All Things Alchemical: Finding Treasure and Inspiration in Your Life
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All Things Alchemical is the monthly E-newsletter of personal transformation for those seeking grace and clarity. Enjoy discoveries centered on health, spirit, purpose, archetypes, symbology and artistic expression that will guide you dancing through life.

Note From Kendra


Dear Friends,


At this time of year, we come together to reflect upon all that we are grateful for in community of family and friends as we celebrate the feast of Thanksgiving. 
In this issue of All Things Alchemical we focus on bringing you something you can share with young and old in Inspiration: Kid President giving us 20 things we should say more often.
In Health we are making it easy to shop for your feast day with the mindfulness of spreading the good vibe of whole, clean, healthy foods. The ‘Clean 15’ and the ‘Dirty Dozen’ put out by the Environmental Working Group in April is part of a phenomenal article: “EWG’s 2014 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce.”
I hope you will make time this month to check out My Favorites where we have included a few family-friendly items for you to read or watch. My personal favorite is our movie choice staring Adam Levine, Mark Ruffalo, and Keira Knightley.
May you be truly blessed by the gifts of the season of Thanksgiving as I feel blessed to be walking this journey with you. In gratitude.

As we express our
we must never
forget that the
highest appreciation
is not to
utter words, but
to live
by them.
-John F. Kennedy

Peace and with love,




The positive aspects of this archetype are fairly obvious: spiritual intensity, devotion, dedication, persistence, and perhaps wisdom. On the shadow side, the role of a religious recluse could be seen as being removed from the real world, overly pious, even privileged in the sense of not having to be concerned about earning a living or raising a family. Yet, historically, monks have been extremely industrious and involved in real-world enterprises, whether draining swamps and planting vineyards in medieval Europe, working the rice fields in Asia, building monasteries, teaching, or copying and preserving texts. Today the Monk archetype may show up in the ability to be single-minded, assiduous, devoted to a spiritual path or to any great achievement that requires intense focus. In this sense, novelists and entrepreneurs can carry the Monk as readily as spiritual adepts.
The Celibate reserves his or her energy for work and/or spiritual practice. Yet one can be a Monk, even a religious one, without being celibate, as is the case with some Tibetan lamas, yogis, and Islamic scholars. Then there were Abélard and Heloïse, the twelfth-century Monk and Nun who forsook their vows of celibacy out of passion for each other. Both were superior in their fields-Abélard as lecturer, debater, and philosopher, Heloïse as a radical prioress and founder of convents-and, although their passion caused them great suffering, it does not seem to have hurt their spiritual work.
Films: Claude Laydu in Diary of a Country Priest; Audrey Hepburn in The Nun’s Story; Yi Pan-Yong in Why Has Bodhi-Dharma Left For the East?; Deborah Kerr in Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison; Loretta Young in Come to the Stable; Lilia Skala in Lilies of the Field.  
Television: Derek Jacobi in Brother Cadfael.  
Fiction: The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco.
Religion/Myth: Friar Tuck (the mythical swordfighting monk of Robin Hood’s Merry Men); Nennius (Welsh monk commonly believed to have compiled the Historia Brittonum, which was used by Geoffrey of Monmouth and others to reconstruct the history of King Arthur); Bernadette Soubiros (nineteenth- century French girl who at the age of fourteen claimed visions of the Virgin Mary).


Myss, Caroline.  Sacred Contracts: Awakening Your Divine Potential.  New York: Three Rivers Press, 2002, 2003. 400-401. Print.


Contributed by Anne Barton

As is often the case for me, the path to choosing an animal to share this month was a meandering one.  The obvious choice in the month of November is Turkey, which is why I wrote about this animal last year.  When I started to consider other possibilities, the keyword Gathering popped out at me.  This seemed a very appropriate word for a month when we celebrate and give thanks surrounded by family, friends, and loved ones.  Even though its meant in a different way when associated with Squirrel, it was a start.  What clinched it for me was suddenly recalling an encounter I just had a week ago with a squirrel, and I was with Kendra.  We were walking through a park, cutting through a grove of trees to get to our destination, and a squirrel crossed our path.  My usual encounters with squirrels are fleeting.  They take off up a tree fast when I approach.  But Kendra tried a different approach.  She leaned down and looked at the squirrel, and he walked right up to her and stood on his hind legs not even a foot away.  If shed had something to eat, I think he would have taken it right from her hand.  Instead, when he realized she didnt have anything to offer, he promptly turned around and left. Thats what I call a significant animal encounter!  It reminded me of a book I read years ago on Animal Communication.  The author literally had conversations with animals, and once she was stopped in her tracks walking down the street when she heard a voice say, Hey Lady, got any nuts?  A squirrel in the tree above was talking to her.  She stopped and decided to have a conversation but quickly found that it was going to be a very singularly focused one.  Nuts?  That was the one and only topic this squirrel was interested in! (Straight from the Horses Mouth by Amelia Kincade)
Susie Green, in her book Animal Wisdom describes a couple of ways to communicate or engage with animals. One suggestion is to concentrate on just one animal for a period of time, observing and taking notes on its behavior and activity.  Consider why the animal does what it does.  You can start to create a journal that presents the meaning of your encounters with this animal.  Or, has this animal appeared in your dreams?  What was it doing?  She actually gives an example of seeing one squirrel chasing another, up and down a tree or across a field.  This could be interpreted in a number of ways - fighting, aggression - but in fact its a mating ritual.  Lets say you observe this behavior and you are considering asking someone out on a date.  This might be a clue to encourage you in this endeavor.
Another way to interact and receive a message from an animal is to notice repeating behavior, something a particular animal does each time you encounter it over a period of time.  Every time I sit on a bench in a park I walk to often, a hummingbird comes and sits on a tree behind me and squeaks.  Until I first encountered this behavior several years ago, Id never seen a hummingbird sit still on a tree branch, and I didnt know they make a noise other than the humming of those rapidly flapping wings.  The keyword for Hummingbird is joy, and her presence reminds me to live with an open heart.  That is a message that never grows old!
 SQUIRREL/Gathering, Investment in the Future, Change
Key points when Squirrel is present:

  • Honor your future by readying for change.
  • Lighten your load, if necessary, of "things" not of service.
  • Place wisdom and caring in an untroubled heart and mind.
  • Remember, the Universe provides.

This is the Boy Scout of animals - always prepared!

Reserve for the future, but know that all will be taken care of in its own time. 
Squirrel can be found on all continents except Australia.  This is not an elusive animal but one well known to mankind.  Squirrel is making sure to share its message with us all: that is, the importance of preparing for the future.  Energetic and acrobatic, squirrel advises that we take care of our physical being, so as to be prepared when change occurs.  It takes extra energy to manage change; so we need to ‘be prepared’ like the Boy Scout of the animal kingdom.
More specifically, squirrel would have us master the simple skills of life - growing our own food and cooking and preserving food to prepare for changing times.  These are skills that are being lost in the busy, metropolitan world in which we live.  But preparing does not mean hoarding.  Carrying and accumulating too much weighs us down and depletes our energy.  The message of squirrel is to be light and adaptable in order to easily meet the future but also enjoy the now.  And this is not just material ‘heaviness’ but being weighed down by thoughts, worries, pressures, stress and gadgets that have been broken for years.  This ‘medicine’ is also about repurposing or recirculating that which you are ready to let go of.  Find someone who can benefit from anything that is no longer serving you.
Squirrel can appear when you are stuck and stagnant, energizing action.  These questions may help you move forward if you find yourself in a place of fear or waiting for something to happen.
Have I denied my ability to produce enough space for abundance to enter my life?
Have I denied by connection to the Earth Mother, from whom all things flow?
In moving too fast, have I taken on the erratic nature of squirrel without having any focus?
Am I leaking my energy on worry instead of gathering power through being prepared? 
The greatest wisdom Squirrel has to share is that all will be taken care of in its own time.  Apply this to your fears about the future, and they will vanish.

To learn more about my tools, as well as more about me, visit my website here 


Healthy Calling

We are hearing or reading daily about the harmful effects of GMO’s and pesticides. An awakening of the public, demanding its right to know, is fueling the media’s attention to the dangers of the foods we are consuming. Scientists, doctors, politicians, and even heads or former heads of corporations have been monitoring and listening to the facts about the nutrient-lacking food we are being fed in this country. We have been misled for a very long time, and they are starting to speak out and push for truthful labeling practices.
To help your family determine what fruits and vegetables are going to support a healthy lifestyle, read the following article that was posted on November 3rd in the Huffington Post.

Top Dirty Dozen And Clean 15 Foods
Posted: 04/30/2014 4:32 pm EDT           Updated: 05/08/2014 2:59 pm EDT
For the fourth year in a row, apples have topped the list of most pesticide-laden produce in the U.S.
In the Environmental Working Group’s annual Dirty Dozen list, 99 percent of apple samples tested positive for at least one pesticide residue.
The guide ranks 48 popular fruits and vegetables based on an analysis of 32,000 samples tested by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration.
In this year’s report, 65 percent of the samples tested positive for pesticide residues, including one particularly dastardly single grape, which tested positive for 15 pesticides.

Here are the results of this year’s Dirty Dozen and Clean 15 list
here. From donation page, click to continue to the EWS page in the upper right hand corner. 


Kid President's 20 Things We Should Say More Often


My Favorites

Take a peek into a few of my current favorite reads and flims.


Reads: “Finally let go of being stuck in the energy of all the things you don’t have and being grateful for the things you do have and calling that enough and moving forward there” , “ I AM responsible for myself”  - Liz Murray

Phenomenal book Breaking Night, is about persevering and grace. Liz Murray is inspiring. Her story gained so much attention they made it into a movie. So if you are looking for something to do after you fill your tummies with Thanksgiving dinner, get everyone together to watch this magnificent true story of faith and listening to the whisper within.

Read a Book Review here. Or watch an interview with Liz Murray here.  Click here to purchase the book.

"Things happen and you move on...or you don't." -Liz Murray

Film: Begin Again is a favorite of mine available for rental or purchase. 
Great movie to watch with family. Reminds me in some ways of School of Rock. Sweet mix of characters played by big name actors and a lovely rock star! The music was so spectacular I ordered the download of the entire CD. Click here to watch the trailer.


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