Oh, friends! I had really good intentions. In my March post You, Too, Can Lose Twenty Pounds in One Afternoon, I lost 21 pounds of old clothes and shoes that don’t suit me anymore and only kept the things I love…
A mysterious lady photographer, #womenbywomen, Impossible giving, crowd-fund your maternity leave, a pregnancy confession, some politics, female artists, and honoring Zaha Hadid.
“I like it when humans communicate their disdain for perfection and/or sheep mentality via not playing into (usually very boring) trends…”
” I think we are all creative beings and underestimate our creative abilities every day—especially the non-artsy-fartsy types…”
“One of my former comics instructors recently said something eluding to being an artist and cartoonist is like being a vampire, it is always going to be a part of you. I have always been creative, any time I try to do anything else, writing, journalism, community organizing, teaching, my art always intersects with that work…
I have re-written this piece a hundred times. I sit here with sweaty palms and a lump in my throat.
This month is all about creativity. Creativity. Hmm. I love to craft, doodle, I attempt to sew, I can design skin care regimes.. but are those the pieces of me that I want to share?…
Happy SPRING! Enjoy these stories of bravery, determination, innovation, trash transformed into art, women doing what they were told they could never do, beautiful pictures of girls going to school and many others! YAY!
disappear for a moment,
with only the fox
and return home
And all at once
Creativity (noun): “The use of the imagination or original ideas, especially in the production of an artistic work.”
Oh, it sounds so simple doesn’t it? The use of the imagination… there are no rules, no boundaries, no foundation, no precedent… So why is it, then, that many of us become so disengaged with creativity once we grow up?
I actually can’t pinpoint when I started Giving A Damn. I wish I could. I wish I could say that as a small child I was picking up litter and writing letters to the President asking for changes to happen or giving speeches like this girl…
Once there was a nice lady.
Her favorite place was the Cozy Nook.
The nook was a corner full of twinkle lights and office supplies, two of the lady’s favorite things. Early in the morning, she’d wake and go straight to the cozy nook. She’d draw and write and pray and ponder. And the time in the cozy nook would refresh her and fill her with wonder.
Today I lost 21 pounds and I feel pretty amazing. As part of my year of Extraordinary 40, I have said goodbye to anything in my closet that I feel is holding me back. If it’s dingy, damaged beyond care to repair, cheaply made, uncomfortable, or sentimental but not useful, it was thanked for its service and let go.
Stories of motherhood, single ladies, boobs, bodies, kidneys, and undergarments; some groovy jewelry, and an abundance of ART to get your Creative Forces in motion!
“Growing up I didn’t know what I was doing with my singing. I knew I loved it, I knew it felt good, and singing in choir helped me feel a part of something bigger when I was in school and felt like the outsider. It still blows my mind that people buy my records and see me play live. I don’t take it for granted. It overwhelms me…”
When I need you.
I need you
To be strong and willing.
Scared of nothing.
That’s another thing…”
At the time, I thought all of these situations meant that I was failing and falling and making the wrong decisions but now I see all of these “roads not taken” as the ones that led me here to a life that I am totally in love with (and falling more in love with everyday). I had to feel what DIDN’T work for me to find out what makes me soar.
February’s #Extraordinary40 challenge was to consciously make ten deposits into our “Spiritual Bank Accounts” (read post here). Imagine my surprise when in an attempt to connect to whatever is out there that is bigger than me I ended up discovering a bunch of new things about, well, me.
“Sometimes I wonder how we are still married when so much of our time is spent apart.
I never wanted to marry someone in the military….Until one day at work – I saw you. I refilled your coffee, you smiled, and I was yours. “
“Making the choice to truly be alone and take an honest look within meant I disappointed people. This meant not being everyone’s best friend. This meant saying no. A lot. But I’ll tell you something, I freaking loved it…”
Happy Monday and join me as we explore some mighty fine beach bodies, hotter than hot “green” bloggers, incredible street art, the science of female friendships, using Instagram for creative inspiration, a special “be litter free” video and more!
“…After all, isn’t that what attraction really is? A dance of power?
Wanting someone who is just out of reach. Or being just out of reach to someone else. Overpowering someone with your desirability. Or being overpowered by someone else’s desirability…”
.. isn’t it funny that when you aren’t looking your life becomes exactly what you wanted it to be, by the fate of your very actions…
A great piece by Lena D, A girl gets dressed by Granny, teen feminists, the new Barbie, ethical fashion, some Podcast love, and of course ART!
“I challenge you to mindfully make at least 10 deposits into your Spirituality Bank Account throughout the month of February. We are going to do this together and I’m going to give you some suggestions, but first, let me tell you about my trip to INDIA!…”
“What I realized… was that I didn’t pursue my dreams because I didn’t know what the heck those dreams were. Instead, I was on a journey to DISCOVER my dreams through trial and error…”
“…I sat down and she said “You’re a nurse! You passed! You’re done!”
I didn’t completely comprehend what she said. It took a minute for my brain to process the information and then I realized I was finally a nurse.”
We are off to a rocking start for this year’s wondrous project, “Extraordinary40!” In case you missed it, check out my post Beginning the Year With a Powerful Ritual. In a nut shell, the fabulous women of Project:Women and I are celebrating my year of turning 40 with monthly challenges geared towards “best-everness” and you are invited to join in the fun! January’s challenge was to complete your own super sacred ritual acknowledging and thanking 2015 and welcoming 2016 with enthusiasm and bravery! It’s not too late to perform this ritual and rock your gratitude! As promised, here are my answers to the sensory questions for 2015 as compared to how I wanted 2015 to be way back on New Year’s Eve of 2014! I’m so looking forward to next year when you, too, are able to compare your answers. What we might want and what we actually get can be surprising, funny, maybe disappointing, and often powerful. What did I want 2015 to smell like? The Ocean. But what did it actually smell like? PIZZA! (Okay.) …
Super Soul Sunday – Marianne Williamson I am starting this one off BIG! Watch the incredible “spiritual luminary” Marianne Williamson talk about spirituality in relationships. 2016 is the year for me to commit to and follow my spiritual path and that means honoring my body, mind and soul so that they can be the strongest and healthiest of my life. I hope you enjoy (and need) this Super Soul Session as much as I did. If I think I am just one wave in the ocean, surrounded by this huge ocean, how can I not be terrified of the ocean, how can I not be terrified of other waves, how can I not think other waves are going to completely overwhelm me? But if I realize, I am one with the whole freaking ocean. I move, it moves…we are a powerful thing and I have no problem recognizing my oneness with the ocean because therein lies my power. Syrian refugee children transform Iraqi prison with art I am not going to say much about this …
I am writing this after a walk and an online yoga session with my teacher, Annie Carpenter. My mind is still and my body at rest. The constant barrage of thoughts and worries have subsided and settled like little flakes at the bottom of a snow globe. On January 1, I was asked to think of one word to focus on for 2016. Of course, my immediate thought was “what’s a word that would cause some sort of improvement?” There must be a word to make me better, right? That’s what New Years Resolutions are all about! But, the inner experiences I have been through this month have urged me to see this concept of intention and focus through a different spiritual lense. I continue to wrestle with perfectionism. God bless. Sometimes I think this is my most important life lesson! This week it was brought to light in a variety of ways…when I put sink dish soap in the dishwasher and bubbles exploded everywhere, when I lost out on a job, and when a …
Goodbye diapers. Adios, spilt milk. Peace out temper tantrums and soiled linens. You will not be missed! Welcome acne and blemishes. Oh hello, cellulite and pores. It is so nice to see you dark circles and sun spots! I cannot wait to get my hands on a face. Five months ago I left my life as a stay-at-home mom to pursue my passion of skin care. And now I sit here just one week shy of graduating from the school where I found my new love – esthetics. It seems unreal. Before school began I requested an orientation. It was the very first step of putting my foot in the door. I needed to bring in my application, take a school tour, and possibly put down my very first payment. But I couldn’t even find a babysitter. My husband and I had just moved across the country three months prior; asking family wasn’t an option and we didn’t know anyone. After weeks of searching, finding a sitter seemed impossible. I had been on the waitlist …
Blahhhhhh. 11 Jan. 2016 I had expected to write something full of thrill and excitement and joy for this month’s theme, but then I never end up writing about what I think I’ll write about. This morning I suffered a minor emotional breakdown. Overwhelmed. To the max. Cried, hugged on my husband, and slowly started to feel better. Life is freaking hard to deal with sometimes, no? To be honest, I should have expected it. I had been so on my game the past few months. Full of energy and positivity, multitasking like a bandito, staying up late and waking up early and getting. it. done. But what I forgot is that at some point the great big Burnout will occur. It’s inevitable. In fact, it’s just simple math: Overwork + Lack of Sleep + Overstimulation in the form of Crazy-Whirlwind-Housecleaning/Reorganizing + Financial Stress = Emotional Meltdown waiting to happen. Add in a full dose of pregnancy hormones and whoooaaa buddy, look out. (Funny side note on those hormones… throughout this pregnancy (5 months thus …
Come on, Common. Your down time is up. It’s time to stand down. Give up, give in, give them everything, or stand up for your Homeland. Buy time in the meantime while you figure out how to get on common ground or get mean. It wouldn’t be uncommon. “Let us in!” They’re storming the fences. They’re holding their babies faces to the wire. Swollen with hunger and tears, this baby’s cries sound just like yours. They would delight each other if they met, but then again, they would fight like dogs over crayon or crown. It’s not uncommon for children to clash. There’s a one-eyed woman near the back of the masses ranting revelations loudly. Everyone pushes past. After all, she’s holding two chickens, and her clothes are like rags, but she knows about barters. She gauged her own eye out for foresight; a devil’s deal. It’s not uncommon for old hags. Time is ticking. “These people are tics!” “They’ll suck us dry!” “We will only take a few.” “Women …
Bunnies, cleaning, islands, books, art, some toes, a church-turned-skate park, and a Bowie homage.
Do you love champagne? I do! Do you love to dance and party? Me, too, in my own adorable introverted way! Do you love to kiss cute people (or one very special cute person) at midnight? Yes, so do I! I love New Year’s Eve and I love our social traditions and rituals but I’ve created one of my own that I’ve been performing for most of the last decade and I’ve got to warn you, it’s pretty powerful. Before I share my step by step ritual with you so that you, too, can perform it, I want to tell you something personal about me. Come closer. Closer. Good. I’M TURNING FORTY IN 2016!!! What the heck does that have to do with powerful New Year’s rituals? Good question. I’ve been honing and shaping this ever-evolving ritual since the age of thirty-two when I basically hit zero and found myself starting completely over and now here I am on the cusp of a new year AND a new decade. Be it twenty, thirty, forty or …
For as long as I can remember, I have loved the days between Christmas and New Years a tiny bit more than any others. Even though Christmas Day is undoubtedly my absolute favorite day of the year (the family is gathered, baked-goods and gifts abound, a fragrant Spruce covered in twinkling lights and useless yet adorable baubles in the living room– what isn’t there to love?) Yet there is something almost magical about the handful of otherwise ordinary days post-25th. The excitement and jubilation of Christmas has passed, and with it go the stress and pressures which inevitably build up in the weeks preceding it. New Years is still on the horizon, plenty of time to make plans and clean up the general chaos that piles of gifts bring about. These precious days are almost like an extension of the year in a way, like you’ve been given a little extra time before the ball drops on the new year to relax, revel, and then get your act together. Today I scoured our bathroom. (Small house, …
This is our last Monday Menagerie of the year, so we decided to compile our “picks of the year” to share — the stories, work, creations, and women who inspired us the most in 2015!
The Union You and I Are different See? You are man You are the spirit that ponders The mountain You are the body that wanders There You are the train that boards and passes Collects their tickets And their tithes Who says with confidence and conviction, “You may not cross” This line. I do not bear that cross I am woman I am the spirit that ponders The man I am the body that wanders Here I am the countryside that stays Only subtle changes Set in motion by the tracks Of trains Who questions before asking “May I come with you?” This time Hoping perhaps You and I Are the same You see? * featured image: “track” by Joshua Hoffmann via
Art Edition #2 – The Art Basel Female Artists Selection
Also None I can be accused and not become. Feel guilt when had not done. Feel sadness and happiness that are not mine. Feel sadness and happiness that are mine but not me. Just passing through. I can drift and not swim. I can swim and not fight. I can fight and not die. I can die and not live. I can be wrong I know. But I’ve been right also. With what I knew at the time. But if there had been something I had not known at the time I was right perhaps I was wrong. Even then. Even now. I can be boy. I can be girl. I can be black. I can be white. I could go blue. I simply choose not to. Yet. I can be ready and not become. Feel proud when had not done. But as all of these which is me? All. And also None. * Photo by Lauren Lege
In my #HopeForOurDaughters issue I bring you various stories of daughters across the globe that are spreading the feeling of hope, fulfilling their dreams and passions, taking matters into their own hands and showing us how the next generation (and some that have come before) is making this world a better place for all of us. First, however, I want to share the trailer of the film every woman (and man!) should see and background on some of the women we owe our lives to (literally)! Beautiful. Breathtaking. Disturbing. Necessary. Mothers, if they are old enough, take your daughters to go and see this film. It’s not a “feel good” film but it is inspiring and reminds us that we can accomplish ANYTHING if we believe in it enough and that ANYTHING is possible, especially if you have your girlfriends to count on and a huge amount of courage. SUFFRAGETTE MOVEMENT There were so many things I did not know about the movement before I saw this film…heck, I didn’t even know there was a …
A book about one woman’s experience through pregnancy, labor, and the early days of motherhood– Honest, open, and full of wisdom and truth.
Paris, Mon Amour.
I had a different Monday Menagerie planned for today, but after the news of the Paris attacks on Friday, I couldn’t think about anything else. So this little compilation is dedicated to the City of Light.
In this one: Lenny, Super Schools, Women&Girls Lead, Emerson Collective, a lot of stories, a TED talk, some art, and some good music.
This is a new series I’m doing, where I write stuff. That’s pretty much the gist of it.
the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative:
the drawing in of breath; inhalation.
This is my “Inspired By” issue.