Ms. Tizzy Britches

ju8

That is what I do. In everything I touch. In how I live. In what I love. In what I make. I CREATE!

My beloved granddaughter Emma (7 years old) has a wonderful nickname for me–Grandma Tizzy Britches. She says she named me that “cuz you’re always in a whirlwind Gran.”

But last week when she asked me, “what’s you “super power Nana?,”  I was stumped.

I “used” to be a lot of things.

I’ve ridden on the back of a circus elephant, driven a race car, and delivered several babies. I’ve traveled all over the world, written several volumes of poetry, worked as both a paleontologist & an archaeologist, and rescued & mended wounded wildlife.

But, mostly, I believe my true super power is my creativity.

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What can I tell you?

It’s who I am.

I make stuff.

Usually in a tizzy of joy!

I make stuff out of anything and everything. Words, paint, collage, journals, rusty stuff, clay, gardens, and LIFE: big fat juicy wonderful complicated simple LIFE is what I make mostly.

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My creativity is what makes me so curious, so appreciative, so genuinely in awe of the natural world and all her critters.

My creativity is what makes my mind leap and my spirits rise and my heart spill over with love.

My creativity fuels and feeds and nourishes my soul. It makes me whole.

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For a very long time in my life I worked hard to “fit in,” to “play the game,” to “go along to get along.”

Finally I realized, I’ve NEVER “fit” anywhere, I hate games, and I’d rather be a wild, inspired renegade than a half-lifer, tiptoeing around trying to be invisible.

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When (seven years ago!) I hatched this crazy idea that I could create a magical  little studio that looked like an enchanted cottage in the woods where wimmin could come to play and talk and share and cry and make art, I finally knew who I was and what I wanted my life to be about.

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So, I’d rather be Ms. Tizzy Britches than most anything else in the whole wide world (including Botswana!)

Because…

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I’d always rather be outside the lines…out of the box…in the thick if some big,  messy, creative project that thrills my heart in the company of wise women who are passionate and feisty and full of creative energy.

I’d rather live my wild passionate, effusive, engaged, complicated, over-booked & under-staffed life of pure joy rather than “belong” or be “accepted” or not ruffle any danged feathers!

I want to inspire my tribe of fellow “tizzies” to

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I want to voluptuously live (and mentor living )a wildly creative life…

and what is that?

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I want to triumph over my fears for the earth, for all good people of the earth, for our children, for our values, for our very lives…

I want to not squander my life away in sadness or live with regrets about what I might have done…

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I want to make stuff!

I want glue and glitter and paint and poems…

I want music and movies and gardens and books that keep me up all night…

I want sunsets and beach sand and redwood trees and laughter.

And, I want to share my endless, joyful creativity with you!

So please come play at the Creative Cottage soon…join a lively, luscious, laughing tribe of creatives! Because…

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Now go make something!

And sign up for June classes at The Creative Cottage!

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All Love (And Creativity!)

From Ms. Tizzy Britches

 

 

 

 

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Spring Vacation (In My Mind!)

Spring!

And I’ve got it bad!

I’m in a happy, befuddled daze.

Muddling along, fevered and  grinning.

No ambition.

Fuzzy and unfocused.

Prone to long bouts of daydreaming.

Lost in my own vivid imagination.

I’ve been promising myself for weeks

that I’d sit down and write you a long love letter about it…

but the days slip by and I get distracted…

you know…

Spring Fever!

I’m in the midst of a huge whirlwind of activity–

(as usual)–

classes, workshops, medical appointments, community commitments,

family matters, counseling sessions, plus the happy, complicated logistics

of plain, old everyday LIFE!

There’s a lot of emotion streaming through me right now…

but I think I’ve finally found words it…

So in my day dreams I am taking a bit of a bohemian vacation.

I’ve packed my colorful imaginary luggage

and taken my gypsy wagon to an enchanted fairy realm

where there is peace and beauty…

and no twittering from a twit.

I imagine my days are completely free here

and I amuse myself in a thousand tiny ways…

slow stitching…

painting salvaged old chairs,

& picking bunches of butterfly-kissed flowers.

In my magical little nest,

I imagine myself swathed in color and calm,

resting and reading,

making art all day with my dog Gus.

I pretend I am a child again–

free of all responsibilities

except living fully,

in every moment,

with wild enthusiasm

and complete awe.

And when I imagine myself as a wild, winsome

heathen adventuress and bohemian artiste,

I wear clothes like this

and carry a little bag like this, full of enchantments.

When I find myself curling up for a nap

with my cat Max purring in my ear,

I am bathed in lush color

and gentle, muted light.

So, if you’re looking for me,

please come join me in my spring fever dream!

Behind the beaded curtain,

up the stairs into the radiance of the moon glow,

into the pure magic of our wildest imaginations…

where we can leave behind

all our woes and worries,

all the torments of politics and cruel power.

In the evening,

we’ll make a little fire to comfort the darkness

and cherish together

every moment we have

on this swirling blue planet

in a sea of glittering stars.

Let us pull together,

never far from each other’s hearts,

always holding up the chalice

of our friendship together.

Let us always…

(Note: copies of this beautiful print available from Kaitie Daisy on Etsy!)

Love and Love and More Love To You

(cuz there’s never too much of that!)

And a very Happy Spring!

From Gypsy Kait

Merriment Marauder

P. S. Please check out my April & May schedule of classes and sign up quick–

this is our bizzee season at The Creative Cottage and I don’t want you to miss out on the fun!

©Copyright, Kaitlin Meadows, 2018. All Rights Reserved

Wild Women Rise!

now-4

Tis the season to join hands in circle,

to come together in peace,

to drum and dance and sing and pray.

To laugh and love and celebrate

all we have to be grateful for

instead of lamenting all we’ve lost.

It’s time for us to pull together

in our creative tribal communities

and invent new ways to survive and thrive.

No sense tryin’ to autopsy the corpse of what used to be,

or what we’d like it to be,

or what it could have been.

No sense tryin’ to figure it all out…

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It’s time for us wild wimmin to get at the serious work of re-dreaming the world!

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I’m excited about the new swell of energy and focus I am feeling in our tribe…

the re-inspired determination to stand up for justice and kindness and truth…

our mutual agreement NOT to bring anymore talk of politics

or the hateful ones

into our sacred Cottage space.

I know it’s scary but…

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We recognize that we are sensitive, fragile beings

and that this election cycle has wounded many of us deeply.

now-3 (4)

But we are not alone.

When we come together at The Creative Cottage

we help each other over the rough patches

and begin the work of healing together.

We make art while we gather  because

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and many before us have used their art to save their lives!

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At The Creative Cottage

we have vowed to shift our work to deeper places,

to make art that matters,

to find new ways to stand up,

to speak out,

and to make a positive difference.

We aren’t opting out.

We’re not going away.

We’re not giving up…

we know that

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We took a few weeks to let it all sink in,

to grieve,

to be afraid of what our future might be but…

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and we have decided to use our creative spirits to

now-8 (7)

to reclaim our power,

refocus our resolve,

and rebuild hope

in whatever ways we can,

with renewed determination,

hands & hearts joined.

I am proud of you for stepping up,

for not losing hope,

for being the brave wild fierce gentle creative wimmin you are!

now-14 (8)

So here’s to moving forward,

arm in arm,

hand in hand,

heart to heart.

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Come join the Creative Cottage tribe of warrior renegades in re-dreaming the world!

We have work to do and joy to share!

My Love Is With You,

Kaitlin

© Copyright Kaitlin Meadows, 2016. All Rights Reserved.

Photo Credits With Thanks:

(1)  http://www.huffingtonpost.ca

(2) http://www.orangejerimiah-2911.com

(3) #manifestjustice@instagram.com

(4) http://www.psycho2go.com

(5) http://www.artsyforager.com

(6) http://www.thefreshhuesblog.com

(7) caazolin.tumblr.com

(8) http://www.kolettehall.wordpress.com

 

Letting Go!

Learning to go with the floooooow…

aug blog 8

Image from http://www.artprojectsforkids.org

(Well, I’m trying!)

But sometimes life just throws you for a loop

and unravels all your well-woven plans.

Case in point?

My dear, caring, thoughtful friends wanted to throw me an amazing little 70th birthday party.

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Image from the wonderful collection of Inge prints: http://www.ingelook.com

A date was picked, a place was selected, food & games were discussed.

It was going to be mermaid themed pool party at Lucy’s beautiful home.

marnie mermaid

Image from http://www.marnieismymuse.com

Mermaid Marnie was going to be in charge of festive activities.

Anne was gonna send out e-vites and keep the fuss to a minimum for me.

Sounded like a perfect plan.

I must admit,

at first I was scared.

I’m just not a birthday party type girl.

I hate all the fuss and (believe it or not!) I’m excruciatingly shy.

But these wonderful friends persisted

and plans were rolling along…

frankly, I started to get a little tiny bit excited…

when BAM!!!

Life stepped in.

Unbeknownst to me, my beloved Albert had been hatching a plan

to SURPRISE me

with a week-long reunion with family & friends.

Talk about abundance,

count your blessings,

life is good!

But whoops, what about the party???

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Oh my gosh, my friends had worked so hard…what was I to do?

When it became clear that life had other plans for me,

I was forced to cancel the party

and proceeded to make travel arrangements.

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Image: let go and enjoy the ride from Etsy.com

“Some people believe holding on and “hanging in there” are signs of great strength. However, there are times when it takes much more strength to know when to let go and then do it.”
Ann Landers

But there were bumps and tangles–

getting a whole raggle-taggle family together 

via planes, trains, buses, yaks, and clown cars

is harder than it looks!

Like my sister Kim in North Fork,

too much of a good thing

can be just toooo much!

Kim volunteered to grow all the sunflowers

for her daughter Michelle’s September wedding.

She plotted and planned and consulted the garden fairies

and planted hundreds of sunflowers for the wedding.

But, because of screwy weather

(and, I can’t help but think, the wicked sense of humor of garden fairies),

the sunflowers are all blooming like crazy NOW

(waaaaay too early!)

sunflowers Kim

Sunflowers on Kim’s hearth

My take-away from all this?

We can make our big, luscious plans

but life sometimes has another script for us.

Our job is to make the best of it–whatever it is.

“Letting go helps us to to live in a more peaceful state of mind and helps restore our balance. It allows others to be responsible for themselves and for us to take our hands off situations that do not belong to us. This frees us from unnecessary stress.”  Melody Beattie

But, in a wonderful, ironic, and oh so comical twist,

when the dust settled and all the tickets were all in hand,

it turns out I’m leaving a couple of days AFTER my birthday.

So here’s the new plan…

I’m just gonna go with the flow…

relax, have fun, and celebrate my birthday with you all–

no big party, no big hoopla, just cupcakes and laughter.

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Please come join me at The Creative Cottage on my 70th birthday, Saturday, September 17th, from 10 to 2 for a little cupcake celebration.

Pop in for  some tasty morsels, some delightful co-mingling with friends, and some hearty giggles at my expense.

Hope you can come!

aug 2 blog

Image from: http://www.facebook.com/ShutUpImStillTalking

Here is my new mantra–thanks to Lucy:

She Let Go

She let go. Without a thought or a word… She just let go.

She let go of the fear. She let go of the judgments.

She let go of the confluence of opinions Swarming around her head.

She let go of the committee of indecision within her.

She let go of all the ‘right’ reasons.

Wholly and completely.. Without hesitation or worry.. She just let go.

She didn’t ask anyone for advice. She didn’t read a book on how to let go. She didn’t search the scriptures. She just let go.

She let go of all of the memories that held her back. She let go of all of the anxiety …that kept her from moving forward.

She let go of the planning and all of the calculations …about how to do it just right.

She didn’t promise to let go. She didn’t journal about it.

She didn’t write the projected date in her Day-Timer. She made no public announcement ..and put no ad in the paper.

She didn’t check the weather report ..or read her daily horoscope. She just let go.

She didn’t analyze whether she should let go. She didn’t call her friends to discuss the matter. She didn’t do a five-step Spiritual Mind Treatment.

She didn’t call the prayer line. She didn’t utter one word. She just let go.

No one was around when it happened. There was no applause or congratulations.

No one thanked her or praised her. No one noticed a thing. Like a leaf falling from a tree… She just let go.

There was no effort. There was no struggle. It wasn’t good and it wasn’t bad.

It was what it was.. and it is just that.

In the space of letting go.. she let it all be.

A small smile came over her face.

A light breeze blew through her. And the sun and the moon shone forevermore.

from: Rev. Saphire Rose Ernest Holmes

let go

Image from Facebook/Zen To Zany

LOVE LOVE LOVE FROM KAITIE BUG

Learning (ever so slowly!) to LET GO!

© Copyright, Kaitlin Meadows, 2016. All Rights Reserved.

HAPPY!

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It’s the choice I make minute by minute every day!

Despite troubles and woes and setbacks and challenges.

Despite all the bad jujus in the world.

Despite chronic pain and annoying infirmities.

Despite the loss of old friends…

cherished delusions…

and a few little dreams.

Despite mean people

and unspeakable acts of terror.

Despite floods and fires.

Despite EVERYTHING.

I, FINALLY,

(is it too late to be a late bloomer?)

came to realize (daaaaaa)

that I’m in charge of my own happiness.

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Despite some pretty intense nudgings toward more pious activities,

some very serious careers and responsibilities,

a long “nose to the grindstone” sort of a life…

pardon me, but these days,

I’m going for happy!

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Okay, let’s talk…

go get a cup of tea and hunker down.

Some of you have written me–

all concerned and sad that, after our glorious Summer Creativity Camps,

I decided to pass the torch forward for my Girlz With HeArt Project.

Not to worry.

We did a SPECTACULAR job for over five years!

It was a glorious experience! It was a miracle!

It changed my life and their lives and your lives through sharing their stories and shenanigans with you.

They inspired me and humbled me and broke my heart and filled it back up with pure love.

Their grit and grace.

Their resilience.

Their lively spunkiness and sass.

Their hopefulness in the face of so many heartaches…

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It was a totally intense, completely demanding, and incredibly rewarding experience!

But, as the old She Bear Kaitlin was emerging in my archetypal life,

I began to receive firm instructions from the universe:

learning to let go and let be,

learning to get still and pray,

learning to trust and give thanks.

AND to know when it was time

to pass the medicine wand on to eager, capable hands reaching up to carry it for the next exciting leg of the journey.

Powerful lessons.

Still processing.

Many of you were actively, hands-on, every-day, deep-in this program with me. THANK YOU.

Many of you cheered us on, gathered supplies, shared gifts, bought clothes, transported carloads of girlz. THANK YOU.

Many of you slipped an extra gift into the collection box on your way out and whispered “For the Girlz.” THANK YOU.

It was such an honor to share our beautiful, heart-breaking, magical, impossible vision with you.

We did it–together–against all odds, we touched the lives of so many young women and they touched our lives too.

THANK YOU. Each and every. All and then some.

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Some of you are worried because I’ve actively cut back my summer schedule to avoid the heat-stress illness that laid me low last summer

and you think that portends the end of The Cottage. No.

Actually, I’ve posted some new classes for July (check them out by clicking the Cottage Classes tab) and

I’m really excited about a new project I’m incubating that deepens and intensifies the way members of our little tribe can contribute our wisdom to others.

It’s called SAGE SISTERS: A Council of Conscious Eldership–more about it very soooooon!

Some of you have lamented that I’m not so available, accessible, or “out & about “as I once was.

True.  Fast nearing 70, I’m getting a little crotchety.

These days, I’m inclined to curl up in my home; reading, making art, working in clay, tending my garden, learning to relax instead of racing about on various exciting errands of intellect or passion. But it’s all good. It is time for that. It is the season for that. It is my new “normal.”

I’m sorry you can’t see it through my eyes.

All the changes and adjustments have been made after much introspection and prayer.

And a very grateful heart.

Each choice has been totally life-enhancing for me. Trust me.

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Sure, it’s been hard. I’m not gonna pretend otherwise.

I’ve been talking about it for months and months and months…

roll down through the past blog posts to see the many times I’ve spoken of my urgent need to slow down.

To breathe. To rest.

To dismantle my enormous life of over-commitment.

To ease back from too many responsibilities.

To learn to stop stoking a life-long tendency to over achieve.

I ain’t Super Woman (and I have no desire to be)

but you may not have noticed cuz (in the past!) my actions said otherwise.

Nope. It ain’t been easy.

I default to my old ways more that you can imagine.

Sometimes I still bite off more than I can chew…

but I’m learning to nibble, to savor, to take great pleasure in small bites.

I’m still not very good at it.

BUT I’m getting better. Little by little. One day at a time.

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Lemmie tell ya this: watching people die for a living (hospice nursing),

watching people create in order to re-enchant their souls (The Cottage),

mentoring young souls to soar and dream and leap into their lives (The Girlz With HeART)

taught me that life is too precious and fleeting and magical to get stolen by the petty b.s. of daily life.

Drama (and her ugly twin sister melo-drama) are wickedly bad habits I’m determined to leave behind.

I wanna be HAPPY

but it’s a full time job pushing off the joy-killers and the hate-spewers.

I wanna be HAPPY

NOT when everything is in perfect balance and I live in the pages of Bella Grace.

NOT after I put the needs of everyone else in the whole world in front of my own.

NOT when the dishes are done, the laundry is folded, and the dust bunnies are vanquished.

NOW!

happy

So this blog post is all about choosing happiness. Consciously. Daily. Against all odds.

Not to say my heart doesn’t break over the Orlando massacre, the Flint water poisonings, the endless wars waged in the name of peace.

Not to say that I have opted out of caring or being compassionate or contibuting a thousand tiny acts of good in my life. No.

But, as an elder now, I see how predictably people as hyper-sensitive, as super empathetic, as easily outraged by injustice as I am

are swept under, are devoured and spit out by the world if we don’t embrace self-nurturing behaviors.

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So this is what I choose. Happy.

NOT blind, sugar-coated, candy-land obliviousness to the sorrows of the world.

NOT unfeeling, unthinking, self-serving, mean, self-centered arrogance or worse. No.

Just happy, grateful, honored to be alive, thrilled to have you as my friends and allies on the journey. Happy.

Happy. With the tiny moments–

the hummingbird bathing merrily under the spray from my pre-dawn garden watering,

the good book that inspires a shiver of awe that we have writers who so perfectly capture life,

the beautiful butterscotch and burgundy sunset through monsoon clouds.

Happy and blessed that I have the wonderful pleasure of spending these last years of my life with my beloved life companion Albert

who makes me smile everyday…daring me on to new challenges

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and greater joy!

happy too

“You don’t stop laughing when you grow old, you grow old when you stop laughing.” George Bernard Shaw

I want to be HAPPY

like these wonderful mentors who have struggled with much, been defeated by much, and endured much

but who chose to be happy.

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Ready to party... former South African President Nelson Mandela.

Happy like children who find joy in the moment.

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Happy that I have such amazing, goofy, dear friends to share the adventure with.

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happy 9

Just plain old, every day, heart splitting Happy!

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We can’t cure the world of sorrows, but we can choose to live in joy. –Joseph Campbell

So if you want me, listen for the laughter…

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and watch for the delight!

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And I double dog DARE YOU to click on this song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JRMOMjCoR58

and dance and laugh and cry and BE HAPPY!

Much Love and Big Dollops of Happiness (with sprinkles on top!)

Kaitlin

(They don’t call me the Mistress of Merriment for nuthin’!)

© Kaitlin Meadows, 2016 All Rights Reserved

Images thanks to Pinterest

Wild Woman Rises!

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Lately I’ve been lamenting…

about feeling old (and in the way)…

crotchety & dowdy.

 I am less able to run & leap & dare & dream

and more inclined to just putter at home

than go out and save the world.

Global catastrophes;

war, famine, plague, and unmitigated cruelty

have shaken me to the core.

Dear family members 

and many beloved friends

are going through incredibly hard times

with health, financial, and family challenges.

I find myself less able to multi-task these days.

Juggling too many balls in mid-air

just doesn’t appeal to me anymore.

I’m having had a hard time adjusting

to our highly technological (and thus, less human) world.

Suddenly, it seems,

I have so little time left

to have all the big adventures

I was sure I’d already have by now!

wild slip

I remember thinking as a child that no one

was gonna take the “wild” out of me.

I was determined never to grow up.

Never to conform.

Never to be afraid to live the wild, succulent life I dreamed of!

And then complexities of real life ensnared me.

Surviving a less than ideal childhood.

Getting a college education.

Jobs. Marriage. Kids. Career. Divorce.

Death. Disappointment. Set-backs.

Joy. Accomplishment. Travel.

What happened to the wild, excited child in me?

you-were-wild-once-Isadoa-Duncan

This week I got to thinking…

most of the stuff that “held me back”

or constrained me into being a “good girl”

is long gone.

I don’t have to impress a soul,

or live up to my “potential”

or “strive” in general.

I can reclaim my wildness now.

Wear what I like…(comfortable, colorful, arty),

Go where I like… (gray-haired ladies are almost invisible!)

Stay up until 3 a.m. working on an art journal page.

I can speak my mind

without fear I might be “over-stepping my bounds”

or, “gosh o’ mighty, heaven forbid!”

saying something “politically incorrect.”

I no longer fret about what others think of me

or fuss about how my hair looks.

I simply, happily, and FINALLY

feel at home in my own skin,

at peace with my own life,

able to remember

and to forget,

learning something new everyday

but continuing to honor archaic values,

deeply instilled.

I am free now to live my own life:

not my mother’s or the nun’s lives,

not the lives of my friends or

those who might judge.

The Wild Woman is coming back…

lumbering out of her safe cave…

stretching and hungry,

curious and eager

to explore.

I am…

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and ready to reclaim my wild & succulent life!

Won’t you join me?

Cottage classes for April & May are now posted–

(click on the Creative Cottage Classes tab above).

It’s time–

you deserve it–

if not now,

when?

Make a commitment to yourself

to make room for friendship and laughter

and the deep solace of good women

gathered in circle, sharing their lives.

wildwoman

Remember your Wild Woman

and let her come out to play!

Giggles guaranteed.

(And there will be chocolate!)

© Copyright, Kaitlin Meadows, 2016. All Rights Reserved.

 

Love From The Mistress of Merriment

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Hearts from Belinda Fireman (www.belindafireman.wordpress.com)

I have definitely felt the LOVE lately!

From you, my clients and friends at The Cottage,

from my family and community,

and from my Beloved Albert who is a constant source of joy!

blog 2-12-3(from homegrownhospitality.typepad.com)

I’ve been in a real tizzy of creativity

my art journal is spilling over with inspirations…

I’m starting to get really excited about

exciting new spring classes I have planned for The Creative Cottage…

and I love my Tuesday night clay class

where my inner mud woman can stretch out & play.

Art making is my salvation and my healing…

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AND, guess what, we’re going camping this week!

I’m soooo jazzed!

I love camp fires and hiking about and lazing around and reading

and just breathing deep in the beautiful outdoors.

(I’m taking my art journal too and that will keep me busily happy making art!)

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So thank you sooo much for the LOVE!

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(painting by Jim Dine)

I hope you are in a magnificent creative surge too!

I hope you are dancing in the kitchen,

watching the butterflies dash about your garden,

singing while you play,

and remembering to feed your soul

the great and abiding gift of making ART!

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Spreading the LOVE around is my sacred task–

come on over to The Creative Cottage

if you need a little

or if have a little to share.

Meanwhile,

LOVE (oodles & oodles of it!)

From Kaitlin,

Mistress of Merriment

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Copyright, Kaitlin Meadows, 2016. All Rights Reserved.

HEART FIRE!

House of Heart

These long, hot, sultry summer days offer great opportunities for me to fill my heart with all my favorite things…reading a great book (I’m soooo enjoying the writings from the Dark Mountain Project ), going out to hear our amazing local music (this week the incredible “I Hear Voices” with special guests Sabra Faulk & Heather Hardy–contact Kathy to see if there are any seats left: Kathleen Harris: knharris82@gmail.com), and seeing inspiring movies (“A Little Chaos” about a revolutionary landscape designer commissioned to construct King Louis XIV’s sumptuous garden at Versailles this week at our local art film theater treasure The Loft).

That’s about all I can manage with all the long hours it takes to keep my beloved critters and gardens at WildHeart Ranch thriving through the summer. 

june garden 3

That and doing Summer Creativity Camp with the Girlz With HeART Program that I mentor. These sassy, spunky 7 to 12 year-old little dervishes inspire, delight, and utterly exhaust me (in a good way!)…AND, offering classes at The Creative Cottage for cool wimmin like you to come play, laugh and make art together!!!

My heart’s on fire with joy and gratitude!

heart fire

And, Saturday will be our Fifth Annual Frida Kahlo Birthday Party and Open House at The Cottage…Come on over and enjoy the festivities! (feel free to bring your friends who might enjoy a glimpse at The Cottage!)

frida

Frida’s Birthday Party Open House: Saturday, July 11, 10 am to Noon: Our annual celebration of our patron saint Frida. We’ll have a little art making adventure and share another wonderful opportunity to celebrate Frida together! Please come join me for a few hours of free fun, frolic, and yummy summer fruit & cake!

frida 2

Meanwhile, remember to stoke your heart full of summer delights, stay cool, pray for rain, and get your red ladybug bubber boots out–just time to play in the monsoon puddles!

red bubber boots

Love & Merriment,

Kaitlin

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

LEARNING TO LIVE WITH WHAT IS

art quote

Summer in Tucson, Arizona. Temperatures in the 100’s. Utterly sizzling days that don’t cool off much at night. Glaring light. Shriveled plants.

Too hot to go out and play. Too hot to work in the garden. Too hot. Tooooo HOT!

I HATE summer in Tucson, Arizona. My spirit shrivels with the plants. 

I’m a transplanted California beach and mountain girl. I need green.

creek roar

I need large bodies of water. I need shade and cool and spending my days outside. I need kayaking on the river with my beautiful sister Kim.

Kait Up A Creek

I need playing at Ocean Beach with my pals Marnie and Karen.

Beach 14-13

I need to “Live in the sunshine, swim in the sea, drink the wild air.” Emerson

Beach Sunset 5

I need anything but this sweltering, unrelenting HOT!!!

But I’m here. I live here with my Beloved in a little house that is full of love and laughter and good times. My wonderful Creative Cottage is here where my amazing friends come to create. The Girlz With HeART are here to bless me every day with their optimism and joy.

This is where I am! Here. Tucson, Arizona. And for many months a year it is the most wonderful place in the world to be. But summer makes me forget all that…I dread it coming, I complain when it arrives, and I grouse every day that it goes on.

And then something amazing happens to make me soooo grateful to live in Tucson, Arizona again (even in the summertime!)

It happened last Sunday morning. My Sweetheart and I were out before dawn to get the watering done before it got too hot.

We discovered our ceres cacti were in radiant bloom!

ceres

We’d been watching the buds form, checking the status of their plumping every day. But it’s always such a delicate dance–did we get rain at just the right time, are the night temperatures warm enough, will all the elements come together for their amazing bloom?

And that morning, magically, dozens of them burst open to enchant us in the cool morning air, the hour of golden rising light.

ceres 3

We stood in absolute awe. We inhaled deeply their intoxicating fragrance. We watched the bees nuzzle into the pearly petals in an absolute swoon of excited pleasure. We watched the bunnies

jack

and the quail happily bopping around. We marveled at the cardinals, curved bill thrashers, doves, and finches celebrating at the feeders. We delighted at the antics of the young road runner. Roadrunner-1-1-15

It takes two hours every day, working together, to keep our lovely oasis afloat but it is soooo worth it.

All this long, hot summer, I will remember the fragile blossoms and their soft perfume.

ceres 6

It’s all about making peace with what is. Being grateful for what is. Being attentive to what is. Celebrating what is!

We love our small, rural, universe that embraces the natural world and her creatures. We find these moments here so nourishing and we feel so blessed to be able to share them.

The world seems an increasingly dangerous and unpredictable place. Often people seem oblivious & unfeeling–if not downright hostile & unkind. We are getting older and more rickity. We live on a very frayed shoestring that barely covers expenses. Our days of significant travel, summer vacations, or new  possesssions are long gone.

But we are blessed. Beyond measure. We are blessed. By this little island of sanctuary. By our friends and critters. By our love for one another. Blessed!

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“And above all watch,

with glittering eyes,

the whole world

around you

because the greatest secrets

are always hidden

in the most unlikely places.

those who don’t believe in magic

will never find it.”

Roald Dahl

Keeping looking for the Magic.

Keep finding moments of Joy.

Love one Another.

Come play at The Creative Cottage.

Happy Summer Solstice

© Copyright Kaitlin Meadows 2015. All Rights Reserved.

 

 

 

 

MUCH BETTER–THANK YOU!!!!!

elephant

Whooooosh! I don’t believe I’ve ever been so ill!

One day happy, full of energy, my calendar full of fantastic stuff to do…and overnight, out-of-the-blue, WHAM!!! Knocked flat!!! No warning. No tags back. Five days of impossibly high fever, constant retching, zero energy, unable to keep even a tiny sip of water down. It was all I could do to just hold onto the edge of the wildly spinning planet for dear life!

Amazing how all of one’s totally vital plans, absolutely essential meetings, and incredibly crucial comings and goings just fall away!

After the initial waves, the resulting chaos, and the very slow recovery, I had me-self a good, hard think on my life.  I’ve been burning the candle at both ends (and sometimes in the middle too!) for far to long, all the while dispensing such lovely platitudes about slowing down, letting go, taking more time to play. I meant to take my own advice. I did. I really did. But I hadn’t quite gotten ’round to it yet! Daaa!

Well, being curled in a fetal position for a week really made me rethink my options. I promised myself (if I ever stopped retching!) that I’d change up my life. So over the weekend I did. Finally. At last. Long overdue but never too late!

Girlz With HeART

I’d spent a solid month getting the Girlz With HeART mentees (sorry, that sounds like a herd of small manatees) through their end of school year testings and graduations. They are wonderful, lively, energetic, needy, demanding, fantastic young women but I’m getting dangerously close to 70 years old and I’ve just plain run out of energy to be the center of their universes.  Vain glorious proud me believed no one else would be up to the task. No one could do it as well, as passionately, as selflessly as ME. Silly woman!

“Things don’t really get solved.  They come together and they fall apart.  Then they come together and fall apart again.  Its just like that.  The healing comes from letting there be room for all this to happen: room for the grief, for relief, for misery, for joy.”  Pema Chodron

So, armed with my new sense of humility (and human frailty!), I finally fashioned a larger consortium to take on the most acute responsibilities and challenges of my Girlz With HeART program. It’s been a very interesting  (and humbling!) process letting go of total control. I’m thrilled with the new, young, excited souls who have stepped up to add their own wonderful energy and vision to the day-to-day intensive summer months with the Girlz for me. The work, the solace, the mentoring, and the creativity will go on–re-inspired, re-enthused and I will get a little break! I am so grateful!

Blooming

The upshot of this sudden bout with mortality (geez–after a week of constant barfing, the word “upshot” makes me a little nervous!) was a huge lightning flash of revelation about ways I want to re-sculpt my life. Having the luxury (well, more like the occasion) to have a few days to think about my life, I decided to apply the lesson of “letting go” to several other huge responsibilities. I won’t bore you with the details–suffice to say there will be a lot more FUN and NAPS and PLAY and HOMEBODY TIME in my life!!! I’ll have time to watch things bloom–to read a book–to giggle with my Sweetheart!

“It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power.” Alan Cohen

So check out my June & July Creative Cottage classes (click on the Cottage Classes tab at the top of the blog) and come play…let’s share our creativity and practice enjoying our lives together!

A thousand, million, trillion “thank you’s” to my fabulous husband Albert who cared for me so lovingly and thoughtfully! Thank you, too, all for your cards and calls and wonderful well-wishes! You bless me with your love!

Welcome to a summer of fun at Katlin’s Creativity Camp!!

Love & Gratitude From KaitieBug

library books 9

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