Posts Tagged 'comfort'

Sparks in the gloom…

Life has flowed with a few challenges lately and I've been left gasping for air at times.

I lay there in the middle of one sleepless night and simply did not know what to do to soothe myself. My wisdom said 'Stay still and do nothing.' Then I sensed a lovely dog in spirit on the bed beside me and felt my Gran and her Mum, my Great Gran, close by my side. A feeling of calm settled in and I could let the feelings I had be, just as they were. Breathing in the experiences, breathing out the feelings.

I needed unconditional love, so the next day I asked my heart family if I could borrow their lovely boy, Boris, the German Shepherd. 'Absolutely' was their swift reply and he's coming to stay with me for a week after Easter. ❤

That sparked another idea and I ordered insurance, new wellies and some marketing postcards. Say 'Hello' to Jane's Dog Walking Service. My old flowery wellies have done two years sterling work, so I took my new ones out at lunchtime today and christened them in the sea. I also found some more sea glass and treasure to add to my collection.

My heritage is rich with hand crafts, so it is no surprise that I turn to that for comfort again and again. My lovely buddy Pam and I set off on Friday to a local art gallery, as they were running a Creative Think Tank, with taster sessions on all sorts of crafts being showcased. I had it in my head that I would finally get to have a go at wood carving, which has been a long held dream, and willow basket weaving. You just know this didn’t go to plan don’t you? We had a great time and saw all sorts of wonderful things, while discovering that the basket weaving and wood carving courses were out of our financial reach right now. Then the unexpected happened. I had made a connection with one of the receptionists when we arrived and he was looking after everyone by keeping the whole event flowing. Pam was absorbed trying out a Viking weaving loom and having a great time. I glanced up and Mark came over and said ‘There’s more going on in other rooms Jane, can I show you?’ So off we went and I found myself at a table where a lovely lady was demonstrating rug making with re-cycled materials. I took a seat and Alison let me have a go weaving strips of old t-shirts into hessian and I was right there, in the moment. She showed me what materials to try and what to back the rugs with. The edging stitch that holds it all together is new to me, but my Granny said in my head ‘I can show you that Jane’. I’d discovered a new joy. As I sat at home later, knitting, my creative sparks started to fly. I have been a painter since I can remember when and for the last few years it has stopped ‘talking’ to me. With the rug making I can chalk and ink my design on the hessian and by hooking in re-cycled materials, there is more leeway. It doesn’t have to be precise and as the freedom of this sunk in, well I am sure my heart singing could be heard far and wide.

It’s been dark and raining like ‘billy-ho’ today and then just as I finished my new wellie walk, the sky brightened and the clouds looked as if they had been brushed on the blue.

Creative comforts….

Work is challenging at this time of year and a few days ago I found myself needing comfort from a change of scene at midday. I took off in the car and made my way to a haberdashery store in Birkenhead. Ohhh, the bliss of standing there amidst all the materials, ribbons and yarns and new choices to be made. I came away with an uplifted heart and a bag of lovely soft wool to make Georgie’s next jumper.

Often I find myself suggesting to clients that they find comfort in creativity. They often cry out ‘But I am not creative Jane’. I gently point out that we all create with our days, spaces, meals, communications and actions. The simple act of tidying a drawer, sorting some clothes, organising a space, re-arranging a shelf or even a room can bring comfort. It’s all creativity. We can also be creative with writing, painting, sticking, colouring or making something.

I was blessed to be surrounded by loving, creative women as I grew up and my Mum, both my Grannies and my Great Granny taught my sister and I all the handcrafts. What gifts they bestowed along with rich memories.

There was a lovely blog post recently from Natalie Wordless Wednesday… as she shared the quilts she and her sister were creating. It reminded me of the creative ‘sharings’ with my Mum, my buddy Pam in South Africa, my sister Debs, the knitting girls, Kirsten, lovely Em in New Zealand, special Penn, Nancy downstairs, my sailing buddy Wendy and so many more. All linked by our stories and sharing what we are creating; all linked by loving comfort. ❤

Comfort and kindness……

tom

This is the lovely Tom, who graces the spirit world now, and I was blessed to spend some time with him a few years ago. He would sit beside my laptop as I worked, telling me stories about his day. It was important to keep an eye on him as he loved to sit on the keyboard and had deleted a lot of his Mum’s work that way! He loved my snuggle blanket and found such comfort there, as I did in having his company. ❤

I walked into Remember When this morning for our Thursday knitting group and I felt my shoulders drop and my breathing ease. The tearoom is decorated for Christmas, carols were softly playing and loving souls called out 'Welcome'. Usually we are quite a large group and there is much nattering and knitting too of course. Today was different, as there were only two of us for a while and we were joined by another buddy a bit later. As our friend came in we could see that she was agitated. A pot of tea and toast was placed in front of her as she settled down and started to talk. Within a short space of time her shoulders dropped and she started to breath a lot easier. Loving kindness created space for something magic to happen. In our safe space vulnerable stories were shared and the three of us drew close. Another friend joined us later after her dental appointment and she said 'What is happening here? How did this start?' I smiled at her and replied 'Listening. We have been really listening to each other'. Each of us had tears in our eyes. ❤

Such a sweet planet we walk on, when we walk it with heart….. Jeff Brown

sisters
Exchange your righteousness for humanness,
your judgments for compassion,
your hopelessness for faith,
your armor for love.

Such a sweet planet we live on
when we walk it with heart.

‘Love it Forward’ by Jeff Brown

Both my sister and I have let go of differing situations in the last week and set-up a new home together. Whatever stormy seas brought us here, we have found a loving harbour in this place. Not living under the same roof since we were 14 and 16 (which is a few years ago now, ahem), we both feel the hand of divine timing in what has unfolded recently.

We have chosen a modern house near the hospital where Debs works, with room for our grown up children to stay and space for me to work in peace. Here we are a week later on a stormy Sunday, all safe and cosy, with Debs asleep after a night shift and me logged on for work with the support service.

Deb’s eldest son and his partner helped us move and there was a priceless moment as Rob came out of our new home to take the latest box from me at the van and this is how the conversation went…

Rob: ‘Mum is showing my baby photos in there!!!’

Complete puzzlement on his face….

Me: ‘Well you were a beautiful baby.’

His next facial expression was even more eloquent.

It has been a week of loving support, mass activity, normal work for both of us girls, lists, laughter, shopping forays, yet more lists, yummy food, Mum and Dad visiting, friends popping in, gifted flowers and plants, messages of support, appliances mis-behaving and being replaced, the blessings of a kind landlord, a decisive and speedy furniture purchasing trip around Ikea, more laughter, warm rugs going down in each room, efficient heating (thank you), assembling of flat pack furniture with very helpful ‘back seat driving’ assistance being given from the sofa (not), ‘oohs and ahs’ over new home accessories, bottles of bubble bath and perfume appearing on windowsills, many cups of tea and coffee, queries of ‘Does this look good here?’ and ‘Is that hanging straight?’ and even more laughter.

We have plans for the future and we feel excited about them. Right now though we are taking time out to simply ‘be’, to catch our breath and let this new life we have drawn together seep in. We each react differently to change and cups of tea and coffee, yummy food, loving support and a cosy home nestle us, while we hold each other safe as everything settles.

And a new chapter begins….

Breaths of Love….

soap-bubble-338175_1280

While I have crafted my new web site Jane Thorne Design and a fresh painting creativity has started to flow forth, several thoughts have floated up.

I have not got here alone and it is the ‘Breaths of Love’ that have carried me this far: loving support from family and friends, shown in so many ways, each and every day. Love for what I am doing flowing through as I paint and create. Love for where I live, as I sit here surrounded by the familiar, listening to the oh so comforting everyday sounds of the farm.

In these ‘Breaths of Love’ I thrive and create and I am grateful.

DSC_0177

Comfort and peace…..

Forging ahead into the unknown can leave you a little weary and I am in that place right now. I have nearly finished the tasks that I am responsible for today and then for a few days I can retreat.

As I struggled to complete some important forms last night a memory floated up from Summer 2011. I was fortunate enough to be living next to the park that hosted a ‘Proms in the Park’ concert where Aled Jones was the star turn. It was freezing and I sat at my open front room window wrapped in a blanket and Aled’s beautiful voice carried across the tall cedar trees. I will never forget it. Here he is singing my favourite prayer……

The smell, taste, comfort and sheer joy of food that speaks to your ‘inner self’…your soul…dive in and indulge…

I heard the term ‘soul food’ on the radio this morning whilst I was cleaning out Claridges and collecting the girl’s eggs and I didn’t catch the rest of the article but it was enough to set me thinking.

Yesterday a loved one was struggling and called on the phone to ‘vent’ and get it out of her system and a cup of tea was offered from this end with some layered spiced apple cake. I’ll gloss over the fact that when she arrived I was so intent on looking after her that I left the cake too near the edge of the work surface and Toby also enjoyed it….after I had cut our slices I hasten to add!

Favourite suppers and treats are made when your family are up against it. Homemade offerings are taken when loving visits are made to family and friends. ‘Foodie’ gifts are pressed into happy hands when guests depart. Special puddings are consumed whilst watching a real treat of a film. Cake and tea are offered as comfort when someone’s world falls apart. A supper is taken around to a house hit by grief or serious illness when the right words are so hard to come by. Happy ‘catch-up’ times are had with friends around a table laden with comforting food. A special cake is made when friends are off on a trip.

Soul food is one of the main currencies of life because it is made with love, always x


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