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I’m a Newfoundlander born and bred and I’ll be one till I die. I’m proud to be an islander and here’s the reason why, I’m free as the wind and the waves that wash the sand, there’s no place that I’d rather be than here in Newfoundland… (The Islander, by Bruce Moss)

Yes, I’m a little homesick today. We are slowly taking out the Christmas decorations for our annual party and I came across this lighthouse I bought last year to remind me where I come from.  

I do my best to just let go and embrace the place I live in as my home, but there are some days I just need to hang on to my home of childhood. Today’s that day ☺️

Bliss

My bliss….

  
My mono print-version of the photo in my last post. 

Life is funny….and getting funnier.

💖

NaBloPoMo

  
I’m taking up the challenge to post every day in November. Enough is enough and I must give blogging some much needed TLC. 

Commitment is one of my issues, which carries over into surrender, which carries over into letting go and all the other soul destroying issues our egos sling at us to hold us back, so we can maintain status quo and feel “good”.

Well this post is about my intimate dance with darkness or my ego, and about just letting go of all my “comfort-zone” inducing mechanisms.

I have my shoes…

  
Let’s dance…

Surrender. Easy to write, but hard to do. Sometimes I have to fight, but often that’s not accurate. I have to have courage to face what may come my way and surrender to the experience be it good or bad.

Courage: To face the abyss of uncertainty and jump anyway!!! There are dreams I want to fulfill, but to have those dreams smashed is less terrifying to me now than never even taking the first step towards them. That really terrifies me!

Well this year I’m jumping finally, and yes, I’m scared of failing. Yep! Plain and simple, but I’m just going to jump in anyway.

Peace Arby

Neglectful blogger

So I’ve been MIA on my blog and unforgivably neglectful of the wonderful bloggers I follow! I’ve been soul searching alone, as I’ve always done in the past, when really I need to use my blog as my outlet….the answers might get to me sooner!

I haven’t been completely self-absorbed! I’ve been preparing to start my own business in literacy development for young children, painting, drawing, baking, knitting, crocheting, being a mom, and oh yeah…recovering from a minor head injury/whiplash (paintball misadventure!). So I’m making efforts to be a better blogger. I will post something creative and inspiring (lofty goal yes!) everyday in November, and support and encourage the bloggers who I follow, thank you for entertaining and inspiring us all! 

Here’s a crochet project I’ve just finished: Panda (226) surfie skirt and stripe tank!  

The pineapple stitch!

 A retro design and color pattern for the tank
 

Reflecting and Projecting 

Art is my mediation and today I’m looking at the very first watercolor I created. It came to me naturally without the boundaries of formal instruction. That’s not to say that formal learning of techniques isn’t good, it’s essential for progress, but there’s something to be said for creative moments that spring unannounced from your being. 

 Paris ’98 
I did carry on with being unschooled in this artistic medium, and sketched many scenes that caught my eye and spoke to my heart. I also remember vividly this year of being jobless in a foreign city. I was lost and art saved me or found me rather. I stared in the mirror each morning and whispered to myself “so really, who the hell are you without your higher education and your books?” Despondent, once I stopped burying myself in science assignments, projects, and exams, I came up empty. Chris (husband/best friend) was happy and working, and never lost himself. Le sigh.

  
That first year in Paris I turned myself upside down, inside out, insane, and exhausted searching for meaningful work. I wanted the job that would make me sing each morning. Nevermind that I had no work visa. I reasoned that if I got the job, I’d get the visa somehow. A year went by….no job, but my sketching and painting were taking root nicely. 

 Corsica ’98  
 Etais La Sauvin (Steve’s House) ’99  
L’Hirondelle, France ’99

 These sketchers are part of my travel diary. There’s many, but I loved these places the most. They are only second to my precious island; Newfoundland.

Here is the most precious place in the world to me! It was my place when there was nowhere else I could go. It grounded me so that I could dream freely here.

Middle Cove, NL ’02

 My partner Chris asked me to marry him here one cold July evening, five years before I painted this landscape, as we lay on the cliff -pictured in the middle distance here. Star gazing in the grass and wrapped together in love my best friend and lover thought he would like to stay forever with me. I agreed wholeheartedly. It was magical. 
The journey to find myself and silence my ego had begun without much time to blink. Did I enjoy this task that was shoved in my face? No. Was it critical for my true self to emerge? Yes. Was it painful? Most definitely; lots of pain. Have I found myself? Partly. Am I finished with this intimate seduction that my dark side, my ego keeps thrusting on me? No, but I’m so close! So very close.

  

Love, so simple. 

XArby

A new outlook in 2015

I decided today, it being a new year and everything, to finally work on my one goal: To find myself! I guess I’m not actually lost physically, but as you might have guessed from my previous posts, I’m all about the inner journey, and so my uprooted existence and reliance on others, two things that un-nerve me THE most, have forced me to look at myself and ask the hard questions (that I never thought I’d ask). What I’ve discovered is that I don’t know what I want. I’m torn in too many directions and so I’m left deciding what is or isn’t really me. I’m sure you all have felt this way at least once, maybe? Well, it’s something that has consumed me from the very first time I heard my dearest life partner “hum a tune” as he prepared to go to work each day. The happiness he felt about what he chose as a life long career threw me off kilter. Why was he so happy about work? What did he find so delightful? How could he be excited to go to work?? Of course, I realized quickly that his work was like play! He loved his trade and was thrilled at the prospect that he not only got paid to do it, but that he was allowed to do it! He was qualified to do the work he dreamed of doing and make a living to boot! How totally thrilling!!! I knew then that’s what I wanted too. I’ll return to this storyline as I continue to blog along, but long story short, I have been slowly and steadily making my way to reaching the goal of finding my “play” job, or if truth be told, my dream life since that initial spark of inspiration from Chris 17 yeas ago. I may not “hum a tune” everyday, but finally I’m getting there!!! And this year I will just be “me” and hopefully get there a whole lot faster. No more excuses and distractions, just fearlessness and being me whist humming Nelly Furtado’s ‘Forca’ daily !!

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Cast your nets out wide in 2015 my friends and haul’em in with all yer might!!

Much love!

The road: Well travelled

I started a journey with my partner long ago and could never have imagined where it would take me. I’ve learned that no matter what…I took it, I had no idea where it would go (still don’t), but the most important lectio, lecon, or lesson, which I have yet to master, is to not care where it’s going, only that I’m on it; the road.

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Happy New Year!

Happy

Up early today, since 4:30am, and I’m determined to enjoy the day before it gets too hot.
I’m presently sitting in the shade of a circle of Gum trees and I can smell the eucalyptus. The leaves are heating up and the scent is so amazing. It makes me happy! Is it the eucalyptus or is it just me? Maybe both.

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I’m reminded to embrace each day and be happy and content wherever I be! I’m especially happy and content that I have this insight in my 40s!!

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What makes you happy and content?

Hats: My first love

I love hats and living in such a hot climate I’m searching for ways to bring them back into my knitting. I’ve really enjoyed making hats for my baby boy, but he’s growing and I don’t get to make as much of the super cute hats anymore, as he tells me he just doesn’t like them!! The nerve!! Ha!!! That’s my boy!

So here are two cuties I made recently. The patterns are Tricia Drake’s “Welcoming Home Baby”.

The “kitty hat” for a family friend’s little boy, the pointy corners gave me the name, and your baby will look like a kitten in this, trust me!

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The weave hat for my cousin’s baby girl:

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As long as my family and friends keep having babies and live in the snow most of the year, I’ll be able to satisfy my hat fetish. Yay!

Lonely, again

This is an off beat topic for me, the loneliness yet never alone feeling. I’m sure many understand this emotion. However, I never felt at peace with it, until now. I live a life that thrusts this complex emotion, or perhaps situation is a better way of categorizing it, on me regularly.

So, I live half-a-world away from my family or anyone who knows me even remotely well, and there are moments in this foreign land when I desperately, and what I really mean is that I’m in a total despondent fog, need to hear a familiar voice or someone who understands what I’m saying, literally, and there’s no one I can find. Even if I could reach that someone familiar far, far away, now I stop and wait for these feelings to pass instead of calling or emailing. This is mostly because I know I won’t reach anyone, or I never get a reply etc…, and what good does it do anyway? I generally never feel much better and it gets worse the next time, especially if I can’t make contact. Plus, those familiar friends and family either worry about me or perhaps even avoid me next time!! I hope the latter is just my insecurity talking! Ha!!

Well, I’ve been in this “situation” for a few weeks now and I finally found peace. I read a blurb online about loneliness from someone who lost a spouse. The loneliness felt was a transforming force. It was changing the person to a better version of herself. Wow! Never saw that one coming!

It finally struck me, me = gobsmacked, it was absolutely true! Nearly 20 years in battle and I could surrender finally. Why? Loneliness was there to transform me (albeit farrrrrrrrr too slowly, I mean come on!!! 20 years!!!!!) and was never my enemy. Here’s why: I’m stronger than I’ve ever been in my life. There aren’t many problems I can’t handle completely on my own – and with Grace; this, however, was a gift infertility gave to me; which is something else that brought loneliness my way. I don’t NEED anyone familiar, but it’s nice to have the option and, most importantly, I have learned how to let go of everything familiar and safe and to cry, and to be ok with that (humor goes a long way to assist with this one!)

The wall I was faced with, until now, was that I have children and a husband and so I’m never alone, but loneliness was my best friend. Now I see that my own joke is on me! Loneliness IS my best friend and has taught me well. So now I can say thank you loneliness for visiting me these past few weeks, oh and for the last 20 years. Ah, gratitude for that which is (was) absent, another lesson.

Back patted!! I’ve survived this lesson, and I look forward to future transformations that loneliness brings. Peace to you!

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Keep on moving!!!!