Posts tagged ‘art’

Fun With Shape Poems/Concrete Poems

IMG_0032     IMG_0031

The students have been working on creating poems about themselves, and some of them expressed an interest in shape/concrete poems.  They were so proud!  I borrowed the design method from my dad who creates beautiful shape/concrete poem sonnets.  He fills in the shape with a single letter and then works in the actual design.  For example, for a triangle or side of a  tree:





And then:



emerald work.

A heavenly creation!

Have some fun with your own shape poems!

Thankful Thursday: Found!, Sunny Coworker, Emotional Challenges, and Art


I am organized but not perfectly neat.  I like to say: “Ask me for something, and I can find it for you — but give me 5 minutes.”  The car, the kitchen table, and the office are areas that tend to build up a bit until I freak out and go on a cleaning rampage, and losing something can speed up that process.  Unfortunately, I may also lose my mind; it’s like I have a fragile but functional Jenga organizational system, and if you pull a block out, my sense of sanity comes crashing down.  I was missing 4 items, and suddenly I needed them.  They were my Dreamer’s Dictionary, and my 3 CDs of intuitive reports – Past Life, Health Analysis, and Past Life Crossing.  I needed the dictionary for a creative art project I was to complete tonight at the school.  I needed the Past Life Crossing CD to lend to a classmate for her creative project.  I found the book in my office, and the 3 CDs were actually in the car, stuck between the seats.  Order is restored.  The world is right again.

Sunny Coworker

My coworkers are awesome.  It is truly the best, best part of my job.  And I am so grateful to the School of Metaphysics for reaching me to find friends everywhere because now I am privileged to know some beautiful people.  Today I highlight a coworker who calls himself a pessimist and cynical — and maybe he is — but who somehow always brightens my day.  Today I was struggling through another bout of emotional turmoil, and he picked up on it immediately and commented on it, saying I was either sad or angry, based on the reddish hue of my face. (I insisted it could have been sunburn but was impressed nonetheless.) I confided I was working through some things, and he offered sympathy.  And that made all the difference in the world: my light venting and his matching empathy.  So often I’m amazed how simple interactions with others can flipflop my mood from depression to joy in a matter of seconds.

Emotional Challenges

I still feel like the world is ending when I go though my emotional roller coasters.   In the past I would want to have some wine.  I would want to have a candy bar.  I would want someone to comfort me and take care of me.  Since I have given up alcohol and am trying to cut back on the vending machine — and the machine wouldn’t accept my taped dollar anyway — and I’m trying to be more self-sufficient — I’ve felt my emotions more keenly and haven’t known what to do with them.  Sometimes I just want them to go away!  But beneath all the turmoil today I recognized a sense of gratitude.  Because of my studies, I now know that strong emotions are signals of potential lessons.  The pangs are growing pangs, and I do want to grow and learn.  Today I recognized that my emotional reaction toward another was actually frustration with myself, which I worked on rectifying.  And in the second case, I needed to express myself and make sure I didn’t “give” with resentment, and I was successful in expressing myself to a receptive classmate. (Yay for metaphysical peeps!)


I’ve been wanting, wanting, wanting to create something artistic, to draw something.  But I could not get myself to do it.  When my teacher told us to create with a group, I saw my chance to play.  One of my classmates had the idea of making an illustrated dream dictionary, and I put it into action.  4 of us students picked symbols we’d been seeing in our dreams recently, wrote down the symbolism, and created a picture to go with it.  It felt amazing to finally create images with colors, and I was just as amazed at the wealth of knowledge of the students with me.  I find it kind of amusing — and very humbling — how much I learn from the students who are in earlier lessons than I am.  I guess it goes to show how unique we are as individuals.  Things that I’m struggling with as an individual may already be strengths in another.  We all have our talents, and we are all moving on our own paths at different rates.

What Do I Want to Do?

Image courtesy of Witthaya Phonsawat /

Image courtesy of Witthaya Phonsawat /

I find I want to write. When I think about what I want to do, what I REALLY want to do – it is to write, and sing, and dance. And create things. This is what I WANT to do. I want to be outdoors and soaking up the light, with my arms outstretched so that the sun will reach down to me, lifting me into the cradle of its warmth and love. This is what I want. To be a child of the light, in a sundress, with huge, vibrant flowers — a gleeful little girl.  I so want to play.  I will be that little girl again, full of innocence again, in my flowery sundress, ready to fly.

Imagine All the People. . .


I finally finished my inspirational people collage of people who I admire and wish to emulate in some way.  Some have an amazing spiritual vibration.  Many have been courageous.  Some are just ridiculously talented and creative.  (And I have one superhero on there.  I squeezed him on since I am focusing on emotions, and he is the epitome of released emotion!)  I have some renaissance people on there like DaVinci (a literal renaissance man!) and Shel Silverstein, who is famous for his children’s poetry and books, was first a cartoonist and was also a song writer (He wrote “Boy Named Sue”!)  Ginger Rogers was a talented actress (Check out Monkey Business!), as well as a wonderful dancer.  Patricia Polacco restored famous pieces of art for museums before she came a children’s book writer and artist.   And Steve Martin is a comedian, actor, novelist, singer, dancer (if we call that dancing! :-)) ,and banjo player!  (If they can do it all, why not me?)

I’m sure there are many others that I could have included and that I’ve only glimpsed the surface of those that I’ve chosen!  (Also, my friends and family aren’t on there, but they are also my heroes!)  Here are my inspirations, from top left across to bottom right: Eleanor Roosevelt, Anne Frank, Carmen Lomas Garza, Gilda Radner, Patricia Polacco, Steve Martin, Linda Ronstadt, Kyle Gray, Ben Kingsley, Sojourner Truth, Jane Goodall, Malala, Robin Williams, Wayne Dyer, Nikola Tesla, Malcolm X, Emma Thompson, Mother Teresa, Leonardo DaVinci, Kate Winslet, Georgia O’Keefe, Nelson Mandela, Ellen DeGeneres, St. Francis of Assissi, Mary (Mejugorje appearance) , Carrie Fisher, Tom Hanks, John Lennon, Diane Keaton, Tina Fey, Pink, Morgan Freeman, Evo Morales, Jesus, Buddha, Ayaan Hirsi, Ali, Jennifer Hudson, Enya, la Virgen de Guadalupe, Dolores Huerta, Deepak Chopra, Jaime Escalante, Jane Curtin, Hugo Chavez, Danny Kaye, Ginger Rogers, Harriet Tubman, Erin Gruwell, Gandhi, Stephen King, Chief Joseph, Dustin Hoffman, Bnejamin Franklin, Jim Gaffigan, Shirley Temple, Justin Timberlake, the Hulk, Frida Kahlo, Benny Goodman, Betty Williams, Harold Ramis, JRRawling, Marianne Williamson, Kevin Kline, Jimmy Carter, Hillary Swank, Diane Lane, and Bill Cosby.

Who goes on your inspirational people poster?

All-You-Can-Eat-Buffet. . . of Topics

I asked Brian what another word for “smorgasbord” is — hence the title.  Brian informs me that I haven’t written a blog in 5 days.  And that I need to blog.  I’ve had inspiration this week, but I just haven’t acted on it.

So, here are the topics that haven’t yet made it to my blog:

1) Love and Gratitude . . .  and Water   The True Power of Water by Masaru Emoto — fascinating book for my metaphysics class about how words can influence water.

2) Complaint-Free!A Complaint Free World by Will Bowen — the next book I’m reading for my metaphysics class.  It had me at “purple bracelets.”. Tangible reminders to aid in the consciousness of our thoughts?  Great concept!

3) More Calories; More Exercise!  I’m adjusting to my changing schedule, the changing weather, and my changing excuses, and I’m concerned I haven’t been taking in enough calories.  I also haven’t been exercising enough.  Last Tuesday I got in a 38-mile bike ride (awesome!) but I haven’t gotten a good workout since.  I’ve gotta make it a priority.

4) New Top 10 I’d like to tweak my Top 10 list a bit from my last post.

5) Inspiring Art I really enjoyed the Coursera Art Course that is just finishing up this week.  I finished up watching the videos, and I was amazed by what I learned.  I didn’t think I liked contemporary/modern art, but I do!  (At least, the parts I learned about from the class.)  The class gave me some great ideas of some art projects I might try.

6) Busy, Busy, Busy Besides becoming more conscious of whether my thoughts are negative or positive, I’m becoming more aware of my incessant business, not matter where I find myself in life.  I’m working on getting to the root of this and turning my perception around.

7) Deceptively Dark Book Club Books It’s “light” summer reading, so why do I feel agitated/depressed?

8) Precious Moments Those moments when the world stays still for you, and you experience perfection.  (Not the figurines.)

And. . . that’s it for now. (I did it!) Time for bed. 🙂

10 Most Wanted List

IMG_0176Part of my exercises for The School of Metaphysics education include a “10 Most Wanted” list of things that I really want for myself.  This list can fluctuate (as the person changes), but this is what I have right now and how I’m progressing on each one:

These are numbered by importance, starting with #1 as most important.

1. Play time. This one has been the most difficult for me and the one I want the most.  I’m always thinking about what I need to do work-wise, and I’m not giving myself enough time to play.  I’ve found that I even try to structure my playtime!  But what’s helping is noticing ways that I “play” throughout the day that I may not even have been aware of.  I heard from somewhere that I need to play more with little children.  I think that’s true.  I also think I need to just sit down and rock out old school with some coloring books and My Little Ponies, partying like it’s 1985.

2. Art time. Ah, just as elusive.  And this one I tend to structure.  I’m still technically taking that art class from Coursera, but I’ve danced around it because it seems like a huge time commitment and a lot of work.  My plan is to veer away from the structure of the class and just dabble.  Watch the videos that interest me and pick a project that feels doable and just PLAY.  Back to play again. 🙂  Notice I’ve given these two spots top priority.  And they are STILL a challenge.

3. Sacred Space. This means I’m trying to keep the spaces that I’m in looking nice, i.e. home, work, and car.  I started with my car and cleaned out everything extraneous — I left a basket/purse with tutoring stuff in there and my sunglasses — and then I dusted and vacuumed.  Much better.  Then I cleaned up the desk space at work where I tutor.  Much better.  The house has been more of a challenge.  I’ve reorganized the main floor space.  The kitchen table is now my official play and workspace.  My end table is organized with magazine holders.  The kitchen counter stays clean, the dishes are less out-of-control, and I’m keeping up with the litterbox on a daily basis.  My next big project is the office.  The floor of the office is clean, and my shelves are fine, but I’ve got to wade through all of my papers.  I want to go through old files and then file the new stuff.  I may have more paperwork to work with this year, so I want to make sure my organizational system is already in place.  And then there’s cleaning the rest of the house.  I need to come up with some system/habit to maintain overall cleanliness of the house: dusting, defurring, vacuuming, washing the kitchen floor, wiping down surfaces, washing the wood floor, vacuuming stairs and upstairs, cleaning the bathroom, sweeping the basement, etc.  And then there’s also the difficulty in sharing space and involving your partner in your efforts. . .

4. $2500 a month.  This one is the hardest one for me to even think about, and not just because I’m in the midst of transition and honing in on the job direction I’m actually taking next, but because I’m concerned that more money possibly = more work, and that conflicts with my numbers 1 and 2, and probably a lot of the rest of my list.  Regardless, I’m pretty tight with my budget right now — squeezed thin, really — and I want to be able to travel more, donate more, and generally do more of the things on my list.  So, I’m keeping my eyes on the prize, and dealing with the queasy feeling in my stomach.

5. Enlightenment. I feel that I am meant for something big.   I’m not sure what that is yet, but I want to make a huge difference.  I want to rock the socks of this world.  And now that I’m typing this, I feel like I’ve gotten off course.  BUT, they say that you can lead others by example (like St. Francis) So, I want to become enlightened so that others can also become enlightened.  And I’m doing this through the School of Metaphysics.  And also by trying not to multi-task, working on staying present.

6. Work clothes. I had a post some time ago about certain garments that were just not comfortable for me.  I have yet to solve that problem.  I have gotten some helpful advice that I eventually intend to follow-up on that will however inevitably end up costing great expense.  (See #4.)  Also, I’ve been wanting to go to Goodwill for sometime to beef up my spring work clothes.  My pants and skirts are sufficient (although I don’t like wearing the black pants.  I don’t know how, but black attracts 10 times as much cat fur as any other color.  Or else the other colors just camouflage it.  I shudder at the thought.)  But, anyway, most of my tops are long-sleeved.  And I don’t have a lot that will work with my skirts.  I also badly need a pair of summer shoes, but I will be forced to do some specific department store shopping for those because of my narrow, flat feet. (Again, see #4.)

7. Etsy skirts. My super awesome students/families from my previous employment gave me some generous gifts, so I finally used them to buy some Etsy skirts (which I feel more comfortable buying from than from department stores).  The skirts are gorgeous, and I’m super-excited. (I spent hours pouring over the site to pick the ones I liked best.)  So, you may think I should take this off my list, then, right?  I’ve decided I like having it on there.  It will take some time before the skirts actually make it to me anyway, and by that time I may be able to afford more! 🙂

8. Fish tank. One day when I walked into the pet store to get food and litter I saw a fish tank display and decided I wanted one.  I had a ten gallon back when I was a kid, and I really enjoyed having fish.  I actually cleared off our kitchen counter to make the perfect little spot for it under the cabinets (making it less accessible for the cats).  I’m thinking a 30-gallon tank will fit in there, so now I’m just waiting for the right opportunity.

9. Mortgage paid. I hate being in debt.  I suppose it’s fairly normal, but I still don’t think it’s ideal, so I want that mortgage paid off.  Circumstances aren’t the best for it right now, but I intend to get it done.

10. Bike 100 miles (in one day). I’m pretty excited about this one.  I put it low on my list because I won’t actually do it until September when I participate in the Door County Century.  However, I have a systematic plan to get there, and I’m already up to 38 miles in one day from when Brian and I biked yesterday.  (Last year I biked 70 miles in the Door County Century, so this goal is reasonable for me.)

So, these are my “10 Most Wanted.”  I keep the multicolored list on an index card in my purse and look at them at least once a day.  What would you put on your list?

Collage Project: Me


Weeks ago I started an art class.  I got into it a week late, so I combined the first two projects into one.  The first was supposed to be about me.  The second was supposed to be surrealist in nature. So, this is both.

This is me, mostly my sleeping me, but some images are from my consciousness.  The mask in the middle is meant to be my face. The mystery behind my face was inspired by the mirror exercises I was completing for the School of Metaphysics.  Through my experiences and learning I came to realize that I didn’t know who I really was.   The eyes are blank because I do not know the true self that lies behind them.

Much of the rest is my dreams.  My school dreams, especially the nightmares that I’m late for class, lost, can’t find my locker, etc.  The cat dreams: the lions of my childhood and the cats of my adult life.  There are 3 because I’d seen three cats lined up in a row together in one of my recent dreams.  I’d recently had many dreams about parking lots and had sometimes been driving, often struggling for control of my car.  And I’ve had many, many house dreams, especially of moving or of being in my childhood home.  I’d also had a few moon dreams spread out over my lifetime.  Most recently I’d dreamt that I was in a museum, studying a moon exhibit.

Behind the eyes of the mask are symbols from waking life and the dream world. Blood drips from behind my mask onto the scene of a beach from one of my dreams. A shadowy figure lies across the beach — a murdered female — who symbolizes a changed aspect of my conscious self.  The shadowy people spread throughout the collage symbolize strangers in my dream.  (I’ve had many lately!)  They represent unknown aspects of myself; males — subconscious elements, females — conscious elements.   Then, through the other eye we see  an egret, a beautiful animal symbol of my waking life that I believe is a spirit guide, reminding me to have hope in the future, faith in myself, and to watch for opportunity. (One just flew alongside my car today as I was just minutes from my house!).  Another of my frequent messengers and a relative of the egret — the blue heron — can be seen in the top right corner near the menacing funnel cloud, another symbol of change.  Finally, the girl in the upper left-hand corner is me, symbolized by the mask across her face.  She is topless — as I am in my dreams —  symbolizing taking risks and feeling vulnerable.  The journal behind her is my actual dream journal where I have recorded narratives for the many images from this picture.

The rest are symbols and messages from my waking life.  The “66” and “11” are numbers from messages I’ve received in the real world from my angels/spirit guides.  The 11 also is my birthdate numerology number, a master number that means “Illuminator,” which is also symbolized by the lantern just above it.  Light has been a constant in my life, an interest as a child “See?  Ight!”, part of a prayer I learned from my mother, and the first thing that popped into my head when prompted to state my life purpose during a life purpose workshop: “light. . .  bringer of light? I bring the light?”

There is one image that I did not explain.  Did anyone catch it?

I hope I didn’t spoil the fun of analyzing this piece yourselves. 🙂  I thoroughly enjoyed making this collage — it is one of the few moments in my life lately when I’ve effortlessly given my direct attention (without even having that intention!).  Now that I’ve finally posted this, I intent to continue my creations.

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