Sunday, May 29, 2011

I've moved!

Due to technical issues with Blogger, I have decided to move my blog over to Wordpress. Please follow me on over! I *would* insert a click-able link, but those darn Blogger issues won't allow me to. Unfortunately, you will have to copy/paste

into your browser.

Sorry for any inconvenience, but I know you will understand :) See you over at Wordpress!

Getting deep in my art journal

For almost a year now I have been on a journey. Ackschully, several journeys, but that is another story. The journey I speak of now is with my art journal.

I first heard the term “art journal” from my dear friend Effy Wild. (You may know her as the den mama from the fabulous Wild Precious.)

At first she was just talking about this art thing she was doing and I thought it sounded cool, but I didn’t think of myself as an artist, so I didn’t bother to check it out. THEN, she started sharing photos. THAT got my attention. She was showing such amazing pages and yet she still just called it PLAYING. How could such beautiful work, be play??? I decided I HAD to learn more about art journaling.

Effy has been an inspiration to me this entire year, sharing new techniques, praising fellow journalers, linking videos and even creating a home and community for kindred souls to connect and share our stories.

I have never been one to think of myself as an artist, but that is starting to change. I am absolutely comfortable calling myself an “art journaler” and that is in great part to the family I have made at Wild Precious. The women I have met there are all inspiring, uplifting and kind and I am truly grateful for them in my life.

Effy has made sure that the site is well rounded and there is something for everyone. Along with art journaling prompts and videos, there is a photography group, a poetry group and even mandala making! Every group is healing in some way and Effy’s newest baby is sure to be no less than powerful. Beginning July 1 (registration begins June 1) Effy will present her very first art e-course called The Elements of Art Journaling. I am so excited! She is even offering one lucky creative a FREE spot!

Even though Effy is very much about the glitter, she is also very much about the deep and this course is all about the deep. It is going to take your soul on a journey through all five elements, Earth, Air, Water, Fire and Spirit and Effy will be there to guide you the entire way. I cannot WAIT to sign up for this course! I feel like I have just begun to scratch the surface of my inner deep and I need this course to push me even further. I want to be able to dive straight to my core and leave it all on the page. I still feel like I am holding back in an effort to make my pages "pretty" or "perfect" and, knowing Effy the way I do, I know this course will help me push past those boundries and get to my inner deep.

I will be at Wild Precious on June 1 with bells on. I hope to see you there!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Thank you's and updates

Since I posted about returning to the States several people have left me comments, and THANKFULLY they told me about the comment in another forum.

For MONTHS now I have been receiving comments and I had NO idea! When I moved to Bahrain I had to change my email address and even though I changed it for my Blogger account, I didn't realize I needed to change it for my email notifications as well.

For everyone who has left me a comment that I have not previously responded to... THANK YOU. I appreciate your kind thoughts, words of support and encouragement. I have now corrected the email address and will be able to respond when you actually LEAVE a comment, rather than six months later :D

Now, for an update on family life.

Christopher and I will be leaving Bahrain in one week. Chris is in the Navy, so he will be stationed here until December when his orders are up. He can not move until that time. Christopher and I will not be able to return before December, so once we leave, we will be gone for good. Chris is planning a trip home sometime this summer so that we can have a few weeks together mid way through our time apart.

I am not happy to be leaving, but I have accepted it and I am looking at it from a positive perspective. I am going to miss everyone here, but I am looking forward to many things back in the States as well.

I am going to make the most of the time I have left here in Bahrain and make as many memories as possible <3

We had a cookout and family game day with friends and family and we are planning to do it again next weekend. Today I am hanging with my cousin's wife (they are also stationed here.) She is interested in art journaling so I am passing on lots of the supplies I will not be able to take with me and we are going to the art store to get her a journal :D

Tonight we will all be taking a trip to the pet store to help the cousin's find new puppy goodies.

It's going to be a good week <3

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Heartbroken and disappointed

As you know I am currently in Bahrain with my husband and son. The situation here has been precarious to say the least and some days it has been downright scary.
For weeks now, there have been tanks on every corner and masked men with guns everywhere. While coming out of the grocery store Christopher and I were affected by tear gas in the air. I don't recommend it. Due to having a tourist passport, I am supposed to leave the country for a few hours every 28 days to renew my visa. Normally that would not have been a problem, but with travel restrictions, we are concerned about being able to get back home on any given day. I was supposed to fly to Dubai last weekend, but because of protests, we were on lock down and told not to go near the airport at all.
Chris and I have been discussing the possibility of myself and Christopher returning to the States. Many factors have come into play here and we have finally made a decision.
I have decided to leave Bahrain and go back to Virginia and I am devastated. My heart is breaking and some days I feel like I can't breathe. I have been crying for days and I am still not sure I have made the right decision. I have never been torn like this on any decision in my entire life. I have always been indecisive, but when it comes to major life decisions, I ALWAYS know what I want. I go with my gut. This time, it is not that easy.
I want to stay here with my husband, but I have to think of my son. He and I are literally couped up in our house for days or weeks at a time. We are not allowed to go out in town and many places are closed or off limits. Essential travel only is recommended. My son, who is a social butterfly, has not been able to make friends because there are no friends to be found. I wouldn't let him out of my sight even if there were. He is homesick and WANTING to leave.
I am also tired of being stuck at home all the time and feeling unsafe. I do miss my friends and family, but I would be willing to suck all of that up to be able to be here with Chris.
We were supposed to be here until August and Chris is not due home until December. I have to separate and uproot our lives once again and it kills me. I am not ready to leave yet.
I am still torn and wondering if we have made the right decision.
This has been a roller coaster of a year and I feel like I am plummeting to the end.
I am completely heartbroken and disappointed :*(

Friday, March 25, 2011

Art is My Meditation

Life here in Bahrain has not been very enjoyable lately. Due to protests and violence we have basically been on lock down. We have been advised to stay home and stay away from any 'activity.' Since I am not sure what I am allowed to say I have not been online much and I have to keep many thoughts to myself when I am online. I hate having to censor myself in this way, but our safety is more important than my opinion.

The upside to being couped up in my house is that I have had a good bit of time for arting :)I spend hours playing with paint, collage, stamps and gel medium.

Art is my meditation. My brain slows down,I am able to relax and I just lose myself in the process.

Art journaling has given me so much more than I ever could have expected. I never thought I would learn so much about who I am. I never thought I would heal so many wounds or experience so much forgiveness. My eyes and my heart are open and I am changing. I am learning to fogive myself for things that I have done, but more importanly, for things that I had no control over. I am learning to accept myself and love myself and I never thought that was possible.

My skills improve with every page and my creativity is really starting to blossom. I find myself thinking of new ideas all through out the day and I have several projects in mind for the coming months. The first of those projects is an altered book that I will begin working on today. It will be a tribute book using several techniques that are new to me. I will post pics to share my progress.

I also got an email with some VERY exciting art news, but I have to wait a few more days before I can share that secret.

On a side note,I have finally linked my blog to my Flickr account. Now all of my images can be viewed in one convenient spot :D

Now, I am off to work on my altered book!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Discovering My Truth

It has been MONTHS since I last blogged and so much has happened!

Since moving to Bahrain I have had very little time for arting, much less blogging. Not for lack of desire, but lack of time.

Short recap...

As soon as I arrived in Bahrain, we were on the hunt for a new flat. The apartment was great, but it was not quite big enough and walking the dogs five times a day was a bit of a hassle.

Once we found our villa we started packing and preparing to move. The week we moved we also had car repairs, move out cleaning and inspections, new home shopping AND move in cleaning and unpacking to do. On top of all of that, I am home schooling Christopher for the first time which in its self is a full time job!


I was so busy, but I still felt like I was forgetting something. Then it hit me...I was missing my art. I missed sitting down and just losing myself in the page. I have discovered that I NEED that. I didn't think I needed art, but the truth is... I do. I need art.

I have been working with truth alot this week. I am a member of the wild precious ning site (see link below) and one of the workshops I am currently involved in is called "The Truth Project." This workshop is all about discovering *your truth* on many different levels.

We are just finishing week one and I cannot believe how intense this first week was. I cried, I recoiled and I tried to run away from the deep issues that rushed to the surface. I did not want to answer the questions that were posed and I had no intention of sharing my dark side. Then about half way through the week I had a break through. I decided to open up, be honest with the group and more importantly, with myself. I did show my dark side, I did talk about painful subjects and I started looking for my truth. To be honest, I had NO idea what my truth was.

I started turning my 'blurts' into affirmations and I have been working diligently to silence my inner critic.

The prompt for the week was to art your truth. I wasn't exactly sure what I wanted to do, but I did have the spark of a vision. When I first started the page I was so unhappy with it and I had to just let it sit. I felt like I needed to make it 'perfect.' I felt like it needed to be... more. I let it sit for two days before I went back to work on it again. When I started working on it again, I could see it slowly coming together and I knew it was right. It was perfect for me. It was my truth.

My truth is I have an extremely distorted view of myself. It's like I have on self hatred goggles. The truth is I need to take these goggles off. I need to see myself as I truly am and love what I see, no matter what.

If you are interested in discovering your truth, art journaling, poetry or any other form of artistic expression check out