Love and Devotion Look Like This

“Rather than remain a sealed jar, she sought only to pour herself out to others. Everything she did mirrored her faith. It was as though every waking hour of the day she was devoted to pleasing her God by serving others. This God that she worshiped consumed her. It didn’t ask for a brief visit to a temple, or a small votive offering of food or coin, or a few prayers every now and then. This God wanted all of her.” 
~  Francine Rivers

 

I don’t prepare for retreats the way that many other people do.

My priorities are different.

I am not thinking about funnels, or marketing, or what my hook is. I’m not calculating break-evens or what to sell you next.

No.

I am thinking about your soul. I am creating and holding space for you. I am placing you on a mala that I make with my own hands – choosing a bead for you, on which I will pray and meditate twice a day. I am choosing and preparing crystals for you, cleansing them and channelling their purpose and energies. I walk our rural property, creating grids of stones among the trees, or choosing stones from previous grids, some of them from years ago, but whose energies are important for the work we will do together. I am ensuring that your tools will best support you and your growth. I am honouring your spiritual journey. I am preparing the materials. I am crafting your experience. I am devoting myself to the journey, and to taking you with me to a place of transformation.

There are endless hours spent in this crafting, before we even come together. During our retreat I am yours. I pour myself entirely into the process. And I continue to do so once our event is over and you are navigating your way back into the wider world again. It is an honour and a great responsibility to be entrusted with your care.

Long after we part I will still be praying and meditating for you, sending you energy, wishing you well, night-flying to visit you and keep company a while.

I can’t do it any other way. I must give my whole self to this.

This is what it is to follow your heart, to follow a calling, to live with devotion.

I’m so grateful for this life,

Nicole  xoxo

My Kind of Happiness – Mystical Crystals

 

“Live what you love and what you love will fill your life.” 
~  Jodi Livon

Many years ago when I lived in the Kimberley – that wild outback corner of remote Western Australia – my Aboriginal Aunties showed me how to make stones sing, and how to infuse them with the energies of plants and places.

I’ve put that knowledge to good use this past few months as I have prepared crystals for my final two retreats of the year.

Yesterday I walked our farm here in Byron Bay, digging up crystals that have sat beneath trees and significant plants as the sun and moon have transitted overhead for many months. The crystals are all natural beauties, and now they hold qualities beyond their original energies – just like my students will soon, when we have finished our retreat together.

Today’s task is to write in each journal I will gift my students, adding a photograph of the plant under which their stones have come into their additional qualities, and an explanation of what those energies are.

It’s a labour of love that will take many hours, but I have ample tea and my little farmhouse has been transformed into a workstation for stones and books and bags and other gifts and tools we shall use together on this next retreat, which begins on Saturday.

There are many other things in store for my participants, but I shan’t disclose them here because I don’t want to ruin the surprises! This retreat is my Temple of Light – a shamanic guided meditation retreat, and one of my favourite and most transformative meditation techniques ever.

Our final retreat will be in Byron Bay, Australia, from Saturday 25 November to Friday 1 December – a delicious week of Working With Crystals, where I’ll be teaching you how to connect, heal, create, infuse, grid, program, meditate and make magic with crystals. This is the first time I will have shared most of this information. I’ll be teaching the sorts of things you can’t learn from books, the sorts of things that have been passed to me by other Elders, and of course my Aunties. It’s a very Soul Sanctuary affair, this final retreat of the year, full of learning but also of rest and rejuvenation energies. So there will also be time for beach swims and little adventures in Byron Bay and some pool time in our bright summer sun. And yes, it’s suitable for total beginners as well as advanced practitioners.

Perhaps you’d like to join us? If so, please email my wonderful PA, Dana, at nicolecodyinfo@gmail.com

We’re in the final madness that is retreat prep right now, so Dana won’t be able to send you information until early next week, but we know this final retreat for 2017 – like all my retreats – will fill up very fast, and we will send information to our list in the order we have received it – ie first come, first served.

Meanwhile, I must get back to my stones and journal work.

Sending love and blessings to you all, Nicole  xx

 

Easy Puff Pastry Quiche

“Lunch makes me feel a bit better.” 
~  Suzanne Collins

 

Recently my friend Carly and I popped in to her parents’ house for lunch, and then a tour of her mum’s garden. Jewel made a lovely salad with fresh greens from her vegetable patch, and I took over a simple quiche that I’d whipped up from bits and pieces I had on hand.

(I also took a slab of my favourite fruit cake for us to have with a cup of tea. Rosco, Carly’s dad is a big fruitcake fan!)

Many years ago, when I was a college student, I worked in my holidays as a shearers’ cook on big outback sheep stations. The shearers and shed hands were mad for my quiche, but I didn’t dare call it that – far too fancy a name for them! Instead I called it Bacon and Egg Pie and they’d eat it with lashings of tomato sauce and not a lettuce leaf in sight.

This is a simple meal to throw together, and the puff pastry makes for a yummy texture combination with the silky egg filling.

Serve it warm or cold. It is also great for lunchboxes, will freeze well, or keeps in the fridge for three days.

You can also vary the filling to make this vegetarian, or to use up whatever is in your fridge.

I used a 24cm springform pan to cook my quiche, but you can use any dish that suits your fancy. Just make sure the sides are high enough to contain your filling.

Ingredients:

  • 2 sheets of puff pastry or enough to line your serving dish
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 cup of cream
  • 1 onion, diced and sauted in a little oil until soft but not brown
  • 1/2 to 1 cup of diced ham
  • 1/2 cup of diced swiss cheese (if you’re cheese mad use a little more)
  • 1/2 to 1 cup of thinly sliced zucchini
  • a handful of grated tasty cheese or parmesan for the top of your quiche
  • salt and pepper
  • a little oil or butter

Want to make this vegetarian? Omit the ham and use a cup of other vegetables of your choice. Capsicum (bell pepper) and broccoli are favourites of mine. Once you’ve made this quiche a few times you’ll be confident to change out the ingredients to make all kinds of flavour combinations.

Method:

Preheat your oven to 200 degrees celcius.

Rub a little oil or butter around the inside of your pie dish and then line it with the pastry making sure. It’s okay to cut pieces to fit. Just overlap them a little and then press them together well. Also make sure that the pastry goes high enough up the sides of your dish. (It’s even okay if it sticks over the top a little. Rustic is good too. Mine’s rustic because I only just had enough pastry to cover the dish roughly.) Then prick the pastry base all over with the tines of a fork.

Now use baking paper to line the inside of the pan, and add some pastry weights. I actually use uncooked brown rice. You could even use dry beans. This is called baking blind, and you do this to enable the base of the pastry to be firm instead of soggy.

Bake the pastry for 10 to 15 minutes and then remove from oven. Drop the temperature of your oven back down to 180 degrees or 170 degrees for fan-forced. Leave your pastry shell to cool for ten minutes and then carefully remove the paper and weights. Replace the shell back in the oven for a further 10 minutes or until the base is golden brown. (Don’t panic if it puffs up. The weight of your filling will sink it back down again.)

 

Prepare the filling for your quiche while your pie crust is in oven:

  1. Dice your onion and then saute the onion in a frypan until pale, soft and slightly coloured but not brown.
  2. Chop your cheese and ham into small cubes.
  3. Slice your zucchini or any other vegetables you are using.
  4. Break the eggs into a bowl, add the cream and beat together with a fork. Add salt and pepper and mix again.

To finish the quiche add the softened onion to the bottom of the pie. Then sprinkle the cheese and ham into the dish. Pout the egg mixture over and then add the zucchini slices to the top of the egg. Sprinkle a handful of grated cheese on top and return quiche to the oven. Bake for thirty minutes or until quiche is lightly coloured and firm to touch.

Serve on its own or with a crisp salad.

Here’s the process in pictures:

Feeling Tired Or A Bit Emotionally Wobbly?

“Where there is ruin, there is hope for a treasure.” 
~  Jalaluddin Rumi

 

How are you feeling, lovelies? Are you travelling okay?

It’s rather a fierce week, this week. And so was the week we’ve just had. Lots of solar flares, and a few polar shifts thrown in.

All this astrological and ecological phenomena can be quite disturbing for sensitive and empathic people. What makes us sensitive – that ability to feel and sense energies and information that might not be so readily apparent to others – is also the thing that can make us more vulnerable to influence by the energetic shifts and changes of our solar system.

We may experience a sudden draining of our energy, feel heavy and fatigued, or ache as though we are coming down with the flu. We may find that we feel depressed or anxious for no reason, or that our sleep patterns are disrupted. We may feel unbalanced, not quite in our body, suffer from headaches or fuzzy thinking, or be irrational, teary, angry or upset – once again with no apparent cause.  We may become highly over-sensitive – to foods, people, weather, noise and light. We might decide that our ideas suck, that we suck, that the whole situation sucks…

But lovelies, it’s a phase and that phase will pass. Right now the solar flares are making the earth’s crust charged with positive ions rather than the usual negative ones. That makes it hard for us to ground. We become like sleep-deprived toddlers, incapable of clear thought or reason as all of the positive charged ions we naturally build up in us by thinking, living and interacting with computers and electrical devices suddenly has no good way to clear our system.

There are several practical things you can do to ride out the energies of this week (which finish up in the early hours of Friday – thank goodness!):

  • standing or soaking in water will help – so think baths or foot soaks with a handful of sea salt or epsom salts, or a swim or paddle in the closest river, ocean or lake.
  • staying well hydrated, especially with electrolytes
  • using magnesium orally or topically
  • good crystals to wear or carry include hematite, red jasper and black tourmaline
  • for emotional distress use carnelian and moonstone
  • eat lots of grounding root vegetables, such as potato, onions, garlic, radish, sweet potato, carrots, beetroot, turnips and parsnips
  • set clear boundaries and avoid situations and people who tax or distress you
  • essential oils will also help; geranium for emotional comfort and clarity, frankincense for energetic connection and to stabilise your intuitive abilities and sensitivities, lavender as a soother for frazzlement – I also love Young Living’s Peace and Calming blend at times like these, to ease me into sleep and keep me rested
  • avoiding an excess of sugar and caffeine

This image by www.eatingbyelaine.com – go check out her page – lots of yumminess there!

The good news? It’s a powerful week for honouring our instincts and getting clear about what matters to us. This week trust your instincts and let them guide you – above using your mind (which may be fried!) or your intuition (which is a combination of heart and mind – cos mind fried!). You’ll find that living instinctively brings you great clarity and direction. In fact, if you tap into your instinctive energy this week you’ll find that you can reach those breakthroughs that you’ve been seeking and not finding using all your other usual methods.

Not sure how to use your instincts to navigate life? I covered it all in yesterday’s blog.

 

Above all, be kind to yourself this week. Live gently and sustainably if you are feeling a little wobbly, and know that this will pass. It’s not you. You’re not going crazy. You’re just a sensitive soul – which is a GOOD thing. You can do this, and the benefits of tuning in instinctively will help you to truly understand yourself and what best serves you and your life path.

Sending so much love your way,

Nicole ❤ xx

Trust Your Gut Instinct! – Monday Oracle September 18 2017

I have been and still am a seeker, but I have ceased to question stars and books; I have begun to listen to the teaching my blood whispers to me.
~ Hermann Hesse

Hello, Lovelies!

If you read my forecast for September, you’ll know that it’s a month of possibility and expansive energy, of change and curiosity, and of starting small projects that may take a long time, but that we care about deeply. Keep that in mind as we look at the gifts which the oracle card Instinct brings us.

So, what awareness does Instinct bring us this week?

Inside us is our essence. It’s who we are. It’s what gives us our personality and true nature. It’s our skills and talents and preferences. No matter how lost we may have become to ourselves or to our art this week our instincts kick in strongly, helping us to reconnect to or rediscover this deep truth within us.

Instinct is an inner compass that can tune us back in to our best direction. All we need to do is get quiet, and then tune in to our feelings of curiosity and relief. If we keep moving towards what engages us, and away from does not, we’ll soon find our way again.

Need to make a decision? Instinct will help you choose well this week.

Gut instinct or feeling is a primal response hard-wired into every human.  It’s not a mind-based wisdom. It doesn’t come from your heart. Gut feeling really does come from that area of your body – your abdomen.

So how do we tune in to our instinct this week?  It’s easier than you think. Gut instinct does not use words or images.  Gut instinct uses emotions, and rockets along our central nervous system which can also produce physical reactions.  It operates in 3 modes – neutral, forward and reverse. I’m sure you’ve all felt it and are familiar with it, whether you honour it or not.

In ‘forward’, we literally feel that we want to move closer to something.  We feel good about it.  We feel excited, happy and positive.  We can’t explain why, we can’t find the words for it, but we KNOW that something will work, that the person is good or honest, that this situation will be for the best, that this job/car/person/product/idea/food is the right choice.

In ‘neutral’ we feel indifference. There is no strong emotion or physical reaction either way.

In ‘reverse’ our gut is telling us to back away.  We feel unsure or uncomfortable.  The warning bells go off.  If it’s a mild response, this is where our brain often kicks in and invalidates our emotion (that can happen in ‘forward’ situations too!) by persuading our logical mind with rational thoughts and justifications.  In a strong response we may feel anxious or ill, we want to move back from this job/person/situation, we want to get to safety or a neutral space.  We can’t say why but we KNOW this won’t work well, this person can’t be trusted, something is wrong, it’s going to end badly…

This basic instinct is like a muscle – the more we use it, the stronger it becomes.  If we learn to trust it with the smaller things, eventually we’ll be able to hear and honour it with the bigger things. 

This week Instinct helps us find clarity about many important areas in our lives, restores lots parts of ourselves, and gets us moving in the right direction again.

Supportive crystals this week?

Sodalite will help you to speak your truth and ask for what you need. Clear Quartz amplifies your intuition and your ability to tune in to Universal and Personal Wisdom. Rose Quartz is a stone of love and nurture – the crystal world equivalent of a great big reassuring hug, a soothing cup of tea and a best friend to hold your hand through life’s decisions and challenges. 

Helpful essential oils?

Each of the following oils will work beautifully on their own for you this week, but they also make a delicious combination for diffusing. Frankincense elevates our mood and promotes spiritual connection and intuition, Lavender keeps us in flow and relaxed,  Ylang Ylang opens our hearts and is supportive when we feel anxious or overwhelmed, and Orange for joy, gratitude and optimism. To diffuse add 2 or three drops of each oil to your room or personal diffuser. You can find the oils here.

Image from www.wallpaperstock.net

Holding you, as always, in my thoughts, prayers and meditations, and intending for a you a life of abundance and joy, where you are no longer limited by your doubts.

All my love,

Nicole ❤ xx

PS: Monday’s oracle card, ‘Instinct’, is from the Chakra Wisdom Oracle Deck by Tori Hartman. I use any cards shown as a prompt for channelled messages and my own intuitive wisdom, so my take is sometimes quite different to the meaning found in a book. 

 

Music For Dinner

“Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent” 
~  Victor Hugo

 

Last night we were so churned. We couldn’t eat. We couldn’t sleep. After a while we turned off the lights and lay in the dark, side by side, dogs snuggled up beside us, and we played music until our hearts were full.

All the feelings we couldn’t put into words floated up and out of us, carried away on the voices of artists and instruments.

Something happened there in the dark, as the music wrapped around us. All the worry emptied out. Peace came.

And then we slept.

Before the madness, tea…

“If you are cold, tea will warm you;
if you are too heated, it will cool you;
If you are depressed, it will cheer you;
If you are excited, it will calm you.” 
~  William Ewart Gladstone

 

In the middle of all of this editing and birthday excitement we’ve also been dealing with madness of another kind this last little while.

Ben’s elderly mum, a staunchly independent woman in her early nineties, is needing more and more help to stay in her home. Which is where she wants to stay!

The family has rallied around; bringing her food, taking her to doctors’ appointments, paying bills and managing her household, proving company and care. But things are changing quickly. Suddenly I feel like I need to check in on her every day. Will she remember to take her medication? Is she eating? Is she safe? Is she okay emotionally?

It’s a place many families suddenly find themselves in.

And we live far away for most of each month, although we’ve radically modified that recently to be able to keep a better eye on her.

This morning I’m sitting with a cup of tea, thinking about what to do next, and how best to support my mother-in-law. It’s comforting to know that all of her family are thinking about that too, and we’ll find a way, together, to navigate this next stage of her life, but it’s a sad and worrying time.

Meanwhile, my Melbourne Breakfast Tea hasn’t quite fixed everything, but my goodness it helps.

Sending much love to you and your families, Nicole  xoxo