All Living Things

“Be respectful of the small insects,
birds and animal people who accompany you.
Ask their forgiveness for the harm we humans
have brought down upon them.”
Joy Harjo

All Living Things

There’s a poet I admire, Joy Harjo who is the first Native American Poet Laureate in the history of the position. Her poetry as well as her memoir, Crazy Brave are written with such simplicity and beauty that I find myself thirsty for more of her writings, especially since I’ve devoured all of her books.

Harjo was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in 1951 and is a member of the Mvskoke/Creek Nation. She is not only a talented poet, but also an author, musician and playwright. She incorporates into her writing storytelling and histories of her Nation and frequently incorporates indigenous myths, symbols, and values.

One of the subject matters she has touched on is the subject of Spirit Animal, Animal Guide and Spirit Helper. These terms are used among different cultures to describe spirits of benevolent nature, usually helping someone during a hard time. These spirits can bring strength, insight, and even a sense or feeling to someone who needs it.

Native American culture believes these Spirit Helpers are not a novelty. It isn’t something you choose or identify with but rather something that comes to you in your time of need. Perhaps the animal represents something that holds a certain value, such as strength in a bull or agility in a dragonfly. In the Native American Lakota culture, these spirits tend to associate values with certain animals. However, that’s not all they bring. They hold a special place and represent a larger spiritual culture within a tribe.

In many indigenous cultures, spirituality is about a relationship to everything around you – the plants and animals that provide food, the land that provides a home, and the weather that makes living possible. These elements are highly respected because they enable us to live.

I tend to believe our spirituality is strongly tied to the value and respect we hold for the earth and all living things.

Shine On

A Magical Place to Live

“Life is like a landscape.
You live in the midst of it
but can describe it only
from the vantage point of distance.”
Charles Lindbergh

magical-place-to-live

Over three hundred years ago the Chowigna Indians lived along the fertile land in Redondo Beach. They lived off the rich soil and fishing the ocean. There was an abundance of fish such as halibut, lobster, and sea bass.

Then in 1854 the Chowigna were sent off to missions and the wealthy Manuel Dominguez sold Redondo Beach to Henry Allanson and William Johnson. These two men saw the possibilities that Redondo would hold. In 1892, Redondo Beach was incorporated and became a major tourist attraction for all walks of life.

Redondo was once described as “The Gem of The Continent” in the Los Angeles Daily Herald newspaper. Through the years famous attractions such as the Redondo Hotel have long disappeared. They say the Redondo Hotel induced more visitors than ever before to venture to the coast.

During prohibition the Hotel Redondo closed its doors and in 1925 was sold for scrap lumber. Big time gambling, complete with mobsters and shooting incidents, found its way to Redondo during the Depression. Chip games, bingo parlors, and a casino were run in full view of the law between 1936 and 1940. For a fare of 25 cents, a water-taxi would transport a visitor to the gambling ship Rex which operated three miles off shore.

chaplinThroughout its history famous people have flocked to Redondo Beach. During the silent film era, actor Charlie Chaplin was often seen visiting Redondo and even bought a beach cottage for his beloved mother. Charles Lindbergh attended a year of high school at Redondo Union as well as Demi Moore and the Smothers Brothers.  Residents included world famous athletes, authors, an atomic scientist, astronaut, and even a Nobel Prize winner. Redondo Beach is home to beach volleyball Gold Medalist Kerri Walsh.

Hollywood also fell in love with Redondo. Numerous films and television shows have been filmed in Redondo Beach and it continues to be a favorite Hollywood location. Who doesn’t remember the desired destination of the road-tripping family in the 2006 movie “Little Miss Sunshine”.

There have been a few songs written about Redondo Beach, such as Patti Smith’s song “Redondo Beach” and the song, “Surfin’ U.S.A.” by The Beach Boys even gives Redondo a call out.

redondo-gray-whales
Yes, Redondo Beach has quite a history. Before moving to Redondo Beach over a decade ago, I didn’t know its history or anything about Redondo. All I knew was that it is utterly beautiful, it has ideal weather and the clean air helped me decide this is where I wanted to live. For me, Redondo Beach will always be such a magical place to live.

Shine On

Learn Something New Daily

“Even the wisest mind has something yet to learn.”
George Santayana

learn something new

Unable to capture a Strawberry Moon, but did capture a Redondo Red Sunset

This past weekend was a Strawberry Moon and a penumbral lunar eclipse, which when this occurs the Sun, Earth, and the Moon are imperfectly aligned. The June full moon also happens to be the last full moon of Spring.

I’m embarrassed to say, I never heard of a Strawberry Moon. So being the curious kitty I am, I educated myself. As I dove deeper into the rabbit whole, I learned that every monthly Full Moon has been given a name to reflect the changing seasons and nature, like Harvest Moon, Strawberry Moon, or Snow Moon.

Native American tribes, named the months after features they associated with the seasons in the Northern Hemisphere, and many of these names are very similar or identical.

Full Moon Names

2020Full Moons January  Wolf Moon – Named after howling wolves, which may stem from the Anglo-Saxon lunar calendar. Other names: Moon After Yule, Old Moon, Ice Moon, and Snow Moon.

February  Snow Moon – Named after the snowy conditions. Some North American tribes named it the Hunger Moon due to the scarce food sources during mid-winter, while other names are Storm Moon and Chaste Moon.

March Worm Moon – Named because of the earthworms that come out at the end of winter. It’s also known as the Crow Moon, Crust Moon, Sap Moon, Sugar Moon, and Chaste Moon.

April Pink Moon – Named for the pink phlox flowers which bloom in the early Spring. Other names for this Full Moon include Sprouting Grass Moon, Fish Moon, Hare Moon, and the Egg Moon.

May Flower Moon – This moon signifies the flowers that bloom during this month. Other names for the Full Moon in May are Corn Planting Moon, and Milk Moon.

June Strawberry Moon – Named so for the wild strawberries that start to ripen during this month. Other names are Hot Moon, Mead Moon, and Rose Moon.

July Buck Moon – Is so named because the new antlers emerge on deer buck’s foreheads around this time. This Full Moon is also known as Thunder Moon, Wort Moon, and Hay Moon.

August Sturgeon Moon – Named because of the large number of fish in the lakes where the Algonquin tribes fished. Other names for this Full Moon include Green Corn Moon, Barley Moon, Fruit Moon, and Grain Moon.

September Full Harvest Moon – Technically, the Harvest Moon is the Full Moon closest to the September equinox around September 22. Most years it is in September, but around every three years, it is in October. The Harvest Moon is the only Full Moon name which is determined by the equinox rather than a month.

October Hunter’s Moon – Every three years, the Hunter’s Moon is also the Harvest Moon. Traditionally, people in the Northern Hemisphere spent the month of October preparing for the coming winter by hunting, slaughtering and preserving meats for use as food.

November Beaver Moon – According to folklore, the Full Moon in November is named after beavers who become active while preparing for the winter. It is also known as Frosty Moon, and along with the December Full Moon some called it Oak Moon. Traditionally, if the Beaver Moon is the last Full Moon before the winter solstice, it is also called the Mourning Moon.

December Cold Moon – Is the Full Moon when winter begins for most of the Northern Hemisphere.

Some years have 13 Full Moons, which makes at least one of them a Blue Moon, as it doesn’t quite fit in with the traditional Full Moon naming system. However, this is not the only definition of a Blue Moon.

About every 19 years, there is no Full Moon in February. This is one of several definitions of the term Black Moon. The other definitions refer to a New Moon which does not fit in with the equinoxes or solstices, similar to a Blue Moon.

Colonial Americans adopted many of the Native American names and have since incorporated them into the modern calendar.

Sorry for the long post today fellow Blogaholics, but I like to try and learn something new daily.

Shine On