Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Happy Christmas


Happy Christmas


A little rework from the archives to wish you all peace, love and a very happy Christmas. 


Image processed using Kim Klassen textures pumpkin grunge, faved and music lovin.



Wednesday, 18 December 2013

'Tis the Season


Candlight at Christingle

Making the Christingles

A little more Christmas bokeh

Christmas Bunting

Christmas sparkle

Last year we made a decision to cut back a little at Christmas. The result was we still had a lovely Christmas, we just wasted less and appreciated more.

This year we are taking the same approach.  And I although I am behind with everything, I am letting it go, trying to enjoy the moment and trusting that all will be well whether I've written the Christmas cards or not.

This year we have the added bonus of a little extra holiday time for the Moo.  Time for rest and relaxation, a little baking, meeting up with friends, time to take in the lights and let ourselves in to the season gently.

At this time of year, when we have short, grey days the sparkle and twinkle of the Christmas lights is one of my favourite things.

How about you?



Tuesday, 10 December 2013

A Little Focus


A little focus


Slowly, slowly it's beginning to look like Christmas around here.

How is it in your part of the world?


Linking up with Texture Tuesday.  Image processed using Kim Klassen textures wonderful (scripted), cherish and siena.





Friday, 6 December 2013

Friday's Letter


Own your Story



Dear Week,

Looking back, I feel like I've been quite unfocused and unproductive.  But many household things have been fixed (mostly not actually by me I will admit, but I have made a lot of cups of tea which totally contributed....) and I have been working on my Unravelling workbook and my Gifts of Imperfection course (including the making up of my Mantra - above).  I also have several bags of parcels, wrapped and ready to be delivered tomorrow which is a good chunk of my Christmas shopping sorted.

So, Week, you weren't exciting but looking back I think I have achieved more than I originally thought.   Next week, however, I am devoting to PLAY.  Decorating, baking, photography, fun with friends. I am feeling the need to make stuff.  Probably with glitter.

'Tis the season....

Love, Me


 Happy weekend. Would love to know what your favourite Christmas bake or craft is. :)




Tuesday, 3 December 2013

The first of the lights


The first of the the lights


Here they are.  The first of the lights brightening up a grey and dreary day.

And here are a couple of links you might like for the start of this season:

Susannah Conway's Unravelling workbook for 2014.  I am doing this for the third year and I really recommend it. (The emphasis is on intention rather than overly ambitious lists ;).

Alisa Burke is offering a free course called Holiday Play over December which is basically a mash up of her favourite lessons from her other online courses. The overwhelm will hit soon, but it looks like a fun thing to have a dabble in as time permits.


How about you?  What are you up to?


Linking up with Texture Tuesday.  Image processed using Kim Klassen textures add some noise 1 and pumpkin grunge.

Friday, 29 November 2013

Friday's Letter


Comfort

Gratitude for the seemingly insignificant - a seed - this plants the giant miracle
Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts


Dear Gratitude,

Thank you for making such a difference in my life.

Sometimes when I used to read gratitude posts I used to sneer and find it all a bit....much.  But since I've taken you on board and written down 5 things I'm grateful for every day, I finally realise that it's true.  Gratitude is the way to joy.

I have also come to realise that it is the small things that would otherwise have been overlooked that I am most thankful for and which, in reality, bring me the most joy.  So my list today is this:

I am grateful for the warmth of my home.
I am grateful for the cosiness of my blankets and books and tea.
I am grateful it is Friday with the anticipation of the weekend ahead of us.
I am grateful for the time and space to be able to write this post.
I am grateful for the family time we will have this evening.
I am grateful for this space in which I can share my creative meanderings.
I am grateful for this beautiful online, international community I've found.

And today, dear Gratitude, I am grateful that I found you and that you are everything that you are.

Love, Me


Linking up with Kim at Friday Finds.



Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Light Seeking


Light Seeking (1)

Light Seeking (2)

Light Seeking (3)

Light Seeking (4)


The light changes so quickly at the minute. These shots were taken over a half hour period this morning.

Image 2 processed using Kim Klassen texture pumpkin grunge.

Happy Tuesday.  Hope you are finding little pieces of light where you are today. :)


Linking up with Texture Tuesday.

{Days 25 and 26: NaPhoPoMo}


Saturday, 23 November 2013

Early Morning Quiet


Early morning

Enjoying the early morning quiet before the madness of the day begins.  

Happy weekend. :)


(Day 23: NaPhoPoMo}



Friday, 22 November 2013

Friday's Letter


Procrastination
Love this quote - one of Danielle La Porte's Truthbombs shared this week.

Dear Planner,

I really can't believe we are nearing December already.   I was just thinking about the year - wondering where it had gone mainly as I sit here contemplating Christmas shopping - and I remembered the list I wrote of things I was going to do this year.

About this time last year, I got one of those 'fill this in and you'll have an amazing year' type diaries.  It includes a list of 100 (!) things to do.  Now, maybe I was a bit ambitious in my listings (even then I could only think of 71!) - and of those 71 things I have done...drumroll please...26.  Hmmmm.

To be honest, I don't know how I thought I'd have either the time or money for some of the things on the list, but I got sucked in to the 'think big to manifest amazing things' way of thinking.   It all feels a bit disheartening now and yet I have achieved a lot this year.  Obviously not quite as much as I planned (ahem) - but still, a lot.  And my thighs are probably thanking me that I didn't get round to making cinnamon rolls or macarons so let's look on the bright side of that at least.

And now I'm left wondering about how best to set my goals for next year.  Clearly a giant, overly-ambitious list does not work for me.  I want to be intentional but I want to be flexible and realistic.  And I need to avoid the 'I've written this down which means I've pretty much done it and can now ignore it' way of thinking that I have a tendency to fall in to.

So, planner, I'm afraid you didn't really cut it for me this year.   We need a rethink.

Any ideas?

Love, Me


How about you?  Do you plan?  Please share what works for you, I'd love to know. :)



Image using Kim Klassen texture simplicity
{Day 22:  NaPhoPoMo}




Thursday, 21 November 2013

Macarons


Macarons Magic

Having a play with making and using black and white textures over at Beyond Beyond today - and dreaming of the South of France where this image was taken.

Happy Thursday. :)


{Day 21: NaPhoPoMo}



  



Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Water droplets


Water drops

The grey has given way to beautiful blue skies today.  I took this just as the sun was coming round, catching the water droplets on it's way.  One of those reminders that autumn isn't so bad after all.

How are you today?


Linking up with Kim at Texture Tuesday.  Image processed using Kim's texture anna.


{Day 19: NaPhoPoMo}




Monday, 18 November 2013

Cafe Dreams


Cafe Dreams

Today has been grey and wet.  I waited and waited for a glimpse of light that would throw a little magic my way but it never came.

So, instead, I had a little daydream of a summer's day by the river.  It's always possible to find a little magic, even if you have to delve in the archives. ;)

{Day 18: NaPhoPoMo}







Sunday, 17 November 2013

Early Morning Reading


early morning reading

Sometimes it seems the weekends are busier than the weekdays.  So I guess it's important to start on the right note. :)

Happy Sunday evening.


{Day 17: NaPhoPoMo}



Saturday, 16 November 2013

Creating


creating

If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you: I am here to live out loud.
Emile Zola

Creating, playing and generally loving the Brene Brown Gifts of Imperfection course.



{Day 16:  NaPhoPoMo}




Friday, 15 November 2013

Friday's Letter


Autumn sun

Dear Week,

You bought a very welcome change in pace.  Here are a few things that are making me happy:
  • Light.  Love the golden glow of the low lying sun at this time of year.
  • Clarity.  Slowly, slowly little shifts.  Adding a bit of focus.  Settling in to myself.
  • Crunchy sounds.  Kicking crunchy dried up leaves is my favourite and makes me smile. :)
  • Steaming mugs of tea, coffee, hot chocolate.  Yes.
  • Quiet.  Not even the radio.  Just loving it.
Thank you week.  You were amazing.

Love, Me


What's making you happy?


{Day 15: NaPhoPoMo}



Thursday, 14 November 2013

Pink Splash

Pink splash

A splash of pink for a cold November day.

Happy Thursday. Nearly the weekend. :)


{Day 14: NaPhoPoMo}



Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Explosion

explosion


Experiments with texture and light.

Image processed using Kim Klassen add some noise 4 and chalkboard.


{Day 13: NaPhoPoMo}




Tuesday, 12 November 2013

From my Kitchen


Lemon yellow


Everyday moments....bringing a little colour into my kitchen on this grey and gloomy day.

Grateful for the colours and smells, the delicious cake we'll share this evening as we gather together again.

Grateful for the quiet of today.

Grateful for these everyday moments that weave the fabric of our ordinary yet cherished life.

How about you?


Linking up with Kim and Texture Tuesday.  Image processed with now texture.
Also linking up with Michelle's gratitude week.
{Day 12:  NaPhoPoMo}







Monday, 11 November 2013

Invisible



Sometimes I can't shake that feeling.  That one when you show up, open hearted but feel invisible.  On good days I can shrug it off and know that showing up, open hearted is enough.  But some days the invisibility is heavy.  Too heavy to shake off, threatening to crush me.

Today I choose enough.


Edited to add:  I wrote this post last night.  This morning,  this post by Donald Miller is the first thing I read.  It sounded an awfully familiar story (right up until he went and spoke to the gentlemen as they go off the plane!) and definitely provided a new perspective.

Image processed using Kim Klassen texture cherish.

{Day 11: NaPhoPoMo}





Sunday, 10 November 2013

Weekend Catch Up




Rest and be thankful.  William Wordsworth.

I did and I am.

Happy Sunday evening. :)


{Days 9 and 10 NaPhoPoMo}


Friday, 8 November 2013

Dear Friday






Dear Friday,

Today you find me....

  • ...so grateful for the quiet and space of today.  The rest of the week was FULL.  In a good way.  But really full.  Time today for reflection and regrouping.
  • ....behind on NaPhoPoMo.  (Didn't take long, huh!). But all caught up today - photos were done, fell down on the posting part.  Sometimes 24 hours is just not enough.....
  • ....with the realisation that my ability to deal with stress of any kind seems to have disappeared.  Maybe it was always rubbish and my attempts to lead a calm and mindful life have just made me forget that.
  • ....and finally...more of a reminder than a find....a re-find maybe...that spending time with our children is the greatest gift we can give them (and ourselves).

So Friday, overall you find me thankful for the week.  And even more thankful for the weekend.

Love, Me


Linking my (sort of!) Friday finds with Kim.
Catching up with Days 6, 7 and 8 of NaPhoPoMo.


Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Texture Tuesday



Nothing has gone to plan, but here are a three things I'm grateful for today:


  • a warm and cosy house as the wind howls outside (not many leaves left on those trees now!)
  • extra snuggle and cuddle time with my girl
  • a little unexpected time to catch up on some reading.


How about you?


Linking up with Texture Tuesday (image processed using Kim Klassen textures cherished and to be)

(Day 5: Naphopomo)



Monday, 4 November 2013

Layers



On my kitchen counter.  Peeling and pondering in the quiet of today.


{Day 4: Naphopomo)




Sunday, 3 November 2013

Today




Well, I guess this is the way it usually goes.  In front of a very full week and the Moo has gone down with some mystery bug.  A reminder, once again, to slow down and concentrate on what's really important.  And that I can't control everything.



{Day 3: naphopomo}


Saturday, 2 November 2013

Dear Friday




Dear Creative Habit,

It was all going so well.  Right up until a couple of months ago.  And then things went awry.  Completely awry.  It seems that my creative habit is entirely dependent on everything else going smoothly.  Any change to this finely tuned balance upsets the whole cart and you, dear creative habit, is the first to go.

So, I'm taking steps to rectify this.  Pictured is my current read (Twyla Tharp The Creative Habit: Learn it and Use if for Life - here's hoping).  And I'm using two images here because I'm joining in with NaPhoPoMo (National Photo Posting Month) over at Chookooloonks - a photo a day for the month of November (and I'm catching up already, ahem...).



I'm doing this here (on my big camera) and on instagram (iphone photos only).

Let's get this thing back, creative habit.  I've missed you.

Love, Me


Linking with Kim and Friday finds (and I really do hope I have found my creative habit ;) and Chookooloonks.





Thursday, 31 October 2013

Up in the Air



Do you ever have that feeling that you've just taken a giant handful of leaves and thrown them all up in the air?  Then they swirl and whirl and scatter in ways you didn't expect and take a really, really long time to settle?   Well, that's where I'm at right now.

Here are a few links that have resonated with me over the last few days and I thought I'd share them in case they resonate with you too.

Thoughts on mindful living from Zen Habits.

Finding your identity and your writing voice by Sarah Markley

Changing your story by Shauna Niequist

Imperfection and Vulnerability - I am loving Brene Brown's course that goes with her book.




On an unrelated note, for a little bit of alternative Halloween drama check out the pumpkin flame throwing at Thug Kitchen.  (note: f bombs are kind of their thing so give this is a miss if they're not yours).


Happy Halloween (can you believe it's the end of October already?!).



Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Texture Tuesday




Half way through half term and I can't tell you how much I am loving it.  The break from routine - which seems to have become pretty rigid over the last few months - is fantastic and we are enjoying the break quietly, at home, with lots of fun and laughter.



Image processed with Kim Klassen texture to be.  Linking up with Texture Tuesday.



Friday, 25 October 2013

Dear Friday




Dear Home,

One of my favourite quotes is this, by Laurie Colwin: The thing about homebodies is that they can usually be found at home.  And that describes me pretty well.  But I have to admit, home, with all the breaks and leaks and so on I had started to fall a little out of love with you.

This week, though we've had a lovely, peaceful first week of half term.  I have moved past the initial 'that's it, we have to move' phase to the resigned quiet of getting it sorted out.  And as the nights draw in and the kitchen and living space are warm and cosy I can almost forget the work that still needs to be done.

So here I am, a homebody back to loving you, home.

Thanks for bearing with me.

Love, Me





Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Circles



There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.
Nelson Mandela

I've been thinking lately....assessing really......as I noticed that I was picking up my (big) camera less and less.  And finally I came to the realisation that I have been ignoring the whole purpose and reason for my love of photography.  All the extraordinary ordinary.  The moments of my everyday.  I have captured the light on my bed a thousand times.  And yet this image is different to the 999 times that have gone before.  That's what I love about photography and the whole photography process.  Once again I have come full circle back to that realisation of purpose.

And so I return to my best loved places, literally and figuratively.  I seem to circle this issue a lot.  But I always come back to the same place.  Here I am again.


Linking up (belatedly) with Texture Tuesday.  Image processed using Kim Klassen texture yesteryear.




Friday, 18 October 2013

Dear Friday



Dear Life,

Always, always a work in progress.  I have a tendency to forget that.  Especially when the messy outweighs the beauty.

And so, things have come full circle. The messages have been filtering down through many channels and culminated just now as I opened up Liz Lamoreux's newsletter which contained an invitation to take a moment to notice the messy in one hand and the beauty in the other.

It's always a balance. Often I don't get it right.  But I have the tools.  The tools to slow down, take notice, ask for support and help.  To get back to the beauty and the joy.

Here's to yes, Life.

Love, Me.


Happy weekend. :)


Thursday, 17 October 2013

Seasonal Simplicity



Season of mist and mellow fruitfulness......
J Keats

I learnt that poem when I was about 10 and can still recite a good chunk of it off the top of my head.  Which I find quite curious seeing as I can't remember what I had for lunch yesterday.

Childhood memories and loves are funny things.  I'm always amazed how they stay with you over the years.  Looking through my bookshelves I noticed a pattern amongst my most favourite books.  They are all connected with the seasons.  They are:

Book of the Year by Enid Blyton.  My first and still my most favourite.  I can still feel that thrill when I come across something that has been previously overlooked (or forgotten all these years on...).

The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady by Edith Holden.  Lovely watercolours.  When I was at school we used to do a weekly nature walk and watercolour whatever treasures we found along the way.  Rosehips and elderberries were always my favourite.

Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach.  A daily reminder to live abundantly which is something I really need right now.

Springwatch/Autumnwatch by Bill Oddie, Kate Humble and Simon King.  The autumn part has always been my favourite.

The River Cottage Year by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.  A reminder to shop and cook seasonally.  The seasons are much more fun if you go with them rather than fight against them.  I have to remind myself of this a lot at this time of year.  Food and cooking as is a good place to start.

The Kitchen Diaries by Nigel Slater.  Same reasoning as above plus I love his notes (Today an emergency cake is called for.  On this occasion it has to be home-made -  love the use of emergency and cake in the same sentence!) and that his (beautiful) photos are done in real time, in his kitchen.

And a recent addition to my collection, A Year of Mornings by Maria Alexandra Vettese and Stephanie Congdon Barnes.  Lovely, lovely photography.

There are probably more, but these are my favourites.  It seems my subconscious is (and has always been) aware of my what body needs even though my mind is trying to over-ride the whole system.

Back to seasonal simplicity for me.

How about you?  What are your favourite seasonal books?


Image produced for Beyond Beyond using Kim Klassen LR preset autumn collection.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Light



But hope is no less realistic than despair.  It is still our choice whether to live in light or lie down in darkness
Rick Yancy


Image created using Kim Klassen textures reverie and warmly.  Linking up with Kim at Texture Tuesday.



Thank you for your sweet comments on yesterday's post.  They really mean a lot. x








Monday, 14 October 2013

Lately....



I can't really seem to get it together.  Small tasks seem insurmountable and my house seems to be leaking and breaking down around my ears.  I feel like  I'm out of sync, tired of the relentlessness of everyday routine but with no energy to rise above it and change things up a bit.  Suddenly the things that started off as things I was happy to get involved with have turned into oppressive obligations.

So here I am today.  Moving through the treacle as best I can from one moment to the next, celebrating the tiniest of wins.  Anything else seems exhausting.

I hate leaving this on a negative, but sometimes this is the reality.

Wishing you well this week.  Be kind to yourselves.

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Texture Tuesday



Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes.  Don't resist them; that only creates sorrow.  Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.  Lao Tzu


Linking up - a little late - with Texture Tuesday.  Image processed using Kim Klassen texture peony.








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