Tag Archive | links

Are we there yet? where to this week?



This is a weekly challenge I do with Amanda, over at her blog the link is above, go and visit her, I have always wanted to go to Africa and when I was pregnant with Star Son who is now almost 13 I started reading “Wilbur Smith” and a lot of his books are set in Africa, and of course my other favorite author now sadly passed was Bryce Courtney whose most famous book was “The Power of One” also set in Africa. So I want to go to Africa one day.

So playing along with Amanda who asks “Are we there yet?” I thought I’d bring you all over to my home town and so I started taking pics of some signs, I realized that Sunbury likes to stack their signs, a lot of signs on one post!! Have a look and see what I mean….

You can find out more about Sunbury’s history here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunbury,_Victoria

So welcome to my town and feel free to drop by I’ll put the kettle on!

NaBloPoMo December is Joy… Pen-pals! and NOT feeling sad.


I’ve written about Pen pals somewhere in my blog I just know I have and it’s funny because they give me so much joy. On my worst days a letter will come and sometimes I’ll rip it open and read through it and then if I am inspired I’ll reply right away, or I’ll carefully fold it all up and put it away until I have time to dedicate to it.

Some pals you click with instantly and others are a slow drawn out affair, and others still, no matter how hard you try, there’s no connection there.

Through NaBloPoMo, I have found a blogger who was writing about Snail mail… read her post here: http://myantidepressantlife.com/i-love-the-swirl-and-swing/

In the bottom of her post “Lady J” said this “Do you still write letters? What’s your favorite part about sending or receiving them?” So of course I had to reply to that. I wondered if “Lady J” realized what a can of worms she was opening, suddenly everyone wants to be pen-pals with her. I think it’s awesome and I hope that she finds some new life long friends as I have my first pen-pal is in Germany and we are still in touch regularly, We have been pals for 12 years. WoW!! So I received an email from Lady J and I will be sending her mail. I am hopeful that we will have enough in common that we want to write to each other again, because I don’t have a pal currently in the state of Oregon.. maybe soon I will!!

Thursday, December 4, 2014
Who do you like to be with when you’re feeling sad?

Today’s journal prompt is very apt to the Pen-pal discussion, because when I am sad, I take myself away and I write, I usually have time to concentrate on my pen-pal letters, when I am sad I retreat to my bedroom and journal and “get over it” this could also include spending time writing letters because seriously by the time you reply to all the things your pal has written you’ll soon find yourself feeling much better.

I always try to skim over the sad parts, and if the particular pal wants more info she’ll ask me and I’ll tell her but by then whatever made me sad in the first place has ceased to matter so it’s all good.

Blogging 101.. WordPress course I signed up for.

I sign up for these things and generally forget them, but I have been saving them in my inbox so I could come back later and go over them.. so today’s email says:

{It’s time to leave the confines of Blogging 101 to seek other opportunities (blopportunities?). From weekly iPhoneography challenges to monthly flash-fiction events, blogger-hosted events are fun, free, spirited ways to get even more feedback on your work, build your audience, and make friends.

Today’s challenge: pick a blogging event from the Community Event Listings to try for some instant community.

Why do this?

  • Events introduce you to a ready-made community, where it’s easier to find new fans and new favorite reads.
  • Events and challenges are a great way to get inspired and motivated — others establish and host the event, so all you have to do is participate! No heavy lifting required.

Take a look through the event listings: you’ll find photography and visual art events, writing events, niche events (such as travel and food events), and one-time challenges. Use the drop-down menus to sort by type of event or topic. Find one that’s a perfect fit, or use this as an opportunity to try something new. The listings are continually updated with new events.

You can also use the Reader to search — try “events” or “challenges,” or get more specific. Look for photo challenges, poetry events, recipe challenges — whatever your blogging angle is, someone’s running an event. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by options, try our weekly photo challenge.

If you find an event you think’d be great for other 101 bloggers, let us know in The Commons.

Happy blogging!}

So off I went like an obedient puppy and had a look at the “event listings

Uh OH… “big mistake.. HUGE mistake” to paraphrase Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman!

Because now there are lots more challenges for me to do.. I wonder how I’ll fit my life in?!?!

So here’s what I am signing up for so far…

Motivational Mondays– Because let’s face it no one likes Monday.. I wonder if we would like Monday more if the weekend started on Tuesday and Wednesday?! Poor Monday.. support for Monday please! Personally I like Mondays because it means all the family piss off and leave me alone.. off to school off to work off to their lives and leave me with mine. Anyways find out more about Monday’s at: http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_event/motivation-mondays/    Motivational Monday comes with its own badge! badge-for-motivations-monday1

Tuesdays of texture- It’s on day a week.. might help my blog become more readable. We get to mess around with photos of texture.. I can do this like Bricks, or dirt, or bark or beach sand or beach shells or my favorite tree! Hey I’m giving away all my good ideas!  This Lady can’t go past a patch of Moss without taking a gazillion photos of it.. and here I was thinking I was the Only ONE!! Find out more here: http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_event/tuesdays-of-texture/

This next one is a once a month thing… I will need to somehow keep track of this.. like in my daily planner LOL

Photo Blogging challenge Listed at the first of the month, you have all month to take FIVE photos of the Challenge prompt. Then on the last day of the month you post your challenge. Find out more about that here: http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_event/photo-blogging-challenge-pbc/

That ought to keep me busy for a while, and hopefully make my blog postings more fun for people to want to read.

Oops.. found one more.. this is a personal favorite, I am ALWAYS taking “signs” photos…

{I would like to challenge you to take pictures of signposts and post it in a blog post. Title the post: Are we there yet? and add a photo of a signpost. To make it more fun please add your country and more or less where this signpost is. Please add a link to this page in order for others also to find this page and be part of the fun. If you would be so kind as to post a link to your page in my comments box it will be appreciated. Then I can see your great post as well. I will post the top 10 signposts every Sunday on my blog. I am excited to learn more about other countries and cultures. For the first week there is no theme. Just post any signpost that you see.}

Okay… no really that has to be enough.. I am STILL doing Fat Mum Slim‘s “Photo a Day Challenge” here is the December list…


Plus on Sundays “Biblical Sunday” – I will still be updating my Bible Studies because I know a few people read those.

OH! And I forgot.. duh how could I forget! I signed up for another month-long challenge with NaBloPoMo.. December is all about JOY! I am hopeful that I can find some and take some photos of it to blog about..


I am exhausted thinking about this… if it gets too much I can quit.. but if it doesn’t this blog will be hopping!! Come back and find out more!!


Journaling Prompts…

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Because you never know when you might need a good journal prompt!

30 Journaling Prompts for Self-Discovery


Tags:  Journaling

I often include different journal prompts on Weightless because I think it’s key to continually maintain a dialogue with ourselves. It’s part of building a healthy relationship, or rather a friendship, with yourself.

As Eleanor Roosevelt said, “Friendship with oneself is all important, because without it one cannot be friends with anyone else in the world.”

Here are 30 prompts, questions and ideas to explore in your journal to get to know yourself better.

  1. My favorite way to spend the day is…
  2. If I could talk to my teenage self, the one thing I would say is…
  3. The two moments I’ll never forget in my life are… Describe them in great detail, and what makes them so unforgettable.
  4. Make a list of 30 things that make you smile.
  5. “Write about a moment experienced through your body. Making love, making breakfast, going to a party, having a fight, an experience you’ve had or you imagine for your character. Leave out thought and emotion, and let all information be conveyed through the body and senses.” (A prompt fromBarbara Abercrombie ’s creative book Kicking In The Wall: A Year of Writing Exercises, Prompts and Quotes To Help You Break Through Your Blocks And Reach Your Writing Goals. )
  6. The words I’d like to live by are…
  7. I couldn’t imagine living without…
  8. When I’m in pain — physical or emotional — the kindest thing I can do for myself is…
  9. Make a list of the people in your life who genuinely support you, and who you can genuinely trust. (Then make time to hang out with them.)
  10. What does unconditional love look like for you?
  11. What would you do if you loved yourself unconditionally? How can you act on these things whether you do or don’t?
  12. I really wish others knew this about me…
  13. Name what is enough for you.
  14. If my body could talk, it would say…
  15. Name a compassionate way you’ve supported a friend recently. Then write down how you can do the same for yourself.
  16. What do you love about life?
  17. What always brings tears to your eyes? (As Paulo Coelho has said, “Tears are words that need to be written.”)
  18. “Write about a time when work felt real to you, necessary and satisfying. Paid or unpaid, professional or domestic, physical or mental.” (Also a prompt from Abercrombie’s Kicking in the Wall .)
  19. Write about your first love — whether a person, place or thing.
  20. Using 10 words, describe yourself.
  21. What’s surprised you the most about your life or life in general?
  22. What can you learn from your biggest mistakes?
  23. I feel most energized when…
  24. “Write a list of questions to which you urgently need answers.” (This is probably my favorite prompt from Abercrombie’s book.)
  25. Make a list of everything that inspires you — from books to websites to quotes to people to paintings to stores to the stars.
  26. What’s one topic you need to learn more about to help you live a more fulfilling life? (Then learn about it.)
  27. I feel happiest in my skin when…
  28. Make a list of everything you’d like to say no to.
  29. Make a list of everything you’d like to say yes to.
  30. Write the words you need to hear.
Journaling helps us figure out who we are, what we need and what we want. It can help us make better decisions, and focus on the very things that support us in taking compassionate care of ourselves and others.

What are your favorite journaling prompts? What are your favorite ways to check in with yourself, to get to know yourself better, to get inspired?

– See more at: http://spiritualityhealth.com/articles/30-journaling-prompts-self-discovery#sthash.QU33fXZz.dpuf

Blogtoberfest 2014- day 17- #TheDanielPlan


Monday: Mosaic Monday – make a photomasiac to show and write about
Tuesday: Talkative Tuesday – tell us about yourself
Wednesday: Wordless Wednesday – post a photo and no words
Thursday: Thankful Thursday – write about what you are thankful/grateful for, Throwback Thursday
Friday: Friends on Friday – write about another creative you admire, Flashback Friday
Saturday: Some/Six/Seven Thoughts on Saturday
Sunday: Sunday Snippets (started by {tinniegirl}) – My week in photos… A collection of photos from your week. No need for words. Let the pictures tell your story


“Some thoughts on Saturday”…

  • I didn’t make my 10,000 step total again today, yeah sure I could use the excuse my leg is sore ( it is) but man up Sheila and put your big girl panties on and get walking!!
  • This morning on the way down here (St Leonards Victoria) to our holiday place, I felt something on my face, I “assumed” it was a loose hair and went to brush it away and “it” fell into my bra! So I looked down and there was a massive HUGE earwig in my cleavage! (Sorry too much information) I HATE EARWIGS, almost as much as Maggots and millipedes… I hate slimy things and I especially HATE them down my BRA!! So I did the girly thing and squealed to my husband “GET IT OUT!!” Thank Heavens we were on the side of the road, he had stopped to get something from the boot for Star Son, so he ever so swiftly reached into my bra grabbed the intruder and threw it out the door! phew! Thank Goodness for Husbands!!  Needless to say the rest of the hour-long trip, I spent checking my hair, my clothes and the car for more Earwigs!
  • I went on a nice little walk, trying to get Chase asleep, it failed and instead I did 1.7 kilometer gossip session with my cousin Lee who is also down here this weekend, this brings my yearly total up to 378 kms of 400, so I am well and truly on target.
  • Good thing for today is I have smashed my daily water total, which according to my “water your body” app, for my height and weight I need to drink 2.4 litres and 9 mils… Dont even ask me how they got that number, but I have round it up to 2.5 liters and I am almost finished it and its only 9:00pm.
  • The other good thing was, I have started a new book called “The Daniel Plan” 40 days to a healthier life by Rick Warren. I have been looking at it for a while and then read a few reviews and after the news on Tuesday about my cholesterol and Glucose maybe its time to start! I loved Rick Warren’s book “A Purpose Driven Life” so I am sure I will love this one too. Find out more about the plan here: http://rickwarren.org


One section on the back cover of the book reads: “The concepts in this book will encourage you to deepen your relationship with God and develop a community of supportive friends who will encourage you to make healthy choices each and every day, the results for you: gradual changes that transform your life inside and out.”


This book  is an appetizing approach to achieving a healthy lifestyle where people are encouraged to get healthier together by optimizing the key five essentials of faith, food, fitness, focus and friends.

So that is my goal, between now and November the 1st, I am going to get all my health checks done, get my blood work done and see exactly where I sit, and then come November 1st, I will start this 40 day program. I will even blog about it with #TheDanielPlan40days. In fact to keep me focused on this goal I will start a new category for all the #TheDanielPlan40days posts!!

Blogtoberfest Day 13-




Monday: Mosaic Monday – make a photomasiac to show and write about
Tuesday: Talkative Tuesday – tell us about yourself
Wednesday: Wordless Wednesday – post a photo and no words
Thursday: Thankful Thursday – write about what you are thankful/grateful for, Throwback Thursday
Friday: Friends on Friday – write about another creative you admire, Flashback Friday
Saturday: Some/Six/Seven Thoughts on Saturday
Sunday: Sunday Snippets (started by {tinniegirl}) – My week in photos… A collection of photos from your week. No need for words. Let the pictures tell your story


Oh Wow.. writers block? me? This would have to be a first!

Tonight I have done my weekly “Blogging through the Bible with the Good Morning Girls” post (yes I am a day late.. but I’ve been inundated with sickness.).. number two daughter and my number one grand-daughter were here for a week because Amber was sick and Scarlett wouldn’t stop crying, so in the last week we have been to the Dr three-times and pathology twice and Amber’s on more antibiotics and lost 5.5 kgs which she cannot afford to lose, and poor Scarlett almost 11 months had a bad cold and coughs so hard she projectile vomits all over Grandma… so last Friday I was in the shower at 4;pm because there was so much vomit I wondered how something so little could hold that much of ANY thing in her!!  I have also posted my “Making your home a haven” challenge also with Good Morning Girls, so now we know what week two has in store for us. So then it comes time to blogging for this challenge and I am out of ideas…

Ummm…. Err….. hmmmm…. time for a Journal prompt.

Officially it’s “Mosaic Monday” but I added a heap of pics on Saturday for my birthday so I don’t want to add a heap more.. lets see what “The Health Journal” can help us with….

Okay, Better yet, I did my famous “Google” and found a site here: http://daringtolivefully.com/journal-prompts I accidentally typed in “women journaling prompts” it’s all good.

Here’s a few to get me started… I’ll add them to other posts as I use them!


Create Lists

You can create lists of many things, such as the following:

  • Places you’ve enjoyed visiting.
  • Things you’ve done that you previously thought you could never do.
  • The people you most admire.
  • Your favorite books.
  • Your favorite movies.
  • Your favorite songs.
  • Your top five short-term goals.
  • Your top five long-term goals.


Do you have anything you would like to confess (even if it’s just to the pages of your journal)?

  • Nobody knows that I . . .
  • Dear ____, it weighs on me that I never told you . . .
  • The biggest lie I’ve ever told is . . .
  • Is there anything you feel guilty about?  Is there anything you need to be forgiven for?
  • What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done?
  • What’s your secret desire?
  • What’s the most outrageous thing you’ve ever done?

Use Quotes as Prompts

Look at the following quotes and write whatever comes to mind when you read them.

  • “If your daily life seems poor, do not blame it; tell yourself that you are not poet enough to call forth its riches.” — Rilke
  • “I have always imagined that Paradise will be some kind of library.” — Jorge Luis Borges
  • “Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family.  Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.” — Jane Howard
  • “What in your life is calling you? When all the noise is silenced, the meetings adjourned, the lists laid aside, and the wild iris blooms by itself in the dark forest, what still pulls on your soul? In the silence between your heartbeats hides a summons, do you hear it? Name it, if you must, or leave it forever nameless, but why pretend it is not there?” — The Terma Collective
  • “Art is when you hear a knocking from your soul and you answer.”  Star Richés

The Most . . .

  • The most terrifying moment of my life was . . .
  • The most fun I’ve ever had . . .
  • The most surprised I’ve ever been . . .
  • The most disappointed I’ve ever been . . .
  • What are you looking forward to the most?

Visual Journaling Prompts

  • Leaf through a couple of magazines and cut out any images that catch your attention.  Use each one as a prompt.
  • Look through your photographs and choose a few to write about.
  • Buy art books that are at a discount and cut them up for images.

Three Things

  • Three things you can’t go without.
  • Three celebrity crushes.
  • Three favorite book characters.
  • Three favorite things to wear.
  • Three things you want in a relationship.
  • If you had to evacuate your home because of a natural disaster, what three things would you take with you?
  • Three pet peeves.
  • Three things you’d do if you weren’t so afraid.
  • Three favorite TV shows.

100 Things I Love

You’re going to make lists that will add up to 100 things you love.  Make sure you give an explanation for each of the things you add to your list.  For example, don’t just list your favorite restaurants, write down what you enjoy about each one (the warm bread they serve before the meal, the waiter who always remembers your favorite dish, the whimsical decor, and so on).

  • 10 Activities
  • 10 Restaurants
  • 10 People
  • 10 Foods
  • 10 Games
  • 6 Drinks/Beverages
  • 4 Desserts
  • 10 Paintings
  • 10 Web Sites
  • 10 Writers
  • 10 Famous lines from books/movies

Express Your Emotions

  • My saddest memory is  . . .
  • Some of the things that make me happy are . . .
  • How do you deal with anger?
  • How easy is it for you to forgive those who have caused you pain?
  • What is the dominant emotion in your life right now?

Rituals and Traditions

  • My favorite Sunday ritual . . .
  • The Holiday traditions I most look forward to . . .
  • Things I always did with my dad when I was small . . .
  • Things I always did with my mom when I was little . . .

Ask “If” Questions

These prompts were inspired by the book If… (Questions For The Game of Life).

  • If you could have dinner with anyone currently alive, who would it be?
  • If you could meet any fictional character, who would it be?
  • If you could change one thing about your present life, what would it be?
  • If you could live anywhere you wanted, where would you live?
  • If you could go back in time and change one things from your past, what would it be?

Memories From Your Childhood

  • What was your favorite toy?
  • Did you ever get lost?
  • Who was your best friend in elementary school?
  • Did you ever run away from home?
  • As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
  • What was your favorite subject in school?
  • Who was your favorite teacher?
  • What’s your first memory?
  • What was your favorite cartoon?
  • What book did you read over and over again as a child?
  • What is your most vivid memory of the kitchen in your childhood?
  • As a child, who was your favorite relative?

Thinking of the Week That Just Ended

  • Who made you feel good this week?
  • What was the biggest mistake you made this week?
  • What did you do this week that moved you closer to reaching your goals?
  • Is there anything you did this week that you wish you’d done differently?
  • What did you most enjoy doing this week?
  • How did you procrastinate on important tasks this week?
  • What did you learn this week?
  • What’s the funniest thing that happened to you this week?

Write a Letter

  • Write a letter to someone you need to forgive.
  • Write a letter to someone who believed in you even when you didn’t believe in yourself.
  • Write a letter to be read by each of your loved ones after you’ve passed away.
  • Write a fan letter to your favorite actor/actress.
  • Write a letter to the editor of your favorite magazine telling them what features you would like to see included in the magazine.
  • Is there something you’re reluctant to tell someone?  Write a letter to help you organize your thoughts.

Landmark Events

  • Write about your first dance.
  • Write about your first crush.
  • Write about your first week in college.
  • Write about your first job.
  • Write about the first apartment you ever rented.
  • When did you feel truly independent for the first time?

The Sky’s the Limit

  • What would you do if you knew you could not fail?
  • What would you do if money were no object?
  • What would you ask for if a genie granted you three wishes?
  • What’s your wildest dream?
  • What would you do if you could live a day without consequences?
  • What grand adventure do you wish you could go on?
  • If you could become an expert in any subject or activity, what would it be?
  • What would your perfect day be like?
  • Close your eyes and imagine the kind of world you would like to see.  What is it like?

An Ode To Your Uniqueness

  • What makes you unique?
  • How do you stand out from the crowd?
  • What are your best character traits?
  • What are you really good at?
  • How would you describe yourself?
  • How would your best friend describe you?
  • What character traits do you need to work on?
  • What are some of your idiosyncrasies?
  • How do you indulge yourself?  Do you need to indulge yourself more often?
  • How do you think others see you when they meet you for the first time?

So there I have got a blog post done and some suggestions for future blog posts.. my work here is done!


Blogtoberfest 2014- Day Three…


Monday:  Mosaic Monday – make a photomasiac to show and write about
Tuesday: Talkative Tuesday – tell us about yourself

Wednesday: Wordless Wednesday – post a photo and no words

Thursday:  Thankful Thursday – write about what you are thankful/grateful for, Throwback Thursday

Friday: Friends on Friday – write about another creative you admire, Flashback Friday

Saturday: Some/Six/Seven Thoughts on Saturday

Sunday:  Sunday Snippets (started by {tinniegirl}) – My week in photos… A collection of photos from your week. No need for words. Let the pictures tell your story.


Day #3: The healing power of music

I am back, I decided that since I was behind I might do two blogs in one day in an attempt to catch up.. or not.. seems that all is quiet in my house so I have a few extra minutes!

Then I saw the topic for day three and I really wanted to do this, I am going to attempt to add music to my page (wish my luck!)

As part of another challenge  I am doing  https://kimlhine.wordpress.com/2014/10/02/making-your-home-a-haven-fall-spring-challenge/

We have to play some soothing music, so I am looking forward to playing some worship music through the week.

I really believe in the Healing Power of Music. I know that when I am in a “mood” and I need cheering, I have a few songs that I can play and instantly I am feeling in a happier mood. When I am in need of a good spring clean, I pump the music put on some “Slap n the Cats”   

Loud and fast paced and it makes the cleaning, Oh so Much easier!! Or maybe something like this…

When you need to calm down and get over a temper tantrum, maybe something like this.. do some deep breathing, it calms you right down!



Journaling Journey


Journaling Journey is the name of a Facebook group that I joined a long time ago, every so often I check in and get some ideas for journaling prompts. I “used” to think that prompts were cheating but then in an art course I was doing we were given writing prompts as well and I discovered I really love them, especially on those days when nothing terribly exciting is happening at home and I have nothing to write about.. I’ll dig out a prompt and away I go. So imagine my delight when I see Nathan post in that group about a 30 day “digital journaling” course he is running for the month of October.. and guess what else? it’s FREE!! My price!

I’ve put the link up the top of this post so you can go and have a look at the course and possibly join, no it’s not too late it will start from Day one whenever any one wants to sign up, so no catch ups or rushing required.

Taken from Nathan’s website- http://www.easyjournaling.com/30-day-digital-journaling-challenge/

  • motivation, tips and tools for digital journaling
  • absolutely free
  • see if your keyboard can offer peace of mind, passion, clarity and purpose!

So watch this space because this is where I will be doing my digital journaling, some of it at least, I will check in here and write little updates as I can. I also signed up for Diaro a free App that I can use to do my journaling on so I am not sure yet which I’ll play with. I revitalized this Blog with this challenge in mind so we shall see, come back and check in..

Do you Journal?

  •  Yes! I have several journals, my main one sits on my bedside table and I write in it several times per day.
  • Camping Journal which I called ” The Adventures of Tamara Tent” and I add all the info, weather, distance traveled, fuel stops, weather, camping sites, I add feathers, receipts, stickers, all kinds of stuff, even tree bark!
  • Jelly baby Journals- One for each other my Grand children, life from Grandma’s point of view, my idea with these are to have them printed and bound into books for their 21st birthdays!
  • Bible Journal- two actually, one is in a pretty note-book where I do all kinds of female stuff like “wives of the bible” series and “Husband encouragement challenge” all female related stuff. The second one is an A5 ring binder which has tabs for different bible studies, so when I am doing my bible studies on “females” I have a divider page called “women of the Bible” and when I am doing Men like the Apostles I use “Blokes of the Bible” and then regular “bible studies” for the other things.

Do you hand write or digital journal?

  • Currently I am hand writing my notebook journal but looking forward to starting digital.

Do you add “stuff” to your journal? art, fliers? ticket stubs?

  • When my husband and i have a “date day” I will add the tickets, fliers, receipts, serviette/napkin, even a drink coaster, lots of stuff gets stuck in I have “lumpy” journals. Sometimes I even stick in a plastic ziplock bag to hold more stuff.

Why did you start journaling?

  • I was going through a rough patch in my marriage an older lady had just written her memoirs and published them for her children, and I was very blessed to be offered a chance to read it, who would have thought that this lovely little old Grandma had led such a thrilling,terrifying, exciting life? to look at her not me! we spoke about her writing and she said to me “start writing now, don’t stop and you have something important to say” So I started from the earliest memory I could think of and wrote and wrote and I have never stopped. So many pies of notebooks.

How old were you when you started?

  • I was turning 30

Now it’s your turn if you want to play along, simply copy the questions and answer into the reply box, can’t wait to hear from you.

Following up of Self Sabotage Demons..

This week has been horrid, I’ve felt empty sad and mostly disappointed. Then this morning I got this email from Rachelle and it was so suited to me the irony was not lost and I smiled… she’s even got my phrase “This too shall pass” which I just wrote to my sister-in-law in an email,  who said not to be too sad.

Rachelle said:

Hello magpies, 

You may recall that after The Care and Keeping of Gremlins, I said we’d talk about Taming Your Monkey Mind. But I changed my mind. (I’m whimsical that way.) Instead we’ll be talking about Managing the Crazy. (That’s timely, right?) It’s a long one, but ever-so-handy. So make yourself a cup of tea and let’s settle in.

 Managing the Crazy

Creative personalities are often a little bit up and down. We struggle with depression. The highs and lows of the creative cycle toss us around. We at once need creative input, and shirk from being over-stimulated.

I believe creative people see things differently. Sometimes this makes you feel a bit mad. The key is to manage the crazy, so the madness becomes an asset.

Once while talking with my amazing life coach, Jena Strong, I mused out loud:

“I wonder what it would be like to be even-keeled?”

To which she immediately replied:

“Why would you even wonder about that?”

Clearly, I am never going to be even keeled. Why waste energy wanting it to be otherwise? I might as well turn it into a super power.

Managing the Crazy is a big field of study. In my book, it includes Abundance -vs- Jealousy, Seasonal Patterns, HSC Power Moves, and Confidence Schizophrenia. But for today, we’ll look at what I consider to be the bedrock concept you need to Manage the Crazy, the Creative Cycle.

Understanding Your Creative Cycle

Over the years I’ve noticed that most creative people have a pattern to their work. Whether you paint, plant churches, or launch a businesses – this birth cycle will be familiar to you. Just being able to recognizing the stages is a good first step towards feeling less nuts in the midst of it.

The Creative Download
 In this stage you are full of ideas. You might make lots of lists, or wake up in the middle of the night with plans running through your head. This often fluctuates with the seasons, or even with the stars. (I usually experience a download when the Winter turns into Spring, and again when the kids go back to school in the Fall.)
Common Emotions: excitement, euphoria, anticipation, panic, anxiety. 
Handy Mantra:  “The Right Thing with come at the Right Time.”

Decision Making
 At this point you have do some soulwork in order to decide which of your gazillion projects you want to lay your hand to. You may be tempted to rush past this important step – especially if you are the parent of young children, or if you are working full-time while also pursuing your creative projects. The idea that you are “wasting time” can loom large in this stage. You may feel pressure to just get started on something. Yet it is essential that you spend time playing with your various ideas – researching what you’d need to execute them; checking out how others have done similar work; and doing some preliminary “sketches” and tests.  It’s also important to learn how to redefine “failure” as “the learning process.”  (More on that at some future date.)
Common Emotions: confusion, flip-floppiness, curiosity
Handy Mantra: “Nothing is Ever Wasted.”

Active Labor
Anyone who has given birth knows this is when the hard work really kicks in. (Well, actually, what they don’t tell you is that the hard part is the NEXT FIVE-TO-EIGHTEEN YEARS…. But I digress.) To push the birth metaphor a little further, this stage is when you have to stop decorating your dream nursery and get to the dirty work. Now you actually have to write/paint/learn how to use your camera/show you work/accepting critique/attach price tags. This is where people often get stuck. You’ll need doulas and midwives, and quite possibly, cheerleaders. If you can get well into this stage, you’re mostly there.
Common Emotions: excitement, fear, resistance, doubt, confidence, impatience, anticipation
Handy Mantra: “One Step at a Time.”

In this stage you’ve got the bulk of the work done. You are probably in the final edits; or you are waiting for the last piece of artwork to get finished; or you need to overcome one more technical difficulty. Some people are great finishers. But a lot of creative souls flounder here. The end is almost in sight – and then you get stuck in a slow motion run to the finish.  If you follow me on Twitter, you can tell I’m in the Finishing stage when I threaten to never, ever write again. (I am not a good finisher.) If that sounds familiar, you probably need a partner who is good at the final stretch. Other helpful things include: detailed lists of what’s left, rewarding yourself for getting bits done, and a solid due date or deadline.
Common Emotions: despair, befuddlement, reluctance (Sorry, I couldn’t think of any positive ones here. Maybe you can?)
Handy Mantra: “Breathe the next breath. Write the next line.”

Post Partum Depression
Actually, there’s another stage before this, The Launch – in which you actually give your gift to the world. But that’s usually pretty euphoric. (Are you saying, “Au contraire?” Tell me all about it so we can grow the pool of wisdom!)

We’ll skip ahead to the bit just after the birth, where your project is out there in the world. It’s probably getting a lot of nice things said about it. Maybe it’s getting some criticism as well. But overall I bet it’s going pretty well.

So, why are you so depressed? 

It’s the hormone stew. In the past weeks/months/years you’ve been up, you’ve been down. You’ve put your soul into something – and probably your free time and money to boot. You’ve risked. You’ve cried. You’ve celebrated. Your emotions have been all over the place. And you’re probably a little worn out to boot. It’s okay. That bubbling pot of postpartum hormone stew will slow to a simmer. Things will settle down eventually.
Common Emotions: feeling “let down” or lost, vague disappointment, itching for the next thing (but what?)
Handy Mantra: “This Too Shall Pass”

Fallow Time
This stage can actually come at various places in this cycle. Sometimes it is quite subtle, but it’s an important part of the process. Smart farmers know that you need to let the land go uncultivated from time to time. A field might be covered with a layer of compost for a growing season. Or it could be planted with a cover crop which when plowed under puts nutrients back into the soil. Our creative growing cycles need fallow time as well.
Common Emotions: “laziness,” a desire for rest, “mindless” entertainment, hermit-y-ness
Handy Mantra: “Honoring the need for rest is good for creative recovery.”

Which stages of the cycle stand out for you? How do you manage them? Do you have other stages that aren’t listed here? Tell us more, and add to our giant pool of wisdom.

Next Week: “Taming Your Monkey Mind.” How to focus when you get distracted by sparkly things. (For real this time!) 

Thanks for being here.
Rachelle Mee-Chapman,
Your Magpie Girl

 So this week I’ve been in “post partum depression” everything Rachelle said has rang a bell with me.. so that means I’m in line for the next stage which will be next week when I escape from this cruel world and go away to my secret hideaway by the sea at St. Leonard’s on the Bellarine Peninsular. We have a holiday place there and I’ve called it “Bel Far Niente”  translated as “the art of doing nothing” and that is exactly what we do, nothing, no schedules, limited TV channels, no land line phone, no computer, I can be there and no one can see me or I can mingle with others. I can walk along the beach and breathe deeply and give myself that forgiveness that I have not given myself here at home. In other words I’m running like a wounded tiger to go away and lick my wounds, but rest assured I’ll be back, better than ever I hope!

For information about Rachelle and her site please visit: http://www.magpie-girl.com/magpie-speak-managing-the-crazy/comment-page-1/#comment-41285

Aussie, Aussie, Aussie..oi,oi, OI!!

So here is another little page that started off as a nothing kind of page.

I was watching a movie clip by Teesha Moore, you can read here blog here:http://teeshascircus.blogspot.com/2010/06/journal-obsession.html  about how when you open a journal and are confronted by nice white clean pages it can be daunting, and so she takes time out some days to sit and colour a stack of pages ahead of time so that when she gets to that page it’s not all white and scary, so I thought I’d take her advice, I mean, come one she’s been doing this much longer than I.

Trouble is by the time I get to use that page I don’t want that colour or the pattern I created on it. So I’m now going to STOP doing the pages ahead of time and work on them that day, it’ll take longer of course because then I’ll have to wait for the back ground to dry before I can do the page but so be it!

So yesterday I went back through one of the smaller journals and decided to just fill up the pages with something, I want to finish that journal and move ahead to the nice one I’ve started working on. Well I’ve only done the cover and the front three pages are stepped it’s a start!

Aussie Aussie

It all started off with the “Vegemite” label that was off a pack of Snacks, I keep the packets to use for other things but I am a Vegemite addict and so I cannot throw away a good “Vegemite” logo.. but what to do with it… then I saw this little gecko looking at me from a tyre commercial in the RACV book, so he came out as well and I could just hear him saying “No worries cobber we’re Aussies!” however, because it’s a small book I could not fit “Cobber” in and very nearly didn’t fit the “Aussies” in either, so I changed it to “mate” which is more like Aussie speak I don’t think anyone really uses “Cobber” anymore!

As much as I love this little gecko he doesn’t look finished to me so this could be a work in progress… I’ll update it as I do it I think.