Category Archives: inspiration

Mojo Monday ~ What and Who Inspires You?

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Art by Donald Crew from the book Freight Train

If I ask you what or who inspires you, do answers immediately come streaming forth or does it make you sit and ponder?  Just last night and this morning I felt like I was on the freight train of inspiration.  Even just now as the words “freight train of inspiration” appeared in my mind and then on the page I thought hmmmm…I should go google that term and see what images pop up.  Well it appears that no one has quite coined that term yet, at least according to google, but I did find this wonderful rainbow image from a children’s book called Freight Train by Donald Crew.  Needless to say I am feeling a bit inspired by Donald Crew this very moment.  Yet, before I get completely off track (no train pun intended) let us return to the topic of inspiration.  

Here is one example of how Inspire is defined:  to have an animating effect upon one’s mind or emotions; to stimulate to some creative or effective effort; to elicit or create. 

Considering this definition of the inspire what or who has an animating effect upon your mind or emotions? What or who stimulates or elicits your creativity? 

It will be a challenge for me to limit myself, because there are so many things that are inspiring me every day, but I’ll try to share a just a few on my list today and will provide links so you can explore more on your own.  

I just stumbled upon a very inspirational couple just last night via the posting of an artist friend.  The history geek in me is absolutely excited about the work of Maya and Matthew Smith-Gonzalez, who are the co-founders of the Reflection Press and School of the Free Mind.  


Matthew is a videographer, webmaster, designer, accountant, manager, builder, architect, editor, publisher, and just about anything else needed to keep the Press running.  Matthew came from Philly to San Francisco to intern with COLAGE, a non-profit organization for children with one or more LGBT parents. Growing up with a gay father, isolated in the midst of homophobia, taught Matthew the importance of working to include everyone and inspired his activist spirit to take root.  

Maya is an artist, author, educator,  publisher, maker, freeek, spirit, big thinker, blissfully devoted spouse and parent who thinks kids and anything creative are awesome. She has illustrated over 20 award-winning, multicultural children’s book and written three. She has written three books for their press, including Claiming Face, Gender Now and I See Peace.  

They are currently raising funds for their latest project called Everybody’s HistoryThe overall goal for Everybody’s History is for this to be a large collection of chapter books. Each book telling the story of one hero who has impacted our world, despite the fact that they may at times not have fit into what was socially acceptable at the time. The series will include heroes from the United States, and eventually, the world.


Everybody’s History
 comes in 3 book groupings. The series begins with the heroes, Harriet Tubman, We’Wha and Charley Parkhurst. The main themes in the first set are the Civil War era, gender expression and race. Other unifying themes include Night, Secrecy, Disability, A Time of Transformation and Social Agreements. Each paperback book will be 48 pages with full color illustrations. Between the covers kids can explore the life and times of the characters through story, anecdotes, quirky facts and unique activities. Be sure to visit their web site Reflection Press and if you feel inspired to contribute to their fundraising efforts for Everybody’s History click here to pop over to their fundraising site on Kickstarter.
Next on my most inspirational list this week is artist Rita Loyd.  I had been looking for an image that might go well with an article I was working on for my column in Cosmic Cowgirls Magazine.  I came across this stunning image called Expansion of Love and this beautiful affirmation that accompanies the painting:
“Expansion of Love”
The expansion of love begins 
as a small seed from within.
irst I learn to love and nurture myself.
And then as my spirit awakens
I find that when I help others, 
I help myself.
And from that awareness
my love expands and overflows 
out into the universe.
I wrote to Rita about including the painting and affirmation as part of the article and she agreed.  We communicated back and forth several times and I even placed a purchase for a couple decks of her Unconditional Self Love Message Cards and several greeting cards.  I am so inspired by Rita and her art and writing.  This is what she shares about herself on her web site:  

“I am a watercolor artist and writer.  The theme of my work is about unconditional self-love.  The reason I write and paint about self-love is because unconditional self-love has the ability to heal and transform our lives.  I also believe that when we can love ourselves unconditionally that we create the internal support system that is needed to reach our greatest potential and to live our best life.”
Be sure to visit Rita’s web site for a lot more inspiration by clicking here
The last inspirational person I would like to share about is Henriette Simon Picker.  Henriette was born in 1917 and is a lifetime painter.  Henriette had her first solo exhibit in 2012 at the age of 95 years old and that was followed up by a retrospective exhibition in March of this year.   Her work has begun to enter distinguished private collections.   
Henriette studied drawing and painting at the Art Student’s League of New York from 1939 to 1941, while pursuing a successful career as a shoe designer.  She was hired by world famous I. Miller Shoes of New York at the age of 16 and for the next 45 years designed women’s high fashion shoes full time there and for many other major companies throughout the U.S.  During the 1950’s and 60’s she ran her own shoe companies and her designs were illustrated by many well known artists, including Andy Warhol.
I so appreciated this video featuring Henriette and her son as they speak about her painting and her first gallery showing.  It is also fascinating to visit her web site to view how her art changed and evolved throughout the many years she has been painting and it is wonderful that she is still going strong.  

I would love to hear from you now about who and what is inspiring you these days!  
Do share.  Inquiring minds want to know! 
Other people high on my inspiration list are:
Effy Wild ~ Fling some glitter in the air and then pay her a visit at The Glitterhood
Jenafer Joy Owen ~ Her art and musings make me hand-clapping happy! Visit her over that Jenafer Joy ~ Art & Musings
Allison Kenny ~ In March of this year she published her first chapter book for girls with Glitter & Razz.  The book called Starring Celia is the story of a 4th grade girls who goes from being bullied to becoming a ‘Go Girl!’  With her best friend Jazzy, her puppy Rootbeer, and her new summer camp, nothing can stop her from taking center stage.

Mojo Monday ~ Kick Starts and New Eyes

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The cover of my PaPaYa! “Voyage” journal

The past month had felt funky with a capital “F.”  One daughter came down with a really bad flu that had her down for a week.  Then her twin sister came down with the same flu and was also sick for a week.  I ran out of sick time and had to start chipping away at vacation time which is near and dear to my heart.  Wah!  My hubby had a short out of town trip camping with his students.  My 6 year old daughters had their 6th birthday and there was the party to plan for and a house and yard to prepare for guests.  The day after their successful party was Mother’s Day, but my hubby pinched a nerve in his back and a build up of stress found my own neck tweaked with strain and pain and a severe lack of energy.  My day job that I have been with for 8 years has grown more boring and unfulfilling, and while I still love the purpose of the work, I am weary of working in a cavernous lobby with no windows.  In the midst of all of this I had bone weary days.  Days where I felt so completely physically exhausted.  I also found myself not interested in writing or painting and when I arrived home all I wanted to do was veg out.  Then there were the old photos of myself and friends through the years I found myself flipping through the evening before the solar solstice, and I became sad and wistful when I viewed them because they seemed like they were from another lifetime.  I have been blessed in this life with an inordinate amount of vitality and energy, so it was the feeling so tired though that truly led me to realize that something had to change.  It all began by writing these words in my journal:


Changes need to take place.

Too tired.
Out of shape.
Not often happy.
43 years old.
Looked through old photos last night and saw a version of myself that was smiling a lot more.  Saw a happier version of me.  
Hard truths.
Brainstorm – what do I really want?  What do I want to do?  

Three Columns for Dreams and Goals
Health/Vitality: Food cleanse, Yoga/Pilates, Walking, Swimming (when pool reopens), Sleep/Rest, Hiking, Lighter, Greater Mobility/Flexibility, Less Screen Time
Life Plan: Writing, Art, Family, Community, Friendship
Happiness: Quality Family Time, Quality Hubby Time, Quality Me Time, Gardening, Creating, Painting, Writing, Reading, Community, Friendship, Women circle time, Swimming, Relaxation, Peaceful, Photography, More Outdoor/Nature Time

On the day of the eclipse I kicked started a shift.  I have been eating a plant based (vegan) diet already for 4 years, yet it is easy to slip into patterns of eating too many bread and cracker type food products.  I also live with a thin vegan hubby, who can eat anything he wants, including nightly treats and maintain his same weight, and my 6 year old twin daughters, who also seem to be able to eat the way he does and are doing just great.  I have suspected that my body was needing more nutrition, more real and hearty food, and much less of the empty fillers like crackers and bread that have infiltrated my regular diet.  I searched for some new vegan salad and smoothie recipes, adding detox to some of the searches and went shopping.  I also cleaned out the pantry and labeled anything not already labeled.  The extra treat was to lay down some new contact paper too.  


The goal is more positive physical energy.  Basically more “get up and go!”  This piece of the puzzle became more clear as I wrote these words about my new goals:




Focus on feeding yourself.  Focus on giving your body every good thing.  Focus on knowing that you deserve it. 
When we approach eating with a mentality of deprivation it not only feels punitive, it actually becomes a form of punishment.  It sets you up for a situation where if you eat something you have deemed forbidden you feel bad and guilty.  We focus on what we shouldn’t be eating. We may also be focusing on how we aren’t exercising.  If you are instead coming from a mind set that you want your body, mind and spirit to feel good and you know feeding it healthy and nutrition packed meals is what makes it feel good, then it comes from a positive place.
What else can you do to make your mind, body and spirit feel good? Consider all the pleasure possibilities.  How about giving yourself pedicures?  What about lying in the sun and stretching?  What about listening to your favorite music and moving your body to the rhythms? 
This is about feeling good.  It is about how you feel, not how you look.  There is an important distinction, because I am here to tell you that it is too easy to be dissatisfied with appearance.  We have to find the other ways to love ourselves.  




For over a week now I have been feeding myself nutritious packed meals called The Detox Salad, The Lightened Up Protein Goddess Bowl, The Back On Track Wheat Berry and Bean Salad, The High Protein Quinoa Almond Berry Salad, The Roasted Sweet Potato and Black Bean Warm Salad, The Spring Detox Smoothie and a few other smoothie concoctions that utilize frozen fruit, soy vanilla protein powder and kale or spinach.  We have an amazing library of vegan cookbooks yet I did find many of these new and fabulous recipes on a web site called Oh She Glows by Angela Liddon.

As my lists for increased vitality included kicking up the physical movement up a few notches I have successfully been doing more stretching and have added in simple weight lifting and then some pilates videos.  I’ll also be adding in some “turbo jam” workouts for fun.  For a number of years I was a serious gym rat and worked out six to seven days a week with my daily workouts sometimes lasting two to three hours doing a combo cardio/weight lifting regime.  I remember everything I learned from the various trainers who coached me over years.  I just haven’t been putting my knowledge into practice for a great while.  



After a week of increased activity and eating nutritionally packed meals I am feeling less tired.  I am feeling less anxiety and less stress.  My screen time has been cut back some as well.  My goal is to spend more time in nature and also more time enjoying in person connections.  Here is a sweet little slide show of our family enjoying a picnic outdoors and the creatures we met on our walk afterwards.




This food cleanse has somehow also inspired me to do a sweep through the house to get rid of other unnecessary fluff, so to speak.  Some closets have been purged and the give-away pile is growing. Kitchen items like food processors, blenders and juicers have been moved to more easily accessible locations.  Things just seem to be getting more organized over all.  Think it might also have to do with some increased energy.

Is there anything in your life that you would like to kick start?

Is there anything you would like to change right now?

What in your life might need you to just look at it with new eyes?

Mojo Monday ~ A Peaceful Place

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This week’s Mojo Monday was going to be about one subject, but fresh inspiration struck as I lay underneath our majestic oak tree, feeling very content to see blue skies, sunshine and listen to the various bird calls and tweets that fill our back yard with sound.  


For many years now I have found myself entering into a peaceful zone when I garden and work outside in the yard.  When I was single I spent many hours in my yards and I filled them with flowers and colorful garden art.  My yards in the past were small to modest in size, yet I still managed to spend hours and hours wiling away the time and enjoying digging in the dirt.  When my husband and I bought our first home together we were fortunate to find an older home, built in the 50’s, in a neighborhood where most homes have very generous yards and with existing trees and plants.  Our back yard, sometimes referred to as the Fairchild Park by some family and friends, is home to a majestic oak, a giant redwood, a cherry tree, a plum tree, a pear tree and a pomegranate tree.  We have also added a dogwood, a miniature Japanese maple, a red bud and other various plants and a stone patio.  

This past week our neck of the woods saw rainy day after rainy day.  I don’t normally complain about the weather and I usually appreciate each season for its own unique beauty and the gifts it brings with it for our natural world.  However I was beginning to long for some sunshine.  Saturday morning arrived sunny and gorgeous after a long rain all night.  My morning began with taking care of some overdue chores like cleaning bathrooms, cleaning a cat box, getting some laundry going and cleaning the kitchen.  After several hours of chores I began to feel grumpy and irritable and I looking longingly out the window.  When I finally headed to our backyard to do some yard work there were still vestiges of the doldrums hanging on.  As I began to plant some new flowers I’d been given for my recent birthday, and as our whole family worked together to finish clearing up some downed limbs into the green waste can or our wood pile, all the gray feelings dissipated and my disposition grew as sunny as the day.  


After hours of hard work I grabbed a refreshing beverage, a magazine to peruse and I went and lounged on a patio chair.  Ahhh, “Now this is the life!” I thought to myself.  I also ticked off in my head the many of the ways I am so incredibly blessed in this life.  

Now before life in the Fairchild household begins to sound unbelievably idyllic and peaceful I feel it only fair to share that there are times when I am in the “zone” of gardening and my twin daughters will scream, cry or begin to fight over some game they are playing.  Shrieking children do not really fit into my peaceful garden world and this can be a struggle for me.  Whining and shrieking children have the same affect on me inside the house too.  In my perfect world I would be grooving to good tunes, painting, writing, gardening, dancing, swimming (let’s ignore the fact we don’t have a pool) and enjoying a peaceful environment. We can’t always have that perfect peaceful world, especially when we share our space with significant others, children and pets.  

When I really begin to struggle with a chaotic (and messy) living space that sets my nerves on edge I try to take deep breaths, remind myself of what is really important, remind myself that this particularly annoying situation won’t last forever and if all else fails I can choose to do one of several things.  1) Engage the children in laughter, dance or some such fun to change the energy and mind set in the room.   2) Go outside to soak in the natural world or at the very least look outside.  3) Take a brief time out in my bedroom or my art room.  4) Retreat to the bathroom and hide for 5 minutes.  5) Grab a book, run a hot bubble bath and have quiet time reading for an hour.     


I have also contemplated for many years the following quote:  “peace. it does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work.  it means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart.” 
~ unknown

When I consider this quote I know that I have a ways to go in being able to remain in the peaceful mind set no matter what is thrown at me.  


Do you have a peaceful place?


Is it a place that you can count on to help you relax and/or feel rejuvenated?


If you are feeling anxious, stressed or unsettled are there things you do that help you to relax, unwind, or feel better?


What if you are in a funk or feeling grumpy?  Are there things that lift your spirit and help to center you again? 



All photos from the “Fairchild park.”

Mojo Monday ~ Freeing Your Spirit and Dancing with Life

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A melancholy feeling had overtaken me.  My most recent music mix even took on a slightly gray hue of sadness.  I knew it was bad when spending some time in my artist room playing with paints and glue and glitter could not pull me out of my funk. In fact the funk grew deeper as the art piece I had envisioned and was attempting to create would not come together.  Instead of feeling pleased with the creative process I grew more frustrated because what I was seeing on the canvas was making me feel more mediocre than ever.  My woe-is-me attitude began to spiral into questioning my purpose and bemoaning that I don’t have a local women’s circle.  One way for me to try and short circuit the negative thought patterns is to pick a favorite book to read or take a bath.  Even better yet is to combine the two.  So that is exactly what I did. 

As soon as I was immersed in the hot comforting water I began to read from a well-read copy of Finding Joy: 101 Ways to Free Your Spirit and Dance with Life by Charlotte Davis Kasl, PhD.  My spirit chose well that evening because the short excerpts in this particular book were so perfect for what ailed me. 

There are twelve themes in the book and each one has a multitude of topics within it. The twelve themes are as follows:
  1. Discover the Power of Joy
  2. Loving Yourself, No Matter What
  3. Tapping the Power of Your Mind: A Training Manual for the Brain
  4. Lighten Up: Finding Balance in a Crazy World
  5. Marvel At Your Amazing Body
  6. Reaching Out, Breaking the Rules: Tips for Making Life Easier
  7. When You’re Sinking Grab a Life Line
  8. Loving Your Body In Spite of It All
  9. Loving Children, Discovering Ourselves
  10. More years, More Wisdom
  11. Dancing with Life
  12. Joy to the World
Here are some excerpts for you to explore.

From Discovering the Power of Joy ~ #10 Allow Grief and Other Scary Feelings

One of the barriers to joy is a pent-up grief, sorrow, or anger.  Other barriers are the secrets we keep because we are ashamed.  Burying emotions and keeping secrets is like wrapping a shield around your soul that shuts out the smells of spring, the delicacy of touch, the softness of love.
It’s difficult to feel free and open when we’re congested with buried pain or rage or secrets. Joy flourished when we accept all of who we are.  This includes experiencing our feeling and clearing out guilt and shame by being honest. How can we ever know we are loved if we show only a little part of ourselves to others?…
In my work as a psychologist I frequently see people emotionally constricted by repressed grief and anger.  Over the years they become divided, detached or distant or turn to addictive substances or relationship.  Because the human psyche is a holistic system, to numb one part of our being is to numb the rest and create constant inner struggle.  I have worked with many couples who believe the love between them is gone. Often, after they open up and express their anger, hurt, and frustration, the love starts to return.  It feels like magic, but it’s not magic; it’s the power of our ability to shift to new states of consciousness as we unblock the illusions that come between us and our love…
So when we sob with grief over a loss, cry because we’re hurt, respectfully express our anger and frustrations, or tell our shameful secrets, we are freeing ourselves emotionally and physically, which makes room for joy.  This is a process that takes time.  We need to be gently yet remind ourselves that freedom comes when we stop repressing our feelings and honor the truths of our inner world.

From Tapping the Power of Your Mind ~ #30 Accept Yourself, Remembering and Forgetting.

You get on the path of exercising, saying affirmations, writing regularly, paying the bills on time, not criticizing your partner, and then…yikes!  You revert to old behavior.  You can’t seem to drag yourself out to exercise, you start carping at your partner, you gorge on food, In short, you forget to do all the things that are good for you.
One the path to joy, it is important to accept that we wax and wane like the moon.  We remember, we forget—and it’s all part of the dance.  We push through our fears, get organized, take a risk, then retreat for a while.  After a break, we once again push through inertia, and get going again.
Remember, you never have to do anything perfectly. Four affirmations are better than none.  Walking one a week is better than once a month.  Fresh vegetables three times a week is better than an unmitigated junk food diet…The important thing is to watch yourself play the remembering and forgetting game and be gently at all times.  How you fall of the path is part of the path.  It’s easy to love yourself when you’re winning.  The real test is maintaining that love on the tough days.  So keep remembering (until you forget) that it’s all drama, it’s all a dance, and it’s all okay.
From Reaching Out, Breaking the Rules ~ #48 If It’s Worth Doing , It’s Worth Doing Badly
Many people block themselves from undertaking new endeavors—from learning a language to taking up a sport or music lessons—because they are afraid of being clumsy and mediocre.  I suggest that clumsy and mediocre can be wonderful compared with burying one’s dreams and shrinking one’ life.  It is excellent for the spirit to be a beginner at something.  Being a beginner keeps us humble, helps us understand children, and can bring tremendous pleasure if we stop judging ourselves and just enjoy.  Better to a be a run-of-the-mill piano player than go to the grave regretting you never tried.
From Reaching Out, Breaking the Rules ~ #50 Stay Awake, Stay Aware—Learn from your Struggles
Sometimes we resolve to control a behavior and then find ourselves doing it again.  At 8 am we say we aren’t going to eat sugar and at 10 am we’re munching on a sweet roll.  We tell ourselves we shouldn’t spend more money and three hours later we’re ordering a new dress from a catalogue.  It feels like something driving us that we can’t control, but it’s usually a substitute for a deeper, underlying need. Lonely?  Eat.  Angry?  Seduce someone.  Ashamed of a mistake?  Blame someone.
The stay-awake-stay-aware approach helps you gain insight when you are going against your principles but can’t seem to stop yourself.  The basic principle is that by adding awareness to compulsive or addictive behavior you transform the behavior.

From When You’re Sinking, Grab A Life Line ~  #56. Connect, Connect, Connect

We have talked about feeling overwhelmed or feeling like a child.  Usually when children are upset they need to get rest, be held, be reassured.  There are several types of connections that can help us out of an emotional jam.  We usually need to do one or more of the following:
1)     Connect with feelings.
2)     Connect with another person.
3)     Connect with our spirit.
Connect with feelings.  When you suddenly feel disconnected, scattered, self-abusive, or nasty to others, it can be the result of repressing feelings about an event that recently occurred in your life.  Backtrack to when you first go off course.  Did you not stand up for yourself when you were angry with someone?  Did you feel misunderstood and not tell anyone?  Have you been rationalizing your feelings and need to be honest with yourself?….
Connect with another person.  When we’re in crisis or being hard on ourselves, making a connection with another person can reassure us.  No, we’re not unlovable to the core.  No, we’re no the only one who ever blew it.  Yes, other people care about us even when we get scared or make mistakes.  Talking with another person can bring back perspective on a situation.  The goblins in our mind get bigger in isolation….If you tend to tell yourself you shouldn’t bother people with your troubles or that you should figure it out on your own, you may have to push through shame to call someone.  But on the path toward joy, connecting honestly with another person and sharing your vulnerability is crucial…
Connect with your spirit.  Simply remember, this is drama, it’s not about your worth.  You are sacred, you are life.  You have the capacity for joy no matter how buried it seems at the moment.
When melancholy looms large in your life what do you do?
Did any of the excerpts shared spark something for you? 

Author Charlotte Kasl describer herself this way on her web site
“I wear the hat of psychotherapist, author, and teacher, but at my core, I am a peace and social justice activist. I believe the starting place for healing the planet is in our hearts and in the ways we practice respect, empathy, understanding and equality in all human relationships, including our relationship to ourselves.” ~ Charlotte Kasl

Charlotte has written a number of books.  One I have already read is called If the Buddha Married: Creating Enduring Relationships on A Spiritual Path. Her newest book that has yet to be released is called If the Buddha Had Kids: Raising Children to Create a More Peaceful World.  It is one I will read once it is released.

Have you read any of Charlotte‘s books?  If yes, do you recommend any?

Mojo Monday ~ VoluptuArt

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“Every object, every being, is a jar full of delight. 
Be a connoisseur.” 
~ Rumi
Do you have any favorite web stores?  Have you found some that are more than just stores, rather they are places where you can browse for inspiration, perhaps for a few giggles and for that ever important visual stimulation that actually delights your soul?
I have a few favorite web sites that represent what I would create if I was going to open up my own virtual gift shop.  One that tops the list is called VoluptuArt.  If you have never experienced this treasure trove, than you are in for a super duper treat (picture a large ice cream sundae with all the trimmings.)
VoluptuArt’s Mission speaks volumes:
“VoluptuArt has been created to bring you art that will inspire you to celebrate the fullness of your life! 
Our art and gift items portray bodies of all sizes, shapes, ethnicities, ages and genders. We strive to find images that ’embody’ a sense of aliveness, self-love and body esteem. We’ve also chosen items that we hope will encourage you to stop, take a breath and remember what is important in your life and to be grateful for your amazing body!VoluptuArt is packed with: sculptures, jewelry, functional art, wall art, journals, cards, magnets, candles, t-shirts, Yay! Scales and more!”
They also invite visitors to let them know about artwork or artists they believe would be a good match for VoluptuArt. 
Some of my favorite artists have art work available on the web site: Shiloh Sophia McCloud, Mara Friedman, Anahata Katkin (PaPaYa), Krista Lynn Brown, Kristine Paton, K Robins Designs and SARK. It is a wonderful place to discover new artists too. 
Here are some of my favorite creations by Kristine Paton.  Many of her images are available on bookmarks too and she pairs each one with an empowering quote.  They make wonderful bonus gifts if you happen to be giving someone a book.
Red Boa
This image is called Red Boa.  The book mark has the following quote:
“To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.” ~ Oscar Wilde
Flamenco
This image is called Flamenco.  The book mark has the following quote:
“Be Yourself  The world worships the original.” ~ Ingrid Bergman
VoluptuArt has quirky and unusual one-of-a-kind items.  Take for example the YAY! 
Scale.  How would you feel if you stepped on the scale in the morning and it always gave you a compliment? “you’re perfect”, “you’re gorgeous”, “you’re hot!” You’ll never have another bad scale day with a Yay! Scale. Thanks to the principles of quantum physics – a Yay! Scale never lies! Conceived, designed, handmade, and signed by Marilyn Wann of Fat!So? fame.  Note this is the silver version, another version comes in purple sparkle and one even comes in a plush hot pink carpet.
There are also amazing sculptures to feast ones eyes on.  Here are some of my favorites. These two are by Shelley and Michael Buonaiuto called Gladys and Wind.
Wind
Gladys

Looking through the various themes can lead one to fun new discoveries as well.  Some of the themes include: Goddesses, Divas, Funseekers, Frida Kahlo, Woman of Valor, Relationships, Rumi, Bellies, Breast Health and Ahhs and Giggles.
Another treasure that I enjoyed discovering is this petite earring Goddess holder shown to the left.
If you visit the VoluptuArt you may also want to visit their Resource page. They list articles, poetry, films and link to other inspirational web sites.
If you visit and find something that strikes your fancy come back and share.
If you have some favorite web sites please share links here too.

The Gift of Tears

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I am so thrilled to feature Libbie McIntosh in my column in the Cosmic Cowgirls Magazine. She is an inspiring woman who teaches us all that we can make a difference. Just click the link to read the article that details her experience as a volunteer in Cambodia and beyond.  Please click here to go to the article.

I Believe She’s Amazing

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Kim MacGregor launched I Believe She’s Amazing to unite and inspire 1,000,000 women around the world to recognize the amazing women in their lives, in memory of her inspirational friend Erika Heller, who lost her four-year battle with colon cancer on May 28, 2009, at 31 years old, just two weeks shy of her one-year wedding anniversary to her Prince Charming, Ryan Cornell.



She organized a flash mob of 200 dancers to launch the “feel good” movement and the amazing choreographers and dancers pulled it together in just one-6 hr rehearsal the day before the shoot.

(The song is I Believe by Yolanda Adams, from the soundtrack to the movie Honey starring Jessica Alba.)


Kim had this to share about her dear friend, “I wish Erika to be remembered by how she lived her life: full of smiles, laughter, silly voices, love, encouragement, and gratitude for her many friends. Never missing a chance to show her appreciation for the gift of friendship—something that meant so much to her—Erika always ended our conversations with the words, “I think you’re amazing because…”