Things I want to remember

I strap him into his car seat, close the door then walk round and get in the other side, next to him. He looks at me with a smile so I get really close and whisper: “hello.” “Hello” he whispers back. It’s the first time I’ve heard him whisper. So unexpected and cute.

His words are starting to include more abstracts, like help, blue, purple, cold, catch, pop, as well as things, like hat, hair, egg, owl, house, balloon, cake. He pronounces elephant “emmett.” He’s also joining-up words to make little sentences: “Look daddy!” “Hello mummy.”

Sing a Simple Song by Sly and the Family Stone comes on the radio. Noah’s daddy starts doing a funny dance round the kitchen, so I go in and start dancing too, which gets Noah dancing between us. And then his mummy joins us, and we all bust some moves on the kitchen floor. Impromptu Sunday dance parties are the best.

He likes to play with the contents of my make up bag while i’m putting my face on. He uses the tiny eyebrow comb to brush his hair. And he LOVES when i use the hairdryer on his hair. He points the hairdryer, looks up at me and says “yes?”

We’re in the car again, driving home. He’s chatting away to himself, as he does, when I hear him say: “Nana. Daddy. Shoo-she. No-no.” No-no is his word for Noah and he points to himself when he says it. He’s just listed everyone in the car.

Highlight of 2012 so far: walking into the spare bedroom to find Noah and his nana both jumping on the bed. Words fail me… :)

Something for the weekend

Noah and I were splashing in muddy puddles yesterday. We had the BEST TIME EVAH

Loving Jeska’s February matchbox challenge

This turns my brain inside out

You remember Jo’s lovely guest post from last year? She’s made a Creative Licence!

[video] Miranda July on creating ‘propelling’ work (also: typeface love)

The Apollo 11 rocket made out of Lego

[video] the art of pesto (and want to try this: how to almond milk)

Need to get one of these gratitude journals before they’re gone!

Predictions of what 2011 would be like by a newspaper in 1911

[video] How to deal with copycats from Marie Forleo

There’s always something cool to find at Convoy

Hanging out for the new 3191

And finally, Guerilla gardening with the Pothole Gardener

Enjoy! xo

Remembering what supports us

I felt really bruised this morning. A combination of bad dreams, snippets of memories that caught me off guard, the pressure of all I have to get done and just the general heaviness of grey January weather. It tooks me ages to get myself together. I had a to do list that wasn’t going to do itself but my mind was all over the place. Working at home is really great until you hit a day like this — unfocussed, over-emotional, racing heart, can’t settle, and no one is there to tell you to pull yourself together and just get on with it. No colleagues to moan to, no clients to put on a facade for. Just boring old me.

So I pulled on some going-outside clothes (as opposed to my usual working-from-home clothes which look remarkably like about-to-go-to-bed clothes), grabbed my notebooks and pens and forcibly shoved myself out into the world. It’s a ten-minute walk to my favourite cafe and I walked fast, the cold air trying to get inside my coat. There weren’t many people about and even the cafe was quiet. And that was perfect for me. I took over a table, spread out my tools and ordered a decaf mocha.

Somewhere between my first sip and leaving the cafe an hour later, I found my calm. With no internet (or laptop, for that matter) I was forced to do my brainstorming on paper. And as it always does, my energy shifted and brought some new clarity with it. You would have thought, after all these years of self-employment in one form or another, I would remember the tricks that get me back in the game. Going for a walk outside is the most obvious and basic, yet it’s the one I find so hard to do. “I don’t have time” falls from my lips as i stare into my monitor, hoping the words will arrange themselves. I don’t have kids to collect from school, or even a dog to walk, so I have no pressing reason to get up from my desk. Yet this one small activity — and a mocha in a cafe is hardly torture, is it? Sometimes i want to slap myself — made everything better. I let go of the bad dreams. The memories receded back into their hidely hole and grey sky didn’t look so bad once I was standing under it.

And the best thing? I managed to work through a block I’d had in the structure of my new course, and realised that it needs to be SIX weeks and not five. :)

Restart. Reset. Reboot. Works like a charm.


How to make dreams come true

Is there anything better than a brand new notebook? I love the smell of the blank paper, the feel of the cover in my hand, the promise of all the ideas I’m going to catch and keep. Whenever I start a new project I like to treat myself to a new notebook (any excuse!) as a way to mark the beginning — I did this with my book and now have a battered Moleskine full of all the threads I wove together.

I use an A5 Filofax (an ochre Malden, for all you Filofanatics out there) for all my business notes as I like the flexibility the loose pages and dividers give me. I’ve tried using online calenders and note-catchers, but nothing beats paper and pen for fast notes and brainstorming — it just suits my brain better.

So it was at the end of last year when it occured to be me that I could use a similar system for my dreaming & scheming. I’ve taken one of Andrea Schroeder’s journalling courses and have always admired her daily journalling, and while I don’t have any painterly talents, i do like to get my crafty on once in a while. So I turned my spare A5 Filofax (aqua Finsbury) into my Creative Dream Journal. And by “creative dream journal” I mean the stuff I want to manifest and make happen. Because to do lists are how I organise my daily tasks, so why not try a to do journal?

It could work, right?

There are currently six sections I’m working with: Life, Love, Business, Home, Abundance and 2012. Rather than be too precious about it, I’m sticking in magazine tearings, using lots of coloured paper and blinging it all out with washi tape and Sharpies. I’ve also recently discovered the joys of blank paper. I always use lined Moleskines for journalling — there’s something about the orderliness of the lines that keeps my scrawly handwriting in check and helps the words flow — but in my CDJ i’m using coloured pens on blank paper and it seems to access a part of my brain that’s been wanting to play for a while. I’ve been yearning for COLOUR! and scribbles! and messy mindmaps!

(I’m sure all you creative journallers out there are nodding your heads, but it took me a while to figure all this out ;)

I work in each section when I have something to add — sometimes that’s daily, sometimes it’s weekly, but either way, having a turquoise binder near me helps to jog my memory. It feels like i’m more actively participating in my dream creation/wish fulfillment/possibility attraction.

The 2012 section has been well-thumbed as i work through my Unravelling workbook and sketch out plans for the new year. Life has a driving instructor’s card taped in as i plan to retake my test this year. Love is filling up with lists and letters. Home holds all the plans for my next move, including the adoption of a kitty.

Business is my space for dreaming up new ways to send my work out into the world. I’ve also been doing the Business Soul Sessions exercises in here and enjoying looking at my biz from different angles (including imagining my biz as a person, above.)

Meanwhile, I’m unpicking my ideas around income, relationships, possibility and the future in the Abundance section. This is curently the least used section of my CDJ — even though I whole-heartedly believe in abundance, I still struggle with it, if that makes sense, so i knew I needed to give it some space. Or perhaps it will be absorbed into the other sections — this is why using a Filofax (or any binder) works so well. It’s a perpetual work in progress that can be added to and edited as the whim takes me. It’s never finished, unlike a bound notebook. There’s something incredibly satisfying about working on all my plans in this way, and being able to reorder pages is helping me reorder my world too.

So there you have it. Operation Make Dreams Happen is a go.

How do you organise your dreaming and scheming?