Santa Cruz gave me the gift of a new soul sister named Justine. This little lady (pictured standing next to me in the woods in the photos below) is one powerhouse of a woman, creating her own line of handmade bikinis from environmentally friendly and responsibly sourced fabrics, and on top of that she donates 10% of her profits toward an amazing conservation group called Island Conservation.
Justine and I met on Instagram, and felt an instant connection over serval of my posts on anxiety, and creating a life in honor of creativity and conservation. After emailing our stories and struggles back and forth, I knew I had a friendship waiting to be born with this sister, and I had the joy of staying with her for two days in her little seaside cottage with her Grate Dane and honeybees!
To say that my sweet Justine is a mermaid is actually an understatement- it's as if her soul was carried to land by a mother grey whale. She studied marine biology in college and worked at the Monterey Aquarium, taking care of critically wounded creatures, and on top of that she has experience tagging sharks in Moss Landing! What a lady right?!
So naturally, the first day together we spent tide pooling and exploring the shoreline.
"I poked a tiny orange crab that matched the surrounding kelp, and watching it play dead like creatures do, mused about how often we play dead in our own peculiar fashions" - Carolyn Mary Kleefeld
One of my favorite things about traveling is hearing people's stories, their inspirations, and their struggles. I get lost in other's stories.
Justine's story of her journey and her company have made a huge imapct on me. She walks through the world with bravery, and repeated stated that we have the power to figure out anything and we have the power to create our lives into anything we want.
I was impressed by the way she gave me space to process my fears and struggles with her, and by her genuine care and love of walking with me through this new journey.
I also got to meet one her best friends named Devonne, another powerhouse woman! There are very few people like Devonne in this world, people who allow total freedom of expression, who are unashamably themselves, and who will perceive your heart before you say a word! She has a gift for walking beside people through the darkness of pain, and she is a cheerleader to all! She shared with me her passion for helping people work through their inner struggles through horse therapy...yep, you read that right! Horses and talking about feelings, that's my jam right there! This woman is the real deal!
The three of us went on a small hike through some redwoods, where Devonne kept pointing out the triangle symbol that continually showed itself in the foliage. Such a perfect metaphor.
"The mystery of who we are is invisibly imprinted within every granule of sand and massive mountain. When we recognize the myriad metaphors of Nature's voice, we can be guided by the pulse of these oracular codes." - Carolyn Mary Keelfeld
Oh and I found a heart-shaped river Rock full of saltwater fossils! Haha!
Thank you Justine and Devonne for loving me to the fullest! Thank you for feeding me, pouring me wine, sharing your hearts with me, and for helping me through car trouble. You two are such glorious lights! Can't wait to see you both again soon! Keep shining ✨