Rekindling My Soul!

 

“Go ahead into life, full-blooded, courageous and leap for the adventure. But you must do it soon—before the summer of your youth has cooled off into caution. You are magnificently charming—and you come like a torrent. But you will be spent on the futility of little things. You are not a watercolor. You are carved out of life—and there can be no petty hesitancies about you.” Ruth Reichl

under the rock             It’s been a busy time! Lots of responsibilities; my Sweetheart has been ill, the Girlz With HeART program has expanded three-fold as increasing budget cuts continue to gouge children’s protective services, Cottage classes have been selling out, and I’ve been running in circles trying to keep all the colored balls in mid air. Do you ever have that “totally overwhelmed and completely under staffed” feeling? What do you do to replenish? How do you refill your tanks? What do you do to rekindle your inner fire?

I’ve been trying to create small islands of pure peace. Sunsets at this time of the year are just plain glorious sunriseand I’m trying to show up to watch as many as I can–breathing in, breathing out…

and making art…always such a heart-filling activity for me!flower 2

But, mostly, I’ve been deeply involved in a mandala art therapy group that is rekindling my soul.mandala 1

Mandalas are rich with traditions and symbolism. Each mandala is unique and considered a sacred object. The word mandala comes from a Sanskrit word meaning circle, and the etymology of the word itself actually means a container of essence. Carl Jung’s visionary ideas came from many influences, but without his theories, our awareness of the importance of mandalas would be limited. Jung believed that mandalas were snapshots of the subconscious and that they could help identify emotional fractures and then help recreate wholeness.

mandala 6

Mandalas have long been used as a healing and meditation tool. Many cultures from one end of the globe to another use the mandala as part of their beliefs – a way to tap into the soul or psyche. In art therapy, the therapeutic journey is the actual creation of the mandala itself rather than the final outcome. The mandala becomes a self-portrait of sorts of its creator. The emotions and feelings that are felt at the time of creation are transformed into the mandala.mandala 2

The only true structure to the mandala is the circular center. In many religions, this is the house of the deity(s) that are worshiped and for which the mandala was built. The center is often construed as the soul, the heart, the center of the universe itself. mandala 4It’s important not to lose sight of where you are coming from and where you are going on your therapeutic mandala journey.mandala 3

Mandala making in art therapy offers several benefits, including a higher level of self- awareness and, when one is entranced with the journey of creation itself, the heart rate, blood pressure and breathing all slow down and stabilize. For me, it has been a very special journey of finding the repeating patterns and recurring symbols in my life. It’s given me a chance to slow down and see the absolute beauty in the smallest details as they fit delicately into the larger context of my life. staircaseMandala making has been a pathway to new understanding and greater joy.

mandala 5

“Happiness belongs to those who are sufficient unto themselves. For all external sources of happiness and pleasure, are by their very nature, highly uncertain, precarious, ephemeral and subject to chance.” Arthur Schopenhauer

In this beautiful season of giving thanks and celebrating the abundance of our spirits, pause if you can, and celebrate for the beauty that surrounds us, the small moments of absolute joy. Rekindle your soul!

the life

Love and thanks giving. to you and yours…you are a blessing in my life!Happy ThanksgivingP.S. Please check out the new page “Marnie Is my Muse” by clicking on the banner on the header above this post–Marnie has some amazing classes coming up and is offering a FANTASTIC deal if you sign up early!

©Copyright, Kaitlin Meadows, 2014. All Rights Reserved.

 

By Kaitlin Meadows

Steampunking, Mask Making, & General Merriment (O My!)

 

Greetings and Happy, Beautiful Autumn To You!

Kait in Hat

Things have been hoppin’ at The Creative Cottage lately! Classes have been filling fast, dames have been creating like crazy,play time and laughter has been abounding! Life is beautiful and creativity is our happy life blood! Check this out! The Steampunk class

steampunk was a BLAST! I threw some old rusty cans and a pile of keys, gears, bottle caps, and old rusty treasures in the middle of the table and LOOK WHAT HAPPENED!

sharon's 2This is Sharon’s fanciful BogaWoga…check out the Elton John shades!

morgan'sThis is Morgan’s Magical Myrtle–isn’t the spring coming out of her head cool!

gogi's widgetsThese are Gogi’s Widgits

celeste'sAnd Celeste’s garden hanging, Luscious LoLa

cissie'sAnd isn’t this the most adorable owl on the planet–his name is Hoot and he’s Cissie’s creation!

Gogi created this fabulous Steampunk inspired necklace for her son…Gogi'sWOW!!!!! I’m always soooo impressed by the wildly creative,  rusty-lovin’ ladies who come to play at The Cottage!!!!!

Here are some recent masks that Anne, Celeste, and Cissie made and a wonderful papier mache turtle created by Mena in the last few weeks!mask 2maskmask 3

 

Hey, come on over–the creative FUN is here to share…we have nice women, great laughter, and CHOCOLATE! What’s not to love!

enjoy lifeP. S. Please sign up for the Bodacious Box in A Box class this coming Saturday…Book In A Boxand the Totally Tyvek class on Saturday the 22nd. They are both such fun…details by clicking on the Creative Cottage Classes tab on the top of this post!

tyvek booktyvek book 2I’d  love to see you at The Cottage soon! Life is waaaaay too short–please make time for having some creative fun!

 ©Copyright, Kaitlin Meadows, 2014. All Rights Reserved.

Kaitie The LadyBug Lady

 

 

buggie 2“The Ladybug wears no disguises. She is just what she advertises.

A speckled spectacle of spring, A fashion statement on the wing….

A miniature orange kite. A tiny dot-to-dot delight.”

~J. Patrick Lewis, “The Little Buggers

I LOVE Ladybugs! I always have.. and my nickname for most of my life has been “Kaitie Bug” so imagine my delight when my Sweetheart (who constantly surprises me with the best gifts ever!!) brought home a trillion ladybugs! bug bucket

Well, maybe not a trillion but, ye gads, look….oodles and oodles of ladybugs(1,500 if you’re counting!)oodles of bugs!

I had such a wonderful time spreading them around my garden one cool, recent morning…

“Lovely little ladybug sent from heaven above, please watch over my garden and fill it up with love.” ~Author Unknown

yikes!They were beautiful and lively and soooo eager to be free…

“This lucky little lady bug has landed here to stay To make my garden pretty and keep the weeds away.”  ~Author Unknown

bug on a leafIt’s the end of a very, very long, hot summer with more of its share of various “mercury in retrograde” misadventures…

but, finally,  the mornings and evenings in Tucson In November are luscious & cool…

the winter veggies and herbs are all planted and thriving and the ladybugs add such a dash of color and whimsy–who could keep from smiling!

“When strolling through the garden, If you should chance to see

A ladybug out walking,

Please say “hi” for me! For ladybugs are good bugs,

They help the garden grow

They will bring you good luck,

So always say “hello!” ~Author Unknown

ladybug lady 2I had such fun sprinkling them around on my pre-misted garden flowers as the autumn sun was just coming up…front 2and (I swear!) they seemed to be singing a happy song as they flitted around…

“I’m sending luck and wishes

All wrapped up in a hug

Good things should come your way

With this tiny ladybug. ~Author Unknown

It was such a beautiful surprise from my Sweetheart and made my day such a happy one…even Gus the dog seemed to love the delightful commotion!lady bug lady 3We love to shop at Siverbell Nursery (www.silverbellnursery.com) and my Beloved ordered them for me…to spread their beautiful, shiny, red-coated magic in my garden!front tubWhat JOY!!!–not only the ladybugs, but my Love Bunny himself, The Creative Cottage (and all of you who make it such a pleasure), and AUTUMN at last!!!!!!
buggie

“A small speckled visitor

Wearing a crimson cape

Brighter than a cherry

Smaller than a grape

A polka-dotted someone

Walking on my wall

A black-hooded lady

In a scarlet shawl.” ~Joan Walsh Anglund

It’s so easy to get caught up in all the chaos and war, the awful, mean-spirited political campaign negativity and the daily grinding news of a world gone mad…I find myself, more and more, needing the respite of the garden, the solace of my creative friends, the joy of my quiet domestic life to heal and nurture me. The ladybugs arrived just in time to remind me…

bougenvilla

“Oh ladybug, I wish you joy As you complete your garden chores. I’d like to put aside my work And join you in the out-of-doors!” ~Author Unknown

Lucky Ladybugs…Lucky Kaitie Bug!! Thank you my Sweetheart!
Happy Autumn To All!!!

autumn front yard

And remember…

“Hurt no living thing: Ladybird, nor butterfly, Nor moth with dusty wing.”

~Christina Georgina Rossetti

ladybug plush

 

Love, peace, laughter, and creativity heal so much!

P. S. Click the tab above on the top bar for  “Kaitlin’s Creative Cottage Classes” for a list of my November classes and come play!!!!

 

© Copyright, Kaitlin Meadows, 2014. All Rights Reserved.