Monday, December 19, 2011
I have been absent from this blog for a loooong time, and I apologise. You see, our computer is completely exhausted...it is full of viruses and we need to replace it. So that means, I haven't really been able to check out all my favourite blogs as often as I'd like, so I hope that everyone is well, and that you are all getting ready to celebrate Christmas with your family and friends.
I have been on the most wonderful adventure this past couple of weeks, and can't wait to tell you all about it (and yes, I have lots of photos!) We took a roadtrip! An adventure of the most wonderful kind...gypsies in a home on wheels, travelling from place to place, stopping wherever our heart desired. It was magical. I have to tell you what a beautiful land this is that I live in - makes me incredibly grateful that I live here. It has only whet my appetite for more travel, and we can't wait to do it again.
This journey began in Queensland, and we made our way down the east coast of New South Wales, Australia, stopping at quaint seaside villages along the way. I promise to share photos as soon as I am able to upload them. While away, I celebrated my 45th birthday at a beautiful town called Kiama. We ate a fisherman's basket and sipped wine, overlooking the ocean. It made me so happy...
So until I am able to sort out my computer issues, I bid you and your families a most magical Christmas, and a safe and happy New Year. May it bring you much love, happiness and magic x
Saturday, November 12, 2011
Sunday, October 30, 2011
Sunday, October 23, 2011
The weeks are flying by, and as the seasons change, I feel a deep metamorphisis within myself. These past few years have been a time of renewal for me...of transformation and growth. The Transpersonal Art Therapy I studied a few years back began the peeling back of many layers. The process was often times painful, but I am at a point in my life now where I feel so alive and appreciative of all that I have experienced, good and bad.
I will not lie to you...it has been very difficult at times. But completely necessary. I was living a life of excess, and knew it was not good for me, or those around me, but I felt trapped and unable to make changes. The insecure person I was was desperate for approval and the need to 'fit in'.
I spent a lot of time alone, but never lonely, exploring my creativity and just enjoying the quiet. I began meditating, taking long walks and, as you know, yoga. I really began to love and honour myself again, and I felt myself growing stronger and stronger.
As I delved deeper into my own truth, I began to find the courage to say no, and to begin to live authentically. Again, not easy, because people as a rule, don't like change - it's too scary, and it forces them to look at their own lives.
As I continue on my journey of self re-discovery (for that is how it feels - coming full circle to my unique essence, with the added bonus of maturity and wisdom which comes from making mistakes and learning from them), I find myself re-connecting with friends from my past, who are like-minded and share the same interests and beliefs.
The beautiful photo above of the peacock in all his majestic glory was taken while catching up with a gorgeous friend who I went to school with, and have not seen in many years. I can honestly say that spending the afternoon with her was wonderful, and the hours flew by talking about the years in between. When the peacock displayed his beautiful tail like that, it was as though he was putting on a show, just for us, and I can't descibe how excited we were!
As we ate our lunch, he sauntered past, and I remarked how his beauty astounded me, and how amazing Mother Nature is. He reminded me of my own gifts which I share with the world, and how it doesn't serve anyone to hide those gifts.
When I first began my blog, I was unsure at first, and a little self-conscious to say the least, but the process of taking photos and blogging has changed my life. Once upon a time, I would never have posted any of my art here, because I always would compare it to someone else's, and I never felt that I measured up. I am happy to say that I have come to a place where I am happy to post my art, knowing full well that it will never make it onto the walls of an art gallery or be sold for thousands of dollars, but it is MY art, so that makes it special, and if it inspires even one person, then my heart is full.
I hope that my story inspires you to celebrate all of your gifts and to share them with the world. Honour yourself for the amazing person that you are...
...and just because I love em, check out my new red shoes! A gift to myself...hee hee
Below is one of my favourite quotes, given to me by a beautiful friend who I studied Art Therapy with.
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Okay, so I haven't been in the secret garden in any physical sense lately, because it has been so cold and wet! (Spring, where did you go?) But I have definitely been tending my metaphorical secret garden, nurturing myself with art and escaping into fantasy novels and just enjoying the 'being'. I have been pruning that in my life which no longer serves me, or that doesn't make me feel good. I have been planting seeds of creativity and watching them blossom and grow. My garden feels wild and abundant and I am enjoying all the fruits of my labour....
I have been struck down with some nasty bug, which has confined me to the couch, pretty much, but I am grateful, for it has forced me to ignore the chores that are beckoning, and to just quiet my mind and spend some quality time with myself. I treated myself to this little water colour set yesterday, and I'm so happy I did! The little brush fills up with water, so it's totally portable, and I can paint now wherever I am. It's like I have been possessed (in a good way), and I can't stop drawing and painting! I am in love...
I have taken out my journals, which I have neglected for a while, and unleashed my new found muse upon them. This is purely play, my friends, and I find myself creating mandalas, and losing (finding) myself in them. Now that I think of it, the dreamcatcher from last week got me thinking about circles...perhaps that is why I have mandalas bursting from me! If you don't know much about the magic of mandalas, I suggest you read this description
They are traditionally used for meditation and healing, and I really urge you to have a go and see where they may take you. Carl Jung believed that they accessed deeper levels of our consciousness, and are used for healing.
To make one, just begin with a 'seed'...or a little circle in the middle of your page. Now here comes the fun part - just make a mark around your seed. It can be anything. The whole point is not to think too much. Perhaps an S shape, or a C, or a diamond...you get the idea. After a while, you will find that the mandala will 'tell' you what mark to make next. That's the magic of them...you are getting out of your head (ego) and drawing from a deeper place (your authentic self, or soul). I love to put on some chill out music to draw, but everyone is different, and what is right for me, may not be right for you. I love mandalas because, truly, there are no mistakes, and every one is different.
"What you are is God's gift to you; what you do with yourself is your gift to God" - Danish proverb
Still scared to draw? Just place your hand on a piece of blank paper and trace around it with a black sharpie pen. This was a lot of fun, inspired by a gorgeous vintage palm reading poster I found in a shop (and which both my daughter and I are coveting!) I had a little giggle to myself when I realised that I had drawn another mandala inside the palm...I love this!
Remember the dreamcatcher swap I did last week? Well, I posted mine off, and received the one my swap partner made me yesterday! Her name is Nola, and she is such a sweetheart...she doesn't have a blog, but judging by her beautiful handiwork, perhaps she should! I love that it has a little bell attached, and a clay heart dangling down. It is hanging above my bed, to capture my sweet dreams...thankyou Nola x
Before I crawl back to my couch, I wanted to let you all know that I am having trouble again with Blogger, and I have tried to leave comments on some of your blogs, but am unable to...grrrr...so please don't think I have forgotten you - I love peeking in to see what you have all been up to. I hope this is fixed soon...
"The time will come...when, with elation, you will greet yourself arriving at your own door, in your own mirror, and each will smile at the other's welcome."
Tuesday, October 04, 2011
Yesterday was such a beautiful day that I decided the time was right to make my dreamcatcher. So I gathered a basket of bits and pieces and took a blanket out in the sunshine.
I had been down the garden path the day before and found a beautiful vine wrapped around a tree. It was perfect for making my circle; I just twisted it into the size I wanted. Next I collected some feathers, some beads and a ball of string. Just a little note to self for next time - make sure the beads have holes big enough for the string to pass through!
I began by making a little hoop in the top of the string to hang the dreamcatcher. I threaded a couple of beads on and then tied the end to the top of the hoop, leaving enough string to hang it by. To start, you just hold the string and place it loosely over the top of the hoop. Move the string around to the back of the hoop (forming a hole) and pull the string back through the hole you just made.
Pull each stitch taught but not too tight or it will warp the hoop of the dreamcatcher. The same stitch is repeated around the hoop, spacing the stitches evenly (approximately 10 stitches around the hoop).
The last stitch of the first round should be placed a couple of centimetres away from the hanging loop. On the next round of the circle, place the string around the centre of each stitch from the previous round (rather than around the hoop). Now, don't stress at this point. As you can see with mine, my 'spider web' pattern isn't perfect where I've missed the loops, but I kind of think it adds to the organic look of it, and I'm not fussed by it being perfect.
As you pull each stitch tight, a diamond shape will begin to form, and it will begin to look like a spider web. Once you have been around a few times, you can thread a bead onto the string, and just continue stitching. keep going, until you have a little hole in the centre of your dreamcatcher (to let the bad dreams through!) You can just finish it here with a couple of stitches through the same loop to form a knot.
With the left over string, just attach a couple of feathers and perhaps some beads and knot. I wrapped the string around the top of the feathers to neaten it up.
I also embellished my dreamcatcher with some crystals. Turquoise to dispel negativity and to open the heart chakra, and the powerful crystal quartz, for balance, protection and harmony, and particularly useful in dream work. These I just wrapped tightly with wire to attach to my dreamcatcher. Then I threaded some beads and crystals onto some leather and looped these around the bottom of the hoop to hang next to the feathers.
I certainly lost myself in the creating, and the repetitive nature of looping the string was quite meditative, and as I spun my web, I couldn't help but ponder the cleverness of spiders who do this naturally. I was lucky enough to see a spider's web in the garden yesterday, and I marvelled at the intricacy of the delicate home he had spun.
I hope you are inspired to make a dreamcatcher of your own. Sweet dreams...I wish we could all have a sleepover and make dreamcatchers together - how fun that would be!
Sunday, October 02, 2011
It is school holidays here, and I have just returned from the little beach house. The weather wasn't very kind, but we had a lovely time nevertheless. The beach was magnificent as always...long walks with the wind in my hair and the roar of the ocean in my ears. Just beautiful...
The rain did keep me indoors for a time, but it was the perfect excuse to curl up in bed with a novel and the sound of the rain falling on my little tin roof - cosy indeed, with Pip curled up at the end of the bed. I managed to escape for a few precious hours into the realms of imagination, between the pages of a library book - my idea of bliss.
My little bedroom at the beach house is a tiny room at the top of the stairs, with a peaked roof and a little window which looks out at the inlet...we are near farmland, and from my little hideaway you can hear the cows and the sheep in the meadows...a very comforting sound, and the perfect place to spend a rainy day.
I am home again now, and need to get busy in the studio. I have decided to take part in a swap with some lovely ladies on facebook...we each must make our version of a dreamcatcher and we have been given the name of a partner to swap with. A little while back I made a dreamcatcher and it was a lot of fun, so I'm looking forward to making another. Do you remember this one?
I will be sure to take a photo to share when I have finished my dreamcatcher.
Wishing everyone a wonderful week...and remember to 'sprinkle a little magic everyday'.
Monday, September 26, 2011
✿ Then, one day, one little water beetle felt an irresistible urge to climb up that stem. However, she was determined that she would not leave forever. She would come back and tell her friends what she had found at the top. When she reached the top and climbed out of the water onto the surface of the lily pad, she was so tired, and the sun felt so warm, that she decided she must take a nap.
✿ As she slept, her body changed and when she woke up, she had turned into a beautiful blue-tailed dragonfly with broad wings and a slender body designed for flying. So fly she did! And, as she soared she saw the beauty of whole new world and a far superior way of life to what she had never known existed.
✿ Then she remembered her beetle friends and how they were thinking by now she was dead. She wanted to go back to tell them, and explain to them that she was now more alive than she had ever been before. Her life had been fulfilled rather than ended. But her new body would not go down into the water. She could not get back to tell her friends the good news.
✿ Then she understood that their time would come, when they, too, would know what she knew. So, she raised her wings and flew off into her joyous new life!"
~ Anonymous ~
Friday, September 23, 2011
It seems there is a bit of Practical Magic floating about the blogosphere, but because I have been somewhat absent here lately, I didn't arrive in time to participate, but thought I would get into the witchy mood by posting some of my older photos. I had such fun doing this photo shoot. I hope you enjoy it too...if you want to see what everyone else has in store, you can pop on over to Anna at Frosted Petunias for a list of all the participants. Should be a hoot.
It seems that I have been enamoured with all things magical lately, and have been indulging is some magical fiction. The trilogy of books by Nora Roberts called "The Three Sisters Island trilogy" was a wonderful read. Pure escapism about three witches and how their lives are entwined forever. If you enjoy a bit of witchcraft, fantasy and a love-story rolled into one, then these are the books for you.
I have also been busy reconnecting with some old friends, one of whom happens to be a witch herself. I have introduced you before, I am sure, to my dear friend Wendy. She is wild and beautiful, and oh so talented, and the hours just fly when we get together...she hypnotises with her unique voice.
I always try to bring a little magic into everyday...the possibilities are endless...
Have a magical day everyone...