More and more we are being told to slow down, to mediate, to focus on the present moment. Even my website platform is sending me emails about being Mindful in business. As someone who has always known the benefits of relaxing and calming the mind, this is not new to me, but is it suddenly new to everyone else? Is the world catching up? I have my mediation music playing on the PC, I am surrounded by brightly coloured throws and tapestries, my incense and candles are burning, even my artwork is transforming from being that of a straight laced copy artist to adding bright colours and I am now open adding fantastical interpretations of the natural world around me.
Mindfulness this the art of experiencing life truly in the present moment, being total focused on the task, person of thing that is in front of you, without being distracted by thoughts, images or memories that take your mind elsewhere. In this instant I am mindful, focusing on the words as they flow from my mind, to my fingers, then on to this virtual page in front to me. I see only this screen and hear only the words I wish to see appear on the screen in my mind. My studio is not the thriving hub of activity, that I'd imagined it to be, but rather a tranquil pool where the occasional wandering soul comes by to bathe their feet in to the refreshing waters of my Zen Like Palace.
Although, physically it doesn't look much like a palace, I can feel its energy changing, I will have my running water, fish, hanging plants, twinkling lights, and floor to ceiling artwork on the walls....
This week has been a busy one, I had a birthday, our Demi Pair arrived, Julia went to long daycare for the first time, I had a doctors appointment and I completed an A2 portrait in 5 days!
Having our Demi Pair has meant that all those small housework jobs that never got done, are finally being done as she is taking care of the main ones, and the kids are no longer under my feet when I am preparing meals etc. It'll take a little while to get used to someone else in the house but so far it has been good, and tonight my husband and I finally get to have our first proper date night in over two years!
The doctors appointment was good too, as I think I have finally found a Doctor that actually cares about me as a person! I am more than just a number to her and she has really put some thought into treating my injury that has plagued me for over a decade. I have been given new stretches to do and have a referral to a Sports Medicine Clinic. Fingers crossed! All I can say, is thank goodness I am left handed, because if this was my dominant arm that felt this way, I'd never be able to put pencil to paper. So, I am diligently doing my stretches daily and massaging my shoulder muscles whenever I get a chance while I wait for my appointment, next month.
My art style too has been stretched; this week as I was requested to do a portrait in crazy colours of my choosing. It took me a while to settle on which colours to use, but I came up with turquoise, purple and pink! My favourite Bohemian colours! I am really please with how the portrait turned out and the clinic sent me a glowing review. Lets hope the recipients feel the same way! I can now do pop art, should you require a portrait that is a little funkier than normal, then I am open to anything. Challenge Accepted!!
Long day care was a welcome change for both Julia and I. I finished my portrait ahead of schedule and she spent the whole day playing and making a mess that someone else had to clean up! She was so tired she could barely stay awake when she got home, and was a little clingy to me the next day, but I think she'll soon settle in, and this give me the break I need to concentrate on growing the business and also gives me a day when I can book in clients and know that I won't be distracted by my very demanding child.
Getting older.... how to put that on a positive spin,,,, At least there is hope for me now, through the CFS Recovery program I can see myself in a future where I am better and able to do all the things I have dreamed about. Before, I saw only more pain, and more exhaustion as the years went on. I have hope again, where I thought it was lost. Baby steps, if we can fix my shoulder, I should get more sleep, then more energy will naturally follow and where there is more energy, there is always room for a little more improvement... a little at a time, not to much, not too little....slow and steady, just like everything in life...
So, the moral of today's story is to - Keep Stretching! Whether it be your body or your skill set, never put yourself into a box that is too small, never stop reaching for that top shelf, no matter how high it is, or how far our of your comfort zone it is, you might just surprise yourself by what you can achieve if you never stop striving for what you want in this life.
There is more to life than chasing the illusion that money will bring you happiness and freedom, it doesn't! Happiness and Freedom come from within, having wealth is an outward reflection of your inner state of being. My inner being needs a lot of elbow grease in order to shine.
So yesterday evening, my IT Super Genius DH decided it was time for me to upgrade from Google Ads Express to Google Adwords, So for the Artist and Day Dreamer that I am, I have spent the day trying to wrap my head around the complicated foreign language that is Google Adwords. My little two line Ads have disappeared from the top page of Google and the only way to get them to appear back there again was to bid 65 Cents per click! That was the cheapest and I could only allocate one search term! If I managed to hang on there at all I can see that my budget will be burned through very quickly indeed. Surely, there is a better way?! Answers on a postcard!!
This is a black cockatoo. They are pretty common around my home, but are a little more illusive than their white counterparts, the Sulfur Crested Cockatoos. As you can see, they are not really black, but iridescent, like oil in a puddle. They sound a lot different too. They have a shrill cry, more song like than the terrifying pterodactyl squawk produced by the Sulfurs. I took the photograph I worked from for this portrait at Melbourne Zoo as I have not been fortunate enough to capture one of our local inhabitants up close, as yet! They travel in small groups, and you usually see them flying over head in formation. I have been hearing them in the garden, early in the morning the last few days, but with an acre of land, containing hundreds of trees, it is hard to pinpoint their exact location, but it is nice to hear a few new voices from time to time.
Hi, my name is Chrystal Carter, I am a mother to three lovely girls. I emigrated with my husband to Australia in December 2014, and have been living the dream, ever since! We are settled in the Dandenong Ranges and I have recently set up my brand new home art studio , in the heart of the hills, Tecoma. Here, I can follow my life long dream of being an artist drawing another of my greatest passions, animals, in particular, peoples beloved pets. I have always been fascinated by animals, nature and wildlife and where better to pursue my passions than here in Australia, and it certainly hasn't disappointed me! Follow me as a take on this new venture and brave new world, together with my wonderful family, and not forgetting my furry companions, Vin the Cat and Juno the Dog!