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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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Quote for the Day : Grace

“You say grace before meals. All right. But I say grace before the concert and the opera, and grace before the play and pantomime, and grace before I open a book, and grace before sketching, painting, swimming, fencing, boxing, walking, playing, dancing and grace before I dip the pen in the ink.”

— G.K. Chesterton

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Randomness

Randomness

I haven’t done a “Random Facts about Me” post for a while, which is surprising when you think about how random I actually am at any given moment.  These posts are fairly self-indulgent but I am bored and need to write something and, because my house is VERY TIDY for once, I cannot bear to do any crafting and mess it up just in order to write a post.

So, here are some more random morsels of information about me.  Please do not use them to steal my identity or write some sort of unauthorised biography that will shame my family.  They already know I’m a weirdo – they don’t need to see it in writing.  None of them read this, so it’s ok.

  1. I have OCD.  Or, as I like to call it OOCD (Occasional Obsessive Compulsive Disorder).  I do things like counting stuff before I go to bed, doing things in a certain order etc.  My pegs on the washing line have to match – not only match but be colour-coordinated with the item they are hanging.  I should just get all the same coloured pegs so they all match and then I wouldn’t have this problem and laundry wouldn’t take me twice as long as it should.  Sometimes my OOCD is worse than other times.  Stress makes it worse and then it can be difficult for me to leave the house in a timely fashion – it takes time to check locks and power switches, count something over and over etc.  But I don’t do the obsessive hand-washing thing or over-the-top house-cleaning (ha! as if!).  The tags on my bathroom towels have to face inwards – to not do that makes me frantic.  I have to put my shoes on in a certain order (which makes me very grateful that I only have two feet to choose from) and even saying prayers is probably due to compulsion rather than any kind of obligation.  I mean, I’m not even religious but I do have to say a prayer at night.  Otherwise, obviously, the WORLD WILL COLLAPSE AND IT WILL ALL BE MY FAULT!!!  Some days I don’t have issues at all (hence the “occasional”) but it makes its presence known when I am down or emotional or worried about other things.  Hardly anyone knows about this.  But now you do. Keep it to yourself.
  2. I am a bit obsessed with Law and Order : Criminal Intent, and have been, since it started in 2001.  I watch it over and over again when I am needing comfort and de-stressing.  I am slightly in love with Vincent D’Onofrio’s character, Robert Goren.  I have pretty much given up on all other men, except for him.  He’s perfect.  My friends think I am a crazy person, and my male friends do not understand my fascination with this head-tilting, quirky, eccentric detective.  I don’t care. 
  3. I have night terrors.  A lot. I have always had them, since I was a child.  They are called “terrors” for a reason – they are terrifying.  My family grew used to me screaming at night, which gives you some indication of how often I was doing it.  Used to freak my ex-husband out.  Medication helps to some extent, but since coming off my anti-depressants and other sleep-inducing drugs, I am back to doing the nightly screech & wake.  I hate it.  I don’t know why I do it.  I’m sure the neighbours think I’m being murdered or something.  Why can’t I have nice dreams about winning the lottery and marrying certain NYPD  detectives?  It seems very unfair, and something I should have grown out of a long time ago.
  4. I don’t like gold jewellery.  I never wear it.  Even when people give it to me (on the odd occasion), I keep it in its box and don’t wear it.  I only like silver.  I feel bad, but people will insist on giving it to you as though they’re going to convert you to their side.  I don’t like gold.  It looks super tacky to me, does not go with my skin tone and is very expensive.  Let us not forget that I am simple, very pale, and very tight where money is concerned.  Thank you for giving me jewellery though, if you have.  You’ll never see me wearing it though.
  5. I hate abbreviations in text or written message.  Do not “OMG” me.  Do not use “totes” in a sentence or expect me to me say/type  “LOL”.  I will not do it, no matter how much of a hurry I am in.  I am not a thirteen year old girl.
  6. I am a very bad vegetarian.  Sometimes I eat fish.  I feel desperately guilty about this.
  7. I once stole a piece of a castle when I visited the UK, twenty years ago.  It was just a bit of broken brick in a castle ruin, but I still feel like I am days away from being apprehended by Interpol or something.
  8. I sing, a lot.  But NEVER in front of anyone.  I will literally quit my job or jump off a bridge if someone tries to force me to do it.  Same goes with dancing.  I get jiggy with it at home in my PJs, but no one else will ever witness it. 
  9. I am a chronic blusher.  I will turn rosy-cheeked at the slightest provocation.  It tormented me in my high-school years.  I looked like I permanently had a fever.
  10. I have never been drunk.  I don’t see the point in it.
  11. I have never smoked.  I don’t see the point in it.  It is for stupid people and I try very hard not to be stupid, if I can help it.
  12. I am terrified of social situations.  I would rather rip out my own appendix than go to a party.  Fortunately, my body is very much in tune with my brain and emotions, so I can, however unintentionally, make myself physically ill enough to prevent me from going to parties and having to interact with people.  Again, something I should have grown out of.  But it’s a bit late now.
  13. I can’t wear yellow.  It makes me look very ill.  I actually like yellow, but it does not like me.  If I wear it, I look like I have gone into liver failure or have caught some sort of plague.
  14. I have been a bridesmaid three times.  That is enough.  I shan’t do it again.  You can only wear bad dresses so many times.  Plus you always have to dance and I have already explained my aversion to that. Dancing in a bad dress is just an unkind form of punishment, perpetuated by people who are supposed to care about you.
  15. I get violently angry when people spell “lose” with an extra “o”.  It makes me apoplectic.
  16. I like using the word “apoplectic”. 
  17. I have had approximately 20-25 geese during my life.  I love them.  I wish I had some now but I don’t think they would like living in a courtyard with no grass.  And my neighbours would complain.  Even though geese are AWESOME and anyone who thinks otherwise is a crazy person.IMG_1420
  18. My Mum is buying me some plastic bowls for Christmas because I keep breaking my ceramic ones.  I can no longer be trusted with nice things.
  19. I love writing. I don’t claim to be any good at it but I do enjoy it.  I like waffling, basically.  Having a blog is a great outlet for this.  Having people occasionally read it is amazing and humbling.  And somewhat scary.  But it also keeps you honest and evolving and accountable, I suppose.  I’ve stopped worrying about revealing things about myself that may be embarrassing.  At least I’m not lying or making myself out to be something I’m not.  I have wanted to write a book since I was little, but have yet to get started on that.  I don’t know what it would be about.  A goose-loving, messy, slightly crazy grammar nazi who falls in love with an NYPD detective and lives happily ever after in a house with no breakables.  Sounds like a best seller to me, people!
  20. I am terrible at hugs.  I want to be better at them but I am very awkward.  I seem to not be able to coordinate my arms and the rest of my body into one organised movement.  Plus I have tremendous self-image issues so I feel that any physical contact with people will only give them tactile proof that I am hideously repulsive. At the same time, I am desperate for hugs and affection.  Such is the dichotomy of my life. 

21.      “Dichotomy” is another word I like using.

So, that’s pretty much all I can come up with today (thank goodness for that, you say!).  About half way through I lost interest.  I hope you stuck with it though.  Any suggestions for what I can call my best-selling novel will be kindly accepted, as will step-by-step instructions for the perfect hug.  If you know a cure for night terrors and social anxiety, let me know that too – I am all ears/eyes.  Just don’t ask me to dance 🙂

Journaling Fail (or, How to stall your journaling journey)

Journaling Fail (or, How to stall your journaling journey)

I have always kept a diary.  Since I was eight years old, I have been compelled to write down my thoughts and worries, dreams and regrets in little and big books, hard backs and spiral-bound, lined and plain.  I did have a few years of non-writing, around the time I was married – there just never seemed an opportunity to sit and pen anything, which seems a shame now as I would like to look back at that time, for all its sadness and loneliness, just to see how I have grown or changed since then.

I’ve started again recently, if somewhat sporadically and have enjoyed “getting it all down on paper”.  But what I have always wanted to do, is create lovely art journals, like the ones I see all the time on the internet and in craft magazines.  I think I have been reluctant to start one because I want it to be perfect and I don’t want to spoil anything by doing a dodgy page.  Which is dumb.  The whole point of journaling is to be free and creative.  Spontaneous.  Spontaneity is not something I am good at.  I can’t just slap paint or paper down and see what happens.  I wish I could – but I’m just a bit too uptight for that ha ha.  I don’t trust my own creative mistake-making process to come up with something I am happy with.  I’ve been inspired by Dianne Faw’s wonderful 30-day journal challenge.  Even if I get panicky thinking about one day of journaling, never mind 30 days of it…

But I have decided to try.  While I am on leave, recovering from my surgery, I am trying desperately to do all the things I never get time for, including art-for-art’s-sake.  I tend to make things with the intent of selling them or giving as gifts – I rarely, if ever, just make things for myself.  My song lyric collage is probably the one thing I have made for me. Just for me.  I love it.  It’s nowhere near perfect or polished or anything else remotely sale-worthy, but I was so happy with it, and its creation was a very cathartic experience.  There’s a lot of meaning in them thar’ words.  Even if only I understand their significance.

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So, I have started a little journaling book.  So convinced am I that I will mess something up, I have started in the middle of the book.  I don’t even know why I think that will help.  But it seems like less pressure if I don’t begin on page one.  Page one is…scary.

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I started doodling, because that seems to be the start of everything for me.  I really want to add words but have never liked my own handwriting so I am trying to come up with a good font I can replicate that doesn’t look rubbish when I try to, um, replicate it.  See, already the pressure begins!

When in doubt or distracted or bored, my go-to doodling themes are flowers, hearts or stars.  I’m such a girl.  I also do blobs.  Big fan of blobs.  And these weird, feathery swirly designs.  But today I went with a flower because I had seen some similar designs in one of the colouring-in-for-adults books (so awesome!  we have permission to enjoy colouring again! Because it’s mindfulness, not wasting time…) and a flower seemed like something I could do with minimum self-annoyance and judgement.  So I doodled…

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…and went a bit squinty-eyed at the detailed bits…

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And then I kinda stopped and procrastinated and thought about things I could write.  And then procrastinated some more and went and wrote this post instead.  Sigh.  Oh well, it’s a start.  And a start is better than nothing or, God forbid, a blank page…

Hope you are happy today, doing what ever makes you smile 🙂

25 Blogging Prompts

25 Blogging Prompts

So, lately I have been using a lot of blog prompts to help me get rid of some writer’s block (otherwise known as “My life is boring and I have nothing to write about”…) and I have found them very helpful. Sometimes you just need a bit of a push in the right direction. Or any direction. More of a shove and a couple of slaps, really.

So I thought “Why not come up with some of my own, to help other people? And hey, also create a blog post at the same time?” Two birds, one stone, that sort of thing. So here goes – just a few suggestions I thought might help get you started if you’re stuck for ideas. I might end up using some of them myself at a later date. Is that bad blogging etiquette? To use your own blog prompts? Is it cheating? I’m not sure…you can let me know.

Anyway, here goes :

  1. Write a post about your favourite outfit, why you like it and how it makes you feel.
  2. Tell us your favourite joke.
  3. If you could be doing anything right now, this very minute, what would it be?
  4. List your favourite songs of all time.
  5. List your worst songs of all time.
  6. If you could create your own brand of cheese, what would it be called? How would you market it? What would it taste like?
  7. You’re a mad scientist and you’ve been given funding to make a hybrid animal. Ethics and morality aside, what two (or more) species do you want to combine? What will the finished creatures be called? Will it benefit or disadvantage humanity?
  8. If you could visit any period in time (without changing history or affecting lives/futures), which would it be? Would you like to see dinosaurs or hang out with flappers in the 1920s?
  9. Write a post about the child you once were and how he/she differs from the person you are today.
  10. Write your obituary!
  11. Find some old school reports (if you still have them) and comment on what you read. Were you a “conscientious student”? Were you “easily distracted”, “popular with peers” or constantly visiting the principal’s office?
  12. Tell us your favourite, fool-proof recipe.
  13. If you could choose another name for yourself, what would it be?
  14. It’s 1985. What are you doing? Who are you with? (If you weren’t born yet, describe what your parents were doing).
  15. Write a post about your crush (or crushes) in high-school.
  16. Tell us your biggest fear.
  17. Write a song about cupcakes.
  18. Go outside and take 10 photos of random objects, close up and from interesting angles. Write about these miniature worlds.
  19. Write about your dream job. It can be something made up.
  20. Write about a job you could never imagine yourself doing. Why would you be bad at it? Why would it be bad for you?
  21. Tell us your worst traits and your best. Be honest.
  22. Write an entire post from the perspective of your right ear.
  23. You’ve won $10 million. You’re not allowed to spend any of it on yourself. What do you do with it?
  24. You’ve won $10 million. You’re only allowed to spend it on yourself. What do you do with it?
  25. A movie is being made about you and your life. Who do you want to write the screenplay? Which actor would you like to play you? Who will play your family and friends? Extra points : what is the moral/theme of the movie (besides being about you!)?

Just a few suggestions for you.  Hope they were helpful 🙂

A Sentence a Day

A Sentence a Day

For Christmas, my best friend CG gave me a sort-of journal, titled “A Sentence a Day”.  As the title suggests, it has daily prompts for journaling your year (designed to show two years’ worth of entries so you can look back and see how you changed or stayed the same over that period) and encourage self-reflection.  It’s really a book for younger people (I discovered this on one page as the prompt for the day was “What did you do at school today?) but I’ve been happily filling in the pages and have enjoyed having that extra “push” to prompt me into writing.  I’ve been a bit hopeless lately (as would be obvious by the lack of blogging I have done over the last month or so) and so it’s been helpful having the little book to look forward to each day.

So, because I am literally out of ideas this week, and because my house is spotlessly clean and tidy (miracle of miracles!) – I don’t want to mess it up, not even for crafting! – I’m going to take a few of the prompts from the book and write my responses here.  Feel free to do the same on your blog (if you have one) or in your diary or wherever.  It’s cheating, ever so slightly, but I am completely inspiration-less this week.  I hope my mojo comes back soon, otherwise I’m in trouble.

So here goes – I’m just going to flick through the pages and choose random prompts…

  1. How do you feel about speaking in front of people?  Horrible!  Petrified, self-conscious and suddenly devoid of all thought and intelligence!
  2. Who is the funniest person you know?  Definitely my brother 🙂
  3. What’s your favourite sea creature?  Can I say a mermaid? 🙂  I think seahorses are amazing and beautiful but I also love whales, dolphins, seals and stingrays.  Ooh, and those creepy Vampire Squids!  They’re awesome!
  4. Do you have any bad habits?  God, where do I start?!  I chew my fingers and pick at them.  It’s disgusting.  I’m a teeth-grinder and a tongue-sucker (in my sleep).  Various unladylike habits.  All anxiety related, but bad habits nevertheless.  I used to suck my thumb when I was a child.  Then I got braces and couldn’t do it any more!
  5. What is unforgivable?  Child abuse and abuse of animals.
  6. What was the last time you saw a movie at the cinema?  What was it?  Last night!  I saw “St Vincent” with my work friend CI.  Excellent movie, great evening. We had dinner out (no dessert – good girls!) and chatted and enjoyed a great movie starring the amazing Bill Murray.  He’s a favourite of mine.
  7. What’s your favourite flower?  Violets, obviously! 🙂
  8. Describe how your house is decorated : My home has no definite style.  I am a bit schizophrenic in my decorating tastes.  I like bright colours but then I also like white and shabby-chic.  So I have a bit of everything.  I’m only renting so I can’t paint walls or do to much to the house in terms of decorating or changing any structures.  I like to have “pockets” of themes or colour palettes.  Each of my bookshelves has a different “vibe” going on.

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  1. What do you like most about your own personality?  I think I’m quite kind.  I try to be anyway.
  2. What does your dream house look like?  Cute.  I’ve always wanted a cute little house with a white picket fence, a pretty garden, and a warm and welcoming feel to it.  I’d like a porch with a rocking chair on it.  I’d like to be near the ocean and have room for animals.  I’d like an upstairs section (even if it’s just one little room) and a pretty guest room so visitors could stay the night.
  3. Describe your hairstyle : Slightly mental and uncooperative.  I have thick, unruly hair which I have grown to be grateful for.  I don’t try and tame it these days – it does its own thing and I do mine.  We agree to meet somewhere in the middle 🙂

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I have promised myself I will get better at blogging this year, so hopefully won’t need the little book to help me too many times throughout the coming months.  I’m enjoying my nice tidy home right now and so I am trying to hold of from doing anything crafty or mess-making.  I’m not very good at relaxing and doing nothing so I am finding it hard to know what to do if I’m not busy being busy.  I’ve even considered doing some ironing today which just shows I am getting desperate!

Hope your New Year is going well and shaping up to be the best year yet.  There is so much uncertainty and fear in the world right now – I can only hope that your own little corner is peaceful and happy.

Thanks for dropping by x