Refresh

Last week was huge. I found myself arriving at the weekend tired and feeling a little unwell. I spent most of Saturday doing catch up, all the while trying to quiet the little voice inside my head that kept calling to me, telling me “you need to take yourself on an Artist’s Date..” A little like the beacon light on a lighthouse, it just kept popping up and could not be ignored!

Julie Cameron, author of The Artist’s Way first introduced me to the idea of an Artist’s Date along with a few other wonderful ideas I still maintain today. When I keep these simple rhythms I find my days go a whole lot better. The Artist’s Date is a ‘not negotiable’ for me and definitely feeds my creative heart – in fact, I would say for anyone. It’s such a simple way to revive.

The Lighthouse North Mole

AN ARTIST’S DATE

It was the weekend, busy but quiet because the man was at work and the boy, asleep, but as the day wore on, the little voice grew louder. Something in me longed for water and not the drinking kind. I was yearning for the sea, to breathe in the salty air, drink in the azure colours of a vast ocean.

My heart had been longing for the sea for days, to slow down, to take the time to breathe in a little deeper. Eventually, when I couldn’t quiet the ‘beacon’ any longer, I responded, quickly grabbing my bathers, towel and a book – I was off!

How that one decision to find a river, an ocean, made such a difference to my weekend. It set into motion a chain of events that left me refreshed and ready for the coming week.

I can’t recommend enough the benefits of taking a little creative date with just yourself or the benefits of being immersed in nature, whether it be sea n sand or tree n sand.

TAKE YOURSELF ON ARTIST’S DATE Julia Cameron says, ‘it is a block of time, perhaps 2 hours weekly, especially set aside and committed to nurturing your creative consciousness….”.

Essentially it’s just an outing or a ‘play date with yourself’ – One you defend at all odds.

Do give it a go and take note of how you feel afterwards ❤️

The ‘One Thing’ Dilema

It’s Thursday. I have a day off from my ‘day time’ job. I slept late, something I rarely do anymore, even if I want to. I’m usually up early with the birds and would like to say that today’s sleep in was good, but I feel groggy, slow and void of motivation.

Last night I went straight from work to Band practise. Perhaps that’s why I’m tired. This use to be my one thing, the thing that I loved doing most of all. In the past I’ve written so many songs, led worship more times than I could count and in the early days sang in the very quirky band called ‘Rockin’ Rabbi’s’ note: this vid is from after I’d left to have baby number two and later, started a band called ‘Sweet Chariots’ where I strummed my trusty old guitar and sang the blues with my sister and a friend. My brother recently found some old footage which needs work but here’s just a snippet of our big hair crazy days!

These were ‘star days’ when we got to perform for crowds in a diverse range of places. From City Markets or Youth Events to Club Genesis, (which started in the Leederville Tafe, then moved all over the town) to even supporting Chris Falson at the Belvior Amphitheatre, it was the 80’s, need I say more – we had good times. But I’m no skilled musician and often get frustrated at my lack of technical ability – playing to a click track drives me batty and reading music is frankly, quite out of my league, tho I pretend at times! Everything I do comes from heart and flows from somewhere within. So, despite what I consider a ‘lack of skill’, this was my chief joy. I guess it my first ‘One Thing’, and in some ways my ‘first love’ (needless to say, this is, apart from Jesus – though actually it’s all very central to Him, all so connected.

Then, as years went on and even tho I’d had quite a hoot of a life, the wheels fell off this old cart and I began, quite inadvertently, to write. I’d always written journals, always – but never had it entered my mind to write a book. In some ways, songs were my book!

This new book writing just happened. A pretty hectic childhood and an enemy called ‘disappointment’ led me down a path where I found myself void of joy. I needed help and when finally it came (in the form of ‘God with Skin On’ ) I could hardly speak about it, so I wrote. There-in began healing, my writing journey and a sense that I had to tell this story.

This became my ‘One Thing’ and almost superseded song writing by the piano. As I said in my last post, life goes on, we start new ventures and things Morph. The things we use to do, we don’t do them so much any more and I wonder now, if I let my first love go, when it should have abode, side by side with my new love – a marriage made in heaven?

Less song writing and more book writing. This was my new mission and even though I felt the importance of the new journey, I still let other things get in the way and slowly both took a back seat.

Why do I do this? Am I the only one?

Stay tuned for the unfolding story……

One Thing

Am I just a dreamer?

Have you ever asked yourself this question?

To be honest I probably ask myself the question on a very regular basis. If you know me at all you’ll know I’m an ideas person and because of this I tend to have too many things on the go, often all at once, Lately I’ve been assessing how I am really going. Am I really making any progress?

I’ve found that as one begins to make progress toward goals, toward dreams, things can often change. This past year of juggling working both in and out of my home, I’ve watched my dreams morph. I’m doing things I hadn’t even thought of a year ago and even though everything I put my hand to is still connected, I ask myself the question “am I staying the course?”

I do love the unexpected journey and yet I still need to take stock.

Yes, it’s true, I can be a little like ‘Ricochet Rabbit”

So if you add R.R. together with the pace of our modern lives, one can only imagine the numerous projects I can dream up and indeed, start! Did I mention the book? Still unfinished. How ironic, today I spent the first hour of my day completing the edit of a friends book. We both began our books in Italy just two years back. Mine still remains unfinished and yet I’ve managed to find time to start so many other things! It says it all.

One Thing: Just One Thing – if only!

I’m sure I’m not the only person like this. I’ve noticed more and more that people are changing. Correct me if I’m wrong, but unless one chooses to be intentional, chooses to make changes to the pace of life, one may fail to enjoy the small, simple things. Beautiful things that could make our lives so much more meaningful. Be it the reading of inspiring words or taking time to just sit and ponder. Enjoying a slow walk to find beauty in your street: majestic trees, awe inspiring flowers or maybe taking time to stop and talk to a neighbour instead of a cordial ‘hello’. Perhaps you’ve become too busy to make extra time for family and friends. I’m at fault here, often wanting to speed up a visit in hope that I can fit more into my day.

Even as I write this blog I know that many will struggle to read on this far and that’s ok. I write for my self as much as for others.

HOWEVER…

Should you like to read on I will finish this later, after I’ve taken my own advice and taken time to savour the warm afternoon sun. I’ll come back and share with you my experience over the past year, my morphing dreams and my unexpected journeys and the importance of one thing!

Be sure to fill out below so you wont’ miss the next chapter. For now, I’m off to take time to be still, to contemplate.

a whirlwind week

I’m a working girl and a mad keen creative. If I don’t get to create something in my week, I’m a little out of kilter. (BTW what does that mean anyway? I just had to go and look it up even tho I kinda knew, but to put it correctly it means, ‘not properly adjusted, not working well, out of order)

As usual my week starts with long days at work – starting early and not often not getting home until close to 7pm. Needless to say by Thursday I’m a tad tired and in need of a welcome day off. Feeling tired doesn’t usually stop me tho – I generally get up early and get straight into creating.

Not so this week, I had to head south to help out with my daughters kids. An impending hospital visit and I was needed. Add in a car that needed to be delivered and in the end, needed not to be delivered so was brought it home again (long story but let’s just say, a little added stress and my journey lengthened) but this is the what you do willingly for your kids – you love them, sometimes you just want to make their lives easier, no matter the cost to you.

So, late afternoon, Thursday, after an emergency dental appointment to rebuild a broken tooth, I headed South arriving that night to a peaceful home – little ones sleeping soundly, resting for the busy day ahead. A sweet cuddle with the new addition and then, early to bed. I too needed rest so I could spend the next day with the little man doing some fun things. We did have fun, and later in the day I cooked up a meal to enjoy with family, a visit with the little cousin and and expectant papa and mama, soon to deliver a new cousin. I hoped this new little bundle would arrive before I had to shoot off home again. But he wasn’t ready yet.

This little patient arrived home safely and we all enjoyed a rather noisome meal together.

Family time – I love it dearly – even if it is rather chaotic and noisy. It’s still sweet.

Family left for their beach dwelling and the others went to bed. I did what I do well, clean and shine so the I could leave in the morning knowing that I’d been a blessing and lightened a load, if only for a day.

Lights dimmed.

Home hushed.

Goodbye little family. I’ll be back before you know it.

Now I’m back home in the city, creating again and even tho this week was and exhausting whirlwind and it’s almost time to start again, I feel satisfied, blessed by my somewhat tiresome but lovely little adventure.

This is real life.

Re-Fashion Challenge

After another wonderful hit of Margaret River Roasting coffee, I headed off to my local Charity Shop located only a few minutes up the road. I have tried a number of times to visit this one as it’s so close to home, but it was never open, so when I found a lovely lady at the door to greet me, I was super stoked!

In under an hour I scrummaged though all they had to offer and found some real treasures. Not just clothing!

SO NOW TO THE

NOVEMBER CHALLENGE

WARDROBE RE-FASHION

There were a lot of options but in the end I chose the little mustard, patterned frock. I do like the word “FROCK’ it doesn’t get used that much any more but it is a lovely descriptive word…. “frock”

The arms of this dress are way too long for me, they are triangular, the kind that drop in the sink when you’re doing the dishes , so they will have to go!

Other than that, I think it may not need any other adjusting. I’ll keep you informed on my progress.

The Colorado Bag was a real score, it’s in great condition but I’ll polish it up with some lavender wax which in turn, will nourish the leather and those leather boots are so so good! Nothing to do except enjoy them.

So my friends, I hope you will join in the fun and journey with me to be more mindful about sustainable living and remember if you haven’t signed up for the challenge you can fill in the contact form below and I’ll keep you posted.

Most importantly I’d love you to post your finds on Write_Make_Create

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Thrifty Thursday

SO IN A FEW MOMENTS I’M HEADING OUT ON A LITTLE ADVENTURE.

I’m off to find someone else’s trash, and turn it into treasure.

As you know I’ve been pondering sustainability lately, a little more than usual. I want to up the anti and be more mindful about this. I’m learning how to tread a little more gently on our earth.

You know, if we could all do just a little bit more to reduce our waste it would equate to quite a lot.

This week I’ve been thinking about putting a little challenge out to you, in fact maybe a few challenges, but for now, I’d love you to join me for November’s challenge.

It’s quite simple really, so there’s no need for commitment phobia (tho I do understand as I know I sometimes get this) I promise it’s no biggy and you will enjoy the challenge. You can choose to jump on in full speed or just do one simple challenge and feel good that your one simple choice will make a difference.

NOVEMBER CHALLENGEWARDROBE RE-FASHION

So what does that mean, you ask?

Well, it just means find something second hand or you could even take something you have already, instead of buying something new (by new, I mean second hand but ‘new to you’). It may well be just the fabric that you like – you don’t have to like the style or then again, it may be the style you like but the garment is too big or small.

Photo by Artem Beliaikin on Pexels.com

Whatever the case, grab and change it. Re-purpose it then wear it or to use in your home. For instance, you might buy a few outfits and make them into a table cloth or a coach cover or a curtain. Anything is possible as long as you re-use it.

I’d love to hear from you and love you to join me on the journey.

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Stay tuned – I’ll pop back in to show you my finds later and you can follow along at Write_Make_Create xx

Living Simply

I’ve always been drawn to the simple life.

For the most, I’ve tried to live that way but I confess, over the years circumstances have caused me to let go of some of what I held dear and I think I lost my way, just a little.

Lately I find myself being drawn back to this simplicity I once dreamed of.

We live in a world where we can have it all and a silent mantra quietly calls out to us… ‘you need more, you need more’. In a never-ending barrage of media-driven advertisement, we are subtly drawn into the web and the call to consume, consume, consume constantly calls.

Quite frankly, it tells us we can have more and BE more, even when what we have and what we are is already ENOUGH.

I’m finding, in the endeavour to BE all that I’m created to be, there is a fine line that I sometimes cross in my pursuit of ‘the dream’. Before I know it, I’m running like a ‘nit in a fit’ all too fast to enjoy the ride.

Isn’t enjoying the ride what it’s all about?

Life can get away from us too quickly.

There is a danger that….

One: We’ll just ‘endure’ the ride always looking for that “place” to finally disembark, forgetting to ‘enjoy‘ the journey. We get stuck on ‘destination drive‘, constantly crying out ‘are we there yet, are we there yet?

or maybe,

Two: We’re the proverbial hamster on a wheel sporting a windblown grin, running aimlessly to somewhere, totally unaware that we’ve actually lost our way, our ‘true north’, we’ve become another person and we don’t even realise it.

I’m happy to say, as I’m getting older I hear the warning bells ring a whole lot earlier and I can simply take stock of where I’m at. I’m learning to make small but necessary adjustments so I can slow down, breathe in the beautifulness that life has to offer and remind myself that the race is not won by speed but steady intentional steps.

In the fullness of time, I know everything will work out for my good and I can be confident that I will ‘finish strong’. (more about that later)

I wonder if you need to take some time to look at how your life is tracking.

Are you speeding off into the future, perhaps losing your ‘true north’?

Are there adjustments you could make to find calm, to embrace a slower more intentional life?

Is there something your persueing that could be left til later? Remeber the race is not to the swift? Maybe it’s ok to put it on the back burner for another season. (Life is all about seasons you know)

Are there ‘things’ that perhaps you need to shed (both physically and spiritually) Identify the ‘stuff’ that weighs you down and makes you’re life and home cluttered.

Will you make more time to do the things that feed your spirit. I know how much difference this can make. Maybe this week you can start to identify what you love the most and begin to move towards making time for these things.

Photo by Nandhu Kumar on Pexels.com

It’s all about balance and adjustment. Being mindful of when there needs to be a shift. Once our ‘tank’ is full, we can easily move toward productiveness and, visa versa, when our tank is getting low, just make the simple changes to refuel and recharge.

It’s that simple.

KEEP AN EYE OUT FOR THE NEXT BLOG “FINDING BALANCE”

Self Care Getaway

It’s almost a whole month since I wrote about ‘self-care’. I’m happy to say that last weekend I took my own advice and went away for a little jaunt in the country.

At first, I thought it would be be too difficult to get away. My men had just returned home after being down south for almost three weeks, and even though I thoroughly enjoyed ‘me time’, I did miss them, leaving them so soon wasn’t ideal.

That’s the thing about self care.

Sometimes, it’s inconvenient.

Now, no-one could be blamed for thinking “hasn’t she just had more than two weeks alone – wasn’t that enough to fill her tank?”

To be honest, my body was very rested, but there was something not at rest within. I needed some time to reconcile and re-ignite one thing that had be nagging me.

It was the book – the one I was supposed to finish last year. I didn’t. Then there were some other complications that had me stuck. Really stuck where that was concerned. I needed a kick start and what better than a writing retreat in the country and better still, at a Benedictine Monastery?

“Goodbye Boys, I’ve gotta go do this.” and off I went.

I’m so, so glad I did.

New Norcia, The Benedictine Monastery and Amanda Vivier’s Writers Retreat were all so good for the soul.

Weeks earlier I’d set myself a goal.

‘At the retreat, I could and would, begin again. I would let go of what ‘lost motivation’ was doing to me. I would also let go of all the doubts that had become a constant nagging, telling me I was just a dreamer. I would simply start again, somewhere – anywhere.’

Setting that goal was pivotal.

The good book talks about fanning into fan the gift that we’ve been given. All too often we let who we really are get drowned out by the cares and weight of the world and more so, by the sound of your own self critic.

You’ve been made for purpose and by design. Remember that.

Perhaps you need a little self care this weekend to find yourself again, to revisit you, maybe just something you’ve let go.

I’m reminded of the lines in Rita Springer’s song, Defender.

“When I thought I’d lost me, you knew where I’d left me, you reintroduced me to your love. You picked all the pieces, put me back together – you are the defender of my heart.”

Go find what it is you’re meant to do. Be kind to yourself in the searching.

You won’t regret it.

Self Care Matters

I need to confess, I haven’t always been a good advocate for self-care. Frankly, I once thought it was – well, just a little bit selfish. Tragic, I know but circumstances and environment shaped me, leaving me with some stuff to sort through. Feeling worthy of self-care was one of them. No wonder I burnt out on more than on occasion.

Since our own ‘series of unfortunate events’ – an overseas accident and our journey with cancer, I’ve had to acknowledge that I need to listen more to my body, to my soul and to my spirit.

listen to the BODY

Even lately, after all the learning I have done, I’ve neglected to look after this temple I call my body. I’m walking around with an occasional limp, bearing the consequences but hoping I haven’t caused some permanent damage. A silly fall left me with an occasional limp that I hope, with some good ‘self-care’, will improve. An early morning trek through the woods of the Te Mata Peak in New Zealand late last year had me galavanting off track to take a close look at an incredibly large mushroom. I spotted it down my on the hillside and went off track to take a look. I got the photo I wanted but unfortunately, my footing slipped and PING – something broke.

Now, I’ve never really had to deal with my feet not being able to carry my body where it needed to go, so when a week later I needed to board a plane back to Perth, I should have taken the crutches with me – but oh no – superwoman chose to go it alone (in more ways than one).

I arrived safely, a little worse for wear. The boys stayed in NZ and fortunately snuck in just before the COVID lockdown. I spent months prior limping along streets, navigating public transport, sometimes in tears searching for a place to live. So, after using copious amounts of strapping tape and what seemed like an eternity of wasted time, God faithfully provided a home. I wonder now whether it was most likely the same one he’d set apart right from the beginning of my searching.

Why could I have not just put my ankle up and rested in the fact that he really is a GOOD GOOD FATHER who would provide for his child? Why did I worry when he’s never let me down yet?

listen to the SOUL

As a man thinks in his heart – so he is.

proverbs 23:7

Our mind, our will and our emotions. All these things that make us tick and neither is more important than the other. Oh how complicated we are and oh how important it is that we keep all these parts of ourselves healthy. What a minefield we are when things get out of whack.

I’m learning more each day to teach my mind to think good thoughts, honest thoughts, kind thoughts towards others and toward myself. This is self-care. I’m becoming more aware of patterns that could send me on downward spirals so I actively take captive of thoughts that could potentially pull me and others down – this is self-care at it’s best.

When it comes to my mind, my mantra for life has become a verse from the good book. “Whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things lovely, whatever is of a good report – I CHOOSE to think on those things.” It’s not always easy when life has thrown a curve ball or two, but if we can truly put this concept into action, the out working of it is pretty powerful.

I am still amazed how this simple truth works. It’s powerful stuff. It’s God stuff. It’s a father teaching his children stuff. The good stuff. It tool kit kind of stuff – equipping us for the struggles He knew we’d face.

listen to the SPIRIT

We are not our body but it does need to carry us until the time we depart earth. Nor are we just the thoughts in our head, which often lie to us.

While our body may at times become overly tired and a little worn out, and our mind may struggle to believe we could be all we’ve been created for, our spirit can still stand strong and guide us to truth- especially when one makes an undeniable connection with the creator, the one who know us better than we do, all our undeniable intricacies and even understands our weaknesses.

My view is that there is a spirit spot in each of us that won’t be satisfied until we find our way to that connection. Listen for the still small voice – it will lead you. If you haven’t found it yet – keep searching because there’s nothing quite like deep to deep – spirit to spirit.

(disclaimer: there's so much more I could say, 
so many practical things about self care - this is just a quick 
and hopefully thought provoking blurb)

write_make_create

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i’ve always been a dreamer. not in the bad sense of the word. i’ve always loved to create. when I was a little girl i made perfume from the flowers in the backyard and wondered if I could sell it. i just loved to make things. anything. when i was a teenager i tried to make varnish from goo that flowed from a tree trunk. i can hear you laughing. but I was a dreamer and i dreamed about what my future would look like. i dreamed about singing. singing on a big stage – and i did. i dreamed of owning a little cafe. i didn’t. life went on and my dreams grew bigger. some were realised. many were not. regret grew. it was ugly. creativity seeped away. i was disappointed. spring came. my eyes opened. new life came. a creative food business. and old dreams revived. new dreams to. write.make.create came into being.write.make.create is a space for you to grow. a safe place to unpack your dreams. fan them into flame. share your ideas & creations. find motivation. nuture clearer direction. grow in strength and faith. find passion and purpose. dream again. you may even be inspired to turn your passion to profit.

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