Tag Archives: work

In Pursuit of Lucid Enchantment…

It’s that time of year again… I have 20+ tabs open, on my browser and my brain. Upgrading my failing hard drive on my five year old laptop felt like breaking through to a new level of existence and a simultaneous brain upgrade and cash hemorrhage. The hustle is ON.

Full steam ahead, two festivals in production, conference calls and projects crammed into every bit of possible off time, plus a part time web design gig and once in a while I even make it to yoga class or take care of the chickens and goats! Yes, busy to the point of slight overwhelm, but what else is new? I thrive on this shit. And there’s not much else to distract me from it.

In November I started my third marketing cycle with Lucidity Festival near Santa Barbara.  Taking place in early April, this unique open-source festival is always a fun chance to see old friends, soak up a little SoCal sunshine, and enjoy beautifully curated music, performances, workshops, and more. Looking forward to the always awesome music lineup, and maybe I’ll actually get my ass in gear and take some workshops this year! Tickets are going quick now that our lineup is out, so hit me up for my discount code & join me in exploring Eudaimonia…

Late last summer & fall I was working on a crowdfunding campaign for their Lucid University project, which is also pretty exciting. Lucid University began as the central workshop / learning space at Lucidity festivals, and last year expanded to offer five immersive 3-day courses that took place the week before the festival, Courseweek. Last year, LU partnered up with a few other aligned folks to collectively purchase a property called Trillium, which had been a retreat & education center, in Southern Oregon. They just recently closed on the land, and a few of my Lucidity co-workers have been spending the winter in cabins up there, learning from the previous stewards and planting the seeds for the new home of a Lucid University education and retreat center and sustainable co-living / co-working community space. The festival, and Courseweek, is still in Santa Barbara, but this opens a whole new chapter of possibilities for this team so that’s really exciting to be a part of! I’ll be checking out the land at the Land-Warming party in May at Trillium.

But first, south to Lucidity in just a little over a month. I am excited to see my friends Pal & Ottie who live in the area and all my Lucidity co-workers and Animal Kingdom campmates! It’s been a long, cold, wet, and stormy winter, and I’m ready for festival season. And some time with old friends. Gonna try to figure out a visit to Idaho somewhere in the madness too…

Once festival season begins, there’s no slowing it down. I am now working year-round for Enchanted Forest Gathering, and we recently announced new dates for 2017 in June. I’m knee-deep in putting content together for the revamped website, and I’m working with an almost entirely new Marketing team this year, which has been really awesome and helped me learn a lot already. Moving to June means even little more overlap between EFG and Lucidity though. The last month or so I have really started to feel the overwhelm, and have gone back into hermit workaholic mode. But with both teams moving along like well-oiled machines and a couple hectic production seasons under my belt now, I feel like I’m finally getting a better handle on this work-life balance thing. Kinda.

The Enchanted lineup is shaping up to be the stuff of legends, and Camp Higher Porpoise is making plans for an even more amazing collaborative Mendoland environment. I am super excited to announce our music lineup this year. OMG. It is SO HARD to keep this one in… but we gotta have a freakin’ website first so let’s just say it will be well worth the wait, and you should definitely BE THERE. Get those tickets meow, and be sure to hit me up for my discount code. You will regret it if you don’t Get Enchanted with us this year.

I am not too sure how many flow arts events I will be able to make it to this year… now that FireDrums is the weekend before Enchanted, it may be a bit hard to go. But I am going to a new event that I’ve been meaning to check out forever, Symbiosis, which will be in Oregon this August on the weekend of a solar eclipse. Badass. A bunch of my festie friends will be there, and it will be nice not to be working at a festival for once, but we’ll see, I may just find a way to work at it yet…

All this work and festivals has been a lovely distraction from the absolute shitshow that is American politics lately, as well as my rather neglected personal life, so I’m just gonna keep my focus there. I have been to some awesome shows the past few months in the Bay, had some yard sales with friends and started cleaning out my storage unit, foraged for edible mushrooms in between rainstorms, got involved in a local activism group called Mobilize Mendo, and marched in the Womens’ March in Fort Bragg, which was super inspiring and uplifting after such a horribly fucked election, and really well attended. I have NEVER seen so many people in one place on the Mendocino coast. And the protest signs—SO CLEVER! Also loved seeing the various National Parks and science / environmental agencies that Twitler has tried to silence and censor rise up on social media with alternate accounts, climate change truth bombs and clever resistance. We need these silver linings in this stormy weather.

My political activism is re-awakening, after getting a bit complacent and wrapped up in my own stuff for quite a while, it’s time to wake up & rage against the machine again. Reminds me of my college days of turning every art class project into a political statement. I never thought I would actually miss George Dubya & his cronies, but I admit it, I do. There is no reasoning with the current batch of fearmongers and I am legitimately terrified for my country. But mostly for anyone who is not a rich white male, and for the planet, for immigrants and our oppressed populations whose already inadequate protections now don’t stand a chance. I can’t even pay attention to the news lately, it’s too much. The rise of fascism is too real and too fast. But I’m bracing for a fight. And I’m focusing on building and supporting the communities who are our only hope. It’s about time to start planting more seeds and growing more food, too…

There is good happening. I am surrounded by amazing and inspiring people, but I can see through the safe walls of my bubble. I know it’s dark out there, and there’s much work to be done. But I won’t let that shit dull my shine, and I sure as hell won’t let it keep me from building the better future I know is possible, because I glimpse it every time I arrive at a festival and see people working together, building community, creating amazing art and celebrating the good we still have.

So I’ll just be here, working, dreaming, dancing, and resisting until the clouds part and the sun returns… Spring is coming. So I gather my strength and look forward.

The Enchanted Life

Eeeeeeeeeeek! Where has 2016 gone? How is it mid-July already? Oh, and by the way, will I see you next weekend at Enchanted Forest Gathering? I better. For the last few months, my life has basically been consumed with producing and marketing my favorite festival.

6DaysCountdown

This post sat blank as a draft for weeks as it grew closer and closer, and somehow it just never got done, with all of my jobs, attempting to pull off a garden this summer, and getting ready to move. Again. (More on that later…) So here we are, less than a week until gates open, and still far from our ticket sales goal, and I am hoping for a miracle as I write my annual love letter to my enchanted family.

The past few months have taught me more than I can really wrap my head around. This entire year has been a roller coaster. Through it all I have been working on Lucidity and Enchanted Forest. I have taken on more than ever before in these roles, doing everything I can to help my team succeed and learning from amazing collaborators in the process. It blows me away that in the span of two years, I have gone from attending and volunteering at festivals to helping create them. I never thought my hobby would turn into my dream job.

My favorite thing about working at these events has been getting to pull my friends into roles in the organizations I work with, giving them a chance to shine, and watching them completely amaze me with their brilliance. I am inspired by the people I have the pleasure of working with every day, and at my friends’ capabilities when given a platform and a purpose. The plans have been in the works for months. Our team has been working our asses off, and this precious child we’ve incubated together over the past six months (honestly, more like six years, as this will mark year six of EFG) is about to be born, ready or not, into a world that may or may not be prepared for it.

I never feel ready. No matter how early we start planning and marketing, the event itself sneaks up on me. But I jump anyway, trusting the hard work I’ve put in, the team that surrounds me, and my community.

EF2016-Lineup-Poster-FINAL-web-4

Listening to our amazing music lineup, checking out the weather forecast, and planning our camp full of locals and collected friends from near and far have left me buzzing with excitement.

Last weekend I traveled to Seattle and back to my little sister’s wedding. I feel like being so busy working on festivals has left me with way less time than I’d like to help her plan her wedding, but luckily, she is superhuman, and the entire thing was meticulously planned and went beautifully. We even managed to avoid the rain that was on the forecast. In SEATTLE.

I hated that I had to take my laptop on a wedding trip and spend down time working. But alas, with this labor of love, I can’t give enough. EFG, you have my heart.

I am not only the Marketing Operations Manager, helping keep the marketing machine moving along, but this year I once again co-coordinated the Flow Zone workshop space. This time I got to share that honor with my partner in flow, James, and we are super excited about the talented roster of teachers & performers we’ve put together.

EF16-Yoga-Movement-lineup-poster-Final-Web

This year boasts our most epic lineup yet, with some exciting new micro-environments, a HUGE variety of workshops, and all kinds of magic in the making. This year our team, our website and branding, and our systems all got a major upgrade. We’re finally growing into our new venue, Black Oak Ranch, and collaborating with some of the people we could only dream about working with even a year ago. I am truly excited to see where this YUM train goes… I just hope we get enough people there to make this dream viable.

It’s become a very tough and oversaturated market in the last few years, and with so many festivals it has been hard to draw the crowd we need to sustain the ridiculously epic production we’re putting on. The intention is on point, the team is amazing, our lineup is strong, and now as we set sail on this adventure, we can only hope for the best. I believe. I always have. I always will. There is no place like home. And for me, home is among my friends in the Enchanted Forest.

I hope you’ll join me in the dream… We’re building it. Who will come be a part of it?

Sweet September Summertime Magic

It’s hard for me to believe that it’s late September already. This year has truly flown by… I suppose that happens when you’re living the dream!

This weekend James and I embark on our last festival adventure of the year, and our second flow arts retreat this year, Pacific Fire Gathering. We went for the first time last year and it was one of our favorite weekends ever. I am so ready to finish up a packed festival season with one final family reunion ~ an intimate, flow arts focused retreat of our spinnerd flowmies on the beautiful Oregon coast. We can’t wait!

We are still recovering from Enchanted Forest… Wow. My heart swells with the memories made, the hard work and little sleep, the bonds cemented and the family found. I am so ridiculously grateful that even thinking about it brings me to tears… Just… Wow. Thank you.

Flower of Life at the Dance Temple

I have truly busted my ass this year, but it doesn’t always feel like work, even when I’m going from one job to the next to the next and staying up late working. Some of it has been familiar territory, but most of it has been completely new to me. It’s been a steep learning curve and I still have so much more to learn and explore. Thankfully I have been able to work with inspiring people and branch out to social media marketing and event production while keeping my part-time web design contract with PETA, providing some stability while I expand my skill set in new areas after hours. But quite honestly, I’m ready to hibernate for the winter and catch up on my web design training and flow arts practice again! After a decade of doing design work, getting into a new field and getting involved with producing some of my favorite events has been a breath of fresh air to my life and I am so excited to keep doing ALL THE THINGS!

Enchanted Forest marked the culmination of working on three consecutive festival production cycles with three (somewhat overlapping) really amazing teams. In addition to social media and marketing support, I also helped co-coordinate the Flow Zone at EF this year, one of eight workshop areas focused on flow arts and spinning. We had a small workshop area near the main stage shaded by beautiful oak trees, and every time I walked by, the area was full of happy people learning new moves and props. I was SO proud to see so much play and joy happening in that space, well attended workshops and lots of beginners trying flow arts for the first time.

EF Flow Zone

 

There was a moment on Sunday afternoon that completely made my weekend… I was hanging out with friends dancing to Chali 2na and behind us, in the flow zone, we saw a toddler wearing nothing but a diaper and ear protection rocking out with his dad, both with shiny new flow wands they’d gotten from Aileen Lawlor’s workshop. The dad was practicing his flow to the music while the little guy held his wand in the middle, dancing around clumsily and waving it in his hand with a huge grin on his face. They rocked out together all afternoon in blissful moments of the most adorable flow magic. Just one of many magical memories…

We were posting to social media throughout the event, but since the wifi hot spots onsite were painfully slow, Jonah and I had to drive into Laytonville each day to get posts scheduled, check messages, and update our networks to rally the family to our gates. We still have quite a bit of space at Black Oak Ranch to fill, but we had a bunch of on-site ticket sales especially on Sunday. We had a huge media team, a big expansion of offerings with 8 different workshop areas, 4 stages and a variety of music programming, awesome performance artists, a sexy sauna and bathhouse, and a brand new beautiful venue to enjoy as the fruits of our months of work and organization, so there was a LOT going on and I was running all over the place working on a little of everything (and playing too – one can never be too busy for an impromptu photo shoot).

Photo by Edward Clynes
Photo by Edward Clynes

Though our fire spinning performance time was cut short, I got to fire hoop on the main stage with Liquid Stranger and James and I even got to meet him afterwards. We also got to watch Koan Sound from backstage, get our minds melted by Ott, get serenaded to sleep from the nearby Dance Temple, and we had sound in our camp with Acacia Beats and all kinds of guest DJs playing throughout the weekend. The performances were top notch, the music was amazing, but it was the people I shared the weekend with that really made this one memorable.

Camp Higher Porpoise Peeps

In between running around everywhere and working, I did get to enjoy some of the festival. It was awesome getting to hang out with friends from Lucidity, Once Upon a Festival and other festivals, flowmies from flow fests, local friends, our Enchanted Forest and Camp Mendoland families… but seeing us all coming all together and creating Camp Higher Porpoise this year was simply mind-blowing and heartwarming. James’s DJ crew Acacia Beats and a bunch of our Mendo friends joined forces with the fine folks we camp with at Raindance (which was canceled this year) to create the most amazing glampfest I have ever been lucky enough to be a part of. We rented a huge tent, had power and sound, a yoga swing, carpet and squish, lights and a badass lounge area in our camp just behind the Dance Temple. So many friends from various parts of our lives collaborated on a theme camp that was so plush, we had people asking what part of the festival we were and producers and musicians coming back again and again to hang out, play music, or get buffed with the car buffer on the massage table. SO GOOD. My friends are such badasses and DAMN do we know how to have a good time. Camp Higher Porpoise / Mendoland, we fucking rock!

The Raising of the Porpoise

The weekend went pretty smoothly but of course it flew by way too fast. As we worked, played, learned, connected, and danced, my heart swelled. This is where I was meant to be. These are my people. And I actually helped make this magic happen! Like I said, WOW.

But Enchanted Forest was not the last of our summer adventures. For Labor Day weekend, James and I drove up to Boise, Idaho to hang out with my family. We stayed at the family cabin in the beautiful mountains of McCall with my grandparents, parents, aunt, and my sister, her fiancé, and their adorable dog Bisbee.

We ate well, caught up, did a little planning for my sister’s wedding next summer (!!!!!), took a boat ride around Payette Lake and rode bikes in Ponderosa State Park. It was a long overdue and really nice visit, but I’m glad we’ll be going back for Christmas because it wasn’t quite enough family time. James got to meet more of my family and he really bonded with our fur-niece, he and Bis are SUPER tight now. 😉 She was a bit terrified of the boat though…

Family Time in McCall

As we’ve been decompressing and preparing for one last hurrah this weekend, I have enjoyed being home, cooking delicious food from my garden, and playing catch up after a whirlwind production season. I am SO looking forward to this fall, when I can stay home for a while, catch up on design and flow training, clean and purge our house so we can look for a new one, hibernate with my babycakes and just RELAX for a bit. Thankfully the next trip after PacFire will be for Thanksgiving, when I finally get to meet James’s mom in Southern California.

Whew! Life sure has been amazing lately. Sometimes I can’t believe how lucky I am to be living it. Thank you all so much for being a part of this magical journey!

And now I leave you with some inspiring words from Prince Ea, whose videos I’ve been digging lately:

 

 

 

Learning to Juggle (Metaphorically)

You never quite know what you’re capable of until you try to do it ALL. AT. ONCE.

I should really take up juggling… I feel like I have a lot of practice already, at least in the metaphorical sense!

In less than two weeks, I will be on-site at Lucidity, which is a bit hard for me to believe. Apparently time not only flies when you’re having fun, it soars by even faster when you’re busy as hell. There are only a few hundred tickets left, which means my job isn’t quite done, but if you’re thinking about joining us, you’d better act fast! Don’t forget to use my promo code ‘meganpru’ for $5 off your ticket!  You could also WIN a ticket by submitting a video inviting a loved one to join you at Lucidity! It’s gonna be pretty awesome…

Photo by David Pricco at Lucidity 2013.
Photo by David Pricco at Lucidity 2013.

As I go from one job to the next to the next each day, I am constantly in awe of how much my teammates and I manage to do and keep track of. I am most certainly among real-life jedis, that’s the only explanation for this level of badassery. I am learning a lot, from the intricacies of formatting and timing Facebook posts for best engagement to tricks for keeping things organized in Google Drive, but mostly how to manage my time and maintain balance with so much on my plate(s) and such long hours spent on screens.

I’ve come to realize that perhaps five jobs is a few too many, but I am grateful that a few of them are seasonal, and there’s not as many hours when it’s not a festival production cycle. I am counting my lucky stars that Lucidity, Forever Everland, and Enchanted Forest are all nicely spaced at two months apart this summer! Two part time jobs is plenty, though the extra few hours a week from the other three sure is nice to have. I am finally getting somewhere on saving some money, paying things off, and being able to make some long-awaited purchases like a new external hard drive that I’ve needed for YEARS now. I hardly leave the house since there’s always work to do, but when I do, it’s to do awesome things like celebrate Holi, the festival of color celebrated each spring in India, on the beach for a friend’s birthday, or soaking in mineral hot springs all day with my love… So I’m ok with the work-life balance I’m tenuously clinging to. 😉

And speaking of Holi… man was that fun! These are just a few of the fun photos I took:

Holi2 Holi3 Holi4 Holi5

 

Lucid Days and Dreams: An Exercise in Balance

2015 has been a whirlwind already. A big storm last weekend that knocked out power for 36 hours here on the Mendocino coast forced me to slow down and realize just how much I’ve been doing every day this year. It also made me realize how sadly dependent all five of my jobs, and thus my life, is on electricity and internet! I have been playing catch up all week after being off-grid Sunday night through Tuesday morning. But somehow even though nearly every hour of my day is now scheduled, I fully embrace this chaos of my own making and enjoy being busily involved in so many exciting projects.

36 hour power outage means pretty candles

I have always kept myself pretty busy, but this year I am taking it to a whole new level. Late last year I received a message from someone I’d worked with at Forever Everland who mentioned that Lucidity Festival had some positions opening up that I might be a good fit for. I had been planning to really hunker down this winter and focus on work, getting as many billable hours in as possible so I can pay stuff off and save up to hopefully move into a bigger place this year. So the opportunity arose at a great time, and I submitted a resume and started talking to the Marketing department as they began to gear up for 2015. Lucidity is a Southern California transformational festival that has been on my radar since it began in 2012, but I haven’t been able to get down there for the early April event yet. This year that will be changing, and when April finally rolls around I will be more than ready to experience the fruits our labors!

I started as the Marketing Operations Lead for Lucidity Festival’s marketing department in early January – adding another part-time contract to my pile. And now that I’ve been here a minute and am starting to feel a bit more caught up with everything going on in the bustling Lucid universe, I’m beginning to feel quite at home. I mean, how rad is it that their contracts include The Four Agreements (one of my favorite books) and their core values sound like something I could have written? Pretty rad. 🙂

Lucidity Core Values

  1. Participation and Immersion in the Artistic Process
  2. Personal Growth and Global Healing
  3. Awake and Aware Consciousness
  4. Environmental and Social Responsibility
  5. Family Fun and Creative Play
  6. Communal Reciprocity
  7. Transparency

The team I work with is inspiring and awesome, I am learning a lot and taking on a lot that is new to me, all good things! And though increasing my workload has been a bit overwhelming at times, it is teaching me to manage my time better, work more efficiently, plan ahead and it reminds me that I need to make time for a social life and relaxation too – it feels a bit like juggling but I’m moving towards balance. Work hard, play hard!

This job is giving me an opportunity to push my growth edges and gain valuable experience in new areas. I have to process and keep up with a lot of projects, e-mails, phone calls, meetings, documents, and people. My role is more of a management role than any I’ve held previously, but I also get to use my design and communication skills, knack for organization, and my love of multitasking and having lots of variety in my work life is definitely coming in handy! AND I am also still working for PETA part time as well as spending a few hours a week helping with social media management for Forever Everland and Enchanted Forest, and a few hours a week as a Personal Assistant for my friend Amae Love.  It’s a lot of hours, but it feels less like work to me when I am doing a variety of things for a living rather than having one job. That 9-5 life is far too bland and boring for this weirdo, even if I end up working my little booty off trying to avoid working for people and organizations I don’t align with. Maintaining an “alternative” lifestyle sure can be exhausting, but I’m certainly enjoying it. I am grateful that I have 5 jobs and I can say that I truly love, enjoy, and feel good about my work with every single one.  What a blessed, busy life!

We don’t have any festivals on the radar this year other than ones we’re working or learning at (FireDrums, Forever Everland and Enchanted Forest most likely), so Lucidity will be a nice “working vacation” for me (not sure that James can join me unfortunately) and a wonderful chance to experience a new event and hang out with some good friends who moved to SoCal from Mendo a few years back, Pal and Ottie! It will also mark the end of a very busy few months, as the start of 2015 is shaping up to be.

I’m really excited that I’ll likely be in Santa Barbara for a week surrounding the festival, which means I can participate in some Community Action Days with The Polish Ambassador since Lucidity is partnering with him to make that happen! And… the lineup is pretty freaking epic as well. Getting giddy just thinking about it… and also about the fact that this is all part of my job now. Doesn’t really feel like work when I think about it that way… 🙂

If you’d like to join us at Lucidity this year, get your tickets ASAP! It’s getting close to selling out and I want you there! Use my discount code “meganpru” at checkout to receive $5 off Lucidity tickets! 

Lucidity 2015 Lineup

Setting Sail for Foreverland

Summer is always busy, but WOW has this one been a doozy! Between hosting spin jams, keeping a variety of fermented foods going, gardening and the usual summer BBQs, river days and beach trips, it’s been a lot of fun, too. I am happy to say that I recently picked up a couple new “jobs” to keep me even busier, and more financially stable. I am now a personal assistant for a local couple and have joined the production team for a transformational festival. And this is, of course, in addition to my day job and the occasional freelance design work. My weekdays especially are tightly booked, but I am loving having more billable hours and several projects that I’m excited about working on.

I am working with my friend Amae to help manage her etsy shop, Amae Love Designs, filling and shipping orders while she’s performing, traveling, and festivaling, and helping with marketing, social media, and optimizing her business. It’s a nice variety of work, which is perfect for me!

Amae’s partner Tulku is lead of production for Enchanted Forest, one of my favorite local festivals. He and a team of festival producers and Burning Man sound camps are throwing a new festival in just five short weeks, a fun mix of the more spiritual, faerie tale Enchanted Forest vibes with some rowdy pirate party energy, with 24-hour world class music on multiple stages, workshops, amazing art and performances, a lake to swim & float in, and hopefully all of YOU! It’s called Foreverland and it’s going to be AWESOME. It’s kinda like my favorite local festival and some of my favorite Burning Man camps had a love child who became a Lost Boy in Foreverland. 🙂

Foreverland Poster

I was lucky enough to be brought in by Tulku to assist with the Foreverland web content, marketing, social media, and basically to help the production team in any way I can to create a top-tier event that’s accessible to broke hippies at the end of an epic festival season. Check out the web site to apply to get involved!

So needless to say, I will be VERY busy in the next five weeks. It’s probably a good thing I’m not going to the burn this year, because I’ll have plenty to do on Foreverland production team, helping Amae get orders for fabulous playa wear sent out, and keeping up with the endless bounty of zucchini and other goodies from my garden! Plus, we are going to our first Pacific Fire Gathering, our only flow arts festival this year, and I am very much looking forward to learning new things and leveling up in hoops, flow wand, fans, and performing in general!

See you in October when festival season is over… Whew! Now back to work… anchor’s away!