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Co-creating with my Family

You know that I’m all about creativity. I’ve been described as an ambassador to creativity. Putting a slice of yourself into the world is affirming in the most wonderful ways. And I also believe that community creativity is a sure fire way to join people together.Co-creating with my Family on Shalavee.com

My family is regularly subjected to family art projects by me. In the Fall, group pumpkin carving is mandatory. We go out and pick our pumpkins and one night before Halloween, we sit at the kitchen table, draw out our jack-o-lantern faces, scoop out, and carve our pumpkins together. Then have dinner and watch a favorite scary movie with the jack-o-lanterns lit up on the bookshelf in front of us.Co-creating with my Family on Shalavee.com

At Easter, we all dye Easter eggs together. I make sure I have the eggs cooked and we all try different techniques like tye dying and rubber bands and drippy eggs. Our fingers get dark with dyes and we chatter and say”look at this” and there is a palpable feeling of pride in creation. It makes us feel good to create and we feel good together while we do it.Co-creating with my Family on Shalavee.com

Co-creating with my Family on Shalavee.com

Co-creating with my Family on Shalavee.com

So when I had this idea to art these plates for the garden fence wall, I thought why not involve the whole family in making the art? We chose animals and insects that we’d encountered in our backyard. I bought the right paints for ceramics. I downloaded the animal pictures. Then I cut out the animal shapes from clear sticky back shelf paper and adhered them to the plates.  The animal shapes would come out white after we’d painted them and peeled  off the shelf paper.Co-creating with my Family on Shalavee.comCo-creating with my Family on Shalavee.com

Co-creating with my Family on Shalavee.com

My son chose to paint the turtle and the firefly. My daughter painted the fox, the raccoon, the squirrel, and the rabbit. We joined together with great sincerity and intention in our now air-conditioned garage and set to work to create art. And that’s what we did. Each persons’ was different yet they were all united by a theme. And just this weekend, I finally mounted the last four as I had to go buy more plate hangers.Co-creating with my Family on Shalavee.com

Co-creating with my Family on Shalavee.com

Co-creating with my Family on Shalavee.com

Co-creating with my Family on Shalavee.com

Creating memories with my family is always an ulterior motive. But luckily my kids are creative and grab any opportunity to find themselves within whatever medium is laid in front of them, be it pumpkin, egg, or plate. And long after the kids are gone, I’m still have a piece of them in my backyard.

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 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.

Give Yourself a Place To Be Seen

I am such a human beast most of the time. I react without thinking and overthink situations without acting . I crave to be acknowledged and fear being seen. I spend more than enough time alone in my head. But what I do know is that we humans are naturally pack animals. And as women, we need the intimacy afforded us in these groups like we need water.

I’ve been inspired by many women in real life and online who have brought this need to my attention. Whether we were playing bridge or washing our clothing at the watering hole or hanging out in the bleeding hut together, we need the camaraderie and the connection that gathering gives us.

Give Yourself a Place To Be Seen on Shalavee.com

Being witnessed in your moment of feeling however you feel is a glorious feeling and needs to be something we give ourselves. We need to he heard and seen and acknowledged by others and by ourselves as well. The witnessing makes us whole in a way that nothing else can.

So I encourage you to find a way, or many ways, in which you are seen. For me that was through my blog and Instagram. It was by organizing a group of women I respected to meet-up in real life and say real things to one another. It has been to write from my authentic voice and publish it every week and allow people to read and feel what they want.

Many of us have been such harsh critics to ourselves for so long, we no longer recognize our isolation. I urge everyone to give themselves permission to share themselves with other people. Have real conversations and talk about ideas you are interested in. Surprise yourself by allowing connection and vulnerability and tell me what happens please.

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 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.

My Herstory of Unwanted Advances

What’s the official name for an uninvited unwanted advance? Those occasions when men have ungraciously invaded our personal spaces to “offer’ their manliness to us. Situations that put we women into a victim role warding off hands or words of a sexual aggressive nature? Yeah the incidents we’ve accepted as just part of womanhood.

I’ve had more than several of those. I just didn’t give the advances or my distaste for their memory any credence. But they’re still there lurking about testifying to a world that victimizes young women. The world where personal boundaries are optional.

There was that time when the well known local television anchorman cornered my twenty year old self in a dead end hallway of the under construction television station. I was a beautiful young intern. He was a lascivious veteran of trapping young beautiful interns.

There was the time when my great uncle tried to grope my teenage body in the local Missouri swimming hole. I think I told him to get his hands off me old man. That did the trick.

My Herstory of Unwanted Advances on Shalavee.com

There was the time my boyfriend’s father tried to give me a back massage, aka feel me up. I was 19 and upon telling my boyfriend this, he exclaimed there was no possible way his father could have done that since that man had almost become a priest.

There was the time that my ex-husband wanted to put his fingers in places I was uncomfortable with.

There was that time when I had split from that husband and my male co-worker wanted to offer his manly services to me if I ever felt lonely.

That’s probably enough to prove my unwanted advance track record? I have endured and stuffed these many occurrences, as many man women do, with the hope that my daughter will be savvier as well as live in a world less tolerant of this. In fact, I want to shout with my new loud voice, do this to my daughters and die. We never ask for the attention so why should I or she ever have to deal with it again? Although I also am reminded, I am never a victim unless I want to claim that title.

And I want to note my hope that our male partners will stand with us for these and so many more issues that separate us and diminish our power. Awareness is something we build together and a collective intolerance is change I support.

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 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.

Expanding Our Meet-Up

Admittedly, when I assembled the hopeful attendees for my Meet-up Group (which turned 2 years old in March), I wanted them to say “yes” because I looked forward to getting to know each of them better. And my wishes were surpassed when they said yes and I felt perhaps I had a good idea not just for my benefit but everyone’s.

Expanding Our Meet-up on Shalavee.com

I was right of course. Women need to hear what other women feel and think so that they can feel more normalized. We want to hear that we’re not alone. We want to know what other people are doing about their similar problems, especially when it has to do with our women’s bodies.

We became closer at each meet-up. We understood each other more. We trusted our group to bring and discuss our meatier issues. One woman became my contact person for my kid’s school. We met for coffee or drinks on a few occasions and I knew we could call on each other if there were a crisis.

As much as I wanted to selfishly keep our group the same, I also knew that we would all benefit from an influx of new energy and intelligence. And so this past Sunday, we met again with several new faces and a few absences of our regulars. And what we find again is that we are intelligent women just wanting to talk about being us. We want to make deeper talk, ask and hear opinions, and witness each other in the safety of the group.

Expanding Our Meet-up on Shalavee.com
Our Hostess with the mostess Annie

As it was Cinqo De Mayo, our hostess asked us to come with a thought on revolution. I am all about that these days and offered that the oppression we suffer from id often at our own hands. No one needs to help us keep us down. We’ve got it under control ourselves worrying about things that have nothing to do with our truest selves. My first revolutionary step is to stop self-bullying.

If you have attended gatherings but feel like it’s not for you, I get it. Most of them are too superficial for me. I’m the kinda person that is ready to talk about the real stuff and be witnessed in the process. I encourage you to start your own meet-up and see if it isn’t exactly what you were looking for. And let me know how it goes.

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 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.

The Alone Zone

Undeniably, we spend our lives alone. We are the only ones in our bodies, in our minds, and in our souls. Our family and friends will love us but they will always think of themselves first. It’s just humanity in action. We are loyal to preserve ourselves.

Yet, we are also pack animals. We need to be in community, to be witnessed and heard by our fellowship. To hear that we are in fact not alone. That we aren’t the only ones feeling this way.

Leave me alone but hold me.

Stay away from me but I’m lonely.

Love me but don’t get too close.

It costs your soul a high price to stay alone. I spent a lifetime of searching for partners only then using them to hurt myself. It was a lonely hard life where I perpetually gave up on myself. And I decided that it was harder to perpetually give up on myself then to give myself a chance. And I gave myself a chance to be happy even if I didn’t think I was worth it.

The alone zone on Shalavee.com

Now I have a huge community which I don’t even give myself credit for. I love to exchange ideas with like-minded people and my blog and Instagram posts allow me that privilege. And recently, I’ve been having prophetic community dreams. I think I am giving myself the high sign that it’s time to come out of hiding. Time to stop being alone and circle my wagons with others for some meaningful work.

Alone time is good and necessary for me when I need to ponder and work through stuff but then team work makes me feel truly alive and part of something bigger than me.

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 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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