This monday morning I am feeling so much renewal happening.  Saturday I found myself stirring around early on in the day, not knowing which direction to go.  I felt the urge to paint, and nearly talked myself out of it.  This resistance I have been feeling lately.  Its been welllll over a year since Ive picked up a brush.  In all honesty, its probably been 2 or 3 years.  I finally fought through my resistance and grabbed all of my art supplies that have been hiding in boxes in the corners of my home.  I brought them all outside to the picnic table, along with some feathers and sage for inspiration.  I sat staring at the canvas for a while before I decided to just paint the feathers and sage.  I painted the whole canvas with lots of color.  Got frustrated, walked away, read my book in the hammock for a while, then came back to it, and painted cream all over the color.  I did this back and forth throughout the rest of the day.  But each time I came back with fresh eyes and it just flowed.  You can see from this pic, but in golden ink it says 'Cleanse my Heart to Soar my Soul'.  It felt like the title to the soul work Im doing right now.  I have some pretty heavy stuff in my heart that Im working on, and this felt like the beginning of the release.  Im so glad I gave myself this day.  (I thought I was going to be doing other things that day, so it felt good to embrace my saturday like a day off instead of just working through it).

I began re-reading a borrowed book from forever ago.  I kept putting it down before, and I realize now that it was all in due time.  Now is the time for me to read it.  I also started re-reading A New Earth.  So between all of these yummy thoughtful words, and allowing myself to open up in old artistic ways, I felt a softening in my heart, and the beginning of a release that is so very needed.  An active one, instead of a passive one.  (I also started playing with Hipstomatics new app for multiple exposures, so so fun!)

Then on sunday, our yoga meet turned into a morning brunch and riverside walk that was so much better!  My two girlfriends came and picked me up, and we all went and got some local coffee and then drove out to Tarpley for brunch at Mac N Ernies.  So so yummy.  It went from a hot sunny day the day before to feeling like winter outside saturday morning.  We all were bundled up from head to toe.  Then we went to my friend's new casa she is going to be fixing up, and took a 2 mile stroll along her riverside.  It was magical.  It didnt even feel like we were in Texas anymore.  It felt like we were in a different, more magic, spirit filled land.  We walked, and talked, and gathered treasures, and shared stories, and had moments of beautiful silence.  I found 'my rock'.  The first one I picked up.  And it's ironic to me that it is red.  I found so much meaning in such little things along the way.  I had also never felt so at home.  My ladies of the canyon (as robin so sweetly called us this morning).  Rock licking and synchronicity.  It was there.

Im left with a huge soulsigh.  Im wildly excited that these girls will be joining Katelyn and I in a few weeks to create an amazing new lookbook for The Bohemian Collective.  It will be a creative tribe for sure! 

post signature

Guest Post - Serene Places from Bubby & Bean >>>

Hello all you beautiful Violet Bella/Roots & Feathers readers!  This is Melissa from Bubby and Bean filling in for my sweet friend Laura while she focuses on her Nanna and family.  Today I'm going to share with you guys some of my favorite places in the world to relax, meditate, and recharge.  Some of these are places I frequent, and others are places I've only been to one time.  Some are spots where I've sat for just a few minutes, and others are places I've visited for days.  But all of these spaces have, in some way, brought me a sense of peace, and enabled me to clear my head of life's everyday chaos. 

I don't have a yard, but that didn't stop us from creating our very own garden last summer, and I can't wait to do it again.  We planted herbs, veggies and flowers in containers and filled our balcony with them.  Sitting quietly among all of the green is one of my favorite ways to relax. 

This particular spot was likely a once-in-a-lifetime for me, but I think about it all the time.  In 2010, I took a trip to Australia with my husband's band.  Everywhere we visited was incredibly beautiful, but one particular beach - Lennox Head in New South Wales - was one of the most serene places I've ever been.  The waves were huge and produced such a calming sound that I fell asleep both days that we were there.  It was really magical. 

There is probably no place in world that has provided me with more peaceful moments than the Tibetan Buddhist Center (now the Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center) in Bloomington, Indiana.  In fact, I lived on the grounds of the center for several years, and would take almost daily breaks to walk around the Stupa or sit and meditate.  I haven't been back in a long time, but I still visual some of my favorite moments there when I'm in need of a little mental relaxation. 

When I lived in Southern Oregon, I would make the quick 25 minute journey down to the redwoods at least twice a week.  There is something so majestic and powerful about these awesome examples of nature, and I would feel instantly nurtured.  All of the moss and massive ferns reminded me of how beautiful life really is, and I would always leave feeling healed from whatever bothered me.  I really miss living so close to such an incredible place! 

I have found that no matter where I am or how stressed I'm feeling, a quick trip to a bookstore can provide instant tranquility.  There's something about being surrounded with books in a (mostly) quiet environment that makes trouble melt away.  I like to grab a soy latte and spend a half hour or so looking through books and magazines that have nothing to do with work.  When I try to step away from work by using the internet (as amazing as it is), I tend to either feel bombarded with information or I end up sneaking back to a work project.  Going to a bookstore gives me just the physical separation I need from work and allows me to spend some time in a calming space.  (image via bookshelf porn) Life can be pretty overwhelming sometimes, and it's easy to get so wrapped up that we overlook the importance of taking time for ourselves away from the madness.  Whenever things start to feel too crazy for me, I try to go to a space that I know will feel calm and peaceful.  Sometimes, I'll even just sit in a quiet room and visualize some of the favorite places I outlined here.  The next time you feel like things are just a little too intense, try finding a special space where you can ease your mind for a few minutes, or reflect on a place you've been that was especially serene.  This small action can make a big difference, and leave you feeling refreshed and recharged.  Do you have any particular places or spaces where you go to decompress? 

 xo, melissa  

Sacred Space >>>

Ahhhhh..... *big sigh - wishing i was in my yoga class now saying...'ahhhhh' with the classroom*  As you know this past week has been an interesting one, along with being completely full of responsibilities, I have felt like their was not much room to breathe.  I realized last night I had not even read in my books all week, I had not been able to really participate in my Soulodge journey, or even do anything physical, like hoop or dance.  This morning marks my first real 'ahhhhh' moment.  That moment you feel you can finally exhale.  Last night before I was about to crawl into bed, I saw my little desk next to my bed, in complete disarray, full of strewn out books, tissues, empty water cups... so unattended.  I realized what I needed to do was to get my little space back to feeling sacred.  I grabbed several little trinkets that have special meaning to me from around the house and created a loving, inviting space for me to bath in before I go to bed each night. 

I feel like I need to go outside and shake myself off like a wet dog does, ha ha.  Fling off this past week and let it dissipate into the air.  It is time for me and nature to have a little oneness.  Clear my head a bit and welcome back in the great spirits of the north. 


This is how we spend our mornings now...

taking in the sunrise on the porch with our coffee, IN MY ROBE!  something i could never do in town.  such a refreshing change of pace.  before i would wake up in my dark little house, make my coffee and go straight to emails.  not anymore!  and now that Bella can go outside anytime she wants... me, violet & bella all get to hang out together in peace.

Im slowly fixing up the outside.  james parents were so sweet to bring us two hanging baskets of the prettiest flowers.  i took some really lovely photos of them the other day.  and we brought over all of our gardening pots and accessories.  although it wont be until next season that i can garden.  but its comforting to have all of my momma's things on my porch.

and yep, thats me first thing in the morning!  and dont you just love the way the sunlight comes through the trees?

how do you spend your mornings?  do you give yourself time or do you jump right into the day?

Today we have friends visiting morning and night!  Shall be a good sunday.  And then tomorrow we are going to Ikea!!!  Oh my Im excited!