Mojo: a magic charm or spell, commonly used to mean “Inspired Energy!”
Twenty-some odd New Years ago I made a resolution that I have yet to break. How many people can say that? In my truly inspired wisdom that day, I resolved to “Never again make a New Year’s Resolution.”
What I do instead is take the week between Christmas and New Year’s to think about what I want for the coming year; i.e. what personal, emotional goal would I passionately love to achieve? Over the week I think about how to attain that goal so by the 1st day of a new year, I have a crude plan in place. By the last day of that year, I reflect upon the crispness, fuzziness or absence of my achievement. By giving myself a year rather than one day to make a change, I hope that I will stand a better chance of success, which for many years worked like a charm.
Sadly, of late, each year speeds by like time-lapse photography, and I find my goals slipping over the cliff of business and old habits as springtime warms into summer. Pangs of guilt arise in October after the summer’s distraction of fun, travel and exploration fade. Once again, my favorite time of year – the nesting and brooding time of year when leaves blush and nature begins to hibernate – leads me to revisit my year’s ambition. By then it seems a distant dream, a moot point with the holidays looming again, so I have been caving in, letting go, disappointing myself more with each lightning fast year.
I want my Mojo back. I need my Mojo back!
Recently a friend told me a story of how I’d helped her get her Mojo back many years ago. When she had ‘burned-out’ and felt lost, I told her that when I felt like that, I would go to the library (before Google) and walk the aisles until something piqued my interest. I would do this for days until finally, looking through stacks of books I’d selected more out of some hidden instinct than any ‘knowing,’ interests and trends would emerge, shedding light on something I’d want to pursue.
It was a timely reflection she shared, and I decided to try an updated version this year to help me get past my funk of self-disappointments. I knew that I needed to stimulate my passion again, which, to me, equates to curiosity, learning, and giving so I did two things:
#1. I started walking without purpose to explore without intended discovery.
#2. I thought of something I missed in my life. This turned out to be my love of keeping up with culture, science and new thought. As an artist, these subjects feed my mind, which feed my curiosity, which leads to exploration, which leads to discovery, which leads to something I could give or contribute to others, which leads to feeding my soul.
The walking has been life-affirming, and after devouring several new-to-me magazines filled with articles about culture, life, art, science, technology, poetry, and the environment, I feel the dry and cracked plains of my mental studio turning green again.
I invite all of you to share your “Inspired Energy” this January and share your wellspring of renewal with us so we can all learn and inspire each other. I’ll be asking the women here in Kenya the same this month and posting their practices. From time to time, we all need to rekindle our unique spark.
May 2015 be our year of Inspired Energy; innovation, exploration, creation, and contribution. Here is to our success in moving forward to create our dreams and a better world for all.
Happy New Year!
Unbelievable and true. Mr. Flop, as most of you know, was an old, wild zebra, banished from the main herd, who with a special, loyal companion I named Finely because of her delicate pattern of stripes, made his home in our camp. He was last seen in November of 2011. Since then our local herd has grown to over 45 individuals and during the past several months, a small, rebel group of 6, one of them less than a year old, has ‘moved into camp’. Just as Flop used to do, they graze around the sleeping tents all night and feed freely on the fringe of camp during the day, unconcerned with the noise and business of our bustling lives just thirty feet away.
The other day Philip noticed a distinctive mark on the stallion’s back, so I checked my photos – sure enough it’s a match! Flop sired a son who has carved off a number of females from the main resident herd and moved them into camp just has his father had done years earlier. What extraordinary behavior! Mr. Flop’s family lives on in our camp, and we couldn’t be more thrilled!!!
I feel her in the wind, in the leaves, in a bird’s song, I feel her in all of nature around me. I remember the leaf fights during the heavy southern California rains as a child. A two year old giggling from under my bath towel as she wiggled my nose; “Ah, I’ve found an ear … then this must be a nose” as she tugged my ear. The fire crackling as she read poetry, her voice deep and feathery, with the dog, cat, my brothers and me all captured by her passion. I remember our long talks, our dog walks, our nattering over a glass of wine watching the sunset over the shimmering bay. I smell the coming rain and think of how I had to describe it, her birth defect, born without a sense of smell. Holding my hand, head back, eyes closed in fanciful delight as she filled her lungs then in a big whoosh exhausting the cool crisp air and asking, “What does it smell like, the rain”? “Sweet, cool, wet, and grassy”, to this day she and the first rains are one.
I think of her painting, of having to pose for her when she studied photography, of our crazy stories when we worked together, of being curled up in her bed and holding a cold press on her nose bleed weeks before she died. I think of her incredible beauty, her smile, her laugh, of her joy in life, of her deep friendships, of her love of animals and her compassion for humanities imperfections. She lived life fearlessly.
I miss her laugh, her stern but honest critiques of my work, her unyielding determination, her granite like assuredness, her warmth, her singing me to sleep with bar room ballads like; The Night That Jonny Murphy Died.
I smell her on the wind, I see her in the landscape of Africa, I know she is free, I know she is in me. I love her like no other, my mother, my Ev.
Recently, we were contacted by a first grade class at The Manhattan New School, PS 290 for a donation. They were learning about child labor and planned to culminate the project with a Fair Trade Sale.Not only were we proud to hear that such young people were so motivated to help others by donating the proceeds to help workers around the world, but we were DELIGHTED to receive a letter of thanks, along with their newsletter entitled PLEASE, MAKE IT FAIR in which the children explained what was “BAD” about what they learned. Please watch our Facebook page and Twitter over the next couple of weeks as we share with you words of wisdom from our young friends. Here’s a little preview of what one of those sweet children thought about child labor:
Kids sewing 14 hours a day, that’s so terrible. They want to run away, but the bosses would give them a beating. Waaaaaa!
And now, read portions of the introduction from their teacher and a note from a parent helper:
Introduction As we learned how cupcakes are made for restaurants, we found out that there is a lot of child labor in the production of vanilla. When we did research about chocolate, we found out that most cacao for chocolate sold in the USA was produced in Cote d’Ivoire, where 200,000 children do the work. At least 12,000 of those children are trafficked…….
Note from Newsletter Parent All proceeds from our Fair Trade sale & raffle will be donated to the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights.…..(it) strives to end child labor which, as you can tell by our words and pictures, we feel VERY strongly about! (these words & pictures will be what The Leakey Collection will be posting on social media)….we hope the next time you visit a grocery store, you will look for Fair Trade items like bananas, and of course, chocolate. Here are some of the Fair Trade labels you might see…And of course, we at The Leakey Collection also encourage you to look for these Fair Trade labels wherever you shop!
Zulugrass is as versatile as the individual who wears it! And it can fit any wardrobe! That’s why our signature Zulugrass Single Strands have proven over and over that they are the “go-to” accessory for every eco-fashionista.
The photo above of our newest Set of 6 Zulugrass Single Strands (Autumn’s Symphony) shows just a few of the different combinations you can achieve. In addition, each one of these strands can be worn alone, giving you an additional 6 looks!
To add to the versatility, Zulugrass Single Strands can be worn in many different ways: worn long as a necklace, shortened with our necklace clasp or wood hoops, wound 3-4 times around your wrist as a bracelet, twisted, layered with our Zuluwood necklaces or bracelets, with one of our pendants or charms or more. See our Ways to Wear Video on our home page for even more ideas.
How do YOU wear your Zulugrass? Show us by posting photos on our Facebook page.
Today, August 26th, marks the 93rd anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, which granted women the right to vote. Advocates such as Susan B. Anthony devoted decades of hard work to ensure that women’s voices could be heard. The Amendment begins: “WHEREAS, the women of the United States have been treated as second-class citizens…”
Today we honor all those who fought so tirelessly then and to those who continue to fight to ensure that women across the globe are not treated as second-class citizens.
We offer our brand new Words to Live By jewelry collection to remind us that “Women Helping Women” will always “Make a Better World.”
Please enjoy this video of the beautiful and joyful Maasai women singing as they work.