Beliefnet
The Queen of My Self

Another book that I cannot praise enough is Red-Robed Priestess  by Elizabeth Cunningham, author of the preceding three books in the acclaimed Maeve Chronicles.

After a life of passion and adventure that has brought her through slavery to the Resurrection garden, through the controversies of the Early Church to a hermit cave in southern Gaul, Maeve, the Celtic Mary Magdalen, returns to the Holy Isles accompanied by Sarah, her daughter with Jesus. Their mission: to find Maeve’s first-born child, stolen from her by the druids more than forty years ago.

Since then, Maeve’s homeland has suffered its own trials—Roman invasion and occupation. The Celtic tribes to the east and south are under direct rule, and the Romans are determined to rout the resistance of the western tribes, resistance fueled by the druids of Mona.

Her long lost daughter turns out to be Boudica, the fierce and charismatic queen of the Iceni tribe. Druid-trained in her youth, Boudica married the Iceni king, hoping to rally him to a rebellion for which he has no stomach. Now estranged from her husband, Boudica keeps the old ways, sustained by her pride in her descent from her father (and Maeve’s!) the late great druid Lovernios.

Seeking to circumvent disaster, Maeve travels back and forth from Iceni country to Mona, from the heart of native resistance to a Roman fort on the western front, steadfast in her conviction: “Love is as strong as death.” In this final volume of the, Maeve confronts a political and emotional complexity that speaks to our times. Her courageous and compassionate witness of an epic tragedy will challenge and comfort all of us who have ever faced intractable circumstances of our own.

I have loved each of Queen Elizabeth’s books, and as always, I was sad when this one ended, especially since it was the last one in the series.

Do your Self a favor and go right now to your computer and buy this book. Buy them all. You will not be sorry.

*****

Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She offers counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity. Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

 

 

 

Winter is a great time to catch up on reading. I have a pile of books by my bed that I want to read, that I intend to read, but am too busy to read.

Well, with only 12 days left in winter, I finally made a breakthrough and opened the gorgeous book Goddess on Earth by Lisa Levart, and there I spent the next few hours total entranced by her amazing visual celebration of the Divine Feminine.

I could not put it down until I finished the whole thing. But that was just the fist reading. I shall be back in its lush pages. And often!

Goddess on Earth is a deeply moving book featuring the portraits and personal statements of over 70 women, bringing contemporary significance to some of history’s most ancient sacred myths.

Through self-identification each women is portrayed as the goddess who most deeply reflects and gives meaning to her life, creating a visual symphony of the wisdom, courage and personal strength of the female spirit.

Photographed over a period of eight years by Queen Lisa, the book creates a powerful interplay between images of contemporary women, reproductions of classical Goddess sculptures and the archetypes they draw upon.

Working with women of all ages and all walks of life, she has captured evocative contemporary interpretations of known and little known goddesses from many countries and cultures including Native American, China, Egypt, Greece, Scandinavia, India, Ireland and Tibet. Collectively, these portraits convey the resonant and multifaceted manifestations of the feminine spirit.

Some examples are:

Starhawk, the feminist spirituality author embodies Maeve, the Celtic goddess of sovereignty and protection.

Jean Shinoda Bolen, M.D. portrays the goddess Kannon, the Japanese Bodhisattva of compassion.

Olympia Dukakis, the magnificent actor, is Innana the powerful  Sumerian Goddess of sexual love, fertility, and warfare.

I can’t imagine a more perfect way to celebrate International Women’s Day.

Enjoy!

*****

Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She offers counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity. Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

 

 

 

I have grown to love winter. It is a time of being home and laying low. A time of making soup and catching up on my ironing. A time of long, indulgent hot baths and slow starting mornings in bed with a cup of tea and a good book.

During February I will be sharing articles about Domestic Queens, Introverted Queens, Privacy Seeking Queens, Self-Loving Queens, and Literary Queens. And as always, I ask you to please share your stories on these themes.

 

Making New Year’s Resolutions You Actually Keep

By Dr. Jennifer Howard  

 

It’s a new year and a fresh beginning! For most of us, it’s a time when we feel compelled to turn over a new leaf and resolve to do things better and different this year. We want to develop new habits and rid ourselves of the unhealthy ones. We want good change, but a whopping 88% of resolutions fail, and most by the end of January!

Why is this? We usually set ourselves up with vague and unrealistic goals that we really aren’t committed to accomplishing. We think we should do things differently, but we don’t really have the resources to follow through with them. With this in mind, why not make resolutions that serve your health and well-being while eliminating the guilt and overwhelm? Here are ten resolutions that will improve your outlook on life over time and are easy to keep! With little effort and no guilt, you’ll see positive changes by the end of the year.

Eat more chocolate. Studies show the consumption of dark chocolate has a positive affect on blood pressure and provides important antioxidants. In addition to health benefits, most of us view chocolate as a delicious and guilty pleasure. Resolve to indulge yourself. See it as your promise rather than a weakness!

Sleep in every day. Ever feel guilty about hitting the snooze button? Make it a new discipline to sleep more! Sleep helps regulate your metabolism, improves mood, mental acuity, appearance and may even help you lose weight if you need to. Simply go to sleep ten minutes earlier every night, and set your alarm ten minutes later every morning. See how you’re feeling at the end of the year!

Lose one pound a month. That’s right, just one pound. Most Americans could benefit from losing weight. It seems doable, even easy to lose a pound a month–1/4 pound a week–with healthful eating and a little more exercise. And at the end of the year you’ll be 12 pounds lighter. You just might exceed this goal and feel great about it, but at the very least you’ll be twelve pounds lighter than today. Of course you can skip this resolution if you don’t have weight to lose, or modify it to suit your needs.

Drink more (water, that is.) Sometimes we forget to hydrate. It helps with weight loss, it makes our skin glow, it helps flush toxins from our system, eases digestion and may even lower the risk of certain cancers. Start with a cup of water in the morning when you get up. Add a squeeze of lemon if you wish.

Finish something. Anything. Do you have a lot of unfinished projects around the house? A letter or thank you note? A book you’ve been meaning to read? A half-painted bathroom? Pick the smallest and easiest project and finish it. You might even choose a project to finish every weekend. No matter how small or mundane, the act of completion clears the way for new ideas, new actions and new energy in your life!

Save $1 every day. How would you like to be handed a jar containing $365 right now? That’s what you’ll get by simply putting a buck in change or a bill in a bucket, shoebox, or container of choice every day this year. Apply it to Christmas presents, your favorite charity, a facial or weekend away. You’ll feel rich, at least for a day! And you’ll know it really is possible to save money.

Spend 5 minutes entirely alone. This one’s simple. Choose five minutes in your day when you’re alone and relish in your solitude. It can be time in the bathroom, five minutes before rolling out of bed, sitting in your car or on a park bench at lunch. Call it “alone time” and enjoy!

Meditate every day for 3 minutes. Many of us feel like we should meditate more often. We know it reduces stress, helps us connect to our source and benefits our overall health. How about starting with 3 minutes? Combine it with your “alone time” if you want to. Just close your eyes and follow your breath. At the end of the year you’ll have spent 1,080 minutes –that’s 18 hours!–in meditation.

Walk around the block every day. You don’t have to join a gym today or buy any expensive equipment. Just resolve to walk a short distance every day. A quick stroll around the block clears the mind so you can hatch new ideas or solve problems as well as strengthen muscles, improve circulation and encourage weight loss. Combine it with your meditation resolution and call it “alone time” if you want. If you don’t have access to a city block, choose your own destination. Walk to the curve of the road, the length of the parking lot or even to your mailbox.

Keep the resolutions you like, ignore those you don’t enjoy. Life is supposed to be fun! Choose habits that enhance the quality of your life without stress or guilt. No one is keeping score so do what works for you!

*****

Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She offers counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity. Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

 

 

I have grown to love winter. It is a time of being home and laying low. A time of making soup and catching up on my ironing. A time of long, indulgent hot baths and slow starting mornings in bed with a cup of tea and a good book.

During February I will be sharing articles about Domestic Queens, Introverted Queens, Privacy Seeking Queens, Self-Loving Queens, and Literary Queens. And as always, I ask you to please share your stories on these themes.

 

My own best friend

By Amber A. Penrose

As I’ve aged, I’ve become kinder to myself,

and less critical of myself. I’ve become my own best friend.

As you get older, it is easier to be positive.

You care less about what other people think.

I don’t question myself anymore.

I’ve even earned the right to be wrong.

 

So, to answer your question, I like being old.

It has set me free. I like the person I have become.

I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here,

I will not waste time lamenting what could have been,

or worrying about what will be.

And I shall eat dessert every single day (if I feel like it).

*****

Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She offers counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity. Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.