Super easy art that makes a statement

I am always looking for crafts to try.  Often it ends up in the trash which is okay as I enjoy the process of creating.  It is a time to sit still, think, create and be in the moment.   I can across this easy way to make art – it is not original – and thought I’d share.

All you need is black paint or a Sharpie and artist canvas.  I got my 7 x 9 inch canvas at the dollar store.   I used a piece of paper to try the design first for an idea of placement on the canvas.  The first picture is mine – Chinese symbol for dream.

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It is easy and I think it looks sharp just the black and white.  Plus it is a conversation piece if people want to know what it represents.   You can find tons of Chinese symbols on the web.  Here are a few I found that would be interesting to do.  Enjoy!

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Journaling and tapping into content

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Journaling is something I have done for years off and on.  I usually do a travel journal and I record events and thoughts I want to capture, but I do not do daily entries.  Though this journey of exploring I have been coming across ideas that I want to share.  The latest is mining for personal content.  I thought this is great for people just starting to journal and for others who are struggling with content for their writing.

Instead of writing about what you did today, try exploring questions like if there was a lesson for today – what was it?  Was there a theme running through your day?  Or week?  What five words best represent how you felt today?  Maybe write about what was the happiest, saddest or most thought provoking thing that happened to you today/week/month.

It can be difficult tapping into our feelings, but it can also be a great jumping off point for further growth and creativity.  Maybe that lesson or theme that has been running through your week will lead you to check out a new activity or touch base with an old friend.  So why not mine for our personal content and see where it leads us.  Maybe there is a piece of art or a short story in there waiting to be brought to the surface!

Happy 1st Year Anniversary to me!

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Last October I wrote my first post.  I can hardly believe a year has come and gone.  What started as an accident has turned into something I enjoy and gotten me involved in a super supportive creative community.

Fast recap, I didn’t intend to start a blog it just happened when I thought I was signing up to guest post on http://www.awandafulthing.com.    You can always start now was just the last phrase (after many) I typed into the account.  Now I don’t think I could have every thought up a name so appropriate as to what I want to explore and share with people.  So I guess it was meant to be.

I look at the world a bit differently – looking for ideas to share and projects to try.  At the moment I am reading a book on crafts and jotting down ideas.  I actively listen to conversations, pod-casts and read other blogs for ideas or to challenge me to push myself further.    Continue reading

100 Years from now you could be someone inspiration

Lately I’ve been trying to get my creative juices following so crafting, reading and internet searching.   I came across an idea that appealed to me both as a blogger and a writer.  What if we came across a letter from our great grandmother, grandfather or anyone.   Wouldn’t you be interested in what their typical day was  like?  What they were currently reading?  Music that got them moving or movies/shows they saw or where anticipating.  Also the events and news around them at the time and their opinions on these topics.

I would enjoy curling up with an old letter and being taken back to a different time.  I know I’d search for any music or books mentioned to see if still available.  Would the letter make me appreciate what I have now or would it make me sad at what I missed?

The best part is that we can be that ancestor for someone!  We can put pen to paper and write about what is happening in our lives today.  It doesn’t have to be earth shattering, it just has to be real and heart felt.  So, think about what you want to share and what is important to you now.  Wouldn’t it be cool to think of someone opening your envelope in even 50 years and learning a bit more about you and the world at the time?  We have the chance to be someone inspiration – think about it.

Paint, Thread and Tape

I am usually more motivated and organized once September hits but for some reason this year I wasn’t and September rolled on through.  Weather wise it was beautiful on the east coast so no complaints in that area.

October started (WHAT!) and I made my “to do” list.  I was determined to get started on projects and set a deadline of the end of October to have a few things crossed off the list.  I like to make an easy Christmas craft to give to friends visiting during the holidays and already knew what I wanted to do this year.  I also knew I had to get cracking on it.   So, the week of October 5th, I commandeered the dining room table. Covering it with plastic, I brought out paint, thread, tape and other miscellaneous items.  I gave myself the rest of the week and Saturday to make a dent in things before cleaning off the table – at least for a bit.  The following sites are my inspirations of projects that I completed and/or started last week.  I have more to do and now feel motivated and ready to tackle the rest!

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I thought these were cute and I have boxes of thread/floss.  My mother was an avid crafter.  So wanted to try one.

http://honestlywtf.com/diy/diy-friendship-bracelet/

I saw these wooden spoons and serving utensils last year on my friend’s A Wandafulthing blog and knew it would be my 2015 Christmas project.

http://awandafulthing.com/2014/12/22/diy-painted-wooden-spoons/#more-927

I am not a painter by any means, but I do enjoy trying new things.   When I sit and do a craft it is a bit like meditation for me.  I get into a zone and whether I use paint, thread, glue it is the process of creating I enjoy.  Saw this on Wonder Forest and thought why not!  So it went on the list.

http://www.thewonderforest.com/2015/07/paint-with-me-watercolour-lake-scene.html

Hope this gets you motivated to start your fall or holiday crafting.  If you have any neat ideas please share.

Gurus and mentors – what can they do for us?

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I recently listened to a podcast on Gurus (you can substitute mentors here) on how we can learn from them.  We often seek them out or they appear when we need them.  I also think we have mentors all around us.  People who are courageously pushing their boundaries, exploring new worlds and creating the life they want.  I don’t think it has to be anything huge like starting a non-profit in a developing country.  I think creating the life you want can be exploring your creativity, volunteering in an area you are passionate about and being authentic.

A guru could be someone you admire.  They don’t have to be in a field you want to entry, they just have to be passionate about what they are doing.  Explore how they got there, what choices they made or didn’t make and areas they pursued.  I imagine you would find people who are open to all possibilities.  Individuals who don’t looks at failures and mistakes as negative but as opportunities.  They would be forward thinking (most of the time!).  Continue reading

Embracing Fall – start your Fall bucket list!

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When September rolls around I feel re-energized.  After a hot and humid (especially this year) summer the weather starts to cool, walking is at its best and everything is ramping back up.  All the Fall brochures arrive and I pour over classes ranging from yoga, dance, painting to seminars.   I head to the library to collect their brochure, City Recreation, Community College and anything else that catches my eye.  With school starting, I guess I have always felt September was more the start of a new year than January.

I start to make my list of things to do for the fall and that usually includes more cooking and nesting.  Activities like book club start back up, the season opens for the theater and I find myself looking at crafts to do, books to read and projects to finish.  I find my energy level is a bit higher – maybe due to the cooler weather and I want to have more things on the go.  Continue reading

Forgive once and lighten the load

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When I read this it stuck with me.   I knew, eventually, I wanted to do a post on it.  It is something I struggle with (am I the only one?) so hope this starts a conversation.  Here is goes:

“you only have to forgive once.  To resent, you have to do it all day, every day.  You have to keep remembering all the bad things.”

I think this is a work in progress for a lot of us.  We get caught up in past hurts and never really let them go.  Yes, we say we have forgiven or forgot, but have we really?  We let things trigger us into remembering being judged, embarrassed or forgotten.  Then when triggered that past resentment, angry or depression can overwhelmed us again.  Resentment is sneaky that way hiding just below the surface.

So let’s start a conversation – even within our heads – of what we want to let go. What we don’t want to carry into the next chapter of our lives.  I know it is hard and I’ve carried a ton of resentment over the years and I’m a work in progress all the time.  I only have so much energy and I want to focus it in so many other places.   So let’s work at forgiving past hurts, or maybe just acknowledging them and letting them go. No longer carrying them around with us every day (they are so not worth it).  Learning our triggers and silencing them.

If you have any suggestions on letting go, please share with everyone.

Read the above quote in M.L. Stedman book The Light Between Oceans.

Inspiration Board – memories to keep

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I thought I’d share my idea of a mood/inspiration board or for me it is capturing life events mine or friends.  My board has accumulated layers of pictures, brochures, quotes and more over the years.  I pick up postcards when travelling or at art shows, a few are ones friends’ sent and cards I receive.  Anything I think is pretty and/or resonates with me I put on my board.  I realized looking at it that some items are at least 15 years old and peeping underneath I see business cards and event cards from years gone by.  Also see that I have more color on my board than I have anywhere else in the home…..hmm….

So if you haven’t started or don’t want to do the work of a scrapbook just pick up a cork board and start picking up items that speak to you, events you want to remember, cards you want to keep and start pinning them on.  Think of it as your “touch” Pinterest board and enjoy the memories.

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Decision making and knowing your personality type

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For awhile now I have been listening to Personality Hacker.   Recently podcast #68 talked about developed and underdeveloped decision making using the Myers Brigg’s system.  Myers-Briggs has 4 decision making types – Extroverted Feeling, Introverted Thinking, Introverted Feeling and Extroverted Thinking.  For decision making the podcast dealt with “should” statements.  How SHOULD the world work.

http://www.personalityhacker.com/podcast-episode-0068

The podcast was 48 minutes and worth listening to, I am just going to touch on a few things I thought we should be questioning.  The presenters say growth often feels difficult and uncomfortable (isn’t that the truth!) and we have to become comfortable and aware of how we feel (all feelings/emotions) and work through them for growth to occur.

So are we attached to how people see us and avoid conflict?  Consequently, we are actually not doing the kind thing of dealing/resolving the conflict in order to experience true harmony.

Are we are attached to being right and not doing the hard work of allowing our answers to be questioned and maybe finding out the truth.

Are we attached to an emotion, like righteous indignation, which we feel justifies not listening to other views and not doing the hard work of questioning ourselves.

Or attached to getting our goals met regardless of what is happening around us (people, environment).  We should start looking at how our goals are impacting the larger environment.

The Podcast ends with asking us to question how our decision making is showing up for us and to start exercising being at a better level.  Check Personality Hacker out the Podcast are weekly.