What's in a Name? So much more than I even knew! A year ago I put out a call to help me name my retreat center. Here is what I posted on Facebook:
Many of you know me well. Some of you don't. But if you're here, perhaps you've been following my journey in some capacity and have picked up on my passion, my vision, my energy and how I show up in the world. I'd love your help!!!
I need a name for my new center. I have some ideas but nothing has captured my heart yet. Here are a few pictures of the property, some key words, some key components of what I see happening here and a description of the physical plan. If you are so inspired, please either post below or private message me whatever comes to mind or heart. Thanks in advance!
connection, love, transformation, growth, community, retreat, authenticity, expanding human potential and capacity for love, curiosity, exploration and understanding
community gatherings for conversations that matter, discussion groups, spiritual movie nights, themed dinners, yoga classes, workshops, talks, meetings. Multi day writers retreats, mastermind retreats, personal growth workshops. Maybe even a Victorian wedding or two! Massage therapy practice currently onsite.
Description of property:
Built in 1903 (as best we know) this spectacular property sits on Forrest Brook with water views and deep water access to Silver Lake. Finished barn serves as a yoga studio and easily converts to workshop/gathering space seating 24 theater style for workshops/classes.
The old hayloft now serves as the owners apartment. That's where I live. The huge windows, light and sunrise/sunset views soothe my spirit on a daily basis! Massage therapy suite onsite. Huge deck and lovely outdoor brookfront space for outdoor events.
Main guest house has 4 bedrooms each with private bath. Common space includes kitchen, dining room and lakeview sitting room. Sunrise and sunset views from indoor and outdoor spots. Wrap around porch with screened in section.
Also, Delilah,our official canine greeter, and Leah and Sylvester, my cats that watch over my space, add some wonderful energy and hilarious antics to an already amazing place.
And ... yes ... it's haunted by two very sweet spirits who seem to be happy with the new owner.
Something that I think is important to know:
When I closed on the house, I had a punch list of things to check out and get estimates on including the roof, electrical, plumbing, grounds, airBNB listings ... the list goes on and on. I've had people come out to give me their opinions/assessment/estimates. What I didn't realize was that many of the workforce in the valley are kids (or families) that I have served through my nonprofit work. More than once I've been refused a bill for services rendered. I'm told that it's finally time for me to be paid back for some of what I've done for others. So a couple of other key words/concepts that come to mind about the essence of this property is co-creation, delightful surprises, immense gratitude and heartwarming tears.
And one last amazing thing that makes me know this was all meant to be:
My Mom died in September. When I was getting ready for her memorial service, I went through some old family photos, several of which I had never seen. Over the years my Mom used to talk about summering on a lake in NH, a place she loved and that was an annual part of her family history, but she couldn't recall the name of it. I came across an envelope of very old black and white photos. Buried among them was a picture titled "Mom Silver Lake 1924". It is a picture of my grandmother at 16 on the beach on Silver Lake, the very lake my center overlooks.
I got well over one hundred suggestions from friends, family and people I didn't even know. The name I chose was Ripple on Silver Lake. It was suggested by my cousin John after my Mom's favorite song. Ripple by the Grateful Dead. I got goosebumps and knew that was it. Of course it was. It was perfect.
Before Mom died, she had several strokes. Her speech was garbled and it was difficult to understand what she was trying to say. She knew what was happening and didn't like being so out of control. I watched her make the decision to die and I did my best to support her. She began to refuse food and water. I knew the end was near and was grateful I could spend so much time with her.
One day just before she slipped away she sat up in bed, took my hand, looked me in the eye with her beautiful blue eyes and spoke to me in the way she did when she had advice for me. She told me that she loved me. She wished me well in pursuing my dream. She told me that she was getting ready to go and that she would come visit me. She told me that I would know she was around because of the song. Ripple. She reminded me that the most important thing in life wasn't success or money or fame. The most important thing was love. And she told me she was proud of me for figuring that out and living my life that way. Only love. She repeated that two more times. Only love. Only love. And then her speech became garbled again. She held my hand, closed her eyes, laid back down and eventually fell asleep.
(If you're interested in reading more about the story behind the name: http://www.rippleonsilverlake.com/about-our-name.html )
That was about a year and a half ago and about six months before I purchased the property. Just he other day I was doing errands around town ... post office, hardware store, etc. I ran into a sweet elderly woman and we started to chat. Eventually it came out that I was the person who bought the big old yellow house. She exclaimed, "You must be Trish!" And continued, "I've heard alot about you and that you'll be doing good things there. I love that house. It has fond memories for me. Way back when i was young, my mother and I used to walk there from the lake. They used to serve ice cream in your parlor, ya know. We used to go there for ice cream in the summer."
I smiled at the thought of my house being the local ice cream parlor. Those of you who know me know that ice cream is my favorite food. And lately I've been waking up with thought of serving ice cream in the summer. I even did a bit of exploring about what it would take to do that.
Then it hit me! "Thank you for sharing that story with me. Do you mind if I ask how old you are?" I asked. "I am 83," She answered.
I got goosebumps. My Mom would have been 83 this year. At the same time this woman was enjoying her ice cream with her Mom, I'll bet my Mom was enjoying her ice cream with her Mom. My grandmother. And her siblings.
No wonder I can feel Mom here with me all the time! As I stood there I recalled that moment with my Mom. Ripple. You will know I am with you when you hear it.
What's in a name? Goosebumps. Memories. Connection. So much love. And a sudden craving for ice cream ...
It's was a gloomy, black, white and gray sort of day in Silver Lake, NH. There is still snow on the ground. I spent the afternoon inside the training barn assembling bistro tables for the sunset deck for when the snow melts.
FedEx delivered six huge corrugated cardboard boxes, each containing the pieces and parts, screws and tools needed to assemble the sets ... and a whole lot of packing material. And I am ready to be outside so I thought, why not assemble these today and get ready for spring!
My brain tends to lean towards productivity. Before I start a project, it asks, "what is the goal and what is the most organized way to get to the goal?" There is something about being organized that clears my head for the other more interesting and inspiring thoughts that want to float through.
One by one, I unpacked the boxes separating out the packing materials into recycling containers. I laid out all the table tops upside down on the floor in a circle with space for me eventually sit in the middle to make assembling each set more efficiently. On top of each table top I lined up the foundation and placed a set of screws on the underside of each table. I stacked up the chairs against the wall (no assembly necessary) and one by one, cut them out of their packing material, discarding and recycling as necessary. I piled up the empty boxes, recycling containers and trash bags in the corner of the barn to free up space and make it easier to load up for removal later.
I got down on the floor and began to assemble the tables. As I finished each table, I turned up upright. I couldn't resist getting up and adding two chairs to the first table to see what it looked like. And then another and another ...
And then it happened. Suddenly I found myself immersed in scenes of wine and cheese receptions with candles over sunset. I imagined a group of students enjoying a break from our workshop outside on the deck overlooking Mount Chocorua and Forrest Brook. I imagined morning coffee on the deck as participants prepared for their day of transformational work. And even a small wedding reception!
I looked out and noticed that sunset was happening over the deck outside the barn. As I looked out at the sunset, I noticed that the deck still had a good amount of snow and ice that needs to melt before the tables can go out. Big sigh. Even the sunset was a bit stark; mostly black and white with only the slightest touch of pink to remind me that more warm and colorful days are coming..
Six tables and twelve chairs completed. I felt a nudge to set one of the tables up with one of those sweet April Cornell tablecloths I got on closeout last year when I had first starting visualizing summer events on the deck. Adorable. I was inspired to set up the rest of the tables around the barn. I had never thought about setting them up in the barn, but I quickly began to visualize receptions for local artists and book signings for authors. I looked around the room and noticed that six wasn't enough. I need eight. I took my computer and sat at one of the tables (the one with the sweet tablecloth) and went online and ordered two more sets. They were on closeout for a great price!
I looked around and imagined an internet cafe as right now I am sitting at a bistro table sipping tea while answering some emails and making this post! Or perhaps a make your own sundae bar event as a way to wrap up a workshop. The ideas simply flowed.
It's so fun to live life and approach work in a way that frees up the conscious brain and allows the heart to engage. In my experience, that place and that energetic vibration is where joy lives and where imagination and creativity flow, which allows inspiration to emerge. And that is where the magic of manifestation lives.
Now to get back to preparing slides for my upcoming Manifesting Magic workshop and perhaps putting together a price list for people who want to rent the property for their own events! And then I need to move the bistro sets out of the barn and to the shed in time for yoga class until I can break them out to get ready for our Ripple on Silver Lake Open House.