Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Taurus Sun/Scorpio Full Moon, April 28, 2010

April 28, 2010: Taurus/Scorpio Full Moon (exact at 5:18 am PDT)

Stephanie Gailing who authors Planetary Apothecary describes the Full Moon in Scorpio this way: 
During the Taurus/Scorpio Full Moon we experience the juxtaposition of the practical (Taurus) and the emotional (Scorpio). The interplay between these two signs helps us to forge an awareness that what we see—what has form—is reliant upon that which is unseen but deeply felt.

As it reflects the relationship between the ground (Taurus) and the underground (Scorpio), a garden is a great image to consider when looking at the meaning of this Full Moon. Our senses appreciate the glory of the flowers, trees, ferns, and other earthly Taurean gems that flourish. Yet, it’s important to remember that none of this growth would be possible were it not for that which occurs out of sight, below the surface—such as the complex root structure, the hardworking earthworms, and the decay that feeds the soil. What we are called on to appreciate during this Full Moon is that the beauty we see is not just on the surface but also exists in the places that we may often shy away from, those we may consider “unseemly” or “out of bounds.” Given that Mercury is aligned with the Full Moon, we may be able to more readily connect with the words and images that can help us give voice to these reflections...you're looking at a day filled with passion and pleasure.

Pete and I are getting ready to take a ferry ride to Whidbey Island where we'll be checking out a new place to be at least temporarily.  Today's moon energy is super-charge and "the relationship between the ground (Taurus) and the underground (Scorpio), a garden is a great image to consider" is what I'm putting my chips on.  Being Scorpio Sun I have been challenged and conflicted by the Tauruses in my life, yet we are two ends to the same kind of passionate energy. 

Vardo living with only two wheels to ground us does require letting down the Scorpio guards so we can feel the comfort of the ground.  I have plenty enough underground energy for a tribe, so my prayers to Mahina in Scorpio are for a lowered guard where it is not necessary while respectful of those internal watch doggies who have a keen nose for stuff doing no good.  Wish us luck!

While searching for a photo that might fit this post I found instead this bit of Full Moon Wisdom

Full moon = hair cuts for todos  if you get your hair cut on a day with a full moon it will grow faster.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Remember the three little pigs?

We, Pete and I are in the middle of an ongoing process to heal and make our way in the world -- both on a material and spiritual level.  The process is messy, and moves in all directions at once sometimes, and stands stark still at others.  With our home as tiny as a closet, perched on two wheels, the reality of limits forms sharp squares and we run into the walls easily because of course it takes no more than four or five steps to reach the farthest wall in a vardo. 

I often use astrology to angle my way through the maze of my life that will not sort from within my brain or mind.  Astrology gives me a Cosmic Pie to view and chew; the planets and locations/definitions of the Houses helps to navigate.  With the language of astrology prototypes of behavior show themselves and I jiggle the information and try to apply insight to my life.  This post is another one of those jiggles of information.  We are living with others (they are our benefactors) and have been more than once in our lives.  We receive benefit and yet, the imbalance of a relationship like this can become a pattern ... and that's what is happening here in the Mill Town.  The balance has tipped, the boundaries have been crossed and the process for healing or inflamation is in the balance.

Yesterday, when I walked through the side door of the main house I smelled chemicals.  Strong, unexpected and unidentified.  I held my mask to my face and also held my nose, and closed the basement door behind me.  WTF!  I know that chemicals are used in the house and have made adjustments to their use.  The smell yesterday was different. 

By mid-day I was sick from the exposure; headache, nausea and weakness; then anger and rage, disorientation.  I had time to rest and do the things that calm me.  Finally, late in the afternoon I was able and ready to ask , "Did you use chemicals?"  "Yes, their in here."  She indicated the kitchen, and continued saying, "it was grungy and I swabbed down all the counters with cleaners."  God, it was worse than I thought.  I turned to her from behind my mask and said, "My friendship with you is a real contradiction...You choose to use chemicals that make me sick!"  Caught unaware(?) she said, "I'm sorry."  I could not remain in the kitchen much longer than that, and said, "I've gotta move on."

The ripple of those actions are felt today:  Pete has had his own conversations with both friends who live here and share their home.  Boundaries and limits are the issue and more will be revealed.  My karmic lesson is "Cooperation" and I am learning that there are always at least two sides to every story.  The title of this post and the cartoon here point to the children's tale "The Three Little Pigs" ... a parable for teaching what values count in the 'building of one's home".  I know that I come with issues that surround my self-value and the astrology of the 8th House helps me look at myself with insight and compassion:  I have a legacy of conflict about self-worth, resources and the ability to make my way in the way (materially).  My conflicts with "benefactors" have repeated themselves throughout my life, and MCS has magnified these conflicts. 

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Try to make a dollar out of 15 cents/Saturn in Virgo; Disciple to make a dream real

When I was a girl, I remember a rhyme we used to say that included the phrase about a Chinaman.  In those days, politican correctness had no meaning and in our neighborhood our own family was part of the Chinese.  The rhyme included "Chinaman, Chinaman sitting on a fence, try to make a dollar out of 15 cents."  Many times over in my life I've seen or heard the dictum of my Chinese ancestors being thrifty with their shackles and wise with their money and able to save pennies to make a dollar out of 15 cents. 

Today, there are few things you put your fingers on which are not made in China and that is an issue I'm not going to tackle with this string of words.  What is on my mind and in the foreground is the hard work involved in finding a place for us to live from our VardoForTwo.  A recent photo series chronicled our journey of building the tiny wheelie home and the places we have been since.  Last night Pete and I sat and discussed the details of our reality.  We will need to be on the move again, soon.  Through our discussion the missing details, the ones that I thought were clear showed no so clearly in Pete's thinking.  Pete came up with new information and together we stirred the emotions of fear that can come up when you're woken from a dream that is not grounded or not yet firm.

Molly Hall from About.com offers this angle on dreams not yet firm or not grounded with her article on
Saturn in Virgo:
Saturn is transiting in Virgo from September 2nd, 2007 to October 29th, 2009. After going into Libra, it will retrograde back into Virgo from April 7th to July 21st 2010.

Saturn in Virgo Themes: Discipline to make a dream real; going back to nature; discovering limitations of basic necessities; purification of body, mind, spirit; awareness of toxins in the environment, food, air; getting rid of non-essentials; establishing Cause & Effect in nature, business, work plans; becoming self-sufficient; being cautious about spending on extras; considering the needs of the community; thorough research that leaves no stone unturned; refinements to the fields of healing and medicine.

Further along in Hall's article she writes:

..."Saturn in Virgo is an ally for projects that call for precision, endurance and responsibility. It allows you to roll up the shirt sleeves, dig your hands in the mud, and create a self-sustaining system you can be proud of in the end. This might mean an actual garden, as in the nourishment of life. But it also means "cultivating your own garden" of talents through discipline. Saturn here helps you find a rhythm in the day that leads to a sense of productivity."
..."Saturn tends to bring out the fearful aspect of a sign, when not channeled in a way that feels stabilizing. That means we'll need to guard against nervous OCD-type worry that feeds on itself. It's helpful to find new outlets for the jittery physical energy of Virgo, such as crafts, gardening, martial arts, penning snail mail, book binding, yoga, tending to animals, volunteering, tree-hugging, giving and receiving massage, independent research, purifying in a sauna or hot tub, visiting a sacred place, creating an altar, researching enviro-toxins, home re-organizing, restorative nature projects, regular exercise, ritual cleansing, detoxing mind, body and spirit, and reaching for a new level of well-being...

Click here to read the entire article
VardoForTwo was a dream two years ago.  Two years ago last March, we lived from the Subaru and went from place to place with that "nervous OCD-type worry that feeds on itself" a constant condition.  Life in crisis is obsessive compulsion if not paralysis.  Each step of the way since that point in time in March Pete and I have moved gradually through the hard work Hall describes as a "call for precision, endurance and responsibility..."cultivating your own garden" of talents through discipline."  Life from VardoForTwo is a social and economic experiment.  When we are able to detach from worry and despair, it's possible to see and appreciate -- accept, what we cannot change.  Yes!  We will need to move from the yard where we have parked here in the Mill Town.  No, we do not yet know whether the next place will "work" or how long we can be there.

We can take small steps.
  1. we can visit that next place early next week.
  2. we know the painting next door will happen next week or not long after.
  3. we know painting is toxic for me.
  4. we know the vardo will need to be fit with running lights.
  5. we know I can wear an ankle brace to support my recently discovered injury/break.
  6. we know the Vardo keeps us safe.
  7. we know we are committed to each other.
  8. we try to live one day at a time.
  9. we do the work of tending to our 'inner gardens' (Pete back at yoga, planting a garden, facilitating projects, learning to create a business; and me writing messages via the blog and communications-supporting wonderful people/friends new and long-term and healing old wounds and both of us learning to live creatively with MCS)
  10. we know we have 15 cents. 
  11. Is that enough? 
For now that will have to be enough to build on. 

Can you relate to the disciple and hard work of making a dream real?

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Prayers for the Water EARTH DAY, April 24,2010

Today is Earth Day all around our sacred home some call "Earth" others call "Papa Honua" and still others call "Turtle Island" and more still call "Gaia."  By which name you call her, this home and the all her elements cries to be healed.  Palaoa, the great whales sing songs that mourn the pristine seas, Salmon with memory of the great migration into the sea are stopped from their traditional journey weakened by the toxic slough of Human Kind's chemicals. 

Earlier this week, Pete and I made our own historic journey in Scout the trusted Subaru (sometimes our home, and often our mode of getting keia to kela).  With fears faced, I sat in the back seat with an oxygen tank, ceramic mask and many prayers said to have my spirit guides and my belief that the risks of travel through two hours of pollens that tax my system and a large gathering within a building were risks that I was willing to take. 

The gathering as I have written in a previous post, was one of the first in the Pacific Northwest, to honor and bless the waters of Earth and in particular The Salish Sea (the waters from the south Puget Sound of Washington north to the waters along Vancouver Island in the Canadian) known to the Peoples of this continent's First People.  We did make that journey to gather at the Long House on the campus of Evergreen College along with 400 others who knew this gathering was of great import.

Oxygen in a tank allowed me to be within a building with many people for the first time in more than three years.  I used to ceramic mask that is necessary for many who have sensitivities to the plastic cannula usually used for breathing oxygen.  Regulated at a very low mixture, the oxygen gave me just the reassurance that I could breath fresh air instead of chemically fragranced or volative organic oils from Nature's storehouse.  I am grateful to say, it worked! 

Pete and our long-time friend Joan, reunited in our own celebration of renewed friendship chatting and being part of a sacred ceremony to bless the waters of Earth, and the water that is within each of us humans.  With songs, words and the inspirational photography of water crystals --the work of Dr. Masaru Emoto of Japan, a sacred Long House was filled with messages and directives.  The song A DROP OF WATER written and sung by Washington artist Dana Lyons was the invocation.  The singular and power drip of water as a drum beat and a heart beat called to each of us.  Songs for the Salt Water and the Fresh Water from The First People of The Salish Sea graced us with connection.  Words from the elders of these First People inspired us with their strength, their actions and their unwaivering commitment to maintain their birthright and their kuleana (responsibility) to maintain their traditional rights to a way of living that was unseparated from clean healing water.  Among the many powerful messages I heard, the story of one First People's leader, touched me at such a tender place.  His story linked the Creator's exquisite sense of love and compassion for Earth and the Human through the single drop of water -- the tear.  Through that duct placed in the corner of a human eye the water within makes its way back to Earth ... connected always.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Mercury in Retrograde in the sign of Taurus: an excellent time to review the meaning of HOME IN A VARDO

That's me looking through the unfinished Dutch door of our vardo to be. 
It's winter, 2008 and we are in White Center, WA

A snippet of photos from Vardo For Two string along here as a way for us to review time and place and the meaning of "home" as Vardo Folk.  Much of life is unpredictable, and though there are plans more often than not there are adjustments.  With Mercury in Retrograde from April 17th through May 11th a relook at making a home from a vardo seemed right.
while on an 'ole day walk in West Seattle ... home means so many things 

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Waters of Life Blessing: two events worth knowing about, April 21st and April 24th

(Link above for more information about the sacred ceremonials)

We are mostly water.  We human are more water, and particular salty water than any other element.  At the core of our being, the connection with water on the planet Earth is as essential as fresh air.  Yesterday was one of my walking-by-the-sea times, graced with energy and capacity I am able to get my dear old self from the vardo to the shore of water in Mukilteo.  Lately, my walks along this shoreline has filled me with both the refreshment of clean and enlightened water-infusion and the meeting of young people who are the inspired stranger.  The park was busy with others --young children with parents, youthful bikers with their helmets and leathers, a former neighbor from a lifetime past out with her beagle and then there was the young couple perched on a log not far from where I parked myself on the sand.  With my cellphone minutes plentiful, I called my brother in Waimanalo and told him when he answered how it is his inimitable island-pidgin and his voice that stirs me to call.  In years past our relationship was so chaotic, too much the result of patterns of dysfunction that neither of us could be blamed for, yet we have created messy times.  Those times seem to be tempered by time and attending, at least on my part and to the boundary setting that we both respect thanks to the on-set of my life with MCS.  Funny, how that works.  Anyhow, my brother and I enjoyed the company of our conversation laughing deep and long at the relativeness of 'what is cold' or 'what is a life lived well.'  Bundled was he on O'ahu because the winds make for a chill at 75 degrees.  I told him I was in short sleeve shirt in the muted sunshine of 56 degrees.  He was amazed.  Back to that couple perched on the log. 

When I finally said "I love you," to my brother and stood with the help of my o'o the walking stick, the sandy path led me within eye-view of the young people on the log.  The young black man looked me directly in the eye, I smile at him.  "Are you on an adventure?"  "Yes, I am."  I extended my free arm in a gesture of all-there-is-ness.  "What are you looking for?"  "I'm out looking for life as I find it."  The young man engaged continued, "Where's life all around you?  Is it sea life you're looking for?"  I think I might have repeated myself and said, "I'm looking for life just as I find it!"  The young man nodded and said, "I value that."  "Thank you,"  I said smiling back at his companion who was broadly smiling back under the large dark sun glasses.

This beach I walk is less than two miles from the home where I lived, raising a son that is older than that young stranger.  Also on my walk yesterday, I met a very young boy with a haircut that was the sort I would have given Christopher at the same age.  His mom, a Native First People woman smiled in my direction as I called a friendly hello to her.  The isolation that is so dense sometime with the life I live as a vardo-woman can overwhelm me.  Connections with this mom and her young son and the couple on the beach log, dilutes the isolation and reclaims my self-regulating brain cells retraining them to believe there is more than despair and isolation. 

Being by the water or in the salt water has calmed and healed me in small and miraculous ways over my six decades.  The Waters of Life Blessing that will happen next week, both here in the Pacific Northwest and all other the Planet are events that can connect us with ourselves and our core self.  Dr. Masaru Emoto has been instrumental in raising consciousness for the Healing Nature of water.  He will be at Evergreen College in Olympia, Washington on Wednesday, April 21, 2010.  Pete and I will head south and meet two old friends ... all goddesses willing!  I will need to invoke all the help I can get to travel that distance and gather with as many people as will be there. 

Thursday, April 15, 2010

PREPARING for the Canary Caravan Carnival May 14,15,and 16th

The first MCS Blogger and Allies Carnival is coming up in a month.  Here are a few dates, astrological transits and their implications for being in the flow of things, and a deadline for crafting your submissions.

Mercury goes Retrograde on Saturday, April 17th for three weeks through Tuesday, May 11th

Sandra & David Mosey from Zodiacarts create a valuable tool of Moon Phase Calendars.  Here is what they have to say about Mercury in Retrograde.  I'll use this guidance to try to say in the flow of things as I organize this very first Carnival.  See how their insight might work in your life.

While Mercury is retrograde, familiar channels of communications become tangled and confused. Expect delays and changes in plans. Use this time for researching and problem-solving.

 This is a great time to rewrite and edit, rework an old project or successfully repeat a task. Reevaluate and reconsider, but hold final decisions and approvals until Mercury goes direct.

The tendency is to initialize or finalize projects prematurely. The contents of verbal or written contracts and plans made now may later seem inadequate or unclear. This is not a good time to buy on the spur of the moment without investigation.

This is also not a good time to purchase electronic equipment or cars. Major purchases may be reduced in price after the retrograde period and you can save money by waiting. Major repairs or surgery performed now may be incomplete or plagued by unexpected repercussions.

Double-check and reconfirm every detail. Typed or written errors are easily overlooked, paperwork mislaid, appointments forgotten. Let your sense of humor overcome the challenge of unexpected adjustments.

'Ole Cycle of the Moon of the Hawaiian Moon Calendar begins Tuesday, April 20th for 4 days through Friday, April 23rd
(Sorry for the inaccurate dates previously posted)
Attending to the energy of the Moon, Mahina, in my Hawaiian culture is a valued practice for me and Pete.  We need the guidance and structure that suggests rest or review rather than pushing forward on agendas or projects that really need to be wait.  Much like the longer cycles of Retrograde, as in Mercury's retracking, the 'Ole Cycles are mini reviews like the 10th Step in a 12 Step Program we continue to take personal inventory and when we find something to adjust, or make amends for, the opportunity is there for the taking.

No new posts on our blogs happen during the 'Ole Cycles so this post prepares our readers for our absence as we do the internal work of sorting, weeding, reconsidering, and editing what has already begun.


So, to all you bloggers and allies who are collaborating with the Muse, and considering the story, prayer, prose, photography, activity, exercise, or whatever else that suits you keep this deadline in mind, please.
Please email me your submission on or before, MONDAY, MAY 10th.  I will assemble and organize the 3-rings of our Carnival with posts over the three days, using the flow of activity that Mercury, Mahina and life as I know it.  My email address is ssvardo@gmail.com.

Link here for the full description of the Categories for the Carnival.  Join in with your MCS related stories, successes and submit to the TAP dance that adds such diversity to our lives so often engaged in avoiDANCE.

Hope your day includes moments of joy and laughter, insight and love.  I wish that for my own dear self as well.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

NEW MOON in Aries, tomorrow April 14, 2010 ENVISION NEW BEGINNINGS

The New Moon is a time to purposefully envision new beginnings.  In a wonderful and progressive way, we on Earth can tap into the energy of the celestial goddess and goodness of Mahina The Moon.  Our relationship with Mahina and the vardo sky above us, Pete and I learn to re-align or remember what it feels like to be in the flow with the universe and the hard wiring that was stamped into our natal astrology charts.  A couple weekends ago we were out in one of our favorite towns, Snohomish.  There we know a possibility for enjoying a Snohomish Bakery treat or breakfast in the sunny window seat is better than a kick in the keester.  'Getting out' is one of the major re-alignments that is a slow and deliberate activity.  Two years ago, there was no 'getting out' to join society; too many new experiences was re-tooling our knowledge base.  So, our outings to Snohomish have become a joy and a simple pleasure.

Though the trees had already begun their mating rituals (pollination!) I took a chance and thought a walk along the river would be worth the risk.  It was, at least for several minutes.  There in the middle of a quickly flowing Snohomish River were a quartet of ducks doing what smart birds know how to do:  "go with the flow."  It was instant inspiration and glee to see them.  The pollens were clogging me quickly but not before the birds lent their example to my love of nature's teaching.  It was perfect!

Today's New Moon in Aries is a time for us to get in the flow and set our intension with the added bonus of Aries' fiery energy.  Elsa P. one of my long-term astrology favorites has this to say about the Aries New Moon...

...Aries is the first sign. It comes rushing in so when you set your intention this month make sure to use the most of this inspired, fiery energy. Consider the house in your chart where the new Moon land (24 Aries) and look for a new beginning...
The New Moon in Aries lands in Pete's 8th House of shared resources and rebirths.  The New Moon lands in my 3rd House of communication.  What do I envision for us with this next 29 days and nights?

I envision courage to continue honest communication about our needs and wishes for a place to live safely, sharing resources with people who 'get the conditions' of an MCS reality. 

One day at a time, Pete and I and others who live with Multiple Chemical Sensitivities walk a thin line of equilibrium.  Society has created systems that pave over the inconsistencies it would deem in need of control.  The construction industry depends upon pavement to erect its development.  The processes of development are toxic, expensive and costly to the health of all living beings.  This morning, the attached article was posted at The Canary Report.  It's the latest status of our friend Linda Sepp's living situation in downtown Toronto, Ontario.  Linda's eviction triggers the adjustment to my original post for ENVISION NEW BEGINNINGS. 

...For years, she’s been the last resident in an Ontario neighborhood slated for demolition by a landlord wanting to raze the area to build new. The place is decaying, crumbling and frequently vandalized. Linda’s house has a leaky roof and basement, problems with mold, a contaminated water pipeline, and a leaky gas stove (now disconnected). She doesn’t want to be there, but where is she to go?

The problem is, how does a disabled person with acute chemical sensitivity, who’s dependent on government assistance, prepare to move? How does a disabled person with acute chemical sensitivity secure and install a whole house water filtration system so she can bathe and wash clothes properly (not just for everyday health but also in preparation for a move); secure safe clothing and a washing machine in the first place (there is a reason why she’s naked in the photo, she only has about five articles of safe, uncontaminated clothing to her name); conduct a housing search and then properly prepare that house for an uber sensitive person? How does she do that? And if she can’t do it herself, how does she find a knowledgeable advocate to help navigate the entire process?
Link to read the entire article :  http://www.thecanaryreport.org/2010/04/13/lindasepp/
Many of us live on the edge, our precious ledge of safety tetters for any number of reasons, our world of stabilty fragile.  MCS is to a great degree a 'preventable' condition, contingent upon human decisions to step away from choices that do great harm.  My heart goes out to our friend Linda in Toronto.  My energy to continue is a store based on one day's parcel of energy at a time; and yet, I too slip into fear and I lose hold on the courage to dare to believe in something wonderful being in the flow.

How do you envision new beginnings for this New Moon?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

If there is any doubt

"No wound does heal, but by degrees"
I am ever humbled by the quick change in the direct and pace of life.  It speeds up as one ages -- the pace that is.  Even though from the outside the eyes of youth might see my life as something less than rapid, time passes so differently today than when I was half this age. 

Since my last post I have been engaged in the work of attending to life, recouping and regaining equilibrium.  To update and also to chronicle (for myself, because without it I forget my successes) this very special heroic journey of R & R here I am at the keys and in the basement to make these notes.  For if there is any doubt that there is courage working through us this may help to bring it front and center.

Here is what we have done in the last days since posting:

1.  Continued to heal and mend a fracture to my arm and elbow. 
There is very little pain now, I am conscious of the daily ease with which I can use my dear old right arm.  I spend time soothing her my very used and recently injured dominant arm and hand.  The sesame seed milk has done its job of aiding in the rebuilding of calcium where needed.  Gentle massage and attention to how I use this right arm brings me back to mindfulness.  How much I do take bodily function for granted.

2.  I can do more cooking and have begun to drive again.
When I am unable to do the daily bits, Pete must take them on.  His is already a loaded share, so the increase is more than enough.  He does it and all else.  I feel guilty for it and on the best of days, I am able to forgive myself the weigh of guilt and it pases. 

3.  Pete is involved with this community in ways he has wished, and that gives us more diversity.
The community garden patch is growing nicely with Pete's help and the help of neighborhood folks who contribute their skills and their time.  It's a resourceful group there in Lowell by the river; I'm grateful Pete has that outlet and we have a garden planted with peas, onions, carrots and beets so far.

4.  The Canary Caravan Carnival is in the making.
Bloggers and allies have thrown their hats into our 3 ring circus as the May MCS Awareness Event here at VardoForTwo is planted.  There's still plenty of time to join in.  Consider contributing and being part of the sharing on May 14,15 and 16th.

5.  Pollen season is in full bloom here.
Last Friday I joined our friends for a dinner (a very big thing for us with MCS at this level of severity).  It takes a lot of effort to be vigilant about the exposures when I am with 'others'.  I made a choice to take myself inside the house for a Friday night dinner with 7 friends.  There were precautions made to get me to the table:  the gas stove and oven were used for dinner so the room was aired before I came in.  Usually I try for 15 minutes inside as my limit.  I stuck to that.  I made it through a dinner.  Sat at the table in a 'proper chair' and chatted while I ate fresh-caught salmon and potato dinner across from three friends.  That is a huge thing!  I asked for an open window to blow fresh air in ... that is usually a good thing.  Friday night that proved to be the wrong decision.  A bank of broad leaf maples and a lilac bush are in full pollination or just about to bloom and that combined with the contruction site next door combined to set out allergies and reactivity. 

I have been recovering from the episode using all method of R & R including NAET treatments, saline solution nasal rinses, Lomi lomi treatments, high levels of Vitamin C, increased drinking of fresh young coconut water, cleaning the vardo and basement(thank you Pete) of dusts and pollens, 18 hours of watching the Brit film series "The House of Elliot", asking our friend Doug to cut the lilac blooms and stowing them away to take to work and finally yesterday I ordered a tank of oxygen to have as needed. 

6.  This morning, I am back to the basement for the first sit down at the keys since Thursday, and the chronicle is laid down.  Doing whatever it takes to take the next breath, and make my way through the relationships that I have with people is a full-time job.  If there is any doubt life is full, I have only to look again at the words strung together here or look at the reality of life's character etched in my face, the face of my dear Pete.  Getting through the rough times of getting through an exposure is process ... messy and progressive.  I hope my healing is building on a foundation that needed reinforcing and humility may be my reward for learning compromise and cooperation. 

Is compromise and cooperation easy for you; are you good at it?  

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Kolea Nani

Kolea Nani ... beautiful golden plover
Thank you CKB for the lovely photo!

Back on O'ahu, the beautiful Kolea our adopted totem bird-'aumakua is very busy eating to plump itself for the trans-Pacific flight to the Alaska tundra.

Eat well sweet bird
Fly safe
Make the journey that reminds me
Earth is home ... here & there

Link here to read a bit more about the beautiful Kolea, Pacific Golden Plover
and listen to its sweet song, too.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

CANARY CARAVAN CARNIVAL ... the excitement builds

MAY, 2010 is MCS Awareness Month on The Planet and an excellent time for Canaries to spread the word about Multiple Chemical Sensitivites.  Events and activities are in the works, and here at VARDOFORTWO we are planing to gather and celebrate the grand and the mini-step successes of a life lived well.  For three days--FRIDAY, May 14, SATURDAY, May 15 and SUNDAY, May 16, bloggers will circle the wagons and bring their TOOLS, ALLIES and PROSE to the first three ring circus of hope, innovation and inspiration for those of us who live, thrive and learn from the experiences of Multiple Chemical Sensitivities.

I'm so excited by the wonderful positive response I'm getting from the 'ohana of canaries who want to be part of the whoopa!  So far these friends are adding their ika (energy) to the excitement:

Mary and Keith who author Mary and Keith's Excellent Adventure!
Susie Collins from The Canary Report
Liberty from Moving Beyond MCS
Julie Genser from Planet Thrive

I have emails of invitation ready to send to other MCS friends, and allies of MCSers who bring insight, joy and positive energy to the Canary Caravan Carnival.  Since my last post about the Carnival, my brain has been storming (in a good way!) with topics for our three ring circus and storytelling jamboree.  So far, it looks like these are the three basic categories for blog posts/articles/activities.  Like a good TAP DANCE, we'll fill the Canary Caravan Carnival with our brands of cavorting.

The three rings or circles at the Canary Caravan Carnival of storytelling and sharings will offer:
Tfor Tools, totems and tangents

Toot your hoot with the tools that make your life with Multiple Chemical Sensitivities a life-in-progress.  Tell your stories about the totems -- images, charms and sign-posts that tether you to your strength and serve as affirmation to the unique being you are.  Tangents are the unexpected and often unplanned paths or off-shoots of a life planned; places and experiences that spontaneously happen because we are human and because MCS might have had something to add to the old 'normal.'

Are there tools, totems and tangents that make a difference in your everyday, or perhaps showed up at the perfect time along the way?

A for Allies, angels and angles

We are in this space ship together!  No doubt, that there are times in each of our individual lives where we are lonely, and more often than we'd care to believe, MCS can become an isolating reality.  Through the vessel of cyberspace -- the internet and blogging, the connection with Allies we could not have imagined become part of our net of belonging.  Personal and collective angels come into our lives and a new and unplanned angle appears as many of us connect to the vast universe, the stairway to the nurturing celestial bodies or the sound of nature that persists inspite of the odds.

Share the allies, angels and unsuspecting angles that support you in your journey. 

Pfor Prose, poems and prayers

Canaries, those of us who have included all manner of masks to shield or filter the toxic effects of others' choices also find creative expressions to make sense of life with change.  The mask can also be an incredibly vibrant and beautiful second-skin or other face that says something grand/potent/humorous/gut-wrenching about our experiences at the moment.  Story in prose, poems and prayers have long been a way for the human being to connect and communicate with the god/goddess/higher power within. 

The Canary Caravan Carnival offers a circle for the stories that you have found, written or created to connect with that power that is ever present. 

If you would like to contribute and make a submission to the Carnival, please leave a comment in the Comments or email me with your idea/submission:  ssvardo@gmail.com  Let me know which category you'd like to be apart of, too.

More details and a deadline for submissions will be posted as the days and nights roll.  There's still plenty of time to join in, so please feel welcome to add your uniqueness to the activities.  Help me fill in the white space, and be unafraid to color outside the lines (ahhh...there are no lines!)

Let our canary roars be heard!


Clipart credits go to  http://www.designedtoat.com/  for all the graphics, save for the canaries

Saturday, April 3, 2010


The three days and nights of the 'Ole Cycle (the 21st-23rd nights of the Moon)... the reflective, review and inventory, weeding time attending to what has been planted in thought, word and action since the previous times of 'Ole (the 7th-10th nights of the moon)... begins tomorrow, Sunday, April 4th.  Our practice here at VardoForTwo is to refrain from new posts and new projects.  There is always plenty to review, readjust and consider during the 'Ole Cycle as Mahina (the Moon) wanes into the New Moon.

Zodiacarts a wonderful site created on the Northshore of my beloved O'ahu in the Hawaiian Islands publishes a wonderful monthly Moon Calendar that I have come to consult regularly.  You might like to see what Mahina will be doing during the month of April.  Click here to pull that April Moon Calendar up.

Until next time,
Aloha ... Mokihana and Pete

P.S. Tomorrow (whoops, that would be Monday and not tomorrow, Sunday) we celebrate our 1 year anniversary of life from the tiny home/sleeping loft VardoForTwo.  What a year it has been~

One year ago on Vardo For Two the wheelie home was mobile  LINK to April 4, 2009

And another link:  Oldtime fabulous rockers singing "End of the Line" ... what a time!

Friday, April 2, 2010

'OLENA Easter Eggs ... shades of yellow for a gentler color

We got a sweet Easter card from my son yesterday...got me thinking about the years of Easter baskets I would fill for him when he was a kiddo.  He is an only child, and when I think about the simple hiding hunt-for-the Easter egg things we did for him I wonder and then I remember how fast life really is moving at this age and smile at the card he sends to us who forget what day it is on a regular basis.

This morning as we puttering in the basement I told Pete "We'll need to dye a dozen eggs for Easter."  He turned in my direction but I dare say I heard no comment to the suggestion.  A dozen eggs would sit a long time in our tiny frig but maybe if we had a little fun project to make 'OLENA (turmeric) colored eggs there would be a something to do. 

I found this link to using turmeric over at The Canary Report, part of an article about "PREPARING FOR MCS AWARENESS MONTH."  Yellow is for Canaries ... us who live with MCS as kin to the yellow feathered song birds.  I love the idea of using 'olena, a spice and a root I have used for making preparations for ear aches.  (Squeeze a small nib of fresh 'olena root with a garlic press, into a shallow, small dish.  Add a tiny amount of olive oil/or oil you know you are tolerant of.  Mix the 'olena juice with the oil to blend.  Use a clean glass dropper and suck up the mixture ... it may be thick, that's okay.  Lie with head on a pillow with a cloth that can be washed ... 'olena will color whatever it touches (which is great if you don't mind).  Drop one or two drops of the 'olena oil into one ear, and then the other.  Dap up the drips that will come from your ear and keep a cotton ball bit to cover if you're able to tolerate the cotton.

Here's that link for using turmeric to color hard-boiled eggs.  I think I'd do that this weekend for a fun thing to entertain my dear self. 

Have you used other spices or gentle to you egg dyes?

Thursday, April 1, 2010

The Canaries Caravan ... a BLOGGERS CARNIVAL to Celebrate MAY MCS Awareness Month

May is MCS AWARENESS Month throughout the globe.  Susie Collins and the community of canaries at The Canary Report have been chirping and organizing for months in preparation for MCS AWARENESS Month.  For our regular readers, the journey of these two old dears as we learn to ID the realities of environmentally triggered illness is what weaves in and out of the stories, posts and links we put here at VardoForTwo.  Over the while those who come to this blog place become witness to the multiple schemes of experiences a being has as the illness and the conditions affect who we have been; and the core of our humanness morphs, uncovers or becomes more and more who we are ... new, different, unexpected, triumphant, shattered, debilitated, recreated.  All or none of these might suit on any one day, at any one moment.

Today is April 1st ... APRIL FOOLS DAY.  A perfect time to announce a sort of bloggers' carnival.  It would be fun and empowering to use that month of may to give voice to the very well and very resilient force of human power alive in the examples of women, men and children who live with MCS.  I'm inspired by the wonderful Astrology Carnival that my cyberpals CJ Wright and Donna Cunningham concocted to celebrate National Astrology Day.  No fool'n!

Here's the idea ...

  • Friday, May 14, Saturday, May 15 and Sunday, May 16 are CANARY CARAVAN Days it's a time to circle the wagons and come to tell our stories.  We who live with the affects of Multiple Chemical Sensitivities are as similar and different as the shades of yellow, or the hues of the color blue; there are so many shades of yellow or blue (or green or purple) and what we know comes from who we are at the core.  Posts by bloggers with links or related articles will appear on VardoForTwo on these three days.  Written to inspire and offer space for the incredibly rich and creative expressions of our lives I hope to circle the wagons for a time of collective strength.

  • I will be chatting behind the scenes with my blogger friends who live and thrive with the realities of a life affected by MCS, hoping to enlist the help of two other bloggers who will also post CANARY CARAVAN stories on their blogs.  Even as I write this to the page, all is not firmly in place so if you have ideas or thoughts please leave me comments or email me at ssvardo@gmail.com.  This is a totally new project for me so please join in.

  • There may be categories of stories over the three days of CANARY CARAVAN.  I'm thinking:
  1. Poetry and Prose:  Words and images poems, a photo essay or short story that reflect your life with MCS
  2. Tools and Practices:  Stories about the medical, physical, emotional and spiritual supportive practices that aid and create foundations for an evolving life

What other categories would you like to see at the CANARY CARAVAN?

We have six weeks to put together some really fun and inspiring blogging that can educate, infuse and make a difference.  If you're interested or curious let me know in the comments or email.


Gypsy Caravans Photo Credit: