30 November 2013

Taking Stock - November

Originally, I thought I'd do this wonderful exercise from Pip Lincolne on the first of each month. Then, I realized it would make more sense on the last day - to take stock of the month just passing...
So here's goes - and fingers crossed the internet connection holds long enough...

Making time to ponder the past few weeks, and prepare myself for Advent...

Cooking as there's little I can do in the kitchen nowadays, I make sure I'm an enthusiast recipient of whatever others cook :)

Drinking water with a slice of lemon - it's how I get my 8 glasses a day!

Reading Christina Rosalie's A Field Guide to NOW - it'll be my Advent book this year.

Wanting peace and solitude - especially after such a full-on couple of weeks!

Looking out for gifts - I've hardly got anything and xmas is less than 4 weeks away, eeeekkk!!

Playing two favourite wintery CDs - Thea Gilmore's Strange Communion and Sting's If on a Winter's Night

Wasting energy fretting about all I haven't done about Christmas...

Sewing (since I cannot physically do this any more, think I'll change it to Sowing...) seeds of plans for 2014 - the year I turn 50 and we celebrate our Silver Wedding anniversary!

Wishing as always, for peace and justice in our world

Enjoying all the great dramas on TV (not to mention Strictly!)

Waiting for a burst of energy to tackle my To Do list!

Liking the peace and quiet as I'm the only one up

Wondering how long it will last

Loving the bright sun streaming through the window
Hoping it stays all day :)

Marvelling at how the internet connection is lasting...

Needing it to hold out a few minutes longer...

Smelling like I need a shower :(

Wearing my pj's and dressing gown (well, it is the weekend!)

Following the moving shadows across the wall...

Noticing the clock ticking... the only sound in the house right now...

Knowing soon there will be noisy activity upstairs as Sam has to go to work, and Nick needs to do grocery shopping - our cupboards are bare...

Thinking this a really wonderful exercise :)

Feeling so grateful for the wonderful beings I've met on the blogging course :)

Bookmarking all their blogs as they add them to the course blog roll.

Opening my heart to connections and possibilities...

Giggling/Smiling at the memories of Thanksgiving dinner - so much fun :)

Feeling so much better and calmer, and ready to start the day...

28 November 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Right now, I'm most thankful for an internet connection, which has been sorely lacking for the past couple of days...

As I have an American husband - we met in Kenya in 1987, and yes, a long story! - we shall be celebrating today like our cousins from over the pond :)

When we lived in California, after we were first married, Thanksgiving was always my favourite holiday. It seemed totally free of the commercialism and ultra-expectation that often blight Christmas, and was all about family, food and fun!

We would gather with Nick's relations - sometimes at the coast, sometimes in the mountains. Everyone brought their speciality dish - his great-aunt's roasted yams with marshmallows was my favourite, closely followed by his Mum's green beans with bacon... *sigh*

Now, we live here in the UK, it's a much smaller affair, but Nick has the day off, and we'll be having a roast turkey crown with all the trimmings. He's invited a couple of his friends to dinner tonight. The kids and I haven't met them before, but I'm sure the evening will be full of Thanksgiving blessings -  food, family, (new) friends and fun!

And I'll close with today's card which seems rather appropriate

with a lovely Mary Cassett pastel, and Mr Wilde's wise words:
Ordinary riches can be stolen, real riches cannot.
In your soul are infinitely precious things that cannot be taken from you.
Amen to that!

26 November 2013

Catching slippery thoughts...

Photo taken this morning at 7am in response to today's card, which can be found on the Card of the Day page,
which I've rearranged so the newest entry is at the top :)
I opened my eyes at my usual 5.30am, with sooooo many thoughts swirling, I knew I had to get out of bed, come downstairs, pour a glass of water, and start to write them down before they disappeared...
Thoughts are like Will o' the Wisps, you know, or flashing fish (as Virginia Woolf describes in A Room of One's Own), which need to be caught before they dart away.
I wrote about yesterday - spent with a dear, dear friend, who I don't see often enough as she lives in deepest, darkest Wales...
But mostly I wrote about the blog, and yesterday's 'About' lesson, and realized I hadn't verbalized what this new blog is actually about!
And I was reminded, quite visibly, about my Word for 2013 - Be a Vessel (you can read here how my Word came to me).
This wee coconut offering bowl sits on my altar opposite where I sit on the sofa as a daily reminder of my Word, and I suddenly I realized the blog is my vessel - my offering bowl, my receptacle, where I place my words and images to share with whoever wishes to partake.
But also, it's the other meaning of 'vessel' - it's my boat, my cargo ship, in which I place 'stuff' about me and my life and my own voyage of discovery, and launch it out into wide sea of Blogland.
And I was reminded of the Marcel Proust quote:
The real voyage of discovery lies not in finding new landscapes,
but in having new eyes.
Be a Vessel has both these meanings to me, and both private and public applications:
I pray alone daily, yet sometimes I want to pray with others.
I write alone daily, yet sometimes I want others to read my writing.
I travel alone on my journey into meaning, but sometimes I want companions.
Creating anything, including blogs, is usually a solitary activity, but many creators hope to have their creations seen, heard, tasted, experienced by others, hence we put them out into the world...
After all, we are by nature social creatures (at least some of the time!) and we do like to share our lives and experiences :)

25 November 2013

Getting the message....

Today, I drew Friday's card again - 3 of Wands with the Klimt painting and Stevenson quote!

Guess I really need to hear the words again...

To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming,
is the only end of life.

Then I suddenly remembered, I'd written out a quote from Christina's A Field Guide to NOW in my journal yesterday...

OK... I'm getting the message... new day, new post, new blog - it's all in the process of Becoming...

23 November 2013

The Fool - Today's card

My card for today from the Art of Life tarot deck.

The image is Jester with a Lute by Franz Hals with the quote:

You must live in the present,
launch yourself on every wave,
find your eternity in each moment.
Henry David Thoreau

A timely remember for every day, n'est pas??

UPDATE 10.30am
This has just arrived in the post...

I ordered it weeeeks ago (and I confess totally forgot about it), and it arrives today!

How's that for timing??

21 November 2013

45 things about me

  1. I'm a typical Taurean - stubborn, earthy, love my food :)
  2. I'm diabetic - Type 2 diagnosed 15 years ago
  3. I'm an introverted extrovert - I love people, but I must have regular times of silence and solitude.
  4. I'm a Type 4 on the Enneagram (the Overview is pretty accurate!).
  5. I keep a gratitude list writing 5 things I'm grateful for each day.
  6. I love dark chocolate - 70%+ cocoa content.
  7. I'm a life-long learner.
  8. I can't speak any foreign languages, though I studied Latin, Greek and Hebrew.
  9. I wanted to be an academic - I read Theology at Oxford.
  10. I wanted to be a mother more :)
  11. I have 3 children, but Connie died in-utero at 30 weeks.
  12. My maternal grandmother was Irish.
  13. I'm a life-long Liverpool FC supporter, and have a signed photo of Steven Gerrard on the wall (a gift from my Dad several Christmases ago!).
  14. My paternal grandfather was a Scouser.
  15. I'm a devotee of the Bloomsbury Group.
  16. I met my American husband in Kenya.
  17. We celebrate our silver wedding anniversary next April (2014).
  18. I turn 50 the day before!
  19. I collect quotes - mainly about art, literature, culture.
  20. Our house is full of books.
  21. I've broken both kneecaps (separate accidents).
  22. I'm a former Anglican lay minister.
  23. I've always been a lousy baker - much to my mother's dismay.
  24. Our daughter inherited my mother's gifted-baker gene :)
  25. My mother died in 2000 aged 55.
  26. I was a couch potato even before the stroke - never been sporty!
  27. I'm a Strictly Come Dancing fan.
  28. Spring and Autumn are my favourite seasons - I endure Summer and Winter.
  29. I have crushes on Simon Baker and Bradley Cooper.
  30. I have a girl-crush on Jennifer Lawrence.
  31. I'd love to have dinner with Grayson Perry :)
  32. I always chew gum after I eat - got to look after my teeth and gums!
  33. I've always been an early-to-bed, early-to-riser - need my 8 hours.
  34. Toast is my favourite clothes label, but I can only afford sale, or second-hand, items :(
  35. I lost my identity when I couldn't read for a year after the stroke.
  36. I have learnt to write, draw, paint with my left hand - I was right-handed...
  37. I don't like vinegar, anchovies, chilli, spicy curry, salad cream.
  38. I'm terrified of spiders.
  39. I'd love to do a parachute jump.
  40. I've never been skiing.
  41. I want to visit Florence.
  42. I'm allergic to Elastoplast.
  43. I could become a dotty cat lady in my dotage.
  44. I am a sensuous person - I delight in my 5 senses and how they help me encounter the physical world, but...
  45. I am a Soul having a human experience in this particular time and place.

19 November 2013


OK, Post 1 of a whole new blog...

Scary, exciting, a new place to live, to write, to express myself in this truly extraordinary world of Blogland :)

I've learnt A LOT today - how to create pages, how to edit photos - even though I've lived in Blogland since 2006, things keep changing...

My plan (hah!) is to gather existing pieces from my other blog homes onto their respective pages (there's nothing there yet, so bare with me...)

I have written About me, so do drop by and say hello :)

The Home page will always have the newest piece of writing/photos of whatever catches my mind's eye and reminds me that today is another deep day...

I won't write any more now, as it's already gone 11 am, and yes, I am still in my pj's!!

But welcome, it's so lovely to be here xx