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Currently Browsing: Friendship

The Creative Exchange

Who knows how and when I fell upon Samantha Dunne’s blog Dunne With Style. I followed a paper trail most likely because she, like myself, plays with paper which she parlayed into a business offering gift wrapping packages for sale called “wrap it up”. And what blossomed from that was an opportunity Samantha saw to spread the happy contagion of gifting people via Instagram and snail mail with the Creative Exchange. Find the details here.

About her community making project created in 2014, she says,”From those that have already joined The Creative Exchange journey there have been new friendships formed, connections far greater than could have been imagined through social media, inspiration to learn and make snail mail and thank you cards, handmade gifts…. the thoughtfulness of the creative community that have connected is beyond my wildest dreams. This is what The Creative Exchange is all about.” Enough said. This is her about page picture for the project.

Samantha Dunne's Creative Exchange on Shalavee.com

Let me also add that I love her thoughtful self-aware blog posts about cheering yourself on and discovering what you are besides your self-doubt. This is the same speak that I share to my readership and I think that the connections with other creatives has improved my self-opinion and awareness and consequently my self-esteem. So I truly enjoy the wisdom she shares as she forges a path before me and my fellow online hang abouts and bloggers trying to figure out what’s next. Leaders that lead us back to ourselves are priceless.

Samantha Dunne's Creative Exchange on Shalavee.com

So this past Creative Exchange round I raised my hand to take part and I was chosen. I was given a random name of a person in the US (Ms. Dunne is based in Australia) and mine was given to someone, and we commenced the online stalking for inspiration. All I could discern from my gift recipient was that they loved snail mail and gift exchanges so I settled on mostly supplies to play with. I hoped that my Secret Santa would be able to tell enough about me by searching my feed. And everything needed to be in the mail by November 30th. Which in the US meant I was scrambling to pull it all together during the Thanksgiving holiday. Whew.The Creative Exchange on Shalavee.com

But I did have a bit of fun when I set my mind to the shopping and the wrapping. I picked pink and kraft as my theme and away I went just grabbing for whatever was in my bins of my craft room. What fun! I have really enjoyed giving random cards and presie packages to my Instagram tribe and I hope that this exchange will connect me with more like-minded paper lovers. I sent the package off on Black Friday so it should reach them by Monday. And I’ll be watching my post box for my goody box too.

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Blogging For Self-Esteem

My husband has an event lighting company and we were at a wedding vendor ‘meet and greet’ recently. He introduced me to a professional woman who spoke about her event venue very seriously and pragmatically. And as the subject turned to social media, maybe I mentioned my blog, I spoke of how I’d entered into the social media world having no idea what it was about, mostly dreading it. And that I was surprised to find my self-esteem had bloomed through its use. And her stoic face spread in a smile and she said, “Good for you.” It was an unexpected response and that’s why I valued it. Because she knew the value of adding to one’s self-esteem. And I liked her.

See there’s a lot of us “older generation” who’ve resisted this social media “trend”. We’ve needed to be beaten over the head to consider our use of  social media. It was “new fangled” and we never even had a problem with rotary dial phones. But some of us had to concede to its use as necessary. I had a blog that needed promoting. Some others have books or personal causes that need exposure and support by sharing. But those are truly small whys compared to the bigger benefit. When you are on social media, community is almost inevitable.

===Fear Fears Community”===

— Jon Acuff —

We are community oriented beings. We get a sense of worth and gratitude and grounding when we are in a community. All of my life, I had never truly felt a part of one or maybe I didn’t believe I was deserving of one. And I totally did not expect to find mine online ! Yet it turns out there are so many like-minded people all over the world and if you speak honestly and from your soul-truth, you’ll bump right into them.

I’m loud and talkative when you meet me but I wasn’t like that online at first. So when I got a little less shy and began to ask questions and comment and speak up, I became a student of socialization. I saw that most people were nice to you and would respond. I saw that if you were truly kind to people they appreciated it. And I saw that the only way to have a friend was to be one.

cobalt door in Annapolis for Blogging for self-esteem post on Shalavee.com

And the gift I received in return was the knowledge that I have value and am worthy just because I’m here. Because I’m nice and have valuable points and views to add to the world. The people who aren’t invested in me, who aren’t my blood or need something from me, but have willingly given me validation, support, and kudos? They have been the blessing to my self-esteem and pulled me up off the ground. Them and a good therapist have taken me from a 4 to a 7 on the self-rating scale of self-esteem.

I’m at a place now where I’m ready to step out a bit more. I’d like to continue to inspire and spread kindness and support. If there’s a cause I should know and lend my support to, let me know. If there’s a question I can answer, ask. If there’s a community I can create or a service I can provide, I’d love to hear about it. I am stacking my aspirations up and next year promises to be an even better one. Thank you for reading dear people.

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Steve and Rob are Turnbridge Point

Last year, we got word that our neighboring house had been bought. The rumor was that these young gentlemen would be starting a bed and breakfast. One was a baker. “Cool” we thought. Our suppositions of the coolness paled in comparison to what has happened since. steve and rob on their porch on shalavee.comRob and Steve are extraordinarily nice people. They have helped us immensely by being the kind of neighbors who can meet our kid’s bus when we suddenly can’t. They work tirelessly to create business opportunities and provide the same for the other businesses in town. And I swear in their year and a half here, they know way more people than I do after my 15 year residency.Fiona on Turnbridge Points porch on Shalavee.com

After a lovely renovation, the Turnbridge Point bed and breakfast was opened this past Spring and has since gained much acclaim. This past August we happily assisted with our County’s first farm to table dinner set on their beautiful property.

Cinnamon buns on Shalavee.com

Steve Konopelski is not just a baker, he’s a patissier. Trained in the art of French pastry making, he often delivers his sinful leftovers to us via our driveway. We’re kinda spoiled. So when, at a special cocktail party, Steve and his husband Rob Griffith announced their big news that Steve was on TV in the Food Network’s Holiday Baking Championship, we were so happy for them.

Rob and Steve's announcement on Shalavee.com

And again, they wanted the community to know that they felt this was an opportunity for everyone as the spotlight was about to shine down on our sleepy little town.

Steve talking at the first viewing party on Shalavee.com

I attended the viewing party for the first episode at our newly renovated Culinary school and Steve made it through the first round cut.

Team Steve on Shalavee.com Last night’s second viewing party at the pub up the street proved he made it through the next round. Only Steve, and probably Rob, knows how many more rounds he truly made it through. Here in Denton, we’re all rooting for #TeamSteve.

brunch at Turnbridge Point on Shalavee.com

Turnbridge Point has also been offering Sunday brunches and I was luckily and generously gifted a ticket to yesterday’s brunch.  Here’s some of the proof of the man’s cooking talents.

platefull of brunch at Turnbridge Point on Shalavee.com

brunch at Turnbridge point on Shalavee.com

cranberry and apple crumb top pie on Shalavee.com

pumpkin chiffon pie at Turnbridge point on Shalavee.com

And those pies, the cranberry and apple with a crumble topping and the pumpkin chiffon, are the two being offered up for holiday orders on the Turnbridge Point’s website. These were also the first two choices of pies Steve would have made in the Baking Championship’s first show had the ingredients not been grabbed from the pantry. Both were fabulous! And he said there’s one more brunch being offered in December.  I ate until I was fuller than full. Good Luck to you Steve and Rob!

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Epiphanies

I have had a few epiphanies recently on what my life may yet have to include. And they happened on a treadmill at the YMCA. The first was a new aspiration to do public speaking. I was sparked with this concept when I read ,”Writers should speak “. I have plenty to say apparently. And people are often moved and inspired by a powerful speaker. So if you want to truly affect people, you should say something compelling enough out loud to move them.

I listened to a seminar on the subject, took notes, and wrote out my topics. Now to just get down to the actual speech writing. And practice it. And find a venue to pay me. 2016.

Meanwhile, this past week I realized that what I think I might love to do for fun and connection is host a meet-up of like-minds. Ask and invite my dear readership and fellow beloved bloggers to join me in a chatty-get-to-know-one-another and support-one-another type of thing.

Fiona and Eamon playing nicely from Shalavee.com

So I’ll put it out to you, understanding that many may be rather far away to attend, and say, what do you say? Would you like to get together and meet up with like-minded peeps? What would that look like? What might you want to gain support or even accountability for. Is this a potluck, a restaurant back room, or lunch hour? What do you think? I have been tickled and flattered at the amount of people who have told me they really liked what I was saying and how I was saying it. Often they tell me in an almost guilty pleasure kinds way like they shouldn’t be. Well I wouldn’t be writing what I do if I minded you reading. And I truly value and appreciate every lovin’ word you’ve handed me back.

So think about it and get back to me. If you know me, email me. If you’re on Facebook, post or message me on the Shalavee Facebook page. If you can leave a comment here, please do. Find me and tell me what you think. I can’t wait to hear back from you.

Love,

Shalagh

 

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

 

Creativity Bootcamp Feelings Wrap-Up

As this October 2015 Creativity Bootcamp comes to a slow inevitable close, I wanted to take a moment and give it some respectful thoughts and closure. This is a gift in need of being held gently and reverently to the many who used it and understood its value.

Our group creator and leader Jane Barry, author of the blog That Curious Love of Green, received a similar precious gifted experience in an art challenge she had participated in. The permission to do what made her heart happy regardless of the quality of her work and the accountability to show up day after day until there was a habit, a need formed. And what we would also find out is that our silent and lonely souls needed the shelter and the support to plant their thoughts of creative habits and let them grow.travel bug collage on Shalavee.com

The people in this group weren’t all sure what they could create or quite why they were there but we were all there together. And Boom! The creative energy exploded. And post by post, as a group, we began to build the community around ourselves with thoughtfulness and support, our confidence levels were raised. The sum of the parts was becoming a greater whole, a community, with a fountain of inspiration and light that began to flow which we could dip into for the support and creative inspiration we needed. And we were all in awe.

I have to say that at first, this wasn’t exactly how I felt. A direct message conversation with another participant reveals how maybe we all felt weirdly at first about the Bootcamp experience expectations.

Yeah, it was hard to figure out how to “do” this. I felt this need to do something amazing everyday and then the stress of the baby and then the performance anxiety…I agree, it could be overwhelming. So my thought is, use it the way you need to. If you only have five minutes to create, write a haiku about your toe. If you only have five minutes to read posts on the site then five minutes is all you have. We have that ‘I don’t want to miss anything’ mentality and that just can’t happen. This is for us to use so use it to amp your own game up if you can when you can. And share when you can…Accountability to yourself to complete a challenge is a great gift. And you know I’ll share my process despite myself.”

Guillardia and a puddle on Shalavee.com

I can say that I am now resigned that I may not be able to cram in practicing those mediums that I wanted as often that I wanted. And I’m OK with that. Husbands end up in the hospital, children are in your face while you try to create, and you just may not feel inspired to do anything but read. Those are just life happenings. Maybe however, we all learned to prioritize ourselves and our creative time a little more than we do now. And it may not be every day, but even once or twice a week we can allow for our creative release and the resulting high on creativity that we need to make us feel a little more ourselves.

Wanna see the whole month of posts? Start here. Yesterday’s post, go here.

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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