Monday, June 21, 2010

Dear Blog Readers,

Our blogging of this site is now at an end. We will no longer be posting new material on this blog, however the stories already posted will remain available to be read.

Our books, A Week's Worth of Women, and, Food and What Feeds Us, can always be purchased through this site.

It has been our pleasure to share our stories and poetry with you over the past two years.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Last Blog

The Last Blog

Well, it falls to me to write the last blog for a Week’s Worth of Women, as we have known it. Since writing our “Food and What Feeds Us” book together last fall, our week has slowly been diminishing in the representation of the days, until the few of us left have decided to take a hiatus.

I would like to say what this time, with these women, has meant to me and acknowledge this remarkable input of talented voices that we have listened to, cried with, laughed with, and most of all, honored during these years of meeting every week to share our stories. I wish to thank Jyoti for holding our space and encouraging our creativity throughout the dry or juicy moments of laying down our thoughts and reminiscences. Whether the words came easily or not, in the search of the perfect expression, we learned to offer our creativity without judgment or disclaimers. How amazed we would be at the caliber of writing that emerged.

For me personally, I wish to thank each of you for carrying me in your love through one of the hardest transitions in my life. You listened to my heart words, you were my sounding board, you put up with my political rantings, and stood with me in showers of blessings. I love each of you and am so grateful to have walked this length of the path with you. We have grown together, our innermost gut feelings intertwining, until we became one entity, “A Week’s Worth of Women”, in blog and book.

May our journeys be blessed as we morph into another identity. May our endeavors hold the power that we gained from each other. We are strong together and carry that strength into the stories that are coming. I want to hear them all as they spill out of us in a fountain of expression. We are courageous women, taking on the ability to put ourselves out to the world whatever may. We stand as an example to all people that their stories and their lives have value and cry for the telling.

As we know, nothing is ever lost.

Prema Rose

Saturday, June 19, 2010

While you were sleeping,
mad men,
a world away,
made choices
that effect your world
this morning.
You wake up
and pray for all of them,
and tonight they will gather
while you sleep
and do it again.
Only patience and love
can outlast them.
Keep praying.


Friday, June 18, 2010

Letter to Readers

Dear Blog Readers,

Our blogging of this site is coming to an end the week of June 21st. We will no longer be posting new material on this blog, however the stories already posted will remain available to be read.

Our books, A Week's Worth of Women, and. Food and What Feeds Us, can always be purchased through this site.

It has been our pleasure to share our stories and poetry with you over the past two years.

Thursday, June 17, 2010


I could say “I am so in love with life on this planet and consider this is a very exciting time to be alive right now.” I could say, “Half the time I am fighting down anxiety attacks and the other half I am in a state of bliss.” And all of these would be true.

It is hard to turn on the TV and watch the oil spill in the Gulf Coast. It breaks my heart and makes me feel sad and hopeless.
I have a strong spiritual connection and I do choose to believe that all is in Divine Right Timing and something good will come of this horrible disaster. The President of the Sierra Club was on the news this morning urging President Obama to begin talks on leading our nation away from oil dependency. That is the most hopeful news I have heard lately and aligns with my own point of view. Finally!!

Being with my horse, just standing beside her, brings me great peace. When I walk out through my green grassy lawn to feed the horses I look over their pasture to the corn field, growing by the minute with all the rain that we had this week-end. I look over the corn field to the trees along the Platte River and thank God to be so close to a water way, even if at the moment it has spilled over its borders. I look over the trees and see new snow on the jagged silhouette of the Rocky Mountains.

For twenty years I have been aware of the Mayan Calendar and 2012 debate. Will it be the end of the world or the beginning of a new way of living? I dread those mornings when my first thoughts are filled with insecurity and worry. Where can I find the strength to live through this day?

For the past six months I have been enrolled in an Equine Gestalt Coaching class. I am as high as kite with this program and all the potential it has for helping people. I love those mornings when all I am aware of is the sun streaming in and the birds singing right outside my window. I am not alone.

The tension comes from balancing the anxiety with the bliss. I feel as though I am on the razor’s edge. Looking down into despair is dangerous but it is hard to pull my eyes up to see the peaceful vision that, intuitively I know, lies ahead of me. Sometimes I want to leave my body as I watch my racing brain and thundering heart come to a “Y” in the road, careening out of control. Will they decide to take the turn together or will the split in the road tear me apart? It takes incredible strength and focused energy to breathe deeply and direct this forward momentum. Sometimes I can’t get there for a long time. But then I do. I always do, eventually.

Trust. Faith. Patience. Love. Vision.
Moonlight on the mountains.
Promise for a new day.

* annette

Sunday, June 13, 2010

My Tree of Life

My Tree of Life

I am a bird alighting on a branch of my Tree of Life, evoking the memory of that particular perspective and experience. I write from that vantage point, from that moment in time. What details and emotions arise within that story? I want to capture every nuance and shade of color. I look for the words to recreate that event, that feeling, that inspiration.

I love the writing and am always amazed at the magic of the simple act of bringing pen to paper. Miracles happen in that moment. There is no judgment, just the flow and the trust that the next word and thought will be there to follow the one that has emerged before it. Sometimes I have an inkling of what I am to say but, often as not, the words seem to be bottled up in my pen (or keyboard) and spew themselves out, independent of my mind. Then I will stop and ask if that is really what I mean to say and how I mean to say it. I try not to second-guess the process as I become more amazed at its perfection. Sure, I could say something different, in a different way, but that is my mind getting in the way of just writing.

Someday my Tree will be in full bloom with all the stories and memories that wish to be told. I will call all the other birds and flocks of birds to sit on this branch or other and enjoy the vista.

Prema Rose

Saturday, June 12, 2010

The Angels

They sit on high with glorious wings
unfurled in heaven’s sunlight.
On earth, they wear garbs of flesh
and hang around street corners
whispering in the ears
of the homeless and down-trodden.
At sea, they swim with dolphins
and ride the giant whales
from one continental shelf
to another.
These glorious beings
tend to children’s needs,
the human heart’s travails,
and all manner of life
in between.
Tall, stately, glowing from the inside,
they bruise my heart
with their unconditionality,
and cook me until I’m done,
until I get it, let go,
and move on,
as they do at will,
to newer territories,
flowing in the moments
wherever the strains
of Heavenly music
call them.


Thursday, June 10, 2010

TIME !?!?!

I am not sure what is going on but in the past week time has been playing tricks with me. It started with my desk top home receptionist phone that I have had for many years. I finished a phone call, hung up the receiver, and was shocked to note the time. Geez, where did it go? According to my phone I should have been walking out the door for an appointment. I rushed toward the kitchen and was brought up short when I noted the clock softly glowing at me from the stove top. According to the kitchen, I have plenty of time. I walked back to my desk, which apparently took about 25 minutes to cross thirty feet. I double checked the time with my wall mounted atomic clock to realize that my telephone was the culprit. I reset the phone, which, as mentioned earlier, I have owned for many years. I went on with my day wondering if a phone was like a tetanus shot; if you can’t remember when you got your last one, you probably need a new one !?!?.

Two days later the same type of event happened but this time it was my computer playing with my schedule. For some unknown reason the clock on my computer was incorrect. It has NEVER been incorrect. Once again I was startled and panicked for a moment thinking I was running late. Once again I double checked with my atomic clock that has hung over my doorway for several years. If you are not familiar with Atomic Clocks I must say that they are wonderful. Mine is battery operated. All atomic clocks are keyed into one giant time-keeping apparatus at the National Bureau of Standards, which just happens to be located in Boulder, Colorado. I have no idea how it actually works but it is said to neither gain nor lose one second in 300,000 years. My close proximity to Boulder, Colorado has not, however, decreased my immunity towards losing time.

The next day I woke up and my bedroom clock radio and the microwave clock were blinking at me, indicating that the electricity had gone off in the middle of the night. I would need to reset time. On its own this would be easily explained, but with all the other freaky things going on ???

And then, my desk phone struck again. I was savvy this time and referenced the wall clock immediately. Once again my telephone had stolen about half an hour worth of valuable time. Four times in less than a week multiple time pieces have played tricks with me. A coincidence?

I no longer believe in coincidence. When the universe sends me three hits (or more!) I feel that I must pay attention. So I spent time meditating on my relationship with time. Upon reflection I understand that I obsess about time. My truth in the past has been that, much like money, I never seem to have enough.

Apparent (?) Truths:
In my real estate world, “time is of the essence” means that time deadlines are deal makers.
My business life is dictated by other people’s time lines.
For many years my mantra has been, “I have all the time I need”.
I usually repeat this as I drive furiously towards a meeting it appears I may be late for.
So I shortened it to, “I have all the time”
In metaphysical studies it is taught that time is an illusion; there is no such thing as time.
I have heard over and over, “All things happen in Divine Right Timing.”
And yet the same teachers say that “time is indeed speeding up as our physical vibrations amp up.”
Note to self: “Update our illusion of time.”
Like the atomic clock, it isn’t always necessary to understand how it works.
I choose to believe that “All things DO happen in Divine Right Timing.”
This takes the pressure off of me.
I am at peace with time and my respective time pieces.
“I have all the time…….”

* annette,

Sunday, June 6, 2010



I have just completed another year’s seva (the Sanskrit word for selfless service) for Karunamayi’s annual visit to Boulder. It is a big undertaking to put on several days of programs and I am the lead coordinator for the volunteers. Today we had a Vedic fire ceremony called a Homa. It is a very powerful offering of prayers for the entire planet and all of Humanity. Amma travels to many cities across the United States and thousands of devotees receive the blessings of Divine Mother.

Last night, while I was washing all the chairs and tables for the ceremony, I remarked to my friend and co-coordinator that I really loved doing seva. I have always jumped in to volunteer. She asked me when I had first started and that question brought me back to the time when I was attending an Anglican boarding school as a teenager.

When I was fifteen, I loved spending time in the school chapel. I would get up early for Mass with the Sisters and spend many hours sitting and absorbing the peace of the sanctuary. I was fairly lonely although I had friends, but real love eluded me and I felt the closest to whatever that was in the chapel.

At the end of my sophomore year, I was hoping to be chosen to become a Sacristan. This was a great honor and a two year position. To be able to spend more time preparing the vestments and cleaning the Chalice and the Altar! Isn’t this what every fifteen year old girl longs for? Well, I got my wish.

We prepared every week to sing the plainsong Mass at the convent on Sunday. We had to be quiet and attentive and I have to admit that I enjoyed being the Silence Police and busting the girls for whispering behind the back of our incredibly boring choir mistress. Not that any of us were angels, myself included.

However, this was my first inclination to being in service to God. As my practice has developed to broader dimensions, my seva extends to many living creatures. How I wish that it were really true to be able to say “All” living creatures. I am not there yet. I do think of Jesus’ words when He said,

“In-as-much as you do this unto the least of these, you do it unto Me”.

I ponder the meaning of the phrase, “Selfless service”. I wonder if there really is any such thing as being entirely selfless. What is there in it for me that is a motivating factor? I see how my ego tries to wiggle its way into acts of service. Do I feel somehow “Special”, as I did as a Sacristan? I want to be able to offer myself freely, purely, without any overtones. Even my exhaustion is a pat on the back for extending myself to such a degree. The deep self examination this has brought up in me, prompts me to refrain from seva for a while. I need to look at what life would be like without that stimulus.

We shall see how this plays out. Perhaps it will bring me to an understanding of what selfless service really means for me in my experience.

Prema Rose

Saturday, June 5, 2010

You couldn't sleep...

You couldn’t sleep
because the Moon
was dancing on
the beach’s edge,
weaving in and out
among the reed grasses
on the dunes,
and the holi ones
were calling your name.
That’s why
you couldn’t sleep


Thursday, June 3, 2010

MOMENTUM ~ Part 2.

Last week Brooke came over for her first lesson of the season. We started out in the round pen, but all three of us were bored there very quickly. The wind was up slightly which can make a horse act a little goosey but I made the decision to trust my horse. I asked Brook if she wanted to ride in the much larger paddock area where she had been riding last year. Of course she did! As I opened the gate and led Lakota across the field to the paddock I was watching her body language. Her head came up and her ears flicked forward. She had stepped out of the security of the old boring round pen routine and she was wide awake instantly and on alert for danger.

As we stepped into the paddock I asked Brooke to stay on the fence and walk her around the large area. Lakota moved out easily at a much quicker walk. We reviewed the one rein stop, a procedure to bring your horse under control, or even to a complete stop, if they are moving faster than the rider desires. I was keeping a sharp eye on my horse to make sure that I had made a wise decision to bring them into this larger arena. Brooke looked at me as she walked by and said, “It is much easier to ride a horse with momentum.”

I did a double take and grinned at her. She was sitting very confidently aboard this spotted horse and they were a beautiful picture. “I am so proud of you for noticing the difference and very glad that you brought it up. Why, I remember when you couldn’t even say ‘momentum’ and you had no idea what I was talking about!” She nodded her head in agreement.

We were grinning at each other and I realized that I had relaxed into the situation. As I relaxed, my horse could relax. That is exactly the way it works. Yes, the wind was still gusting and yes, I knew that Lakota was paying a lot of attention to things moving in the breeze but … she also had an ear on Brooke and was paying attention to her. Lakota was stepping out with energy and Brooke had very little trouble getting her up into a nice relaxed trot. We played like we were in a real show and I was giving Brooke the usual commands one by one. “Walk your horse on the rail to the right. Reverse your horse at the walk. Trot your horse. Walk your horse. Stop your horse. Back your horse five steps. Bring your horses in and line up in front of the ring steward.”

Both horse and rider are looking good. We have a big decision to make before the first show of the season. Brooke’s mom and I are deciding if Brooke will advance to the walk/trot classes this year. For the past two years she has been participating in the lead line classes where she basically sits on her horse while I lead her around the arena. Not very challenging for the rider, but I have to walk/trot in deep sand wearing cowboy boots! In the walk trot classes they will enter the arena on there own, just the two of them …. with all the other kids of course, but you know what I mean. I won’t be that close if things fall apart. I am nervous, I wish that I wasn’t but I am.

This is a huge step for all of us.
In the back of my mind I can see a scared young horse running away with me.
“Hey, that was a long time ago,” I can almost hear my horse whisper in my ear.
I know that to move to the next level of my own horsemanship I have to learn to trust my horse.
Can I trust my horse with a small child?
Do I trust Brooke’s ability to handle this horse in that large arena?
Forty-five versus nine hundred pounds.
This is huge.
Talk about momentum, this is catapulting me into a broader relationship with my horse.
Am I ready?
…to Trust.
Hummm, wonder about the other pieces of my life?
This is huge!

* annette

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

MOMENTUM ~ Part 1.

Seven year old Brooke was one of the first neighbors that I met in my new, old farmhouse. She knocked on my door with her girl scout cookie order form in hand and her mom standing in the background. It was cold on the porch so I invited them in, and of course, bought Thin Mints and a box of those peanut butter cookies. A few weeks later she arrived on my doorstop again and delivered my order. YUM! As the weather warmed up I chatted with her and her mom walking their dogs or riding their bikes by my house. I had not met any other neighbors, one of downsides of living in a rural area where houses are not packed onto tiny lots, which of course was also exactly the reason I was living here on my small slice of heaven on earth.

I am not sure where or when the idea popped into my mind to invite Brooke over for horse back riding lessons and then to compete in the local gymkhanas. I had watched small kids compete in the lead line events during my first year of showing with the St. Vrain Riding Club. I do remember talking the situation over with my horse to see if she was up for this adventure. I told Lakota how blessed I felt to live on this little acreage and have her in my back yard where I could take care of and watch over her. I felt like offering this to a horse crazed young girl was one small way we could pay back for our wondrous good fortune. And Brooke reminded me of myself at that age and I will never forget the thrill of my first pony. They are nice folks and good neighbors but they cannot afford to buy their little girl a pony. It just felt right.

The interesting thing has been to watch Lakota with this little girl. Lakota is not an “old pokey nag” by any stretch of the imagination. She is not the most confidant horse in the world and, as a friend of mine so aptly described her disposition at times, “her survival instinct is incredibly strong”. She is built for flight and can be quick as lightning if she feels threatened. You may be wondering, as I have myself, if she is the best horse for the job, but she is the only horse that I have and there isn’t a mean bone in her body. And here she is with Brooke; just as mellow as I could ever hope for. These past few years Brooke has learned how to be with a horse; to groom her, lead her around the property, as well as our riding lessons. What little formal training I have I am willing to pass on to Brooke.

We began in the round pen, a fifty foot round pole enclosure where both Lakota and Brooke feel comfortable. Lakota actually poked around the circle with her head relaxed and hanging down, sometimes we wondered if she was actually sleep walking! Brooke was eight years old when we started and I was talking to her about momentum; how to keep Lakota walking, what to do when she comes to a complete stop, which she did any time she wanted to. But momentum was a brand new word and she had no idea what I was trying to convey to her. I watched how hard it was for a forty five pound girl to make a nine hundred pound horse pay attention. As much as I wanted to step forward and compel my horse to move forward, I wanted to allow Brooke to take charge and make things happen. But we had to come up with some strategy to balance the playing field. I have no trouble cuing Lakota to pick up speed using just my voice and my body position. Forward momentum has never been an issue with this cute little mare. And I did not want Brooke kicking on her sides as I have seen a lot of little kids do with their old slow poke ponies. I was not at all confidant that Lakota would put up with that, nor should she in my opinion. Brooke learned how to cluck to Lakota and how to pick up the reins and turn her head and ask her to step out in a new direction. This way she could lead her back to the rail and pick up a slow walk. We progressed to a fast walk and set up obstacles and she learned to guide her horse around the barrels or cones. She learned to stop Lakota (when Brooke wanted to her to!!) and how to back up.

I have a comfortable t-shirt with an old cowboy on it working with a young colt. The man is Ray Hunt, one of the founders of Natural Horsemanship, as we have come to call this marvelous movement. There is a quote from Ray under the picture that sums it all up.

“Believe in your horse, so your horse can believe in you.”

* annette