“Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it
the seed of an equal or greater benefit.”
~ Napoleon Hill
The words resonated with me so much that I transcribed them into my quote journal. Some years later, when I was going through a really rough patch, I remembered that quote, dug it out of my journal and copied it onto a small piece of paper which I carried around in my pocket. For weeks, I repeated it to myself often—because, for me, just saying those words brought me inner relief.
A Zentangle is meant to be a surprise that unfolds before the creator’s eyes, one stroke at a time. Zentangle is one of the few art forms that you intentionally do not plan out. There are no expectations of planned goals of accomplishment to worry about attaining or disappointment stemming from unattainable expectations. There is no plan to follow, there is nothing to detract the stroke being drawn. The lack of planning and the tangles allow the unexpected to occur.
~ Beckah Krahula; One Zentangle a Day
A Meditative Art Form
With the brand New Year in full swing, my partner and I are feeling happy and refreshed from having enjoyed a wonderful holiday season. We planned a quiet, restorative and relaxing holiday and opted not to travel anywhere this year, choosing instead to stay home and enjoy some time together. In the mornings, we slept in and lazed about, reading and relaxing. We cooked together, sipped wine and feasted on simple but delicious food. We laced up our skates and glided around the lagoon at Prince’s Island Park. We took many beautiful walks out in the fresh air and enjoyed the frosted evergreens and snow-covered paths. In the evenings, we snuggled in next to each other to read or watch some of our favourite feel-good movies. We also did something new, something fun I recently discovered, called Zentangling.
“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.”
~ Henry David Thoreau
Playing with Motion Blur
This motion blur study is the direct result of boredom and low light. I took all the shots from our moving vehicle as we cruised across the Canadian prairies on an eight hour long road trip. It was a cold, cloudy December day, the sun was low in the sky and the light was fading, but the landscape was beautiful nonetheless. The subtle beauty of the passing prairie landscape, with its muted winter colour palette, the snow-speckled fields and the starkness of the naked trees, all slowly dissolving into the pastel light of dusk, had me reaching for my camera over and over again.
The Danbo Brothers generally love to spend the whole of their days outdoors. But a recent Arctic cold snap, coupled with an inability (a temporary one, if I know the Danbos) to find suitable winter hats and scarves, has kept them housebound. Yet, to watch them happily while away their time indoors, one would never know they have such a decided preference for being outdoors. Their secret, I believe, is that they always seem to go with the flow—they simply have a knack for finding the silver lining on any clouds that drift their way.
“I believe in pink.
I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner.
I believe in kissing, kissing a lot.
I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong.
I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls.
I believe that tomorrow is another day
and I believe in miracles.”
~ Audrey Hepburn
My Digital Dabblings
I really should have gone to art school. But, for some strange reason, for a very long time, I didn’t know I was an artist at heart—I only knew that I loved to dabble in creative things. I have no formal art training and I don’t draw especially well, but I have always had a strong innate desire to create and express myself in some visual form.
I love short film as an art form. I’m always on the lookout for short films that catch my attention in some way. Here are five shorts, some old, some more current, that I really enjoy for one reason or another. When you get some time, check out the films that interest you. I recommend viewing them in full screen mode—the cinematography is impressive.
(For more about the film genre known as “short film”, the evolution of its increasing availability to the masses and its merits as an art form, see my previous post featuring the first semi-annual madlyinlovewithlife Short Film Festival.)
“There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful,
than a woman being unapologetically herself;
comfortable in her perfect imperfection.
To me, that is the true essence of beauty.”
~ Steve Maraboli
I Dream of Chickens
I love chickens. I think they are beautiful birds. In particular, though, while roosters are undeniably gorgeous, it’s the girls, the hens, I like to spend time woolgathering about. To have my own small flock of girls would be a dream come true. I’ve been infatuated with the idea of keeping a few laying hens for a long time now. But, unlike New York City, Calgary does not allow chickens. So, unless I move away from the city, dreaming about chickens is my only option (and not a bad one either–dreaming about chickens simply makes me happy).