Where to Buy Gemstones Near Seattle
Energy Work, Self-Care, Uncategorized

“Where can I buy gemstones near Seattle?” A guide to some of my favorite local shops.

where to buy gemstones

Photo courtesy of Kira auf der Heide

Want to buy gemstones but need to try holding them first? Buy local.

When I first moved to Seattle I remembered thinking, “Where are all the gem stores?” It took me a while to find all the hidden treasure – but it’s there, if you know where to look! Shopping local is a win-win, as it supports our local economy and allows you to choose the right stone for you. Here are some of my favorite places to buy gemstones near Seattle:

NW Crystals

This small shop in Ballard is run by women; and they are really lovely people! It’s obvious how much they love their stones — and that’s uniquely what they sell. They offer some unusual and beautiful pieces (hello, black moonstone!). Their selection is mostly on the small to medium size. Want to support local, women- and POC-owned business? Buy gemstones here first. (Also, they run a really good sale that is often unannounced online unless you’ve been in the store and heard it from the owners first….)

Gem Heaven

I think I’ve gotten lost trying to find this place every time I’ve gone there. Even now I can’t completely tell you the easiest path to finding it. I know I take the stairs next to the ‘fish’ stand at the Market, and then head down… two flights? And out towards the south-east side of the market. Almost before getting to the door to the outside, the shop is on the north-east side of the corridor. Maybe don’t follow my directions so I don’t get you lost either! This is also a pretty small shop but it’s cram-packed! They’ve got jewelry and pocket stones, as well as some really nice medium-sized specimens. The owner is very knowledgable and happy to talk shop with you. The prices are pretty reasonable for Seattle as well.

Zenith Supply

You’d never expect to find such a varied selection in a massage supply store – but, there it is! They’ve got a lot of small to medium pieces, and, if I recall correctly, some jewelry as well. They also have some stone candleholders and salt lamps.

Agate Designs

If you’re looking for larger pieces, or some quite refined jewelry pieces, this is your shop! They also have bins in the front of some really nice pocket to slightly-larger sized stones. Their selenite and some of their other pieces are well-priced; but many of items will cost you a pretty penny.

East West Bookstore

Another surprising one – to find gemstones in a bookstore; but, there they are! The prices here are also on the steeper side; but their selection is growing. And it’s good to know they often have a Chinook book coupon that will get you 20% off. And if you join their newsletter or attend a number of their seminars/classes, you’ll also get coupons in your inbox or while you’re there. They have a lot of pocket stones, some very nice medium-sized pieces, and a varied selection of gemstone pendulums. I got my rose quartz that’s in the office there – and everyone comments on how lovely it is!

Jerry’s Rock and Gem

If you’re ready to buy a honker of a jewelry piece, or some nice slabs of rock, this is your shop! It’s a bit of a journey from Seattle – but well worth it! Jewelry is quite expensive, but the small rock and large slab selection is unusual and great.

Earthlight Gems

I’ll admit I haven’t made it out to this store in Kirkland; but I hope to one day in the near future. So, I’m adding it for anyone who might be interested to take the trip out there!

Where do you buy gemstones in Seattle?

Did I miss a place you’d suggest? Let me know in the comments!

Self-Care to Make the Pain Stop

Where do I press to make the pain stop? (Online resources for self-care.)

Self-Care to Make the Pain StopPhoto by Andre Hunter

Manual Self-Care Techniques to Make the Pain Stop

Know when to get help

[perfectpullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”lightgrey” class=”” size=”28″]If you’ve experienced trauma or are experiencing new pain, please get it checked out.[/perfectpullquote]

If you’re experiencing a new pain or you recently experienced a trauma of which you’re not sure whether or not it’s related – please, get it checked out. It’s always better to be safe than sorry. I am a firm believer in having a wellness team, as our bodies are magic and complex – in my opinion, there is no one-size-fits-all modality for treating all conditions. Personally, I have a Reiki and massage therapist, non-force chiropractor, acupuncturist, herbalist, and naturopath all on my team. This doesn’t mean I/you have to see all of them, all the time. It means when you have an issue crop up, you know whom to see to give you the best results for your needs in that moment.

Make the Pain Stop with Acupressure

That all said, here are some awesome tools to work with once you know it’s safe to do so! Presto Pain Go is an online resource for selecting acupressure points for self-massage, to relieve pain.  Simply select the part of your body in which you’re experiencing pain (done by picture), then press where indicated. Photos with ‘x-ray vision of the bone’ make it easy to use. This is one of the safer options for self-care. (Note to self: You can also use a tuning fork instead of your fingers or other tool.)

Make the Pain Stop with Trigger Point Release

The online “Trigger Point & Referred Pain Guide” is another invaluable resource if you want to click on where it hurts to see probable muscular suspects. It takes a certain amount of caution and finesse to release these ‘knots’ but it’s so worth it once you do! (Note to self: Depending on where you’re treating you can use anything from a child’s 25 cent rubber ball, to a tennis ball, lacrosse ball, or specialized tool.)

Because of the possible risks of releasing trigger points when done improperly, I encourage you to discuss this with a medical provider first before trying. For more information on the subject, I recommend Davies’ book, “The Trigger Point Therapy Workbook: Your Self-Treatment Guide for Pain Relief.”

Michelle Schrader, Local Photographer
Self-Care, Uncategorized

New in the Office: Michelle Schrader Photography Canvas Art and 5×5 Prints

Michelle Schrader Photography
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“Most people have a positive response to something – whether it’s music, painting, poetry, trees, animals, the sea, mountains or whatever. So sometimes it may be necessary to turn your attention deliberately to something you enjoy, something you have a good response to, and that will introduce another element into your experience. A more energetic, exuberant element that will help you to take a more creative approach to life’s ups and downs.” —Ratnaghosa

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Featured Artist: Michelle Schrader Photography

If you haven’t been in the office recently, you’ve been missing out! Reflecting on beauty is a heart-opening exercise; and I’m delighted to share with you that local artist, Michelle Schrader, has been offering her visual healing to folks coming through the space. Currently we have four prints hanging and a number of 5×5 inch prints for sale. Her work celebrates the natural beauty of the West Coast and plays with the warmth of light cast in oft-overlooked spaces.

To see and/or purchase her work online, visit her Square Market store, Michelle Schrader Photography. You can also view and purchase the canvas prints “Carved Head,” “escape,” “Ghost Town 12×12″,” and “blue door” at the office, as well as many of her 5×5 prints.

Follow Michelle on Instagram or Pinterest; or contact her directly by phone (206.639.7326) or email, moonsongmichelle@gmail.com.

Reflect on Nature for Stress and Anxiety Relief

trees for stress reductionDid you know looking on nature isn’t just a nicety? It directly impacts our body’s stress response. Recent research out of University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign and University of Hong Kong found that even just watching videos of trees was enough to reduce stress and anxiety in subjects. The greater tree coverage there was in the imagery, the stronger the calming effect. This is so powerful for folks living in an urban environment, or unable to leave their homes or bed due to illness!

Remember, we don’t always have to be with what we love to cultivate the mood of love in our lives. The brain is amazing this way! We can start with simply imagining it – bringing what we love to mind through recollection.

What might you surround yourself with at work or at home to help you stay in the mood of ease and love? To what might you turn your attention to lift your spirits and remind you of greater possibilities in life? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!


affirmations, energy work, Uncategorized

Affirmations: “How a password changed my life” (Article, Medium)

The Power of Affirmations (Positive words collage for optimists (CC))


Say what you mean

Our words carry an intention, a vibration. Our speech and our actions are often preceded by a thought. In this way our thoughts are constantly striking us like tuning forks, causing our bodies to resonate with the sound of their intention. “I love you, no matter what.” Just saying and hearing those words can be transformative as they deliver the message of acceptance, forgiveness, and hope. “You should [fill in the blank].” Immediately, before we even get to the ‘what’ of that sentence, the vibration can come in strong sending the message of rejection, shame and insufficiency. Our choice of words can have a big impact! With this all in mind (no pun intended!) I loved an article I read relatively recently: How a password changed my life.

Change your life

In the article, author Estrella writes about the bane that is constantly changing password requirements. His frustration, I think, is known by all at this point — ‘this site requires 7 letters, this one 8, this one a special character, this one only these special characters, an uppercase letter, a lowercase letter, a new one every 30 days — that’s different from your last 5.’ The list of requirements go on and on and on! I loved the simplicity of his new approach: Turn this aggravation into an opportunity to change your life. Let your password be your affirmation.

Intention is direction

I tell my Reiki students one of the most important things you can do is be mindful of the path — don’t let fear tactics distract you from your intention to walk the path of love. I tell them it’s like riding a bicycle or driving a car: As soon as you start rubbernecking, you’ve already started to drive off the road. So reminding yourself of what’s true for you, what’s important for you, and/or simply what you wish the world would say to you, this is one of the most important and helpful things you can do for yourself. Author Estrella used his passwords to direct his attention and intention towards forgiveness, quitting smoking, a trip to Thailand, and more. Every time he used the password, he affirmed his intention to do just that:

  • “Forgive@h3r”
  • “Quit@smoking4ever”
  • “Save4trip@thailand”

It’s such a simple technique for such powerful outcome! (If you’re wondering, yes, he successfully did all those things and more!)

Your practice

What’s something you wish the world would say to you more often? Put it in a password and let yourself hear it over and over and over again until it sinks in!

Have a success story you’d like to share? Put it in the comments!

Animal Communication: What if we could talk to animals?
Energy Work, Uncategorized

What if you could talk to animals?

Reblogged from StarfireHealingWorks.com:

What if you could talk to animals?

This subject has been coming up a lot in my conversations with people lately, so I thought I would post some thought-provoking content and links to resources for folks.

“We can!”

The first thing that came to mind when my nephew said to me in passing that he wished people could talk to animals was, “But we can!” Of course, he was thinking he would use these important skills to let his dog know that the smell of his farts are unbearable. [Awkward pause.] Nonetheless, I like to think his sentiment was still genuine in simply wanting to connect with the beings in one’s life. 🙂 With that in mind, I was elated to introduce him to an abbreviated video that had been making the rounds (to see the full-length video on Anna’s great work, see: Animal Communication):

Communication: More than words

I think it’s important to stretch our minds and question what we think we know is certain. The truth is, we only know what we know, and that’s very little in light of all possibility. Obviously, words communicate most clearly for us humans; but there’s still a lot that can be communicated beyond words, like when a friend gives us that look of appreciation and love, or when a dog’s loved one comes home after being away for 6 months:

Most animal communicators explain their ability as “telepathy.” Telepathy is simply the communication of ideas transcendent to words. If you’ve been reading this blog, you might have learned extrasensory perception can come through various means, such as clairvoyance or clairsentience. Regardless of the means, this telepathic experience is simply the connection to what is alive — communicating by way of the web of life which is common and shared among all beings, animal or other.

Ways to learn

There are a number of folks offering educational opportunities in interspecies communication:

Your practice

Consider simply inviting the question, “If the animals I(‘ve) encounter(ed) in my life have thoughts and emotions, what would I (have) consider(ed) important to communicate to them or to learn from them?”

Energy Work, Uncategorized

Mental Illness & Spiritual Awakenings | Reiki Energy Work for Everyday People


Shaman, Mental Illness, and Spiritual Awakenings

What a Shaman Sees In a Mental Hospital | Spirit Science | Reiki Energy Work for Everyday People.

In the shamanic view, mental illness signals ‘the birth of a healer,’ explains Malidoma Patrice Somé. Thus, mental disorders are spiritual emergencies, spiritual crises, and need to be regarded as such to aid the healer in being born.

Mental Illness: Breakdown or Breakthrough?

A friend recently posted this article, What a Shaman See’s [sic] In a Mental Hospital, published on Spirit Science. The article explores the subject of mental illness and sensitivity as seen through the different cultural lenses of “breakdown” or “breakthrough” [of a spiritual awakening]. Dagara elder, Dr. Malidoma Patrice Somé (PhD),  shares his thoughts and experience in seeing these different treatment of mental illness in West Africa and in the the US.

Empowerment in the face(s) of schizophrenia

The first time I was introduced to this idea that schizophrenia is just the unmitigated experience of the spiritual in the physical realm was during graduate school in my patient counseling class. Lucky for me, my instructor was both a counselor and an energy worker/intuitive; she had plenty of first-hand experience seeing the many ‘unseen’ beings that came in with clients. She talked boldly of a time when she shared this knowledge with a client, letting him know he was not alone in his experience. Most importantly, she was the first person to teach this client about boundaries; and doing so empowered him to manage the situation from a place of strength and support.

Managing sensitivity

Many of my Reiki students start off considering themselves to be ‘insensitive’ to subtle energy. I, myself, started off thinking I was a “dull” type — unable to sense energy at all. Interestingly enough, however, many of these people (myself included) would say they are more sensitive than others when it comes to feeling overstimulated by sound, conversation, information, etc in daily life. Coincidence? Not really.

Sensitive is sensitive; it’s a gift. It’s the gift of caring, noticing, listening. Managing it is a skill — the skill of saying when to listen,when to say “I can’t” or “No, thank you”, and/or when the most caring thing you can do for someone else is to take care of yourselfbefore responding to a person or situation. In my opinion this is the big difference between what we call mental illness and what we call energy work: A sense of boundary and autonomy.

All the more reason to study with a teacher!

Your Practice This Week

Reflect on your commute to work or around town — have you ever passed someone you wrote off as “crazy”? Would your attitude towards them change if you believed they were communicating with an actual entity? How might you feel if in talking to everyone you know around you, no one experienced a shared reality with you? (Intense!)


Eye condition makes man hallucinate tapestries and monks (BBC News, Audio)

Eye'll be Seeing You

I came across this article on Charles Bonnet Syndrome today by the BBC News, “Eye condition makes man hallucinate tapestries and monks.” This was the first time I had heard of the condition and its symptom, hallucinations.

Charles Bonnet Syndrome

Charles Bonnet Syndrome (CBS) refers to the  the visual hallucinations some folks experience in cases of visual acuity loss or visual field loss. The condition was first noted in the late 1700s by Swiss naturalist and philosopher, Charles Bonnet, but didn’t earn its official diagnosis until the 1930s. Currently it affects 300,000 people a year.

In 2009, Mary Lou Jackson, MD, of the Harvard School of Medicine–affiliated Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary (Boston, Massachusetts), cited that CBS, while often underdiagnosed, actually affects 10% to 38% of patients with visual impairment. According to research collated by the Royal National Institute of Blind People (UK), three in five individuals experiencing serious sight loss may develop this condition.

Hallucinations in CBS

In the BBC clip, a man describes his experience of seeing everything from a familiar cartoon face to an Indian tapestry in central vision, skulls, silver swirls, a stained glass window, Tibetan monks and dancing green and/or red men. He explains the visions tend to be more prevalent under conditions when the lights are low, things are calm and quiet, and when he is feeling a bit more tired. He mentions a “vision change” that can cue an oncoming hallucination.

Tibetan Buddhist skeleton dancing in reds and greens.

Artwork at the Tibetan Buddhist Boudhanath Monastery in Nepal, ⓒ Rebecka Wolfe (with permission). Pretty reminiscent of this patient’s experience, no? Skull, dancing, Tibetan, greens and reds…

Western medicine does not know the cause of the hallucinations; though researchers M.L. Jackson, MD and Joseph Ferencz, MD PhD write the condition is “most commonly attributed to deafferentation or lack of true visual input into the brain, which causes a release phenomenon similar to phantom limb symptoms after amputation.” Differential diagnosis includes assessing the patient’s ability to distinguish that which is “real” from that which is not, even if only explained to them after the event. As to be expected, not all individuals hallucinations are a sequela of sight loss; there can also be mental health concerns.

Visions in Energy Work

In the world of energy work, seeing visions is known as clairvoyance. Listening to this man’s audio journal, I was struck by the similarity. Clairvoyants see what to some may be called a hallucination; and they know that it is both real in its message, while not necessarily existing as “real” on this plane. Clairvoyants work over time to stay mindful through the experience while staying grounded in their body and consciousness on this plane. We also often choose lower lighting, and meditative conditions (read: “calm and quiet”) to help us see multidimensionally.

Johann Heinrich Füssli 063

Tiresias, the blind prophet of Thebes, famous for clairvoyance in Greek mythology

I wonder, what would happen if these folks with Charles Bonnet Syndrome chose to study with an energy worker or Shamanic practitioner? What if they learned to work and play with what arose? Would they gain deeper insight into their lives and experience? Perhaps what Western medicine calls a “syndrome” is really a gift, honed with guidance.

Visions and Blindness

Blindness and clairvoyance have long gone hand in hand in history. (My brain always goes to the Odyssey and Clash of the Titans….) The thought is when the external vision grows dim, inner vision is allowed to arise. We spend a lot time deeply enmeshed in our outer senses; it’s easy to miss the subtle. That’s why we energy workers practice!

Not only can visions be suggestive of possible outcomes to the current stream of events (as is the case in prophecy), but more importantly, in my opinion, clairvoyance allows for deeper insight into one’s nature and the nature of reality. It allows us to dream bigger than we could ever think up; it allows us to connect more deeply with what’s truly alive for us in our hearts and in our bodies.

Managing Visions

I agree with Jackson and Ferencz that it’s imperative one be deeply grounded in our common reality and in one’s being (my terms) for experiencing visions to be a safe and comfortable experience. Without a solid foundation, a person can get disconnected from the self and feel split in consciousness. This leads to a sense of being out of control, and unsafe. With that, comes a whole slew of other things.

For anyone already experiencing hallucinations or visions, unsure of where to start, I recommend working with a good counselor, energy worker, and meditation instructor. If your ability to function in daily life is impaired, I’d recommend starting with seeing a psychiatrist.

Your Practice

Reflect on your experience; have you ever seen, heard, or felt something that wasn’t “there”? Does daydreaming count? (Why or why not?)


Definitions, Uncategorized

What is the Human Energy Field?

The human energy field

The human energy field
So far, I’ve mentioned energy work is that which works on the human energy field (HEF). The aura is an aspect of the HEF, often depicted as rings around a person, as in the center image above. Each ring relates to a different aspect of the human experience and is identified differently in name and number, depending on the system of energy work  referenced. It would be easy to think the rings around a person are the field, like layers of an onion (see left image above); however, the layers are not separate; they do not sit atop one another. They diffuse down into one another.

The subtle bodies

ice cube party
I suggest you think of the human energy field as consciousness in different states, the aura like water. We recognize “water” when we see ice, a river or fog; while we also recognize that water in each of these states will act differently. Similarly, the ‘layers’ of the human energy field are not separate entities from one another, but rather different states of the same element: The human experience. These layers are often referred to as the subtle bodies.

The subtle bodies comprise the entirety of human experience – from how we experience ourself in the world as a separate ‘self’ in physical form to the possibility of what we are beyond a perceived ‘self.’ I suggest you think of this range of experience as the difference between ice and steam respectively. It’s important to remember that while ice holds its form and appears solid/fixed, it has the potential to be shaped into anything at all, under the right circumstances. As we create and recreate our sense of self, the layers of our human energy field, or subtle bodies, communicate down and affect changes in the form of our expression– spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and physically. The neat thing is, they can also communicate up.

Affecting change

The easiest starting place when it comes to practicing energy work is starting with the most common elements of human experience: form, emotion, and thought. You can think of our physical form is more like ice in its fixed-ness, and our thoughts more like steam. If we concentrate our thoughts on something, as if trapping steam in a  pot by using a lid, eventually it condenses back to liquid (and back to ice if we chill it). This would be like the use of mental affirmations. By repeating the same thoughts over and over again, they eventually start condensing down into our emotions and our actions. Likewise, someone with low self-esteem and a lacking sense of autonomy could benefit from doing crunches and plank poses–physically strengthening the physical form to send the message up to the emotions and to the thoughts, “I am strong! I am resilient! I am healthy!”

Your practice this week

Reflect on what you might be telling yourself on a habitual basis that no longer serves your highest good in your life. Do you feel ready to let this thought go? (Yes, no, and maybe are all important and useful answers to that question!)

Definitions, energy work, Uncategorized

What Are Energy Work Practices?

Author and inventor Dr. Lin Yutang wrote in his 1937 bestseller, The Importance of Living, “…[A]ll human happiness is sensuous happiness”(125).  He goes on to explain our capacity for enjoying the “positive joys of life” is inextricably tied to increased sensibility of our senses, and our full use of them.

To illustrate his point, Dr. Lin lists Chin’s Thirty-Three Happy Moments, suggesting that “the truly happy moments of human life [are those] moments in which the spirit is inextricably tied up with the senses”(130). You’re probably not surprised that I agree! (Why else would I start my post with this?)

Energy Work is Mundane Work

People often confuse energy work with something ‘beyond’ the ordinary, human experience. Or people think it’s something to ‘attain,’ or something mystical. Most often people think energy is separate from the body; and therefore consider the physical simply crude, unnecessary material they’re just waiting to shed to get back to the ‘good stuff.’

But, while energy permeates and animates physical matter, the physical experiences Spirit’s sublime nature. The physical interprets energy, and affects the world with energy. That’s potent stuff! Without the ability to sense, energy could not know itself. For this reason, while we are in the world, knowing we are not of it affords us a unique opportunity to care for and appreciate our vessel (the physical body), while experiencing Spirit in action.

Can Energywork Be Bodywork? (And Vice Versa?)

When we talk about types of energy work, some practices might fit under the category of bodywork, while others might be considered emotional release techniques, mental concentration practices, or in some cases spiritual or religious practice. At first glance someone with no background in energy work might think, “Hold on a minute, this can’t be right! Isn’t energy work stuff just ‘woo woo,’ waving hands in the air?” (I’m reminded of Christopher Walken’s trivial psychic skit….) No, it’s not. Remember, I defined energy work as any practice that works with our body’s energy; and if you understand that our spirit is inextricably tied to our body sense-experience, you’ll understand energy work in practice may involve the body, mind, and/or emotions.

A Short List of Energy Work Practices

What Are Some Energy Work Practices

There are countless practices that involve energy work I could name in this post today. Nonetheless, I’d like to introduce you to a short list so you can start to see that you’ve likely already been introduced to energy work, and perhaps have even been practicing it already. What makes the energy work a stronger aspect to physical, emotional or mental practice? Intention.

You’ll notice I slipped intention work and affirmations under perceiving energy. (Pretty much all the things on this mind map can be swapped from one side to the other.) I did this intentionally (ha!) as a reminder that sometimes we can learn things about what we really think or feel deep down when we try on a new, positive affirmation or intention. Resistance can crop up saying, “Yea, right! I don’t deserve that!” etc.

My today’s short list includes:

  • Acupuncture
  • Bowenwork
  • Dream work (including interpretation and lucid dreaming)
  • Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)
  • ESP (including clairvoyance, clairaudience, clairgustance, clairsentience, claircognizance, and “medical intuition”)
  • Feng Shui
  • Homeopathy (including flower, gem and environmental essences)
  • Intention work (including affirmations)
  • Journeying (including to the Akashic records, Lower World, Middle World, Upper World)
  • Meditation
  • Pranic healing
  • Psychic awareness (including psychometry)
  • Qigong
  • Reiki
  • Rosen Method
  • Shamanism (including soul retrieval)
  • Yoga

Your practice this week:

Reflect on a time in your life when you felt most alive, connected and ‘in the flow.’ How did you feel in your body? How was the state of your mind; and what were the circumstances under which you had this experience?

Has an energy work practice greatly impacted your life or growth? I’d love to hear your story in the comments!