Month: January 2014

Fanning the coals – to get the flame

Some days I have no idea what I’m going to blog about. On those days I get more and more nervous as the day rolls on.

Today was no different. I came home from work and had no idea what my last blog of the month would be. No spectacular finale for the Zero to Hero Challenge. What was I going to do.

My anxiety kind of took a back seat though as I walked into a cold house not looking forward to cleaning out the wood stove and making room for some more logs. The wood stove had been pretty much going non-stop for a couple of days and now the ashes were really piling up, so as I got digging away with two attention starved dogs pawing at my feet who had been cooped up all day I realized there were still some good coals going, so I dug around them.

After throwing the bucket of ashes outside in a 3 foot snow bank which I’m sure my garden was under, I came back in and proceeded to put a couple of logs in the wood stove. Once the dogs had been outside for a run, feed and patted sufficiently to constitute a caring owner I noticed that my logs had not caught yet.

Frustrated, tired and hungry still with my coat and boots on, I tromped over to the wood stove opened the door and took a closer look inside. I decided I needed to fan the coals, so I picked up our antique bellows (which I purchased at a garage sale and my husband managed to ruin by setting the ends on fire) did I mention that these were precious , anyway I digress, I started to fan the coals, happy the bellows still worked,  fanning and fanning, while little ashes floated up into my face. I cursed as I fanned, thinking THIS IS RIDICULUS and  then POOF!

Just like that, flames shot out from under the logs and I had my fire going, and POOF just like a lighting bolt, I realized what I had been doing and came to discover my BEST BLOG OF ALL!

My Zero to Hero Challenge has been about fanning the coals. All this time, day in and day out for 30 days every time I blogged, every time someone commented, every time someone followed, every time I enhanced my site, the coals were being fanned, and finally, hopefully the fire has started.

I needed to see that visual image of what hard work does, no matter how much I want to be a writer or an artist or a traveler or a crafter, if I don’t fan the coals they’ll be no fire.

So THANK YOU to everyone that helped me to light my fire, thank you for the follows and the comments and Zero to Hero for all the great advice, it has been an honor working with you.

Mucho Gracias,

The 50 yr old KID

Testing out the wordpress app

Testing out the word press app today on my iPhone – one more day to go for the zero to hero challenge , it’s been a challenge to stick with something this long as not everyday I feel like blogging. Im looking forward to blogging just once a week , and spending more time on the subject , hopefully this has helped me to build a good foundation to continue .

Reasons to go back to Paris

Why do I need to go back to Paris…… because there’s so much more to do:

discover more cool vehicles

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Go inside places like this and find out what they’re all about

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 do more sightseeing

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buy more deserts, or seafood!

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visit more Churches

collage church

get more decorating ideas

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sit in an outdoor cafe

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visit more Galleries

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get my portrait done

art collage

AND DO MORE SHOPPING!

writing shop

and last but not least – to leave my mark!

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Right Brain vs Left Brain

One of my all time favorite writer’s is Julia Cameron author of  The Artist Way.

I have the companion book to this called the Artist Date Book. I’ve only ever skimmed the date book, but just having it nearby me is enough of a reminder that I need to take action.

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The Artist’s Date Book – by Julia Cameron

With a blogging brain that’s a little empty, I decided my new approach would be to take a book that I had bought last summer at a garage sale called Landscape Meditations by Elizabeth Mowry and try paint a picture. Since we’re in a Polar Vortex right now, I choose a snowy field thinking I could best relate to this picture.

book copyThe original picture by Elizabeth Mowry

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My Picture

So hopefully I have activated my “Right” side enough to get a blog out today

 

Some right brain/left brain Google facts: but apparently this is all myth now a days according to About.com Psychology

“The Right Brain

According to the left-brain, right-brain dominance theory, the right side of the brain is best at expressive and creative tasks. Some of the abilities that are popularly associated with the right side of the brain include:

  • Recognizing faces
  • Expressing emotions
  • Music
  • Reading emotions
  • Color
  • Images
  • Intuition
  • Creativity

The Left Brain

The left-side of the brain is considered to be adept at tasks that involve logic, language and analytical thinking. The left-brain is often described as being better at:

  • Language
  • Logic
  • Critical thinking
  • Numbers
  • Reasoning

After Dinner Sorbet -Yummy

My new favorite treat from Costco – Island Way Sorbet variety pack

photo (17)There are 3 different flavors, Pineapple, Pina Colada, & Mango

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It is so yummy, and only 120 calories with 26% Vitamin C

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and it’s a product of South Africa,

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The Mango flavor comes in an orange shell, and the Pina Colada in a Coconut shell

I can assure you, they all taste fruity silky smooth and smell like you just cracked open a fresh piece of fruit

A two Post day

Why two blogs in one day – what!

Yesterday I didn’t have time to blog so today I’m making up for it with two blogs  – see “how many teapots do you have”.

It’s kind of cheating I know, after all I did make a commitment to blog everyday for 30 days in the Zero to Hero Challenge.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my 50 years, it’s that sometimes you just have to give yourself a break. Don’t concentrate on the things you didn’t do or couldn’t do, (like staying on your diet) but concentrate on the things that get you where you need to be.

So if I have to “cheat” and write two blogs in one day to stay in the game, than that’s okay with me. Aiming for perfection is something to be admired but the willingness to accept less that perfection is finally perfectly for me!

How many Tea Pots do you have

Trying to stay on budget this week I managed to find this little Oriental style tea pot at my local Goodwill store. It’s very heavy and looks like cast iron, with a wire basket that sits inside.

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Luckily for me I just happen to be at the stockroom doors when the sales lady came out with this little treasure. I followed her over to the housewares department like a panther stocking it’s prey. My eyes glued to her. As soon as she put it down I quickly scooped it up. “Do you know how much this is I asked”. Ten Dollars she said. PERFECT I said, it’s so beautiful. “Do you need a teapot she said” Looking dumb founded I thought to myself, what does that have to do with anything (and yes I do have 3 teapots already I thought silently). Well I’ve always wanted one just like this I said.

Thank goodness I have a budget!

The Itsy Bitsy Spider – What would my book jacket look like

My Book Jacket

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By Colleen Creates

The Blurb;

The Itsy Bitsy Spider carefully, methodically spins a delicate web going unnoticed. Around in circles it moves creating intricate detail, repeating patterns day after day until one day the web is visible to those willing to look in dark places.

The story tells the tale of a young mothers struggle to keep the peace and free her mind from patterns that keep the web strong, but she must be stronger if she is willing to break free and have peace. The web can be broken with the flick of a finger, but is she willing to let go.

(I took this picture some years ago when I got my new camera, I was wondering around the yard one day and noticed this very large spider web under the deck. When I started to edit the picture and uploaded it to Flickr, I thought to myself this would make a really cool book cover, so I gave it a title, “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” This was probably at least 5 years ago long before I ever thought about writing and I never thought I would be blogging about it!)

Daily Prompt: Book Jacket: The Itsy Bitsy Spider

How did you discover Alabama Shakes?

I never should have mentioned it and I’m regretting it already. I’m never gonna get to one of their concerts now! Dang!

I discovered Alabama Shakes when my daughter came into the kitchen one day with her little electronic buddy the I-Pad Mini playing a really cool song. We both starting dancing to the jazzy bluesy  groove instantly, it might have been ‘Always Alright’ or ‘ Hold-on’ I’m not sure.

It’s take a lot to get me to stop midway cleaning or cooking to start dancing, but their songs just come over you, you don’t just listen to them, you feel them.

I’ve never been that much into music, I always thought it was a waste of money to buy an album when you only got one or two good songs, but If I was a younger kid today I would definatley buy the Alabama Shakes Album – they look like this

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I asked my daughter how she even heard of them, I had never heard their music on the radio before. It turned out that a recent movie she saw played one of their songs.

You can’t listen to “Hold-On” without  wanting to get a bottle of whiskey (or white wine) grab a karaoke mic, bob your head and sing in some dingy old Southern bar with a peanut shelled covered wooden floor with a whole bunch of drunk people cheering you on – I hope my daughter doesn’t feel the same way.

My  50 year old kid friend also known as my best buddy recently mentioned that she just discovered them on the David Letterman show and loved them. So I thought maybe there’s other people out there behind the curve like us that would like to discover them as well – and “Always Alright” is an amazing song to blog to, especially with ear phones!

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Why Nantes

Why Nantes, the 6th largest city in France you say? How did I arrive at this place to Blog about today.

Watching one of my favourite T.V. shows about a Pawn Shop in Las Vegas, a customer came in with a first ‘American’ printed edition of the classic science fiction novel by French writer Jules Verne, published originally in 1870 called 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.

I knew nothing about this novel except that it was famous, probably worth a penny or two if it turned out to be ‘the real deal’. (turns out it was worth $12,000 USD because of the condition it was in, which turned out to be fair)  “Most of the first editions were lost in The Great Boston Fire of 1872. Only about 50 copies are thought to currently exist”.

Pawn_Stars_004 (1)Pawn Stars on the History Channel

After hearing about how Jules Verne was able to write about things that didn’t exist back in the 1870’s such as Submarines, News Casts, Solar Sails, Lunar Modules, Video Conferencing, Sky Writing and Tasers, it really makes you wonder how is this possible?

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So after a little research, turns out Jules was born in Nantes France. Maybe this has something to do with it. Maybe this is a magical place where people can see the future.

Nantes  is a city in France, located on the Loire River,  (WOW) named the most livable city in EuropeNantes was named a hub city for innovation. “It holds the title of European Green Capital for its efforts to reduce air pollution, it’s well-managed public transport system and for its biodiversity with 3,366 hectares of green spaces”.

The first tramway in Nantes opened in 1879 and closed in 1958 due to bombing damage during World War II, while the present tramway was re-introduced to the city in 1985.

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Preserved Nantes Compressed air tramcar at the AMTUIR Museum

The first tramway in Nantes was notable for its use of compressed air propulsion pioneering this technology

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 In the 1980s, Nantes became the first city in Europe to re-introduce the present tramway which is notable as the first modern ‘new generation’ tramway to be built.

So maybe people in Nantes can see the future. I think I must investigate in person, hopefully this will be my future!

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