Hello from the Other Side

Hello from the Other Side (Nana kissing Liv)

 

My Nana called on Sunday…from the Other Side. Last week, we found her old cell phone in the bottom of a drawer. At age 90, she passed away in the fall of 2014, so the phone obviously no longer has service. But my seven-year-old, Truman, didn’t care; he wanted to pretend the flip phone was his, so we charged it up. He loved showing his neighborhood friends the lit-up screen as he pretended to make calls.

 
That was fun for several days, but on Friday, Tru told me the phone only had 2% battery life left. “It’s gonna die,” he said as he put it on a family room table and happily skipped off to play with something else.

Fast forward to Sunday night. As we (finally!) decorated the Christmas tree, humming along to holiday songs on the iPod, I got all choked up. I’d forgotten that I’d kept Nana’s Swedish flag garlands and as soon as I pulled them out of the box, I could feel her with me so strongly. Putting up her Christmas tree was always an event with Nana; family would gather to decorate as she gave instructions and marveled at the beauty of the twinkling lights, meaningful ornaments and nods to our Swedish ancestry. Nana’s parents both came to the United States from Sweden and she was fiercely proud of her heritage. So, when we were packing up her belongings earlier this year and I saw the Swedish flag garlands, I knew I couldn’t let them go. I needed to hang them on our tree in honor of Nana and our wonderful, extended Swedish family.

As I began to hang the flags for the first time on Sunday night, I was struck by the song that started playing. It was Kristin Chenoweth’s beautiful Home on Christmas Day. Perfect timing. While she sang and I hung Nana’s garlands, my eyes filled with tears…

And now I promise you with all my heart this Christmas
That all the love we shared will never go away
Your spirit’s everywhere and I hope you know
That you are always here, home on Christmas Day

I knew my mom would be touched, so I texted her this picture and told her Nana was here. Then I posted it on Instagram, saying “I promise to take good care of them, Nana. God Jul!”

And that’s when Nana called.

Out of the blue, Brad and I heard a loud digital-sounding song start playing – a happy little jingle we’d never heard before. We looked around, then looked at each other with wide eyes as we noticed it was Nana’s phone. “Umm, I think Nana just called,” he said. He opened the flip phone, but it was dead. Maybe it was powering off, he reasoned – not knowing that it had only 2% battery a full two days before. My heart raced with delight; I knew with every cell in my body that Nana had found a way to reach out with impeccable timing, putting her stamp of approval on our flag-adorned Christmas tree. My mom and I joked that Nana had finally figured out how to use her cell phone (I’m sure they have amazing tech support on the Other Side!). And now, every time I look at our beautiful tree, I feel like Nana decorated it with me.

lightbulb in hand - project light year 2016The holidays can be so hard when we’re missing loved ones who have crossed over. But when we open our hearts to the possibility that they are with us still, lift our vibration to meet theirs, and pay attention to the signs of their presence…magic happens. I have seen it time and time again in my own life and in the gasp-worthy experiences of friends and clients.

This is why I’ve decided to devote all of next year to joyfully exploring and sharing the multitude of ways we are supported, watched and cared for by beloveds in the Great Beyond. Sacred Sign Language is the just-announced theme of Project Light Year 2016. If your heart feels called to know more, find details and early bird pricing here. I would love to spend next year in awe with you.

*******

(This essay originally appeared in my Divine Interventions newsletter and received such a loving response, I decided to share it here, too.)

Knock Knock. Who’s There? Great, Big Love {05.31.11}

Once upon a time,
at the edge of the woods,
there was an itsy bitsy house with a teeny tiny door.
One day, after sitting empty for a great long while,
the little house heard itty bitty footsteps
on its {off-the-beaten} path.
The little cottage trembled with delight
as a little boy approached.
He was perfect:
just the right size, with a twinkle in his eye!
The little boy could tell right away
that this house was very lonely.
“I will love you,” he said as he stepped inside.
The tiny door creaked, 
happily welcoming the home’s super-duper special and long-awaited guest.
The little boy invited a trusted companion – his daddy – to come inside.
“But no one else,” he insisted.
And as he repeated the same word over and over, 
“mine, mine, mine,”
the little house sighed, 
smitten with its loyal and loving visitor.
The little house felt so cared for and protected
as the sweet boy peered out of its windows,
on the lookout for potential intruders –
whether a tiny critter or a big brother.
“You’re okay,” he whispered.

Meanwhile, the little boy felt equally elated,
so thrilled to discover that, hidden on this giant, spinning planet, 
there was a pint-sized house seemingly made just for him.
He could think of no place he’d rather be.

So, when it came time
for the little boy to leave the little house,
both the boy and the house were very, very sad.

“But we’ll come back again,” said the boy’s daddy.
“And the house will be right here, waiting for you.”
The little boy closed the door and wiped his tears.

And as he skipped away,
down the {off the beaten} path,
he turned around and waved to the pretty little cottage.
“Goodbye, house,” he said.

And though it looked awfully empty once again,
the house was actually fuller than full,
thanks to the great, big love the little boy had left behind.

Knock Knock. Who’s There? Great, Big Love {05.31.11}

Once upon a time,
at the edge of the woods,
there was an itsy bitsy house with a teeny tiny door.
One day, after sitting empty for a great long while,
the little house heard itty bitty footsteps
on its {off-the-beaten} path.
The little cottage trembled with delight
as a little boy approached.
He was perfect:
just the right size, with a twinkle in his eye!
The little boy could tell right away
that this house was very lonely.
“I will love you,” he said as he stepped inside.
The tiny door creaked, 
happily welcoming the home’s super-duper special and long-awaited guest.
The little boy invited a trusted companion – his daddy – to come inside.
“But no one else,” he insisted.
And as he repeated the same word over and over, 
“mine, mine, mine,”
the little house sighed, 
smitten with its loyal and loving visitor.
The little house felt so cared for and protected
as the sweet boy peered out of its windows,
on the lookout for potential intruders –
whether a tiny critter or a big brother.
“You’re okay,” he whispered.

Meanwhile, the little boy felt equally elated,
so thrilled to discover that, hidden on this giant, spinning planet, 
there was a pint-sized house seemingly made just for him.
He could think of no place he’d rather be.

So, when it came time
for the little boy to leave the little house,
both the boy and the house were very, very sad.

“But we’ll come back again,” said the boy’s daddy.
“And the house will be right here, waiting for you.”
The little boy closed the door and wiped his tears.

And as he skipped away,
down the {off the beaten} path,
he turned around and waved to the pretty little cottage.
“Goodbye, house,” he said.

And though it looked awfully empty once again,
the house was actually fuller than full,
thanks to the great, big love the little boy had left behind.

Intention + Kindness = Magic: How I Met Deepak Chopra {04.13.11}

Okay, folks. I am so excited to share this with you! Actually, I can’t quite believe I’m sharing this with you! It’s a longer post than usual, so settle in and buckle your seat belts – there’s magic in the details. 
If you’re a regular reader here, you may already know that I whole-heartedly believe pure magic shows up in our lives when we envision it, believe in it and let go of any preconceptions about how it might or might not happen. Worrying and wondering about how something will come to fruition is like placing an order at a restaurant and then asking the waitress 25 times exactly how it’s going to be prepared. She’s gonna get so annoyed that your service is almost certain to be lousy…and chances are you won’t get what you wanted in the first place! 
Well, speaking of placing an order…a few weeks ago during the radio show I co-host with Colleen and Joan, an ad ran promoting Deepak Chopra’s upcoming speech in Minneapolis. While the commercials aired, I wondered out loud whether we’d be able to nab an interview with him. My co-host, Joan, asked if we might be able to get tickets to his speech. Sitting across from me, she had a big grin on her face and said, “No, wait! Wouldn’t it be cool to meet him!?” We giggled, knowing that tickets to a reception with him before his speech were selling for hundreds and hundreds of dollars. But a girl can dream, right?! And that we did. Joan even thought, wistfully, about what she might talk to him about, should she have the chance to meet him. Then the commercial break ended and we went back to doing the show. We thought nothing more of our imaginary rendezvous with Deepak. 
Well, a couple of days later, I got an email asking if we’d want to interview the spiritual and wellness guru. Uh…hello!? YES! Whenever this stuff happens, my body feels like it’s buzzing. Like it’s just been plugged into the vibration of the universe, tapped into that magic I mentioned earlier. I was so pumped! Deepak’s schedule only allowed for us to tape the interview in advance of our show and my co-hosts couldn’t make it into the station. So, it was just me and Deepak.  He was lovely and we talked about everything from his grandkids to comedy to the future of the world through his eyes. {BTW, I can’t figure out how to post the interview here, so if you’d like to hear it, go here and listen to the April 2nd show, first hour} 
I was a very happy camper – thrilled to have had some one-on-one phone time with him. Before the interview aired, I had emailed our station’s sales director, Sonia, to let her know that if there happened to be any extra tickets available, we’d love to attend his speech. By the time the interview aired, I hadn’t heard anything back about extra tickets. I’d already talked to the guy, so it would have been silly to be bummed about not ALSO getting tickets. 
Well, fast forward to late last week. An email came through from Sonia, saying that she’d just received two general admission tickets for us. Whaaaa!? I knew the seats were selling fast, so I was amazed they were willing to give us two. I emailed my co-hosts the good news; it turned out Colleen had plans for Monday night, so Joan and I excitedly accepted the tickets to Deepak’s speech on Healing, Transformation and Higher Consciousness. 
Okay, are you still with me? ‘Cause this is where the story gets even crazier! On Monday morning, I emailed Joan to  figure out where and when we’d meet before the speech. To my surprise, she sent a note back saying that she was feeling a strong urge to give her ticket to my dad, who has faced some big health challenges over the past few months. In addition to traditional medicine, he has whole-heartedly embraced alternative methods to help him heal; Joan thought Deepak’s speech on healing might be a real gift for my dad to hear. It was a huge act of kindness; Joan owns countless books by Deepak and has even traveled to his Chopra Center for Wellbeing in California, so I knew hearing him speak in person would be a thrill for her. 
I called my dad and offered him Joan’s amazingly generous gift. He excitedly agreed to go, we made plans and I hung up the phone. I then checked my email and saw a note from Sonia, asking me to call her immediately. “Guess what!?” she said at the other end of the line. “They’d like to upgrade you and Joan to premium seats.” My heart skipped a beat and my brain tried to make sense of her words. It couldn’t. I told her what had just happened between Joan and my dad. Would the event organizers be okay with my dad coming instead of Joan? Or did I need to take the ticket and give it back to Joan?? Sonia said she’d call me right back. 
I waited. Buzzing. So immersed in the magic-making going on that it felt like I might electrically shock the next person I touched! The phone rang. I remember Sonia saying, “You’re not going to believe this!” She went on to tell me that the people bringing Deepak into town and organizing the big event were so touched by our story of kindness and healing that they wanted ALL THREE OF US – me, my dad and Joan – to come MEET DEEPAK at a reception before the speech. And, as if that’s not enough to take your breath away, they had also moved seats around and upgraded me and Joan to the second row and my dad to the first. 
Can you even stand it!? It defies all logic, right?! I had to hold back tears. A couple of hours later, there we were, shaking our heads in amazement, standing in the reception room Joan and I had half-joked about being in just weeks before. Deepak was reserved and quiet and kind. After the reception, we took our seats with 1800 other ticket holders. And we were at the very front, a few feet from Deepak during his two hour speech. Oh! And for those of you who get a kick out of my affinity for the number of 11, it was not lost on me that my dad was sitting there in front of me in Row 1, Seat 1 on April 11. Just one more playful cosmic nudge to let me know that the power of intention is alive and well and magic is, indeed, so very real. 

Intention + Kindness = Magic: How I Met Deepak Chopra {04.13.11}

Okay, folks. I am so excited to share this with you! Actually, I can’t quite believe I’m sharing this with you! It’s a longer post than usual, so settle in and buckle your seat belts – there’s magic in the details. 
If you’re a regular reader here, you may already know that I whole-heartedly believe pure magic shows up in our lives when we envision it, believe in it and let go of any preconceptions about how it might or might not happen. Worrying and wondering about how something will come to fruition is like placing an order at a restaurant and then asking the waitress 25 times exactly how it’s going to be prepared. She’s gonna get so annoyed that your service is almost certain to be lousy…and chances are you won’t get what you wanted in the first place! 
Well, speaking of placing an order…a few weeks ago during the radio show I co-host with Colleen and Joan, an ad ran promoting Deepak Chopra’s upcoming speech in Minneapolis. While the commercials aired, I wondered out loud whether we’d be able to nab an interview with him. My co-host, Joan, asked if we might be able to get tickets to his speech. Sitting across from me, she had a big grin on her face and said, “No, wait! Wouldn’t it be cool to meet him!?” We giggled, knowing that tickets to a reception with him before his speech were selling for hundreds and hundreds of dollars. But a girl can dream, right?! And that we did. Joan even thought, wistfully, about what she might talk to him about, should she have the chance to meet him. Then the commercial break ended and we went back to doing the show. We thought nothing more of our imaginary rendezvous with Deepak. 
Well, a couple of days later, I got an email asking if we’d want to interview the spiritual and wellness guru. Uh…hello!? YES! Whenever this stuff happens, my body feels like it’s buzzing. Like it’s just been plugged into the vibration of the universe, tapped into that magic I mentioned earlier. I was so pumped! Deepak’s schedule only allowed for us to tape the interview in advance of our show and my co-hosts couldn’t make it into the station. So, it was just me and Deepak.  He was lovely and we talked about everything from his grandkids to comedy to the future of the world through his eyes. {BTW, I can’t figure out how to post the interview here, so if you’d like to hear it, go here and listen to the April 2nd show, first hour} 
I was a very happy camper – thrilled to have had some one-on-one phone time with him. Before the interview aired, I had emailed our station’s sales director, Sonia, to let her know that if there happened to be any extra tickets available, we’d love to attend his speech. By the time the interview aired, I hadn’t heard anything back about extra tickets. I’d already talked to the guy, so it would have been silly to be bummed about not ALSO getting tickets. 
Well, fast forward to late last week. An email came through from Sonia, saying that she’d just received two general admission tickets for us. Whaaaa!? I knew the seats were selling fast, so I was amazed they were willing to give us two. I emailed my co-hosts the good news; it turned out Colleen had plans for Monday night, so Joan and I excitedly accepted the tickets to Deepak’s speech on Healing, Transformation and Higher Consciousness. 
Okay, are you still with me? ‘Cause this is where the story gets even crazier! On Monday morning, I emailed Joan to  figure out where and when we’d meet before the speech. To my surprise, she sent a note back saying that she was feeling a strong urge to give her ticket to my dad, who has faced some big health challenges over the past few months. In addition to traditional medicine, he has whole-heartedly embraced alternative methods to help him heal; Joan thought Deepak’s speech on healing might be a real gift for my dad to hear. It was a huge act of kindness; Joan owns countless books by Deepak and has even traveled to his Chopra Center for Wellbeing in California, so I knew hearing him speak in person would be a thrill for her. 
I called my dad and offered him Joan’s amazingly generous gift. He excitedly agreed to go, we made plans and I hung up the phone. I then checked my email and saw a note from Sonia, asking me to call her immediately. “Guess what!?” she said at the other end of the line. “They’d like to upgrade you and Joan to premium seats.” My heart skipped a beat and my brain tried to make sense of her words. It couldn’t. I told her what had just happened between Joan and my dad. Would the event organizers be okay with my dad coming instead of Joan? Or did I need to take the ticket and give it back to Joan?? Sonia said she’d call me right back. 
I waited. Buzzing. So immersed in the magic-making going on that it felt like I might electrically shock the next person I touched! The phone rang. I remember Sonia saying, “You’re not going to believe this!” She went on to tell me that the people bringing Deepak into town and organizing the big event were so touched by our story of kindness and healing that they wanted ALL THREE OF US – me, my dad and Joan – to come MEET DEEPAK at a reception before the speech. And, as if that’s not enough to take your breath away, they had also moved seats around and upgraded me and Joan to the second row and my dad to the first. 
Can you even stand it!? It defies all logic, right?! I had to hold back tears. A couple of hours later, there we were, shaking our heads in amazement, standing in the reception room Joan and I had half-joked about being in just weeks before. Deepak was reserved and quiet and kind. After the reception, we took our seats with 1800 other ticket holders. And we were at the very front, a few feet from Deepak during his two hour speech. Oh! And for those of you who get a kick out of my affinity for the number of 11, it was not lost on me that my dad was sitting there in front of me in Row 1, Seat 1 on April 11. Just one more playful cosmic nudge to let me know that the power of intention is alive and well and magic is, indeed, so very real. 

Did You Get My Message? Look, Listen, Leap {04.07.11}

During a seminar with fellow entrepreneurs this week, a woman sitting near me had what Oprah calls an “aha moment.” While working through an exercise on how her business has evolved, this woman suddenly recalled a spring day several years ago when she was on a walk. She had stopped in her tracks when a bird – singing from a tree branch above her – seemed to speak to her. Through the beautiful birdsong wafting through the trees, she felt a very specific message about her future wash over her, loud and clear and comforting. It was a prediction about her dear pets and her future work with animals. She didn’t understand it at the time, but during our meeting, it finally rang true. She was dumbfounded as she looked at her paper, suddenly remembering the bird’s message and realizing it had been RIGHT ON.  
Another woman in the same session shared how she’d had a huge epiphany about her own business after waking from a dream this past week. She described the dream and,, to me, it sounded nonsensical, like most dreams do. This one had something about babies with soccer balls for heads! Crazy talk? Well, this woman had woken up knowing EXACTLY what it all meant. The message embedded in that dream reached her, stayed with her and has motivated her to move full steam ahead on a new project. And she’s so excited!
Has this happened to you? Have you felt guided by your higher power or your own subconscious in a surprising, pure magic kind of way? I believe the clearest messages sometimes come from the strangest places just so we’ll sit up and pay attention. Then it’s up to us to listen closely and take them to heart
I can tell you exactly where I was standing when I heard the voice in 2006 that told me to take a picture of something beautiful every day for a year. I was in my family room, hunched over our white coffee table. I can’t describe the voice or the feeling, but the message was so clear that I couldn’t shake it from my head or heart. I had to follow the directions and it’s how this blog was born. Thank goodness I listened, right? 
Wishing you oodles of love and sacred signs today!

Did You Get My Message? Look, Listen, Leap {04.07.11}

During a seminar with fellow entrepreneurs this week, a woman sitting near me had what Oprah calls an “aha moment.” While working through an exercise on how her business has evolved, this woman suddenly recalled a spring day several years ago when she was on a walk. She had stopped in her tracks when a bird – singing from a tree branch above her – seemed to speak to her. Through the beautiful birdsong wafting through the trees, she felt a very specific message about her future wash over her, loud and clear and comforting. It was a prediction about her dear pets and her future work with animals. She didn’t understand it at the time, but during our meeting, it finally rang true. She was dumbfounded as she looked at her paper, suddenly remembering the bird’s message and realizing it had been RIGHT ON.  
Another woman in the same session shared how she’d had a huge epiphany about her own business after waking from a dream this past week. She described the dream and,, to me, it sounded nonsensical, like most dreams do. This one had something about babies with soccer balls for heads! Crazy talk? Well, this woman had woken up knowing EXACTLY what it all meant. The message embedded in that dream reached her, stayed with her and has motivated her to move full steam ahead on a new project. And she’s so excited!
Has this happened to you? Have you felt guided by your higher power or your own subconscious in a surprising, pure magic kind of way? I believe the clearest messages sometimes come from the strangest places just so we’ll sit up and pay attention. Then it’s up to us to listen closely and take them to heart
I can tell you exactly where I was standing when I heard the voice in 2006 that told me to take a picture of something beautiful every day for a year. I was in my family room, hunched over our white coffee table. I can’t describe the voice or the feeling, but the message was so clear that I couldn’t shake it from my head or heart. I had to follow the directions and it’s how this blog was born. Thank goodness I listened, right? 
Wishing you oodles of love and sacred signs today!

12.05.10: Choosing To Play With Light

We were driving home from getting our Christmas tree yesterday
and were treated to the most amazing light show.
Sorry for the blurry picture; 
I was trying to capture it from a moving car
(luckily, the hubby was driving!).
As the sun set, it looked like one giant ray of light
was shooting from the top of the sun up into the sky.
We were all mesmerized in the car,
bewildered by the sun beaming UP its light.
Maybe there’s a technical term for what we witnessed,
but for now I’m just calling it
magic.

12.05.10: Choosing To Play With Light

We were driving home from getting our Christmas tree yesterday
and were treated to the most amazing light show.
Sorry for the blurry picture; 
I was trying to capture it from a moving car
(luckily, the hubby was driving!).
As the sun set, it looked like one giant ray of light
was shooting from the top of the sun up into the sky.
We were all mesmerized in the car,
bewildered by the sun beaming UP its light.
Maybe there’s a technical term for what we witnessed,
but for now I’m just calling it
magic.

12.03.10: Choosing To Wake Up With Wonder

After a snuggle and diaper change,
my two-year-old and I walk down the stairs together to our main floor every morning.
Lately, he excitedly points out the window each day saying,
“Snow! Snow! Lights!” and then throws in an “oh wow!”
He is simply delighted to see that the snow is still there,
that the lights are still twinkling in our evergreens,
that the world is still just as wonderful as it was the day before.
He’s just as excited to see the night sky.
The other evening, he rushed into the family room, 
grabbed my hand and pulled me to the front window.
“Moon! Moon!”
It was as if he’d never seen something so beautiful!
We celebrated at the window, 
hugging and peering out into the night.
I know someday I will long for magic moments like this 
with my little wonder boy.
So I try to stop and breathe them in,
breathe him in,
 every chance I get.
***********
Psst! Last day to enter this week’s Happy HeART Giveaway
Win TWO fine art prints by the fabulous Lori Portka!