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Quote for the Day : Water

Water does not resist. Water flows.
When you plunge your hand into it, all you feel is a caress.

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Water is not a solid wall, it will not stop you.
But water always goes where it wants to go, and nothing in the end can stand against it.

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Water is patient.
Dripping water wears away a stone.

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Remember that, my child. Remember you are half water.

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If you can’t go through an obstacle, go around it. Water does.

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— Margaret Atwood, The Penelopiad

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Brave : New Year Goals & Dreams

Can you believe it is a New Year’s AGAIN???  Where did 2017 go?  Actually, I don’t really care where it went – I just want it gone.  It was a pretty dreadful year.  Seems like everyone had it tough, in one way or another, and that the Universe was plotting against us by making kooky, crazy, scary and random things happen.  To be fair, the Universe does that all the time, but this year it seemed to just say “Ah, to hell with it!’ and just chucked everything it could at us.  Probably serves us right – maybe we needed some more wake up calls.  Especially me, I always sleep in 🙂

This was, until five seconds ago when I deleted all the text I’d spent ages typing, a very long post about my resolutions for the new year.  The usual stuff about losing weight, being more sociable, being a better housekeeper etc.  But I am actually feeling that those things are all part of the bigger picture of me just trying to be better than I am now.  And the majority of the things I want to change about myself all hinge on one thing, or my lack thereof : bravery.

I’m not very brave.  I am basically scared of everything.  In some ways, I guess that makes me braver than I think I am, because instead of curling up in my bed and staying there forever (which is what I really want to do pretty much every day lately), I get up and go out into the world.  Which is scary for me.  Always has been.  I don’t understand the world and it doesn’t understand me.

This week was hard.  I had to make decisions that were difficult and upsetting and made me feel horrible about myself and my judgements.  I don’t like hurting people, but this week I had to do that to someone who was hurting me.  And then it made me question whether or not they actually were hurting me, or if my fear and lack of courage was affecting my perception of the situation.  But I had to stand up for myself and that was hard.  I don’t do it often and it is not a comfortable feeling for me.  I am generally more at ease backing down or tolerating things, even if the other person is in the wrong.  So instead of feeling good about standing up for myself, I feel horribly sad and guilty and keep wondering if the other person is ok.

I had another situation where I had to be assertive (a man had left his dog in a hot car and he he did not take kindly to me suggesting that he move the car, or preferably the dog, into the shade) and it ended up with me in tears and, frankly, afraid that I was going to get punched in the face.  I did not feel victorious or proud of myself.  I felt scared and small and again questioned whether I was in the right.

I had to assert myself at work too – in front of a bunch of colleagues – and that was very difficult also.  Again, I was in the right, but it felt very wrong to stand there and say “Excuse me, but that is my responsibility I have to ask you to let me handle that”.  I ended up apologising to the person afterwards because I felt so rotten about it, even though I was only stating what was true and defending my own job.

So, if I am to pick one resolution for this year, it is to be brave.  And to stop apologising for having feelings and opinions and ideas of my own.  And to make the hard decisions when I have to, and stand by them.  And not let my fear of losing people stop me from standing up for myself and my own needs and values.  And, most importantly, to embrace change and not fear it.  I feel like this year is going to be a year of change and I have to be ready for that, one way or the other.

So, here’s to bravery and self-belief.  And to standing up for what you believe in.  And to not letting someone else tell you how you should live your life.

Thank you for reading – Happy New Year to you all.  May 2018 bless you with many wonderful experiences, and the courage to embrace them all.  Be kind to one another and yourselves this year.

x

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That’s iced tea, by the way, not wine…
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With Brave Wings Collage

Another tiny butterfly collage (about 4 x 4″).  I seem to be using a lot more pinks these days.  This may well be because I am running low on patterned papers and I am just trying to use what I have, rather than buying any more.  Or maybe I just like pink more than I used to…  Anyway, I like the colour combos used here.  I DO NOT like the big paintbrush hair that is stuck on with gel medium (look closely near the right antennae) but, happily, it has almost seamlessly morphed into the flourish of script nearby.  So, hopefully no one will notice.  Except that I just told you.  Look away, look away!

Not sure that my own wings are very brave these days.  Tentative, maybe.  Anxious, definitely.  But brave?  I’m still working on that one.

Thanks for stopping by.  May your wings be brave and your antennae free from pesky paintbrush hairs! 🙂

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Metal Boogers

Apologies for the title of this post (as well as for the tardiness of said post), but it will make sense in a minute.

So, today, finally, after procrastinating for six long years, I got my nose and ears re-pierced.  I had them done 12 years (nose) and, ahem, 29 years (ears) ago, but had to remove them all in 2010 when I was in hospital.  Because I was in there for so long and then recovering for a full year, I had to let all the piercings close up.  Which was a pain, but not the most pressing issue on my agenda.

I wanted to get them done again.  I didn’t feel “me” without my nose stud and not having earrings was also a weird feeling.  So, today, after thinking about it for a long time, I went and got it done.  Like a boss.  I was nervous – I am not very brave – and did warn the lovely Bree (my piercer) that I am a fainter.  But she was so nice and kind and professional and took the utmost care with me.  No rushing, no pressure to choose jewellery, no looking down on me for being a 40-something old chook who wanted something dainty and non-dramatic.  Having your nose pierced is dramatic enough for most people.

Anyway, did it hurt?  Well, yes, but not as bad you might think.  I don’t know why I was even worried.  It’s painful, but nowhere near as bad as having, say, a vaccination.  It’s over and done with in seconds.  I kept telling myself beforehand “You’ve had thousands of injections.  You’ve had a renal biopsy.  You’ve had a breast reduction.  You can do this…”  And indeed I could.  And did.

My cousin came with me as moral support (she was supposed to her nose done too but chickened out – that’s ok, I don’t think it was the right time for her) and said I was super brave and didn’t flinch at all (although, I think flinching would be a little bit dumb considering someone is pushing metal through parts of your body at the time).  I didn’t even get woozy, which is what I thought would happen.  I didn’t even bleed (when I got my nose pierced previously, it bled LIKE A STUCK PIG).

I chose dainty little silver (titanium) balls for my ears and a slightly blingier diamante stud for my nose.  Swarovski crystal doncha know!  It was all a tad expensive, but at the end of the day I got the best service, best-quality jewellery and excellent aftercare.  I would rather not skimp on any of those things.

Now for the less exciting part – the aftercare.  Lots of “being careful” and not touching the piercings and making sure I use the saline spray stuff to keep them clean.  The hardest part is the whole not-touching thing.  I am a fiddler so remembering not to touch the earrings in particular is going to be hard.

Anyway, it’s all done now.  I hope they heal up well and don’t have any issues or infections.  I haven’t done before but you never know…  Hopefully my little metal booger will behave and not get all crusty and gross (sorry, but it happens in the healing stage sometimes).

So, today I am feeling glad that I was brave and got through it all and didn’t embarrass myself by fainting or throwing up or squealing or crying ha ha.  Not bad for this old thing who isn’t very brave at the best of times 🙂

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Strawberry Ricotta Sweet Treat

Strawberry Ricotta Sweet Treat

Today the temperatures in Perth soared to well over 44 degrees celsius – that’s over 100F in the old money – and everyone just about melted.  Plants wilted and died, pets panted and everyone stayed indoors as much as possible.  I don’t mind the heat but even I was a tad uncomfortable today.  Didn’t stop me going out like a madman and heading for the shops though.  I needed beads and jewellery supplies and also needed to get my invitations for my birthday bash printed.  I probably could have waited until a cooler day but hey, where would the fun be in that?  Besides, the roads were quiet, as sensible, less heat-tolerant people stayed home.

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This afternoon I had a talk with hubby (soon to be ex hubby I suppose – hate saying that but have to come to terms with it) and it made me feel so much better about things.  Not because we are going to get back together – we’re not – and not because I think deep down he still loves me – he doesn’t – but because I stood up for myself and told him how much he had hurt me.  I made him apologise to me.  I don’t care if the apology was sincere or not – I just needed to hear it; its sincerity is irrelevant to me at this point.  I needed to show him that, hurt and damaged as I am, I’m not beaten.  I deserve better and expect it for myself from now on. He’s not a bad guy and I don’t wish him any harm, I really don’t (although I was glad to see he had put on weight – which is nasty of me but I think I’m allowed at least one smug moment).  I want him to be happy and to figure out who he is.  I just don’t need to be around while he does it. So, I feel that, in the end, I am stronger than
I thought and maybe I can get through this and come out the other end smiling and resilient.  Maybe.

So, this evening, feeling the need for a sweet treat and not wanting to completely destroy my diet, I rummaged around in the fridge and cupboard to see what I could rustle up.  I purposely keep my fridge pretty bare so that I am not tempted by easy (i.e. fattening) foods and it was pretty slim pickings in there.  I did, however, have some leftover low-fat ricotta, one sad little English muffin, some maple syrup and a punnet of frozen strawberries (I froze a batch of them last time I went shopping – they go off so quickly and I don’t like to waste them so I froze them after eating the best ones, thinking I could use the others in smoothies or whatever and it didn’t matter if they were a bit over-ripe).

Long story short, I mixed a little bit of syrup into the ricotta with a bit of cinnamon, spread it over the toasted English muffin and topped it with the frozen strawberries (which were delicious – they might be my new favourite thing!) and drizzled the whole lot with maple syrup to finish.  Oh yummy!  Tasted so delish and was reasonably healthy, satisfied my sweet cravings and didn’t leave me feeling guilty the way I would have done if I had given in and picked up some ice cream from Baskin Robbins (’cause you know that’s what I was thinking of doing).  It was cooling and sweet and super tasty.  Perfect!  A nice change and something I will make again if I desperately need something dessert-like in a pinch.  Try it yourself 🙂

 Please excuse bad photo – it was late at night and I had no decent lighting – had to take the shot inside the fridge and the strawberries kept keeling over – they were very uncooperative!  🙂

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Stay cool everyone (on this side of the globe – everyone else try and stay warm!) 🙂