Wednesday, February 28, 2007

What would you use this for?

Drawn in Painter IX

Today my artist date involved making some art - my inner artist wanted a toy vacuum cleaner picture and not one like any toy vacuum I've ever seen... so of course I let her draw it herself. Her interest ran out when it came to colouring in.

I won't be on my computer much for the next few days - I'll still be doing my morning pages etc. I'll catch up with you all when I'm back on line next week.

This section is about healing - if you don't believe / use healing just skip the rest of this posting please!

This morning I woke up from a dream where I'd been doing some healing knowing I needed to tell the person I was healing to:

Stay out of other people's minds

Now I don't know who I was working on in my sleep... but I'm pretty sure its someone who reads my blog!

I'd send this in an email if I knew who it was for, as it is I'll have to broadcast it rather wider than I would normally.

To make it more broadly useful I thought it might be helpful to swap ideas for how to cleanse and stay well-grounded in reality, in one's own body. I'd love to hear your suggestions in the comments. Being well-grounded is useful to all of us whether we send healing or not.

Here are some things I do:
  • Salt water baths - both cleansing and protective
  • Walking barefoot
  • When washing in the morning, doing so with the intention of cleansing myself of all the night's processing of emotions
  • Doing a yoga forward bend and visualising the energy flows as I do it
  • Cleaning crystals, especially those used for protection
Something else that really helps is to only ever send healing to someone if you have energy permission from their energy system to do so (preferably also their conscious permission). If you don't know how to check for energy permission then don't send anything. This includes Reiki.

I have, in the past, had to defend myself from well-meant but inappropriate Reiki energy sent to me without either conscious or energy permission being given. I'm a Reiki master so I do know what this feels like. (Although a Reiki & Seichem master I am not attuning others at the moment; that is something I currently do not have energy permission to do.)

I know some Reiki masters say its okay to send to anyone - this is not so - you only need to know how to check to find this out.

Not every energy system gives permission when asked; sometimes this is temporary and at other times permanent. Respect this.

And if your Reiki master cannot tell you how to check for energy permission ask for your money back! (And follow the link I give at the end.)

When you are sending you are opening a stream from the healing source that passes through you and to the other person. This is an invitation for energy to flow. There are several things that can happen.
  • It can all go smoothly and wonderfully and this is what normally happens.
  • Nothing flows at all. This can be disappointing but is usually safe.
  • The other person can send you energy back - this too can be wonderful but may not be. Be careful what you accept.
  • Some people's energy systems are too eager and will grab more from you than you are anticipating. If this happens to you - cut the connection as quickly as possible. Then cleanse and ground.
This last is what I think had happened to the person I was helping in dream last night.

And the reason they need to stay out of other people's minds is because they are too empathic; they need more distance, more detachment and will actually be able to give more with that detachment in place. Hence the advice to get grounded in one's own body.

If you've been sending healing and are feeling totally drained then you need to cleanse and ground and not send to that person again.

The problems are rarely mentioned because they are relatively rare and New Age gurus are rather inclined to only talk about the good side... but ignoring the dark doesn't make it go away... and can leave you not knowing what to do when it happens... most masters do talk about protection and this is one of the things you are attempting to protect from.

If you are frightened by any of this then heal yourself rather than sending to others - its just as much a gift to the world! (Your own energy system will appreciate it if you check for energy permission before self-healing and it is good practice.)

As I mentioned I do send healing when I'm in dream, but I've also noticed that even then I check for permission.

I check for energy permission by first self-cleansing, getting balanced and then using kinesiology self-test. I learnt this when studying Health Kinesiology. You can learn a similar method on these webpages by Machaelle Small Wright of Perelandra essences.

And in the past I gave these methods for improving balance and reducing stress.

So given all this talk about cleansing...

What would you use all those nozzles for?

See you all soon!

Tuesday, February 27, 2007


Curtain - Painter IX

This week in FW is called Uncovering a Sense of Reality. I couldn't find my book to read about it on Saturday but it re-appeared on Sunday. And having sat down and read the chapter I realised I needed to alter most of the exercises to suit me. They are too word-oriented for me. I need to do them in pictures.

Working with SoulCollage®, as I have been since the end of last year, is a great way to do them. For instance the suggestion that one falls in love with oneself, I find that much easier through making cards that depict me rather than by writing words. Sometimes the words do come later. But pictures speak louder than words to me. For instance I already have cards called such things as:
  1. She who lives in the city
  2. Beautiful me
  3. Book Lover
  4. Night Dreamer
  5. The Gardener
I'd love to show them to you but I feel that it is breaking copyright to blog collages cut from magazines, etc. so despite the value of the pictures I'm only giving you their titles.

Now, using the five small actions diving rod, here is a list of cards for me to make:
  1. She who loves to be alive and present now
  2. She who prefers silence to noise
  3. She who sings to herself
  4. She who has the time to be herself
  5. She who makes pictures to show herself to herself
I've no idea yet how these will happen but I trust they will. And if they don't something else worthwhile will appear.

Quite a few cards start off as one thing and end up as something else - for instance I was doing one about my working self from my 20's - I'd started off thinking of it as something like She who stood up to her bosses - but it ended up with the title: Worker - Unmanageable. And I felt compassion for the people who had tried to direct the firecracker I then was - this was very healing for me, I forgave them in that moment.

One of the exercises this week is to make a picture of the critic or censor. I did this as a SoulCollage® card a while ago.

It called itself Boo-er and my picture depicted a brain sitting on a settee - now I don't need to reduce this down to size, but redirect it, engage it. I now love this part of me too. I feel that Julia Cameron is still at war with her inner critic rather than embracing it, loving it and re-directing it. I prefer this second option.

For more about SoulCollage® see the
Or have a reading.

The last exercise in the book requires a date with a friend and ends with asking them for spiritual help too... what I'd like from all of you is to wish me luck, please!

And I wish you luck too.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Artist Date and Morning Pages

Flower painted in Painter using a Sumi-e blossom brush

Yesterday I took my artist date for this week. For some reason I'd not really been looking forward to them in general - I think I'd got into a rut - stopped being inventive enough and I was fooling myself that just because I spend so much time alone I didn't actually need a date with myself to look forward to - it was reading that phrase in Finding Water that clued me in to where I was going wrong.

So before going to sleep on Tuesday night I decided to take my date the next afternoon and see what the local shops looked like with fresh eyes... so I borrowed Jim's camera which is compact and went out to see. This was also partly inspired by having wished I'd got a picture of the elephant to show you from Tuesday's list - so here it is:

This pub is covered in rather strange butterflies, presumably inspired by its name:

In the toy shop children are being tempted with this enticing promise - to fly!

And one of the charity shops has this unhappy animal in its window:

Look closely at its label and you will see the poor thing is only a standard tiger:

One of the outcomes of taking my inner artist child to the shops though is that she gets a bit keen on buying toys... in another of the charity shops I bought all these for a total of £3.30. The volunteer at the counter said she had only just put most of them out:

The four bugs are a bee, butterfly, wasp and ladybird; plus there is a little cow and a gosling.

So my inner artist child came back very happy!

This morning I woke up from a strange dream about morning pages. A man who is a friend of a friend, not someone I know well, was in the dream and he was complaining vociferously about having to write morning pages - in fact he was being very eloquent on the matter so I suggested that instead of mouthing off about them he wrote it all down in them... but instead he turned into two children - his inner shaman (he is an apprentice shaman) and his inner child - and we collected up all the soft toys in the dream to make a totem pole!
In my dream it was possible to get them to all sit on top of each other vertically but of course here I just got them to lie down in a line...

Five (more!) lovely things:
  1. I looked in Cotswold Life magazine and fell in love with a house... worth three times what we could currently afford but the stuff that dreams are made of!
  2. I put on a new CD and danced to a couple of tracks for the first time in ages.
  3. I had a lovely bath with my favourite rose scented body wash... mmm...
  4. I heard from a friend who had been away for 3 months - it was great to know she'd returned and was in one piece - it was also a surprise as I thought she wouldn't be back until Saturday.
  5. My valentine roses are still going strong and looking gorgeous.
Hope your week has been going well!

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Names and Things

Jo has suggested a new tag. Its to make a Namelian using your own name (any variant is allowed). See her post for the full details. This came from an idea she got from Steve's post on Namelians where you can also go to get the instructions.

As its a tag I'm tagging JohnnyNorms (instead of those beans!), Ian (sorry about the double tag for weird things), Tinker (again sorry for pushing for more weirdness last time... this must be easier!), Susie (its a fun change from photography!), Joy Eliz (I thought you might like to be asked...), Melba (because you said you like being tagged) and Andrea (just in case you want something to play with for a change, and to entice you back to your blog!).

And since I'm in the mood for such things I'm tagging myself to post 5 lovely things in each posting throughout Finding Water.... this is derived from one of the exercises for week one where Julia Cameron suggests at the end of each day we write down 5 things we've seen that visually delighted us. I'd prefer to broaden this to 5 things that delighted me, whether visually or some other way. Here are yesterday's:
  1. One of the regular helpers in Amnesty remarked that I always seem so happy that I must be doing something right! (A good counter to any lack of optimism shown here lately!)
  2. A man in the supermarket came and stood beside me as I looked at the chocolate display - we ended up discussing chocolate and he told me that the 85%+ stuff is especially good for you as its so full of flavinoids etc. He said there is somewhere in Bristol, but he couldn't remember where, that you can get 90% cocoa solids but that its something you really can only eat a tiny bit at a time. I decided he was my chocolate angel! :-)
  3. Sheer joy at finally posting all the things I'd meant to post for ages. Three parcels - yes! (Good job I'm not selling things on Amazon at the moment...)
  4. Noticing that one of my local shops has an elephant on its sign!
  5. Finally finding the plastic bottle recyling bank - I actually skipped like a six year old as I went over to "deposit" my plastic bottles. I've no idea why but it made me really happy.
Tell me some of your happy things!

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Finding Water - Optimism

A doodle in Painter

Today is the start of working with this book, Finding Water: The Art of Perseverance by Julia Cameron. Alongside other bloggers at the Finding Water blog.

The theme for the first week is Optimism. Its always good to have a bit of a boost!

So as a measure of where I am now I tried a few tests... and I got really mixed results! From somewhat pessimistic on one test to total and complete optimist on another. I don't think I'm going to pay any attention to such tests - life is too much fun without fretting over whether I rate as an optimist or not!! You see I know, in my heart of hearts that I am, except when I'm not, its that simple.

I think I may almost be SoulCollage®d out. I've got over 200 cards now - though not all are backed - they'll be a bit heavy to cart around if I back all of them on mount board...

Every morning I select a card of the day and somedays I also do a reading with them. One particular sort of reading I've started to do has this general pattern:

You shuffle and cut and come up with the first card - put that face up in position one. Then with it in mind, shuffle and cut again putting out the other five cards face down until you've got them all.

And here is a made-up example using images that I've already published:

1. Past - Shadow: UnNamed One

In shadow, I am one who has no idea where I'm going, is unable to see what I'll become. This is okay and I have no name.

2. Physical - Shadow: Wren

In shadow, I am one who has made this reading up but will find that there is a message in it for me anyway. (Wren's are cunning creatures according to celtic lore).

3. Other - Shadow - Death

In shadow, I am one who will ensure that all that needs to end will end, so you may as well surrender to the change - it will be easier in the end.

4. Other - Light - My father

I am one who reminds you that you felt my passing. You and your siblings were not present in the same room but you all felt it and knew (and so did the dog).

5. Physical - Light - HK inspired distance healer

I am one who sends distance healing using very focused energies. I am one who is called to do this now and will do more when asked.

6. Present - Light - Can't see the wood for the leaves

I am one who sees a tree by examining it in detail and getting to know every leaf. Once I know a tree this well I do not need to re-examine it the same way again, I may return to it or I may not - that depends on what new ways I have of examining it. Some people say its better to specialise and stick to one thing, especially when you've got to know it so well; I say I know its part of my way to plunge in, do all I can and then move on. Nothing is wasted.

Today a book I'd ordered recently turned up. Barbara Sher calls such non-specialists scanners, I've always considered myself a Renaissance Woman - but if I wasn't already confident in being someone who must wear many hats to be happy then I might have appreciated the label of Scanner.

The subtitle to Finding Water is "The art of perseverance" - I hope I'm not going to find too much of a contradiction with my natural need to change hats.

How many hats do you have?

How many do you wear at once?

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine's Day

This is my SoulCollage® card for my father. The words are here in my card blog. It came up two days ago and today as my card of the day. What a lovely Valentine's greeting.

I've blogged about my father before: main posting and follow-up.

Jim has surprised me with chocolates and a card (luckily I surprised him with chocolates and a card too!). And we have a date for tonight.

Happy Valentine's Day to all of you!

Update: Jim surprised himself by forgetting to give me these roses until just now! And "Finding Water" (but he had told me it was here... so I wasn't worrying).

Valentines 2007

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Review of Elephant

This is an elephant teapot cosy. As I no longer drink tea you could consider this a white elephant - well you could if it was actually valuable! I noticed that we have a tea towel with similar stripes in it as the cosy so I added that into the background.

I tried to get my statue of the Buddha to pose with the cosy on his head, as a hat, but it was too large and made him look more like Ganesh...

So where did this week go?

Well I started off happily posting elephants etc. but then on Thursday we got a call from our builders to say that they'd had an unexpected cancellation and could they come to us on Monday?

As they wanted both one bedroom and the dining room completely empty this meant a great many things to be moved and temporary arrangements to be made, especially as they'd lead me to believe we wouldn't have access to the kitchen!

We could have done with an elephant to carry things for us.

As it is we do still have access to the kitchen... so I'm considering the fact we moved so much stuff out an invitation to spring clean before it all gets put back.

So I've been busy doing things other than blogging, but I have been reading and answering my email. One thread has been about animal totems. We'd got to a point where 4 animals had been identified, one of which was common to both of us - Coyote.

On Sunday I related how I'd found a coyote soft toy about 5 years or so ago.
I was in a charity shop looking at teddy bears for my recently born niece and the volunteer in there said what about this one, holding up a rather odd looking soft toy - it needs a good home - and I said "what is it?" she said "Roadrunner!" (it wasn't a bird) eventually it turned out to be the Coyote from the cartoon Roadrunner...
This is the coyote I got at that time:

Today this is what happened:
I was out at my local shops and noticed several children carrying soft toys - I don't mean that this is unusual but I was particularly drawn to the fact. Even to the extent where I ended up talking to a stranger in the local coffee shop to find out what type of animal it was that her baby had (that one was a monkey).

I carried on and did my shopping and then as I passed a charity shop (we have loads locally) I noticed how many ordinary teddy bears they had in their window - so I went in.

I went straight to their soft toy section and found... a coyote!

I took it to the counter and said "Who's this?"

And she said "Road Runner!"

I said "No, its not."

"Oh its Wily Coyote" she said.

This was a different shop and different woman from the time before. Its also a slightly different make from mine.
Here is today's Coyote:

I have, of course, offered him to my email correspondent.

On Saturday I'll be joining in with the Finding Water group so my weeks will have names from Julia Cameron once more. Until then I'm considering myself as having a Spring Clean. (Though if any elephants are involved it will probably be more like a Sprinkling...)

Any tips on Spring Cleaning?

Update: The coyotes decided to sit on three volumes of "The World of Children" to pose for you together:

Two coyotes

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Tagged: 6 weird things

An elephant candlestick given to me by my sister

I've been tagged by Larry Lee (via Illustration Friday!)


People who are tagged should write a blog post of 6 weird things about themselves as well as state this rule clearly.

In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names.

Don't forget to leave a comment that says "you are tagged" in their comments and tell them to read your blog.

Six weird things about me:
  1. I used to have a set of satin, embroidered elephants called: Helium, Neon, Argon, Krypton, Xenon, Radon. I used to introduce people to them.

  2. The other named elephant I had was a painted wooden one called Mozambique. I'd introduce him too.

  3. I can't find these elephants to post pictures of them!

  4. When watching the BBC's Planet Earth what upset me most was seeing the little elephant going the wrong way - following the tracks of its mother away from her and the rest of the herd - and therefore to certain death.

  5. I had a friend at university who promised me he'd buy me an elephant when he was a millionaire. I got an email last year saying he owed me an elephant!

  6. When mentioning elephants yesterday I forgot the gorgeous one that Tinker did recently.
Six people to tag: Tinker, Suzie Q, Jo, Ian, CMS, Macaroni Penguins

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Week - Elephant

Elephant - various brushes and effects used in Painter IX on a photograph of a metal elephant given to me by one of my brothers.

The word for this week is Elephant. A nice concrete word that its easy to do images for so maybe a rich seam for blogging. It is also the animal companion that has come up, following the SoulCollage® process for my sacral chakra. I've yet to blog my elephant companion card so maybe that will happen this week too.

I've been aware that Isay has been doing elephants recently, for instance this fun one from a couple of weeks ago.

The first blog I looked at this morning rather confirmed that Elephant was the right word - Leah relates a story of synchronicity that fits with this really well and invovles 3 elephants.

This morning I got a book I'd ordered recently: Sacred Contracts: Awakening Your Divine Potential by Caroline Myss and just for fun I put on the radio briefly to see if it had a comment on this - the words I got were "top level education" and in looking for a clip to reference this with I find that it was in a slot on the Radio 4's Today programme about the key to living in a safe and pleasant environment (audio clip).

More elephants soon!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Review Turbulence / Quest

Cinderella dancing with her broomstick - Painter IX based on a photo of a ballerina.

The whole week was definitely one of turbulence... my quest to find my soul essence card may have been completed or maybe not... I'm just not sure... its close... but is it really me? Well I'm not showing it anyway!

And so onto Cinderella...

One of the types of cards that I've been making are story cards.

I've done Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Snow White.

Sleeping Beauty and Snow White are both all too relevant to someone who has had M.E. and spent half her life asleep... but what has Cinderella to tell me?

Here, in no particular order, are some of my associations with the story:
  • Cinderella dances with a broomstick and calls up a magic helper - but no-one calls her a witch

  • In British Pantomime both Cinders and the Prince are played by young women - is their final union a symbol for both the feminine and masculine sides of a woman becoming one?

  • Does "Happy Ever After" mean enlightenment? Or, as in the Terry Pratchett book, Thud!, endarkenment?

  • How could only Cinderella's foot be the only one to fit the shoe - I've always thought the Prince was lucky not to end up betrothed to a four year old...

  • Jane Austen's Mansfield Park (or if you have no Austen consider this set - I've got it and love it - Jane Austen 6-book Boxed Set) is a clear Cinderella story - I've always thought it funny that Sir Thomas gets to be the Fairy Godmother as he provides the white dress and carriage... a little sexual role reversal worked in and only apparent if you see the connection... and of course Prince Charming (Henry Crawford described as "though not handsome, had air and countenance") turns out to be unworthy of her and she ends up marrying her cousin instead which is also a good twist if you are reading it as Cinderella; Edmund Bertram is more like Buttons in the pantomime and I always feel sorry for kind, helpful Buttons.

  • On a more personal note, as a teenager I went to London, with a friend and her mother, to see Twiggy in Cinderella but Twiggy wasn't on that day so we saw her understudy and felt cheated!
Words for this card are on my card blog.

This review is a bit late in being published - I started writing it yesterday but only posted it today (Wednesday)... blame it on the turbulence.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

IF - Sprout

Watercolour and pencil of Potatoes Chitting - sorry the photo is a little off centre but it was hard to avoid reflections - this is one of the few pictures of mine that's framed - probably dates from the 1980s.

What week is it?

On Wednesday I got that the word for the week was "Turbulance" but not to post it. When there is turbulance its hard to know exactly where one is going... though if you've got enough momentum up before you hit it there's a good chance you'll still be travelling in the right direction....

Then yesterday I got an update and that the word was now "Quest".

All my dreams recently have been about my cards. I wake up having been shuffling them and looking at them all night long.

I've got rather a lot now... 78 are backed on card and another 70 or so printed out and ready to be backed. I was in a frenzy of making them until yesterday when suddenly I felt the pressure had stopped. Now it is time to look at them. And this morning I figured out what the quest was for... its for what my own essence is... the essential me... if I had to make a single card that represented me what it would be. So I'm looking at what I've got and trying to see where this leads me.

A card that was crucial in getting here was one I started off calling "Can't see the wood for the trees". I started off with a dense evergreen forest. I then added leaf after leaf until I'd covered it up and there was no forest showing. So now this card is called "Can't see the wood for the leaves". And yes I know that the number of cards I've made is excessive... but a tree has many leaves.

See the words for it on my card blog.

I'm currently reading S Is for Silence which is the last of the Kinsey Millhone books available - I've been really enjoying my re-read of the series and then the two that I'd not read before R and S. Maybe I'll need a bit of time off from fiction after this marathon!

I've ordered the most recent Julia Cameron book Finding Water: The Art of Perseverance and am planning on joining Leah et al in going through it starting in 2 weeks on Saturday February 17th.

Are you planning on joining in too?

Update: The place to go to join in is Finding Water