Being (and Loving) Yourself

When I’m planning, I write blog topics for the week on my calendar, often scheduling the whole month at once. Sometimes those topics will be crossed out or directed with arrows to other weeks. Because inspiration supersedes planning, sometimes a post will bounce from week to week to week before I finally get around to it and then sometimes by the time I sit down to write the post, I can’t entirely remember what I wanted to say.

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I Made Shoes!

Last week I shared my fears around hand sewing and how my belief that I wasn’t “good” at stitching kept me from trying embroidery. I’m not sure if it was that belief, or if was other fears that kept me from using the espadrille kit I bought at the end of August.

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The Lies We Tell Ourself and How to Break Free From Self-Imposed Limitations

Are there things you wish you could do, but “know” you can’t because you don’t have the talent?

Around ten or twelve years ago, before I got the rose tattoo on my ankle I studied images of roses and planned out a design. I even made a sketch and brought it and lots of photographs with me to my appointment. I clearly remember telling the tattoo artist “I want something like this sketch, but I can’t draw”.

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Plan Your Year and Move from Dreaming to Doing

Somehow January has come and now is almost gone. Are you feeling on top of your goals or is overwhelm starting to settle in?

The other day I realized that although I had ideas for what I wanted to do in the coming year I hadn’t sat down to plan anything.

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What You Do Matters and Thoughts on Diversity and Healing the World with Beauty

I’ve had a lot of thoughts swirling around in my head this week. I’m going to try untangling them here, though perhaps they might get messier in the process. I’d love for you to jump in with your thoughts, too.

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An Invitation to the 5th Handmade Joy Exchange

The Exchange is now closed. Thank you to everyone who has joined in! Stay tuned to hear about what everyone creates!

In 2012 I organized the first Handmade Joy Exchange. People from 4 countries and 6 US states participated. Since then I’ve hosted three more exchanges, the most recent in 2017.

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Happy Solstice

Happy Winter Solstice to you.

It’s the longest night of the year and the official beginning of winter (though around here it’s been feeling like winter for a few months now).

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Stealing Calm Amidst the Chaos

This has been a chaotic week. Or maybe I should say, my studio is in chaos. I’ve been filming my next Skillshare class and somehow my studio always ends up looking like a small tornado has passed through when I’m filming. Having my sewing table and ironing board set up in the room hasn’t helped matters.

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Making Do and Making Art

What are your barriers to creativity? What keeps you from making or doing on a regular basis? A lack of:

  • time?

  • space?

  • money?

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On Dreaming Big

When I first started writing a blog and named it My Giant Strawberry one of the things that appealed to me about that name was how it spoke of my big dreams. Back then I had a lot of dreams, but I never imagined I would begin painting or that painting would become a main focus for me.

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The Answer to Slowing Down? Gratitude

How is possible that Thanksgiving has already come and gone? If you celebrated it, I hope it was peaceful, joyful and filled with love.

It seems I’m always pondering how fast time is flying by and how I’m not able to keep up with it. Am I the only one? Do you feel this way, too?

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Any Step Will Do -- How to Move Forward with Your Creative Journey

For a while now I’ve been in a weird place in my art journey. Knowing that I need to change, or am on the cusp of change, but not knowing how to do it or what that change is supposed to look like. I know I mentioned it last month.

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Successes, Failures and Celebrating Where We Are

This morning there is a blanket of snow over everything. When I checked the thermometer it said 23. And yet I have more energy and feel more inspired today than I have for a long time because the SUN is shining.

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Being in the Middle

When I sit down to write to you it’s usually with a plan that I’ve been thinking about for a while. I usually start writing about a week before I’m planning on posting. I have lists of topics. I have a schedule. But sometimes things don’t go as planned.

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The End of the Season in the Garden -- Reviewing and Planning for Next Year

We’ve been having cold nights for a while now. We’ve even had snow. Except for a few hardy growers, my garden is finished for the year.

At the end of the season (and in truth, even during the season) I’m looking forward to next year’s garden.

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Learning to Slow Down

Lately I feel as if I’m always in a hurry. As if the days are hurtling by and I can barely keep up. I’ve been feeling like this for a while and I don’t like it. One of the reasons we moved out of the city was to live a slower life, but here I am rushing, again.

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Allowing The Change (And New Calendars)

I’ve been thinking a lot about change lately. In part with the changing of the seasons as I wrote last week, but also because change seems to be all around.

Isn’t it always?

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Honoring Seasons, Transitions and Change

Last week the weather shifted dramatically from summer to full-on autumn. Suddenly the days were cold. Dark. Wet. I layered on sweaters and hats and scarves. We turned on the furnace and brewed pot after pot of hot tea.

I felt lethargic, melancholy. It was hard to get out of bed in the morning. I made soup and baked bread. I wrote Joy Lists. But nothing seemed to help. I was uninspired and discouraged in my art, too. All I wanted to do was snuggle beneath my quilts and crocheted blankets to wait for the sun to come out again.

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