Want the Newsletter in your Inbox?

 

 

Dirt Path Publishing is now sending its newsletter, Dirt Path Press, exclusively via email or mobile device. Please go to the “Contact” page to sign up for this free, thought-provoking and inspiring newsletter published with great care by our staff in order to bring a bit of our mission to your inbox each and every month.

Volume 2, Issue 4: Practicing the Art of Play

 Dirt Path Press

May 2012

Practicing the Art of Play

Greetings!     

Did you notice that we missed last month? Between March’s call to Put on Our Own Oxygen Mask First and May’s call to Practice the Art of Play we seemed to have missed April all together. We’ll call that “Accepting that We do the Best We Can, 1; Boundaries that Stress Us Out, 0.”

It seems the concept of Rest and Play are on the minds of many great thinkers these days, so we thought we’d tackle one at a time: Play. Play, it seems, opens our receptors to all kinds of great things, the likes of improved health, happier mental disposition, and even allows us a window into our true nature. It turns out who we really are can be found in who we were in our childhood, when mortgages and interest rates and profits were something for adults to deal with. Us? We just played. When I think about who I was at five years old, the animals and the school supplies and the card games and the love of my grandmother’s garden…it’s not only who I am, but also who I want to be.

This month’s “What We’re Reading” tackles the issue of greatness by way of practice. While we may be born with certain dispositions, none of us is born great at anything. The difference between good and great comes down to one fundamental thing: meaningful practice. What if, we wonder, we combine practice and play? Might the curmudgeon-ness of our growing up being tempered by the deep practice of play? I, for one, am going to give it a go.

In gratitude for the gift of play and the time I allow myself to engage in it,

Nicole Lusiani

Founder, Dirt Path Publishing


What We’re Watching

Want to spent a joyful hour (or 3) on youtube? Search “Animals Playing Together” and you’ll have yourself a ball. While there were several great videos to choose from (including a mesmerising one with a horse and a dog, and another we felt particularly drawn to because it showed the absolute sweetness of a well-raised pit bull), in the end we could not tear ourselves away from the delight of a baby’s laugh and the joy of playing with her dog. Baby, we feel the same way!

 

What We’re Reading

Got 10,000 hours? According to The Talent Code, a bestseller written by Daniel Coyle, that’s what it takes to achieve real success. Although it may seem daunting, it’s actually quite liberating because, as it turns out, greatness isn’t born, it’s made. Coyle draws on both neurology and research to uncover this simple reality: to allow ourselves to practice deeply and meaningfully is to allow ourselves the ability to be great. 
Click here to learn more about the book.
This Month’s Story

This month’s story takes us to one funny lady to show us what happens when we turn frustration inside out. Jenny Lawson’s blog makes us laugh out loud and this one, “And that’s Why You Should Pick your Battles,” might be the best of the bunch. Rated PG-13 for language, we give it an A+ for Play.

Read the Story
About Us
Dirt Path Publishing is a company dedicated to helping people find alternative ways to deal with life’s everyday challenges. Inspired by our founder and her beloved dog, Mario, we have abandoned life’s concrete path of certainty for a dirt path, including all the joy and chaos it brings. We’re proud to have the Dirt Path Press as our premier publication and look forward to full length works in 2012.
Dirt Path Publishing   *   2012   *   All Rights Reserved
P.O. Box 2623, Alameda, CA. 94501     *     510.239.7157

Volume 2, Issue 3: Putting on Your Own Oxygen Mask

 

 Dirt Path Press

March 2012

Putting on Your Own Oxygen Mask

Greetings!     The motto at Dirt Path Press this month is “Put your own mask on first!” We are all so busy taking care of others that we forget to take care of ourselves; the irony is, unless we take care of ourselves, there is nothing left for other people.

For the last several weeks my husband has been asking me to accept “good enough,” to be gentle with myself, to do what feels counterproductive in order to be productive. I heard the words and my weepy eyes told me they were true, but I couldn’t figure out how to make it happen. Until I did. Read this month’s story to find out about my baby steps toward asking for help.

I’m hoping those metaphorical baby steps will lead me to literal steps, the kind of steps that come with exercise. I just found out some amazing things about a person’s body and soul that made me think I wasn’t hopeless after all, and that it is possible even as I creep up on 40 years old to be healthier than I ever have before. I’ve been passing this book around for months and now, I pass it on to you.

In gratitude for the ability to (finally start) taking care of myself,
Nicole Lusiani
Founder, Dirt Path Publishing

Quote of the Month     Don’t compromise yourself. You are all you’ve got. Janis Joplin
What We’re Watching

We at Dirt Path Press have admired Ellen DeGeneres for a long time. Anyone willing to risk their career for the freedom to speak her truth is our kind of girl. This video of her standing tall in the face of bigoted intimidation reminds us that there is no better way to take care of yourself than to stand up for yourself.     Watch the video
What We’re Reading

On our nightstands this month is Deepak Chopra’s Reinventing the Body, Resurrecting the Soul. Did you know that approximately every six months you have essentially a whole new body because almost every cell has regenerated? That means no matter what condition we’ve allowed our bodies to tolerate, we constantly have the opportunity to right the wrongs and start anew. Full of biological and spiritual insights, we encourage you to check it out. Click here to learn more about the book.
This Month’s Story     Is “fine” my aspiration? One day, if one of my sons was working as hard as I am right now and was offered even the most minor of breaks, would I want him to say, “No thanks, I’m fine?”   Read the Story
About Us
Dirt Path Publishing is a company dedicated to helping people find alternative ways to deal with life’s everyday challenges. Inspired by our founder and her beloved dog, Mario, we have abandoned life’s concrete path of certainty for a dirt path, including all the joy and chaos it brings. We’re proud to have the Dirt Path Press as our premier publication and look forward to full length works in 2012.

Dirt Path Publishing   *   2011-2012   *   All Rights Reserved

P.O. Box 2623, Alameda, CA. 94501     *     510.239.7157

Volume 2, Issue 2: What Serves You?

 

 Dirt Path Press

February 2012

What Serves You?

 

Greetings!

At Dirt Path Press we’ve spent the last month considering what’s really important to us and then comparing that with how we are spending our time and energy. We found it quite revealing; so much so, it inspired us to write this issue.

As we enter the month of Saint Valentine, I’m left to consider another question: As our lives busy with the care and love of others, when do we figure out how to care and love ourselves? My answer this month comes in the form of letting go what doesn’t serve me. The number one thing not serving me right now is the guilt that comes from having a messy house. Read this month’s story to find out more.

If you were to have a conversation with your younger self, might you discuss something along the lines of embracing what’s important and releasing what’s not? I surely would. This month’s “What We’re Reading” section includes a book inspired by the wisdom that comes with age and the lessons learned along the way. I highly recommend it.

In gratitude for what’s important,
Nicole Lusiani
Founder, Dirt Path Publishing

Quote of the Month

Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing is like shoveling the walk before it stops snowing.

~Phyllis Diller

What We’re Watching

We find Martha Beck, author and life coach, a pure delight. Her books and magazine columns inspires us each and every time we read them. Come to find out, she now has a “channel” on YouTube as well. In this “episode” she discusses a powerful old story about rocks and sand. As you consider how to find time for what’s important, we think it’s worth  checking out.

Doing Important Things

What We’re Reading

What I Know Now, Letters to My Younger Self edited by Ellyn Spragins, asked dozens of extraordinary women to write letters to their younger selves. “Women who, despite their current success, once needed guidance to fulfill their own personal dreams and desires.” It’s a great read for people who have said to themselves, “If I only knew then what I know now…” In other words, its a great read for all of us.

Click here to learn more about the book.

This Month’s Story“I take a deep breath and turn to the mess in the kitchen left over from last night’s dinner and see my husband out of the corner of my eye, standing in the door way, eyes twinkling over his coffee.”

Read the Story

About Us
Dirt Path Publishing is a company dedicated to helping people find alternative ways to deal with life’s everyday challenges. Inspired by our founder and her beloved dog, Mario, we have abandoned life’s concrete path of certainty for a dirt path, including all the joy and chaos it brings. We’re proud to have the Dirt Path Press as our premier publication and look forward to full length works in 2012.
Dirt Path Publishing   *   2011-2012   *   All Rights Reserved

Volume 2, Issue 1: Service

 


 Dirt Path Press
Volume 2, Issue 1

Service

Hello 2012!

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s family asks all of us to honor his work and his ultimate sacrifice by spending the national holiday in service. We cannot improve our own lives unless we also work to improve the lives of others; as far as Dirt Path Publishing is concerned, what better way to set the tone for a blessed 2012 than a commitment to serving others? Our intention to do just that begins with this year’s first issue of the Dirt Path Press, dedicated to the theme of service.

New to the Dirt Path Press this month is a section called, “What We’re Reading.” While our intention is to one day feature our own writers in this section, until then we bring to you what inspires us to stay on our dirt path, as opposed to following the masses down a concrete road of certainty. Let’s face it, that “certainty” hasn’t brought us many rewards in recent years; maybe we all need to try a different route to happiness?

This month’s story is about a full circle moment that helped me remember service comes in many packages. For quite a while I’ve been struggling with the idea that I don’t do enough to serve others in my community. Just recently I’ve come to realize that I’m actually living and working in service every day. Whether it’s expressing gratitude to your waitress or patient with the barista or giving your loved ones a bit more of your undivided attention, this month I ask you to consider walking in the world with the intention to serve. Might your life (and our world) be better as a result?

In gratitude for the ability to serve,

Nicole Lusiani
Founder, Dirt Path Publishing

Quote of the Month

“Like anybody, I would like to live a long life. Longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will. And He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over. And I’ve seen the promised land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people will get to the promised land.”

I’ve Been To The Mountaintop,
April 3, 1968
Martin Luther King, Jr., the night before his assassination.
What We’re Watching

This short video helps us remember that our life is our own, but it’s certainly not only about us. Feeling down? Feeling tired? Feeling overwhelmed? Instead of sinking inward into negativity, push yourself out toward serving others. What you experience might just surprise you.

Get Over Yourself–Serving Others Serves You
What We’re Reading

The Power of Serving Others is a powerful book for those feeling the pull to do more with their lives but feel overwhelmed by where to begin and/or can’t figure out how to either incorporate it into their already busy lives. In the words of the authors, It’s about serving others—looking at others as people whocould use a hand. “It’s about looking at our hands and realizingthat they already contain what others need.”

Click here for a free excerpt of the book.
This Month’s Story

“There are not words to describe what it feels like to be surrounded by people whose support changed the trajectory of my life as well as people who picked up the charge to support me in the work I now do in response.”
Read the Story

About Us
Dirt Path Publishing is a company dedicated to helping people find alternative ways to deal with life’s everyday challenges. Inspired by our founder and her beloved dog, Mario, we have abandoned life’s concrete path of certainty for a dirt path, including all the joy and chaos it brings. We’re proud to have the Dirt Path Press as our premier publication and look forward to full length works in 2012.

Dirt Path Publishing   *   2011-2012   *   All Rights Reserved

Survey for Dirt Path Press


Volume 1, Issue 9 Minding Our Own Business

 

Dirt Path Press

 

Volume 1, Issue 9

September 2011 

 

                        Minding Our Own Business lgo_blk

Greetings!

Welcome to the ninth issue of Dirt Path Press, an online newsletter written for anyone willing to tell the truth about life’s everyday challenges.

In this month’s story, I make a confession: I’ve always got my nose in somebody else’s business. Why, you ask? Read on and find out what intention lurks behind the busy-bodies in your lives.

This month’s OurStory reminds us that keeping tabs on each other may not always be a bad thing. Ten years ago our nation came together in tragedy. The tragedy still strikes a chord in our hearts but I wonder, how many of us remember the part about how we came together? For days and weeks afterward we watched out for our neighbors and their children because we were struck with the heartbreaking reminder that, if nothing else, at least we have each other. I don’t want to feel the way I felt that day ever again, except for that part.

 

The dirt path issues its call for people to keep talking about things that really matter. If you like what you see here please pass Dirt Path Press on to your friends. Next month we’re going to run the first annual “Get Your Friends on the Path” campaign; why not get a head start?

(Trying to live) In gratitude for the endless quest to mind my own damned business,
Nicole Lusiani 

Founder, Dirt Path Publishing  

 View our profile on LinkedIn  Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter

Honey, if it ain’t your tail, don’t wag it.
~Author Unknown

 

 

This Month’s Story 

myheadshot

Dresser Drawers

 

“…It’s easier to fuss and fume over somebody else’s slobbery, somebody else’s laziness, somebody else’s anything rather than dealing with the fact that I am no better than they are.”

Read the Story

Ourstory

In the spirit of NOT minding our own business, Dirt Path Publishing honors those who recognize only in coming together are we a stronger America.

 

quilt  

 

“The light of social justice flickers in brave corners, but it fizzles in isolation.

What would happen if that light shone in a bold constellation?

We’d create a movement.”

-The Groundswell Movement

 

Learn more about Groundswell‘s 9.11 project and get links to other 9.11 community projects

going on around the country.

 (The quilt shown above is from “The Day Our World Changed,” a children’s art exhibit about 9-11. Learn more about this exhibit at this website).

 

     ABOUT US 

mardog

Dirt Path Publishing is a company dedicated to helping people find new paths to success with everyday challenges. Inspired by our founder and her dog, Mario, we have abandoned life’s concrete path of certainty in favor of a dirt path, including all of the joy and chaos it brings.
We’re proud to have Dirt Path Press as our premier online publication and a brand new series of e-handbooks called, Skills I Wish I Learned in School, coming this fall. We look forward to other full length works coming soon.

For more information on our founder, visit click here.  

lgo_blk 

 

Dirt Path Publishing

Alameda, California

For inquiries or questions call 510.301.8211 or email us 

 

Copyright 2011 · DirtPathPublishing.com · All Rights Reserved

 

Volume 1, Issue 8 Back to School

 

Dirt Path Press

 

Volume 1, Issue 8  

August 2011 

 

 
Back to School

Greetings!

Welcome to the eighth issue of Dirt Path Press, an online newsletter written for anyone looking for new and different ways to deal with life’s everyday challenges.

As summer comes to an end, the new school year is just beginning. Perhaps wanting to be a teacher since I was in the second grade predisposes me to a love for this time of year, but something about new school supplies and a first day of school outfit makes feels like I have a new chance to get it right each year. Best of all, what that “it” is gets to be unique to every individual every year.

Accordingly, this month’s issue of Dirt Path Press is dedicated to heading back to school. While tempted to write a detailed story about the terrible dreams teachers get this time of year or how my own kids are making me crazy enough to long for school to start, I chose instead include a story I wrote about this time last year just after my 20th high school reunion. Teacher or not, student or not, on such occasions we all have the chance to “go back to school” and, as you’ll read, I’m surely glad I did.

This month’s OurStory reminds us of the “Little Rock 9,” nine students who risked everything–and I mean everything–for the chance at a decent education. Today, education is a fundamental right guaranteed to every student in this country; its important to remember that was not always the case. Moreover, its important to honor the people who fought these battles so we would never have to.

 

The dirt path issues its call for people to keep talking about things that really matter. If you like what you see here please pass Dirt Path Press on to your friends. 

In gratitude for the gift of my education,
Nicole Lusiani Elliott

Founder, Dirt Path Publishing  

 View our profile on LinkedIn  Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter

QUOTE OF THE MONTH  

If there were no schools to take the children away from home part of the time, the insane asylums would be filled with mothers.
~Edgar W. Howe

 

 

This Month’s Story 

myheadshot

“Has it Really Been 20 Years?

 

“…we all have a seat at the table that is our lives,” she says. “I wasn’t there ten minutes before I remembered that.” Nicole Lusiani Elliott talks about her trip back to school, 20 years in the making.

Read the Story

Ourstory

As we go back to school, Dirt Path Publishing honors the Little Rock Nine

 

ltlrock9  

 

I discovered that things were going to be violent. I had never really been in a position where people came at me so violently. I had no idea that grownups could act up and misbehave like this… as a child you don’t really understand until they happen to you. These grownups were threatening to kill me…coming at me with baseball bats and pieces of brick, they were walking up to me, slapping me, spitting on me (just because I wanted to go to school).

Melba Beals, about her experience in 1957

As I read scenes in which Melba was spit on, thrown acid on, or threatened with death, I realized that my childhood and education starkly contrasts from Melba’s. Civil rights aside, I have not spent the last seventeen years as a student who treasures my education, daily counting it as a gift. Instead, I have most often held a sense of entitlement over my education. Melba, on the other hand, fought for a good education.

Sarah Greeson 2007

     ABOUT US 

mardog

Dirt Path Publishing is a company dedicated to helping people find new paths to success with everyday challenges. Inspired by our founder and her dog, Mario, we have abandoned life’s concrete path of certainty in favor of a dirt path, including all of the joy and chaos it brings.
We’re proud to have Dirt Path Press as our premier online publication and a brand new series of e-handbooks called, Skills I Wish I Learned in School, coming this fall. We look forward to other full length works coming soon.

For more information on our founder, visit click here.  

Volume 1, Issue 7: Freedom

 

Dirt Path Press

 

Volume 1, Issue 7  

July 2011 

 

 

Greetings!

Welcome to the seventh issue of Dirt Path Press, an online newsletter written for anyone looking for new and different ways to deal with life’s everyday challenges.

234 years ago America was born and with it, the promise of freedom for all Americans. As the cornerstones of this great nation were placed this challenge was both new and exciting but, if we were honest, it was also a time tainted by hypocrisy. Women were not invited to participate in creating the government, nor were men of color, nor any man who didn’t own land. And yet over the years the liberty bell called on the disenfranchised to rise up and demand their part of the promise. We’ve come a long way in our 234 years; we also have some work left to do.

In honor of Independence Day this month’s issue of the Dirt Path Press is dedicated to freedom, including the freedom for all of us to answer our personal calls to be and do what is right for us. For some of us that call means raising children, for others it means writing books…point being, whatever that call is, we all deserve the right to answer it.

This month’s story comes from new guest writer, Jeff Goins. His post opens with the Declaration of Independence and ends with the charge to “Say something worth saying.” Freedom of speech, it seems, is both a right and a responsibility.

It is said that a person who doesn’t know his history “doesn’t know he’s a leaf that’s a part of a tree;” as a history teacher for most of my adult life, I could not agree more. As such, we’ve added a new section to the Dirt Path Press titled, “(Our)story.” The historical quotes and photos that correlate to each month’s theme remind us that the issues we face today aren’t all that different than the ones we’ve faced in the past.

 

The dirt path issues its call for people to keep talking about things that really matter. If you like what you see here please pass Dirt Path Press on to your friends. 

In gratitude for the freedom to be me,
Nicole Lusiani Elliott

Founder, Dirt Path Publishing  

 View our profile on LinkedIn  Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter

QUOTE OF THE MONTH  

America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms it will be because we destroyed ourselves.

Abraham Lincoln 

 

 

This Month’s Story 

“The Revolutionary Power of Words”

jeff 

Guest writer Jeff Goins shares his thoughts on just how powerful we are when we are free to use our words. In his words, “Never, ever, ever underestimate the power your words have.”

Read the Story

This Month’s Food For Thought
Freedom 
“It Gets Better” – Love, Pixar

What more fundamental freedom exists than the right to live our lives free of ridicule? Some pretty amazing employees at the equally amazing Pixar Studios have a message for our young LGBT Americans: you have the right to be as free as everybody else and if you can hold on, “It Gets Better.”

Ourstory

Dirt Path Publishing honors the 50th Anniversary of the Freedom Riders

 

 

…there was one of two things I had the right to, liberty or death; if I could not have one, I would have the other.

Harriet Tubman 1863

There will be a black baby born in Mississippi, and…he will be in prison…If I go to jail now it may help hasten that day when my child and all children will be free.

Diane Nash 1963

Dirt Path Publishing is Taking Shape!

 

Did you notice? We have a new look!lgo_blk

Moving ever forward, Dirt Path Publishing is in the process of developing a new look and logo for our company.

     ABOUT US 

mardog

Dirt Path Publishing is a company dedicated to helping people find new paths to success with everyday challenges. Inspired by our founder and her dog, Mario, we have abandoned life’s concrete path of certainty in favor of a dirt path, including all of the joy and chaos it brings. We’re proud to have Dirt Path Press as our premier online publication and a brand new series of handbooks called, Skills I Wish I Learned in School coming this fall. We also look forward to full length works such as ACT: The Team in Your Classroom, Wildflowers Don’t Grow in Rows, and What Can they Teach Us?

For more information on our founder, visit click here.

Volume 1, Issue 6: Courage

Dirt Path Press    

Volume 1, Issue 6       

June 2011       

 

published by Dirt Path Publishing       

Greetings!

Welcome to the sixth issue of Dirt Path Press, an online newsletter written for anyone looking for new and different ways to deal with life’s everyday challenges.

Having courage, there’s a challenge. Deeper than bravery, more honorable than arrogance, driven by confidence, and fueled by faith, this thing we call courage is something that calls on us as if to ask, “You think so? Prove it.”

And our reply either steps up to the plate and proves that we can or it walks back to the dug out to take a swing another day. When we step up and strike out, courage deals us another challenge: Try again or quit. Sadly, most people quit just before they swing for the bleachers. It’s too hard to try again because what if I fail, again?

This month’s story is about my uncharacteristicly calm view of a recent strike out and the idea that maybe courage is, at least in part, a natural extension of love.

Our entrepreneur of the month knows something about courage. Not only has she traveled around the world (which, for this homebody, seems like it might take more courage than I could muster!) she started her own photography business in the middle of a recession. Five years later she’s thriving in more ways than one.

 

For us, the dirt path is all about getting people talking about what really matters. If you like what you see here please pass Dirt Path Press on to your friends.    

In gratitude for a lifetime of blessings,
Nicole Lusiani Elliott

Founder, Dirt Path Publishing  

 View our profile on LinkedIn  Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter

QUOTE OF THE MONTH
The only courage you ever need is to live your heart’s desire.

Oprah Winfrey 

headshotThis Month’s Story 

The Hidden Success in Every Failure

 

Nicole Lusiani Elliott learns that courage can help us see things in a whole new way.

Read the Story

Joining Us on the Dirt Path of Life

Anne Kohler, Owner of Anne Kohler Photography

Featured recently in Alameda Magazine, Anne Kohler is an up and coming photographer who is a local phenom at places like the Blue Dot Cafe, where she’s sold more than 50 pieces of her work in the last few years.

anne

While other photographers take pictures, Anne creates art.

“It’s scary to put yourself out there,” she says, “to open up something you love to the criticism of others.” But she did it, and continues to do it, much to the delight of her clients and customers. Having the courage to create a career out of something she loves has enriched her life exponentially; the gift of her art does the same for us.

Be it on the side of a barn or  a racing on a speed boat, Anne and her camera work wherever they are called. Her favorite part is spending time with the new people she gets to meet when she’s shooting their photographs. “I also love the buzz I get from my creative releases. I come home from a shoot almost shaking with excitement!”

According to Anne, courage is “doing something you are afraid of, something that is not considered the safe choice, or the ‘normal’ choice. Courage is having the strength to face your innermost fears and doing it with all your effort and with you whole heart.”

When you see Anne’s work you know above all it’s done with heart which, as far as Dirt Paths go, is the key to unlocking any kind of courage that matters.

For more information, email Anne or visit her website.

 

ABOUT US 

mardog

Dirt Path Publishing is a company dedicated to helping people find new paths to success with everyday challenges. Inspired by our founder and her dog, Mario, we have abandoned life’s concrete path of certainty in favor of a dirt path, including all of the joy and chaos it brings. We’re proud to have Dirt Path Press as our premier online publication and a brand new series of handbooks called, Skills I Wish I Learned in School. We also look forward to full length works such as ACT: The Team in Your Classroom, Wildflowers Don’t Grow in Rows, and What Can they Teach Us?

For more information on our founder, visit click here.  

Dirt Path Publishing

Alameda, California

For inquiries or questions call 510.301.8211 or email info@dirtpathpublishing.com 

 

Copyright 2011 · DirtPathPublishing.com · All Rights Reserved