Saturday, November 30, 2013

Chain Of Love- A Story For Thanksgiving

 This last week.  It really started on Tuesday.  My good friend Matt came over to my house to help me with the project of the week.  We were going to build a lean to for the Von Trapp family, group of 3 Feral Cats another friend and I have been caring for.  The time spent with Matt was super great and the lean to is amazing.  That evening my friend Ute called me in distress.  She had just returned from feeding our cats and one of the new renters unloaded on her about getting the cats off the property (we had okay from the landlords).  We had been working to re-home our family, but no luck.  Now with our feet to the fire, we had to send up S.O.S. signals.  The energy moved at lighting speed.  Within 3 hours we had locations for our family in two homes with experienced and loving women, who knew feral cats.  We had cages to house them in.  We even had 3 humane traps.  It spun my head the number of positive and generous people who stepped forward.  We had donations for food, cages, litter, litter boxes and most importantly places to take our lovely cats.
Ute and I are not new to the rescue cat and dog world.  Between the two of us we know boats loads of stuff.  I want to add that we are also smart, resourceful, strong and creative.  When the world has to move we move it.  Yet there was some nervousness as we moved forward with our plans.  Tons of  "what ifs" and plans A, B, C, D, E and Fs hung in the balance. We were emotionally attached to these very special cats.  We both wanted so much for them.  It was my lesson on trusting the process and being in the moment.  All along this journey, remarkable people, strangers and near strangers stepped up. Hugs were shared. Bonds of community, created.  New things learned.  I shed tears of joy as the weekend unfold before us.

The evening of trapping rolled round.  We worked in darkness and feeling fortunate that the mean renters were out for the evening.  Bait was set with stinky mackerel.  The poppa cat, Capt. Moe Von Trapp appeared, we walked backed to Ute's house to wait.  We returned.  He calmly sat in the trap, next to him was a domesticated  black cat (not one of ours) thrashing around.  We released him.  Capt. Moe was gently placed in my car and taken to a new friend's garage for holding over night.  We repeated this processing two more times.  All were calm and quiet. We peeked in the traps, they all looked at us with so much trust and love, it was overwhelming.
We had our baby boy, Winn Dixie and his mama, Trixie.  We didn't see that black cat again.

The next morning, we transported Capt. Moe and Trixie out to the country.  We were greeted by another new friend.  She calmly and lovingly placed them in their cages.  It was beautiful, like a smooth dance.  We all sighed relief.  Capt. Moe gave me the "I love you" blink as he relaxed in his cage.  That was my reward.
Trixie quickly fell asleep in her little bed.  They will be able to be warm and inside all Winter.  Come Spring, if they decide they want to go outside, they can.  They are on a very loving and protected property. Really an outdoor "summer" camp for cats.

As Ute and I drove back into the city, we were ready to transport Winn Dixie. We commented on how this situation for them was beyond anything we had expected.  Little did we know that there were some more miracles to come.

That same evening we took WinnDixie to his foster mom's house.  He was placed in his cage, he quickly settled in.  He blinked at us, purred and we were able to pet him.  His new foster brother cats, of which there were many, came by, one by one to greet him and say hi.  Not a hiss in the group. Just pure welcoming love for him and he returned it.  He played through the cage.  We were all surprised.  He's doing fantastic!  And will be ready to have a forever home. He will do best with another kitten. He's not a feral cat.  He's just one amazing cat.

Exhausted from the week.  Yet filled with joy, love, friendship, community and magic.  Those three wonderful and amazing cats taught me to trust.  Trust that things will work out. Trust that I know a whole lot more than I think I do.  Things do get taken care of. Love. It's a complete sentence. Work from a place of an open heart. Be calm and strong.  Be still and allow the energy to work in ways that you can't even begin to imagine, as it will be better than you can imagine.  I'm grateful for this journey and for everyone involved.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Until next week...create to feel great!

44 projects complete! 8 to go!

The lean to...it's in my basement for now.  It was build for the Von Trapp Family, but now it will get used for some other wonderful cats in need.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

You Better Work

I heard several times this week, from various people, "that's going to be a lot of work.  You aren't going to want to do all that work."  These folks don't know me at all.  I'm a hard worker.  I've never mind doing work or hard work.  When did people get so shy of doing the work and making the effort?  There really is joy in hard work and putting the effort in. 
Many times when I hear "that's going to be a lot of work", I hear fear.  Fear of failure.  Maybe.  I can't say what their fears are.  I do know that one way of addressing the fears is to get in and do the work.  The real hard work.  Trust yourself enough to know you can do it.  That if there is something you don't know how to do or what to do, the teacher and the information will show up.  Instead of being steeped in fear, you'll be able to celebrate your accomplishments.  You just might even surprise  yourself.  It will feel good.  I encourage you to give it a try.  Next time hard work presents itself in your life, stare down that fear. Roll up your sleeves and do the work.

Until next week...create to feel great!

43 projects complete! 9 to go! 

This week's project...a cute little baby elf hat.  For you guessed it a cute baby elf!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Zen And The Art Of Upholstery

I'm taking a really fun upholstery class at a local community college.  I've been doing really bad upholstery on my own for years.  The furniture looked okay.  I have a chair that has been in Broadside's family for years.  We call the chair of the ancient cats, because every cat we've known for the last 40 years has slept on it.  The chair is super sturdy and if the springs were tied and the bad slipcover I did was replaced, it would be a wonderful chair to have in our house.  So, instead of just having someone do the work, I decided I wanted to learn how to do upholstery the correct way.

I had no idea that this class was being taught by the Zen Master.  He's really an unlikely Zen Master.  A hard working, rough around the edges, wise cracking, New Yorker.  Yet every week, I not only learn how to cover furniture in an expert manner, but little wisdom on life.
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This week as he was showing us placement of fabric on a fellow student's chair, announced to the class of timid women..."Never be afraid to pull out the staples.  You always have to be willing to pull out the staples.  You don't like how it looks, you have to pull the staples.  If it's not going the way you want it...pull out the damn staples and start over.  Never be afraid to pull out the staples.  It's like life.  If you stand there being afraid, you'll never get anywhere.  So, shoot the staples and if they land where you want the first time great.  If not.  Pull the staples.  Just like life.  No one ever gets anywhere being afraid.  You gotta act.  You gotta take a chance."

He's so on the mark.  Often times folks don't act, because they are afraid.  Afraid of making a mistake that can't be fixed.  So, they don't act.  They don't move forward.  We have to be willing to make a mistake, when a mistake happens or something doesn't go the way we planned, we have to willing to pull the staples or fix the mistake and keep moving forward. 

Great reminder.
Are you willing to pull the staples, as needed?

Until next week...create to feel great!

42 projects complete! 10 more to go!

This week's project is an sweet little bow tie for my kitty boy Sam.  Gus has a bowtie he likes to wear at Christmas time, and now his little brother has one as well.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Lining It All Up

I've written a few posts on energy and going with the flow.  Fighting it causes frustration. Frustration can cause anger and negativity.  At very least, it's not a comfortable place to be.
In the month since my wonderful friend and long time kitty, MickeyGrrrl passed, I've had so many lessons on going with the flow, lining up energy, going with the flow and engaging my creativity at every turn. These lessons have not given me time to worry, over think or allow fear to step in and stop me.  Accepting these lessons, really allowing my myself to be schooled and showing up for the tests has created some amazing result.  I've never felt more connected to myself and the world.  Clarity is coming in each moment.  My outlook is positive without even having to push it, it just is.
I'm realizing I'm seeing a purpose for things and my life.  It's all simple.  It's a BIG deal, but not a big damn deal.   This is an amazing place to be at. 

The main challenge I faced this month was in rescuing a senior kitty named Gabriella (now Gabby).  She had been abandoned three times, when we got to her.  She was a lovely cat.  My first gut feeling was to fix this, take her to my home and shower her with love and attention like I do with all my kitties.  I also knew that my boy cats wouldn't like it and that deep in my heart, she just wasn't my kitty.  She was here to help someone else and teach me a few lessons about showing up in the world.  She had a foster home she could be at for a couple of months.  With time ticking, fear struck me!  Dear Lord.  Finding a home for even a kitten can be monster challenge.  Finding a home for a senior cat.  That's going to take a act of God.  Broadside told me that he didn't think it was a good idea to just give up and take her in.  At one point it felt like a losing up hill battle. 
I got very quite and mediated.  That's all I could think to do.  The answer came to me.  You aren't here to fix this.  You are the energy conduit. You are to move energy.  I know energy gets energy.
So with my job to move the energy and connect Gabby with her person accepted.  I went to work. I stopped worrying and when I got to that place, I'd just tell myself that I was the conduit.  It worked!
Gabby connected with her new mom/girlfriend.  It was almost too easy.  Gabby is now in a very comfortable, loving home.  I know she'll have the best life ever.  As she is her mom's cat.  I just brought the energy together.  Amazing and powerful stuff!

Are willing to be the conduit in your life.  Moving and making those energetic connections to create the results you desire for your life?

Until next week...create to feel great!

41 projects complete! 10 to go!

This week's project...a new doughnut bed for Gabby...I wanted to make her something for her sent off.  Not that she's wanting for anything in her new home, but I wanted her to have some love for her launch.  Yay Gabby!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Time To Roll Up The Sleeves!

"Hard work spot lights the character of people.  Some turn up their sleeves. Some turn up their noses and some don't turn up at all!" ~ Sam Ewing

Or as my Granny would like to say..."Set out a plate of hard work and some folks dig in right away.  Some folks spit it out, and most folks run away from it as fast as their feet will carry them. What these folks don't know is that the plate is full all sorts of tasty good stuff."

I'm not one to shy away from the hard work of life.  I rather love it.  Hard work gets my blood pumping. My heart, mind and soul get fully engaged. I'm usually having so much fun in the moment that the hard work doesn't feel like hard work at all.  I learn about what I can do.  I meet new people or get to interact with folks in my life I haven't been in contact for a while.  I often hear that I work too hard.
I don't get it.  I think I do my fair share of sitting around and hanging out. 

"If it was easy...everyone would do it.  It's the hard that makes it great."~ Jimmy Dugan, A League Of Their Own.

Yep. I believe that.  So it is worth the effort.  Even if I fail or I'm less than successful at whatever I set out to do, it's rewarding to do the work.  It's taking on life.  It's living life. (Note to folks who like to control things...it does give you a bit or control...over yourself.)
I'm not talking about struggling or pain.  I'm talking about really digging in. Not taking the easy way out or avoiding those situations that help us grow and evolve as people.  Doing the work, builds us up. It brings joy to our life.  I can only speak for myself...it makes my entire outlook on life happy and feels complete and strong.  Besides, what else am I going to do with all this God given energy I have every day?

When I don't roll up my sleeves and get to work on whatever in my life needs to be done, I feel depressed, anxious and angry.  Not good for the rest of the world.  So, I'll continue to roll up my sleeves and to the work of life.  Which is good for me, and I like to think good for the rest of the world.

Until next week...create to feel great!
40 projects complete! 12 to go!

This week's project...My old cement wall.  I live in a house that is 100 years old.  The flat roof and cement wall were starting to age and starting to leak.  Yikes!  So, my project challenge...Stop the leaking.  Sealed with the stuff they seal swimming pools with and then coated with a UV protection.  Bring on the rain!  But not too soon.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

The Big Connection

"You are being blessed by every beneficent thought of any of your brothers anywhere."    ~A Course In Miracles
With MickeyGrrrl's passing there came an out pouring of love and support.  I knew she had effected and changed my life in the most wonderful of ways.  I had no idea she had done the same for so many others.  People who had never met her or experienced her presence were grief stricken.  I read somewhere that the grief is the pain of a loss and the mourning is the outward expression of the grief.  Who she is and her life is being celebrated everyday.  Her energy has connected and continues to connect people.  I don't have her in my life physically, but she is working her love and energy.  This connection of energy is bringing with it a flood of wonderful outcomes.  This week was a wild ride for me and all the folks she has connected to The Delicious MickeyGrrrl Fund.

Monday started with trapping a mama and baby feral cat, in order to have them spayed and neutered.

Tuesday brought the project of the week (see the end of this post).

Wednesday we released the mama and baby back into their turf.  They are doing great.  We need to trap poppa next.

The Dear Sweet Gabriella...she needs a forever home.
Thursday, we had a celebration of MickeyGrrrl's life, and also rescued a wonderful lady kitty named Gabriella, whose person could no longer care for her.  She is in a foster home, and we are looking for a permanent home for her.

Friday, we installed the project of the week.

Saturday, we installed our new trap in order to catch Poppa cat

A big week for animal rescue and taking care of cats in need of a little help.  All along the way, I was connected to and came in contact with people who were wanting to help.  The positive energy was off the chain.
I not only feel MickeyGrrrl's energy and blessings, I'm feeling the blessing of all beings in the world.  Really I do.  I know that might sound like a bunch of who-eee.  How can I be feeling blessings from every being in the world.  Well, be still, you'll feel it as well.  It's all energy.  We never question electricity working for us.  Why would we question blessings from all the beings in the world.  It's all energy.
All it takes is being still.  You'll feel it.  Everyone can use some blessings.  They are waiting for you.

Until next week...create to feel great!

39 projects complete!  13 to go!



This week's project...Winter Shelters for a colony of feral cats.  I went to the Re-cycled building materials store and purchased some old kitchen cabinets.  I lined with cozy space blankets, poly batting and straw.  All for $15.00 for two! We are putting the money being raised to good use.

This week we almost hit the $500.00 dollar mark in donations, truly grateful for all the support.  We are going to help a lot of cats and kittens with this money.  If you want to help please go to www.youcaring.com/MickeyGrrrlfund    Thank you!
 

                                                                 

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Good Night, MickeyGrrrl

This is the last photo taken of MickeyGrrrl.
 I snapped it on Monday afternoon
 
On Monday September 23, 2013, I shared the best afternoon with my dear beloved MickeyGrrrl.  She sat on my lap and purred, while looking at me.  On that afternoon, I really came to appreciate all we had shared in many years together.  I know now it was her way of saying thank you. I love you.
About 9 pm that evening she headed down to her bedroom.   As I've done on many nights before I shouted after her..."Good Night, Mickey."

The following morning, Tuesday September 24th, I found her sleeping on the futon couch in our TV room.  She didn't wake up.  Gus had been sleeping next to her and had washed her head.  His lovely face was the last one she saw as she drifted off.

When I was a kid I remember asking my Grandma about how a person dies.  Her answer has always stuck with me.  "Folks go to bed at night.  Go to sleep and wake up in heaven."  My dear girl passed in love and comfort after experiencing many years for love and comfort, she was 18.

Her lessons for me are many.  All are simple.  All concern love and strength.

Here are a few of the many lessons she has taught me.

Be still...you'll see and feel love everywhere.                        


Love is all we got.

Before there was Eat, Pray, Love...MickeyGrrrl taught...Love, Eat, Nap

When people are mean to you.  Love them.  You'll always come out ahead.

Strong people love strongly.  Love is the source of strength.

A nap is a gift of love you give to yourself and others.

There are so many many more.  I will miss you my sweet friend.  Thank you.  I love you.
Good Night, MickeyGrrrl.


Until next week...create to feel great!

38 projects complete. 14 to go.

This Kanzashi Flower wreath is to remember
MickeyGrrrl.  18 gold flowers in a heart wreath.
We started working on it the last afternoon we spent together.

Also to honor MickyGrrrl there is a You Caring Site to raise funds to help Orphan and Feral Cats.
Any donation is greatly appreciated will make a difference.. Please go to
www.youcaring.com/MickeyGrrrlFund   Thank you!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

The North Star

I was talking with a very close friend this week.  She has been part of my journey to create a lot of good things in my life.  Our conversation this week was around a creative project I've been struggling with for years.  (Struggle might too strong a word, but sometime feels like a struggle)  I've battled resistance in almost every possible form it can come in.  And I've been searching for the answer to why I'm even wanting to work on this particular creative project to begin with.  I finally hit upon my ultimate purpose for this projects creation.  It connected to a life purpose.  It almost blew my off my chair.  An amazing moment of insight.   Which I know if I don't do something with, is like hitting the snooze button on my alarm clock.

My friend suggested I put it in a star, so that only I can reach this purpose.  And that I won't allow anyone, even resistance, to take it away from me.  This is a brilliant idea.  I told her that I will hang a star in the room I'm creating this project in.  The room happens to be a room that faces north.  The north star is the star that sailors use to guide them even in the darkest of nights.  Wow!

I love the idea of putting something that is dear to us in a star.  Stars can guide us.  We make wishes on stars.  Stars are abundant.  Most folks don't try to mess with stars.

Is there something dear and special to you that you would like to put in a star?  Let it shine on you and guide you.

Until next week...create to feel great!

37 projects complete! 15 to go! wow!
                                                                        
This week's project...my star!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Waiting For The Other Shoe To Drop

This week, my dear sweet Mickey Grrrl's kidney values rose a bit.  She's lost some weight and is looking old.  She's still bright and alert, but her time is growing near.  It's a very tough time for me.  I'm finding myself grieving and going through the stages of grief.  I read some articles on anticipatory grief.  Studies show that is it more powerful than grief at the time of a loss.  Almost all the articles suggest that one of the best ways to deal with this process is get creative.  They suggest a person engage in creative activities.  That's a good suggestion for any thing we are going through.  I often hear the comment that I do so much all the time.  I do. Why?  It is how I engage in life.  I'm most present when I'm creating, which most think of as me doing stuff.  I've been told I exhaust them will all I do.  I don't feel I do all that much all the time.  I have spurts.  I do have my bouts of sitting and being.  Just being.  The mix, most times is good.  With what I'm dealing with concerning MickeyGrrrl, I will confess the level of doing is a bit more intense.  The times I'm sitting, I'm sitting with her or Gus or Sam or Broadside.  Sometimes I feel like I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop. When I get over whelmed with that feeling, I get to creating.  It helps me.  It helps those I love who are in my life, watching me going through this challenging time.  I just can't sit and wait for the other shoe to drop.  I want to create something with whatever time we have left.  I know MickeyGrrrl is happy when she knows I'm creating something.  That's fine by me.

Until next week...create to feel great!

36 projects complete!  16 to go!

This week's project is my version of my Grandma's bread.  She use to call it Gluten Bread (folks these days would run for the hills at the term).  She would bake a least three loafs of this a week every week until she could no longer make bread.  I've never had much success with bread, but this is so simple and wonderful.  Now I can make sandwiches for Broadside's lunch with bread that I know what's in it.  (flour, salt, yeast, water, and some herbs- really that's it) and less than an hour of my time.  This photo is of the French bread version.  I also made a sandwich version (Broadside ate most of it before I could get a photo).  Now I can add bread maker to my list of homestead activities.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Earn The Relationship

Two months ago, I adopted a fun loving, yet serious little boy cat named Sam.  The first couple of months in Sam's  life, we don't know about.  He was rescued and taken to a small country shelter in the back of pet store in Washington State.  He stayed there for eight months.  Over looked and growing.  The owner of the shelter provided food, place to sleep, love and toys.  What more could a little guy need?
When we brought him home, after two days, he attached himself to big old loving Gus.  No issues, just love and fun.  I have to admit I was a little jealous that he didn't attach himself to me that quickly.  I tell friends that Sam makes a person earn the relationship with him.  If that's true, how did Gus get a free pass?  Well, Gus operates from a place of love.  It makes him safe.  It makes him attractive.  Heck, I love being around Gus.  So, Sam wants anyone in his life to only approach him from a place of love.  Flat out.  He returns the love with no problem, once you pass his background check.  It's a good reminder for me.  Approach everyone and everything from a place of love.  I like the fact that I've earned my relationship with Sam and the many wonderful people I have in my life.  The things we earn, we value.  The best way to keep a relationship's value is to keep approaching it from a place of love.  Pretty simple.  Thank you Sam.

Until next week...create to feel great!

35 projects complete! 17 to go!

This week's project is red work owls!  It is for a Swap-bot quilt square swap.  I'm creating a mixture of quilt squares from swappers from around the world and I'll put them in a huge quilt.  This square is going to my partner.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Abracadabra!

Abracadabra!  Those famous words used by stage magicians, almost seem funny or trite. Really they aren't.  The origins of the word, when translated mean "I create as I speak."  I just discovered this meaning and I'm really digging it.
I've often written about our words shape what we create in our life.  What we say to our selves is critical in creating the world we want to live in.  Words shape our thoughts or thoughts and words shape what sort of life we create.

How many times do we wake up and say..."ugh. This day is gonna suck"?  Do we really believe this or are we just having a tough time waking up and we really need our coffee or whatever to get going.  Still, we've set the tone for the day.  Our days don't have to suck.  Even when they are full of yucky challenging stuff.  I like the use of abracadabra, as it is simple and snappy.  We can change things around that quickly.
So again, we all have it in us to create magic.  Simple as abracadabra!

Until next week...create to feel great!
34 projects complete! 18 to go!

This week's project...mozzarella cheese!   So easy so quick so good!
I don't think I'll use store bought again!

 

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Lemons Into Lemonade

A couple of weeks ago, my project of the week was dill pickles I was happy that I had grew the cucumber and made pickle.  Upon tasting my pickles, they were less than wonderful.  They were awful!  Mushy and the flavors were so so.  I didn't want to toss out my handy work, but I knew they'd sit on my shelf in the pantry a painful reminder of a homesteading failure.
I don't like failure.  I don't like to have the reminders of failures hanging out in my house.  It was time to engage my creativity and to stop looking at these pickles as an embarrassment.  It was time to look at them in a different way.  They became relish.  A wonderful sweet pickle relish.  That go very well with the huge batch of home made sausages that are gracing my freezer.
Mushy Pickles into Lovely Sweet Relish!
I don't think anyone enjoys failure.  It really is what we do with it that counts.  Can we turn it around to success.  I think we can. It takes looking at the situation in a different way.  What it really took for me was to move off the failure mind set and all that goes with that to the "what can I do here?" mindset.  Here's a bonus for any of you who really feel you are just not creative...by adopting the "what can I do here?" mindset, and working with the answers that come to you... you are being creative.  Wow! What a cool boost!  I suggest you give it a try.

Until next week...create to feel great

33 projects complete! 19 to go!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

How Do They Do It?

This week I had an opportunity to speak with a woman whose kitty is very close to dying from kidney failure.  It came on suddenly.  She is in shock and dis-belief that it is happening.  Talking to her and hearing the story, reminded me of MickeyGrrrl's early days in dealing with kidney stuff.  I heard the same sadness mixed with confusion and craziness in this woman's voice that I know I experienced.  I had a feel that her kitty was close to the end.  I did my best to provide comfort and advice.  It is after all kidney issues in a kitty.  And I do know that it can be crappy one day and fabulous the next.  It is the true lesson from the universe on love, staying in the moment and really listening to hear.  I keep sending this woman and her kitty good thoughts and love.

I've been exploring the entire death and dying cycle.  I how it relates to life.  How to embrace a painful, yet glorious part of life.  There is as much pain in death and bringing in new life.  There is a freedom in both.  Lessons in it all. Death for me is harder to deal with as it closes a door and leaves so much behind.  But I have learned I can't bargain with death and I can't ask it to go away.  I want to believe that when a soul leaves the physical realm, we can still sense that person or being.  Because they are free they can move around more easily and assist us here while we go about our doing whatever it is that we do.
I really don't know how the people who deal with death on a daily bases cope.  I have a new found admiration for them.  Of course it might be easier because they aren't usually attached to the being who is passing.  Yet it must effect them, because it is energy coming and going. I really don't know how they do it and stay healthy.

This posting might seem odd for a creativity/positivity blog, but I don't think so.  What I'm attempting to do is to explore all the emotions.  All the thought and believes that hold us back from having a joyous time while we are here.  I know those who have passed would want us to have that freedom and joy in our life.  A friend of mine, who has seen her share of passing animals said to me one day that birth is a window that opens.  The other time that a window opens like that is at death.  Both have such wonderful beauty for us to behold, if we allow it.  I thank MickeyGrrrl everyday for allowing me to be with her on her journey.  Right now she is floating and enjoying summer. It is a blessing.  One I wish for everyone as they reach that point in their life.  Nothing to fear.  Everything to embrace and love about the moment.

Until next week...create to feel great!
32 projects complete! 20 to go! 

I'm excited...I'm headed into what I call the high creative holidays!  I'm starting my engines for the up coming holiday crafting season!  Wheee!  Let's do it!

This week's project is an owl necklace.  Mod Podged on a domino. So fun.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Word Watch

My Granny use to say to watch what you say as it will always come back to you.  Words are expressions of our thoughts.  If we are thinking something, we can make it happen for real in our lives.  That sounds good to me.  Except, we often allow negative thoughts to run wild in our lives.
So guess what happens...negative stuff appears in our lives.  The root of it all is our choice of words.  Our choice of thoughts.  Thoughts really are things.  Our words can be our magic wand.
How do you talk to others in your life?  How do you talk to yourself?  It's every little thought and word that matters.  Change those...change your life.  It's easy.  It takes focus.  Be gentle on you.

Let's all try to totally talk and think positive for the next month.  Note what right now seems like it is falling apart in your life, with a change to thinking positive and speaking positive in everything, note after a month how you feel.  Maybe this thing in your life that is right now falling apart, but just be mended or on the mend.

That's powerful!  Ready to give it a try?  Let's go!

Until next week...create to feel great!
31 projects complete! 21 to go!

This week's project...Dill Pickles!  My Grandma's garlic dill pickles.  What else do you do when the cucumbers I planted in the Spring are now growing fast!  Make pickles.  My first attempt at pickles.  They turned out pretty great.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Shine! Shine! Shine!

This last Friday I witnessed first hand what happens when a creative artist stands at the helm of project, surrounded by positive, fun, creative people and sets out to tell a story to give as a gift to world.  We opened a production of Romeo and Juliet in a vineyard setting this last Friday night.  A very good friend directed the show.  It was his first.  I'm praying the first of many.  He had one concept to tell a story without all the ego.  Do to it with fun, creativity and love.  He succeeded in a large way.  Everyone including myself, who signed on, signed on embracing my friend's concept.

For me...I got to create and grow as a person on levels I never dreamed were possible.  To say I'm proud of my work, my friend and this production is a huge understatement.  My friend embodied what I'm trying to do with my Campaign.  What I witnessed is over 250 people in the audience also loving what was being set before them with almost a hunger. 

I now know people want to go to the positive.  They want to see others shine their bright lights and bring love out into the world.  Even if the story is sad and really doesn't have all that happy of an ending.  We want to learn from the story  and change our lives.  I think we get so inspired when we see such displays of other's true creative selves that we go ahead and try it on ourselves.  So true inspiration!  True love.  True life.  How cool is that?

After all these months of not stepping down from who I am.  To hold my lantern high and let the world see who I am and what I can and will create, I'm ready to not back down.  To proceed.

Join me, please.  Pick up your lantern and shine you light into the world.  We want to see it.

Until next week...create to feel great!

30 projects (plus) completed! 22 to go!

For this week's project I created an opening night gift for my dear wonderful friend.  It has
all the fabrics I used to make the costumes.  Each character is represented and even some of the trim.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Even I Have Limits

Well, here I am at Week 29 of Year 4 of This Campaign. 184 projects in and I'm tapped.  Not tapped out of projects and certainly not tapped out of creativity.  Just tapped out of energy.
The last four weeks, I've been assisted with my blog writing by some very special animal friends.  They felt like they didn't have a lot to say, but turns out they really did.  I asked them to help me out because I took on a huge costume job.  I've been working like crazy on costumes for a production of Romeo and Juliet.  I've costumed this show four times.  This time I wanted to do something different and really reach. 
Well, I reached so far that I almost fell off the roof.  But I didn't.  I'm just tried.  Run out of energy. Totally.

I discovered my limit.  I wanted to post a post yesterday.  But I didn't have the energy to take a photo and write something meaningful.  I did complete a project.  Not just the Romeo and Juliet costumes, although that is a huge project complete.  I completed a project that I'm going to "cheat" and share next week.

Knowing my limit is serving me.  I discovered that in order to push to the a person's limit and beyond, one needs to be in the present moment.  I'm use to pushing myself and working hard- putting out tons of energy and effort.  I've done that mindlessly for most of my life.  Then realize that all I was was tried, un-fulfilled and cranky as hell.  With staying in the moment...I pushed. Now I listened that I just can not do any more for a bit.  Time to rest.  Take care of me.  Build my reserves back up.  I'm tired, but it's a good tired.  I'll recover.
I'm glad I pushed.  I amazed myself with what was created.  I can say I gave it my true best.  And now it's time for the world to enjoy, if they want.

Until next week...create to feel great...even a little zapped tired.

29 projects are complete. 23 to go!  Sorry no photos.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Bird Brains

Helloooo!!! I'm Janet Redhen.
I live with my three sisters next door to the meal worm lady, who usually writes this blog. She's been so busy making something, that she asked me to write this blog post.  Well, of course I said.  I have a lot to say don't you know.  A lot.  I may be a simple hen, but I'm very smart and wise.  I know a lot about being happy and achieving dreams and just living life in general.

The main thing that will be your life grand is to do something that is wonderful and astonishing.  Let the world know who you are. If you do something wonderful, like lay an egg.  Let the world know about your achievement.  An egg is a wonderful thing.  I lay 1 to 2 a day.  Can you say that?  No worries, if you can't.  I'm sure you can do something just as wonderful.  Please tell us about it.  Doing astonishing things every day will make you oh so happy.  Try it.

A word about meal worms.   They are my favorite treat.  I will do anything to get a meal worm.  I dream of meal worms.  One day I wanted meal worms and a dust bath so badly, I learned to hop the fence to get in the yard of the meal worm lady.  I took my dust bath (she also has superior dust in her yard) and waited for her to come out her back door.  Sure enough she did!  I ate my fill of meal worms.  It was a dream come true.   Dreams are important to life.  Very important to life.  They make you happy.  I will never forget the day I achieved that dream.  I felt strong and important, not to mention full of meal worms and cool and clean.  So, dream.  Dream big.

Lastly, go to bed early and get up early.  Don't worry and avoid stress.  Those eggs I lay...they will get stuck inside you if you worry and are stressed.  It happened to my little sister, Sweet Sue. It can happen to you.
That's all I know for now.  It is my bed time.  Good night.

Oh, yes...until next week...create to feel great!
28 projects complete! My that's impressive!  24 to go! 

The mealworm lady has been making lovely hats.  Don't you think these are just lovely?

Sunday, July 14, 2013

MickeyGrrrl's Turn

Hello.  My friend, DeeDee, is very busy completing a costume
project.  She asked me to write her blog this week.  After all, the stinky boys I now live with have had their chance.  My post will be short, as it is summer, it is sunny and warm and I'm in the process of dying, so I don't waste time.

Yes, you heard me, I'm dying.  It's okay. We all are.  I'm just a little closer in the process than most folks.  My life is good everyday.  It has been for the last 16 years. My first 2 years were not so good. That's when I decided what I wanted my life to be fabulous and set about creating it.  It didn't matter that I lived in a shelter with 20 other cats.  That I had died twice before my first birthday and came back to life.  That there was a person in my early life who almost kicked me to death and I have lived my life with a big old lump on my beautiful tummy.(It doesn't hurt and you can't it see unless I roll on my side.)  All that didn't matter.  Why? because I was alive and as long as we are alive we can create.  We can dream and make something better.  How?  First step is to forgive.  Let the crap that is tossed at you roll off your back. It them not you.  Second step is to believe.  No matter what.  What you want your life to be is up to you.  Third, but certainly not last is to come from a place of love.  That's a tough one.  Because people always think well I'll love them if they love me.  Don't do that, please.  Love no matter what. Even if they kick you.  Love no matter what, because people who love you no matter what will come into your life.  And you life will be fabulous as you are.  My life is fabulous!  And I wish that for you.  Love is all we got.

Oh and one last thing I know...It's okay to set boundaries.  In fact you can look cute doing it.  People will love you for it and if they don't, just roll over and act like you are sleeping.  They'll get the idea.

Don't forget to nap.

Until next week...create to feel great, please.
Love MickeyGrrrl

27 projects complete 25 to go (I hope she makes it.  I might be around to see that)


Project of the week is a kitty mask for Romeo and Juliet...For the King of Cats, Tybalt.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

A Younger Perspective

HI Everyone!  My name is Samuel.
Until last week, I lived in a small shelter in Centralia, WA.
  I'm only 10 months old, Robie found me sitting in the middle of a highway with big trucks.  Someone left me there.  I was sort of sad.  Robie took care of me for 8 months.  Being in a shelter is sort of okay, but it is not home.  I knew there was something better for me...a home and family.  I really wanted a family.   Last week, my moma Dee came and got me.  I met my brother Gus and sister MickeyGrrrl (I think she might be dying, she smells sort of funny. It sort of scares me a bit.) There's this big guy with a beard, I think his name is Broadside, I don't know about guys, just yet. Gus calls him poppa. 
My moma is still so busy doing and making stuff, she asked me to write this blog.  I don't know what a blog is or writing.  Moma said to tell my story and what I learned about being in the shelter.

Sigh...okay.  So I still think people are good, even though a mean person left me on the side of the highway. Learn to forgive.  If you get nasty with people, you will always live in a small shelter.  People like nice people.  I like nice people.   Always be helpful.  Always find the time to play.  Keep your fur clean.  Jump as high as you can.  It feels good and people are very impressed with high jumpers, reaching for the bird. Never forget that no matter how long it takes see your dream come to life, dreams are life.We need them to live. Remember you are a keeper.  Everyone is a keeper to someone.  Oh, and nap.
That's all I know for now.

 Until next week...make something you'll feel better. I think that's what moma says

She made 26 things and has 26 more things left to make.
I gotta run...no really I gotta run through the house!  Freedom!
Samuel

My moma makes cheese.  Goat cheese it is really good before she puts junk in it.  I like it plan
She puts herbs in it.




Sunday, June 30, 2013

Now A Word From Gus

Hi it's Gus.  My moma is very busy this week, as she brought home my little baby brother, Sammy, and she's sewing costumes for a big show. She asked me if I would write her blog post this week.
I said I don't know what to write about.   She said to write about what I know.
Here's the two biggest things I know...
When I lived in a cat shelter for seven months, if I had copped a crappy mean attitude in the shelter, like some of other cats, I would have never scored the life I have right now.  I stayed positive.
No matter what stay positive.  Help spread that attitude to others.

The second thing I know for sure is that love with get you through any thing.   Love is so where it is at.  When folks smack at you from under the door, and hiss at you, give them love.  Just stay cool and send them love and lots of it.  You might get tired, but that's okay, you can take a nap. 
Napping will also get you through almost anything.  So I guess that's three things I know for sure.

Stay positive.
Send and give love.
Nap.

Do you guys already do all that?

Until next week....create something. (I think that's what moma says).

And I don't know how many projects she's done this year...but it's a lot she's always crafting something.

Bye for now.
Love,
Gus.

Project of the week this cool door to keep my baby brother safe.  I can see him in the dining room and he can see me.  We still aren't too sure of each other just yet.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Preparing For The Best Of Times

The MickeyGrrrl saga continues.  Yes, she is in her completion process...she's dying.  When I use the word dying, people either think, I need to be home by her side and why haven't I called the vet?  Or they think she has passed.  At any rate, I need to be much more freaked out and crying.  Not calm and coming to the peaceful shore.  I like the term Completion Process.  It really does describe where we are and where she is. It helps me be present. To focus on the gifts that she blesses me with.  She will go out in grace and beauty.  Much like she lived her life.  I get to be a part of this. 
I believe in our society, we put such a strange mix of junk all over the process of dying.  To the point where we don't allow the being going through the process and our selves to experience the joy and beauty of the moments it brings.  It is another way to create high negative drama in our lives. 
Yes, I'm sad my little and best friend, my great teacher is going to be gone soon, but only in the physical sense.  Yet I'm not going to ruin this time in the creation of high drama.  It doesn't honor all the years of love, lessons and friendship we shared and continue to share for however much longer we have.
This makes me reflect, I know the day is fast approaching for MickeyGrrrl and I to say goodbyes.  I don't know that with anyone else in my life, even my life.  So, why would I want to spend my days in the creation of drama and negativity?  I don't have to struggle.  Struggle is of my choosing.  I have choice as to how I respond to the elements in my life.  Not to enjoy and be in joy about everything that is happening.  To turn away from the beauty I'm seeing in every moment.   That would be a waste of the wonderful gift of life.
MickeyGrrrl and I have been preparing for the day of goodbyes.   We have candles, her ashes urn and a made a special blanket for her to leave the house in.  I've made prayer flags and bird items. 
Someone commented that it seemed a bit morbid to do all this.   Using my creativity to make a celebration for my wonderful girl, it is morbid.  I'm in a peaceful state, what could be a better place to create from?
I'm also making preparations for a new kitty to come into our lives.  He's a rescue kitty of 10 months old.  We think he might be an Arabian Mau  mix.  He's our boy for sure.  We chose each other. The forces in this universe brought this all together. His name is Sammy.  There will be more on this guy later.
For now...how do you celebrate life?  How embrace the gifts of life passing?
Create to feel great! 
25 projects complete 27 to go! 

So the going away blanket for MickeyGrrrl...She wanted green, cats and birds.   What ever this Grrrl wants, this girl gets.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

The Outter Limits

After 4 years of writing this blog, I know I starting repeat myself on several topics.  I like to think of it as uncovering more layers.
I've been reflecting, again on limited thinking and behaviors I have. We all have them.  I get impatient with mine and I'm working to open this up and get past them.
Why?  Well, simply stated limited thoughts...well, limit us.  
Imagine  any animal who for all of it's life only saw the vastness of the wide open spaces.  The earth and the sky and everything it has to offer them.   Then imagine that animal being scooped up and put in a small cage.  Angry, you bet they are angry.  I would be too. 
Now imagine that you are that animal and the cage is the limiting thoughts and behaviors.  Angry, I would say you might be.  At very least depressed and defeated.

I'm not talking about not having a focus or a vision for life.  That will open you up, because if you are focused you'll more than likely do whatever it takes to create your vision.
I'm talking about not seeing the vastness and the openness of life and allowing it to flow to you.

Here's my example.  I have costumed many shows in my life.  After 30 plus years and I don't know how many shows, many over 100, I've attempting to distance myself for costuming.  I'm picky.  A good friend and wonderful person in my life is directing his first professional production of Romeo and Juliet.  I'm doing the costumes.  This friend and I talked vision. Very simple...Period costumes, as much as I can do on the budget.  With that freedom, I was off and running.  Allowing my creativity to flow and all good things, the show is going to be a parade of outstanding lush rich costumes, that are well under budget.  I've costumed 3 other productions of R&J and can't remember when I have felt the freedom and the vastness of what this world has to offer in creativity, fun and joy.  All of this has spilled over into other areas of my life.

Lesson here.  Stay open.  Have an idea of how you want things to play out, and then forget it and go with the flow.  For me this is a summer "road trip" like no other.

Until next week....create to feel great!
24 projects complete! 28 to go!

This week's project is a little taste of what I'm working on.   It is Juliet's gown.  I decided to make her an under gown with hand embroidery in the bodice.  I think I'm off to a good start here.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Rock On!

This is a simple post.  This week I completed the project of creating or
recreating one of Jimi Hendrix's jackets.  At first, this project was a blessing that quickly turned into a pain in the butt, due to my fear.  Embracing where I was at...this project sailed along.  With every stitch, and there were a ton of hand stitches, I was able to look at how I allowed fear to kick me.  Will it happen again, more than likely yes...fear will get to me, but I'll recover fast, trust myself and my talents, my inner knowing sooner and without doubt.  That's a marvelous break through.

And with that lesson in my mind it is time to move forward.
Time to rock on life...fearlessly!  I wish you the same.
Until next week...create to feel great!

23 projects complete! 29 to go!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Griping Fear

The last couple of weeks I've been working around the power of fear.  I have several huge creative projects that are on deadlines.  I usually love that sort of thing.  A couple of months ago my day-job boss asked me if I would be willing to create a birthday present for his good friend's birthday in June.
He wanted a copy of the military jacket that Jimi Hendrix was famous for wearing.  It is a simple design with tons and tons of sewn on gold braid.  I agreed to the project thinking I had plenty of time.
I ordered all the materials.  Downloaded photos of the project from all angles, emailed Hendrix fans and people who knew him.  I did all this in good time.  The materials arrived and along came fear.
The more I looked at the photos the more I told myself I couldn't do this.  But I had to.  I had spent my bosses money and he was planning on this.  

I know through my years of dealing with fear that one of the best ways to just get rolling.  Push past it.  Ignore what it has to say, because it is of no value.  Just go!  This what I did.   As I did the hours of hand sewing to complete the jacket and vest, I had time to reflect.

Allowing fear to play and have it's day, really brought a new meaning to the phrase "crippled with fear."  Fear stops everything.  Fear may seem like a comfortable place to be, but it messes with everything.  It threw me out of the flow. The moment.   The price of allowing fear to have it's place in my life is way too high.  It's not comfortable.  It makes me ill and stressed.
I've put other things on hold in my life that will back up and cause more stress.  All because I allowed this thing to take hold. 
As I'm doing the finishing work on this project (I'm getting close and I will meet the deadline) i'm working to really understand that I have been given a valuable lesson here and I hope I remember and learned well so I don't have to repeat it.  Trust myself.  My inner knowing and the big one...fear is useless and doesn't serve me.  When I go into that place, the quicker I pedal out of there the better.
Forward movement is the only way.  As my Grandma would say..."Do something.  Anything.  Even if you discover later that it is wrong."


Until next week... create to feel great!

22 projects complete! 30 to go!

So this week's project...the Jimi Hendrix vest.    It's a very close copy.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

When The Teacher Appears

 I have always wanted chickens, but I just can't, for a couple of reasons.  They only lay eggs for about three years.  After that, they hang out like teenagers on summer break for up to ten years.  That's okay.  The biggest reason is it would kill me to go out in my yard and see that some other animal had gotten to the hens. I also know they get ill fairy easy. Those reasons would kill me at my heart.

My next door neighbor has chickens.  She doesn't care for eggs, so I get some from time to time.
She travels a lot and I get to take care of them.  I'm chicken aunt.  I love it.  These chickens are so entertaining and smart.  They know me and run to greet me when I'm out in my yard.

This week, the neighbor on the other side of the hens, complained.  A tall fence was built to keep the ladies out of my yard (they have NEVER gone into the complaining neighbor's yard, they can't).
I was crushed.  The hens were crushed.

Yesterday morning, the biggest and smartest of the hens, I call her Janet, was in my yard.  The day before, I had seen her pacing the fence.  She was pacing with intent.  I now know she was making her plan.  She didn't jump the mesh fence, she crawled under it.  I didn't see it, but I saw the tell tale marks of her feats.

That hen inspires me.  She teaches me things I've never thought a chicken could or would.  My lesson this time from dear Janet is this.  If there is something you want. Be it a dust bath and slugs in the neighbor's yard or whatever you want to make your life great, make a plan and follow through.
Once Janet met her goal, she never looked happier and she cooed as she kicked dust around her big red body.  She was proud.  She also left me an egg.  (Always express gratitude.)
Now that's one powerful bird.  Thing is.  We all have that power to get what we want for a good life.
If one small hen can do it...What's stopping us?
Until next week...create to feel great!

21 projects complete! 31 to go!

More Homesteading... I made butter!  So easy  and so good!
I don't think I can ever just buy butter again.   This butter is so sweet and fresh tasting.
I used heavy cream in my blender.  Got it past whipped cream, until I saw butter milk.  Rinsed it in cold tap water until it ran clear and added a bit of salt.   Butter magic!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

A Page From The Silver Linings Playbook

Whew! What a week!  Almost everyone I talked to or encountered this week, had some complaint or some big crisis that came into their lives.  My week was full of stress and challenging. 
MickeyGrrrl's health took a dip, she's still hanging in.  My part-time office job was full of time sensitive projects.  It seemed like one thing after another.
It is a positive attitude coupled with my ability to create things, however small, saved my day.  In all the junk that was going on, I found small moments of bliss and relaxation.  I reached out to folks with talk of creativity and encouraging them to discover what their art is. 

On Friday, I rented the movie, The Silver Linings Playbook.  I really liked the movie and it's message of a positive attitude.  The movie's characters were so human, so flawed.  It was a perfect choice for the week I had.  MickeyGrrrl was by my side watching.

Life happens.  Sometimes it is good happenings.  Sometimes it is less than wonderful happenings. We all stand at choice to find and seek the silver lining any all of it.

Here's to creating a truly great week.

Until next week...create to feel great!
20 projects complete!  32 to go!


This week's project was to help out my boss... a fabric screen to keep his cats out of the living room and stop them from ruining the hard wood floors.


Saturday, May 11, 2013

Still Figuring This One Out

This week I read and heard from several sources that the number one dream/life killer is negativity.
Yes.  This I know.  Yet what I'm still attempting to figure out is why then is there so much negativity?  Why do we gravitate to it like bees to honey?  What is it about negativity that makes it so attractive?  Why do would we ever want to kill our dreams and life with it?

Here's some of the conclusions/ my answers I'm still working on, but are my food for thought on this.
Negativity is easy.  If we stew in negativity, we don't have to do or want to do anything else.  No one really and honestly gets annoyed at negativity, because we find it so attractive. Misery loves company. So, if you are in a funk, folks sometimes will almost celebrate with you.  How sad, but I've seen it time and time again.
Here's what I do know, folks who are moving forward in their lives no matter at what pace, have little tolerance for negativity.  They usually pick up their pace to move away from it.  This why it is important to engage your creativity to assist you in moving away from negativity.  Because as attractive as negativity may be to all of us.  Creativity is even more attractive.  We are truly drawn to the creativity process, be it your own or someone else's.

Suggestion instead of allowing negativity to kill your dreams/life, allow creativity to help you build the boat (in whatever shape or form) to paddle away from it, and into the beautiful light of life.
Just a suggestion.

Until next week...create to feel great!

19 projects complete! 43 to go!

This week's project is an art doll for a swap-bot challenge.  We had to use a sewing pattern, a flower, a pen or pencil, and pieces of jewelry to create something.  I came up with an art doll.  Broadside said it looks like I'm watching way too much RuPaul's Drag Race.  Maybe, but my partner who received the doll loved it.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Full Embrace

I did a craft fair this week, and besides making a ton of fun money, my table was in a corner with two of the most creative women I've ever met. It was a small fair with only a handful of vendors.
It was a sunny day, buying traffic was light.  The three of us made the most sales (really the only sales).  Shopper kept stopping by and saying that the corner was alive with high energy, they had to stop by and see what was what.
I believe that folks were attracted the positive creative energy.   It was more than they could resist.
The lesson I learned from these two creative women was to fully embrace who you are and then find a way to fully express it in the world, and think of how it serves others.  Simple yes.  Easy, well no.
That is only because we get scared.  We start to think what others think of us is more important than what we think of our selves.  That mind set is not only deadly for artist, but for anyone wanting to live a full rich life.
Embrace who you are.  I have often said love is joyful acceptance.  Embrace, Accept,Express.   It really is that simple.  Try it for a week and see what happens.

Until next week...create to feel great!

18 projects complete!  44 to go

This week...I made sausages with casings.  I attempted to take photos, but they really didn't look that good, but they taste fabulous!  More homesteading...
I also got my additional raised beds built, filled and planted.  Stay tune for more adventures in Homesteading.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Don't Induce Labor

A good friend of mine is waiting to be a first time Grandma.  She was telling me that is it common for women to ask the doctor to induce labor.  Many women do this because they are done and want to have the baby on their schedule, not nature's or the baby's.  I know sometimes doctors have to induce labor for the well being of mom and baby, I get that, but to have a baby on a mom's busy schedule, because she's done.   I don't understand that mind set.  Have we gotten so impatient with our lives and schedules, our multi-tasking and wanting things our way only that we force birth before nature and baby are ready? Wow.  That boggles my mind.  Yet I see it everywhere.  As a society, we want things now or sooner.  We want things our way.  
What happened to letting nature take it's course?  I stand guilty of wanting to force things.  Wanting things to happen faster and quicker.  In those times, I find I'm on edge and nervous.  The only thing that happens faster and quicker, is I get crankier faster and quicker out of frustration.
I've talked a lot about being in the moment and allowing things to flow.  It's critical to life.  In the moment is where all the love and lessons are.  Allowing life to flow, allows all the good to come to us.  We know what to do to make our life happen in the best possible ways.

Challenge of the week...to stop forcing things to happen in life.  Allow what happens to happen when it to happens and see what happens.  Please don't induce labor in your life. (The only exception is if you are endangering yourself or other.)

Until next week...create to feel great!
17 projects complete ! 45 to go!


For this week's project I tried my hand at a mixed media collage.  The theme...love.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Week Over

This was an intense week for all of Human Kind.  I'm more and more convinced that this Campaign still is needed and has value.
My boss was in Boston, for his work with Runner's World, and was about a 1/4 mile from the finishing line.  When he returned to the office on Wednesday, his only about the events was, "There are more good guys than bad guys in the world."  He witnessed first hand all the strength and courage of people helping people.
It reminded us both of a Mr. Rogers quote

"When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping. To this day, especially in times of 'disaster,' I remember my mother's words, and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers -- so many caring people in this world." -- Mr. Rogers

 I think that says it all for this week.

Until next week...create to feel great.

16 projects complete! 46 to go!

This week's project is an apron fit for a Queen.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

I Wonder

Over the time I've been focusing and writing this blog I've come to really understand that if I put forth positive energy and intentions, guess what comes back to me?  Positive stuff.  Negative energy and intentions set out in my thoughts, words and deeds will also reap negative stuff.
So simple.  Really a duh moment.  Yet how often do we struggle and wonder why negative stuff just keeps happening?  When positive stuff happens we usually don't question why it happened, we are either too busy celebrating that it happened or figuring out a way to make the good stuff go away.
I have often heard the saying that goes, "You can't afford the price of a negative thought."  It's true.
Negativity is "expensive".  On the other hand the positive is free and easy.  So why do so many of us stay away from something that is free, easy and in large available quantities?  Could it be another old saying "if it is too good to be true, it probably is?"  I think that saying really only needs to apply to buying a used car, informerials on TV, fad diets and get rich quick emails.
And really if we begin and learn to focus on positive, life becomes a flow.  And easy.
I will say, it is
challenging to shift those negative thoughts.  They don't go away quickly.  Yet they do go away with awareness and a focus on positive. 
Here's my tip of the week for a quick shift.  Whenever I'm in a situation or thought process that is negative, I play the "I wonder" game.   I simple ask myself "I wonder... (fill in the blank)?"  I wonder how I can change my thoughts?  I wonder what I can do to move into the positive?  I wonder how I can be more positive?  I wonder why I'm feeling...angry, scared, unsure, worried (or whatever)?
Try it.  See if this doesn't help you move from whatever negative stuff your dealing with to a clear place where you can move forward and begin to create something bright and wonderful for yourself.

Until next week...create to feel great!
15 projects complete! 47 to go!

This week's project is a little case to hold cable knitting needles and the cable needle ring I made last week.  I gave to a friend for her birthday, as she knits beautiful projects and is focusing on cable right now as well.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Smart and Wise

My husband, Broadside, says that MickeyGrrrl is the most stubborn cat he knows.
I think it has served her life in a lot of ways.  I think her stubbornness has kept her alive.  She's also a very smart and wise cat.  She knows when to stand her ground.  She knows her boundaries and she knows what she wants and doesn't want.  She makes very smart and wise choices.  I don't see her as stubborn. I see her as making smart and wise choices.
For me being stubborn is about being right no matter what.  This blindness usually gets in our way for making smart and wise choices that serve our best life and best self.  Stubbornness often is a cover for fear.  We stubbornly cling to something out of fear that if we let it go, then what.
The "then what" is we just might need to make a smart and wise choice.  We may have to give up being right.  We may have to change something. It just might serve us better to be open.  Being stubborn is approaching life closed down.
I know this personally in my life.  I see it everyday around me.  It makes for unhappiness. It causes fights with others.  Depression, anger and sadness.On a physical level it causes illness and tightness in the body.
Being present for making smart and wise choices, is very liberating and frees us.  It is the ultimate feeling of having our face in  warm sun and breeze blowing softly as we float down a calm river.  I don't know about you but I love that feeling.  I love it more than stubbornly holding on to ideas, beliefs, ways of being that are not serving me and getting me toward that feeling in my life.

Are there parts of you life that you are stubbornly holding onto, just because, and they are no longer serving you?

Until next week...create to feel great!

14 projects complete! 48 to go!

This week's project is what I'm calling a cable needle ring.  I love to knit.  I love to knit cable stitches.
The stitch uses a special needle.  A needle that I want to keep handy, but I never know where to put it.  This handy little ring keeps the ring out of the way, and yet I always know where it is.  Sweet!


Saturday, March 30, 2013

Community (And I Don't Mean The TV Show)

I spent my week in the company of some of the most loving and wonderful people I have ever had the opportunity to call friends and co-creators.  It was tech week for my friend's wonderful new play, Anything But Brilliant-a love story.  I have to add here, it is a brilliant piece of work.  Part performance art, part well acted play, part essay on love, life and death and all part love and pure honest creativity. 
Last night was our first preview before people.  Some friends, some fellow members of the theater community, some of the big money donors and of course the cast and crew.   Moments before we opened the house for seating, I was struck at the magic.  My friend had spent three long years fearlessly creating this play and with his partner, raised the money to make it happen in all aspects.  I've been lucky enough to be with them on this journey.  I was struck at how all the creative elements came together and from where we started on a bare stage in a small work shop room.  The show is opening for public viewing for the month of April, and as it does this, it closes a chapter in my life.
For me that means, it is time to honor the lessons I've experiencing and to put them to work in my everyday life.

It has helped me realize that when we create, we spend time alone with our creating and creations, yet there has to come a time to step out into the market place with our creations. We all need community to enrich our lives. To connect in the physical with others.  We don't create alone, and it is important for sanity and positive movement to acknowledge the need to be apart of something bigger than our little tiny world

As this chapter comes to a close, others are already starting be plotted, taking shape and are asking to be written.  For today, I'm savoring the last scene, the last words and all the magic that it is bringing.
Perfect for a Spring day.

What step will you take to start to write a chapter that you will share with all of us?

Until next week....create to feel great!
13 project 39 to go.

So in honor of Spring...I created a lovely Lavender Lemon Shortbread.  Made even more special by using the pan Broadside gave me as a Christmas gift.   They get embossed with symbols of the British Isle.  Rose for England, Thistle for Scotland, Celtic Knot for Ireland, and Dragon for Wales.
I dipped the backs in chocolate.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

The A.N.Ts Go Marching

This week I heard a new term in reference to negative thoughts.  A.N.T.s or Automatic negative thoughts.
What a unfortunate image to place on these highly industrious insects.  Yet I love this.  What is an A.N.T.?
It is those little thoughts that pop into our minds at all times of the day.   Everything from "Well, that was stupid."  "Now why did I do that stupid thing?" to "I'm really not good enough." And everything negative in between.  Much like the insect ants, these thoughts carry away bits of our self worth,and our positive attitude. Much like ants, they are power and strong.  Any wonder why some days we are just flat out cranky?
Over my life time, I have owned several ant farms.  I love watching ants carry away pieces of food many times bigger than their bodies, they do this to feed their nest of fellow ants. I know first hand, that negative thoughts do not feed us in a healthy way.  So, what if we flip an A.N.T. to an A.P.T.? (automatic POSITIVE thought) and allow positive thoughts to feed us.  Allowing bits of positive thoughts to feed us all day along, and allow the real ants to go about their work and we don't pin negativity on these little guys.

How do A.N.T.s work in your life?  What would be your A.P.T. (Automatic Positive Thought)?

Until next week create to feel great...
12projects complete! 40 to go!

This week's project... a cool little fabric box.  We are using it in the play I've been working on
Anything But Brilliant -a love story.  

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Listen Up!

My Granny use to say, "God gave you two ears and one mouth for a reason." We are really geared to listen.  Listen to others.  Listen to ourselves.  Listen to intuition.  Listen to the needs of our bodies.  Listen.  Real listening takes being silent.  I don't know about you, but sometimes the space of silence is filled with being uncomfortable and pain.  So, I fill it up with mindless chatter.  By doing that, I miss out on most of my life. Then when stuff happens I don't know how I missed it or worse yet, how to deal with it all.

The process of MickeyGrrrl in hospice, has really forced me to take a look at this.  To be in the space of silence with her, in order for me to know what to do to ease her transition.  At first I resisted this silence, this just being.  I felt like if I talked and talked and talked what was happening would just go away and MickeyGrrrl would be fine and all would be well.  I would haven't to deal with anything.  I wouldn't have to feel anything. This plan was making me crazy and depressed.  My only choice was to be still.  To listen.  MickeyGrrrl was telling me everything I needed to know to help her and to help me.  It was calming and life affirming.  I'm by no means perfect at this silence and listening thing, but it is an area to work in.  I'm feeling and seeing the results.

Stephen Covey says "In emphatic listening, you listen with your eyes and with your heart.  You listen for feeling, for meaning.  You listen for behavior. You use your right brain as well as your left. You sense, you intuit, you feel.  Empathic listening is powerful because it gives you accurate data to work with."  
Now that's livin'!

Are you comfortable with silence?  Do you allow yourself the space to be in silence, in order to listen?
                                                                         
Until next week create to feel great!
11 projects complete 41 to go!

This week's project came totally from listening to MickeyGrrrl.  She asked my to make her a Crane Chain.
I know the story of the 1000 Cranes. She told me this isn't what this is about.  She wanted 18 cranes to represent each year of her life, strung together with jewelry, because that her. The Grrrl Queen.  Jewelry and birds what could be better to honor her?  I've never done origami, but I found this easy to do to as the Grrrl sat by my side and slept.  I can't say I worked this in total silence as MickeyGrrrl was purring or snoring through most of it.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

A Good Person Would

This week I let go of a couple of activities that have been less than rewarding.  One was a class that was becoming so steeped in negative energy, I spent more time wondering how to handle the negative energy in order to get through the class.  I finally said, "I'm done.  I'm not going back."  I then found a wonderful positive replacement.
A part of me felt odd walking away from this negative class.  Like I owed to the teacher to stick around, even after many attempts to politely discuss my concerns with her about the class.  I was essentially a paying customer, I did owe this person a thing.  Yet I kept thinking a good person would stick this out and if I leave now she might get her feelings hurt (even though I know I'll never see her again, and if I do I can just smile and move on.)
It got me thinking about what a good person would do.  What is a good person?  Who is this good person anyway.  It all boils down to not hurting myself or others.  Honestly, I don't think this person is going to be hurt by me not showing up to class.  I think if I stuck it out, there was a possibility that I could have wound up hurting myself and many this teacher. (Yes, the negativity was just that bad).
I also feel a good person takes care of themselves.  Is true to what they believe and value. I'm believing more and more that there is no place in this world for negativity.  And if a person is in such pain and has suffered so much...get help.  Life really is better walking on the sunny side of the street.

I value positive thoughts and actions, which come from a place of love...always.  As RuPaul would say, "If you can't love yourself.  How in the hell are you going to love some body else."
If there is such a thing as a good person, then I can say this...A good person would love themselves and others.

Until next week...create to feel great!
                                                                          
10 projects complete.  42 to go

It is almost time for my garden!  This year for the ease of planting radishes, beets and carrots, I made me some seed tapes.  So easy.   Take paper towel or toilet paper or napkin.  Cut into strips.
Mix up some flour and water to a paste.  With a small paint brush dot the paper strips in the planting distance for your seeds.  Drop the seeds on to the paste dot.  Allow to dry.  Seed strips.  I also
marked what the seeds were on one end of the strip.   Come planting time, set the seed strip on top of the soil and cover with dirt. Water.  Boom!  Seeds are off and growing!