Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace and gratitude. -Denis Waitley

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Gifts Forgiveness

The gifts of forgiveness are not solely in the realization of one's own power and choice. They're also in the realization that when we forgive, when we powerfully choose who we are, we free ourselves up to see all of who someone else is.  Then we're fully free to receive all of the gifts they've got to offer, even the gifts that are twenty years in the past, and when that happens, there's such an expansion of feeling…blessed. Nurtured. Cared for. Loved.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Beach House Take Two

It's finally here!  Leaving today for take two of the beach house vacation-this time not under an evacuation order and with the husband.  I so need this week with the sea.  I am hoping it will help to heal my spirit-which has taken a beating this summer and start to heal the unrelenting ache I feel from Steve's absence.

We have made no plans-me the goal setter and planner, with no plans.....we are going to spend a week just being and let each day unfold. I guess technically I do have plans...I plan to wear shoes as little as possible, take naps, and drink wine.  I have also packed my art supplies so I can keep my commitment to do art for 30 days and my new camera to take "artsy" photos.

It is so easy to find joy at the beach house.  I am so looking forward to that-it hasn't come easily lately.  Life is easy at the beach house.  I love everything about it-bare feet, henna tattoos, beach bikes, sand castles, naps, finding the perfect shell everyday, breakfast at Olive (ya gotta go..if you get the chance), surfers and sunsets. It feeds my spirit and asks nothing of me in return.  Let the NOURISHMENT begin.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

I Believe in Pink

Three of my favorite goddess girlies
"I believe in overdressing. I believe in primping at leisure and wearing lipstick. I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day, and... I believe in miracles.” -Audrey Hepburn

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Get Messy

Good is towing the line, being behaved, being quiet, being passive, fitting in, being liked, and great is being messy, having a belly, speaking your mind, standing up for what you believe in, fighting for another paradigm, not letting people talk you out of what you know to be true.”~ Eve Ensler

One of the things I love most about painting is getting messy.  I love paint on my hands and elbows, even my nose and feet.  It feels rebelious, it makes me feel alive...and makes me a work of art too (well, I'm that anyway-even without the paint).  Life is kinda that way too.  You gotta get in and get messy to get to the good stuff and create your work of art. 

Do something messy today-get your hands in the paint, clay (playdough works),  bread dough, mud, frosting....doesn't matter/  Play!  Get Messy!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Giving and Receiving

So many people are really good at giving. And yet, pretty bad at receiving. I am   guilty of this myself-bigtime.  When I am stressed, I dig in and just get it done-never ask for help.  When I am hurting, I turn inward instead of reaching out for comfort.  I am always willing to help my neighbor, but refuse offers for help....I got this.

There are a few problems with living like this. When we give without receiving, we run the risk of depleting ourselves.  We miss an opportunity to allow ourselves to be full of love, joy, and abundance, and more importantly-we miss the opportunity to connect to another human.  Not allowing ourselves to receive is really an act of selfishness because in doing so, we deny the giver the opportunity to feel all of those wonderful things that come with giving. 

Receiving is an act of love, just as giving is.  Receiving nourishes our spirit and when we are full we can share ourselves. From that place, giving is easy and effortless. There is no risk of "compassion fatigue". The more gifts of love and other bits of goodness we allow ourselves to receive, the more giving we can be.

I have come to this realization because I am totally depleted, having cut myself off from all receiving while tending to my grief.  I got nothin' to give and it sucks.  Dr. Phil would ask "how's that workin' for ya"?  And I would answer, it served it's purpose but now it's time to allow myself to begin to receive again.  Receiving love is what caused this pain and receiving love is the only thing that will heal it. 

Today, I am opening myself up to receiving and commiting to be a better receiver.  I need to replenish my spirit so that I can in turn replenish someone I typed that sentence, the sun came out from behind the clouds and shined on my face.  Thank you sun, for the gift of warmth and sunshine-I accept.  

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Who Is Stopping You?

"Who is stopping you? You. It is not them. It is not a condition. It is not anything, but you. Every limit you see, you are creating. You are believing. You are buying into it. Someone telling you no, means nothing. That does not need to stop you. You get to persevere. You get to keep creating. You get to keep on going."~Tricia Huffman (Your Joyologist) in Wild Sister Magazine

Know This In Your Being

Know this in your being...
'The same force that makes a seed grow effortlessly, is the same force that makes your dreams grow... The difference is the seed doesn't doubt its purpose nor its ability!

Coming From a Place of Love

What you are about to do...
What you are about to say...
Has far reaching effects beyond you.
It matters.
Think kindness... think authentically.
Because when you start from a place of love
What you do and say radiates love.
And that is always good.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Excavation Process Update

It seems like whenever I make a commitment to something the universe makes it a point to test me to make sure I am really committed.  My commitment to live an authentic life has been no different.  I was almost immediately tested with the devastation of the forest around my town and the devastation of my heart with the loss of my friend.  But guess what, I am still standing firm in my excavation process.  Even my grieving is being done in a way that is mine and I am not concerning myself with what other people think I should or shouldn't be doing to heal....see progress.

I am working really hard to surround myself with only people, things and thoughts that serve me in a positive way.  Getting rid of all of my Negative Nelly acquaintances has been easy by just removing facebook "friends" who do nothing but bitch and complain. I have also tapped in to a group of incredibly creative and inspiring women who's blogs and facebook comments inspire me every day.  I am also in the process of decluttering my stuff-on every level.  I am trying to simplify the accumulation of my adult life.  The gremlins in my head are my biggest challenge to get rid off-the I'm not enough gremlins.  We are in a constant battle but right now I have the upper hand so I fully expect them to pack up and leave any time soon.  I am sure they will leave behind a baby gremlin to try to get to me...we'll see.

My commitmnt to making art everyday for 30 days has been easy.   The art is what's keeping me off the floor while I deal with the grief.  I have set up my painting studio in the sun room which is my mini beach cottage.  It is my favorite place to be right now and painting gives me such a sense of peace.    My goal right now is to keeping the painting about the process not the outcome.  Sometimes the outcome is well......less than fabulous, which is ok.  It's about what I learn during the creation process.

I have signed up for two art classes, both  I am really excited about (neither I have time for-but I am doing anyway).  One is a painting class with Dirty Footprints Studio and the other is a artistic photography class with Darra Parker Studios.  Both of these ladies are amazing and inspiring and I am so blessed that they have let me into their tribes.  I am also knee deep in The Love Bomb Revolution which I will tell you about later.

So, I think there is progress on my quest despite the grieving process and my need for silence.  I can tell you that I am more comfortable in my skin now than I ever remember being.....Miss Paisley is just under the surface, I can feel her.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Please Honor My Silence

How are you?  I can't tell you how many times a day I hear that right now.  Everyone who knows that I lost my best friend asks everytime they see me, talk to me or text me.  My standard response is "I'm OK" because it's easier than the truth.

The truth is I'm not OK, my heart is broken and has not even begun to heal yet. I am still trying to figure out who I am without my "no matter what" after 25 years of having him. I am certain that if someone pulls a loose thread on me, that I will unravel into a million tiny pieces.

I am not laying on the floor all the time anymore but there are still times when it's the only thing that helps.  I am upright most of the time but I sometimes have to hold on to something when I feel like I am spinning off into space. That's how I am.

And I am spending a lot of time in silence.  The silence is soothing to me.  The silence is necessary.  Please don't ask me how I am, or how he died, or who he was, or anything else about him in an attempt to be supportive-I don't want to tell you.  I am having trouble getting words to come out of my mouth right now.  All anyone can do to help me through this is honor my silence for as long as it lasts.  I will let you know how I am when I am something besides this.  Promise.   

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Fruits of Avoiding Homework

This is a mixed media piece that I have been working on as part of my commitment to 30 days of art....and homework avoidance.

Life Lessons the Beach Taught Me

Life Lessons the Beach Taught Me
Life has cycles-low tide and high tide-neither lasts forever.
You have to walk slowly to find the very best shells.
The shells you find are meant just for you.
Sometimes you just have to get in the water, even when it's cold.
When you catch a wave-ride it.
When you think you're in too deep, look for a sand bar. 
Sometimes you can't avoid the undertow.
Eventually the sun burns through the clouds.
Sunsets happen every single day.
Sand is part of the deal.
Sandcastles always get washed away, but the fun is in building it anyway.
There is beauty even in the rocky places.
Don't shake your towel downwind from other people.
Inactivity is just as important as productivity.
Joy is easier to find in barefeet.
Simplicity is the way to go-too many toys weigh you down.
Eventually, you have to go inside.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Overlooked Beauty

These photos are of beach sand magnified.  They are just a reminder of the beauty we often overlook .  Today, I am looking for the tiniest sources of beauty and joy in my surroundings.


"We have to take risks. We can only truly understand the miracle of life when we let the unexpected manifest itself." ~Paulo Coelho

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Gentleness by samosvoja
There is nothing stronger than gentleness.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Your Declaration of Independence

Today is a celebration of a declaration of independence for my country.  There are oh-so many connotations to the words: declaration and independence. But the one that seems the most prevalent is freedom. Freedom from being under someone else’s rules or authority. 

But here is the thing: Declarations are merely the first step of the process of freedom.


When a declaration is made, the declarer must stand her ground. She must oppose opposition and distraction to her declaration(s).  In order to determine a proper declaration, one {from the heart and} based in conviction {and not mere emotion} consider the following two elements:

1. Make it based upon your own choices.

And not derived from the choices and opinions of others. While it can be tempting to react in the heat of the moment, or to consult with friends for affirmation, be as sure {as you possibility can} that your declaration(s) are based in your own choices and preferences. Especially since in making a declaration, you will determine the necessary actions for the desired outcome.

2. Evaluate the situations and people you allow into your life.

Write your own story. You willfully decide the elements of your story. Vital elements include the way you spend your time and the people you allow in your moments. Who and what is important to you will be reflected in the hours {and angst} of your dailies. Resist default modes of thought and action. Meaning do not allow yourself to become deluded into believing that you are required to include specific people in your life; or that you must endure certain activities in your life “because you have to” … Because is not a reason.


You do not need approval or affirmation in order to live your intentions.

original post

How I Spent the Day

I have been working on these for a few layer at a time. I think they are finished, I am gonna leave them alone and just look at them for a few days to be sure. Anyway, I am really grateful that I had a FREE day to relax and CREATE. Nothing fills my spirit more than some messy art....accept the beach. Have been working on some art journal pages today too.....will post those later when they are dry.

Guess what I am doing today.  I am going to paint like a wild woman and challenge my gremlins.  I need some soul nourishment and this laptop isn't going to give it to fact I think sometimes my computer is quietly sucking the life out of me.

When I started the excavation of Miss Paisley, one of the orders of business was to make art, to reconnect to the artist in me, but I didn't set any specific goal so here it is.  Art in any form everyday for the next 30 days.   

Today I am working on a page in my Art Journal and breaking out a new canvas and acrylics.  I want to make something colorful and messy.....I don't care much about the end product, I just need to create today. I'll let you know how it goes.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Today it was a Robin

So this morning I am sitting outside with my coffee (ok, my cup of vanilla creamer with a splash of coffee), enjoying the morning air, the squirrels dancing (more like fighting)in the trees, and a faint breeze, when all of the sudden I have a little red robin hopping around my feet.   Unusual again because most of the birds are gone because of the fire, but also because they are never this friendly when they are here. 

Birds kinda freak me out so I tried to shoo it away, but it wouldn't budge.  It wouldn't leave me alone-hopped around my chair, stopped to look at me, tilted its head when I talked to it, etc........ok, better pay attention then.  So I enjoyed its company for 10 minutes or so. We had a good conversation and I took the time to notice how beautiful my little friend was.  Then we said goodbye, and it hopped on down the path.

Another gift from my friend? Maybe.  Maybe just a gift from nature.  Either way, I'll take it.  The robin is a symbol of  Joy, Hope, Clarity, Renewal, Simplicity, Happiness, Contentment, and New Beginnings.  My first moment of joy came early today....thanks SS, thanks little robin.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

A Raven's Gift

I was outside this morning trying to walk off the sadness that I woke up with, thinking about my friend, not really looking forward to the festivities of the day--how could they go on with a celebration when my best friend is dead.  Don't they know that time stopped on Monday?  As I am walking, thinking these things  in my path is a beautiful raven tail feather-stopped me dead in my tracks.  One because I haven't seen any ravens since the fire, and two because it was so perfect and beautiful as the sun shined on it.  I knew it was meant as a gift for me.

In Native American folklore, the raven is the gatekeeper to the other side, the messenger, considered the trickster/jokester, and a symbol of transformation and new beginnings.   As I picked up my new found treasure, I couldn't help but hear the deeply personal message being whispered to me as I stood there in the warm sun (can't share-sorry).  My first moment of joy since Stephen's death......I think it's gonna be alright.....I think I'm gonna be ok, not for awhile-but I am gonna be ok.   Miss you SS, please tell the raven I said thank you.