About this blog

Welcome to Speak Your Art Blog Hub. This blog combines posts from seven of my other blogs: In the Flow Studios Arts, In the Flow Studios Body, I Love Shelter Dogs, Mana Keepers, PaaMano Eskrima & Performing Arts, Self-Actualization thru Women's Empowerment and Speak Your Art Poetry. It brings my organizations together and offers my readers an easier way to follow new posts in one convenient location.

I hope you will find something that inspires you, empowers you or reminds you of the limitless possibilities that dwell within you. Thank you for visiting. I wish you Peace today and everyday.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Arleen Hurtado Artist Highlight

We are delighted to feature Arleen Hurtado in our upcoming In the Flow Studios Arts Showcase and Film Debut on Nov. 15th in La Mirada, CA. Arleen is one of our favorite artists. Her live performances are charged with passion and precision. When she dances she brings forth the strength and graces of her Iberian ancestors. She transports her audiences to another place and time.
Kennedy Center, in DC Sept 2014
Arleen’s flamenco is the embodiment of the powerful force of nature that is the feminine. She uses her body to tell the age-old stories of distant lands, of battles won and lost, of heartbreak, of triumph and of culture. Even in her subtle hand movements she brings intention and expression. Her passionate interpretation of traditional flamenco has brought me to tears on more than one occasion. While Arleen’s technical ability is superb, it’s her passion that distinguishes her art. “Great dancers are not great because of their technique, they are great because of their passion.” Martha Graham
A multilayered and multitalented artist, Arleen is always looking for ways to push her artistic boundaries and grow out of her comfort zone. While she has performed and shared traditional flamenco in film, television and venues worldwide, one can also find her locally on stages like the Zulu Lounge, courageously sharing her unique dance fusion accompanied by the equally passionate and unique sounds of Flametal (flamenco metal heavy fusion Spanish guitar). 

About Arleen's dance journey:
Arleen Hurtado grew up in southern California. Early in life she began playing the drums and trained in ballet, jazz and tap. As a child she discovered flamenco on a trip to Spain, which appealed to her passion for both dance and percussion. Arleen pursued her study of flamenco in Seville and Jerez de la Frontera, Spain, New Mexico, New York and California with world-renowned artists. For the last 18 years she has performed around the world, including several tours of the United States, as well as performances in United Arab Emirates, Lebanon, Spain, Italy, China and India. In the US she has performed in theaters including Carnegie Hall in New York, Red Rocks in Denver and the Greek Theater in Los Angeles. Arleen has been featured in music videos, commercials, television, print ads and three PBS specials. Based in Los Angeles, Arleen teaches weekly flamenco classes and continues to perform and tour.
About Arleen the teacher:
Arleen is an amazing teacher. Not only do her students benefit from her 18 years of experience performing at venues worldwide but they also get a kind, encouraging and patient teacher. Her classes  are perfect for beginners as well as for advanced students. Arleen has the ability to breakdown technique in the most fundamental of ways all the while keeping students entertained and engaged. I had the honor of training with her and was blown away in every class. Her positive energy is infectious and I found it would spillover into my daily life. Through flamenco, Arleen helps her students tap into their sense of personal power and inner grace. If you live in Southern California and have ever wanted to experince flamenco sign up to one of her classes in Los Angeles or Orange County.

For more information about Arleen's upcoming performances or for her teaching schedule goto her websites:

For more info about our upcoming event goto Arts Open House and Ke-ola Rehab Fundraiser 
Contact Info for In the Flow Studios Arts
Instagram: http://instagram.com/speakyourart

Facebook Events: https://www.facebook.com/events/979319725413761/

"In the Flow Studios is a grassroots organization dedicated to empowering the arts, the artist and worthy causes."

Monday, October 27, 2014

Finding Strength in Our Struggles

 The story of the butterfly

A man found a cocoon of a butterfly.
One day a small opening appeared.
He sat and watched the butterfly for several hours
as it struggled to squeeze its body through the tiny hole.
Then it stopped, as if it couldn't go further.

So the man decided to help the butterfly.
He took a pair of scissors and
snipped off the remaining bits of cocoon.
The butterfly emerged easily but
it had a swollen body and shriveled wings.

The man continued to watch it,
expecting that any minute the wings would enlarge
and expand enough to support the body,
Neither happened!
In fact the butterfly spent the rest of its life
crawling around.
It was never able to fly.

What the man in his kindness
and haste did not understand:
The restricting cocoon and the struggle
required by the butterfly to get through the opening
was a way of forcing the fluid from the body
into the wings so that it would be ready
for flight once that was achieved.

Sometimes struggles are exactly
what we need in our lives.
Going through life with no obstacles would cripple us.
We would not be as strong as we could have been
and we would never be able to fly, unless tempered
through our trials and troubles.

You can find more information about my Women's Empowerment Organization at:
Website Women's Empowerment: http://www.empowerment.ws/home.html
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/EmpowermentWS?ref=hl
Website Kadan Martial Arts: http://kadanmartialarts.com
Poetry Musings Blog: http://speakyourart.blogspot.com

Thank you for honoring the feminine and thank you for visiting. Wishing you peace.

Halloween and All Hollows Eve

The Origins of the Festival: Halloween seems to have grown around the ancient Gaelic festival of Samhain, marking the end of the light half of the year and the beginning of the dark half. Samhain was in part a sort of harvest festival, when the last crops were gathered in for the winter, and livestock killed and stored. But the pagan Celts also believed it was a time when the walls between our world and the next became thin and porous, allowing spirits to pass through. A celebration much like our Halloween, with bonfires and feasting on apples and nuts and harvest fruits, was part of pagan worship for centuries. The Britons celebrated in honor of their sun-god with bonfires, a tribute to the light that brought them abundant harvest. At the same time they saluted Samhain, their "lord of death," who was thought to gather together at last the souls of the year's dead which had been consigned to the bodies of animals in punishment for their sins. The practice of wearing spooky costumes may have its roots in that belief: dressing up as a ghost to scare off other ghosts seems to have been the idea. The Romans celebrated the same kind of festival at this time in honor of their goddess Pomona, a patroness of fruits and gardens. 

About All Hallows Eve
It was in the eighth century that the Catholic Church appointed a special date for the feast of All Saints, followed by a day in honor of her soon-to-be saints, the feast of All Souls. She chose this time of year, it is supposed, because in her part of the world it was the time of barrenness on the earth. The harvest was in, the summer done, the world brown and drab and mindful of death. Snow had not yet descended to comfort and hide the bony trees or blackened fields; so with little effort man could look about and see a meditation on death and life hereafter.
Apparently how you spent the vigil of All Saints depended on where you lived in Christendom. In Brittany the night was solemn and without a trace of merriment. On their "night of the dead" and for forty-eight hours thereafter, the Bretons believed the poor souls were liberated from Purgatory and were free to visit their old homes. The vigil for the souls, as well as the saints, had to be kept on this night because of course the two days were consecutive feasts and a vigil is never kept on a feast.
Families prayed by their beloveds' graves during the day, attended church for "black vespers" in the evening and in some parishes proceeded thence to the charnel house in the cemetery to pray by the bones of those not yet buried or for whom no room could be found in the cemetery. Here they sang hymns to call on all Christians to pray for the dead and, speaking for the dead, they asked prayers and more prayers. It was in Ireland and Scotland and England that All Hallows' Eve became a combination of prayer and merriment. Following the break with the Holy See, Queen Elizabeth forbade all observances connected with All Souls' Day. In spite of her laws, however, customs survived; even Shakespeare in his Two Gentlemen of Verona has Speed tell Valentine that he knows he is in love because he has learned to speak "puling like a beggar at Hallowmas." 

Where the Name Comes From
The name Hallowe’en is a shortening of All Hallows’ Even, or All Hallows’ Evening. All Hallows is an old term for All Saints’ Day (Hallow, from the Old English “halig”, or holy, compared with Saint, from the Latin “sanctus”, also meaning holy, or consecrated). In the original Old English, it was known as Eallra H?lgena aefen.

The classic Hallowe’en jack-o’-lantern, a carved grinning pumpkin, is both a new and an ancient practice. Originally, it seems to have come from an old Irish legend of a man called Stingy Jack, a miserly farmer who played a trick on the devil but was too stingy to go to Heaven and too clever to go to hell, so as punishment was cursed to wander the earth, lighting his way with a candle inside a hollowed-out turnip. When the tradition moved to America pumpkins were used instead of turnips.
Trick or Treat
On All Saints’ Day. The idea would be that the beggars would say prayers for the souls of the dead in exchange for food. “Guising”, disguising oneself as a ghoul to fool evil spirits, also took place. Begging at the door grew from an ancient English custom of knocking at doors to beg for a "soul cake" in return for which the beggars promised to pray for the dead of the household. Whether this directly led to the practice of children dressing up as scarecrows and ghosts and going door-to-door demanding sweets with menaces is unclear. It is possible that the tradition emerged independently in America. The first recorded use of the phrase “trick or treat” stems from 1927.

Thank you for visiting. Wishing you Peace today and everyday.


Día de los Muertos Quotes and Images

Thank you for visiting. Wishing you Peace today and everyday.


Friday, October 24, 2014

Health Benefits of Rose Hips

Most people don't realize that their roses are fruit bushes. If we leave the flower to wilt on the plant it will become a Rose Hip. Rose Hips are packed with a multitude of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Here's a brief overview of the nutritional powerhouse that is the Rose Hip and some fun and interesting information about their metaphysical properties. Thank you Mana Keepers' for the metaphysical information. 
Roses are a nutritional powerhouses, all parts of the rose, and especially the hips, are storehouses of Vitamin C and other important nutrients. (Compared to the nutritional content of oranges, rose hips contain 25 percent more iron, 20 to 40 percent more Vitamin C, 25 times the Vitamin A, and 28 percent more calcium.) In addition, rose hips are a rich source of bioflavonoids, pectin, Vitamin E, selenium, manganese, and the B-complex vitamins. Rose hips also contain trace amounts of magnesium, potassium, sulfur and silicon. Rose hips can be found in dried form in most health food stores, but why not gather your own fresh supply? All roses are edible, a rose hip is the fruit of the rose plant. In spring wild roses produce lovely blossoms. As the petals fade, a green hip, or hypanthium, begins to swell at each blossom's base. When they are fully red and ripe you can gather them for making soup, wine, syrup, jelly, and tea. If you live, in a temperature zone that's too cold to grow citrus fruit, rose hips are an excellent alternative food source of Vitamin C. Rose hips don't have much flesh beneath their skins. Instead, they are filled with tiny seeds covered with silky hairs. The skin of the hip is where most of the food value and nutrition lies. 

Native Americans have been using rosehips as tea for hundreds of years, and when the tea is finished, the hips were added to stews or soups. There was just too much nutrition in a rose hip to let it go to waste. Here are some helpful hints so that you can do the same. 

Finding and gathering rose hips: 

Wild roses grow throughout the world and most have been part of the human diet. In late summer, rose hips ripen to bright red and are ready for gathering. We can also look to our own gardens. The domesticated roses we find there are rich in nutrients. (Many enthusiastic gardeners never see the development of colorful hips because as soon as blossoms fade they are snipped off to tidy up the garden. Blossoms must be left on the plant to naturally fade and fall for hips to develop.) 
Rose hips as food:
Rose hips can be made into a variety of appetizing, healthy dishes. Turned into jelly, syrup, and wine. Rose hips may be used fresh or dried. To dry them, discard any with discoloration then rinse in cold water, pat dry, and spread on a wax paper-lined cookie sheet. It takes a couple of weeks for them to dry. They will be darker in color, hard, and semi-wrinkly. Rub off any stems or remaining blossom ends. Pour them into jars for storage in a dark pantry or cupboard.
Here are a few recipes:
Rose Hip Tea: they may be used fresh or dried. For fresh brewing, steep a tablespoon or two of clean hips in a cup of boiling water for about 10 minutes. Sweeten with honey and enjoy. To make a tea of dried hips, use only two teaspoons to one cup of boiling water and steep for 10 to 15 minutes. 
Rose Hip Syrup: Can be used for pancakes, waffles, and vanilla ice cream. It is made from freshly gathered rose hips. Rinse and pat dry the hips and place them in a saucepan. Barely cover with water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer until soft, about 10 to 15 minutes. Cool and strain the mixture, pressing the liquid off the hips gently with the back of a spoon, being careful not to break them open and release the seeds. If this happens, merely strain the seeds out. The resulting liquid may be frozen in batches for future use in soup or jelly, or turned into tasty syrup. To make rose hip syrup, add one part honey to two parts of the heated, strained liquid. Stir to dissolve the honey and refrigerate. After refrigeration, the syrup will thicken slightly. Rose hip syrup will keep in the refrigerator for about two weeks. Reheat the syrup for use on pancakes and waffles. Use it warm or cold to top vanilla ice cream. Rose hip syrup may be used to sweeten and flavor herbal or black teas, as well. Whispering Earth offer a delicious and simple jam recipe Simplest Rosehip Jam
*Caution: If you are gathering rose hips off your property be careful that they have not been treated with pesticides.
Metaphysical Properties:
Zodiac: Taurus
Gender: Female
Planet: Jupiter
Element: Water 
Deities: Venus, Hulda, Demeter, Isis, Eros, Aphrodite
Basic Powers: Healing, love, fertility. Used by young Native American braves to enhance strength and health. 

Wishing you health and harmony today and everyday. Thank you for visiting.

For more information about In the Flow Studios ~ Body 
goto the website at http://intheflowstudios.com
or to follow us on fb goto In the Flow Studios ~ Body 
and the In the Flow Studios ~ Body Blog


Monday, October 20, 2014

The Inner-Child and Our Physical Body

The inner-child may also be referred to as the subconscious mind or the Unihilipi. Most of us have never given it (inner-child) a moments thought. We live our lives immersed in external stimuli and spend little to no time to check-in with our inner-self. 

Being neglectful of our internal state of affairs is deterimemtal to our physical and psychological wellbeing. 

Our subconscious is responsible for the function of the involuntary systems of our bodies. It also holds all of our memories, experiences and thoughts from the beginning of our creation. The concious mind is generally unaware of the workings of the subconscious yet it (the conscious mind) is directed and sustained by the the subconscious. 

"The autonomic nervous system (ANS or visceral nervous system or involuntary nervous system) is the part of the peripheral nervous system that acts as a control system that functions largely below the level of consciousness to control visceral functions, including heart rate, digestion, respiratory rate, salivation, perspiration, pupillary dilation, micturition (urination), sexual arousal, breathing and swallowing. Most autonomous functions are involuntary but they can often work in conjunction with the somatic nervous system which provides voluntary control."

It is important to spend time everyday with your innerself. You don't need to be a Reiki Master, Yoga Master or Guru to connect with your inner-child. You just need an open mind guided by an open heart and a commitment to love. 

Here is a simple exsersise I do with my energetic meditation group to connect with our inner-child about our physical bodies. If you are inspired you can try it at home on your own. 

Meditation for connection to the physical self

Make sure you are well hydrated and well rested prior to meditation. Find a place where you will not be disturbed. Turn your electronics off. (Mobil phone, computer, etc) Find a comfortable position either seated or laying-down  (If at anytime you become dizzy or you experience "the spins" just open your eyes and look straight ahead. Don't move until the dizziness subsides.)

1. Close your eyes. 

2. Inhale deeply into your belly slowly. Fell your belly rise. 

3. Hold the breath for a moment. 

4. Exhale the breath slowly. Feel your belly flatten. 

5. Hold the emptiness for a moment. 

6. Repeat until you feel your body and mind in a relaxed state. (Careful not to make yourself "light-headed".)

7. Once you are in a more relaxed state begin to check-in with your physical body. Visualize your body from head to toe and scan for any pain, discomfort, or tension. 

8. Each time you find a place that feels a difficulty, breath in a deep cleansing breath filled with white light. If the pain is in your foot, direct the breath to your foot. Bring white light to the area with every inhale and let the pain and stress leave your body with every exhale. Remember that love is a powerful healing tool. Make "I love you" and "Thank you" your mantra as your breath in cleansing white light and exhale that which no longer serves. 

9. Continue to check-in throughout your entire body. Spend as much time as needed in each area. 
Take your time, there is no rush.

10. Complete breathing meditation by inhaling white light through the top of our head and bring the breath down your spine through your legs and exhaling out the bottoms of your feet.

11. Thank your subconscious for guiding your conscious attention to the places in your body that needed healing, love and balance. 

12. Remember to drink plenty of water and keep your love and gratitude mantra (mentally repeating, I love you & Thank you) going throughout the day.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

November's Love and Gratitude Boutique

Love and Gratitude are the greatest gifts we can give and receive. As we enter Fall most of us think about changing leaves, Halloween costumes, getting back to school and turkey dinners. While autumn encompasses all those things it is also a wonderful time to give  thanks to the people that make a difference in our lives. 

Lapis Lazuli - Quick Reference
Thankfulness opens our hearts, expands our minds and shows us that even the most mundane experiences are filled with wonder. My blog post "Gratitude, the balm that soothes the soul" includes a ten-minute talk and video presentation that is a feast for the eyes and food for the soul. The images elicit wonder and stir the imagination. Louie Schawrtzberg combines his images with the words of Benedictine monk David Steindl-Rast in this moving and breathtaking piece titled “Happiness Revealed”. And the attitude of gratitude is at the root of our deepest joys.

November is a wonderful month to focus on the things we are grateful for. If we are lucky we have family and friends that enrich our lives. Mana Keepers' wants to help you honor these special people with beautiful gifts inspired by Mother Nature. 

Our boutique will be open for three dates in November: 11/9/14 - 2 to 5pm, 11/15/14 - 6 to 10pm (In the Flow Studios Arts), 11/23/14 - 2 to 5pm.

Amazonite Properties - Quick Reference
Mana Keepers has a large selection of stone hearts. The perfect way to gift a lifetime of love and gratitude. We offer nature-made/nature-shaped stones as well as nature-made/artist-shaped stones from all over the world. Dewdrops Images brings the healing power of Mother Nature into everyday lives.

We have hard to find crystals and minerals as well as traditional favorites, nature inspired artwork, photography and music. 

Amethyst Proporties - Quick Reference
Dolphin Totem - Quick Reference
Here are some of the pieces we'll have available. You can use the link under the picture for information about the stone properties.

Red Jasper - Quick Reference
Aqua Aura Meaning - Quick Reference

Adding a little sparkle to your Spring garden

Shiva Lingam Stones: Quick Reference
Hematite Properties - Quick Reference

Malachite - Quick Reference
Clear Quartz Properties - Quick Reference 

We hope you'll stop by, enjoy some tea and maybe find that perfect "thank you" gift. I'd be grateful if you would help get the word out and share as inspired. Thank you, Mahalo, Gracias, Salamat po, Merci
Mana Keepers La Mirada
11/9/14 - 2 to 5pm
11/15/14 - 6 to 10pm (In the Flow Studios Arts)
11/23/14 - 2 to 5pm

For mor info email info@manakeepers.com or visit our Facebook event page at https://www.facebook.com/events/770349553036522/