Days 21 and 22
I've never seen the water rise in a river SO FAST. My last two days at this location have been soggy. It rained nonstop from Tuesday around 1 until 6 tonight. Gross.
Normally I don't mind the rain... but this was a constant downpour. Trees were soon speeding down the river. Another day and the banks would overflow. But, thankfully it stopped. I still emptied my tanks and prepared to evacuate, just in case. One of the workers said we would only have a 1 hour window to get ourselves out if law enforcement comes and says we must evacuate. So I wanted to be sure I could get my home on the road in time.
Unfortunately, the storm also brought a cold front in... SOOOOO it will freeze tonight... well, tomorrow morning. 8am is the coldest - getting to 30°. Gross. I am trying to get away from the winter. Rude cold front.
I didn't bring enough warm clothes. 🤣
Yesterday, I headed to Whittier, which (I thought) was the reason I came to the area. But, I did not find anything there. Absolutely nothing. Oh, I almost got run over while crossing the street (cars were stopped to let me cross in the crosswalk but a truck wasn't paying attention). It's only because I was fully present in the moment that I saw him coming and saw he wasn't slowing down.
You just never know. And if you're walking around like a zombie, you might get in a pickle - or worse. Don't be a zombie.
It's Halloween today. It doesn't feel like it at all. There are no trick-or-treaters here (since they already did it Saturday). In fact, until today (it's Thursday btw) this place has been pretty empty since Sunday. It went from every spot full, to me and a handful of others in a day (the others were all on the other side of the park... near the river). It's weird being so isolated. And I certainly have not felt southern hospitality here. In fact, I've felt almost invisible.
Except one store I went into. Ha ha. It made me laugh. I practically got a Joey Tribiani "how you doin" from the guy working there. I almost laughed out loud at the difference in his tone from welcoming a gentleman in, then welcoming me. It was a definite "well HELLO there" moment. Which was nice. I hadn't realized how invisible I'd been here for a week.
I wasn't behaving any differently, I don't think. I wasn't dressing any differently. I was still smiling and saying hello, yet I felt invisible.
Now that I know what it feels like to actually be seen, I don't like this invisibility cloak anymore. Harry Potter can keep it.
Tomorrow, I head to a new location. I'll only be in that space for the weekend, apparently everyone is headed the same direction and there just wasn't room to stay longer... plus I want to keep moving to warmer weather. I have to figure out where to next. I must stay, kind of, near there until Friday. I'm delivering Ellis home on Thursday, and Sophie home on Friday... then heading to the ocean. These two portraits will be the 5th and 6th Words Matter Military Edition portraits to go home. Two were warrior portraits... the rest have been memorials (well, one of the warrior portraits turned into a memorial due to a massive heart attack) so while it's a blessing to take them home, it's also heavy.
A heavy task to carry. Maybe I've been in my own cloud and that's why I've been invisible. Who knows. I'll keep doing me. Keep being present. Keep shining. Eventually I'll be seen again. Perhaps this is another thing my soul needs to work through. Comfort in solitude.
I did a podcast interview today. I don't even remember what I said. Even though it happens often, it is still so strange when the words just pour through me. I love it... means I don't have to come up with an answer from my mind... the answer is already there... we just have to be still to hear it instead of wracking our brains to figure it out. I do remember talking about that. Anyway, the podcast is "Fearless Purpose with Brian Cox." It should air tomorrow if he gets all the editing completed... but it IS Halloween, and he has kiddos. So we shall see.
What I do know is I am sleepy... so I'm going to call it a day. Tomorrow is a driving day, so I must have all my wits about me!
Love you all. Hope you are not feeling a funk (Mercury has gone retrograde again...) If you are, take heart that this too shall pass. Talk to you soon!
Day 19 and 20
"One's destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things." ~Henry Miller
This journey may, in part, be about GOING to all the places I've dreamed of going. Visiting new locations, finding grand adventures, meeting new people. But, even more so, it's about SEEING.
Seeing the beauty of this existence instead of all the things that's troubled me. Seeing that there is beauty in the pain. Feeling it, releasing it, seeing what my soul longs for me to see.
It's about BEING. Being in the moment so that I CAN see how wonderful this life truly is. I do see it. Man it's nice to be free.
Our paths may change from what we expected. We may come up against an obstacle SO HUGE (say a rock wall with a giant waterfall) and feel like there's no way we will ever get to our goal...
but if you look close enough
and you really stay in the moment
AND you ask for help from the Universe, your next inspired action step will be revealed and before you know it, you will reach the top.
Just keep climbing.
Day 19 I went to this waterfall. It was a lovely experience. Other than that, there have been no major things happening in RV life except filling propane tanks. OH... and having an infestation of what appear to be ladybugs but probably Asian beetles. That's fun. They're awful and finding their way inside. I have easily captured and released 50 ladybug looking bugs from my home. Who knows how many the cats have caught - never to be released.
Then day 20 took me into town. It was time for an oil change on my truck. I asked the camp manager who they recommend and found a place in town... with a completely adorable cafe/coffee shop just up the street. I sat and wrote in my journal - and in this blog - and on FB. I openly announced that I will publish my book by the Unstoppable Influence summit in October 2020. Oh my, I've got a big year of amazingly wonderful things ahead that are going to require a lot of time. Guess I better get to it!
Love you all! See you again soon on the interwebs!
Days 17 & 18
I'm not currently traveling, and there have been no major RV life experiences...oh, except for Halloween. I discovered they celebrate early, so I ran to the store to get candy. When I left the campground, it was quiet... all the children were preparing for their trick-or-treating. When I returned, the were children EVERYWHERE. Trolls, ninjas, an adorable little Indiana Jones, so many costumes. Two large bags of candy, gone in an hour. Wowzers. You sit outside and just pass it out as they pass by. Whole new experience for me.
I have been in the mountains in NC since Thursday. It's nice to be able to get some work done and not be constantly on the go. Today, I'm going to explore the mountains because I've been working, non-stop, for three days (it's been raining all except for yesterday, so I've been cooped up inside or under a covered patio working. I did get to go for a walk yesterday and sit out on my patio. It was lovely).
Yesterday, while talking to my guy, I had the thought to share about fear based living
We are raised in a fear based life. Many things - for example "don't touch that fire, it'll burn you" - are necessary to learn but, when is it too much? In this new life, I've had many people try to smother me in their fears ... one person even said "don't put your website on your vehicle and home, what if you get stalkers."
I refuse to live in fear. Does that mean I'm purposefully putting myself in situations that could harm me? No. Does that mean I am openly posting my exact location? No. I know what to do and where to go. I trust that I will be guided away from the places and the people that could harm me. And if I'm not guided away, well, that too was supposed to be part of my story. That's life.
When you are living in fear of what MIGHT happen, you cannot...
you WILL NOT enjoy life. It isn't possible to exist in a fear frequency and a peaceful or joyful frequency at the same time.
IT JUST IS NOT POSSIBLE TO LIVE IN FEAR AND LIVE IN JOY. I choose to live in joy. Follow your heart. It won't lead you astray. Our brains will lead us astray VERY often, but your heart knows where you should go and what you should do.
My heart led me to a beautiful human. He fills me up. I miss him dearly... my brain said "don't leave, you don't have to hit the road... you can be fulfilled in Idaho" but my heart said "Go. It may be painful but you have things to find, things to heal, things to do, people to help on the road. He will be with you if it's meant to be." So, even though it was terribly hard to leave, I knew everything would work out exactly as it is supposed to. We'll be together on a beach somewhere. I'm sure of it. Full of joy. Full of love. Full of laughter. Free from fear.
Are you listening to the fear mongers in your life? Is there a fear monger in your head that you listen to? Or are you listening to your heart?
It's time to make a choice. I choose joy, love, light, peace, INFINITE ABUNDANCE. I love you all. Have a beautiful day!
Well, day 16 was pretty dull. I worked on my online courses for iSucceed high school (which is back in Idaho). Not fun tweaking assignments, uploading files, etc. Especially when the internet (or the systems used by the school) are slow af.
But, at one point I sat outside under the covered patio (even though it was raining). I met a very nice couple who informed me that kids will trick-or-treat Saturday night. Guess I better find some candy! This place I'm staying is a very popular campground AND they have all sorts of Halloween activities... so there are children running around EVERYWHERE.
One tiny girl is driving her little jeep down the path past my home. It's moving VERY slow and she's wiggling... or rocking is maybe a better word... forward and backward to give it more momentum. (I've done this when driving a wimpy car up a hill... Have you done it... or is it just me?) Anyway, she's putting her feet up, laying on it, she even stands on the seat as it rolls slowly down the path. Perhaps she's a future X Games BMX rider 🤣.
She's looking at her tires, throws falling leaves away, even falls off at one point and climbs right back up... continually rolling slowly forward. Well somewhat forward, her dad - who is patiently walking beside her - occasionally straightens out the steering wheel to point her in the direction they're headed.
We have that too. The Universe is so very patient with us. Occasionally pointing is in the right direction but, unless you ask- your guides will watch you wiggle and wind down the path with little assistance. Getting frustrated and feeling alone because we think we have to do it alone.
So, that brings me to the blue bird story I recently mentioned...
I knew I would be in the Unstoppable Influence Inner Circle again for 2020...I had already spoken to my mentor Natasha Hazlett about it. However, I felt like I needed more accountability BUT couldn't pull the trigger on that ticket price without confirmation. I said, to the Universe (no other humans were around), "If I am supposed to upgrade to the leadership level, show me a blue bird by the end of the day Saturday."
I saw blue flowers, blue creatures, blue trees... many blue things over the next two days but no blue bird. SO, at the end of the conference (5:30ish Saturday) I hand Rich my form and say "well, I had asked for a blue bird to appear to tell me to upgrade... haven't seen one so here you go, Ignite level again." He, of course, says "hey Natasha, go find a blue bird."
We laugh and I figure, well... there's my answer. I settle into the level Natasha and I had discussed before I arrived. We all go to the Inner Circle reception, enjoying dinner, drinks and company... I forget about the blue bird... but the day isn't over yet. And as I have said before, the Universe has a sense of humor. It likes to show off. It really is fun.
Natasha and Rich invite the last stragglers up to their suite. We're all sitting around as Jackie tries to get the TV to play the video we made for Natasha. A strange noise begins and someone asks "what is that."
Rich says, "maybe it's a blue bird."
I laugh. BUT...as soon he finishes saying it, Michelle says, "there is a bird in here, I don't know what color it is." I tell her and Ronda about the blue bird and Ronda confirms there's a bird in a bag, Jackie brought it. A bird in a bag.
"What color is the bird in the bag Jackie, " Ronda asks excitedly.
I wouldn't believe it until I saw it, then I got nauseous. Whoa. Uh, I had resigned to the littler ticket price... really? Was I REALLY supposed to go to the next level? (Stupid question I know.) Ronda suggests I ask for another sign. So I think and send out my request of number confirmation silently to the Universe.
Within minutes, Natasha says "hey look, it's 11:11"
SHUT UP! I freak out. Look at my phone... which now because it's nearly 12 minutes ahead, says 23:23
Message received. And everyone there got such a kick seeing the Universe answer me. It was wild, indeed.
So, I am now in Natasha and Rich's leadership level of inner circle. I have a beautiful Unstoppable Influence Tiffany bracelet (I've never had expensive jewelry. I feel so fancy 🤣) ... and I have a whole lot of accountability to continue to take massive action.
I have the momentum.
Watching the little girl on her electric ride... she gets to puddles and potholes. She drives right in and gets stuck. Does she just sit there, waiting for help?
She gets off the little car, tries to push, it moves a little... she climbs back on, still stuck.
Off again, this time she goes to the front and pulls. She pulls that little car right out of that pothole. Just like I pulled those signs from the universe. Just like other people can help pull you up. Maybe that's why I'm sharing this story to you. To get you into forward thinking, ask IF you are supposed to do the thing to see a (insert your thing, be specific) and give it a timeline.
Then BE PRESENT. You have to be aware of the world around you. Watch and you WILL get your answer. If you'll just get up and take the steps necessary to SEE the sign (if you've closed yourself in your room and ask to see something from the outdoors... you're not helping).
A few days ago, I asked to see hearts - and not from the Love's truck stop signs - to confirm another thing in my life. Next thing I know, I feel drawn to look at the bumper stickers (I don't normally do that). I find an infinity symbol with a heart bumper sticker. Then when I say "this is fun, how about another" a woman gets out of her car... with a heart on her shirt.
Are you asking? Are you listening? Are you looking? Are you ready for change and amazing things?
I know I am. BIG big BIG wonderful, abundant things are coming.
Love you all! Have an absolutely beautiful day!
Day 15 - I realized I should number these...
I am so grateful. This life is AMAZING. Last night, I made it to the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina. It's beautiful here. The drive was lovely. There are SO MANY trees.
I've now been in 13 states (there's that 13 again - check out the post from a few days ago). I'm staying here for a little while though... North Carolina, that is. I'll be in the mountains for a week, or two, then I'm heading to the ocean. Which means I will have gone all the way from the Pacific (San Francisco) to the Atlantic in a little over two months (granted, I stayed anchored in Idaho the majority of September). I certainly didn't imagine I'd be HERE.
13 signifies the end of something to make place for new beginnings (side note, I told my ex I couldn't live with him anymore, on the 13th... there were more endings and beginnings on the 13th of every month since April... so many things...). We can't see beyond what's right in front of us, so often we only see the troubles... the endings... the pain. BUT, even though it looks like the road is ending (there's only darkness beyond the reach of my headlights) I know there's something over the hill, something around the corner. There's MORE beyond what you currently see.
A friend reached out, one of their teenage relatives tried to end their life. I'm grateful, as is their family, that it was unsuccessful. I am so blessed that, while I was destructive as a teen, I did not try anything. I found my escape in alcohol instead of death. My friend's relative, who is SO loved by their family, thought that their exit from this existence would make everyone else's life easier. I felt that same thing, off and on, for almost 41 years.
FORTY YEARS feeling like I wasn't good enough. That everyone would be better off without me.
I let go of society's expectations. I connected with MY truth instead of the "truth" that was taught to me. A wise friend, Frank White, and I were having coffee... it may have been this same time last year (he's a instrumental mentor in my healing and my business attitudes...look him up online). Anyway, after hearing about his spiritual journey I asked him, "what is the truth." Big question. But he said he had found "the truth."
SOOO I wanted to know. What is this truth you speak of Frank?
Well, as I've come to discover (of course it's what he said as well)...
We each have our own truth.
It isn't until you connect with, and live in, your personal truth that you'll find the joy, love, peace and LIFE that you've always dreamed of. Some people call it your purpose. Your soul mission. We humans have so many words for the same thing.
Connect to find your truth. Meditate. Read. Explore.
Connect with others who can guide you.
But more importantly, connect with the Divine...The Universe...The angels... The light team...The spiritual realm...Your highest self...God...(there's all those human words again... it doesn't matter which one you use). Connect with your SOUL.
The answers are there. The joy is there. The guidance IS THERE! Everything you need is already there! You just have to strip away the layers of bullshit that this human existence puts on us... then you'll find your truth.
All you have to do is open up and allow. Ask for assistance, then LISTEN and WATCH for the signs. It's truly magical how everything - the entire Universe - wants to give you what you want. So, keep your thoughts positive... what you think about is what you get.
"What you want, wants you." ~Joseph Clough THAT is a universal truth. Everything is energy so what you're thinking about is the energy you're releasing. Keep those thoughts elevated and your life will elevate.
OH... some fun RV life yesterday...
I have always wanted to go to Versailles France, London, Paris... WELL, I was driving down the interstate and I saw a sign for Versailles, Kentucky. Of course I had to drive through it. I also went through London yesterday (missed Paris though). Thanks for that fun Kentucky!
Then, I FINALLY reach the town I'm staying in. My GPS has me cross the river... then says "in 800 feet, your destination is on the left"
... uh ACROSS the RIVER!
So I drive further up thinking "maybe there's another bridge" and, end up getting to a one lane mountain road. Thankfully I had just passed a wide space. Backed up (yeah... no backup camera either) and after a 6 point - or so - turn I was headed back to the bridge, to the correct location. Oooooh.... more guidance. Trust your instincts (when my GPS told me to cross that bridge I thought "really, there's no sign, this doesn't feel right"). You already KNOW so trust it! The earthly things will often steer you wrong.
Love you all! I'm going to go get some exercise. Have a beautiful day!
Wow, two weeks on this path. I am feeling the desire to stop and stay somewhere for a little while BUT I also feel the pull to keep exploring.
I was painting last night, very late, and a face came out on my canvas. Someone I love in this lifetime... that has never happened before. Crazy cool! Just goes to show how connected I am with him. But... that's not what I want to talk about today.
I want to talk about stories.
Our minds are SO good at making up stories. That's what I did with my guy, I didn't hear from him so my mind went wild... creating non-truths and REALLY freaking me out.
9 times out of 10, there's nothing wrong, yet we start panicking (that was the case this week). We start thinking about all the things, looking for the wrongs done to us, creating the idea of what is "really" going on and convincing ourselves that this is truth.
I say NO MORE! No more to expectations (we should have no expectation of another human - except that they will do what they say they'll do...but there's exceptions here as well). No more judgment (that one I dropped last year, although it does occasionally rear its ugly head... especially to myself). No more creating stories in the silence. No more doing things how I've always done them. You can't expect different results if you're still doing things the way you've always done them.
No more stinkin' thinkin', as my mentor Natasha says.
What is real? What can you see, touch, smell, hear RIGHT NOW?
When you feel your mind running out of control, recognize what is happening. Acknowledge it WITHOUT judgement - the thing, or thought, is not good or bad, it just is. And look for the lesson. Then release and move on. Period.
I learned a valuable lesson (several actually) in the silence and heartache of the last few days. I am keeping those to myself at the moment because I am still gaining clarity in understanding what happened in my soul. But...I am SO grateful for the pain I felt. The pain is where we have breakthroughs IF we are looking. And now it has been released.
However, because I was deep in healing, I really didn't explore Nashville Indiana. So, I will have to come back here someday. I have North Carolina booked today... back on the road... I ask myself (my higher self, the Universe, my light team)... "where would you have me go today? What would you have me do. What would you have me say, and to whom?"
I'm open to guidance. Are you?
Love you all! Have a beautiful day!
Day THIRTEEN. Thirteen has been a very significant number for me this year. A lot of things have happened on the 13th...a lot has changed. Angel number 13 is basically a message that there will be upheavals but they will be a blessing in disguise.
Boy howdy hasn't that been the truth. Today was another shift for me. I uncovered hidden pains and healed. I discovered that I can change how I respond to other humans, particularly to those I love.
I cried today, had a meltdown in a store then left to go home but popped in another store and started crying over a gorgeous, hand-crafted, dining room table. I talked about it in my FB live but seriously, the triggers can happen anytime, anywhere. You just have to know how to FEEL them, observe them and release them. I'm exhausted today after that. But, it motivated me to paint, got some canvases prepped and as soon as my laundry is finished I'll head back and paint some.
I did not use today as my day of seclusion...I won't tomorrow either because I'm going back into town. Nashville, Indiana really is a cool place... major tourist town... but historical artist colony. Tonight, as I sat in the laundry room, a woman came in. We started chatting. She owns multiple stores. Eventually she asked me what I do... then she said "I could sell your stuff " and told me to stop by her store.
Interesting. I had no plan to be in the laundry room this late... I was busy prepping canvases and forgot I had pulled the sheets off my bed. So got down here much later than I wanted. Divine meeting, maybe. We shall see.
I was writing in my journal at lunch today. I had just written down some I am statements and my new plan which will show people how truly beautiful, how truly radiant, how truly special they are (not sharing the plan yet)... and my check arrives. I added a tip and the total came out to $22.22 ... and today is the 22nd. So, confirmation again! AND Angel Number 22 says "keep an optimistic outlook and a positive attitude as your desires are currently being manifested for you" ~ Joanne Sacred Scribes
So... yeah, manifesting like a mother right now. Gotta stay positive so all that comes back is wonderful abundance.
My laundry is nearing completion, as are my words. Remember that getting triggered is a wonderful thing because it allows you to heal something and elevate your vibration. As we elevate, we heal the planet.
Oh boy... this song, "Who You Are" by Madylin Bailey, just started playing. How're these lyrics for confirming my day...
"Seeing is deceiving, dreaming is believing
It's okay not to be okay
Sometimes it's hard to follow your heart
Tears don't mean you're losing, everybody's bruising
Just be true to who you are!"
Be true to who you are. I love you all!
Now I Know...
Today I lost touch with someone important to me... I don't know what happened but it gave me a ton of time to think. I actually drove most of the day in silent contemplation. I shed some tears... now I am comfortably numb.
The first "now I know" is actually kind of funny...
Yesterday I thought, "I AM going to stay in Nashville a few more days." So I searched Nashville campgrounds.
Only one had a space big enough for me so I booked it...
in Nashville INDIANA
OMG. At first I was going to cancel and eat the cancellation fee. Then I did more research on the town and saw that there's an artist colony here. Perhaps it wasn't a mistake. So, I am still in Nashville... just the little one (according to the owners). 🤣 Now I know to pay closer attention to the address.
Now I know that I am not really as good as I thought at being alone. Not hearing from someone who's been keeping me company every day really hit me today. I am not good at being alone. But, the truth is, the past 12 days have been good for me. I've connected deeper with my soul, I'm beginning to understand the spiritual gifts I have been given, I am trusting the messages I receive. But, I've learned that I don't fully trust myself... my human self. His silence made me question myself- and other humans (especially men😑). SO, thank you for the gift of today's silence. Now I know that I must work on trust. Because I won't fully be able to embrace, and share, my gifts if I don't trust ME.
Now I know I can love again. I opened my heart, even if it doesn't go further, I found a man who showed me that there ARE men who will treat me right. I miss him so much. My heart aches. But I couldn't ignore this journey. Ignoring the prompts of my higher self (of the Universe, God, the Divine, Gaia, WHATEVER you want to call it) is not an option anymore. So even though it breaks my heart to be alone, it is what I was destined to do. To go on this journey, follow a really random path alone. Not alone forever, but definitely in this time of awakening.
Now I know that I get to go back to Nashville, TN someday. I didn't really do the whole "tourist" thing but I want to. During the Unstoppable Influence summit I drove from my KOA to the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and did not explore anywhere else. I enjoyed the camaraderie of my UI family and that hotel is HUGE... you really never have to leave it. My favorite session of summit was Joseph Clough, once again (he's the best hypnosist ever). He had us work on our relationship with money. It was interesting, in the trance, that I saw money as children playing on a playground. From my eyes, they were precious...I truly love watching children laugh and play. However, too much screaming is annoying... and money felt annoying to me. What I discovered in the session is that money just wants to play with me, and have fun. I have been working on having more fun... I think I was pretty successful at that this summer.
The Unstoppable Influence summit was so full of so many signs that I'm EXACTLY where I'm supposed to be... doing exactly what I'm supposed to be doing. Now I know that I must go to North Carolina. There's something there to help me. So, I'll head that way after I check out little Nashville. 🤣
Now I know I must get back to my self care routine. Sunday, after eating far too many carbs and sugar all week, I spent the day sleeping because I had a migraine. That's when I was supposed to play tourist. So I saw the pictures of my UI sisters playing - and I was alone. I think that's why the silence was so loud today... it emphasized that aloneness. But...I have never been without companionship... never allowed myself the true quiet that it needs. I can't think of a single day that I haven't had at least one conversation with someone. I didn't even do very good at allowing it today... instead I reached out to other humans to chat. I think I am supposed to have some time to myself... more than a few hours. We'll see if I can handle that a day or two over the next two weeks. We shall see. (If you get a random message from me after you've seen my FB post that I'm going off the grid, know I couldn't handle the loudness of the silence. 🤦)
Now I know that the numbness, the void, is where magic happens and if I listen and look for signs, I get the answers. So, I really REALLY need to shut off the electronics and listen. Maybe tomorrow will be the day... but definitely when I get to NC.
Well, I think I'll start getting back to my sunrise routine. So, I'm going to try to get some sleep. I'll let you know if little Nashville is worth visiting. I can't wait to see it in the daytime.
I love you all. Truly. Although, there are some people I don't like very much. 🤣
I stayed at the Casey Jones Distillery... it was such a beautiful location. A beautiful pond, rolling hills, cows in the field... and I got to ride in a 1920's pickup truck. The owners of the distillery, AJ and Peg, were the nicest hosts I've had so far. AJ is Casey Jones's grandson. If you're ever around Huntsville KY, I highly recommend going to this place!
I made it to Nashville fairly late in the day (5 pm) and after setting up in my spot, I zonked for about 30 minutes. My body finally said "you made it, now rest." Then I headed back into Nashville (I'm about 20 minutes outside of it) and picked up my dear Unstoppable Influence sister, Dana, from the airport. BOY was that an experience in itself. 🤣 I went around 4 times before I was able to find her. The traffic and entire pick up situation at the airport was insane.
We headed to the Nashville Palace to meet with more UI family (Jacki, Ronda, Orpha and Michelle). There was live music, of course, by Mel Tillis Jr (sister Pam Tillis... dad Mel Sr. Duh). He's just starting to perform... he was the songwriter in the family. We talked with him after, told him about Unstoppable Influence, how his dad was definitely one. He was very grateful and invited us over to Music City Bar. The girls had wanted to go downtown but we had also received many warnings about it... so we went with Mel.
At the Palace though, we ran into a Kuna High School graduate. Crazy small world. He left Kuna many years ago to play in Nashville and has been performing ever since.
Mel talked with us, danced with us, bought drinks for anyone who wanted one (my stomach was funky after an afternoon cheeseburger so I wasn't drinking). The biggest thing was that he recognized us as influencers and respected us for that. I gave him one of my business cards AND we are FB friends now. 🤣 I think all the girls are. He asked if I designed album covers, that he's just finishing his first. That's be cool!
It was such a lovely start to our Nashville experience... I'm excited to see what today brings!
I was also aching though - in my heart - because it was Grandpa's service on day 7 of my journey. Not being with family was so hard. I tried to get a flight back but they were so damn expensive. Then that's when Grandpa sent the candy and Grandma sent the cookies to remind me I'm exactly where I'm supposed to be in this moment.
Still hurts though. I loved that man so much. I'm sure he's smiling at me meeting and hanging out with Mel 🤣
Well, I have laundry to do so I am going to run. First time using a laundromat since the 90's ... should be fun.
Love you all! Go make an impact today!
Missing family...the viewing was Monday, the service is today (Wednesday). I am writing this on day 7 of my journey but I'll still blog about today later because the location you see in this picture was truly wonderful...
Day 5 I got to my camp spot in St. Louis then went downtown to see the arch. I am getting quite efficient at dumping tanks (and loading up to travel...I can connect my truck and get wheels up in less than an hour now...first time (in San Francisco) took 3 hours. Ha ha. I was a bit sleep deprived on that trip so I'll attribute the slow moving and extra checks that I did of everything to that.
At the arch I parked in historic downtown. The roads are cobblestone... the buildings and streets were empty, it was bizarre. I wondered if I was in someplace I shouldn't be... but my spidey senses weren't tingling so I walked down the quiet streets. I got to the arch and - after taking several photos - I went inside and straight to the ticket counter to get a ride to the top. You see, we brought the kids here 15 years ago (I think it was 15) and my ex and ex- mother-in-law didn't want to wait for the many hours we would've had to wait to ride. It has bugged me ever since. SO, this time there was no line... in fact, my ride was going up in about 10 minutes.
Giddy with expectation I wandered down the walkway of the South tram. You first go 50 ft underground to board a space age looking pod before the 4 minute ride to the top, 630 ft. in the air. I rode with a young family - mom claustrophobic and dad afraid of heights... showing their children how to conquer their fears. The little boy may have been claustrophobic as well because he started getting a little freaked out in our pod... said "I can't breathe" and started to tear up. I distracted him with some fantastic tale of magical pods.
The top was glorious. The air was clear so we were able to see miles and miles and miles. Once you get to the top, you can stay there as long as you want. I spent almost an hour, staring out the windows, snapping photos, just enjoying the fact that this is my life... I'm doing things I've always wanted to do. I am limitless. I teared up a few times as my heart swelled with gratitude.
Eventually, I boarded the North tram - because duh...I have to ride the WHOLE arch and you can board either tram from the top. The ride down is 3 minutes. A young man from Salt Lake City was in my pod. We chatted a bit. He was in town for a conference. Seemed quite lonely but I didn't feel interested in touring St. Louis with him... I suggested places I had heard about and said "have fun!"
The gift shop...
I walked in and found myself guided to the back. When I was a child, my family would gather frequently at a pizza place in Nampa-or Caldwell...I don't remember. What I do remember is that Grandpa would buy us those old fashioned candy sticks. We looked forward to it every time. What do I find in the back of the St. Louis arch gift shop but those candies. I started crying... right there... in front of the candy. I was there, as my family was gathering for my Grandpa's viewing back in Idaho. What I didn't know was they were talking about this candy at about the same time that I found it. Grandpa made sure I found it, just to say hello and let me know he was with me. I'm crying a bit as I type this. Mainly because, right now, my family is gathering for his service... but also because I miss him so much already. I miss all my grandparents. The rest of this existence will be quiet without them present in human form... but I know they're with me. Visiting often through signs.
My guy that I left behind in ID said I should try some St. Louis bbq... SOOOO I found a place called The Shaved Duck which also had live music every night. No question, that was where I'd have dinner. Oh my, it was delicious! And the music was wonderful... and there was a trumpet player from Utah visiting his friend (the saxophone player). Weird...2 Utah peeps in town for different reasons and I meet them. I may need to pay attention to Utah. Anyway, the guitarist, an old gentleman by the name of Randy Bahr, struck up a conversation with me because: 1. I was sitting at the bar; and, 2. I was the only person clapping as they completed their songs. I don't understand that but... anyway, they were interesting fellows and I gained at least 2 new fans.
I returned home and slept soundly. Day 6 I thought I was on my way to Nashville....WELL, thankfully I looked at my reservation. Apparently it didn't start until today (Wed.). I swear I looked recently and saw the 15th-21st... but it's the 16th-20th. So I pull into a truck stop thinking I'd find a Harvest Host... there's NO spot for me to park at this truck stop... their parking lot was all sorts of screwy. After topping off my tank, I head down the road thinking I'll just pull off an exit somewhere.
A few miles down the road, there's a rest area. PERFECT, I think to myself. And it was. A very cool rest area next to a lake with walking paths, picnic tables and dogs running around with their owners. Very picturesque. An old couple walking by the lake catches my attention, they remind me of my grandparents. Finally, they are together again... and Grandma is herself again (she had slowly faded away into dementia the final decade of her life). I go inside, there's a whole bunch of vending machines, including one with Starbucks coffee...I look at the other ones and find Grandma saying hello.
I don't remember eating the Keebler Sugar Wafer cookies with Grandma. Sometime earlier this year, I was driving near Marsing (where my grandparents lived) and a ghost smell filled the car as I was thinking about Grandma. It took several miles before I realized what it was... those cookies. I go to the gas station near Lake Lowell and find them there. I send a picture to my aunt Cindy and ask if Grandma liked the cookies. She told me Grandma usually kept them around for us kids.
Right there, in this vending machine somewhere in Illinois, I find the cookies. I sat by the lake, found my spot I'd stop at for the night, and ate my cookies from Grandma.
You are never truly alone. All you have to do is pay attention. Your loved ones who have passed want you to know they're ok... they want you to know that they love you. Watch for the signs!
Well, I'm going to go thank my hosts and hit the road. Love you all! Have a beautiful day! You are so loved.
I had a dream that I was traveling all over the world. In less than 6 months, I sold almost everything I own...bought a Toy Hauler (the "garage" is my art studio) and am now living wherever, whenever...just me, my art, and my cats.