A Breath of Fresh Air


#10DBC, #freedomplan


September 17, 2016

Day 8: Choosing Your Adventure

My Mission, if I chose to accept it, was to go out, have some fun and do something I’ve been longing to do.

Well, there wasn’t much wiggle room with my time and energy to add to my already planned day. If I wasn’t a sleep deprived person I might’ve made it out prior to my scheduled art critique. Originally, if I had caught up on rest, I had hoped to get downtown earlier to see a specific art exhibit before it closes soon and/or walk through the doors of the new community-driven independent bookstore that’s been here about a year. No such luck. With writing this blog, being busy and needing a break, I found myself still juggling my sleep need to be a higher priority, pulling myself back from this edge to better care for my body, mind and soul. I’ve just been a real mess and need to take back control. Any really great sleep and rest itself feels like this incredible date of something I long for, believe me!

For me, discovering the existence of this recently formed group activity was a godsend. Art Critique Day is a major lifeline for me to receive feedback and not create in a vacuum. I’ve missed this activity so much more than I realized since college. The benefits I have received are priceless. There is a camaraderie of spirit that extends personally and professionally. The facilitator of the group is an exceptional individual with a huge heart and inspiring creative artist. So for me, I enjoy this process immensely. I have been a participant in this group for four months so far and it has been a phenomenal experience of growth helping me embrace my strengths and fulfill my niche interests. Today an artist friend I have not seen much of in a really long time was the guest artist leading the critique and I was super excited! It was a wonderful treat to see her again.

I did ask about a new art show next door on the campus as I have of a previous show. I didn’t realize the opening was on a night a few weeks ago when I did go down for another and spontaneously hung out at three other galleries I wasn’t aware of being open. One was closed in a beauty salon yet I was given a spontaneous showing by the artist herself. It was so much fun! I love that sort of  synchronicity. Our group leader offered to let us in to see the show in the mayor’s gallery since we finished early. This experience felt like total freedom! (See the photos of me during my crit and inside the art exhibit.)

Often I go alone to see a show and am able to appreciate the art at my pace, though I at times in those moments wish to share the experience with others I know. Occasionally there is dialogue about a piece with strangers. We didn’t have long and I wish we had more time. I was the last one racing out of there. I took some photos of me with a few art pieces by artists I know personally and one I am trying to meet soon in person who I know from Facebook. Social media has also been a lifesaver for me during a lengthy season of life where I could not be present and involved I could still be lingering in communication loops and aware of events and happenings local, regional, national and global. It’s a different view being more homebound and at a distance even so close to all the local activity. I’m a social butterfly so this has not been easy to deal with and maneuver.

Usually I am one to go to all sorts of art events and openings, however in the past several years I’ve been and am just drowning in my health and personal issues and my parents needs that this state of overwhelm was and is too much to bear alone and being social can be too much on top of it all. It’s sometimes hard to stay afloat and on top of it all that downtime in bed watching DVD’s is a guaranteed good time without any possible kerfluffles with others that misread or misinterpret who and where you are in life and heart. No matter where one goes, dealing with people is a must. For me, people whether they are friends, loved ones, colleagues or strangers I meet once are all treats I experience and do my utmost in those moments of interaction to be present with them as individuals. Maybe some chemistry is better between certain energies than others one thinks she ought to feel easier with though doesn’t is a sign to let it go and stay on the frequency to focus on those who share in good vibrations solely.

Empathy is key and not everyone attuned to giving it as much as they want to receive it. Reciprocity goes hand in hand with empathy. Whatever our life’s circumstances, throw a lifeline to others who are drowning no matter what. Maybe others can handle it all well. However, maybe some people need to stop and realize that perhaps there are dynamics and logistics involved that they are unaware of, couldn’t possibly understand due to a varying history and relational dynamics, yet from their perspective they categorize all that life overwhelm as one lump when there are many and choose to judge an individual without privately and truthfully getting to know that person and her state of affairs from her life station. Also, it seems to me others want empathy or attentiveness for whatever is on their mind, but don’t share what’s going on and in an attuned, mutual way. I have been and am guilty of this in various ways. I am not a mind reader. (Neither are you or any others unless it is your superpower). I can’t play guessing games. Let’s communicate more directly, clearly and one-on-one to get to know one another so we can offer appropriate, kind, helpful not hurtful loving support.

So it’s much simpler to stay put especially without a car and being a woman who feels extra vulnerable on buses at night when art openings tend to take place. Presently I am driving my dad’s car so I am more mobile and able to plan very focused outings for those resounding yeses in my life for where I truly wish to be and what I want in life. On one side I could say I missed so much, yet on the other hand I have gained new insights into who I honestly am and opened up possibilities I never would’ve continuing to run around all the time not wanting to miss out on things outside of myself that all that time in some ways I was missing out on me. Staying put for a length of time was something I had deep down longed for but didn’t feel was appropriate or possible. I continue to have mixed feelings about it though the pulls to help family has been in the mix and necessary, too.

The extra bonus seeing that aesthetics art show was a fun, spontaneous and unexpected thing that was a breath of fresh air. I felt so free! It felt as if I was inhaling ocean air with spectacular negative ions. It has been over nine years since I have been landlocked and seen an ocean, mainly the Pacific. Funny thing is my address includes pacific in the street. Lol. I’ve always gone to the ocean to think, wonder, sort things out and to feel the presence of a great mystery more readily available than anything else. Chasing sunsets and finding the highest ground for viewing on a daily basis was another thing I used to do. If I had a different car or situation not dependent on this car for urban use helping others dependent on me, I would ritually drive out to the local mountain areas to sit and view and join hiking groups. I will join in hikes once I feel better and stronger from my latest injury as the weather cools and I find meet ups that sound good for starting at the beginning again. Slow and steady.

How can I make this kind of fun and adventure a part of my (new) lifestyle?

I would not say this is a NEW lifestyle. Attending art shows, events and activities were a part of my life for so long. The one main element that assists me now is that transportation piece. I had tried without much luck to see if I could share this car previously and carpool sometimes downtown from my area as there are a ton of artists, writers and creatives nearby. So I am getting out and reintroducing myself and if the time comes I am without wheels again maybe carpools will be available or I will just get out in the daylight by bus, though it becomes more challenging in winter with less light and then in summer with such high heat. (The bus system, as far as I know, does not get one downtown quickly even though it is close and a short car ride).

Maybe I did not yet do this assignment properly? It was a bit of a surprise. To actually do what I long to do would take maybe more money, planning, physical strength, time, energy and I would prefer camaraderie. I tend to be out alone more than I wish and have longed to rectify this situation without simply landing into community spaces for connection and plan different types of adventurous outings with a circle of friends and extended personal circles.

Often I can be spontaneous although I also can require time to process things to sink in for my authentic response without being spoon fed what others expect of me. This links to my blog about going into the uncertain, the unexpected and living on my own terms, at my own pace, in my rhythm. This matters to me. Without others volunteering me for things they want from me. Sidestepping maneuvering, manipulation, political squabbles, cattiness, time wasters. Without care of others judgment. As long as I can look myself in the mirror, then I’m golden. If only saying yes when it is a resounding yes from deep within, even when I hear my lips shout out yes before my mind catches up, I am good. Expectations can create huge problems.

I just want to feel and be free. I want to feel aliveness. I want deep bonds with others and nature. I want to travel and experience cultures, a richness of people and places, and go to the edges of the world in natural remote wondrous wilds. I want to ponder the great mysteries of life, natural wonders and the universe in all its glory with the grandeur of questions even if left unanswered. And for all of this experience and adventure to reflect in my art, writing and creative expressions during, after and beyond my travels and research and merge into me at my core beingness so I can walk more lightly in life and on this earth.

Truthfully, I don’t know what adventure to choose for this assignment that would be true to catapult me into the life I desire that is within my current limits. The number one thing that pops into my head is that skydiving from the ground experience that is local but I can’t recall the actual name of it. And zip line. Again, there are one or two local like rides in the urban area, and I think one local in the mountains. I need money and to feel stronger in my body to feel I could handle it. Then there is the whole courage thing to actually DO something I think I want in terms of adventure, travel and life experiences to speak from and move forward within a new station of life touched by this profound life shifting view.

There are some local places I could visit that I’ve wanted to go to. If I go to local higher end galleries that would reflect my desire to travel to major museums and galleries of the world. We don’t really have major art museums here where I am now, not like I am used to in Los Angeles or San Francisco. Metropolitan areas feel like an amusement park of museums, galleries and a multitude of creative activity.

Aside from these things, what is it that I long to do that I can go out and do? A few months ago I finally signed up for unlimited monthly  yoga that mine and my parents needs have not allowed me to be regular with. I keep trying to get back with it and I torqued my pelvis and sacrum the last time in mid August so it’s been about a month going unused. This also happened last November and was partially resolved beginning in January. I was told to not exert myself and be careful with my low back but kept reinjurying myself catering to my dad’s needs and wishes hopping between rehab to rehab since his accident. I miss yoga and have no space in the home to do it well and it has felt awesome to go the bunch of times I have. I need more chiropractic adjustments as I am still in pain in my low back and causing additional discomforts internally I just don’t know what to do about it yet. Maybe this fits the assignment if it was the exact day I planned to sign up.

To choose a spontaneous adventure for the day is great if one has no plans and depends on where you are and other logistics. I guess it could be the smallest thing. That’s just it, I long to have fun, any kind of fun to enjoy. It feels as if it has been so long since I have experienced simple joys of life consistently within a natural flow that feels more effortless.  I feel things have been dumped on my lap I am now responsible for by default. Sometimes it just all feels so darn hard because I am caught up within these narrow worlds of my folks and how they are that the simplest things at times require a lot of energy and it can be all encompassing that to try is exhausting. It’s work to reach those spaces of joy and connection within these bounds and others sense of being that may not round the clock match my own. Does this make sense?

Basically, I’m just a girl who wants to have fun, though has lost herself in the craziness of life and looking to find her fun groove again! The things I think are fun are missing an intimate and personal meaning for me. Not that it has to be complicated or that I am making it more complicated, I just don’t know what to do! Last month there was a free concert I wanted to go to and gave last minute notice to see if I could round up a group. No one could make it on less than two days notice and a lot were tired and wanted to go home, which I totally get. I didn’t feel safe going alone downtown to this specific location by myself. I was upset for a short bit with myself, shed some tears in the car for things not aligning on the one night in ages I felt so free and ready to go out for fun and a little misadventure. If it were another location, even downtown, I likely would’ve gone alone, maybe met new people. It’s easier to meet others one on one in more intimate settings than a big open concert when even among the many one can feel totally alone. That’s a time you just want to hang out with your friends. And I’ve gone through what I call a social hiccup in my life too detailed to explain.

Maybe some sense of it has come through in my writings. If I can find a coffeehouse with poetry readings and acoustic music, that will be a reintegration of something missing in my life. I would love to go see a live theater show, a cirque show, anything. I could afford local community theater so I will look into that. Ding ding ding…I could create solo photo shoots and sometimes join in on the local group night and other shoots when that aligns. I have a ton of ideas. Even if I thought of this earlier I didn’t have much energy or time. I did turn the art exhibit into a mini photo shoot so that counts for something. I did venture out the other month to the closing of an art show and venue by myself near the concert area I was skittish about going alone as mentioned above. This was a different scenario with the venue, parking, event type and crowd. I was so snap happy inspired taking a ton of photos especially of this one paper shapes installation. I was allowed to stay after closing for about an hour to complete my tour and take my time. It was amazing! I get that way outdoors and turn it into a photography adventure. Or anywhere that captivates my attention and feeds my creative soul. This helps for reference or memory to inspire my art making and creative process.  At the critique I  asked the facilitator to take pictures of me during my crit. This documentation helped me to concretely witness my actions in motion and my growing visibility. Wow, sure is a deep growth process I am going through during Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 8 !

There just isn’t the time, energy and resources to make things happen the way I want or think I want though maybe don’t really want which is getting confusing for me in this moment. Here I am again. Starting over from scratch in life, reinventing myself, with plenty of uncertainty I could build a ladder to the moon and I’d still have farther to climb. I seek a higher road and ground of synchronicities. To get back there where I have been I have to get through to the other side of this tunnel I am still in, seeking light through the darkness. It’s going to take some major action that is unclear to me now what to do. So I just keep moving.



Artistic Freedom


Day 6: Finding Your Tribe

The Assignment

Choose two people I admire who are alive and living the kind of life I want to live. Write about something that inspires me about each person. If I met them in person, what burning question would I ask each one.

Today I am selecting two visual artists who seem to have it totally together, are visible in the global community and offer a seamless spectrum of creative treats across the online universe and in real life . Each has made a name for herself in the visual art and creativity fields. And they are women artists I relate to on a multitude of levels.

Equally I am a writer, however I chose only two artists. The reason I did this is twofold. First, I strongly feel that by building a welcoming environment that is visually enticing and a placemaker invites and nourishes the creative soul in all its expressions as a home base beyond a typical office space. Second, this haven serves as a launching point of departure of freedom for the writing mind to loosen up, unravel, daydream, explore, investigate, blueprint and evolve ideas, poems and stories into books for readers alongside the visual process of the artist with potential to integrate these two forms and feed off one another for endless inspiration. I could easily select two writers I admire. Let’s make it a wondrous dream team! And yes, all women. These celebrated fiction authors captivate readers with magical realism, sci fi, intense imagination and the fantastical. The memoir writers are exquisite storytellers who bring their relatable interior worlds to life. Though I will only list names and complete this exercise in private for now, I might share this later on. They are:

Geraldine Brooks, Margaret Atwood, Ursula Le Guin, Clarissa Pinkola Estes, J.K. Rowling, Audrey Niffenegger, Erin Morgenstern, Ann Patchett, Elizabeth Gilbert, Jeannette Walls, Cheryl Strayed, Julie Powell, Gretchen Rubin, Suzanne Collins, Stephenie Meyer, Emma Donoghue, Lois Lowry, Diablo Cody, Lena Dunham.

Poets: Mary Oliver, Sharon Olds, Naomi Shihab Nye, Yoko Ono.

Flora Bowley

Flora’s painting is so free, expressive, unique, colorful, bold, and BIG! Her imagery feels like a wilderness of deep spirit. She has reinvented herself as I discovered in checking her website. She offers self-paced online courses, retreat-style workshops in-person, a studio diary, books, and videos of her painting based on her brave, intuitive painting. Also, she sells her original, vibrant paintings and giclee prints across several sites.  Flora has her own tribe with community of support. A main motivation for her is to create with soulful, wild abandon. A lot of her work feels and reflects the natural world. Her offerings have evolved into her “bloom true” brand with lifestyle products I wish to evolve to as well. Wandering her website feels refreshing as if delving into a hidden world of whimsical beauty. Her essential foundation of values match mine on the creativity and the artful journey as a means for self-care.



Flora, what would you say resonated for you in the actions you took at various pivotal junctures that lifted your artistic and creative path to new heights professionally and personally, evolving into who and where you are today and your future opportunities, and please describe them in detail?

Carla Sonheim

Carla’s illustrative world is humorous, inventive, quirky, relatable, confident, and joyous. One can see her zest for life! Her playful nature is definitely contagious. She offers a bunch of free stuff I just discovered in tutorials and drawing assignments on her website I am excited to explore. Also, she has produced a ton of YouTube classes and videos. More amazing goodies to enjoy!  I relate to her walking the line between drawing and painting  with a whimsical style inclusive of the illustrated cartoon. She, too, offers e-courses, books (and audiobooks), newsletter, blog, yet some things set her apart. I identify with her broader range as an artist in mixed media, photography, storytelling and instructional media in fun, eclectic and informative ways along with her advantageous use of technology. Her values match mine by infusing art into everyday life, continuing to challenge herself to grow as an artist with her explorations through travel related studies, and giving back through philanthropy. She has her own shingle on Etsy and sells her art wares and books across several sites and platforms. I think it is her penchant for the silly side of life and her heart for experimental adventure that are so identifiable to me in that pretend space.



Carla, what would you say are your earliest, specific childhood memories and beginnings as an artist into adulthood that spurred your sense of wonder and imagination then, and how do you infuse and merge them into who you are now as an artist and creative soul as you expand your repertoire?

My, this was more fun than I originally thought! Also, great to focus on the challenge and leave my troubles behind and stop that recent broken record. Thanks for enduring!

Enjoy these two wildly creative artists!


P.S. There are more artists who inspire me that I will continue to share about through with writing here in this format from time to time from the popular to local/regional to former professors and others I know and know of.

This blog post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 6

#10DBC, #freedomplan

Yawning & Yearning



#10DBC, #freedomplan

Day 5: Daily Success Plan

You’ve GOT to be kidding! It’s late as usual. Middle of night past midnight and STILL haven’t done this blog post. Arghhhhh! Again I am griping here that I am exhausted. Well, I am. It’s not just that. To consider a success plan when I feel super tapped out and hitting bottom. Here I am seeking total time freedom for my life when I feel the exact opposite. I feel I am in prison regarding the situation with care for my dad. I know that sounds plain awful. I am resentful, angry and overwhelmed. He needs assisted living and wants me to organize, manage and help him any time round the clock. I moved in for three months even with an arrangement already with my mom in another location. She has not been receiving enough of my support. I do not have the energy to do basic tasks for my own well being, daily habits, hygiene. Forget my creative goals. I did last minute today create a rushed art piece to submit for an upcoming Day of the Dead show. A bit ridiculous because as much as I do honor my parents I sense the best thing now is to take a huge backseat to my dad’s needs and wishes to see if he can truly get some of his needs met with steady outside help from private paid caregivers. Of course I will pitch in, share quality time and continue support in various ways for most medical appointments, errands and shopping. I cannot continue in the capacity as things are. It is a vicious cycle and unrelenting. There has been plenty of time to plan this out. I don’t know if his mind is intact enough because as bright as he is there are a whole lot of lost moments and inability to take care of simple tasks himself. He cries all the time and I just want to breakdown. I had it tonight and left upset. I’m sure he’s upset, too. I have felt disappointed my life through by my father’s life choices and with this let down I am still willing to be present with him and someone he can lean on. I am a human being and not a robot, maid, servant, or wonder woman and I do have limits. My physical health has suffered and here I am again driving tonight tired on the road. I am always tired and getting headaches. I am all alone in this. It is an isolating and insular situation I need to escape from and find a rapid solution.

So, that said, I will lightly touch upon this exercise now. I see the day 6 in my email and I feel more behind and swallowed whole than ever. I want to add more to my perfect day, however it feels more like a fantasy than reality. A dream that is ideal and maybe I will get more real with it where I feel I am at and who and how I am now and where I want to be in the world. I am confusing myself aren’t I? I will hold that dream sacred and add on at a later time.

This daily success plan couldn’t come at a worse time. I have a headache and feel fuzzy minded. Touching upon briefly. My time and days aren’t my own right now. I sort of feel like a fraud even doing this. I need a moment. A bit emotional. I am not …maybe I won’t ever be able to find my way again. I am a resilient soul. Rarely have I felt defeated like I do now. I am drowning. Tears are running down my face. They taste salty. I don’t know if I ever will be happy again. It comes in bits when I feel like I can breathe and feel free among other artists where ever. I feel free when I am doing something totally for myself without having to take care of another. I feel free when I can relax and watch my library DVD’s. These days these moments are far apart and getting there can be extremely stressful and often I am too tired to fully enjoy what I worked so hard to get to and often hold back or fall asleep. I know I can’t go on like this, living a restrictive life, a life that is not my own. If anything, one’s life has got to be lived. A person should be the star of her own life and not just a supporting character in others’ lives. It can’t be right that another can live life on their terms all while draining your energy dry until nothing is left over but a shriveled, disheveled mess who didn’t brush her hair all day, hardly ate anything decent and wakes up wanting to go back to bed all day but cannot.

So no, I don’t know if I can write this exercise today to the extent I probably need. Just a few quick thoughts because this idea in this moment hurts my head. Usually I am totally game for this sort of thing and I know I signed up for it. I hoped and planned by September 1st I would be free. Alas, I am not. Yet….

What I Will Do

All I can think to start is with journaling by hand to sort my thoughts and feelings first before blogging to gain clarity and plan my days better and easier. This has helped me tremendously to not edit myself and spew out all the gunk to get through all the raw stuff into the juicy bits. This is all I can promise now. 3 pages does the trick and casts its magic so I can get to the heart of my day’s plan and write out what I am up to and the productivity I seek. This cleans house in my mind of cobwebs, dust and darkness that transforms into brighter ideas that are reachable and broken down into morsels.

I’m not sure if this is to include daily habits and ritual/routine?

I do have two projects to work toward completion. 1) Continue with drawing my whimsical paintings until I have enough for a solo show. As I go I can create works to submit to group shows. Locate an exhibition space and mark my calendar for an opening reception. 2) Go beyond first two finished short stories and write eleven more for a collection to self publish in print and on various online platforms. See about getting a few individual stories published in a print or online magazine. Create a book tour for public readings.

When I Will Do It

I will journal whatever time I wake up to start my day. And if that can’t happen, I will grab the first time available or write during  in between moments to get all I can out. Or journal before blog to set mind on task of time freedom.

I can’t commit to how my time will shape up. I need to think on this. If haven’t eaten do so or make a quick high protein breakfast smoothie.

Ideally I would continue writing and researching my background info for these short stories immediately after journaling for 2-3 hours or 5-6 twenty-five minute sessions as mentioned in day 5 video for higher concentrated focus and productivity. I am excited to try this out since I am surrounded by disruptions that drive me crazy no matter how much I ask for uninterrupted time to focus. My sense of focus feels shot theses days.

Break for snack or solid lunch.

Gather art materials and tools for image work. Continue with current drawing style on paper to warm up, then transfer to canvas. Do this for 3-5 hours or 6-8 twenty-five minute sessions. If I feel like doing art one day for 8 hours then switch it up. Same goes if I feel more into writing all day to stay focused on getting through a short story chapter and stick with it.

Break for supper. Choose to continue on with project into night or stop until next day. Weekends can skip for break or work on if choose.

Upon reflection this time allotment does not match my current schedule. Realistically I could journal thirty minutes to an hour then two to three maybe four hours a day on a creative project using the pomodoro method. Until things change, afternoons are filled with a multitude of medical appointments. Maybe I won’t have to be there as much for others and someone else can attend, however I have a lot to deal with for myself and I must use my health insurance in case things are different with the political climate. I have postponed a bunch of stuff I need to care of for me and now it’s crunch time. Another reason I must now back off from dad situation that is all-consuming and so stressful in that I need to destress for medical procedures. I believe a state of calm is necessary for ultimate success under sedation for both invasive and painful procedures. I am on the cusp of cutting this pattern out with my dad since he wants independent living I want him to do more for himself or else it’s a reality check for him to accept a new life chapter and move into assisted living somehow. I know he doesn’t want that and I don’t blame him. He doesn’t like any of my solutions like moving into an apartment in my complex to make it easier for me all around. I don’t know what else to do. So it may be slower going though if I am steady and consistent I can still meet my goals set without pushing so hard.

How this will get me closer to my dreams

Writing through my roadblocks to clear my path and keep my dreams alive will create inner peace and a refreshed outlook so that I can breathe and move forward one gentle step at a time toward milestones I set for myself. Journaling feeds my creative fire and is self motivating. Often writing in journal evolves from lucid dream recall and other imaginal things I whip up that I can continue writing or turn to drawing or both. Also, there are concepts to archive in project books as my idea library. I need to select what to focus on, what I am up to working onto completion. This process assists in finding my focus.

Completing an art series for a solo show and pieces entered into group shows might sell and generate income. Exposure might lead to new patrons and additional art opportunities. These images will launch my brand of imagery to  be licensed and published. This will prompt me to archive and display on my own website.Online print-on-demand and merchandise sites will also be potential moneymakers and introduce me to a global market. Digital fabric might be a good match for some of my artwork. I can evolve this drawing style into a how-to book, online course and retreat offering to give me opportunity to see the world and travel.

Completing an inventive short story collection can generate passive income with online platforms, such as Kindle, Ingramspark, Nook, Apple, Amazon/CreateSpace, and others. I can self publish on LuLu and/or other sites. I can submit for magazine publication of a few short stories. I might be sought out by a publishing house or magazine for future gigs and projects. I can gain a following/fan base. I can launch a podcast and book tour for public readings and special events to see the nation and world. Practicing the art of the short story will lay the foundation to conquer chapters for a full work of fiction in a genre of my choosing.

That’s it for now. Guess I need to get through writing about my frustration and feeling additionally overwhelmed by these exercises to get to the nitty gritty of real plan making and a raw constructive mindset to move forward.

Happy Creating,


This blog post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 5

Shift Happens


Day 4: Unlocking My Superpowers

#10DBC, #freedomplan

It’s late and I’m beat. I first saw this assignment in the wee hours. I have tended it throughout my day. At the car repair business I wrote notes in three columns for what I am good at, enjoy doing and what might be purpose-driven moneymakers for a creative soul. Also, I asked for support on Facebook though no real bites. One person might write or give me in person some thoughts. I did ask my mom and dad independent of one another and received interesting answers.

The things I am good at include art, writing, connecting people, uplifting spirits, being resourceful, logistics, helping others, imagination, creativity, intuition, research, technology, motivation of self and others, being a Good Samaritan, being funny, self-expression, ideation, and more.

What I enjoy doing includes the above. Regarding art making, I have fallen back in love with drawing in recent years and evolved a new technique and style moving my fine art, illustration, whimsies and cartooning forward.

I love yoga and have been in and out of it over 30 years however struggling with personal and physical setbacks to a regular practice even now with unlimited monthly membership at a local studio.

I enjoy conversation, philosophy, spirituality, reading printed books/magazines, solitude, art and music festivals, explorations of any kind, creative process, travel and adventure, excursions, day trips, mixed media, merging digital and traditional collage, listening to music , writing and listening to poetry/lyrics, getting lost watching movies and edgy unpredictable TV series and studying the writing, science and science fiction, the fantastical, magical realism, contemporary and classic literature, sharing in all sorts of ways with friends/family and knowledge/information sharing for the betterment of others, interviewing others, gathering knowledge and info and articulating it in new ways as convergence of ideas and synthesis, massage, hiking, being in nature, being in communities of like souls, making new friends, talking and hanging out with girlfriends, learning new things, expanding my horizons, creative living and lifestyles, animal behavior, time with my kitty cat, painting on canvas, making a mess with art supplies everywhere, fresh art tools and supplies, wandering in bookshops, wandering energy, whimsical everything, art opportunities, conceptual development, collecting various things, sorting and displaying, making fragmented things whole as in collage, non-toxic printmaking/paper making/marbling, anything about longevity and blue zones, making up my own recipes and cooking up fun hearty and healthy meals, presenting meals for special treats for loved ones, design, technology, volunteering when I can give time and energy, mystical occurrences, figurative drawing, creative healing, in-depth study, academics, camping, deep ecology, Eco art, theatre, performance, dancing, contact improv, laughing, singing, humming, giving voice to things, voiceover, animation, stories and live storytelling, live acoustic music, desire to play musical (sacred) instruments, sacred arts/objects/ritual, seasonal changes, being kind, treating others in fun ways, gift giving, craft making, trying new things out, being flexible in body/mind/heart/soul/spirit, producing and directing creative projects and special events, avant grade and eclectic experiences, lucid dreaming, journaling, taking pictures, stargazing, touching organic textures, strong tactile sense, rocks, geologic forms and terrain, living wonders, trees, playing board/picnic/card/social games, picnics, visual world, aroma therapies, personal touches, receiving treats, playfulness, peace, serenity, mindfulness, nature walks/photography and studies, travel research for art/writing/creative works, rainbows and natural wonders and phenomena, comedy improvisation, theatre games, cirque du soleil, circus, clowning, active storytelling, face painting, mandala making, circles, wild women, ancient stories/myths and legends, classic rock and roll, folk music, cultural music and events, new music, Woodstock style home design, master craftsman and art nouveau designs, Bohemia, experientials, unique and eclectic experiences, participatory events and more.

I realize I could be in my right livelihood and live an authentic life through art making endeavors, multi-genre writing, publish magazine articles, poems and stories, publish and license imagery, create my own brand, connect people in unusual ways launching art salons/adventures/tours/retreats/experiences/online courses/residencies, write/produce and direct independent media, creativity coaching, motivational speaker/presenter, creative healer, explore art as medicine and more.

I notice how I make others laugh, always looking for the funny. to cheer up others and reach out on a soul level to anyone in my orbit where ever I am with simple gifts in everyday kindnesses – little gestures that matter most. Being able to stay in my integrity, look myself in the mirror and keep my word are high priorities to me. I feel the impossible is possible. I believe in being bold, visionary, inclusive of others and celebratory.

My dad told me I have the gift of gab.  That I can convince others to do something and talk to anyone in a personable, relatable way befriending strangers and people from varying walks of life. He said all successful sales people have this marvelous talent, that I could sell ice cream to an Eskimo and be a great car salesperson. There was another example I don’t recall. Though I don’t see myself selling cars.

My mom says I have a knack of making order out of disorder, beauty out of mayhem, that I see things others don’t see or see more deeply.  When the chips are down, that I’m right there to help no matter what the relationship with me. She says I am very friendly and can make a meal like a gourmet that is delicious. I don’t know about being a gourmet because that takes real intensive training and practical experience. Chefs are amazing! I’ve picked up things here and there, mainly improved cooking skills watching PBS.

These observations from my folks are eye opening when heard as witnesses outside of myself. Things I am aware of to some degree. And my own process earlier in the day has shifted while absorbing and processing into something transformational. I feel as if my mind is opening, a jar lid being lifted. An inner shift is occurring in deeply subconscious and conscious plateaus I cannot yet pin down. I can say that I have written countless lists, goals, visions and plans, however there is a magical element to this process merging into a soul alchemy. Over this past decade I have learned to trust my intuitive self versus the smatterings in my youth and earlier adult life that I did not always listen to for better outcomes as I do now. I honestly know this to be true for me. Feeling lighter, clearer and refreshed like a good hearty rain cleaning the air. Thank you Natalie Sisson for this fantastic exercise! It made a difference in my life already. Maybe it will resonate for you, dear reader, too!

This blog post is in response to  Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 4 .

Future Vision


Day 3: My Perfect Day

#10DBC, #freedomplan

September 12, 2016


I began my day listening to the today’s  motivational video for this exercise. It has been percolating somewhat through a busy day. I am too tired to be detailed and post imagery I wish to. I have seen and done this perfect day before. My perfect day is not today. I give it two parts. Perfect Day from Home is expanded on her. Perfect Day Traveling has yet to be truly tapped into that feeling. I vision a blending of both homestead and travel in my life.

Perfect Day from Home

I awaken naturally after a restorative sleep to quietude. Watch the sunrise over the hills and caress them in golden light. I share my life and days with a man who is my equal and a generous, fun loving creative adventurous soul who is playful, joyous and makes me laugh. We take turns pampering and surprising one another in simple small ways as supportive, loving gestures. A pitcher of cool refreshing lemon water awaits on my bedside table. We share quiet moments on our outdoor lanai, laying back on a thick organic cotton futon. I dash into the reading nook and sketch a few ideas and journal in solitude awash with sacred music playing. There are 3 children we have adopted who storm in to greet us as we go downstairs to our large country family style kitchen for breakfast. The youngest girl and I go into our large greenhouse off the kitchen to pick ripe tomatoes with sprigs of dill, lemongrass, green onion, flat leaf parsley and thyme for frittatas. He and I eat light. Protein fruit smoothies definitely. It’s a weekday and off they go to our shared homeschool network down the road. We go outside or to the yoga room as our yoga teacher and friends arrive to share a practice. Off he goes to his music studio in the house or out for other music business, creative projects and collaborations. I go down to my art barn studio to paint, write and create. I have a production team and office to deal with licensing, custom work, and various projects though that is in a separate wing so I can have my serenity to focus. Mid-day we have a private chef for he and I to share a relaxing intimate lunch back at the house or somewhere on our retreat community land, maybe a prepacked picnic to escape to a yurt or cabin. After school it’s down to the community classroom art space where homeschool kids come for creative play, exploration and art that I run with support from parents and other artists. Also, we have a learning farm with small patches of crops and community garden space with animals that the kids learn how to care for them for school. Our whole family with help from a ranch hand and family dog do our part with the goats, cows and chickens. In the evening it’s either a family supper inside or on the outdoor deck, maybe sing around a fire and roast marshmallows and make s’mores. Talk over family travel itinerary and other couple and individual travel plans. Jump onto our golf carts up to our private planetarium and stargaze. Or go up to our community kitchen gathering for meals with friends or a charitable function we stage likening it to our own pop up restaurant for kicks. At the end of the day tucking our kids into bed reading and improvising stories, sharing in talks if something is on their minds. Walking into our candlelit bedroom to find a couples massage awaits with classical guitar music playing. The scent of Amber in the air. Off to bed in the cozy strong arms of my man sleeping to rhythmic drums basking in our off-the-grid Tuscan-style villa oasis under the stars out on our private lanai with a soft warm breeze brushing our skin.

Also various traveling versions single and with partner and with kids. Not sure about this piece. Maybe home is just me or with partner and no kids. Maybe the kids are his with whatever the situation. More to embellish. This is my previous vision. Some additional details, a guest house for my mom next to ours. Stella my kitty cat companion with me everywhere. Playing family games. Intimate time with my partner. We produce annual creative camps and invite our friends to camp on our land and stay in our retreat center. It builds into our own private festival of imagination and creativity. We begin by renewing our vows as our community grows and invite others to wed and renew their vows to launch the occasion on our anniversary. There’s a lot of music, art making, theatre games, poetry readings, writing groups, drama, dance, inventions, installations, performances, circus, cooking, and more! Everyone contributes to our festival.

This blog post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 3

Updating computer to hyperlink. iPad not cooperating yet.


Haphazard Life and Moments


Haphazard Life and Moments

(don’t know why blue block image won’t show will fix soon on laptop not functional from iPad though shows up on Facebook link go figure)


September 11, 2016

Day 2 of Freedom Plan Blog

#10DBC, #freedomplan


Finding My Why

This post will be brief and quick even though I have been pondering on it today. My post tomorrow may be later at night. The actual dates I will post since WordPress is ahead by several hours. And I will update the previous day but I will label these by the day of the challenge. I may be able to get back to it and embellish and link later if I can use cellular form dad’s. His caregiver did not show up earlier and he is hungry. It’s all I can do say hang in there and try doing some things for yourself! It’s hard for him on one hand though he is capable to a certain degree and on the other he wants to be taken care of. This past week is the first since all June where I had some relief and support. I am also my mom’s sole caregiver. She is quite isolated and I had become a bit isolated, too. My dad does have practically a harem of various women coming and going such as therapists, nurse, counselor, a platonic friend and a few other friends though that has diminished. I feel the weight of the world. More on how this situation came to be and dynamics to a degree while maintaining the privacy of my folks and family as best as possible in order to share my story and point of view.

I do need to get going. I am on my neighbors wifi since ours is down and might see about sharing and contributing to hers if possible. Dad has no wifi which can be challenging if iPad won’t do cellular with data limits. More to my tech juggling and one issue after the next. I have made myself portable with regards to access so this does fit my overall lifestyle in past and present to be a girl on the fly!

As to my why and what gets me juiced and up in my days. For several years I have been digging and excavating to become clearer about what I call my core essence and renewed sense of purpose which has shifted from earlier years. I Yield to re dream the dream and expand my perspective. I can tell you that if one comes into her own in her 30’s, and lives more her truth in her 40’s and hopefully lives authentically  through her 50’s and onward, I feel my answers have evolved naturally.

Ever since I could hold a crayon in my hand I drew pictures and wrote stories and poems. Pictures and words, words and pictures. It’s always been that for me. And still is. I am compelled to make art and write things. I tend to write lengthy novelist answers to others. This is how my mind and soul and heart operate. I never have understood the idea of retirement because I will always be working on creative projects. In my forties my hormones ran amock and my dreams and concepts were borderline creativity and madness! I have documented a multitude of ideas, some more detailed than others for art and writing projects that can overlap and include one another. I will never be bored or run out of ideas with this arsenal and the overactive imagination I am blessed with. Or at times, cursed with when the idea machine just won’t turn off and rest. Things are calmer these days although intense dreams can feel overwhelming especially when I am unable to journal in a timely way.

I would say imagination feeds my soul and is a giant why for me. Nature and ecology and the mysteries of the universe and spirit are another. I am a curious being. It’s in my nature. I guess I was kind of a tomboy as a small child wearing overalls and stuffing my pockets full of rocks my mom would discover at the end of the day. I would say the exploratory process, creativeTrusting my intuition in the past decade has also become a strong uniting force within me, a strength that has always been simmering under the surface that I have not always understood how to listen and harness this energy as I now am able with greater  knowing. I know things will get better, it’s just the HOW!

I am excited to create, only I need a clearer space to produce. My home space is multiple layers of clutter since last fall due to my health issues. Then it just got so much worse since my dad’s accident at New Years it has been difficult to keep control. Since moving back home in September from staying at dad’s full time I am slowly taking back one small area at a time though this is slow going. I am exhausted and in dire need of sleep. I managed 12 hours of sleep yesterday, only 6 today. I am tired in my blood, bones, soul, mind, heart and more. I have never been so tired in my life with a lit of sleep deprivation over the past several months. I have been afraid for myself in doing simple tasks with concerns regarding driving. I had a small mishap the other week on my way back from Thursday Art a Preview night hitting an embankment and flattening both left side tires requiring a flatbed tow truck. That was a wake up call and that week I was in a lot of too close calls. Since then I am taking it easier and simplifying as best I can.

I need time, energy and space freedom away from being an overly stressed and solely depended on caregiver. I am working on creating a team of support. My dad is not the easiest patient or individual for me to deal with. Others, too, see this stubborn streak and his habit of procrastination can be problematic. He and I can get along well. We have finally experienced some healing and reconciliation in our relationship. It’s just time to let go and for me to be released, for him to be more independent and if not, what does that look like for him for us to get his needs met so I can maintain my own life and be there for my mom, too. No one person can be there 24/7 for any other person all the time. There are too many things someone needs done for themselves that by doing for another it backs up doing for yourself. Plus, for grooming, bathing and hygiene professionals take on certified training to better manage that family members guesstimate how to do. This can be challenging with the dead weight of another who isn’t balanced all that well on his feet. Each one of us requires a life of our own and to live more freely no matter the love we share and wish to give. One must be a friend to oneself first, something my dad always said to me. I need to on my oxygen mask first, breathe, destress and relax from his high anxiety and bring more calm to him, too.

Since I was very young I desired travel, yet I have not done all that much which surprises me due to various life occurrences too detailed for this post. Travel research with nature and cultural photography and experiences of place are inspiring for my art images. Any change of scene brings a rejuvenation to my views. I create my own opportunities and when I am in the flow of that energy things go well. When I allow others critical voices to override my soul voice things go awry. Tapping into the money flow for this energy to flow through me from and to others by what I creatively contribute is what I seek so I am able to be and live more a carefree lifestyle again.

Not that I don’t and won’t care about others, it’s just that in my life chapters there seems to be a lot of feelings of restriction which I have felt intensely in recent months with my dad in his house. I have felt confined, as my cat Stella has, almost sad to say imprisoned by this situation which I feel this very moment needing to scoot over to his side as he is depending on me. I won’t be home sleeping in my own bed tonight. I need to be home more to get back to my center, conquer this clutter, clean house, move on toward greater productivity and create beyond piecemeal making of art. How can I instill a discipline to my creative practice when I feel like a piece of playdoh being pulled and stretched beyond her limits? When I take care of others needs, I don’t take care of my own well enough. I’m not eating right. I gained some weight causing more problems with my already problematic musculoskeletal issues and with a new left knee concern from a bad fall due to stress outside dad’s house in May. Just things keep building. So many of my personal details falling away that need tending.

I am not sure if I answered my focus from day 1 well enough, or today’s finding my why? I do know I have taken more time and need to go. I will continue to ponder and integrate these ideas for upcoming posts to gain greater clarity for my own sake beyond simply this wonderful eye opening exercise. I had other things I planned on writing floating in my mind but I felt rushed to get this done. To tell you the truth, living between two households is challenging to hold one’s center when everything feels and looks in shambles. If I could feel grounded and centered again with improved life balance that would be amazing! Right now I’ll settle for throwing my tank tops, socks and under things in their designated drawers and will neaten them up late. I just need things in their place so I can feel less displaced. Sometimes I wonder if this feeling of displacement I have felt often in life along with adapting and being flexible to the uncertainty that seems a constant experience has prepared me to be less attached to one place or circumstance and remain open to changes that seem to becoming more extreme as time continues on. A nomadic lifestyle is appealing and on the other end I am drawn to homesteading living off-grid. Maybe a girl can live a dual life! I admit to feeling defeated at times , a rarity for me, and lately know I am unhappy. Shifting to a happiness spectrum is a definite marker of daily motivation and healthy habits that are a foundation to my why. Changes need to be made so I can break surface, lighten up my load and inhale fresh air.

10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge by Natalie Sisson