Category Archives: expect miracles

Opening the doors to Dubai Magic

Opening the doors to Dubai Magic

By Lynn U Stewart

 

When the green lights of new vistas are on, those times need to be acknowledged. They are not always green, but when they are… they need to be celebrated. This is a story about green lights, magic, and new introductions.

My family took me to Budapest for my birthday. It was a momentous occasion filled with my favorite things: team-teaching the MMS Coach Training, willing participants, great hotel, fine dining and sightseeing. All of those ingredients were in place including our self-appointed tour guide Csaba, a local MMS/ICF ACC Coach and a very dear friend had volunteered to give us the Budapest tour of a lifetime.

While sitting in the backseat of his Range Rover, Cherie, my business partner and sister, was talking about all of the activities and series of coincidences all circling around the subject of Dubai. Over the last few weeks no matter where we were, the subject of people moving to Dubai, or knowing someone in Dubai had been popping up on our radar screen. For some reason Dubai was the new conversation. At that very moment, Csaba, behind the wheel commented, “I used to work for Emirates Airlines and there are some dear people in my life who live and work in Dubai. Perhaps it is time for me to introduce you and MMS coaching to my Dubai friends? “

His suggestion was met with approval. However, although Csaba’s words had planted a seed who knew when the subject would be revisited… and so, our city tour continued without a plan.

That Tuesday, we did the MMS Coaching seminar. At lunch Csaba picked up this thread from the weekend tour. He shared that it was time to connect us to his friend in Dubai. The iPhone was dialed, introductions were made, and a conversation was initiated. The connection was made, and an invitation was extended from Dubai to us. Plane reservations were made, hotels reserved, the dates were selected.

On a Friday in June we went to Dubai. Magic was in the air.

Csaba introduced us to Mana and the project was explored at the Burj Al Arab Hotel, the only 7-star hotel in the world. What about an ICF/MMS Coach Training in the Gulf? Not only was the idea embraced with open arms, the possibility of visiting and working in the Emirates was on the table.

Mana saw the project as a contribution to his people and the doors of possibilities opened wide. The notion of introducing men and women from the Middle East to the spirit of coaching was in front of us and the excitement was exhilarating.

When we left Dubai that day, we were blessed with the invitation to return in a month’s time to ground the business relationships and plan our first MMS/ICF/ACSTH Coach Training.

A birthday visit launched a whole new world for people in the Middle East. Dubai was to become the recipient of a new frontier for our MMS footprints.

As of February 26th, we have just completed the first half of our MMS ICF ACSTH 60-hour Coach Training program in Dubai! Part B will be in early April. New chances and choices and opportunities are blossoming for people in the Gulf

What messages have you been hearing lately ? What opportunities are at your door step. What silent whispers have you ignored?
Be ready for the moment to pop up when you least expect it, follow your dreams, take action instantly, and see what happens.

Today allow your self to say yes to life and see what magic your new introductions can yield.  

Visit MMS Dubai website.

The Perfect Path to Partnering

The Perfect Path to Partnering

By

Lynn U Stewart


I had given up on men. After 17 years of being on my own, I was pretty clear that singlehood was my future… that is until a series of incidents occurred and changed my mind. Let me explain.

I sat in my Santa Barbara living room interviewing the next couple to be our housemates. A very attractive middle-aged couple sat across from me. As I asked them about their lives, and lifestyle preferences I casually asked Tom and Eva, “How did you meet?” Their proud answer came back fast… Match.com!

I took my bulkhead seat on the United Flight back to my Amsterdam home. A middle-aged attractive woman took her place next to me. We flew across the ocean between Newark and The Netherlands, and she regaled me with stories about her man Tim. As the plane quieted down to let the passengers rest for the ten hour crossing, I asked her where she had met him. With quiet certainty and no shame she said, “Well, Match.com.”

In the airport at the end of the journey there was a couple that assisted me with my bags. Kind, connectable, and comfortable being my baggage handling helpers supporting me in organizing my luggage, we struck up a small conversation. They shared that they were on a small holiday enjoying their time together. All of a sudden as if I were taking a survey, I heard myself ask the magic question, “How did you meet?” The response was a shock. As if all roads lead to one destination, I heard the whisper, “Match.com.”

Whenever I hear the same answer three times in a row, I stop, look, and listen. This was incident #3 and the magic number resonated in my heart. I was being asked by the universe to be a candidate/participant on Match.com.

Upon my return to my Herengracht apartment in Amsterdam, I told my family of the synchronicity. My business-partner, author, sister asked me if she could write my profile. Delighted with the impromptu offer, I enthusiastically responded with a resounding “Yes! What a pleasure!” To my surprise, she jumped on the project and produced a document that filled me with both joy and peace.

That night, I joined Match.com and started the process. To my great surprise, the site was a Dutch url and my “not-yet-so-perfect-command” of the Dutch language proved to be my next challenge. Just as I was struggling with my first response, the phone rang with Charlotte, my neighbor, sweetly checking in on the other end of the iPhone. Charlotte then suggested screen sharing on Skype so she could assist me with the Dutch questions. I was “all in” and actually enthusiastic about her joining my team to manifest my partner. What a “mitsfa,” what a series of synchronicities was on my path, as green lights kept flashing at my destiny. I was having fun with this and my support team was assembling as I sourced my answers.

 

That night the project was effortlessly launched. The relationship door was magically opening and the next chapter was about to open. The very next day a response came to me and the next story begins.

Is fate knocking at your door? Are you tuning into your messages? Are you willing to read the clues and let the universe deliver on your wildest dreams? Are you willing to believe that it is never too late? May I invite you to stop, look, and listen to the whispers of your own guidance?

Out of the Box Thinking Part 2

From

Expect Miracles Series

by Lynn U Stewart


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1967, Grenoble, France

I was trained to be an elementary school teacher. I taught for four years, with the final two years at the Êcole Françaises, a bilingual French school in New York City. While there, I learned to ski and spent vivid weekends in Vermont.

As I taught at the Ėcole, my passion for France grew. It was 1967, and the year of the first televised Olympic games. A desire began to brew within me to travel to France and work for the Olympics. Being on a teacher’s salary, however, there was no way to underwrite that dream—I had to get creative.

My neighbor, David, was the producer on a TV show called Snap Judgment. After several conversations I convinced him to give me a chance to audition for his TV show.  I had an enchanted third meeting with “guest talent” was chosen. That magical day I won $1,000! When the check arrived, I headed for the United States cruise line and bought a one-way ticket to Cherbourg, France.

Upon arrival, I took the train to Grenoble; this was to be my home for the next six months. On registration day at the university, I met Jacques, a restaurateur for the Park Hotel—a wonderful 5-star in central Grenoble. Having met him by chance, he invited me for lunch at his hotel. Our connection was undeniable. He liked me, and I liked him. He became my Olympic angel.

Every week I would go to either lunch or dinner at the Park and confided my Olympic dream in him.  Louise, my housemate, always joined me (as the invitation was dining for two.) Jacques was always busy with guests; he asked me to bring a friend, and I gladly obliged.

One afternoon, Jacques informed me that the staff from ABC, the American television network, had arrived at the Park. Having written over 30 solicitation letters without reply, I knew my chances for getting a job with ABC were slim. I introduced myself to the VP in charge of personnel, Eric Calder. I told him about my skills and qualifications, and to my great surprise, he invited me for an interview.

I was hired as a translator and hostess for the press. I was in charge of getting the press to and from the village/mountains to their various destinations. I was to take care of their French needs. From gloves, to vans, to hamburgers, my responsibilities were to see that their every wish was my command. Jim Mckay, Chris Schenkel, Roone Arledge, and Red Buttons were in my charge and I loved every minute of every day. Serving and supporting veteran Olympic stars and interviewers make their TV magic was my job description.

What I learned during that period was, “If I could dream it, I could do it!”  I made the seemingly impossible happen. I simply kept on going amid the “No’s” and the unresponsiveness of the Grenoble hospitality. I was determined to find my way into serving the Olympics.  Watching Jean Claude Keelie receive his gold medals changed my life.  The Grenoble Olympics launched my belief in serendipity, synchronicity, and causality.

Out of the Box Thinking

From

Expect Miracles Series

By Lynn U Stewart


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If you keep doing what you are doing you’ll keep getting what you’ve got. Sometimes you have to do something different to change your results. This is one of those stories…

Ken had been an employee of the Hard Rock Café since he was 17. When I started working with him he was an unfulfilled, highly successful, executive restaurateur. He desperately wanted to do something different. He knew what he wanted; however, he didn’t think he could get there. In his heart he was an artist.

When we first met, he arrived with an intricate hand-carved box. Hidden within the mahogany box were delicately arranged stamps, carefully crafted with inspirational words. The box was sturdy, impressive, and beautifully created. When he told me exactly what he wanted, I heard him. He wanted to work with a design firm. With no credentials, no degrees, and no formal training, he was at a loss as to what to do.

As we sat together, he shared his passion with me. He had carved many objects of art, all of which were impressive. They demonstrated precision, imagination—an artistic eye. He had amazing attention to detail, and creative ideas that made the ordinary into extraordinary. I listened attentively to his story and asked him if he was ready to make something happen through his own creativity. That’s when I told him about coaching. We chose to work together, and the process begun.

In our first coaching session, of which there were two, he identified firms that got his attention. Unfortunately, he didn’t know anybody there. He simply thought they were the kind of businesses where he might enjoy working. There were four design firms in Santa Barbara, California. He chose to go with his special box of words and his big smile to each of the firms and “look around.” He chose to do the research on “which one was his place?”

The first two were clear no’s, the third was a maybe, and the fourth was a “yes.” The people were friendly and open. He asked for a meeting with the office manager. He defined his specialty, his unique selling point. He told them he was a specialist at “bringing order out of chaos.” He wanted to know if they could use his services. He let them know that he had no formal training but showed his box to illustrate his attention to detail and his design eye. The manager’s “no they didn’t need any help” was not a deterrent. Ken asked for a tour. As he walked around the office he saw one trouble spot— the mailroom. At the end of their walk-through, he asked if they might trust him with a project to demonstrate his skills. He cited the mailroom as a place that could use his help and offered to do a pro-bono project for the firm… just because! The manager met with his manager, and they chose to give him a chance.

After organizing the mailroom, Ken was hired and his creative career was launched.

Everyday Super Heroes

 

Expect Miracles series

by Lynn U Stewart

 

With 6 million, 355 people living in Bangkok, finding the same taxi twice is almost impossible. Once a taxi has left it is absorbed into a sea of traffic.

We had a tasty dinner at Rasayana*, a raw food restaurant in the heart of Bangkok. Being off the beaten track, it took the four of us, Michael, Chérie, René and me a while to even locate a taxi… but we finally found one to take us to the nearest MRT – the Thai underground train system. It had been a special evening with gourmet bits and bites of vegetarian specialties, lots of acknowledgements and we were all more than satisfied.

We exited the taxi and walked toward the MRT entrance; René turned to me in panic: “My blue bag is gone!” He was in total upset with the thought of losing his passport, cash, credit cards, and his boarding pass for the next morning. Chérie ushered us off to the side of the street out of the major pedestrian traffic and Michael proclaimed, “I am on it!” He streaked out of site, running after the vanished cab.

René had a “negattack” as he recounted how the incident happened. Chérie stood on the corner and I asked René to trust, “If it can be found Michael will bring it back. “

This calamity lasted about two minutes. René pulled himself out of the anxiety zone and moved into trust, I actively prayed for a miracle while Michael disappeared into the sea of traffic.

All of a sudden out of the crowd emerged Michael with the blue bag in hand. He had run down the street looking for the cab. After the second street, he got a message, turned around, took a hard right onto a side street and saw a parked cab. Without a thought Michael ran up to the window and insisted that the driver open the window and give him the bag that was sitting on the seat. Michael gave him a generous tip for his honesty and the recovery and ran back to be with all three of us… who were intending for a miracle.

René, thunderstruck with what had just happened, was overwhelmed with gratitude, not to mention amazement. The calamity was over and the impending doom had lifted, the precious bag was miraculously returned!

Overwhelmed with delight the thought of gifting Michael was the next desire that came to mind…René asked Michael if he could give him a new pair of running shoes that Michael had been wearing to retrieve the bag.

The men have a plan to go shopping for new running shoes that will assist Michael in making the seemingly impossible happen.

Is there an impossible situation in your life? Are you convinced that something is lost forever? A change in attitude can make the impossible possible!

However, we had to be believers to allow the universe to deliver the now famous, blue bag.

Visit Dr. Chérie Carter-Scott’s website
Visit Michael Pomije’s website
*Visit Rasayana Retreat website

From Grim to Great

A Turn Around

By Lynn U. Stewart

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A ten day visit to Paradise; we were on our way to Ko Lanta Thailand. We were taking in the beauty of the island and beginning our vacation. We had traveled the whole day; it was time to settle in.

René, my new friend, had accompanied me for the Thailand trip. We had spent three days in Bangkok and the next leg of the trip was a five-hour journey to the island. The driver at the airport stopped for supplies at the local store and we were on our way to the ferry. With the New Years day traffic it seemed like waiting an eternity. Finally, we were on our way to the Villa. Once there in darkness, we started to unpack.

Our first night was challenging. While unpacking I took a corner too swiftly and caught my ankle on the edge of my Thai bed. Within seconds, the blood began to ooze from a three inch wound to my shin.

It was 8:00 at night on a hospital-deprived Island, a primitive little oasis in the Andaman Sea. This was the second accident I had had since coming to Bangkok. The first was the step up into a Tuk-Tuk where I scraped my ankle against the sharp threshold and within seconds I was watching a stream of blood sliding down my leg. A visit to Praram 9 Hospital, a Doctors visit and a Tetanus shot got me up and running. I could feel comfortable to go to the villa in peace, as Ko Lanta has no hospital the closest one is in Phuket three hours away. So far I had done all the right things to prepare for our precious winter break. So the second hit to the same leg was a crushing blow.   Not only was it painful, but cuts to the shin are always a tricky place for healing… especially in the tropics.

It took me 30 minutes to regroup, but I was able to wrap up the wound and make our way across the street to Cook Kai, a familiar Thai restaurant known to all of us for over eight years. There we met owner Cook Kai and Nom a friendly waitress who expressed their condolences for my wounded leg. That night I heard about South Lanta clinic, a place fifteen minutes away by Tuk Tuk and with a good reputation.

The next morning René and I made our way to the clinic. After letting four Tuk-Tuks go by, we chose the fifth one with a driver called Sos. Who knew he would be our driver for the next six days. At the clinic we found Dr. Kan and his professional team of healers. Warm and professional, fifteen stitches later, armed with water-proof band-aids, anti-inflammatories with antibiotics in hand I was back in business. We stopped to celebrate my win.   What we found were five fortuitous discoveries that came out of this unfortunate set of circumstances.

  1. Kan was our first doctor to know on our island. American educated in Rhode Island, he was to be our G.P from now on. His stitches were plastic surgeon perfect/world class as was his attitude toward customer service.
  2. The nurses in the clinic had been assigned to me. And every day they would monitor my progress and take care of redressing my wounds.
  3. The clinic was fifteen minutes away and open from 8:00 until 18:00 every day.
  4. They took care of my Bangkok wound and my Ko Lanta stitches all in one go with Dutch insurance to take care of it all.
  5. As a consummate caretaker and leader on the vacation, I had to turn over the care of us to René who did a great job.

Is there a situation in your life that you find hopeless? Try reframing it to find the good in each situation that seems impossible.

The trees of Canon Drive

Expect Miracles Series

By Lynn U. Stewart

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In 1988 we bought Canon Drive. The house was perfect but the thing I liked most was the elegance of the trees… The Dia D’oro trees are from Argentina —their name means “arms outstretched to god” their limbs grow upward paying homage to the creator and they provide shade and stature. There were two trees that were the elders of the property… they were impressive.

A family of three, we found a home that handled all of our needs : two master bedrooms, a centrally located child’s room with two doors to both sides of the house, a workout room and an office with a fire place. A quiet, residential neighborhood, the house spoke of tranquility and well being until one night.

In the middle of a deep sleep there was an enormous thud. Like something had dropped from the heavens.

We looked everywhere but could see nothing out of the ordinary. The next morning, we saw the effects of last night sound, Canon Drive was blocked. A huge limb from the Dia D’oro was blocking the road and cars were lined up unable to pass. We ran to the road and there it was a 100 lb limb stretched across the road keeping cars from passing.

The tree was communicating something to us but what was it? We were not sure. Was it the water depravation of the drought? Was it the dangerous speed of the cars on this short stretch of Canon Drive? Was it the need for more connection — was this tree suffering from neglect? What was the tree trying to say?

“Trees are very special beings. They were put on earth for service. They carry the energy of life force which I would describe as water and light. Trees radiated energy of tranquility they work with energy patterns of the earth and resonate with peaceful energy. Trees will always be part of the planet unless man destroys them. Remember most of all to have fun with them. By remaining in the soft caring part of your heart you’ll get a better understanding” Secrets from the Lives of Trees by Jeffrey Goelitz.

Our tree was speaking to us and we discovered that the property needed some special care and attention.

I called the city and let them know the situation. Although the trees stand tall on their owner’s property, their branches extended across Canon Drive and connect in the sky above the city streets. It is for that reason that the city is in charge of clearing any fallen branches. So, the removal was a task for the city. It was later that afternoon the men came with the chain saw. Three quarts of wood stood neatly piled on the lawn. This was the first time the tree was invited in. The wood was taken to the fireplace. Tt became our Yuletide hearth, a centerpiece of warm glowing flames that Christmas. For the first time we had firewood from our very own property; the tree was giving us warmth. It was the giving tree.

For me this was a premonition of things to come. The house was ailing and I believe this was a harbinger of things to come, somehow the house knew it had some challenges and needed to be uplifted to a new level of consciousness. It wasn’t until ten year later that the house went through a huge renovation. Al the doors and windows were replaced and five areas were refurbished. If that tree could have spoken that day it would have told us of the future but most important to us is that our property had gotten our attention and we had given the house new levels of care. What was most important was the tree was talking to us and for the first time we were listening.

Is there something inanimate that is trying to get your attention? 

Change in direction: A House Miracle

Expect Miracles Series

By Lynn U Stewart

145 Canon Drive SB

Sometimes things happen that shift the direction of life.


Chérie and daughter Jennifer were snuggling one morning. It was a simple Mother daughter talk about life. When Cherie asked the question, “Honey, what do you want to do when you grow up?”
A most startling response came back. “ I want to be just like Madonna and drive around in limousines,”

When Jennifer was three, Chérie combined our households to raise Jennifer as we were both between husbands. Living in Marvista in LA CA at the time, Cherie burst into my room that morning and awakened me with a start: “We have to move!”
After relating the conversation, she asked me where I would like to go. Having five minutes to review the idea, I had no incling about where. I returned the question. Minutes later I reflected on Chérie’s Ph. D program in Santa Barbara. She had liked her graduate school experience and was partial to her intense weekends in the small community two hours north of LA.

On the following Saturday, I met with Allson the realtor in Santa Barbara. She had five houses to show me. When we took a left onto Cannon Drive, I marvelled at the canopied street of Dia Doro Pine Trees lacing the filtered sun.  It was clearly one of the largest streets in the area and the house we parked before was the #145. A period Jefferson southern home, with big white columns, it was a most un-likely style for the sleepy Santa Barbara streets. Spanish red-roofed stucco was the norm for the Gold Coast architecture. Built in 1932, the two story white house, with black shutters had a warm eastern charm with a classic Ionic topped entry surrounded by the sweet smell of Jasmine.

Walking though the front door, it felt an overwhelming sense of home. I noticed the stairs on the left. A large formal living room straight ahead and a small library through the adjacent door, there was an immediate, intimate and friendly feel. The rooms were warm and inviting. The dining room was at the end of the hall and an old fashioned coat closet was tucked under the stairs. As I walked up the white railing-ed staircase, I discovered the first master bedroom with Jenn’s room, just across the hall, the perfect configuration for Mother and daughter. As I wound around the cozy corner just beyond the landing, a bay window opened the view to the garden below. And as I came around the corner, a second door to Jenn’s room became evident. One more corner and there was yet another wing with a two landing staircase with an open atrium revealing yet another sitting room, cozied around a fire place. At the top of the stairs was a second master and a studio/laundry across the small hall. The “piece de resistance” was the sauna nestled away in the corner of the studio. As I pensively walked down the back stair, I discovered space for the office as well. The picture was complete. There was space here for all of us –the house was perfect. I could see it feel it touch it…it all fit!

Mission accomplished, I called Chérie. “I found it, it has a place for each of us. It is it, however there is one tragic flaw, it’s definitely not in the budget. “Knowing that even if the San Anselmo house and the Military house sold we would be missing a chunk of money to make the down payment possible”
So, the challenge of how to afford the dream house was next. Having been disinherited and lost everything at least twice, it seemed like the surrogate family home had been delivered. I simply knew there had to be a way.

On my way back to LA, I asked for guidance and as I drove through Ventura, a series of ideas floated across my screen… and then a blinding flash of the obvious. In the year before, Carl had asked me for assistance in finding a partner with a home into which he could invest. I had introduced him to every investor I knew with the hopes of making the match. On the ride back to LA, I realized we were that investor. Carl, who had been my first call when the move to Santa Barbara was proposed, was the possible third investor. In addition to him living in Santa Barbara, I knew he had been looking to buy. It was in fact his realtor who was driving me all over town in search of our new home.

Carl became our partner, both houses sold and in September of that year we moved to Santa Barbara. It was a dream come true , a pastoral medley of weather, beauty, business and friends. Life seemed to bless the move. Jennifer was extracted from the Madonna world and enrolled in the Crane school, Chérie was traveling and in in grad school and the business made an easy transition up the 101 to the beautiful county on the ocean, With the possibility of Europe and the first Inner Negotiation Workshop in the Netherlands nipping at our heels and our dream home come true, we started another chapter in the flats of Santa Barbara.

Is there a new chapter in the wings for you?

What are the challenges to taking that risk?

Are you willing to find a solution that might be so obvious that is over looked?

 

 

 

Peter, Herb and the Hallowed Halls

Expect Miracles Series

Peter, Herb & The Hallowed Halls of 145 Canon Drive, Santa Barbara

By Lynn U Stewart

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This is a tribute to Herb Gravitz, our dear friend and housemate in Santa Barbara. He has left us and has gone to the other side and we are left with a host of memories that will be emblazed in our consciousness forever. The following is the story about how a total stranger became a housemate and special friend.

In 1989, we two sisters, refurbished an LA home, sold it and moved to Santa Barbara CA. After 18 years of SB living, raising Jennifer (Cherie’s daughter) and getting her launched into her east coast life, we leased our home to vacation renters. For six years, people loved coming to our home. It served wedding parties, graduation weeks of happy UCSB students and family reunions. It was a happy home filled with celebrations and magical memoires. Each guest memorialized their trip to Santa Barbara with some precious leave-behind thank you gift to express their gratitude. Flowers, bottles of wine and baby accessories were welcome gifts to us for our hospitality and willingness to share our home. It was a happy time for all…happy owners and happy vacationers.

When the Santa Barbara fire happened, Cathy and Marc lost their home. With nothing tangible left in the world, they called us to find out if our home was for rent. For the next three years, they too lived happily in our home, until one day, we discovered our beautiful 5,000 square foot Santa Barbara home had a case of termites, wood rot and worst of all MOLD. We were devastated. How could this have happened? How could we not know? What had happened to our wonderful home? Cathy and Marc had to immediately relocate and Cherie and Michael had to move home to take care of business. Five areas of the house were quarantined and needed to be demolished. The house was hacked, and chopped, battered and bruised as every trace of mold and wood rot was carved away. Seeing the sky above and the earth below in important areas was heart breaking.   The downstairs powder room, the kitchen and the family room were carved away and the process was literally earth shattering for all of us.

The house was going through a major overhaul. Forty-three windows were replaced; fourteen doors and three terraces were rebuilt. It was a construction site with plotting, painting and workmen everywhere, around the clock, as they breathed new life into our ailing home. The house had gone through intensive care and was finally declared safe again for living.

The question of why this had happened was answered with the realization that the house needed “family member attention.” The house needed to be first in someone’s life. The series of calamities rendered it first in our lives and all resources and attention were assigned to it. Eight months later the house was back in order with everything updated: a new look of white trim, slate green siding and a Feng Shui red door; the house was stripped, gutted, restored, reroofed and ready to be formally inhabited again.

But now we had to be really selective to find the lucky one(s) to live in our precious newly redone home.

During the redo of the 145 house, Cherie and Michael were enrolled in computer classes at the Apple Store. While sitting at the “Genius Bar” in our State Street Store, they met Dr Peter Levy. As they talked and discussed their Apple histories, also their personal stories were easily shared. M & C recounted the story of the house and their desire to find a “house mate.” They felt the house needed companionship… with its owners, but we were all globally curious leaving little time to come home. It became clear that the house needed a constant companion with a connection with our family, so that we could come back from parts of “the world” on a more frequent basis. When they shared this “want,” all of their friends made fun of their idea. How do you find a housemate? There are renters, family or friends, but it is impossible “to combine these relationships” Everyone laughed except Peter. His respect for M & C was grounded and rooted in the possibility thinking and confirmed their belief that it actually could happen. He heard their dream.

And then the search began…Peter had a psychologist friend Herb who was looking for a new home. Having lived at the beach all of his Santa Barbara life, he had very special needs for his next home. When Peter shared with Herb about his new friends and explained about the house and its magical stories, Herb was intrigued. When he heard the address, Herb was flabbergasted. The 145 Canon Drive house was a dream house for him. As a runner, he had passed the house every day on his circuit. He had asked immediately for an appointment with Michael and Cherie and when they met it was like a home coming for all of them. The sparks of friendship and family were ignited and there was an uncanny connection. Herb spent three weeks making up his mind. He would come and sit in each room and wait for “messages” from the house. He claimed the house spoke to him. His three sons tried to talk him out of it as it was a walk on the wild side. For a single scholarly man with a formidable collection of books and an aquarium, a 5,000 square feet house seemed like a large undertaking. One man living in a five bedroom house seemed slightly over the top and the boys took Herb on three different caravan tours to help dissuade him from his risky choice.

Herb moved in May 2012 and has been living there happily after till July 2015. We the owning family came and visited twice a year and had our own family reunions with Herb and of course Peter, who took over the position of care taking the house, connecting at all times the new family member Herb.

The two men were the best of friends as were all of us. Delighted with our special house mate and friend, the house was once again providing a safe space for all of us to enjoy our lives of travel, teaching and time together in Santa Barbara.

Two weeks ago Herb passed away. It brought up all these memories that I shared with you. In remembrance I can say that Herb brought to me, as my Dutch friends say, ‘miles of smiles, sparkles and twinkles ‘ and I will always remember and love him for that. For me he is a real trooper, a survivor, a scholar, a friend, a housemate and so much more. He is family. I will always honor him as such. Herb has a special connection with the house and with each family member. It is as if he has always been there, and in truth I know now, he is part of the 145 Canon Drive magic way back then and continues to be. Who knows where he – in his cherubic space and sparkles – will show up next? I have sufficiently fastened my seat belt and I’m on “twinkle alert” for he is surely working his magic from this side and the other world.

Lost and Found

Expect Miracles Series

An American Woman Loses Her Bike in Amsterdam

By Lynn U. Stewart

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Have you ever lost something and thought it would be gone forever? Well this is such a story…

I love my bike! One of the great things about living in Amsterdam is that bikes are not only a means of recreation, they are a primary means of transportation. That means that the biking days of childhood never have to end; biking allows me to feel forever young.

Several years ago, I knew I wanted a bike. I did a lot of research. I visited the local bike shop, asked 20 questions, and marveled at all the bikes hanging from the ceiling and mounted on the walls. That’s when I found the one.

It was an Aqua Batavus—a real Dutch bicycle with concealed chains and gears hidden behind a covered case. That meant I could wear a long dress or wide bottom trouser and never have to think about fabric getting into the gears, as they were neatly tucked away. After taking the bike for a spin, I knew I loved it.

Feeling uncertain as to whether I was really going to use a bicycle or not, I chose an infamous Mac-Bike rental for two weeks. However, I asked the bike shop for the “first right of refusal” if someone wanted to buy the Aqua Batavus I loved so dearly—I’d have first choice to purchase it. I wanted to test my commitment to bike riding in Amsterdam. After all, I am an American living in Amsterdam. How safe can riding a bicycle in traffic be? The truth, however, is the bike is king on Amsterdam streets. With bike maps, lanes, and lights, I knew I was in luck—the Amsterdam bikers have right-of-way.

After a week of riding my bike every day and realizing how much fun it was, I called the shop to ask them If they still had my Batavus. I was in luck! I became a proud owner of my first Dutch bicycle that day, fully equip with a license number and insurance for theft.

For five years I peddled around Amsterdam each day, from the grocery store to the pharmacy, to the trams and trains; those two tires took me everywhere. I was proud and happy, careful yet carefree.

And then one day, I was careless. As I unloaded a multitude of things from my bike that day, I left it in front of my door with the keys in the lock. Now if that isn’t fodder for a real live neg-attack I don’t know what is.

Since I teach and train others to build relationships with themselves, I know the difference between taking responsibility and having a big neg-attack. I recognize how stupid it was to leave the keys in the bike in the middle of the city. I also realize that getting mad at myself wasn’t going to bring my bicycle back. So I mourned the loss of my bicycle and thought, “someone must need my bike more than I do.”  I let go of the shame, embarrassment, and carelessness, released myself from being to blame and gave my bike to the universe. With a million bikes on the city streets it was like looking for a needle in a haystack—the bike was gone.

Soon after, I went back to MacBike Rentals, booked another bicycle, and reported its loss to the Amsterdam police.

As further “rationalization,” I told myself since I was going to Bangkok for two months, I would purchase another bicycle upon my return. So… no beat-ups for me. After all, I had owned my bike for five years.

When I returned home from Bangkok I bought a new Batavus bicycle. Two days later, however, I had a message on my voicemail from the Bike Depot. They had found a bike. Incredulous, that this was possible with all of those bikes lost and dredged from the Gracht I couldn’t imagine that this was true. I called the depot and sure enough, they had my bike. Together, with my friend Joy, we went on the bike retrieval hunt and found it there at the police station, one in a million! I signed the papers and took my Aqua Batavus home. I now have two bicycles—one for family, friends, and staff, and one for me. I am the proud owner of two Dutch bikes.

I know that letting go and not taking myself to task for such an unforgiveable mistake opened the door for the bicycle to come back to me. I knew, there must be a lesson in here somewhere…

As Dr. Chérie Carter-Scott says in her New York Times bestselling book, If Life Is a Game These Are the Rules, The Ten Rules for Being Human: Rule #4 “There are no mistakes only lessons.”

Is there anything you have lost and gotten angry with yourself for due to your carelessness? Well I am here to tell you that by letting go, I got my bike back and you can too.

If you like this story and want to read more of the Expect Miracles Series please visit our website at themms.com for workshops and seminars on building a relationship with yourself based on positive attention and self love.

Lynn U Stewart, Director of The MMS Worldwide Institute B.V.