Saturday, October 29, 2011

Journaling for wealth and health

I started journaling years ago, when I lived in the desert, struggling to raise my sons while remaining true to my vision. We lived in a shack which eventually had running water and an indoor toilet (the septic tank was an old refrigerator).  With three sons, their father, his brother, and two of their male friends --none of whom had jobs--I was very much outnumbered!. Even the cat was male! I decided that someday I would have my own home near the water in a place with trees.

Has journaling helped me to live the life of my dreams?

Yes. Before my sons were grown, I had my own home less than a block from beach on Puget Sound. I met and married my soul mate, joined an artists co-op ( a print studio), and began to show my art work publicly. Along the way, I finished college, wrote and illustrated a children's book, and got a "real" job, teaching children with special needs.

Atom's Monster is available from:
Twice Sold Tales on line
I still journal, and I still have dreams I am working on. Journalling helps me to clarify my thoughts, to think through my goals,  and to stay focused. It helps me to work through mental blocks and obstacles that at first seem insurmountable. Journaling helps because, as MacIver of Heron Dance says, there is

the need in this fast-paced world for each of us to get away from the day to day chatter and distractions that dominate our surface mind and travel deep inside the long term trends and potentials of our lives. 

Here are some ways journaling helps create mental health, according to Cherrye S. Vasquez, Ph.D.:

  •  Journaling will give you an outlet for pent-up emotions as youdeal with day-to-day life issues
  • Journaling will allow you to dream as you give your ideas a name while moving toward success
  • Journaling will allow you to gain insight with a clearer vision of issues you've gone through during daily blunders and mishaps
  • Journaling will allow you to remain honest with yourself as you sort things out in privacy, while becoming renewed and changed
Do you journal? What are some ways you clear your mind and focus your thoughts?

Friday, October 28, 2011

heART exchange and 7 days of JOY.

Just downloaded a mini-gratitude book from Louse Gale. What a fantastic idea for chasing the winter blues away! She's founded a heART exchange, to "raise the consciousness of the world, one by one through practicing self-care, love, kindness, forgiveness & gratitude through creative expression." 

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Surviving the Dark with Art

Toward the end of October, the blue sky suddenly turns a dark forbidding gray. The relentless rain washes my mind into a dark hole. Sadness settles in, and all I want to do is hibernate. And that’s OK…for awhile…until the gray fogginess in my brain makes it hard to keep my life together.  Until the bills become due and there’s no way to pay them.

Over the years, I’ve learned a few ways to beat back the dark. Friends help. Stepping out of  myself to do a good turn for someone else helps. Most of all, creating a bit of beauty helps. My favorite surviving the dark images are bright yellow or orange flowers or butterflies with a blue or dark blue/gray background. The image can be primitive or stylized—even abstract.

I hang the image on the wall, and it lifts my spirits all winter long!

What are your favorite ways of beating back the dark?

Friday, October 14, 2011

True Riches--Enduring Joy

An eagle flew over our heads as we performed the Qi Gung movement "fly like an eagle" on the beach this morning. Outside the harbor, a north wind kicked up whitecaps against an outgoing tide. Inside my body/mind, a sense of peace feeds a song of joy.

A broken stock market cannot rob me of riches such as these. The joy in my soul is like the pearl Jesus speaks of, or like the ecstasy Michael Mead was referring to in this quote:

Happiness, like happenstance, can come or go on a whim; but joy is an exaltation that remains in the soul, an opening to the realm of spirit that alters our nature.” 
– Michael Meade

An Opening to the Realm of Spirit.  Enduring Joy. Yes. That's it. That's what I want to give you through my art. True riches.

This scarf, inspired by a madrona tree at a local beach, is for my friend Joy.  It isn't finished yet; you can see the salt crystals that will give the tree the texture of madrona leaves.

These scarves are among those I will offer for sale at Saturday Market tomarrow.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Chaos is not the Enemy

silk scarves in the making
That black liquid in the back of the refrigerator? Don't throw that out! That's extra strong coffee for dying cloth.  The can opener? I think we're keeping it on the counter by the bread maker this week. That yogurt container labeled "Fish Stock" contains spaghetti sauce.

Every room in my house is part library, part studio, and part whatever it is supposed to be. Yes, I have picture frames stacked in my bedroom, paints and watercolor paper in the office,  good reading books in the bathroom, and more art supplies and books by the washing machine. Sound chaotic?

Although my sons play computer games where the bad guys are from "Chaos", I never considered chaos to be the enemy. Imagine my delight to find this quote!

"One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star." - Friedrich Nietzsche

I must be giving birth to dancing stars!

Still----it would be nice to be able to find the spaghetti sauce when it's time to make dinner!