The Intention Jar
"Our Intentions Create Our Reality"
My stepdad and I sadly, did not have an ongoing relationship as I was approaching my teen years and into my adulthood. Lots of things got in the way as I was growing up. He and my mom had been apart for many years, and it was often very difficult for us to see each other. The time between our visits grew longer and longer, and then we were out of touch.
Thanks, however, in large part to modern technology, several years back we reconnected! He and his wife, Dee made a trip out to see us when Evan and I were still in San Diego, and before we started dreaming of the farm. I have always had fond memories of dad, as a kid, so I loved introducing Evan, to the man that made music, photography, ballet and art in general such an important part of my life.
After their initial visit to San Diego, we kept in touch and over the long Easter weekend in 2013, Evan and I planned a trip to visit my dad and Dee at their home in Nashville, TN. We’d been working on our plan now for a little over six months, and had already written down so many ideas in our book, that it was starting to bulge. The thing we hadn’t done was really share our plan with anyone; I wouldn’t call us superstitious, but this was a big deal to us, so sharing it, and not knowing how it was going to work out made us a little hesitant to start shouting it from the rooftops.
We had gotten into the habit of taking our plan book with us everywhere. Going for coffee? Take the book. Out to dinner? Take the book. We never knew when inspiration would strike, so having our book handy meant we could write our ideas down as they came to us. So naturally it was Nashville bound with us. We had just boarded the plane on our way east, and I looked at Evan and said “I want to tell them. I don’t know why, but something in my gut tells me we should share this with them.” Evan has learned that when my gut starts talking, we both shut up and listen! But he said, we should just play it by ear.
We got in late that evening, and after all the hugs and kisses, and drive back to their home, we walked inside, and what did we see? A home covered in sheep! Sheep salt and pepper shakers, art, door stops, cat toys, even Mamma Dee’s slippers were sheep! As we said good night, and closed the bedroom door, I turned to Evan and whisper shouted, “SEE!!! WHAT DID I TELL YOU!!!???” I know that sounds silly, but it felt right to tell them, and Evan knew it too.
We woke up the next morning and were bubbling over with excitement. We couldn’t wait to share our dreams. The funny thing about sharing your dreams, is that when you do … it somehow becomes more real. We didn’t waste a minute telling them all about our plan. As we started talking, I felt the flood gates open, and as we continued talking we saw that dad and Dee started dreaming along with us. They felt so honoured that we chose to share our dream with them, and we felt good telling them. They gave us ideas, they questioned us, they challenged us to think about things we hadn’t thought of, and praised us for having done our homework. In a nutshell, they were the perfect cheerleaders.
Dee is an avid reader, and collects books of all genres. She turned us on to so many resources, and shared all she knew about wool. She shared recipes, and she and dad came up with a few ideas for events that we plan to implement when the time is right. She even called her sister and brother-in-law that run the XbarH Lodge in Southern Utah and made plans for all of us to make a visit later in the year. Dee thought it would be a good idea for us to see the inner workings of an inn, and we were excited to pepper Michelle and JC with questions!
Then came the intention jar, which may have been the best idea that came from our visit. And that’s saying something, because a lot of great ideas came out of that visit! Dee suggested that we get a jar with a lid, and write a letter to put inside. What is special about the letter is that you write down all your plans as if they have already happened! Then place the letter in the jar, and place the jar in the center of the house.
We did exactly that as soon as we got home. We took the weekend to write out our intention. We wrote everything down as if it had already happened. We weren’t too specific about an exact property, but we stated that we had a beautiful piece of land in Paso Robles. We wrote about everything we had for the plan, and wrote it as if it were a done deal. We made sure to include how thankful we were to have a loving and supportive relationship, and family and friends. And we put it in the center of the home, where we walked past it every day.
When we packed up the house, we only took with us our dogs, some clothes, our book and our intention jar. As soon as we got to our temporary residence we placed the jar in the center of the cottage where we were staying, and it was business as usual.
It was just a few short days later that we decided to re-read our intention (which I highly recommend from time to time. It keeps you focused) and it was astonishing how much had already come to be. As a matter of fact, our intention jar was sitting on top of the contract we had just put on our home!
Support comes from the most unexpected places, so does inspiration, and love. Not that I hadn’t known we would have support and love from dad and Dee, the part that was unexpected is how much sharing with them changed the course of things. I have learned so many things in my life, and have the rest of my days to continue learning, but what I learned from that trip to Nashville was that you can’t keep your dreams a secret. That, and when you have a strong instinct about something, listen.
We were all born with a road map and an inner compass. How you get to where you’re going is completely up to you. Some of us take the scenic route. Some of us love to travel the empty roads at break neck speeds, and some of us seem to always find ourselves in the middle of a traffic jam. It doesn’t matter the path you take, just so long as you don’t stop moving forward. Follow your dreams, no matter how scary the road ahead looks. Follow your dreams.