Tuesday, December 27, 2016

My Word for 2017

"For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises again." 
[Proverbs 24:16] Bible 

I have chosen a Word of the Year for over ten years now. The inspiration came from one of my favorite scrapbookers...Ali Edwards. I have always been in awe of how GOOD she is at documenting her life. So when she encouraged her readers to pick a Word and build on it all year long....I couldn't resist.

Some of my Words through the years have been...


Sometimes I just KNOW what my Word will be and I thought that was going to be the case for 2017.
LOVE was my first pick for MONTHS. I even had a cuff made in the fall thinking that would be it.
But then
when I REALLY got to thinking about it...it changed.
And as usual instead of me choosing my Word...
my Word chose me.

I honestly can't remember when I've been so excited about a New Year, A New Word and New Goals.

2016 was a quiet, self-reflecting year for me.
I spent a lot of time in my own little cocoon...reading, dreaming and being way too hard on myself.

2017 is my Coming Out Party!!
I am breaking out of my shell...
Ready to take on the World!

My Word for 2017 is

I have made some pretty sizable goals for myself in 2017.

The one I am most excited about...
the one I know will change my perspective in life...
the one that will allow me to reach ALL my other goals...
a Runner

In my 30's I began running and LOVED it.
It changed me.
I felt more confident...
more determined to reach my goals.
I wasn't afraid
and I ALWAYS did my best.

Not gonna lie...
I am in terrible shape.
I have 35 pounds heavier...
I am out of breath quickly...
and I am 50 years old.

But you know what??
NONE of those things is going to STOP ME!!


I would LOVE to know what YOUR Word for 2017 is.
Please share with me in the comments here or in my FB group!!

Let's make 2017 our BEST year EVER!!!!!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Join Me for "Art Journaling Love"

"We shall not cease from exploration; 
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time."
-T.S. Eliot

I found Art Journaling about 8 years ago...

And it changed my world.

I LOVE it!


Whether you are BRAND NEW to Art Journaling
or have kept one for years...
I hope you join me on Monday, January 23rd for "Art Journaling Love".

Join me for...
*Facebook Live posts
*Lots of peeks into my journals...even my first ones (yikes!)
*My favorite supplies and where I buy them
*How I set up my Studio
*Techniques to try
*Prompts to get you started in YOUR journals

And what I am REALLY excited about...
Three other Journalers will be joining me!!
Sharing their ideas, journals and techniques!!

You can sign up in my FB group Mind.Body.Soul
It's totally FREE
And it's totally going to be sooo much FUN!!!

"Art Journaling Love"
January 23rd-February 13th, 2017
See the pinned post and just let me know in the comment section.

Hope you can make it!!!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

My One Life-Changing Awakening

“A kind of light spread out from her. And everything changed color. And the world opened out. And a day was good to awaken to. And there were no limits to anything. And the people of the world were good and handsome. And I was not afraid any more.” 
― John SteinbeckEast of Eden

In this world of social media we are constantly taking photos and sharing them with the world. Our vacations, our celebrations, our daily lives, our pets, our kids, ourselves. 

We more often than not only show people what we want them to see...the good stuff.
The happy times.
The "Hey, look at what I did" type of stuff. 

And that's Ok.

But sometimes while we are scrolling through our Facebook feed or Instagram account that little green monster takes root in our Hearts....making us feel "less than".
Making us wonder why everyone else seems to be living a better life than we are.

Sometimes I go through my own FB posts and think...WOW, I am so blessed. I have been all across the United States, I have an amazing family, home, pets, things. 
My life looks so easy and perfect on Facebook. 
Everything is all so pretty and the way a life is supposed to be.

But the reality is, underneath all the good, the "perfect" is me and my depression.
Instead of a love of self...I have a hate and loathing and disgust.

This is a recent Selfie I posted....

I don't think most people would see how much I really dislike myself in this photo.
True, this was a good day. 
I felt pretty this day.
I felt ok about myself.

But the truth is 80% of the time I don't.
I hide.
I sit on my couch wasting time and wondering where I went. 
Where did all my desire for life go?
It's not that I am not happy...I have hundreds of moments of JOY weekly. 
But in my Heart I am not happy with ME. 

The past few years I have piled on 30 pounds of stress weight. And instead of being active and doing something about it I continue to eat when I'm not hungry which leads me into a deeper place of anger and bitterness and isolation.

But my friends, yesterday....


And I MUST share it with you so if you are like me and feeling awful about yourself and your life you can know that you are not alone!!!


And maybe you can learn something from me!

Yesterday my Mama, Roger and I went to the Kansas City Dinner Theater. We have had season tickets for years and I really enjoy spending that time with them.

Yesterday as I tried to find something to wear that was festive I realized jeans and shirts I had bought just a few months ago were getting too tight. All day all I could think about was how tight my pants were and I kept screaming at myself in my head...."What's wrong with YOU! Why can't you just get a grip and be disciplined!!!!"

And as I sat there watching the play all I could think about was the dessert I had ordered for intermission. I wasn't even hungry but I ordered it anyway. I was having this battle in my head..."Don't eat that dessert. You don't need it. But I want it. It will taste so good. And besides it's Christmas...I deserve a treat."

I ate it.

And as I ate it I looked around me and saw women just a bit older than me, overweight, eating, too. None of them looked happy.

I got back on the bus to go home feeling VERY full and tired from all the sugar.
An old friend I haven't seen in years was on the bus, too. We had visited a bit on the way down and enjoyed catching up.

Now, as I sat on the bus, ready to take a nap and reflect yet again on my failures of the day, my friend got my attention and we began chatting. It felt so good talking, it made me forget myself for awhile.

As she talked her mood began changing a bit as she shared a story with me about a loved one's medical emergency. As she shared I realized the loved one she was talking about was her husband. The more she shared it became evident that he had died. 
He was only 54 and was killed in a terrible accident. 
She never got to see him before he passed away. 
She never got to say goodbye.

And then I remembered on our way down she was telling about all these bus trips she had been taking and was planning and I had thought to myself..."Where's her husband? Are they divorced?"

And there I was sitting on the bus hearing her tell me he was dead. And even though she loved all the trips she was going on...she was alone. She had no one to share them with. The love of her life was gone.

I got home and the house was empty. I kept thinking about her story and she was going home to an empty house, too...one that would always be empty.
I began crying.
I was thinking about my own sweet husband...the love of my life and my Birthday gift from him.

My dream trip to Hawaii. We are supposed to be going at the end of May.
But I had already decided we weren't going. We were going to cancel.
We can go next year, I said.
I am out of shape, I whined.
And besides I hate the way  I look
and there is no way I am going to Hawaii looking and feeling like this.

I cried harder.
And then the Awakening happened.
I realized we are never promised the next minute, the next hour, the next week.
We never know when the ones we love will be gone.

And what have I been doing for THREE YEARS???!!!!!
I have been eating
and feeling sorry for myself
and worrying
and only half living.

I haven't given ANYTHING MY ALL in YEARS.

I haven't been dedicated or disciplined.

But I realized last night that I can BEGIN....

When my family got home I told them we needed to talk.
I poured out my HEART to my sweet family.
They not only listened to me but they HEARD ME!

I feel like George Bailey from "It's a Wonderful Life" ...it's the scene when realizes ZuZu's petals are in his pocket. And it's snowing and his lip is bleeding.
He realizes 

I know the Lord placed my friend in my path yesterday.
Her story was what I needed to hear.
I know I have a long way to go with healing myself...with loving myself.
But I haven't felt the desire, the excitement to TRULY get back up until now.

Girls, if you are struggling I TRULY understand and want you to know that I love you and I am praying for you. I ask for your prayers as well.

Merry Christmas!!!!
And here's to a Brand New Year to grow and learn to Love not only ourselves but each other.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

How I Found My Style!

“Creativity takes courage. ” 

I remember the EXACT moment I saw a journal page from Dina Wakley. I was searching for ideas on the internet for my new obsession....mixed-media. I had been a scrapbooker for YEARS but their was something about  mixed-media that drew me in.
I was never what you call "an artist" so I loved the "free for all" feel of collage, paint and glue.

the MOMENT I saw Dina's messy, bold, GLORIOUS pages I thought...
now THIS is FUN! This is ME! 

One of my fave pages inspired by Dina's inky, messy style. I remember using a spray bottle for the first time on my pages....it was a BLAST!!!
Her book "Art Journal Freedom" was about to be released and I couldn't WAIT! The minute it came in the mail I devoured this book. Playing and practicing along the way.
My very favorite thing that came out of her book was I FOUND MY STYLE!
It was the most FREEING thing that happened to me!

At times I suffer from anxiety and depression. Nothing gets me out of a funk like CREATING ART!!

I would gather up an entire pad of watercolor paper, my Dylusions Inks and sprays and my water-bottle and go outside. For the next hour or so I just let myself GO. It was Magnificent!

I use Dina's girl stamps more than any of my stamps combined I think! There are just so many creative things you can do with them!
 Through the years I have tried many "styles" of journaling and creating on canvas...but I always come back to ME...my messy, beautiful, colorful pages filled with Words to Inspire.

Another set of my Dina stamps and my Dina inspired style. 
  As I continued to create in my journals I found myself using Hearts in nearly all my work.
Soooo...of course I had to purchase Dina's Heart stamps. 

I LOVE using texture as well in my pages...lots of gesso here along with modeling paste. 

Each heart was stamped on painted paper made by me, cut out and glued to the page.

This is one of my favorite pages...everything from the gorgeous Dylusions sprays, to the vintage girl and Dina Hearts.

I am so grateful I found Dina Wakley's books....they TRULY changed the way I create and helped me embrace my inner artist!