The Soulful Artist

Life. Art. Transcendence.

Up until now, I was happily going about my life … doing my thing. Then my daughter asked for a dog. Not just any dog, a very specific dog with specific markings and traits. Seriously, she was VERY specific about what she desired in her dog. She even put her on a vision board, and constantly spoke of this dog. I played along because if you know Grace, you know that she talks A LOT and I’m not the kind of mom that will kill a dream. So I let her speak of her dog. Then … she named this dog! Oh yeah, she named it and then started saying, “Calliope IS coming, Mom! Calliope IS coming!”

If you know my Mini Cooper story, then you know what happens next … I’m thinking, uh huh, okay. But you know me, and Grace knows this … The Universe listens and she was FIRM in her conviction that Calliope was coming. I can tell you that what happened in the following weeks after she named her dog was short of miraculous. Chris looked high and low, even going as far as looking out of state. I’m thinking, “This is ridiculous, but if it’s meant to be, it WILL be.” And it happened and it happened quickly! No joke … she kind of just landed in our lives with very little effort.

Calliope The Frenchie is by all accounts Grace’s dog, and I’m just the GPupMa. But this little dog attached itself to me. She’s my buddy. She waits for me as I ride the Peloton and we stretch together afterwards. She greets me at the door when I get home from work in the morning. She happily lounges with me on lazy days (everyday). I did nothing to deserve her loving kindness towards me. I can’t even begin to tell you what happened to me except that I fell in love with a dog.

Oh the irony … up until now, I wasn’t a dog person. I’ve tried as we’ve had dogs in the past, but it never felt right no matter how hard I tried. I kind of gave up and didn’t think about it much. I believe that My Soul knew though. My Soul knew to keep the faith because it knew. And My Soul has never failed me.

I am full of gratitude for the love she has shown me. She has been nothing short of a bundle of joy covered in fur. I am forever changed because of this little dog. Who would’ve ever thought?

I have another side to me. I have many sides to me. I love that about myself – that I’m a multi-dimensional , multi-faceted being and I have a love for many things!

One of the many things I love is smudging! Clearing my space of any crazy, negative energy is important to me. I do it every full and new moon, anytime there’s negative energy or a bad experience. At work, I’m known to carry sage spray in my pocket and spray my assigned areas, and I also spray myself before I go into work.

There are many advantages to smudging. The smoke from smudging is a form of spiritual ritual, a sacred practice that rids spaces of negative energies, bad spirits, even bad thoughts. Smudging cleanses, purifies, blesses, and even inspires!

I smudge so much that I planted sage in my backyard! I have white sage, red sage, lavender sage, pineapple sage! The hummingbirds love them as do other birds, and the bees, butterflies, and dragonflies! it’s amazing to see them all out there flying about!

My creativity today was spent pruning my sage bushes and then making sage bouquet bundles! Interestingly enough, today or tonight is the new moon in in Aries so my bundles are out there charging under the new moon vibes! I’m looking forward to the amazing energy they will possess!

Here’s to being creative and to allowing myself to follow the nudgings of my soul! Here’s to being open about my spirituality and my witchy side!

My Soul created this collage.

I’ve always felt self-conscious about letting people see the “real” me. I grew up in a household where appearances were everything to my mother, and I mean EVE-RY-THING. I learned to live hidden, stuffed down, shut up. You know, don’t do anything to show people how you’re really messed up, just keep your mouth shut and don’t say a word for fear it will be the wrong thing to have said. I know that this has a lot to do with why I prefer to stay out of social situations because wearing a mask and pretending to be someone I wasn’t was VERY challenging for me. Keeping my mouth shut when you’re a child is challenging, you know? It wasn’t me. It was painful.

I found this collage I made in an old art journal of mine. I put it together because I loved the expression on the face, I love the spiritual significance of the Monarch butterfly, Monet’s painting, and I love, Love, LOVE angels and hearts. I didn’t really think much of why I put these all together except for the fact that I liked all of it and it brought me joy!

I always say that my art, my creations are really the works of my Soul. It’s my Soul at play, so of course it has nothing to do with me, yet it has EVERYTHING to do with me! It made perfect sense as I did a double take when I saw it in my art journal years later.

Wearing a mask, transforming, healing, love, divine guidance and protection … such a huge “Ah-ha!” revelation! My Spirit ALWAYS knows, but at times I’m too preoccupied to pay attention! My little collage delivered quite the message today! So revelatory for me! When I found it, I felt joy all the way deep down to my core!

I’ve done a lot of healing work in the last 20 to 30 years. Lots of forgiveness. Lots of releasing. Every now and then there will be a trigger. I know that there will always be a trigger, but I don’t react to them anymore. I’m not perfect, I’m FAR from, and there is healing work still needing to be done, but I try. I get it. I’m not the same person that I was 20 years ago, or 10 years ago, or even last year. I’ve had to really look at my own self and forgive my own self. That’s been the most difficult. Self-love. Self-forgiveness.

We owe it to ourselves to be kind to our human self. This being human thing isn’t easy. There is so much to learn, to take in, to absorb, to transmute, to process. Every day is different. Every human is different. It’s easy to forget that we owe ourselves the grace and love that we would extend to another. We are worthy of receiving that from ourselves because we know that God/The Universe/our own Soul would extend it to us!

Breathe and know that our Soul’s know exactly what their doing. Breathe and know that our Soul is ALWAYS leaving us clues, we must just be awake and aware enough to see them, to align with them. The best way to allow for this alignment is to do something creative – paint, journal, movement/exercise, sing, write, garden, however you want to express yourself creatively. There is a meditative property in the act of creating that can open you up to feeling into the clues it’s attempting to leave you!

Take the time. Take the time to tap into your inner self, that part of you they is your Highest Best Self. Slow yourself down enough to tap in. Breathe. Get lost in the activity. Secret hint: Spirit loves to PLAY! So laugh it up, smile, and invoke that inner child to come out and play! Enjoy the process!

Day 28 of 28 Days Of Love!

They say that when females are born, they literally carry the eggs of future generations within them. What am I even talking about? I know. I’m NO expert when it comes to genetics, but this makes some sense so let’s see if I can explain it somehow.

When my Gramma (grandma) was born, she had within her the egg that would eventually become my mother, who would eventually (55 years later) birth me, and I would eventually go on to birth my own daughter 33 years after my own birth – 88 years post my Gramma’s own birth. I don’t even know if that makes sense, but pretend it does.

My Gramma, Filomena, was a significant figure in my life. I was her oldest grandchild, her second chance to get it right. My own mother was overwhelmed with having 4 children (she was mostly overwhelmed with me) and was more than happy to let me stay with my Gramma. I spent many summers with her when she lived in San Francisco. I would do everything with her. She would do everything for me. We were a pair and I loved her immensely.

My Gramma was so talented and creative. She played the piano. I remember her excitement of purchasing her piano. It barely fit into the tiny apartment she shared with my aunt, but she didn’t care. She played with so much passion and joy. She also had a penchant for sewing and creating clothing. I did not inherit the piano playing or sewing genes, unfortunately. She attempted to teach me both, but they were just of no interest for me when I was young. I wanted to play outside, run, bike, not play piano or sew … my brother does play the piano, and my sister sews. In hindsight, I do wish that I could play the piano and sew now, but, eh, it’s all good.

My Gramma loved me beyond measure. She taught me unconditional love, protection, prayer. She was such a funny little lady who stood about 4’8”, smelled like baby powder, who told me stories at bedtime, stayed up with my brother and I to watch scary movies, and introduced me to diary keeping and journal writing. Her personality was contagious. Her co-workers called her “Lil’ Bit” because she was this teeny, tiny woman with the heart of a lion!

My last love shoutout for My 28 Days of Love goes to my beautiful, incredible Gramma! She was the only one to always encourage me to remain brave and follow my dreams, and to do what made me happy. I love than even after her death she still finds ways to let me know she’s still beside me. I miss her so much.

Day 27 of 28 Days Of Love!

Full moon vibes on this 27th day.

There are so many superstitions and stories about what happens during a full moon. The crazy people come out. The werewolves come out and howl. Just all kinds of stories. Even the word lunatic is who Roman Goddess, Luna, is named after.

There is magic in the madness of the full moon. It’s a time when the Earth is right smack in-between the sun and the moon, and the moon is closet to the Earth. I say there’s a shift in the atmospheric pressure that causes the “insanity” of the full moon. I believe the full moon truly affects the behavior of some humans – blood pressures fluctuate, thoughts run rampant, behavior is irrational. Just all kinds of stuff. I’ve seen and experienced it as a nurse.

To me, the moon is beautiful. I mean, I have memories of sitting in the back seat of the car with my dad driving and me staring out the window and believing that the moon was following us! I am such a selenophile – lover of the moon.

Full moons typically represent times of completion, times to take stock of the hard work that you’ve put in and to reap what you’ve sown. It’s a time to make a list of things that you wish to release – bad habits/behaviors, things that no longer serve you, people/relationships, etc. Then take that list and release it to the Universe by placing it in a fire safe burning bowl and setting it on fire and allowing it to burn. These are just a few of my full moon rituals.

My love shoutout today goes to the beautiful full moon. Its perfect, round, glowing shape, illuminating the sky and reminding me to also shine, to be my best self, and to allow myself to shed the parts of me that no longer serve me. It’s a moment that brings me back to my childhood for a brief moment and wonder at the moon and ask if it’s following me; to bask in it’s glory and to be grateful for the moment as I exhale.

Day 26 of 28 Days Of Love!

At any given moment, you can find a notebook or a journal in my purse, backpack, pocket. I’m always writing down some crazy thought, a note I want to remember, some quote, an elaborate list.

I remember being a small child and being fascinated with my mother’s stationery. I would get in trouble for stealing (borrowing) pages at a time. I began keeping and caring a notebook with me probably when I was 7 or 8. I wish I had those notebooks. I had so much angst as a child that I spent a lot of my time hiding out in my room, daydreaming, writing, drawing, doodling, dreaming on paper.

Writing relaxes me. It is my refuge. It has been my saving grace; it saved my life. I begin every morning – EVERY morning with my morning pages and gratitude list. I go through about a journal every 1.5 months (6 weeks or so). I have seen so much growth when I look through my journals. Where I once looked for answers externally, I now find all my answers within me.

My love shoutout for today goes to writing and my journals. For the peace that they have given me, and for saving my life. I am full of gratitude for the space my journals have held for me.

My painting represents the vastness of the world and how lost and small you can feel in it. Journaling allowed me to bring myself back to the here and now. It has allowed me to purge, unleash my fears and struggles, shared my hopes and dreams, expand my vision for my life, provided space for me to breathe. It’s been my biggest fan, my soft place to fall.

Day 25 Of 28 Days Of Love!

Comin’ up on the last few days of my love bomb posts! It’s been so fun to tell you about all the people and the things I love! This could go on forever, but I won’t bore you! There’s so many other things to write about.

I’m thinking my “challenge” for March will be “31 Days On One Canvas.” Not just any canvas either … one ginormous canvas. It’s so out of my comfort zone. Putting my art work out here for all of IG to see is out of my comfort zone. I do know though, that painting and creating lights me up and that getting out of your comfort zone is the only way to grow. There is no growth in staying “safe.”

I can think of many examples of times when I’ve been uncomfortable and wanted balk, but did it anyway. There’s a feeling of accomplishment, a sense of satisfaction that comes with it and it makes you more apt to try things that scare you. A lot of times our fears are irrational. A lot of times we let the voices of others dictate our decisions. But they’re not us. Other people cannot and should not make our decisions for us. Follow your heart. Allow your soul to lead. Allow your own voice to speak and be heard. Many of my best decisions and times of growth were times when I jumped and trusted that the net would appear!

My love shoutout today goes to bravery and trusting! It goes out to my intuition. I vowed to be even braver this year, to trust myself, to get out of my own way and attempt to put myself, my work out there and post everyday. Here’s to jumping and trusting that the next steps to take will appear, that the net will appear!

My Noah’s Steaming Hand in Missouri.

Day 25 of 28 Days Of Love!

Last week there was a cold front that dropped temperatures ridiculously, and delivered tons of snow to parts of the United States that don’t necessarily receive that much snow. Like Texas. Also, it was just C O L D all over. My son sent me a video of him sitting in his car (he lives in Missouri) and he was telling me it was something like -9 degrees! I can’t even imagine.

I’m an island girl through and through. I’m cold all the time, but a couple days ago I was whining it was too hot at 68 degrees. When did this happen. I love shorts, tank tops, and flip flop weather. Lately though I’ve found myself in that exact attire and it’s February. I laugh because I live in California and it’s not really that warm enough yet to be wearing shorts.

My love shoutout today goes to warm weather, island weather, and shorts, tank tops, and slippahs! I miss Hawaii where I’m originally from. I have to also send love to those who have been affected by this coldness and snow. Sending you all love and warmth. I pray that you’re all faring better these days and that it warms up for you!

Day 23 of 28 Days Of Love!

It’s no secret that I have a strong affinity and love for books! If you ever come to my house, the first thing that you will encounter is my bookshelves!

I love reading. It goes along with my love for imagination and my love of learning. I remember the first time I figured out that I could read! Ugh, that feeling of accomplishment and elation! I was so happy. I would read anything and everything that I could get my hands on. Any extra money I had as a child, I would spend on books! I spent countless hours in the library! I loved it that much!

My love shoutout today goes out to books and my love of reading. I spent a lot of time alone in my room as a child and books were my escape and refuge. I am so thankful for them. To this day, I can still pick up a book and easily be transported back to a place of rest and relaxation. I am thankful for the authors that write the many books that I love. And, yes, that second photo is a photo of my bookshelves.

Day 22 Of 28 Days Of Love!

I grew up Catholic, but I quit practicing Catholicism in my early 20s. I believe in God, a Higher Power (HP), The Universe, but felt no need for religion. For one, it was so forced down on me as a child that I literally felt choked by and suffocated by it. I don’t feel that a love for God/HP/The Universe should ever be forced. Secondly, I was taught that God was a judgmental God, one that would decide if you were worthy enough to enter the pearly gates of Heaven. My God is a good god and loves me regardless of my shortcomings and faults.

I am not religious, but I am spiritual. I have several spiritual practices to keep me grounded and connected to source. Like I said, I do believe in God/HP/The Universe. I very much believe that there is someone or something bigger than I am. I believe that with religion there is judgement of self, and with spirituality there is compassion for self.

My everyday spiritual practices, without fail, include meditation and breathing, and writing/journaling my “morning pages.” I’ve since included some creativity as painting or creating has been effective for me in connecting with my Spirit. I love angels and deities and call on them for assistance. I do use oracle cards and tarot, and I love crystals, plant medicine, etc. But for me, spirituality is more about my connection with myself and the spiritual practices that I mentioned is what I use to strengthen that connection.

My love shoutout today goes out to my Spiritual Team: God, The Universe, My Higher Power, My Angels, Guides, My Spirit/Soul, My Highest Beat Self. And also to my daily spiritual practices! I wouldn’t be ME without them!