Saturday, March 31, 2012

Switch Off for Earth Hour 2012

Tonight at 8:30, we 'switched off' all the lights, gathered around the table that was filled with lit candles and played some games! We were joining a global event as we participated in Earth Hour.

More than 5,200 cities and towns in 135 countries worldwide switched off their lights for Earth Hour 2011, sending a powerful message for action on climate change. It also ushered in a new era with members going Beyond the Hour to commit to lasting action for the planet. Without a doubt, it’s shown how great things can be achieved when people come together for a common cause. -
I remember last year, Earth Hour happened to fall on my surprise birthday party that Beth had planned for me. So as guests arrived to the house, they were greeted by a world of streamers, balloons, tie dye and candles! Not a light was on. We lined the hallway with tea lights so people could make their way to the kitchen to refill their refreshments. There were oodles of candles on the kitchen table, the bathroom, and the living room where we all sat around on the floor. A few people kicked up a fuss about not being able to turn on the tv, or music, but that soon faded as we found 'new' ways to entertain ourselves. I remember us looking out the windows to see how many other homes had turned off their lights. At that time I was living in the MUN area, and was amazed at how dark that area of St. John's was. So proud of my neighbourhood!

Where I live right now, it's hard to spy on the neighbours to see if they too were participating in Earth Hour. The one house I could see, across the way, seemed to have every single light on! I was pretty tempted to march right over with my candle in hand, and educate them a little before requesting they too shut out their lights. I stopped myself though after a few moments of rational thinking, and returned to the kitchen table where a pile of games were waiting to be played. Haha.

Here are a few pictures from tonight's celebration.

Did you participate in Earth Hour? Share your stories in the comments below! And remember that even though tonight was a global event, you can have your own Earth Hour any day(s) of the year. I try to be very 'light-wise' in my nest. If I'm not in the room, there's no need for a light!

Friday, March 30, 2012

An Unexpected Thursday Afternoon

Yesterday I had a very productive start to my day, and I decided to take time to enjoy the afternoon. I met up with a friend of mine, Jackie, for a lunch date. I love being in that woman's company. She has a very intriguing soul, with stories and a wealth of knowledge that I just soak up every time I see her.  She also just so happens to be my first customer of 2012! Yay!! She purchased 'Optimistic Puppet' a painting I had created for an ongoing art show at Bella's Cafe and Bistro. The timing could not be more perfect for you see, I have a photography course coming up in May, a Christmas present from Beth, and my super awesome camera I purchased years ago has seen far better days and barely turns on anymore. There was a camera on sale that I had done some research on and well...everything falls into place. I knew I would invest the money from my paintings back into art supplies, and though this means my painting is put on hold for a little longer, I can finally get back to my other passion, photography! Oh happy days! During our conversation, we spoke of the four elements and how each plays a role in our lives. Inspired by this, I decided it was time to reconnect with nature.

With my new camera in hand, I headed straight for the bird sanctuary. As I entered the park, I asked the universe to guide me to new experiences. I have explored these trails a handful of times now since moving here, but never really took the time to truly soak up all of my surroundings. With a few hours all to myself, I gave myself permission to just follow my heart and enjoy this leisurely stroll. Well, the universe must have listened, for all of Mother Nature's critters came out to pose for me as I tested out my  camera for the first time, and that was only the beginning. 

Only a few short minutes into my adventure, a little squirrel greeted me on the path. He was the first of many to come. I was so happy. I love those little animals, and I finally had the opportunity to photograph them. I was amazed at how long they stayed  out to keep me company.I think they should rename this place the squirrel sanctuary. During my two and half hour journey, I only came across one bird. I have no idea what he is (picture below) but my goodness he was handsome. As I continued on my way through the woods, a strange curiosity sparked inside me, directing me off the trail a little. As I made my way up a small hill, I noticed what at first looked like a very old book. Upon closer inspection it was a small box. I poked it with a stick and heard the contents inside rattle. My imagination started making up all sorts of stories. I won't lie, I was a little bit scared. I carefully opened the sides of the container (if anyone had of been watching this would have been a very entertaining sight for sure) and using a stick I found I slowly opened the lid, standing back a nice few feet from the mysterious box. What a surprise I had! My inner GPS had discovered a Geocaching  treasure!! I wasn't prepared for this moment at all. With nothing to leave behind, I decided to just sign my name in the log that was provided, and then returned the box as I had found it. I was so excited.

I made my way back to the trail and continued on my adventure. The woods can make some strange noises at times. I watched as a tree rocked back and forth in the wind, creating music as it rubbed against another tree which had fallen. It was like watching nature play it's own fiddle haha. As I made my way to 'Narnia' - my favorite place at the bird sanctuary, I caught the blur of a rather big, greyish white rabbit dart past me. I tried to follow him but he was way too fast for my legs.

I had finally made my way around the pond and back to the entrance. With my camera turned off and my hands burrowed deep into my pockets in hopes to warm them up, I was not prepared for the little creature who was ready and waiting to say goodbye to me. Luckily he was quite the ham and stayed out on his perch for a few pictures before hiding in the leaves again. I am so glad I chose to spend some time out there, and so thankful that I was able to capture so many pictures.

As for this Geocaching, I am hooked! I have already searched for other treasures and i'm hoping to get out the weekend and try it. I know it requires a GPS-enabled device, but I think it will be just as fun trying to stumble across them, like I did with my first one! I'm also loving how things are falling into place for me. I took the advice from my last Thoughtful Tuesday post about the Power of a Made-up Mind , along with some others and really channeled my energy into positive and productive  thoughts, and actions. I guess it's working!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Thoughtful Tuesdays : The Power of a Made-up Mind

Oh I am taking today's blog excerpt straight to the bank! How often do I forget the true power of my own mind.

The following is an exact excerpt from the book Listening To Your Inner Voice by Douglas Bloch. I in no way possess any ownership of the following. I am simply sharing the thoughts, expressions and words of an author who has inspired me.

The Power of a Made-up Mind
Life responds not to what we wish or even to what we desire. Life responds to a made-up mind. The moment that you definitely commit yourself, then the Universe moves, too. Doors open for you that normally would have remained closed. A whole stream of events unfolds which leads to the desired outcome. 
One Christmas a woman wanted to take her children to see a performance of The Nutcracker ballet. Unfortunately, she did not have the money to purchase the tickets. Nonetheless, she was totally committed to seeing the show. She visualized the outcome  and affirmed that she would attend that evening's performance. Two hours before the show, a friend who worked as a tour guide called. He had just arrived in town to see The Nutcracker with his tour, but three clients could not attend. Would she and her children like to go?
Many would call this coincidence. Those who understand the workings of the Divine mind know that the woman's 100 percent intention to be at the show drew to her the good that she desired. The same can be true for you once you employ the power of a made-up mind.


         1. I now tap the power of a made-up mind.
         2. I choose  my goals and commit to them wholeheartedly.
         3. When I make up my mind, the Universe moves to support me. 
         4. I believe in my dream.
         5. My momentum is increasing every day. 
         6.  Your Own _____________________.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Thoughtful Tuesdays : Persistence

Hello Spring! The beautiful season of rebirth has arrived, bringing with it a sense of renewal. Though winter has many glorious aspects to it, there is nothing as refreshing as Spring time. Since the clocks 'sprung' ahead an hour, I can feel my need to hibernate coming to an end. Yahoo!

Yet again, the timing of today's post from Bloch's book ties in so well with my current state of living.  I have been putting effort into accomplishing my goals for this new year. And while I have two goals successfully on their way, there are other areas/goals that seem, well, stuck in the mud. With the arrival of a new season I hope to exercise the affirmations of Bloch, particularly numbers two and four from today's excerpt. Instead of sinking into the inviting black hole of  insecurities and self doubt, I will give myself permission to accept the obstacles that have found their way into my life while maintaining persistence to achieve my goals and dreams. Just as the last excerpt from this book spoke of the Divine Partnership , I will not just sit and wish my paintings will sell, I will make greater efforts to increase sales and work on marketing and in turn the reward of new supplies and new paintings will come. I will not just dream of teaching art classes, I will be persistent in creating concepts, exploring the communities interest, and committing to a venue. I will use this concept in other areas of my life as well, all while maintaining a balance of hard work and fun play!

The following is an exact excerpt from the book Listening To Your Inner Voice by Douglas Bloch. I in no way possess any ownership of the following. I am simply sharing the thoughts, expressions and words of an author who has inspired me.


Consider these words of Calvin Coolidge: "Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is filled with educated derelicts. Persistence and determination are alone omnipotent. 'Press on!' has been and always will be the answer to every human problem."
Coolidge was right. In the successful pursuit of a vision, persistence always makes the difference. Colonel Sanders approached 1,094 restaurants before he found someone who would try his recipe for fried chicken.  Thomas Edison made over 2,000 attempts before he invented the light bulb. Abraham Lincoln failed in two businesses and lost five elections before he became president.
 The ability to persevere in the face of adversity takes a special kind of faith. It's easy to get discouraged when obstacles appear. If you are in such a situation, know that time is on your side. Time plus sustained effort always produce results. After waiting thirty-three years to win the world championship, a coach was asked, "Was it worth the wait?" "Absolutely," he replied. "In fact, the long delay actually made the victory sweeter."


         1. I am patient and preserving.
         2. Every setback makes me more determined to reach my goal.
         3. My persistence and determination work miracles. 
         4. My greatest glory is in the rising every time I fall. 
         5. With every delay, there's a blessing on it's way.
         6. Your Own ___________________.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Growing a Green Thumb

Well it looks like spring decided to go back into hiding. Despite the snow and the cold temperatures I am choosing to stay in my spring like mood. I turned on the jazz station, took out my pen and paper and started writing down ideas for my garden. What vegetables, fruits, and herbs I would love to see in my garden. Once that list (that is probably longer than Santa's naughty and nice list combined!) was finished, I started researching companion gardening. I had lots to learn. I'll be planting a fair bit of basil considering it repels mosquitoes and there are A LOT of mosquitoes here. Planting tomatoes near carrots, garlic, or basil protects them from red spiders. At the risk of sounding like a nerd bird, I think that's pretty  neat beans. I found this site to be helpful in figuring out the companionship of vegetables and herbs. (Click here for another site I researched)

Now it's on the exciting stuff! For the past two or three weeks, every time I step out back,  I can't help but get lost in a dreamworld of ideas for the garden. I know exactly where it will be (ok, I knew exactly where it would be until I discovered two nights ago that place is nothing but sand, so now I set a new location that has rich soil for growing) the only problem is designing the garden. I no longer need to spend money on a raised garden bed (yippee!) so time to create a new idea for the lay out. Oh words can't describe how excited I am. I'm going to sketch out a few ideas. I want this to be more than a square patch of dirt and veggies. I envision it being a spot where I can also go and meditate, do some sketching, and enjoy the colours and aromas that will be growing.

January 1 I set four main goals for myself. I already am doing well with one of those goals (to be in more art shows, and I have actively been in two, and by default ended up in a third) and now I'm making progress with my garden. I just can't wait for the weather to warm up so I get more hands on with it. Although, I think I'm going to need some heavy duty gardening gloves to help 'protect' me from the little creatures that play and live in the dirt. EW. Possibly something I'm going to have to get over in a hurry haha.

Hope you are working towards your goals, if you set any for the new year. If you did, post them in the comments below. I would love to hear about your goal accomplishments. Or your experience with gardening.

Well that's all folks! 

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Thoughtful Tuesdays : The Divine Partnership

I love this book so much! Each Tuesday I am amazed at how well the message in the affirmation reflects something that I can apply in my daily life. Hope you find the same!

The following is an exact excerpt from the book Listening To Your Inner Voice by Douglas Bloch. I in no way possess any ownership of the following. I am simply sharing the thoughts, expressions and words of an author who has inspired me.
*Feel free to change the word 'God' to fit your belief system. I directly quoted Bloch's work.

The Divine Partnership
There exists a Divine partnership between God and man that is wonderfully depicted in the following story. A young minister was driving through the countryside when he spotted a farmer tilling 40 acres of magnificent farmland. The minister pulled over and addressed the farmer, "God has certainly blessed you with a wonderful piece of land." the farmer replied, "Yes, but you should have seen the mess it was when God had it to Himself!"
A well-known entrepreneur was asked the secret of her business success. She answered, "I pray as if everything depends on God, but act as if everything depends on me." It is not enough just to pray for and affirm our good. Like the farmer and businesswoman, we must also take concrete steps to make our dreams a reality. 
Working together, we and spirit form an unbeatable combination. Neither can succeed without the other. Just as nature provided the land but needed the farmer to till the soil, spirit needs to bring about heaven on earth. Let us work together as Divine partners to fulfill this promise.  


         1. I see myself in partnership with the Infinite.
         2.  When I do my share, God does His. 
         3. As I take responsibility for my life, the Universe answers my requests.
         4. As I follow my bliss, I attract whatever supports I need. 
         5. Working with spirit, all things become possible. 
         6. You Own _______________________.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Spring Is In The Air

Oh how I love spring time! I know it's not officially spring for another two weeks, but my word, that sun has some warmth to it. I spent the morning playing with my little tater tot nephew and his new puppy ( a birthday surprise from his G-mama), making bunny cookies, and taking him out for a drive in his Power Wheels Jeep. We had so much fun!
Introducing Polly Jayne!

With the sun shining and the air much warmer than it has been, I packed a snack and headed out to the Bird Sanctuary for an adventure around the pond. It took me nearly twice as long as it usually does with all the ice and obstacles. It definitely was an adventure! The birds were out singing, the squirrels were popping out of trees, and I think I found a deer ;) (look at the photos below). After being a big hermit this winter it sure felt great to get out in nature again.

It's a deer! It's a tree! It's a deer tree!

I hope you all are creating yourself a wonderful weekend and take a moment to enjoy the wonders around you!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Happy International Women's Day!!

Today marks a day of empowerment for women. In a world where society has broken us down and the media has dehumanized us, it is now in our hands to be the change we want and need to see. The most wonderful part is how easy it is to create these changes. No matter if you are a man or a woman, a child or an adult, YOU have the opportunity to change the world we live in! How exciting is that?

Each year around the world, International Women's Day (IWD) is celebrated on March 8. Thousands of events occur not just on this day but throughout March to mark the economic, political and social achievements of women. -

International Women's Day has been celebrated since the early 1900's. Women began to stand up to the inequality and oppression they faced.   " 1908, 15,000 women marched through New York City demanding shorter hours, better pay and voting rights." (website) . This year the celebration continues with the theme 'Connecting Girls, Inspiring Futures'  and while the United Nations has declared their theme as 'Empower Rural Women – End Hunger and Poverty' , it is encouraged that others create their own themes as well. If you click here you can find various themes from around the world that have been submitted. With over 1542 events planned for IWD, you can select your country and location here to learn what's available near you. 

You can celebrate at home as well, or from your work place. Take a moment to let the women in your life know how much you appreciate them. How proud you are of their accomplishments. Be aware of how you speak to and about other women. If you are a woman, take a moment to reflect on the successes you have created in your life, of the milestones you have reached. Be proud of yourself for everything you have overcome in your journeys.

It breaks my heart when I hear women calling other women derogatory names, and how easily these names roll of ftheir tongues during casual conversation. Loose Garments, a blog focused on feminist culture, human rights, and cool women, posted a video created by a 13 year old girl who speaks up about slut shaming. This young woman will make you think twice about your choice of words and is so inspiring. Loose Garments has other must see videos, and their blog posts are always a good read.

I see girls who are afraid to leave their homes until their hair and make up are perfectly done, until the right amount of skin is showing, and the number on the scale is acceptable to popular demand. I see lives being destroyed as women attempt to live up to the impossible expectations forced upon them. Let Lindsay Gemmell inspire you. She is a 23 year old Eating Disorder Recovery Coach,  who is making changes with her passion for life and her unconditional, genuine love for others. She shares her incredibly positive attitude through words of motivation, affirmations and wisdom from experience. "..what does beauty mean to you? Everytime you disagree with the fashion industries idea of "beauty" you are saying YES to LIFE! and when you say yes to accept love, happiness, laughter and JOY into your heart..making you better able to share those qualities with others. True beauty comes from within. When we accept ourselves as we are inside and out, with all of our unique qualities, we will find and be living in TRUE beauty! just as every woman deserves to."

If we, as individuals started to change the way we talk about and speak to women, if we, as individuals started to change our expectations of the women in our lives, if we, as individuals started to  challenge society telling us to be competitive with other women, if we as individuals started to say it is wrong to objectify women, then we, as individuals would be making changes in the world, and through these actions we can have a positive influence on people who we may interact with, and this may start a beautiful chain reaction. 

So today, on International Women's Day, how are you going to celebrate? Who are you going to talk to?

If you have a story about a woman who inspires you, please share it in the comments below. I want to hear their stories!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Thoughtful Tuesdays : All Assignments Are Equal

I just love today's post from Bloch's book. Even though some of the wording and vocabulary choice isn't a reflection of my beliefs, the overall message leaves me covered in goosebumps as it is a solid reminder of how I have been trying to live my life, and has gently helped me refocus and given me the motivation to get back to that way of thinking and living. Since leaving the 'safety' of my home and moving to a new place, it has been far too easy to sway from my journey of self discovery and attempt to 'fit in' to my new surroundings. This has come with a cost, and at times have left me feeling as though I have only cheated myself by not speaking up when I strongly disagreed with something being said, or have said or done something else that is not a true reflection on myself all for the cause of wanting to 'belong'. My inner voice has been ignored far too many times since moving here, and I today's excerpt from Douglas Bloch's book is a wonderful motivation to start being true to myself again. I hope you too are able to gain from this.

The following is an exact excerpt from the book Listening To Your Inner Voice by Douglas Bloch. I in no way possess any ownership of the following. I am simply sharing the thoughts, expressions and words of an author who has inspired me.

All Assignments Are Equal

As each of us get in touch with the specific ways to serve, it is tempting to judge the importance of our work by comparing it to someone else's achievements. And when that person or group earns more money, receives more praise and recognition, or influences more people, our efforts may feel diminished in stature. 
 But the truth of the matter is that the spiritual path is not a "numbers game." Ways of serving cannot be compared to one another. In spirit's eyes, each mission us just as important as the next. All assignments are equal. 
A director of a school for emotionally handicapped children says about her work, "My job is ton serve with joy and to let spirit work through me. It is up to God, not me, to determine how many kids I actually reach. Ultimately, the numbers are not important; for if only one soul's life has been changed through this work, it has been worth it."
Like this woman, your job is to discover what your purpose is - and then fulfill it. It does not  matter how small your contribution may seem. You have a special part to play that no one else can duplicate, In God's eyes, all assignments are equal.

   1. I appreciate and acknowledge myself for the contribution I am making.  
   2. I appreciate and acknowledge others for the contributions they are making. 
   3. I am exactly where I need to be.
   4. I am guided by spirit to my divinely designed calling.
   5. I find intrinsic pleasure and satisfaction in the work I do.
   6. Your Own __________________________________.