Friday, November 27, 2009

Rest and relaxation

I'm off to Margaret River for a couple of days for some much needed R&R, so may not be blogging for those two days - having too much fun! :)

Here's a little quote to give you something to think about:

"In the middle passage we are invited to find our passion. It is an imperative to find that which draws us so deeply into our life and our own nature that it hurts, for that experience transforms us."
J Hollis, 'The Midlife Passage: From Misery to Meaning at Midlife'.

What's your passion?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Just had to post pics of our artistic endeavours of today! We saw how to make these little critters on a kids' programme and decided to have a go ourselves. They are really easy if you want to have a go yourself - we're planning to make smaller ones, paint them gold, use massive amounts of glitter then hang them up for Christmas.

What you need:
Air dying clay, cotton buds (Q-tips), piece of wool or string, paints, glitter, anything else fun to embellish with.

How to make your monster:
1. Make a loop in the end of your piece of wool, push it into the middle of your lump of clay (not too big as you want to be able to hang it up and the clay is quite heavy). Really squidge the wool in the middle and roll clay into a ball with the length of wool sticking out.

2. Cut off one end of each cotton bud and push into the clay. I made a tripod of legs so the monster could stand up whilst I painted it, whilst the other monster has more of a wild hairdo - let your imagination guide you!

3. Make 2 (or more!) eyes from clay and stick them on. Be prepared to stick them on with glue after drying as we had to!

4. Let monster dry, approx 24 hours.

5. Paint and glitter in true monster style.

I know this project was on a kids' programme, but it was so much fun!! Don't know who had the most fun come to think of it ...

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

This one's for you dad ...

Here I am back in the swing of things with my blogging. I had a break because I simply didn't feel like blogging - I'd got myself into a dreary place and needed to take the journey alone. I know I've always said here that I would be honest about my travels with depression, but sometimes there are places only I can go! So I have been writing in my more traditional paper journal and exploring my emotions and feelings. As my guide I've been reading Navigating Midlife: Women Becoming Themselves - by Robyn Vickers-Willis - it's a brilliant read especially if you're approaching the 'middle stages' of your life and feel like you need some direction. It also basically explains that the so-called 'midlife crisis' is totally normal and that both men and women go through it anytime from the age of 35 onwards. I've completed the book and the accompanying exercises and feel like I understand myself a little more and am going to treat myself kindly!

Anyway, I have been very creative today, as the photo above shows. Robyn recommends finding new hobbies or interests to nurture your inner spirit - and I decided to use my bead weaving loom to make a beautiful bracelet for a friend (which is why I've only shown the start and not the finished product in case she reads this!) I actually had the loom hidden in a cupboard since last Christmas and haven't used it until today - this book inspired me to have a go at bead weaving - it's great fun.

My other creativity was more like creating havoc - in the kitchen. I was commissioned to make cup cakes for afternoon tea, which I duly did; it was a beautiful mix. Unfortunately, I went off to play on the Wii Fit whilst they were cooking, got a bit carried away and overcooked the cakes because I forgot about them. Ooops :) But the good thing to come out of all of this is that my Wii Fit age is now only 26 years as opposed to 52 years old about 4 weeks ago :) It took a long time to get over that disappointment I can tell you.

So there you go - I am back after my hiatus, just like Robbie Williams. Sounds more like a medical condition doesn't it? Well, I made a promise to myself that I would have written 250 posts by the end of 2009, so I have to keep going to reach my target. Plus, my dad has asked me to keep writing, so this one's for you dad - told you I'd write tonight!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Going back to my roots

I had fun tonight punching out butterflies and hearts from coloured card, cutting out butterflies from pretty wrapping paper and sticking them into my mandala. Usually my mandalas are more 'organic', i.e. no symmetry, so this time I decided to use punches, printed papers and a stencil to make the inside of my mandala more regular in shape and design. Of course I had to depart from this because I don't like them to be too perfect, hence the lines moving away from the mandala and the butterflies who have have broken free.

As I was making the mandala I was thinking about my 'roots', where I belong, where I have come from and where I am going. Essentially, what makes me, 'me'. Came to the conclusion it's love and transformation, learning to embrace change (which I'm not always that good at, but it happens anyway!). I finished with a feeling of moving forward with love in my heart. Fabulous - what more could I ask for! And this is why I love creating so much - it's like a map of your journey through life.

PS The inspiration from this came from watching 'Who Do You Think You Are', which at the moment features Australians trying to discover their ancestry. Last night it was John Butler going on the journey and he found some of his ancestors came from Australia and Bulgaria! He's a very talented musician and played music throughout the program on a guitar that belonged to his grandfather, it added to the mystique of the journey. He was very moved to discover he had relations in Europe and that ancestors on both sides were idealists and stood up for what they believed in - much like he does in the present day. I guess as our family moves around quite a lot, I like to feel I have a sense of having my roots somewhere. Maybe some of my ancestors were also travellers or artists. One day I'll find out! ...