Showing up….

Aug ’18 Update: I have removed my videos from YouTube.

A few weeks ago I had a message through LinkedIn from a company in The States that had produced an application. They felt I could work through it and the pairing would be a mutually compatible one. The only hitch was it only ran on Apple technology and I am completely Microsoft and Android based. I researched the company and the app. and took the plunge and organised an iPad and connection through my mobile provider. Nothing ventured I thought, hopefully.

I gave the app. a run for it’s money and quickly discovered that it was not conducive to my way of working. The company and I mutually agreed to part company.

Mmmm, I now had an iPad.

Inspiration flowed in and I ran with the thought of making videos and posting them on YouTube. Gathering my courage, and wrapping my brain around the technology, I set to work and here you have the initial results. It’s interesting, because I still have a lot to learn about camera angles and all that good stuff. Thumbnail pictures on which frame your video freezes on (still working on that one) and the hilarious aspect of presenting myself. A buddy and I were in stiches on the phone this afternoon, as I described my antics at this end. Here’s a few of the brief highlights:

‘I have tested most areas in my apartment for the best light and daylight is best. It highlights every crease and wrinkle though.’

‘Did you know my facial expression when I swear is comic?’

‘I was wearing a scarf around my neck to start off with (to hide the crepe effect) and I looked as if I was cutting my head off. I ditched the scarf.’

‘I threw the scripts away and just talked, but it’s at an angle. Do you think people will notice?’

So, it is with a deep breath, hopeful courage, the opportunity to master the techniques as I go and love, that I hit the publish button.

Let this new chapter commence…. ❤

My first sunrise….

sdr
sdr

I have been in my new ‘happy bubble’ home for two weeks and this part of the country has been shrouded in fog and cloud. This was the scene that greeted a new day and I dashed out onto the terrace in my dressing gown to capture it. The first sunrise in a new chapter. ❤

I was chatting to a kindred spirit yesterday, who lives in this beloved old rambling house and he commented that everything happens for a reason. I paused and replied 'I am not so sure about that'. With quick fire wit he shot back with '*&~*$&* it, that was the only thing that was keeping me going'. When we had finished laughing, I folded my laundry and heartfelt words flowed forth. 'Life is messy with upset and challenges, that sometimes cut very deep. They create space and the new and unexpected float up and we ponder and think 'Yes, I can do something with that'.

Lost in translation…

sdr

The sunset yesterday.

Bella’s lovely Mum loaned the joy of Bella late yesterday afternoon and we had a great time down on the beach. We played chase and Bella’s tail went into overdrive as she ran for her ball up and down the sand. She is a bundle of joy and I love being with her. With every breath I took down there in the magical light, I could feel the strands of me coming back within. I came back to home. ❤

dav

Sometimes lives get lost in translation and the essence is missed by those witnessing it. I have had many comments made to me over the years along the lines of ‘Will you ever settle’ and ‘How come you never stick at anything’ etc.. The essence here is that I carry home in my heart in a light filled space that rests deep inside. I am settled within. Every single event, situation and moment of trial and error has evolved into what I do now and that flows naturally with love. I move forward with hope and it’s a funny thing about trust….you don’t know if you can trust, till you trust.

sdr

As Bella and I left the beach we walked past the tea room, all lit up inside and sparkly with decorations. Lesley came outside and we hugged and had a quick natter. I stood there waving and blowing kisses to friends inside, whilst holding up Bella’s beach toys to let them know why I wasn’t coming in. Bella’s Mum had a yummy meal waiting for us when we got back and we sat by her log burner sharing peaceful moments and each other’s news. I returned home with some lovely food to have later, lovingly wrapped in containers. Today there is repeat joy as I can borrow Bella again and we’ll be back on the beach at sunset.

Blessings abound as life flows. ❤

Trust like the trees….

dsc_1871

Trees trust, with their roots going deep down into the earth for nourishment, yet they do not live there. Their branches and leaves reach through the air towards the warmth of the sun and the light in the sky. Trees keep on growing, reaching and bursting forth with new life, wherever and whenever they can, no matter what happens to them. Where one is felled, a new one will be growing elsewhere. They are all linked by nature and offer shelter and above all else, hope.

Nature displays such wonderful examples, that I find the inspiration for my writing in her images.

There are some souls in this life that create whirlpools and the movement and spin within gives their life meaning. It makes one wonder if the speed of the spin stops them seeing any other kind of perspective.

Recently, I accepted a pet care/house sit placement for over a month, as they had been let down. Nowadays I only sit for friends, so this was a step into trust on both sides as I did not know the couple involved. I was booked to care for a lovely cat in a home in North Lancashire.

How others choose to live is their choice and given the work I do sitting in judgement on anyone is not my style, so I will try and relate this adventure with kindness. There is a tacit understanding with pet care placements (as money is rarely involved) that loving care, responsibility and common sense are traded for a comfortable home and new surroundings to explore. You can guess what this is leading up to can’t you? I found myself in a whirlpool.

The house was falling apart and every day brought forth new levels of ‘Oh, you are kidding me on???’. Explanations were given (from halfway across the world in Thailand) and there was a ‘story’ behind every happening and the theme of each story was that it was always someone else’s fault. It’s winter here now and each day the temperature dropped, the rain lashed down sometimes turning to hail, and the wind blew. One of the exciting developments was rainwater pouring in through the ceiling and the internet stopping due to non-payment…I will spare you the details of the other ‘happenings’, but most mechanical things in the house were broken and the wind whistled through broken panes of glass and windows. There was little comfort to be found anywhere, but their cat is a sweetheart. Suffice to say, after nearly a week, I called ‘Mum and Dad’ of the home owners, as they lived around the corner and by this stage I needed help. We had a parent to parent discussion and I tried to manfully carry on, with offers of help being drafted in. As the ‘Dad’ commented I was being subjected to a form of wild camping. I stood there at 3am the other morning moving the mattress onto the floor to try and gain a few hours sleep and I paused and thought to myself ‘Jane, what are you doing?’. I sent emails next morning and called ‘Dad’ and asked them to come and pick up the reins, as I was heading home. I received a huge amount of messages on WhatsApp from their daughter. Funnily enough the message theme was it was my fault and how could I inconvenience her life like this and had I expected a hotel? My reply was brief and clear.

Life flows with reality checks and it is up to us to pay attention to them, or not as the case may be. In my experience, if we choose to ignore the reality checks, then they will keep presenting themselves in ever increasing sharpness, till we do pay attention.

Which brings me back to trees and trust. We do not know whether to trust other trees, until we flow with trust and discover which space they are choosing to grow from. They may not always be operating from their best space and only time will show this. We can still trust though.

I have found that I do not have to step into other’s whirlpools, nor align myself with trees that do not nurture growth. It matters, it really does, what we put into the soil around our trees, and which trees we align ourselves with, because from that our branches and leaves will flourish.

The height of optimism…..

dav
Big Old Bob

Bella’s Mum kindly agreed to me borrowing her for a walk a few days ago and it was a joy to be together again on the beach throwing balls and walking along the sand. We met Big Old Bob and he was out with his Mum as she trained three guide dog puppies, Barney, Buster and Birdie. At thirteen weeks old it was Buster’s first time on the beach and he was beside himself with excitement. Bob was overseeing it all, as I am sure he has done for many other puppies over the years. Bob is as deaf as a post and talks in a loud yowl. ‘He can’t hear himself’ his Mum commented and I stroked his head as he leant against my legs and we chatted. I fell in love instantly and a serious discussion followed on Bob coming home with me. My landlady developing a fondness for dogs any time soon is unlikely, so this plan is on hold.

At the moment I am in a village in North Lancashire looking after Sebastian the cat and sitting writing at a table in the bay window. My view is a beautiful park, where the trees are managing to hold onto their colour despite the most outrageous wind and rain today.

I just glanced up at a box of cakes on the shelf and the sell by date is 29th December…it it highly likely that this box will be emptied within the next 24 hours.

I have some special buddies that I used to work with and we still sail together through our days on Skype. It’s our virtual office space and holds more blessings than I can count, as messages wing their way back and forth. The comment has just been made that today is going rather well and my reply……….’We’d better not broadcast this, because someone is bound to come along and * (insert your own favourite word) * it up!’

Holding optimistic hope as always at this end and flowing ❤ to you all. xXx

dav

The world is gifted with stories told and graced with those who take time to listen…..

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe Bluecoat Chambers, Liverpool

Yesterday afternoon I took the train into Liverpool City centre and set out to find the meeting place for my first visit to a creative writing group.

It was held at The Bluecoat Chambers, another hidden gem in this city full of surprises. As promised by the kind organiser, there was an orange book on the long table in the bistro to guide us together and I was greeted with smiles.

Take three regulars and five newbies. Put them together in this beautiful setting with fragrant tea and coffee and a huge dollop of trust and you have a delightful and inspiring two hours.

We are a mixture of a playwright, a musician, lyricist and poet (I am buying his first poetry book), a poet and writer of prose, an artistically inspired poet, a blogger and writer, a poetry lover, a poet and criminal story writer (who is compelling when he reads out loud), a creative student writer and an academic, who writes and rants (his description not mine!)

Some of us shared and we all contributed with support, encouragement and how the pieces resonated with each of us.

I loved every single minute of the experience and we are all meeting again in a month’s time. This group is one of life’s gifts. As I rode the train home I gave thanks for my adventures since I moved to this special place and for the lovely souls that are weaving though them.

Holding my heart open for life’s new notes……

Library3Liverpool Central Library Atrium

Each day I sit at my desk to write, work, paint and go about my business in front off a sash Victorian window at home. The sounds of life at the seaside drift in and I watch the seagulls wheeling on the thermals outside. As my ‘life boat’ sails forward I am grateful for this peaceful space and my sails of loving trust, hope and opportunity.

There was a talk being held at the Central Library in Liverpool the other evening and I went along with one of my housemates. Liverpool is new to me and what a delight it is to start to explore this wonderful city. There is so much going on there and so much to see. It was a magic evening and we parked outside on the cobbled street, right in the city centre, which surprised me for a start. Then the building itself is an amazing place. I will share some photos I took, because from the moment we walked into the atrium, to the roof terrace upstairs, I was blown away and not capable of more than a ‘WOW’ as we came to each new part. I had to be dragged off the roof terrace as I stood there watching Liverpool at twilight, as our talk was due to start. Liverpool is an inspiring city with so many opportunities waiting to be discovered. The talk was good too and it did us both a world of good to be around like minded people for a few hours.

DSC_0072The beautiful building that houses Liverpool’s Central Library

DSC_0075The old reading room

Library2Liverpool at twilight

More blessings flow in with the loving care of my friends and family. My Mum and I have always been buddies and the natural flow of our communications and those with my friends are a joy. The ‘How are you getting on with that?’, ‘What happened with so and so?’ and ‘You’ll never guess where I’ve just been, or what I’ve just seen’ and the laughter that flows with the ‘Really? You’re kidding me on’ ones and the ‘Brace yourself….’ openers that never fail to delight. Loving friendships are deep, rich and add precious notes to the days as we share all sorts back and forth.

This last weekend was busy on the service as the commercial ‘love’ train notched up the pressure around Valentine’s Day. I probably got a bit weary and was coughing yesterday as I worked. My landlord and friend heard me struggling and brought a cafetiere full of a wonderful concoction to my door, with my favourite flowery mug from Mum and Dad. It was full of hot water laced with fresh honey. ginger, garlic, lemon and care. I was so grateful. We have all settled down very well in our new home and care and thought weave through our days. Our landlord has set up a cinema type system in our front room and it’s a haven to sit in there and watch a film. I was tucked up knitting and engrossed last night, when his head came round the door as he had heard my laughter. My happy face communicated that his efforts were much appreciated. We all feel that this house is keeping the fresh salad bar at Morrisons, our local grocery store, busy and when we are all at home we share food and sit nattering around the table. Pancake night was a vertiable feast. Bliss and many blessings.

Visiting our local craft shop recently I made some friends and today my new art supplies have been delivered. I am branching out with a different creative expression from my ‘norm’ and looking forward to seeing what flows from this.

I have also made contact with a local animal sanctuary that cares for donkeys, horses and dogs and I will be visiting them for the first time this weekend. I have offered to help them out when I can and as these new opportunities are coming in, I was not sure how much time I could commit. The lady who runs the sanctuary was lovely on the phone and you know what her response was? ‘Jane, if you can just come along and stroke the animals, that would be a real help’. I am looking forward to my visit there and I sense that I will be spending as much time there as I can.

Gratitude flows for all these new opportunities and for the loving notes that are the song of my days.