April 26, 2009

West Seattle 5K Run/Walk here I come

Posted in Fitness tagged , , at 11:18 PM by moxiemuse

Masthead for the West Seattle 5K Run/Walk website

Masthead for the West Seattle 5K Run/Walk website

Despite a fever, sore throat, sneezing, coughing, and stuffed sinus cavities, I felt reasonably motivated to take up Hilary’s challenge to participate in the May 31st West Seattle 5K Run/Walk. Hilary, my manager John’s boss, is training to run the event whilst I shall be walking it to make sure me and my back come out intact. 

They even have a 6-week training guide but with only 5 weeks until the event, I need to make up for lost time!

With the weather improving and 6 AM now sporting more light than dark, walking around Ames Lake where I live will be easy for me.

Between my chiropractic adjustments with Dr. Jamie. stretching therapy with Jill, and my Isha yoga practice, I should be in fine shape to get back into my racing saddle once again. It has been almost a decade since I last attended a walking or running event so here’s to fun training and a great 5K walk.

Now, back to my potions to clearing up this unwanted cold.

April 15, 2009

Crystal skulls and crystal heads abound in my head today

Posted in Art, Healing, Movie, Philosophy, Religion tagged , , , , , at 7:05 PM by moxiemuse

MAX the Crystal Skull from Houston, Texas

MAX the Crystal Skull from Houston, Texas

My friend, JoAnn Parks of Houston, TX, is the caretaker of MAX the Crystal Skull. She’s visited my home with MAX and we’ve had many people come and sit with MAX and his energies. MAX is a true wonder of the world when it comes to ancient, dare I say even, off-world artifacts. MAX has been featured in a number of TV documentaries and in radio programs.

MAX came into the life of JoAnn and Carl Parks over 20 years ago when JoAnn, desperate to prolong the life of her dying daughter, was introduced to Norbu Chen, a Tibetan red-hat lama, who used MAX the Crystal Skull to heal her daughter. JoAnn’s daughter lived another 3 years as a result of Norbu’s work with MAX. Norbu gave MAX to JoAnn and told her that one day, she would know what to do with it. It sat in her closet for 7 years until through the result of a chance TV program, she connected with Nick Nocerino, the owner of another ancient crystal skull, Sha Na Ra.

Both MAX and Sha Na Ra are considered to be part of the legend-story of 13 crystal skulls, who were once together on earth acting as a library of vast knowledge. According to the legend-story, the skulls were dispersed when humans abused this knowledge, around the time of the fall of Atlantis or the Great Flood.  Since then, they’ve been hidden until such a time when humans were ready to treat the knowledge these skulls contain with much better care. Some believe, this time is now and thus, some of these skulls are coming out into the open, including via wide media exposure. George Lucas, among others, are big believers of the power of these skulls as evidenced by his movie, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skulls.

JoAnn, with her lovely sense of humor, also told me about actor Dan Akroyd and his fascination with crystal skulls to the point that he created a product around his obsession: Crystal Head Vodka. I aim to try it one of these days.

UPDATE: Well, wouldn’t you know it but the same day I post about crystal heads, so does Ellie Crystal!

April 14, 2009

Sacred Indian site causes strange activity

Posted in Healing, Religion, Travel tagged at 9:54 PM by moxiemuse

This news story is my friend, Stacy, describing what happeneded in her Palm Springs home.

Check it out: http://www.kpsplocal2.com/global/story.asp?s=10177219

April 13, 2009

The power of good film

Posted in Movie tagged , , , , at 6:10 PM by moxiemuse

 

Logo of Spiritual Cinema Circle company

Logo of Spiritual Cinema Circle company

As a charter member of Spiritual Cinema Circle, I’m always delighted to get the DVD in the mail every month. I eagerly open the package (created from post-consumer waste, no less) and feast my eyes on the latest offering of inspirational movies. Most of the movies are independentlly directed and produced and not associated with big studios although there are usually some familiar actors in the mix (James Spade, Vanessa Redgrave, Michael Caine, Andie McDowell). The DVD usually has one feature film and several short films. Each film is introduced by Stephen Simon and after each movie, both Stephen and Mariel Hemingway share their thoughts.

They even listen to their subscribers who can write in and request a movie. I wrote in a few years ago about B’ab Aziz and lo’ and behold, a year later, there it was! The Prince Who Contemplated His Soul is the story of a blind dervish named Bab’Aziz and his spirited granddaughter, Ishtar. Together they wander the desert in search of a great reunion of dervishes that takes place just once every thirty years.

This year, I wrote in about The Trail of Painted Ponies, starring Ali MacGraw, narrating in New Mexico about one of the world’s most fascinating public art projects. No word yet on that one.

Some notables:

Tara Road – Two women — one American, one Irish — swap houses and alter the course of their lives.

Conversations with God — Chronicles the dramatic true journey of a struggling man turned homeless, who inadvertently becomes a spiritual messenger and bestselling author, based on his book by the same name.

One — A documentary about the meaning of life, and taking the question of it all to the masses as well as to spiritual leaders of our day.

Aviatrix — An independent short film labeled as “An intergalatic fantasy adventure cancer comedy romance”.

Stay tuned for more favorites added to this list.

April 10, 2009

My life with thee: 10 years of loving and laughing

Posted in Celebrations tagged , , , at 4:36 AM by moxiemuse

Wiley hanging out in my basket

Wiley hanging out in my basket

NOTE: I realize that this is a post about my anniversary but I couldn’t resist placing a picture of the fruit of our loins right in the center of the post. OK, so he’s not exactly from our loins but you get the picture. Basically, his royal purrballness is a joint accomplishment and his timing is impeccable: I was looking for a picture of Jason and I together and couldn’t easily find one. Shame on me, I know, but hey, Wiley is a decent facsimile 😉

Onto the mushy stuff…

Jason makes me laugh. And wonder. And think deeply about what matters most. Did I mention laugh? We’ve carved out a collective niche in this world, supporting each other in our individual pursuits while simulatneously finding and growing shared interests. I used to joke in the first few years of our marraige that I’d like the epitaph on my tombstone to read: “Here lies Teresa. Her greatest accomplishment was her loving marriage.” I still abide by that statement although I now know that the real reason my marriage is so loving is due to the amount of time each of us has spent and continue to spend on knowing, understanding, and growing our respective inner selves.

He is my ‘oneliest and onlyest’, and I, his.

Here’s to another decade, and then some!

Ti amo tesoro per sempre e un giorno xoxoxoxoxoxoxox I look forward to celebrating big time with my family in Italy this June.

Happy anniversary, M.H.H.S.S.S.L.P.O.E.P.B.T.B.(dual-rated) M.R. husband-pud 🙂

April 6, 2009

Identifying Future Skills for Technical Communicators: An Action Plan

Posted in Work, Writing tagged , , , , at 4:22 PM by moxiemuse

Based on a technical article in the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers journal, iexplore

Here are some notes I took from a future skills lecture sponsored by the Society for Technical Communication-Puget Sound Chapter:

Challenges

Why do we need to identify future skills?

• Continuous technological advancements

• Evolution of technical communications means we need to adapt

Process

What process did Boeing use to identify future skills?

 • Brainstorming*

• Analyze trends

    o Industry

    o Technological

• Consult journal articles

• Scrutinize organizational resources

    o Current skills

    o Customer requirements

    o Correlation of skills to requirements

• Work assignments

• Job descriptions

• Talk to our customers

 

Findings General

• Broaden expertise to include more business-related skills

• Manage contracted services

• Participate in service integration

Customers

• Want proactive partners skilled in leveraging information

• Don’t want support staff

The Ideal Communicator

• Possesses required skills to design, develop, and provide information

• Provides quick turnaround The Myth of Versatilists

• Success in IT will depend less on, say, development know-how or engineering savvy and more on a multilayered amalgam of business connections, strategic planning and marketing expertise.

Recommendations

How to continue to identify future skills

• Analyze current job descriptions and identify changing areas

• Analyze external drivers affecting a company’s goals and mission

• Determine current tools or technologies for acquiring and sharing future skills information

• Join professional organizations

• Attend conferences and seminars

• Adopt mentality of versatilists

• Join SIGs

• Develop a lifelong learning plan to stay abreast of rapid development

• Focus on training that emphasizes skills, not specific tools

• Remain nimble, adaptable, and responsive

*Brainstorming areas of future skills with a focus on processes/skills over tools

• Gestural design

• Animation and virtual 3D

• Editorial

• XML/XHTML

 • Mobile development

• Adaptability

• Content management systems

• Collaboration processes

• Telecommuting

• Instructional videos

• Be catalyst for change and showing value added

• Presentation skills (know how to present projects/models for a changing environment)

• International standards and regulations

• Reuse/single sourcing • Localization and customization

• Interactive assistance

• SEO

• Usability

• Entertaining documentation

• Podcasting/webinars/mobinars

• Miniaturization/robotics

• More need to 508 compliance (accessibility guidelines; more alt text is read by computers than people)

• Touch screens versus keyboards

• More reliance on professional associations to update a technical communicator’s skills

• Content analyst

• Functional analyst

• Project/performance manager

• Games (as a teaching tool)

• Speech recognition tools

• Social media technologies

• Multiplicity of common mechanisms (phone, PC, e-mail, twitter, SMS/MMS)

• Company reputation management

• Outsourcing (and understanding ROI & metrics)

• Self-management skills

• Thought leadership

• Learn how to target women, the very young, and the very old

The why of a few of my favorite herbs, oils, and elixirs: An ever-expanding list

Posted in Healing, Health, Oils tagged , , , , , at 2:50 AM by moxiemuse

 

Watercolor painting of the spikenard plant

Watercolor painting of the spikenard plant

For the cover of my aromatic medicine thesis, I commissioned botanical artist Alana Lea to paint a watercolor of the ancient Himalayan wonder plant, Spikenard. She did a fabulous job and I received a 97% on my thesis 🙂

Herbs, elixirs, and therapeutic-grade essential oils have infiltrated my psyche in the last 12 years or so and I thought I would share just a few of my faves here. 

  • Holy Basil—Revered as tulsi in Ayurvedic medicine. Tulsi means The Incomparable One or the Mother Medicine of Nature in the Ayurvedic tradition, delivering nutrients to the mind necessary for the experience of enlightment.
  • Turmeric—“The Golden Goddess”, a key balancing and detoxifying herb.
  • Ashwagandha—A rasayana herb or adaptogen that works to normalize physiological function.
  • Ginger—Rejuvenates the real seat of all emotions: the heart space that is our tummies.
  • Spearmint—A cleanser of a clogged palate and when diffused, a cleanser of a foggy noggin.
  • Frankincense—The aroma infiltrates the cells and membranes of our heart, mind, and soul. Reconnects one with the One.
  • Lavender—The factotum of the essential oil family. Its uses are myriad.
  • Sage—Ancient Romans labelled it a sacred herb. A stimulating oil that aids one with mental fatigue.
  • Spikenard—The anointing oil of the ancients and a deeply sacred oil for healing.
  • Iolite Crystal Essence Aura Mist with AquaSensoria — This essence was created for me by Sherri Lynn Nelson, proprietess of Rocky Hill Crystal Essences. I prominently display it on the desk in my home office and generously spray it whenever I’m moved to do so. An instant elevator of the spirit.
  • Young Living‘s Valor Essential Oil Blend—Applied nightly onto the bottoms of feet and to the throat, wrists, chest and the base of the neck, this blend enhances an individual’s internal resources.