Wednesday, 29 June 2011

The blue hour

This week's theme is 'twilight, the blue hour'. I can honestly say that I have never searched for twilight through the lens of my camera before. I've discovered that it truly has a unique light of its very own, with its own secrets to whisper. I hope I have managed to capture something of the stunning honeysuckle silhouette that gave me such pleasure last twilight.

"I often think that the night is more alive and more richly coloured than the day." 

 ~Vincent Van Gogh

Saturday, 25 June 2011


Physically speaking, this week has been pretty much of a non event so far, as I have been ill for most of it. However I do have a poem to share with you,  inspired by Jen Lee's  Finding Your Voice e- course, which has been life changing for me in that I am writing again. My weekly blog posts have become second nature to me now but fiction writing and poetry have seemed out of my reach for so very long. Thanks to the riches of Finding Your Voice I have tapped into a part of me that needs to write again. I wrote my first short piece of fiction last weekend, the first time I have done so since the age of seventeen. I am still contemplating whether I am brave enough to share it here, but in the mean time I hope that this poem reaches out to you:

Story Manifesto
Stories are knowledge.
Pick them like glowing flowers,
Arrange them in your favourite vase,
Look at them often.

True words can be difficult to find,
Painful to release.
Do so with deep routed compassion.
Put them out there with faith.

Stories are gifts.
Wrap them delicately with shiny ribbon,
Or passionately with richly printed paper.
Send them intentionally, with a part of yourself.

True words have consequences.
Sit with them a while, offer tea,
And don't be afraid.
They will whisper when they are ready.

Stories are treasures.
Wear them head held high,
In a rainbow necklace.
Next to your soul.

Milena Widdowson

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

One word (to describe me)

This week's theme is 'one word- to describe yourself'. I know my interpretation has two words, I hope you forgive me, for these words  seem a part of me this week.

High expectations create a two edged sword for me. Whilst the pressure I place on myself constantly is damaging, I also reach for the stars, and this is something that I really need to hold on to.

"For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream. "

Friday, 17 June 2011


Do you know what I mean by having a muddled kind of day? The kind that begins without the slightest spark of energy but with many an item on the never ending to do list? The kind where no matter how hard you try, you just can’t find even one clear headed moment, when everything is slightly fuzzy and distant? Well that was me today. In a major way.  I think I am just extremely tired at the moment ( all suggestions on how to help me actually get a good night’s sleep are greatly received) but I’ve have managed to somehow run on a near enough empty fuel tank until this morning. I felt like hiding under my duvet, like a tortoise in her shell, waiting for it to be friendlier out there. 

However, after realising that the coffee was not going to make itself and magically appear in a steaming mug by my bedside, I did get up. And you know what, I find so often that the initial small step of doing something, anything, however mundane, is often enough to break that need to hide. 
I got up, banished my usual higher than high expectations and surprise, I got so much done. It didn’t matter that the tasks were so ordinary, it just felt good to be moving, to be completing something. 
I decided to take photos along the way, knowing that I didn’t have any developed ideas for this week’s post, thinking that maybe something would jump out at me as I snapped away. By the time I uploaded my shots I realised that today is an ordinary day, not one of those sparkly, inspired days, but a grounded day. 
Life is in the detail. And that is worth acknowledging too. A gem of clarity out of the midst of muddledness. I leave you with this wonderful quote, which seems to say it all today:
“If you surrender to the wind, you can ride it.”
 ~Toni Morrison

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

What's outside the window?

This week's theme is 'What's outside the window?'. My response rather surprised me as I wanted a really pretty framed scene yet settled upon this slightly moody, simple shot of what I see if I look up out of my living room window. But you see, this photo speaks volumes about my week so far. 

I need to look up. Stop  getting absolutely buried in the detail. 
(Oh my, I have been swamped.) 
I need clarity. Simple lines.  
I need air. Space.
I need that cheeky glimpse of sunshine peeking through the clouds. 

I found this beautiful quote, which also felt quite apt, as it makes me want to look up often:

The sky is that beautiful old parchment 
in which the sun and the moon 
keep their diary. 
 ~Alfred Kreymborg

Friday, 10 June 2011

Howl often

That’s it, I have finished reading Women Who Run With Wolves. It is a strange feeling as I’ve never read a book quite  like this before. I learned many truths, have digested a rainbow of stories, looked at myself with thorough honesty, and added a huge splash of wisdom  to my life. I am also more than ever hooked on storytelling.
Today I would like to share with you a few snippets, which I have put into my healing bag, ready to take out whenever I need to. In the final teaching chapter Estes shares powerful, rousing plea to embrace all that we are. It was one of those moments when it was like she knew me personally, it made my heart thump. I don’t want to spoil the pleasure of you discovering that plea for yourselves but I shall share the phrase that glows with many lights for me:
“So come out, come out wherever you are. Leave deep footprints because you can.”
The deep footprints encapsulate what is in my heart, to make a real and connected impact on this earth, for my own wild self and for the world I have the honor to live in. I am reminded so often how short and precious life is,  footprints are vital. Mine and yours. Some days it feels like those prints have been blown away by the wind. Some days it is hard to walk, to make those prints in the first place. But they do matter. Each and every one of them.
Estes also writes a list of wolf rules for life . My favourite rule has to be:
“Howl often.”
Howl. Communicate. Connect. Celebrate my voice. Know that I am alive. Let myself be heard. Release that negativity, get rid of it, put it out there and move on.
The last story in the book is one of a woman reclaiming her true self with the aid of a wise wolf, who helps the woman see  the truths in her life clearly for the first time, both the good and the bad. The wolf leaves her with the precious question, the vital question to take away and use in her life:
"Where is the soul?"
For me it is all to easy to get caught up in the everyday, to be automatic in my actions as a part of my daily routines, to relay on the routines, the comfort zones. But really to live  with purpose I have to open your eyes wide and search for that soul; the life force, the humanity. This is a crazy life, just maybe asking myself the soul question might make me appreciate it more.
The stories told so powerfully by Estes  have made my creative senses tingle, although I am not yet sure where this will lead. What I did know this morning was that I had to create a piece of artwork to celebrate this wolf journey

Of course now I feel a little lost, as I always do when I have finished a book, which has become a part of me. I really like the idea of further exploring storytelling but do not know quite where to start. Do you have any suggestions?

Wednesday, 8 June 2011


This week's theme is simply but beautifully 'heart'. I have a bit of a thing for hearts and so there are many to see in my home. I chose this Emma Bridgewater milk jug as I am inspired by her gorgeously unique, vintage patterns. 

 Whilst quotation searching (I love to collect wise words) I found this one:

"Faith is a passionate intuition."

Following my heart, that gut feeling beating deep inside, is what I aspire to. 

Saturday, 4 June 2011


I do believe I am falling in love with yoga. It is connecting me with my physical self in a way that I did not think possible. I am getting to know my body. I am listening and nurturing and most importantly doing so with a sense of peaceful focus that I have not experienced before. Seriously, I can feel my perspective shifting a little each day and I am in awe of this process. I have had a negative body image as long as I can remember and in turn have tried numerous ways to come to terms with this deep, ingrained attitude but somehow I haven’t been able to sit with the strong rooted critic, who makes me look at myself in the mirror; in disgust at the worst of times and in helplessness the rest of the time. There seems to be such a wide distance between the inner me and what I look like on the outside.This time it feels different though, I have hope. Of course there is so much to learn and as always I am daunted, expecting myself to know everything straight away, to be able to do everything within one practice. However, I am equally, if not more so, excited to be at the beginning of this journey. For me to say that I am embracing being a beginner is a large leap!

This month I have signed up for 30 Days of Yoga for Busy People, taught by Marianne Elliott. I deliberated a great deal before clicking that purchase button, as committing myself to daily practice is another huge step from dabbling every now and again. Sometimes I commit to so much that even though it is all creative and spiritual goodness, I end up putting silly amounts of pressure on myself to stay on task, to complete all perfectly. But I paused, I shut my eyes and my gut feeling, that intuition I am cultivating,  told me this was the right thing to do. Not only is Marianne a really thorough, clear and motivating teacher, with an extremely well thought out course, but she seems to know exactly what I need- magic indeed. The opportunity  to learn how to ground myself, to find the time to be properly still, to acknowledge my body  and to let  thoughts come and go without holding on, is in itself  literally life changing for me. Three days of such time and I do feel myself recharging, tapping into my deeper energy sources. And because there isn’t a large time demand on the yoga practice each day I can actually fit it in without feeling stressed,  allowing it to fit in with the rhythms of my days.
This morning I woke up early and practised the routines for this week outside in my garden sactuary ( I can’t just say garden without the word sanctuary anymore as it feels like such a special, personal  space). Afterwards my eyes were open wide. So I leave you with with much appreciation for today.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011


This week's prompt is 'memory'. I thought I would open my box of old photographs and simply pick one for inspiration. Without warning  a poem needed to be written. I often wish I could travel back in time and befriend the younger me; to give her the love, hope and wisdom she needed so desperately. Therefore I have interpreted the theme quite freely but these thoughts are very much a part of me.

Time Traveller

Build fierce memories.
Keep them as maps tucked inside.
Reach, let them guide you.

Life is light and dark.
Attack the dense, inked shadows,
See the rainbows shine.

Give voice to your fears.
Swirl and twirl in their puddles.
Shed your tears freely.

Know you are enough.
Kindle that pulsing fire,
Brave and strong and true.

My sweet darling girl,
Your story is worth telling.
I will hold your hand.