Friday, October 7, 2011

Stranger in a Strange Land

So, some of you know I've been losing weight. This journey recently had a very unexpected...moment? side effect?

A couple of weeks ago, I was at Macy's, taking my lil' tiny mom through Petites and we were going through the "regular" sizes department when I saw this white Jones New York blouse that I wanted to try on, size XL. To my surprise, it actually fit.


I came back by myself a few days later and wandered through this department among sizes XS to XL and trying on various XL items, most of which fit.

But I couldn't shake off the feeling that this was alien territory because I hadn't been there in a good fifteen years. It was very strange and unsettling. Did I belong there? Did I even have a right to be there? I didn't buy anything that day, but I came out feeling rather disoriented.

The following day, I returned and went up to the euphemistically-named Women's department, for sizes 1X on up (and I will admit to having been a 2X-3X). I walked in to compare notes with having been in that other department...and got smacked by an overwhelming sensation of not belonging there any more. What the hey? What happened? This wasn't my home department any more!

That's when I realized I'd turned a crucial corner in this journey and undergone a fundamental shift in self-perception. Sure, I had cleaned out my closet and drawers and donated a good dozen or more bags of clothing to Goodwill. And, sure, I'd been working out at Planet Fitness. And, yeah, when I hit that plateau in July and August (no gain, no loss), I realized I needed accountability and focus, so I joined Weight Watchers and started losing again. And applying detachment, discernment, compassion to myself and the journey itself.

But it all coalesced in these trips to Macy's. My body and soul were telling me that I was on the right track and that I belonged to the "regular" size department from here on out.

I'm finally starting to grok this concept. And that is a very good thing.


Anyone who reads SF/fantasy (and R.A. Heinlein in particular) will understand the title and the phrase. (Yes, I'm part geek.) If you don''s a brief explanation:

To grok (pronounced GRAHK) something is to understand something so well that it is fully absorbed into oneself. In Robert Heinlein's science-fiction novel of 1961, Stranger in a Strange Land, the word is Martian and literally means "to drink" but metaphorically means "to take it all in," to understand fully, or to "be at one with." [...] As one character from Heinlein's novel says: 'Grok' means to understand so thoroughly that the observer becomes a part of the observed ... (Source:

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Exciting Happenings!

Hello, everyone!

There was no newsletter for September because much was developing and happening!

I will hold one last event at my place for a New York medium/shaman - Alexandra Leclere. After that, all events will be held at the new roost for The Owl's Lantern! Read on...

Sunday, October 9th
2 pm
$35 per person
At my Fullerton residence; seating limited to 14 people

Alexandra Leclere is a noted medium and shaman, and author of "Seeing the Dead, Talking with Spirits: Shamanic Healing Through Contact with the Spirit World." She has been featured in the media a number of times and appears in Southern California at The Bodhi Tree and other venues. Because The Owl isn't open yet (more below), she will appear at my place and channel messages from Spirit. Seating is limited to 14 people.

Alexandra is a clairvoyant, clairaudient and clairsentient energy healer who uses her connection with the Spirit World--through seeing, hearing and sensing--to help others heal by identifying and removing their personal obstacles, bring power and joy to their lives. You can visit her website at

For now I'm doing private readings/circles, no classes yet, because...a place has been found for The Owl's Lantern! The lease will be signed this week (knock on wood) and the projected opening date is Saturday, October 22nd. There is much to be done in the interim - booking teachers and readers, healers and artists, events, workshops and classes, getting the place ready, putting together social and print media...I will send out another e-mail to let everyone know the address and definite opening date soon!

With joy and excitement - and let's give Alexandra a big welcome! - SUE

Thursday, August 18, 2011

New Development Circle Added!

Hey, everyone!

I'm adding another development circle to my calendar of events - for the first and third Sundays, and the first one will be this coming Sunday, August 21st at 5 pm.

5 - 7 pm
1st & 3rd Sundays, starting August 21
Maximum of 8 people

Join us in this fascinating and productive group! Each Sunday will have different but great results - in a relaxed setting, we practice creating a circle of energy and discerning how it feels, what it consists of and working with it, because it amplifies and reinforces the rest of what we do. We practice meeting, talking and working with our spirit guides, and if our loved ones come in, so much the better! In doing so, we are strengthening our own various psychic abilities and learning more about them. We also work on grounding and centering the energies when we're done - all of which comes in handy any time you do your own meditations, psychic works, and being among people with difficult energies. This is a very practical, hands-on (or minds-on) ongoing circle, and newcomers are always welcome, while returning participants can come and go any time. With that kind of mix, you learn to work with different energies each time. I don't do readings - rather, I lead, facilitate, and monitor the circle, and I toss out questions, suggestions, and a comment or two on the energies surrounding each participant. If you have dowsing rods, whether home-made or purchased, bring 'em. They help to make the energies "visible"!

Eat lightly beforehand and dress comfortably. The Monday development circle (at my home) continues as usual - and what fun it is!

Jade Healing & Hula Studio
13730 Goldenwest St., Suite B
Westminster 92683
(Go up the stairs, first door on the right)

Contact Ericha Duran, 714-609-0937 or e-mail me for questions or reservations.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

August Doings with Sue!

Hello, everyone!

I'll freely admit I'm no fan of hot summer weather - but summer does have several lovely things going for it. A pool on a hot day, the grill going, and sitting on my patio in the morning, enjoying the blooms of the geraniums, pansies and sky blue morning glories. My apartment has a lot of windows and I love the way the light pours in from dawn to sunset, changing each hour. It's also a more sociable time - I've been reconnecting with people I haven't seen in years (one visit was with women I haven't seen in over forty years!), and I've made the drives to Carpinteria and Santa Barbara, and to the San Jose area. Such drives let my mind rest and expand and declutter. (Speaking of decluttering...I'm mapping out a strategy for cleaning out my garage...wish me luck!)

I know many of you are doing the same - staying cool, taking vacations, making the most of the slow days of August. Putting on my astrologer's hat...The planet Mercury is retrograde until August 26th - it rules communications and travels of all kinds. It doesn't actually go backward - but to our eyes, via the telescope, it appears to do so. This happens three times a year, for about 21 to 24 days at a time, and we are asked to go within and sort out our selves. When we ignore that, communications seem to go more haywire than usual because we're dealing more with the external world than the internal world and it's a case of "when worlds collide." Plans suddenly become altered, travels may be delayed, electronics can malfunction, an item purchased may not work the way it's supposed to, things or thoughts get misplaced, courses of action started peter out or have vastly different outcomes, and misunderstandings are par for the course. On the other hand, lost items suddenly resurface in unexpected places, one hears from people out of the blue, ideas or concepts become more clear, repairs straighten things out. As a rule of thumb, think of all words that begin with "re" - relax, reorganize, rejuvenate, regress, repair, renegotiate, replenish, return, remember, revisit; the list goes on! They are the keywords for any Mercury retrograde. Take the time to slow down, think twice, plan thrice, and go with the flow! For those of us born with Mercury retrograde - I'm one of them - we welcome you to our landscape. ;-)

Here is the calendar of August events! They are at my residence; please contact me to reserve your space and I'll send you my address and directions.

7 - 9 pm
2nd and 4th Mondays, August 8 and 22
Maximum of 8 people

Join us in this fascinating and productive group! Each Monday has different but great results - in a relaxed setting, we practice creating a circle of energy and discerning how it feels, what it consists of and working with it, because it amplifies and reinforces the rest of what we do. We practice meeting, talking and working with our spirit guides, and if our loved ones come in, so much the better! In doing so, we are strengthening our own various psychic abilities and learning more about them. We also work on grounding and centering the energies when we're done - all of which comes in handy any time you do your own meditations, psychic works, and being among people with difficult energies. This is a very practical, hands-on (or minds-on) ongoing circle, and newcomers are always welcome, while returning participants can come and go any time. With that kind of mix, you learn to work with different energies each time. I don't do readings - rather, I lead, facilitate, and monitor the circle, and I toss out questions, suggestions, and a comment or two on the energies surrounding each participant. If you have dowsing rods, whether home-made or purchased, bring 'em. They help to make the energies "visible"!

2 - 4 pm (but I do tend to run into overtime as they're so talkative)
August 14
$40 per person
SPECIAL - Bring a friend, $35 per person!
Maximum of 10 people

No spirit circle is ever the same! I bring through your loved ones (two-footed and four-footed) with love and laughter, as well as messages on an as-needed basis from the guides. No one leaves without being in touch with a loved one - and it's a great joy for me to bring them through. They tell me it's such a joy, too, for them to connect with us like this even though they're around us a lot of the time. Join us for a great afternoon of communications!

There will be no classes or workshops until September because people are wrapping up summer, dealing with back to school shopping or college financial aid, and I'm still scoping out locations in Fullerton for The Owl's Lantern. However, I'm always available for private readings, whether one on one or for private spirit circles, at my place or at yours. Contact me if you're interested and have dates in mind, and I'll check my calendar. And if you are interested in private workshops, let me know. For those of you who live over 50 miles away, I'm always willing to travel to your area - I would be interested in doing a development circle on a monthly or semi-monthly basis in the north San Diego county area, and I need no prompting to jump in my car and drive up to Carpinteria, a town that is near and dear to my heart. For the Bay Area, contact me and we'll get something worked out! Ditto for Arizona and other nearby states.

EXTRA!! I'm considering putting together a trip to Sedona, Arizona and guiding people to the vortex areas in early to mid-October (my guides have told me to do this). Please contact me if you're interested and I'll send you a brief outline of what I have in mind.

Please feel free to forward this e-mail to anyone who would be interested in partaking of what I do.

Enjoy your summer and always remember that Love never dies; it is the energy upon which our Universe runs. Love and be loved - that is all that is required of us. Everything falls into place when we follow this!

Blessings, Sue

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Summer's here with a whole lot of fireworks! While the search continues for The Owl's Lantern to find her own roost, I've put together some exciting and fun doings at my place and one other location. A big THANKS to those of you who came to the LBWS Summer Solstice Faire last Saturday - you helped to make it a great day!

Please feel free to forward this e-mail to anyone who would be interested in attending, and if you're interested in attending, please reply to this e-mail for reservations and directions.

7 - 9 pm, $15
Ongoing - 2nd & 4th Mondays
Maximum of 8 people

This circle has gotten off to a great start! The focus is on you learning how to get in touch with your spirit guides, your loved ones on the other side, or your abilities. This night, we'll continue getting in touch with our guides and obtaining information from them, while continuing to learn to work with energy in an informal, relaxed setting. Dress comfortably and eat lightly before coming.

2 pm, $35
Maximum of 10 people

The "Comedium" is back for another spirit circle loaded with laughs! Need I say more? M&Ms will also be present!

7 - 9 pm, $15
Maximum of 8 people

As we continue to work with our spirit guides and hopefully meet even more guides, I'll discuss how our bodies and senses (physical as well as extra-sensory) play a part in the work that we mediums and psychics do. Newcomers are always welcome! Dress comfortably and eat lightly before coming.

Sunday, July 17 SPIRIT CIRCLE
1 pm, $40 (bring a friend, $35 per person!)
Maximum of 10 people

Join me for a circle full of love, laughter and joy in being with our loved ones again! And, yes, the M&Ms will be available!

Sunday, July 24 ALL'S FAIR IN LOVE & WAR...OR IS IT?
1 - 3 pm, $25
**Different Location** Jade Hula & Healing
13730 Goldenwest, Suite B (upstairs), Westminster
(714) 609-0937 or e-mail me

Okay, you say, I'm a Gemini and my partner is a Virgo. How come we get along even though all the books say we're not supposed to? My boss and I are the same sign so why do we drive each other nuts? Or you might say, well, I'm a Cancer and I can't understand my Scorpio child, help! No worries, help has arrived in the form of this fascinating workshop - which will help you to cope with your boss, child or partner! You'll learn about signs and why they're compatible or incompatible with each other, as well as how the planets play their part (including Mars and Venus) in creating compatibilities or conflicts and how to handle them. Spot readings are included! I have over 40 years of astrological experience and observations to bring to the table.

7 - 9 pm, $15
Maximum of 8

I haven't decided yet what this evening's format will be...but it'll be interesting!


As always, I'm available for readings and spirit circles at my place or at your place. Just e-mail me and we'll work out the details. (I won't be available for readings between July 28-August 2.)

Monday, May 16, 2011

New Circles, Classes & Workshops!

New circles, classes and workshops! Contact me in the Comments section or e-mail me if you have my e-mail address for reservations, directions, and questions.

SPIRIT CIRCLES - Sundays, 1 to 3 pm, May 22, June 12, July 17

As many of you know, I bring in loved ones, friends, four-footed and other companions, and, time permitting, messages from various guides. Join us for a whole lot of love, laughter and joy in reconnecting with our loved ones! No two circles are ever the same (and, yes, the M&Ms will be put out for everyone to munch on). $40 per person. Bring a friend, get $10 off ($35 per person)! 10 person maximum.

DEVELOPMENT CIRCLES - 2nd & 4th Mondays, 7 to 9 pm, June 13 & 27 and July 11 & 25 (if there's enough interest, I'll add May 23)

New! Are you interested in meeting your Spirit Guides? Connecting with your Higher Self? Hearing from the Other Side? A safe, quiet zone is provided with supportive energy for you to meet, connect or hear from those in the other realm. Guidelines are provided and discussed, and there will be various guided meditations as well as other formats, and you can journal or discuss what happens - but you do not have to share what you hear if you prefer. The supportive energy comes from everyone in the room and is shared among the group - and helps to ramp up the connectivity. This is not progressive in that you don't have to attend each and every one of them, but anyone can attend one, skip one, or come to them on an ongoing basis. $15 per person, 6 person maximum. Evenings are when energies are quieter, thus making it easier to "hear" or connect to the other side, but if there is interest in daytime circles, let me know as one person has expressed that interest - it's worth a try.


SYMBOLS IN TAROT, Tuesday & Wednesday, May 24-25 7 to 9 pm, $25 each night or $40 for both nights - Tarot is rich in symbolism and we'll use the Rider-Waite deck (bring yours if you have one), but we'll also look at your other deck(s) and examine the symbols. For example, why is there a lemniscate over the Magician's head and what does it mean (the figure 8 on its side), and why does he have one arm up with a wand and the other pointing downward? Why does Temperance have one foot in the water and one on land? Is there a reason for each suit to have a different color background? The first night we'll look at the Major Arcana and the second night, we'll look at the Minor Arcana (including Court Cards). Beginners and advanced alike are welcome!

TAROT LAYOUTS, Tuesday, June 7 7 to 9 pm $25 - In this workshop, you'll understand why we don't just flip cards over one at a time but arrange them instead in a specific pattern, with meanings assigned to each spot. We'll look at the basic 3-card spread and compare that to the 10 or 14-card Celtic Cross and a couple of far more complex spreads, and discuss how you can create your own tarot spread that works for you. Beginners and advanced alike are welcome, too, but it does help to have some familiarity with the cards.

INTRODUCTION TO TAROT - a six week course that introduces you to the world of Tarot, in which you learn the meanings of the Major and Minor Arcana, the associations, how to do basic layouts and so forth. If there is interest expressed in this - previous students are always welcome to return for tune-ups! - I'll set aside six Wednesday or Thursday evenings for this and announce the details. Minimum of two to hold this class open.

NEW MOON TAROT - this is for people who have taken my Tarot classes and meet to practice the New Moon spread with discussions on the previous month and month to come. It takes place on the day/night of the New Moon or within a few days/night after that. The next New Moon is Wednesday, June 1st so a date will be selected between June 1 and June 6 as May draws to an end.

LONG BEACH WOMANSPIRIT FAIRE - Saturday, June 18 10 am to 4 pm - sharing a booth with my colleague Charles Filius in doing readings all day. It's at the Unitarian Universalist Church at 5450 Atherton, Long Beach (near Bellflower, not far from Cal State Long Beach and the VA Hospital) and this marks my 16th year of being at this semi-annual faire! Definitely great fun.

ASTROLOGY 101 - If anyone is interested in an ongoing class or a one-time workshop on what the signs and planets are all about, give me a holler and I'll work something out.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Balancing Acts & Grumpy New Agers: Sedona

Welcome back to the Grove! During the first week of May, I got to combine two things I love to do the most - being in nature and being a metaphysical and psychic teacher/sherpa. (There are one or two other things, but not here, folks.) I was last in Sedona 24 years ago almost to the week and my guides told me I needed to return, to be a sherpa and to connect once again with them. Everything fell into place so quickly and smoothly, it almost unnerved me but I just simply went along with it all. I have to say it was great seeing California in the rearview mirror for the first time in four long years.

And if you don't know where you're going / Any road will take you there.
(Any Road, George Harrison)

This rather helpful signpost appeared at the end of an unexpectedly long hike around Bell Rock and Courthouse Butte. A walk in the park? Thanks, Coyote, thanks for that one. I can hear you laughing, still, all the way over here.

Sedona is famous for its energy vortexes (or vortices), which can be divided into three categories:

Upflow vortex - a site where energy pours out of the earth (male or yang; energizing). It's found on mountain or mesa tops.

Inflow vortex - energy flows into the earth (yin or female; healing and introspective). It's found in canyons and geologic depressions.

Some locations have vortexes that are balanced between the two types in addition to having both uptake and inflow vortexes.

The whole south end of Bell Rock is where its vortex energy is located - and it has all three forms. When I saw this sandstone area, I was covered in goosebumps and said, "There's no way to remember this...but this is where I met my first guide in 1987..." It was. I don't know the name of the cliffs (I'm sure they have names; everything apparently has a name in Sedona) but when I sat down, facing south, the road, they were behind me to my right. Being at Bell Rock was a homecoming for me among the Old Ones.

Behind me, to my left. It's a very large sandstone formation and my feeling is that this is the nexus of Bell Rock's energies. Repeat this picture twice more and you'll have an idea of the sheer size of it. It's a great spot any way one views or feels it, which brings me to another point. The energies are there but how they're sensed or perceived varies from person to person. They can be subtle, or they can be overwhelming, or they can have a great many nuances. When one enters from the parking lot on the south side, one walks right into the energies and it isn't until one goes to the west end, away from the sandstone formation, that the energies subside and one can compare the differences.

This is to my right, due west, from my seated position and I've revisited it over the years, fleetingly, in my dreams. That may be Cathedral Rock in the distance. After that vantage point, continuing on the trail, the energies quiet down but still spike in other locations on the trail. That was the first day in Sedona and Coyote (aka Trickster) was very much a part of that day and evening!

Truly red-rock country. In 1987, after several days, I said, "This is Mars with vegetation." That still holds true. This is to the right of where I was sitting at Airport Mesa, an uptake vortex located in Sedona by, natch, the airport. Maps pinpoint where the vortex is at Airport Mesa but I am telling you, the energy moves around. One indication of such energies is in the juniper trees - if they're straight, not much energy. If they're fantastically twisted and warped, you can bet on energies being in the area. It was a far easier hike and when I sat down, the reason for my return became clear as it took place there...and I have a lot to sort out from that deep, profound experience. That was part of the second day.

Third day, Cathedral Rock, which is on the west side of Sedona. It's an intake vortex. One enters by way of a park trail to Oak Creek and that is a lovely creek. Before, medicine wheels constructed out of rocks were everywhere. I saw only two - on Cathedral Rock's trail - but what blew me away was seeing all these balancing rocks everywhere by Oak Creek. My perception is that it's a Zen-like act of balancing and helping to balance within. They are impermanent, much as the Buddhist sand paintings are, and when the creek rises, they'll be washed away...and rebuilt by others at another time.

The water is so clear! I can easily get lost in watching the interplay of sunlight and water, reflections, refractions, and the like whether in this creek or in Aquarium of the Pacific or a swimming pool. When I return, I promise myself a good half hour or more of watching the dance between sunlight and water. The water is cool but not cold as I'd expected - probably due to the sun's warmth retained by rocks. Its clarity allowed viewing of hundreds of tadpoles at one location, with dragonflies and damselflies hovering over the surface, and a water spider or two skittering on the surface.

The stillness within us is reflected to the world without. There was a cutoff spot, creating a small, cool, quiet pond with murky waters, perfect for reflecting the sky, the trees and the south side of Cathedral Rock further up the trail. This one was a formation in the sandstone itself, creating a pool for however long that water lasts.

Okay, that's Cathedral Rock in the distance and Oak Creek going by. It was wonderful to be surrounded by water and green, leafy vegetation after the previous two days, let me tell you. The energies were so wonderful that I wanted to dance even though I have two left feet (shod in hiking shoes). Next time.

See the stuff on the sandstone at the left?

O-o-o-kaaayyyyy. That day, there were a lot of New Agers in their 20s with "leis" made out of string and little scraps of cloth, very colorful, scattered throughout the canyon. They had incense going (decent incense, I might add), healings, meditations, whatever. But any time they were greeted on the trail with a smile or a "hello" - they scowled, or looked straight ahead, or stuck their noses up in the air. Upon returning to the park proper and sitting at a cement picnic table in shade, it was noted that they were in two groups. I went to wash my hands and asked a young woman with a "lei" if there was a special event or workshop going on. She glared at me and paused, then snarked, "Um...NO." She spun on her heel and strode off looking as grim and earnest as the rest of the two groups did. Excuse me? Since when did the quest for spirituality become so joyless, disdainful and humorless? I was part of the first wave of New Agers all through the 80s (and the end of the 70s) and none of us had that attitude - there was joy in the quest as one of my fellow new age sojourners commented when I recounted this to her after my return. This was also seen and re-confirmed on the fourth day with someone else, in two different locations - uptown Sedona and again at Cathedral Rock.

Which brings me to this. We are all on the Journey of Life, and we are on a great many different paths, seeking the same, ultimate goal. Our paths are woven together intricately - or they may not intersect - but no one path is better than anyone else's path; no one is superior to anyone else. Take joy in the path and remember to laugh because that eases the path.

My deepest and most heartfelt thanks to the Old Ones (most particularly the Lady, Coyote, and Tony); to the ravens and Raven; to my friends, who helped me to remember to laugh again, among other things; and even to the grumpy New Agers. This was a profound journey and learning curve during and after the trip, and while it will take some time to process and understand everything about it, I have faith in the process itself. Blessings. I'll be back, Sedona.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Lenore the Raven

...with many a flirt and flutter,
In stepped a raven...

The bird saga continues! This is Lenore the Raven: she was just waiting to be created and the moment I first thought of her, she told me exactly how the process would unfold. And I knew exactly to whom she would go.

...with mien of lord or lady...

Well, Lenore had to have a turban. And she had to have her own tarot deck as well as a cloth on which to place the cards. The turban was an interesting process. I started by trying to wrap a traditional turban, following Internet instructions. After using my head, a Barbie doll head, and other props, I had to conclude that I'm just not a turban-wrapper. Yet. I worked out a solution from The Artful Bird. It won't come unwrapped, that's for sure.

...Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling

By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore...

Oh, but Lenore wasn't grave or stern! In fact, she was quite chatty as many a reader tends to be. As I was at the ironing board with the turban, Lenore whispered to me in her raven's croak that she was Poe's advisor as he wrote that particular poem and that she has lived many times in ages past; she understands human nature well from long observation. As she reminded me: Oh, no man knows / Through what wild centuries / Roves back the rose

...the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain...

Lenore was a delight to create, and I was visited by crows at the start and at the end of her creation. She is now happily settled into her new home with someone who particularly appreciates "The Raven," tarot cards and turbans, and all is well!

Quotes from "The Raven" by Edgar Allan Poe

Rose quote from "All That's Past" by Walter de la Mare

Monday, March 28, 2011

Cave vs. Sanctuary

When does a sanctuary become a cave, and vice versa? Well, let's look at the differences.

A sanctuary is where one rests, rejuvenates, and relaxes. It's a place of peace. Like my bedroom, which is done in the shabby chic style, lots of airy white with greens and blues and touches of pink and has sunlight and daylight and sunset light pouring in all the time.

A cave is where one retreats to wrestle with matters of the mind, heart and soul. It's a dark place, whether literally or figuratively. Like my bedroom, which is not literally dark except at night. But figuratively? Couldn't have a better, deeper, darker cave and I've been in many a cave in this lifetime.

When my last job ended two days before Christmas, I was shattered. There was an element of relief, knowing I wouldn't have to deal with the dreck any more, but the pain, the shattering into a thousand pieces, overwhelmed everything else. That's what happens when your entire life changes in a split second. (Truly? No one should ever have to wake up on Christmas morning with tears pouring down their face even before waking.)

Cave and sanctuary: My room folded itself around me and let me just be ME. The healing process began and continues, the letting go of that day and the eight years leading up to it began and continues, the reorganization of my life began and continues, and the transformation began and continues.

One mentally ill man came through my workplace on his bike and said in passing, "Life's a funny old thing, isn't it?" It is. It really is. And if one takes that perspective, then everything sorta kinda falls into place.

I've been laying down the groundwork for the next segment of my life's path. Life goes on. I have family and freelance work and other matters that make up my life; the world didn't stop just because my path hit a very large roadblock. And I'll be making some very exciting announcements in the near future as my dream gets off the ground!

There are those of you who have been beyond supportive: my Milwaukee "twin," my fellow reader and Pal, my fellow sojourner who absolutely believes in my dream, my daughter who also learned the pain of losing a job, my two sisters (especially the one who opened her arms and just held me on Christmas Day), and my mother. Where would I be without any and all of you?

I'm back on my life's path and I'm moving forward, wherever it leads me. The sunlight feels great!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Miranda and the Artist's Learning Curve

This is Miranda. She was my teacher last night, as you'll see, and she was most patient and effective. Every artist, every crafter needs a Miranda. Here she is at a restaurant.

I've sat at sewing machines since I was thirteen, and I grew up around them. Clothes, quilts, wall hangings, artsy-craftsy items and more have come from my Singer sewing machines. I have this ginormous fabric stash in my garage going back 20 years (with some fabrics from 1980-1983). But I had to set aside sewing for the last four years other than making curtains for my mother in 2008 and a sewing job in January - and that job reminded me why I love to sew and how much I miss it.

Well, a week or so ago, I got a Borders 40% off coupon in my inbox. That, for a book lover, is akin to giving home-grown catnip to a cat. Purr-- uh, muttering in excitement, I headed for my local Borders (which, fortunately, is not being closed) to browse. I was delighted to find this book:

I'm a bird watcher. I'm a crafter or artist. And my sister's birthday was rapidly approaching. Need I say more? There are many scrumptious projects in this book and I had the supplies. Oh, which one to make? The week took on a life of its own, as weeks do, and the ensuing time crunch had me eliminating the more elaborate projects. I was quite taken with this Quail project and I had all the fabrics chosen in pale yellows, greens and purples:

Easy-peasy, right? 'Twas the day and night before my sister's birthday...and if that doesn't have red flags and alarms going for all you crafters out there, I don't know what does. The first bird was a pinhead quail. The author's instructions didn't quite work the way they should have, particularly with the head and bottom gussets. Gussets are a necessary evil in sewing 3-D objects, to keep them from being flat and two-dimensional. So I sat down again and reviewed the instructions. I mentally told the author what she could do with instructions #2, 6 and 7 and did it my way. Better, much better. Then I hit a roadblock. I'm not sure what exactly happened. The project wasn't flowing, it was late and I was tired and cold and exasperated and annoyed with myself. This is what my dining room looks like when I'm immersed in a project.

Can you tell I need my own crafting/sewing room? Badly. But I'm utterly grateful for having this much space! In my previous location, I had to use a desk with about 2 feet by 3 feet of clear space in a space created by two sofas at a 90-degree angle in a corner. So this is heaven.

This was taken at about 1:30 AM. By midnight or so, that roadblock hit. I briefly considered setting aside the project and buying something for my sister. I paced back and forth. I asked myself why I was doing this. Come to think of it, that's still kind of a good question...always is.
Because, you see, something shifted. I was in the living room, where my ironing board was set up and the uncut but ironed fabrics were draped over chairs, and I was staring blankly at the fabrics with the quail in my hand...and this tiny, tiny voice whispered in my mind...Hi, I'm Miranda. You know me. I've read Diary of a Mad Housewife (oh, I probably wrote it) and The Bell Jar and I've read Gone With the Wind. I read a lot and my life is crazy and not always my own...and I'm unique. I'm MIRANDA! I looked down at Miranda with shocked delight - remembering - when my creations talk to me or I weave stories about and around them, then I'm tapping into my core, my heart, of creativity, reaching into the recesses of my soul and my mind - how could I have forgetten this?
And I spent a glorious hour or so putting the finishing touches on Miranda - she did not at all want to look prim and proper like the quail project in the book. I created a wire nest with fabric strips woven throughout the wires because Miranda is a mother and loves her home and her brood even if they drive her crazy. I created wires and beads for her quail head feathers and true to form, they wobble, and I created a necklace for her because she just loves bling. But the beak wouldn't stay on. It wouldn't. So I whipped out the disappearing-ink pen and inked in a toothy, mad grin and used pen ink over it. (That purple ink had better air-disappear as the packaging claims. But if it doesn't, then Miranda has a few tattoos!) And I went to bed tired and happy.

In the morning, I found a note from my daughter next to Miranda: Mom, Aunt Lynn's present is beautiful but you should really consider putting a beak on it. It doesn't look like a bird, it has a creepy smile. But it's very creative. (heart)
So I thought some more. Aha! A beak mask! I grabbed felt and orange thread and created a beak mask for the days when Miranda must put on a nice face and go out. It can be removed any time to show that toothy, maniacal grin:

Miranda and my sister (her birthday is today) took to each other and when I showed her that quail picture, she said "uh-uh, I love Miranda, she's perfect" - and talked about Miranda flying until she finds her own spot in her house or craft room and taking the beak mask off as a mood indicator.
Thank you, Miranda. I know you'll be very happy in Lynn's home - and I'll make the other birds MY WAY, listening to them and their stories and knowing to whom they will go.

Friday, March 11, 2011


I was working on my blog post last night, and the topic was Death and what it's all about. I had the news going at the same time...and the breaking news was about Japan's 8.9 earthquake and tsunami. The terrible devastation that we all witnessed on the news rendered my post insignificant and I have set it aside for the time being out of respect for the events still unfolding.

It hits home even harder because I live in that Ring of Fire, in Southern California. My parents and their oldest (an infant) lived through the Tehachapi quake in 1951 - in Taft, right by the epicenter - and my mother's stories are vivid. That oldest, my older sister, lived through the Loma Prieta quake in October 1989 (better known as the Bay Area quake). Her stories are equally vivid. Earthquakes are a fact of life here. We shake, rattle and roll along with the quakes. The east-facing doors in my apartments will not stay open without a doorstop and my bedroom floor upstairs is disconcertingly uneven, due to the apartment's structure resettling from quakes.

I can tell you one thing. When an earthquake strikes, anything above magnitude 5.0, 5.5, you are literally in the moment and the moment seems to last for an eternity, even though it may be 30, 45 seconds, one minute. And when it stops, it feels as if it is continuing and you don't quite realize it. It is always a peculiar sensation, no matter how many times one has experienced it. So for the 8.9 quake to last five solid minutes, that truly is an eternity, an unimaginable eternity.

I'm about 15 to 18 miles inland from the beaches, in a flood basin. Prado Dam is about 24 miles northeast and if it were to go, there would be six feet of water throughout the flood basin. We faced that about seven or eight years ago when the dam sprang a major leak. It's a well known fact that we're long overdue for the Big One and the smaller quakes relieve our fault lines of the tension building up to the potential Big One. I'm okay with that, believe me.

Why? Why do people live in risky areas? Well, why do people live in Tornado Alley? Or near volcanoes (whether active, dormant or extinct)? Or by the beach? In the mountains? Let's face it, our planet is a living, breathing organism and Nature is not going to cease for mere humans. Planet Earth will continue to shift the tectonic plates and scratch an itch here and there. Weather prediction and control? Still very much a developing science. I will allow that I think it is just beyond incredibly stupid when people build tunnels under water (such as BART or the Chunnel). And nuclear plants in earthquake zones? Suicidal. People become complacent, thinking it will never happen to them. Or they figure with fatalism that there's a bullet with their name on it, wrought by an earthquake, that they're not going to dodge. Meanwhile, they've got to live somewhere. Might as well be someplace nice and worth taking the risk.

(That movement, Zero Population Growth, is starting to look awfully good again. So are the annual Darwinist Awards. Mind you, I'm talking about Southern California.)

Can it happen here? Hell, yeah. Will it happen here? Oh, yes. When? We don't have the answer to that one, folks. But I can tell you, when the earth jiggles, and we feel it, our first thought - whether we admit it or not - invariably is, The Big One, is it the Big One? And when it turns out not to be the Big One, we shake it off and resume the daily routine. But it whispers at the very back of our minds, from the shadowy recesses...

Because Nature trumps us. Hands-down.

We Southern Californians would do well to keep that in mind.

For all the people and animals who have lost their lives in the Honshu earthquake and made the transition Home, I offer this prayer:

May the Grace and the Glory, the Mercy and the Compassion, and above all else, the Love of the Lady and the Lord surround you as you continue on your souls' journeys. So mote it be and blessed be.

And my heart and prayers go out to the survivors who must live through this awful nightmare for days, months and years to come.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Spirit Circle at my place!

Whoa! Where did February go?! It has been exactly one month since my last post and I have a LOT of catching up to do. This picture epitomizes what my month has been like. (I took it near Jenny Lake in the Grand Tetons several years ago.) Wildly scattered energies with a few roadblocks while many loose ends have been tied up. I'm starting anew in a lot of areas, laying down the groundwork. Some of it is personal in that I'm reorganizing at home and working on new art projects. Some of it is professional, and I'm learning how to use social media to advertise myself. There are new and exciting developments in store and by later this month I will have lots of news! When a very major door was slammed shut last December, I had to recover from that and start anew on my path. Actually, it was more like being yanked back to my path. New doors are opening in many areas of my life, and I'm grateful and thankful to be able to explore these new paths. A lot has been accomplished to date but the downside was that I didn't have time to blog because my days and half the evenings have been jam-packed.

But first (and this is a first for me), I'm doing a spirit circle at my home!

Saturday, March 20 from 1 to 3 pm

$40 per person

E-mail me at to reserve a spot and to get directions to my comfortable living room. There's a maximum of 10 although I can go up to 12 or 14 (but count on overtime for that). Hope to see you here - what better way to treat yourself to the Spring Equinox than a lively time in the circle?

Stay tuned. A new post is in the works and will be uploaded tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Forthcoming workshops and events!

Here's what's happening for February...

Monday, February 21 2-5 pm - Enjoy your holiday with this Lakewood spirit circle! Bring an open mind, expect the unexpected, and prepare to be reunited with loved ones, friends or animal companions. There is never a dull moment in my circles, with laughter, tears, validation and the joy of being connected with the Other Side. Maximum of 10, $50 per person.

Saturday, February 26 6-8 pm - "Comedium" Charles Filius comes to my Fullerton place for a spirit circle! Yes, I just loooove to put my feet up and enjoy other mediums' readings - he's a regular at my place! He brings an abundant dose of humor to every circle he does. Maximum of 8, e-mail for price. If you want to know more about him, check the link on the right side of the blog for the Extra Large Medium.

Sunday, February 27 2-4 pm - Astrology Demystified - Bring your questions to this Lakewood event! Why doesn't the description of your sign seem to fit you? What's this about a 13th sign? Could you be compatible with someone else even when the books say otherwise? Why do newspaper horoscopes seem to hit the nail on the head sometimes and other times be totally inaccurate? And much more! Bring your birth date, time and place and you'll get a mini-reading (the more accurate the time, the better and I'll explain why). $30 per person, no maximum.

As always, I'm available for private readings and spirit circles at your home or mine anywhere in the Southland.

For reservations, directions and information, please e-mail me at See you there! - Sue

Friday, February 4, 2011

What Happens in a Spirit Circle?

What is a spirit circle, anyway? It's the setting in which mediums do their work with a group of people. But it's so much more than that.

I sit in a room with anywhere from three to ten people loosely circled around me. It can be folding chairs in a circle, or it can be someone's living room where everyone is comfortably scattered around. Even a kitchen table or counter works just as well!

Usually, I'll start by talking a little bit about how I came to be a medium eleven years ago and how - near as I can figure out - it works. I also ask people not to volunteer much information because I have to bring through information from the other side, information I would not normally know about, in order to validate that this is indeed the person coming through. So initially, I prefer yes, no, or I don't understand answers. Inevitably we get to a point where I do have to ask some questions to sort out the information and people coming through.

Whether I'm talking to one person or ten people, you bring so many people with you who are anxious to communicate with you, using me as an intermediary. So often, two people sitting side by side will each have someone on the other side with very similar occupations, looks, names, whatever - and I have to spend a few minutes sorting that out. With a lot of people in the room, sight unseen, it is like a party atmosphere - and sometimes I have to ask them to turn it down so I can focus on the one person coming through.

How do I do it? How do they communicate through me? I've been asked, "are you possessed?" No. Absolutely not. The best way to describe it all is that it's a team effort between me, my guides, the people coming through (and sometimes their guides). I've tried describing it as sort of moving myself over a bit and we all work in tandem. So often I've likened this to using a dial radio - turning the knob and getting static until I tune into a station - and sometimes it's faint, other times it's loud.

I'm given images, phrases, stream-of-consciousness information, and sometimes I'll literally "see" something or someone. It's up to me to translate all of this into information that I can relay to the person in the group. Other times, I'll unexpectedly display a physical mannerism or exactly repeat a phrase the deceased person said. And, yes, it is a struggle at times to understand what someone is trying to relay to me because of the strength of the connection, or lack of strength. Other times, that person just can't stop talking and will keep wanting to talk even when I'm working with another person - they are that excited and enthusiastic about being able to finally touch bases with their loved ones here!

What can you expect from me? I never, ever let anyone leave without a connection. I know too well how it feels not to have someone come through for me at all. So I'm determined, even if we run into overtime, to have everyone connect. You can expect me to be blunt sometimes, and if you're skeptical or not being open-minded, you bet I'll call you on that - because those attitudes block the energies from flowing smoothly on either end. You won't hear me saying "Um, I'm getting a 'J' name..." - my guides and I have agreed that this does not work at all. Either I get a name (or an approximation thereof) or no name at all. I'm telling you like it is, I'm telling you what I'm getting. However...there is one exception to that. Sometimes someone will come through with information that is very private, that might be painful or embarassing or just inappropriate for a public setting. The first time that this happened, Spirit drew black, gauzy curtains across that and I told the person that this information was too private for so public a setting. We had a private reading later on and what I saw and brought through confirmed of the hardest and most painful readings I've ever done in my years as a medium. Spirit and I work closely together to make sure the information is appropriate for a public setting, and I always let the person know. It is up to them to decide if they want a private reading or not.

There are no guarantees that the person you want to hear from will actually come through. I cannot emphasize this enough. Really. And I know I speak for most, if not all, mediums when I say this. You will hear from the people you need to hear from and that doesn't always translate into the people you want to hear from. Coming in with a deep desire to hear from Uncle Elmer or Momma also creates a blockage of energies. If it is mutually agreed between Momma or Uncle Elmer and Spirit, then they'll come through. I have no control whatsoever over that. However, at the end, it's OK to ask me if I can connect with Momma or Uncle Elmer. I can try. But the people who come through are the ones who need to come through. Sometimes they need to make amends, sometimes they want to especially thank you for a kindness (no matter how small) or sometimes it's for a very unusual reason.

And, oh yes, I bring through dogs, cats and horses and other animals. They were so often members of the family, and they loved you so unconditionally that they come through and let you know they are still around one way or another. Whoever wrote "The Rainbow Bridge" knew so well about that (and please don't send me that...every time I read it, I start bawling my head off by the second line and I can't stop).

I can only go two, two and a half hours before my energy level drops. I'm most comfortable with groups of three to eight - never again will I do fourteen people as I did once, which ran just over three hours...because when I do this, it takes a very different form of energy to do it - neither physical nor mental nor emotional. Psychic energy, that's what it is, and I have to ramp it up to meet Spirit halfway - because Spirit is dialing down their energy level to meet me halfway as well. When I say this, I mean that we vibrate at different frequencies - we mortals are at a lower, denser vibration because we're in physical bodies and must work with this. Those in spirit are "discarnate" - not in physical bodies - and vibrate at much higher frequencies. (Another blog topic to look forward to!)

Two things I want to mention before finishing up this blog post. Well, three. First, love never dies. Never. Everything else - our mortal bodies, our physical and geographic surroundings, hatred, anger - dies. Love is the energy that runs this wonderful Universe in which we reside. That's the first thing. The second is that our loved ones truly do miss the two-way conversations and interactions they had with us when they were still here. They're still here with us, but in another dimension (more on that in a forthcoming blog) and they share in our moments of joy and sorrow and celebrations. If you feel Papa or Cousin Manny is in the same room, if you suddenly turn and expect to see them there and they're not - well, they are. You're tuning into them.

And finally, please bring on the questions! Try subscribing to this blog below (I'm not too terribly sure how that works but I know that once you're in, that same user name and password can be used for other blogs on - I want to hear your questions and thoughts!

Until then - Sue

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Art of Intuition with Valerie Rogers

Tonight I want to tell you about a great monthly workshop held by Valerie Rogers - The Art of Intuition. It's a painting workshop - whether you've never held a paintbrush in your life or you've painted for years, everyone is on the same level here. She calls it "abstract impressionistic painting."
Valerie's only rule is, you can't purposely draw something. The workshop is about painting the unknown through a process designed to help us let go and trust our inner selves - and it's an amazing process. I'm so used to thinking as I create that I was actually afraid to let go in the beginning, but once I realized where she was going with this, I painted and learned how to turn the canvas on each side and continue painting - without thinking. It was a breakthrough for me and I've continued the practice at home. The neat thing is, everyone has a different style of painting, from bold to muted, from simple to very complex, and it comes from within each person. As Valerie says, your painting will continue to speak to you long after the class.
Here are two samples of her own work:
What does it look like to you? Look at it from every angle, turn it around, let your mind make the associations. And here's one I purchased from her last year (out of sheer luck - I was the first one to ask about it!); it's titled "Healing Worlds." I lose myself in it every time I look at it:

There is one I've done that I'll post to the blog when I take a picture of it. But if I can do it, YOU can do it too! Her next workshop is on Saturday, February 5, from 10 am to 2 pm at Learning Light Foundation, 1212 E. Lincoln Ave., Anaheim CA 92805. Call 714-533-2311 for more information about it. After that she will go to the third Saturday of each month. See you there! - Sue

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

What It's All About

The name of the blog comes from an e-mail newsletter I used to send out some years ago, when I was working under the name of Lilith Mageborn. I love trees and groves, and people have gathered in groves since the dawn of Time to learn, to communicate, to participate. (I took the photograph of the mossy tree at Filoli Gardens near Redwood City in northern California about a year ago.)

The primary focus of In Lilith's Grove is the metaphysical (mediumship, astrology, tarot, etc.) but I'll also delve into other areas of interest, and I encourage you to ask questions! I will also post my rates, and I'm in the process of developing classes at home in Fullerton as well as in Lakewood. Other teachers, psychics, and artists will also be highlighted.

It's a wonderful and glorious world out there and I encourage each and every one of you to follow your passions and to always ask questions and let the answers take you where they may!

Working on formatting this blog with my sister (bless her!!) is turning out to be very interesting and challenging...stay tuned...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Under construction!

Finally! I can start working on my blog (believe it or not, it was set up in May 2009 but I had no time to work on it) - and I will launch it before February rolls around. Stay tuned!