WHAT I BELIEVE

“It’s a joy full life. I believe when all else fails love always wins. I believe in practicing courage every single day.

I believe kindness changes everything. I believe in telling our messy, complicated, beautiful stories.

I believe nothing is wasted and everything shapes us.

I believe in letting go and trusting the process.

I believe we are all part of something beautiful, something bigger, something deeply, profoundly, astonishingly…good. “

I love this quote from Kelly Rae Roberts (who is one of my heroines!)

      blooming 2

It’s exciting…next week I’ve been asked to give a presentation about “What I Believe” for about a hundred young women who want to become mentors.

At first I was utterly overwhelmed!

YIKES! What DO I believe?

Well, it turns out…it’s kinda simple really!

This is WHAT I BELIEVE

attract

And, yes, it’s definitely harder than it sounds–but so worth the effort!

Very early on in my own life I decided…

decide

 I believe life is about our choices and…

I choose

That old adage about “the company you keep” is also important…

greatness

And just try to…

where you are

and

beauty happy

It’s taken me a very long time, but now, I

yesterday

and, in my classes & counsel sessions with Cottage friends, I urge us all to…

future dreaming

I’ll tell these young women to…

remember who

and to…

work for a cause

I’ll tell them that they need to…

grateful

and remind them…

blessings

Finally, these are the lessons it’s taken me all my life to learn…

in the moment

embrace the mess

and

what's in heart

Above all else…

joy

and I believe that laughter is the best healing medicine of all!

smile again

It is my goal is to remind them that …

life

Soooo, what do YOU believe? What shaped and guided what you believe? How do you share what you believe with others? How have your beliefs changed?

 Click on the little white cloud at the top of this post and tell me!

And wish me luck at the big conference…

I am so humbled to be asked and so grateful to have beliefs that have served me so well that I can share!

Whatever else you do in life,

Believe with all your heart that you are a special, wonder-filled, amazing creature!

you matter

NOTICE: You are hereby allowed to be happy, to love yourself, to realize your worth, to believe in great things, and to be treated with love and respect.

Much Love From Kaitlin

© Copyright Kaitlin Meadows, 2015. All Rights Reserved.

Pictures and much inspiration from Pinterest.

HOLY, BEAUTIFUL MESS!

  “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” ~Mary Oliver Holy Mess

Living a life full of joy and purpose is a full time job! It requires constant attentiveness, mind-full-ness and TRUST. Trust that if you try your best to be honest and loving and kind, things will work out just fine. If you smell the roses, brew the fair trade coffee, fill the birdfeeders, donate your time to wonderful causes, love the important people in your life with all you heart, and spread your happiness widely, life can be so beautiful!

And yes , I know, I’m Susie Sunshine (it’s annoying to a lot of people!)–I can see the good in pretty much ANYTHING (or I make peace with it, try to learn from it, and later, sometimes, even discover that what I thought was a complete disaster, a huge mistake, or a catastrophic bungle, mysteriously brings something wonderful into my life!

“Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes.  Art is knowing which ones to keep.” ~ Scott Adams crayons

I like to use ALL the crayons, I love to make big, juicy messes, I’m happiest when the women who come to play at the Creative Cottage are laughing & sharing their remarkable stories together!

But don’t think my life is simple or perfect…I get flat tires, the laundry piles up, sometimes my dreams are dashed, occasionally people really hurt my feelings, and now & then (not often!) I have one of those days when I just want to stay in my jammies all day, watching old black & white Turner Movie Classics…

but MOSTLY, I’m utterly JAZZED by life, soooo grateful to be alive, amazingly blessed to be loved by the love of my life, so lucky to have so many fabulous friends who support the Creative Cottage, and incredibly grateful to have my sweet sister back in my life!

When my life gets messy–when the stress of too many commitments oppresses me, when the sad chaos of this crazy, dangerous world scares me breathless, when the curved bill thrasher pecks greedy holes in the first lovely little tomatoes

I choose to celebrate the sunrise…

good morning

admire the blooming peony,

peony

and embrace the imperfections, the chaos, the holy mess of this beautiful life! CreatiVity Has No Limits

I believe I am on the right path… writing poems, making art, mentoring the Girl With He ART, and loving (with my whole, wild, wide-open heart) my devoted mate, my amazing friends, my beautiful Creative Cottage, my crazy, wonderful, messy life! 

right path

Thank you for joining me on the path, for sharing the journey with me, for helping me up the steep parts, for sharing your lunch, for standing up on the high, windy peak, admiring the view with me!

I love you and I love the path that keeps me grateful for every moment I have to live this life and share it with you!

© Copyright, Kaitlin Meadows, 2015. All Rights Reserved. Art by the beautiful Kelly Rae Roberts

SO BLESSED!

 

blessedThis Kelly Rae Roberts collage says it soooo well!

I feel so blessed. Everything’s not perfect (is it ever?)…I have the requisite number of setbacks and heartbreaks, like you do!

For instance, my beloved old Subaru died this week and I have to let her go…BaRoo 2She’s been my devoted sidekick for 13 years and it’s been like the loss of a dear, dear family member…I loved her so much!!! Thank You Sweet Baru for all the years of shared adventures!

I’m not sure if  I can find a another car with as much soul…I’m a little scared about trying to find a good car I can afford on my tiny budget…but I just have to trust it will all work out!

Because, I believe,

“Most of the shadows of this life are caused by standing in one’s own sunshine.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

 and I want to stand in the radiant light of my life, count my blessings, and celebrate SPRING!!! in our glorious desert green heartand the beautiful wildflowers that are blooming everywhere 100_2790

and all the wild joy creativity brings me…CreatiVity Has No LimitsBut, mostly, I am grateful for you, my wonderful Cottage dames…my creative inspirations, my fabulous friends!

“Some people go to priests; others to poetry; I to my friends.”  ~Virginia Woolf

Thank you for being in my life, supporting my classes, sharing your love, and being my friends! I am so blessed!

The classes for March are posted (click on the Creative Cottage Classes tab at the top of the blog)—sign up quick–classes have been filling fast!

And please remember to come to our Fourth Year Anniversary Party on Saint Patrick’s Day!!!

Much Love and Gratitude To You…And many blessings of this fabulous season!

© Copyright, Kaitlin Meadows, 2015. All Rights Reserved.

IT’S COMPLICATED

 

no & yes

 

Lately I’ve been a little overwhelmed. I’m juggling the usual three dozen projects in mid air; I’m reading four library books at once, I have a whole flat of vegetable seedlings ready to go into the garden, the sewing machine is on my desk piled high with colorful fabric scraps, and I have a muse doll (named Sassy Pants!) just ready to come to life. But I have a trillion other pressing obligations: important meetings and conferences, administrative duties in a half dozen great organizations, the energetic Girlz, my wonderful counseling clients, dear friends needing special loving care, and a Sweetheart who’s been ill. But still…as I reported last week, I’m happy. Deep down. Happy. But at a sort of crossroads. I just can’t keep saying “yes” to everything and still have enough energy left for my creative life. Daaaaa!bed meditation

Where is the time to savor a delicious cuppa chi with some almond butter toast and just journal & dream for an hour?

Where is the time for just playing and being goofy?enjoy!

Where is the time to spend laughing with friends?

old friends

 

Where is the time to just get wonderfully messy making art! yourcreativityisagift

It’s complicated.

I have to learn to make the time for ME by whittling time away from all the other “stuff” I so over-fill my life with.  My friend May-Bella is a wonderful mentor in this learning process. She determinedly says “no thank you” to things that interfere with her spiritual and creative life. I want to learn how to do that!

First of all, I have to slow down ( as befits my advanced age!) and honor my shortened stay on the planet. Then, I have to heed this wisdom from Kelly Rae Roberts http://www.kellyraeroberts.com

 

you matter

 

It’s not easy! As I was writing this post, I got an email from my delightful friend Stephanie Bowman who is doing amazing work with the Biodiversity Group, asking me to help out with a tremendously worthwhile project…check out her work here:  www.BiodiversityGroup.org but I know I’m just stretched toooooo thin right now to help out without short changing the other responsibilities I have, but it makes me feel guilty and I’m beating myself up for feeling so selfish about my time…

I’m trying soooo hard to remember the quote (at the top of this post)  by Paulo Coehlo (The Alchemist)  but, just as I talked myself into stealing a little time to get my Sassy Pants muse doll out and make her a little cape from of a piece of repurposed velvet, the phone rings…”Kaitlin, could you take a group of avocational archaeologists out on a hike tomorrow?”…Sigh.

“It’s complicated,” I say to my friend…”I can’t this week, I’m trying to save some time for myself.” Silence. Long silence. And then, “Good for you! Nobody deserves it more!” she assures me.

I think I learned something very important. The world will get along just fine without me…and nobody but me can guard and cherish my precious time.

Try it! Try saying, “No, thank you, I have other plans…I want to spend time with my family, I have some art projects I’m eager to get to, or, I just need some ME time!”

Make your own time for magic, fun, friendship, and CREATIVITY!!  

And let’s compare notes on how to do it! First step: Make a date to come play at The Creative Cottage where time races by and we leave all the other “stuff” behind and  simply ENJOY LIFE!

Love and Hugs from the Time Bandit Kait

OUR FRAGILE WORLD

 

kaliThe news simply isn’t good. Terrorism, murder, mayhem. Incomprehensible hatred. Outrageous greed. Blizzard, famine, drought, deluge. Intolerance, ignorance, racism. These are the Kali times.

Sometimes my heart just splits open with pain. I find myself sobbing over the cruelty, the children killed, the planet ravaged. Frequently, I think there is no hope for us humans. Often, I feel, like my elders before me did, that the world has gone to hell in a hand basket and that we’ll never learn to embrace tolerance or practice peace.

And then…a rose I thought had long-ago died, blooms… bloom!or a wee hummingbird dashes to the feeder outside my kitchen window with sunlight glinting off his burnished emerald feathers, or a friend sends a handmade card that says “I love you even if you’re goofy,” or I meet a ten year-old girl battered by the world who is still so full of optimism and excitement about the future that my spirit revives and I regain my wild hopefulness again! It has been that kind of week.

kelly rae roberts 2 This is the work of Kelly Rae Roberts…and her message is clear.

“There is a light in this world, a healing spirit more powerful than any darkness we may encounter. We sometimes lose sight of this force when there is suffering, too much pain. Then suddenly, the spirit will emerge through the lives of ordinary people who hear a call and answer in extraordinary ways.” ― Mother Teresa

As Tucson remembers and celebrates its resilience from terrors of the past, as musicians continue to make music and poets continue to write poems and peace-makers continue to stand for kindness, and compassionate souls continue to tirelessly care for those wounded by war and disease… I remember that we all have a choice. We can wallow in grief, we can stoke our bitterness, we can join the perpetual “haters” or we can raise our hearts up to the light, desert scene 4 we can work to save the planet, and we can practice, practice, practice peacefulness in our own lives.

“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

So, with your help, I choose to celebrate my life as an amazing series of miracles and joy-sparkled moments. I choose to nourish my capacity for compassion. I choose to use my energy to uplift hope and work toward a more tolerant world. And you help me with that mission every single day! By coming to The Cottage to share your stories, to exercise your creativity, and to build our friendships as sister allies. By donating art supplies for the Girlz With HeART Project. By doing what you can, in your own special ways, to be the bringers of light, the tenders of love’s flame, the givers of warmth in a cold world.

Thank You! I am honored to be a part of our loving, caring, generous tribe! Keep the faith. Stand in the light. Be a peace pilgrim. Radiate Love!Happy New Year

“Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” ~Desmond Tutu

P. S. Look for the new roster of February classes by clicking the Cottage Classes tab at the top of this post–we have a beautiful Creativity Chix Artist Date for Februaryvisiting Ben’s Bells to make bells and celebrate hope! Register for classes right this moment–January classes all sold out in a flash (Thank You, Thank You!!)

Sending you love,

Kaitlin, Still Full of Hope

© Copyright, Kaitlin Meadows, 2015. All Rights Reserved.