frolicking in a field of daisies or lavender (oh, wait, that does seem pretty nice, doesn’t it?) – by outdoors, I simply mean, out of the doors – beyond the four walls likely surrounding you at this very moment.

Outside: It does a body (and soul)  good!

“Outside” needn’t mean that you ought to be headed out into the wilderness, with a Swiss army knife, a compass, and a portable stove. And, it needn’t mean that you’re going to be hanging from a rock ledge, suspended mid-air over the Grand Canyon. Okay, yes — it could be that, if that’s your pleasure!

It may just as well be in an urban setting. How about taking a walk along the storefronts? Or, how about sitting on a bench in a nearby courtyard or city park – between and among the office buildings?

The suggestion here is this: Find a way to get OUTSIDE!

Here’s a wild thought – how about going outside WITHOUT your laptop computer or tablet or smartphone? (Okay, well maybe not until you finish reading this edition of Soul Notes. I know, I know, the irony!) I suppose you could bring your electronic devices with you, if you must; although, I dare say that would kind of be “missing the point”! Stay present. Tap into your spirit – hear what your soul has to say! Enjoy all of the landscape! Observe. Be.

What do you notice?

Invoke your senses. What do you see? What do you hear? What does the air feel like? What do you notice about the energy outside – is it vibrant? Intense? Still? Serene?

Change of perspective

It’s helpful to gain a change in perspective. Yes, your literal perspective will often impact your virtual one.   For example, as a member of a Los Angeles area bicycle club, I joined in group rides throughout various Southland neighborhoods.   One weekend, we cycled from West L.A. to the heart of Orange County, traveling along the L.A. river, and at times weaving our way through traffic to the Crystal Cathedral and back.

I’ve also spent three weeks bicycling through the hills and dales of County Cork in Ireland, engulfed by gale force winds, and pouring rain (along with some sparkling sunshine)!

Venturing out on a bicycle provides an entirely different vantage point.

Getting outside, up and out and away from our usual cooped up confines creates spaciousness and a renewed appreciation for what lies beyond the four walls. It tends to get the blood flowing. It often allows you to stretch your body, your mind, and even your eyeballs.

Wide open spaces

The sky is a really big place…especially when you’re in it!

Yes, that’s me skydiving above Southern California. That’s when I realized that the sky truly is a very big place!

If you have ever leapt out the side of an airplane from two-and-a-half miles up, you likely know what I mean. During a tandem skydive, my instructor and I plummeted toward the surface of the planet at 125 miles per hour, pulled the rip cord on the parachute, and floated to safety as we eventually put our feet back on terra firma. Throughout the jump, I distinctly recall feeling wildly free and in awe at just how truly expansive is the world that surrounds each of us. From time to time, we may only need a gentle reminder!

Ceremonies in the Park

If you’re like most modern workers, for a good portion of the week, you’re proverbially tied to a desk, hunched over a computer within a cubicle, or hunkered down in some other type of restrictive office space.   On days on end some workers may even remain inside from dawn until dusk. Or, if they are out and about at some point during the day, they are scurrying from one place to the next, often in a car or on some form of mass transit.

This weekend, I’m holding another one of my Full Moon and Water Meditation ceremonies. By design, I lead these women’s circles at a local park. My circle participants often remark at how much they appreciate being outside. They relish the opportunity to leave their work concerns behind, and head out into open spaces for the chance to commune with others and with Spirit out in nature.   Feelings of disconnection turn to feelings of connection.

During the next few days, I encourage you to release yourself from the usual grind, and rekindle your soul!

Feel the ground beneath your feet. Listen for the crunch of gravel or pine needles. Look for cloud formations, feel the breezes, bask in the sunshine or moonshine casting a glow or shadows on objects in your path, along your way.

This month the full moon is a SUPER one (meaning it’s especially close to the Earth). This  supermoon makes for an even greater gravitational pull. Be cognizant of the extra power of this August full moon.   I say we go outside and experience it.  See you outside!

Okay, your turn:

When is the last time you consciously enjoyed the outdoors? In what ways did it shift your mood?

I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, and experiences in the Comments section, below.  Soul-to-soul!

© 2015 Lori A. Noonan. All Rights Reserved.