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 been a year since I bought my wonderful, old Victorian home with the vision of turning it into a retreat center. As you can imagine, the project list is a mile long ... but it is happening! Ripple on Silver Lake is coming alive! I move into each day with the intention that I will have the support I need, the money I need and the motivation I need to continue moving towards my vision. And the Universe just keeps surprising me.
Last week, as I chipped away at my list of things to do for the upcoming Open House that is happening on June 22-23, I went out to look at the garden beds on the front and side of the house. The lawn had invaded both beds and the perennials had been overtaken. It was a mess. I am not a gardener ... nor did I even know how to begin tackling this project. I put it out to the cosmos that help would show up and I asked around for advice on how to approach the project.
In the meantime, I've begun teaching classes in the barn that I've turned into a lovely training room. A couple of weeks ago I taught a class on Manifesting Magic with the Law of Attraction. At the end of the class, a woman came up to me and told me that she would like to help me rehab my gardens. She loved the property and felt drawn to make the offer to help me.
And then I didn't hear from her.
Two weeks later I went to a yard sale on Friday that was a fundraiser for a local nonprofit. I found an edger for $3. I didn't even really know how to use an edger, but felt drawn to buy it. One of my gardening friends who gave me advice on my garden project told me that I should start with an edger to set the line for the bed. So $3.00 later I was ready to start tackling the bed. I was running out of time to get the beds in shape in time for the Open House and decided to start rehabbing the beds the next day.
The next morning, just as I was getting dressed to head outside the woman from class texted me and told me she had some time available to help me and wondered if she could come over and to work on the beds. I told her I was just about to head out. She showed up. Four hours later, both beds were back to plantable soil, the grass was gone and the perennials could breathe again.
She was amazing. And clearly she loved her work. And I totally enjoyed our conversation as we cut out the grass and restored the beds. She refused compensation but accepted my invitation to grab a bite in exchange for her time. She agreed and our conversation continued.
I asked her why she reached out to me and offered to help. She told me she felt drawn by something beyond her that she didn't quite understand. She told me that since she took my Manifesting Magic class she was trying to act on that sense and pay attention to the things that often went unnoticed. We continued to chat over our meal. She was clearly in transition, cleary open, cleary ready.
My mind wandered to when I was in that state. That was the summer of 2010 when I connected to the Success Principles, got introduced to the Law of Attraction and attended Breakthrough to Success. That was the year I got clarity. That was the year my life transformed and I got on the path to living with passion and purpose.
I drifted back to the conversation as she was talking about needing to find clarity in some of the unknown. And then it hit me. Breakthrough to Success! I now work for Jack Canfield and I have access to BTS tickets for the weeks of service. I had an unused ticket. In the moment I felt inspired to offer it to her. And I did.
At first she told me that she didn't know how she would pay for the airfare and the lodging. But she stopped mid-sentence and acknowledged the goosebumps she had on her arms. "You taught me to pay attention to the goosebumps," she said.
"Where is BTS held?", she asked. "Scottsdale, AZ," I replied. "My daughter lives in Phoenix. I have a plane ticket to go see her in the fall. Perhaps I can change the dates!" she exclaimed.
By the time we got our check, she had a plan. She will be at BTS. And she insists on helping me maintain my gardens in exchange for the BTS experience. Win-win all around.
I love how the Universe works when I get out of it's way. I love how things simply flow in perfect timing with a wonderful display of magic that we could never orchestrate on our own.
Don't forget ... pay attention when the goosebump happen. They mean that magic is flowing ...
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.
A year ago today I found out that my mortgage for my dream property was approved. Facebook memories reminded me. It was also the day that my Dad's spirit came back after he had been hanging out on death's door for awhile. It was the day after my brother Kevin lost his battle to cancer and six months to the day that my Mom died. Dad had emergency open heart surgery that ended up in cardiac arrest and began a long and difficult six month journey back to health. Way too much! As I look back there are hardly words to describe everything that was happening and how I got through it. Well, maybe one word ...
Here's the post Facebook Memories showed me this morning:
April 14, 2018 at 8:08 PM, Bradenton FL
Dad's spirit is back! He is awake, alert, medically stable and responding well to everything he is being asked to do so he can finally move on to the next step in the rehab process. It is so good to look into his eyes and know it's really him looking back at me as he squeezes my hand to let me know he's really there. He can't talk yet with his trach, but soon ... really soon.
It's been a long and difficult year for me and my family. Watching my Mom slip away was difficult. Losing my brother Kevin, way too young, was way too much. Sitting at my Dad's bedside in Florida not knowing if he would pull through at the same time the rest of my family was saying goodbye to my brother was just crazy. At the same time, it's been a year full of insights, awareness, growth and transformation ... within each of us and all around us.
As I look back over my experience and reflect on how I survived it all, I realize that I have a powerful set of foundational tools and an amazing network of people supporting me. I am inspired now, more than ever, to share those tools with others as I fully embrace the role they play in my life today. I've had an amazing opportunity to get some pretty high level coaching with Jack Canfield, his team and a wonderful group of people who helped me sort out and map out the next steps in my journey. Jack was standing with me in the moment I gave consent for my Dad's doctor to perform surgery that gave us the last chance for my Dad to come back from his medically induced coma and hooked up to a ventilator.
So many thoughts and ideas flowing right now.
In this instant, the most exciting news right now is this. For those of you who have heard me talk about my dream of opening a retreat center, I just got word that my mortgage for the property I live in was approved. It is the ideal location at exactly the right time. Through all the challenges, this miracle emerged at exactly the perfect time in ways I never could have imagined. I never would have seen the house deal unfolding in the midst of the crisis and chaos if I had not had the foundation upon which I live my life today.
In the perfection, the duality in all of this is profound. It brings me to the question "what's good and what's bad?" From my perspective, it's all one. Just as we are all one. All opportunities to learn and grow and heal and transform fear to love, and ultimately, when we are ready, to serve.
Today Dad is back on the golf course. When I talked to him this morning. I could hear the excitement in his voice when he told me that he's back on the golf course and that he just got word that he qualified for the River Isles Annual Golf Tournament. And he could hear the excitement in my voice as I told him I was putting together my event schedule and business plan for Ripple on Silver Lake. Both of us expressed our gratitude with each other as we reflected back over the year. The miracles. The challenges. The connections. The magic. The love. As I hung up the phone my thoughts led me to on of my favorite songs about life and love. How do you measure a year in the life ... ?
Seasons of Love from Rent (Original Cast Recording/1996)
Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes
Five hundred twenty-five thousand moments so dear
Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes
How do you measure, measure a year?
In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee
In inches, in miles. in laughter, in strife?
Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes
How do you measure a year in the life?
How about love?
Measure in love ...
Seasons of Love