Tuesday, September 29, 2009

ABC Wednesday - K is for Kilts

This week at ABC Wednesday the letter of the week is K.

As I was thinking about the letter, I realized I had the perfect choice - kilts. Each August we visit the Fergus Scottish Festival and there are always lots of kilts worn and on display. With a Scottish father, I adore all things Scottish (okay, maybe not haggis!).

Be sure to check out the other great particpants here.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

New Affirmation, ATCs, Inspiration

This week the letter N nudged me! Yes, N is for Nudge. I had other thoughts but this one would not go away.

I know personally I do not do well with demands. I do work better under pressure, but that is my choice!

Give me a nudge, let me think about it and generally I take off with it.

So, I am nudging myself to:
sleep better
love and laugh
Gentle reminders that good health is possible and desired.

I finished the last of the ATCs for the swaps which I signed up for at ATCs For All. The zentanlges are addictive I must admit. IF I happen to see another swap I just might sign up for it!

As we come to the end of September (hard to believe how quickly this year has gone by!), the next theme at Creative Every Day has been announced - Connect.
This past month the theme of Inspiration has been important. Many people and things have inspired me, not only in September, but throughout this past year. The whole journey of blogging, of taking part in challenges, book clubs, and meeting new people has been inspirational.
I have posted over 110 posts - something I never would have thought possible 6 months ago. I look forward to another 6 months of growing and challenging myself and meeting more people -especially as I take part in the Joy Diet Book Club.

Thanks everyone!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Shadow Shot Sunday

There is something about shadows. Most times a photographer tries to avoid shadows. But for Shadow Shot Sunday, shadows are what photographers seek.

I turned to myself for creating shadows - quite a different "portrait".

I tried to get a photo of a dragonfly - got more shadows than bug!

Be sure to check out the other great photographers at Hey Harriet!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Nothing - and everything!

The Joy Diet adventure has begun! The first week has been to explore NOTHING! Yes, nothing!

I love Martha Beck's concept of beginning at one's centre - to explore the very core of oneself. By letting go, by practicing vacating mind and body, one is able to reach a "place of peace, a stillness", 15 - 20 minutes every day.

Now, if only I am able to do that every day! I managed 5 minutes most days! I know I have been able to achieve that state of stillness - but that has always been in the midst of grief, pain or even anger. The place that I usually find peace the easiest is by water.

Last year's trip to Vancouver was a seeking of peace. Visiting with my cousin , who lost her mother as well in the same year as my mom (our moms were sisters) really helped. But, I really feel it was the ocean, the water, the power of it, that helped heal me. I spent many hours just watching the waves while we were there. So, I know I have my "Amanpuri, my mental place of peace". I just have to go there each day.

Be sure to visit the other Joy Diet participants, of Jamie Ridler's TNC.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Joy Diet begins

The Next Chapter has begun - with a journey through Martha Beck's The Joy Diet.

So many people have signed on for this book club hosted by Jamie Ridler.

What a wonderful way to spend the fall - focusing each week on different ways to experience joy!

This first week has us doing nothing for at least 15 minutes! Friday we will all share how this first chapter on nothing has effected us!

Wishing all a wonderful journey full of joy - hoping to meet many new and old friends along the way!

Wishcast Wednesday

Jamie asks us a very thought provoking question for Wishcast Wednesday.

This week she asks:

What luxury do you wish for?

I don't very often think in terms of luxury. My needs and wants are few really. I love books and art and have indulged myself.

But if I was really honest, I would say that I would love to have the luxury to retire now. I am past tired, and would love to start my own art for kids programme, create more and have time to volunteer.

As Jamie says " You can be a maker of magic and a tender of wishes. It’s easy. Support wishes by visiting other participants. There is great power in wishing together."

Be sure to visit the other wishcasting participants here.

Monday, September 21, 2009

ABC Wednesday - J is for Jockeys

Once again it is time for ABC Wednesday and this week the letter of the week is J.

After having H for Horse I knew that J had to be for jockeys.

Our annual trip to Saratoga Springs each August always results in lots of photos of thoroughbreds and jockeys. This past summer was no different. I was even able to get several jockeys' autographs.

Edgar Prado, just before I got his autograph. He was Barbaro's jockey - he has written a book about this great horse and his experiences.

Being escorted to the starting gate.
Now this is quite the finish!

The athleticism of these men and women is extraordinary. It may be a short ride but the potential for disaster is always there. There have been some excellent documentaries on these athletes - it is not an easy life. Yet this is the life they want and love for the most part.

Be sure to check out the other great participants here.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

New Affirmation + New challenge

This week the affirmation begins with M.

I chose Move.

I have been watching the new Dr. Oz health show and I am struck by how much I need to get going and take care of my health better. I have tried all summer - and many of my Wishcast wishes have been related to health. But for whatever reason, I have not embraced exercise!

I could make many excuses - no time, sore knees and feet, etc.

But really, it comes down to - do I want a quality life or not?

So, I plan to get out my dance tapes and have fun. I used to love dancing - just put on the music and dance for 30-45 min. several times a week. Now I will be lucky if I can manage 5-10 minutes!!

So, move I will !

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Amanda of Persistent Green just posted a new challenge! And it is one that struck a cord with me!

"September 23rd will mark the beginning of the last 100 days of 2009. Anything that jumpstarts creativity--and KEEPS it going strong--is a winner in my book. So why not leap into the next 100 days with a fresh project?
What about you? Are you contemplating any over-the-top goals? Let's hear 'em." (Amaanda)

I am jumping on the wagon!
(Sept. is inspiration month at Creative Every Day!)

My project will be related to health:

100 days to a healthier me!

100 days to bringing more joy into my life.

Jamie Ridler's Next Chapter Book Club has begun and the book we will be reading is
"The Joy Diet" by Martha Beck.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Shadow Shot Sunday

Once again it is time to share shadows tracked down this week. I despaired of getting some shadows this week , what with cloudy days and late days at school. But this morning was perfect and I found lots!

As fall starts to set in, plants are now coming to their end. Their shadows make great shots!

Be sure to check out the other shadows at Hey Harriet!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Wishcast Wednesday -STRETCH!

Wishcast Wednesday has arrrived and Jamie of Jamie Ridler Studios has once again posed an intriguing question:

How do you wish to stretch?

There are many ways I would like to stretch myself - physically, spiritually, mentally. But, the first thing that hit me when I read the question, was the desire to stretch myself in my teaching. I have 2 very challenged students and I will need every skill to truly meet their needs. I have never taught any student quite like these 2. It should be a very interesting and learning year!

Jamie asks us as well to "Support wishes by visiting other participants, leaving a comment saying “As (insert name) wishes for her/himself, so I wish for her/him also.” There is great power in wishing together. "

Monday, September 14, 2009

ABC Wednesday - I is for Inukshuk

Once again it is time for ABC Wednesday - the weekly challenge of focusing on the letter of the week.

This week the letter is I - for Inukshuk.

Everywhere you turn lately (at least in Canada!), the image of the Inukshuk can be seen. It is on my box of Royale tissue for goodness sake!


This Inuit creation is now the symbol for the Vancouver 2010 Olympics.

An inuksuk (plural - inuksuit) is a man-made stone landmark, created by the Inuit as a marker, for direction or possibly as a food storage). The name means "in the likeness of a human".

The flag for the newest territory in the north, Nunavut, has the inukshuk on it.

There are many inuksuit around the world. People even create them for their yards!

(Information and pictures from Wikipedia. Check out this gallery for more pictures and information.)

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Winners! and Affirmations


Congratulations to the 3 winners from my 100th post draw!

The lucky winners whose names I drew yesterday are ....... (tah-dah..)

I will be sending an email and requesting your address so I can send you your prize - an ATC created by me.

Thank you so much to all those people who took the time to comment and leave such kind, supportive comments. It is because of you people who make blogging so enjoyable!


This week L is the letter of the week. There can be only one way I could respond - and that is with my favourite L phrase:

Live Love Laugh

If we could all remember to experience and live these words, how much better a place it would be!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Shadow Shot Sunday!

Once again it's time to share your shadows! Shadow Shot Sunday is hosted by Harriet of Hey Harriet!.

Be sure to check out the other great shadow sleuths there!

Our gardens are winding down. As I was checking the abundance of little tomatoes in the garden today, I saw a few shadows lurking! Had to rush inside and get the camera.

A beautiful today - don't know how many more of them there will be! Autumn though, is a beautiful time of year - so full of colour and lushness.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Wishcast Wednesday

Today Jamie Ridler asks us:

What do you wish to learn?

I have always believed that you must keep learning, that you can learn something new each day!

There are many things that I would still love to learn and if not perfect, then at least to experience.

I want to learn to meditate. After reading "Eat, Pray, Love", Liz Gilbert has inspired me to learn more about meditation and yoga.

I want to study to be an art therapist. A new student I had yesterday is very disturbed and I would love to be able to reach him and quiet his soul.

I want to explore my creativity more and learn to draw better and use many different mediums well.

I guess I just want to keep learning and searching and be all I can be!

Each week Jamie poses a very thought-provoking question and asks us to respond to it.

As Jamie says: "You can be a maker of magic and a tender of wishes. Support wishes by visiting other participants, leaving a comment saying “As (insert name) wishes for her/himself, so I wish for her/him also.” It’s that simple. There is great power in wishing together."

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

ABC Wednesday - H is for Horse

This week the letter of focus for ABC Wednesday is H. Of course, I had to choose horses!
(Even includes a horseshoe!!)

My husband's family are horse lovers from way back; have been involved in racing for decades and have passed on that love to me. Before I married my husband I had never seen a live horse race. Now I have been to many.

Be sure to check out the other participants!

Monday, September 7, 2009

100th Post!!!! Giveaway, New Affirmations and ATCs

I can't believe it - this is my 100th post (from 2 blogs)! Almost 6 months have passed since I started this blog and this 100th post has snuck up on me!

The past months have been liberating for me and more creative than in as many years! I have learned much and enjoyed so much - blogs, challenges, art, classes, book clubs. So much here to explore and people to meet!

Thank you everyone who has visited here and been so supportive to my explorations. Thank you too, to the people who have given so much - through their thoughts and words and honesty!

My affirmation for last week was Improve - I created a journal page but it was written and filled with my goals, so I chose not to share it.

This week my affirmation is Juggle and as I begin teaching again tomorrow, I know juggling will be in earnest, not just for this week, but the whole year. Now that I have gotten more involved in blogging, this will be one more piece to add to the mix.

I have been working on more ATCs this past week. The challenge swaps at ATCsforAll have been fun. I have 2 more sets I am working on, then I will take a break for a while to finish my own Atc card set!

Lighthouses and Tea for Two

and Apples!

I would like to hold another Giveaway on this the occasion of my 100th post!

So - if you would like to win one of three ATC cards created by myself, then please leave a comment on this blog post, with your email address and answer this question:

Why is blogging special to you?

3 winners will be drawn at random on Sat. Sept. 12 and will be notified by email.
Best of luck!

Sunday, September 6, 2009


September's theme at Creative Every Day is Inspiration.

Leah asks us some very thoughtful questions:

What inspires you?

What lights your inner fire?

She answers these questions through a description of a number of things that inspire her. I have used some of her headings to share my own inspirations:

Nature: Nature is always inspiring - water, sky, flowers, animals, rock formations. All these speak to me in different ways, at different times.

Books: I just finished reading "The Shack" by Wm. Paul Young. I was blown away by it.
I am currently reading:
-"Eat, Pray, Love" by Elizabeth Gilbert. It is an exploration of her search for meaning, through Italy, India and Indonesia. I am enjoying it very much.
- "Julie & Julia" by Julie Powell. Just getting into the beginning but enjoying it so far.
- "The Artist's Way" by Julia Cameron. Had joined a group to explore it but am off-track!

I just bought the book "The Book of Negroes" by Lawrence Hill. This book was chosen for "One community, One Book", through our local community and there are a number of events coming up to highlight this book.

Writing/Blogs: There are so many awesome writers - check out my sidebar for some of these great blogs.
One I check out regularly for her inspirational photos and quotes is Sylvia. Her latest "Need Washing?" was such a touching, memorable story!

Today (syncronicity in practice!) I found this reference by Teesha Moore to an article by Wayne Dyer on how to let inspiration in and 12 steps to a simpler life.

Inspiration Journal: I keep an inspiration journal and it holds quotes, poetry, inspiring words from magazines, books or newspapers. I am on my 4th book.

Music, family and friends, art - these all provide inspiration. If you just look around you, there is inspiration all around. You just have to look!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Shadow Shot Sunday

It is Shadow Shot Sunday and once again it is time to share shadows. SSS is hosted by Harriet of Hey Harriet!

These are from our trip to Saratoga Springs - I was deciding which to print and realized there were several with shadows!

Thoroughbreds are such majestic animals. After watching the Woodward today and watching Rachel Alexandra win, I wished I had been there to see history being made!

Be sure to check out the other great participants and their shadows at Hey Harriet.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Another Fabulous GiveAway!

There is another fabulous giveaway - this time at "Pimp and Paint"!

Dash right over and check it out - you only have a few days!

Wishcast Wednesday

Jamie of Jamie Ridler Studios, once again poses a thought-provoking question:

What do you wish to begin?

The beginning of September marks the beginning of a new school year and it is always a new start for me. Usually I am making wishes relating to school.

My wish for this school year would be that I want to begin an art club for junior students - to encourage young artists to have fun and explore their creativity. I want to begin to enhance the arts at our school.

As Jamie says:
"You can be a maker of magic and a tender of wishes. Support wishes by visiting other participants, leaving a comment saying “As (insert name) wishes for her/himself, so I wish for her/him also.” It’s that simple. There is great power in wishing together."

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

ABC Wednesday - G

Once again it is ABC Wednesday and it is now G.
I had thought of grandkids, graffiti (and actually went hunting down some!), gardens. Butas I was looking at the photos of our recent trip to Saratoga, there was the perfect "G" - the Golden statue at Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church in Lake George, N.Y.

Every summer for the past 8 years we have gone for a long weekend to Saratoga and usually stay in Lake George. Every Sunday there we take my father-in-law to this church and we usually get a family picture in front of it.

Don't forget to check out the other participants!