Wednesday 29 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 29

Make time to play it is as essential ingredient in your growth

Reach high, for stars lie hidden in your soul. Dream deep, for every dream precedes the goal....Ralph Vaull Starr

If you abide in Me and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you. John 15:7

Tuesday 28 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 28

Your life is precious, there is no one in this world who can do the exact things you do, in exactly the way you can do it, you are unique.

The worst bankruptcy in the world is the person who has
lost his enthusiasm...H.W. Arnold

No man hath seen God at any time.  If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and His love is perfected in us.. 1 John 4:12

Note: I accidently deleted this so this is a replacement for day 28, the reflection is the same, but the scripture and quote different.

Monday 27 June 2011


Last week came and went very quickly and while I plan my course of action for this week I think its important for us to think about what we achived with our time looking back on the week that was.  I have been getting up very early to not only spend some time praying and talking God but also tapping into my creativity while the house is still and all are sleeping. It's a wonderful time and on some days I can catch the sun in the garden and hear the birds as they fight over the fat balls and sunflower seeds left for them.

At the beginning of last the week with all the rain brought in the spiders, this one I promise you was massive, and seem to have a weird shaped body!

They seem to gravitate over my creative space in the corner of my kitchen....was this the unexpected I that was coming my way..... a small part, I realised I no longer scream as loud when I see these spiders anymore!

I also managed to visit a garden centre near my mothers in North London,

It is deceptive in size, and houses some beautiful plants, it has a lovely feel and at the back it has a mini pond with fish and water loving plants, it's an oasis and the staff are lovely!

On the way home were the guys prunning the trees back, not sure why they do it in June but I guess they grow quite fast and will be springing back come September.

Or perhaps they forgot to do it in spring and trying to catch up with themselves, I do love trees their welcomed shade in the scorching sun, and hearing the rustling of the leaves in the cool breeze..... What areas of your life still need pruning in order to make room for new growth?

Went on my usual walk, did 2 laps which is 1.54 miles, taking it steady, and increase my efforts this week to 3.08 miles.  They have finally placed the boarders with flowers and they are looking really pretty, as they establish and grow out a bit they will start to fill out the spaces.

Still not eating wheat, feeling so much better, though my son still loves pancakes - the American style ones,  so made a batch one morning.

In trying to get more organised, there are many things that have to change and some things that have to go altogether.  I am trying to look at everything with fresh eyes and ask myself, 'do I really need this or can it go to a better home'?.  What usually comes back is 'ooh you can make something really neat with that, or that would look good in assemblage art', and now everything has potential in being used in mixed media art in some form.  As much as I love trying new things there has to be a limit and you have to be tough on yourself, and maybe ask yourself the reasons you are holding on to stuff (unless of course I can get me a studio and all my supplies can go in there!).  This got me thinking about the things that we hold on to that come from pain, that hurt is usually a scar, we can have many different type of scars. 

When I was 6 years old  I use to walk along the wall in the picture, minus the hedge.  The wall seemed massive to me and I was proud of myself for conquering it -  when your smaller things look bigger. One day I was happilly walking on it as usual and I fell and cut my shin on my left leg in two places.  I cried, felt angry and slightly scared that it would happen everytime I walked on the wall.  The wound on my leg healed, but the scar to this day, over 30 years later still remains.

There are so many experiences that we have as children that we carry as constant reminders, something someone said, or an incident and they can often be carried into adult life and impact how we view the world.  

The experience on the wall didn't stop me from climbing on walls and I never went round with the attitude that all walls are bad, but it did remind me that sometimes we hold on to the emotion of the experience and the way the 6 year old Amanda dealt with it then is very different to the way the adult Amanda needs to deal with situations, it is no longer a huge wall anymore, it is the little wall it is now, holding no power over my future decisions. 

Think about the things that you have been holding on to from way back, that impact on your today, think about the lesson that you can learn and what you can decide to let go of and finally and clear out.

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 27

It’s time for change, step into the new life that is waiting, let go of the old habits and confining behaviours, it’s your time

I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain... Frank Herbert

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God...Ephesians 2:8

Sunday 26 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 26

Listen, can you hear your soul singing

Works of art are landscapes of the mind. ---Ted Godwin

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you  Matthew 6:33

Saturday 25 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 25

You always have a choice

All art, whether it pleases us or not, helps to add colour, excitement, joy, or sadness and, most often, a sense of awe to our life’s experience. ---Henry O. Dorman

The righteous cry and the Lord hears,
and delivers them out of all their troubles..Psalm 34:17

Friday 24 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 24

You are where you need to be at this very moment in time

Each day comes bearing its gifts.  Untie the ribbons.....Ann Schabacker

For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart... Hebrews 4:12

Thursday 23 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 23

Start celebrating your new life right now!


Insist on yourself; never imitate. Your own gift you can present every moment with the cumulative force of a whole life’s cultivation; but of the adopted talent of another you have only an extemporaneous half possession. Do that which is assigned to you, and you cannot hope too much or dare too much... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Heaven and earth shall pass away; but My words shall not pass away...Mark 13:31

Wednesday 22 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 22

I am willing to create

Let every man or woman hear, if you never hear me again, remember this, that if you wish to be great at all, you must begin where you are and with what you are. He who would be great anywhere must first be great in his own Philadelphia...Russel H. Conwell

Cast your burden upon the Lord, and He will sustain you: He will never allow the righeous to be shaken ..Psalm 55:22

Sunday 19 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 19

Celebrate the new life you will be starting today

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful
beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us. We ask ourselves, “Who
am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?”
Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn’t serve
the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel
insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we
unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
---Marianne Williamson

Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry and He will say 'Here I am'
Isaiah 58:9

Saturday 18 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 18

We all need somebody to lean on

Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark,
in the hopeless swamps of the approximate, the not-quite, the not-yet,
the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish, in lonely frustration
for the life you deserved, but have never been able to reach. Check your
road and the nature of your battle. The world you desired can be won.
It exists, it is real, it is possible, it is yours. ---Ayn Rand

We all know that God causes all things to work together
for good to those who love God, to those who are
called according to His purpose...Romans 8:28

Friday 17 June 2011

Friday Feeling - Expect the Unexpected

My motto for next week is - Expect the Unexpected!  I took a moment out to reflect on the week,  quite a few things happened and it's funny that once you start writing about it you realise how much you actually got done.  I was able to take some much needed time out today do some writing, stopped for a cappuccino and this is what I got a giant cup that you had to hold with both hands.... Massimo! 

I saw an unexpected sight around 40 horses being led trotting though a street in Hampstead, we had to pull our cars over and by the time I realised what was happening, thought to myself this would make a great picture and got out my camera, they were passing me and I only caught the backside of them.

This is the third week that I have been posting the 365 days of colour (here is an extra one for you today). Some of my assumptions I had about the project were proved wrong, but it is interesting how we can allow negative thoughts to sway our decisions and our creative outputs.
After the first week I had some doubts about what I thought I was doing....  I had few responses to what I was posting and I felt the doubt creeping in - that perhaps I should have made it something else, thoughts raced through my mind....(challenges usually involved other people and if no one was commenting, no one was interested).  As the week went on I started to get a few responses from fellow bloggers, it was a blessing to read their comments of encouragement. 

I had momentarily loss sight of the real reason I started and it was to share my love for colour and flowers, and some of the wonderful quotes and scriptures that have blessed me, if other people commented that was an added blessing.  It was supposed to be about giving and the knowledge that in 365 days someone somewhere around the world will have been touched by an image they have seen or a quote/scripture they have read.  The added benefits are that there will be growth, just as in the many challenges we take part in we hope that part of us takes some learning from it.  I can definitely say that the challenges I have done so far have made an impact on my work and  I look forward to seeing how this personal challenge will impact on me, if only one person is blessed it's worth it.  I will create a badge and your welcome to add it to your site and start sharing some of your flower photographs and if you want to share your favorite quotes and scriptures please do.

I also gave a talk on my experience as a carer to a group doing their MA in social work.  I was also able to show some of the creative tools I use in my work and how simple things like a journal made from recycled materials can enable a carer to start expressing their experience and impact on their health and well-being.

If you are interested in further information about art and health I manage a Arts in Health NHS network of resource information and regularly update it with information and events that I come across that relates to this area.

Alan's book launch was a success, It is his second book called EKidz in Cyberspace, published and available from Tate Publishing and Amazon

There were lots of interesting questions asked about the process of writing the book.  The message of Internet safety for young people is an important one that Alan tackles.  I will be interviewing him to find out about his motivation and passion for writing and hopefully have a competition to win a copy of his book, in the meantime check out his website

Sekani, our son played piano with a friend called Steve Green a very talented musician but who also designs bespoke jewellery and this is just a small fraction of his talent.  He will be working on his website and you'll be able to see some of his work soon. 
We're hoping that Sekani will finish the rest of his songs and make an album here is a snippet of Sekani and Steve playing while there was a refreshment break, (please forgive the zooming in and out and the shaking by yours truly, it gets better half way through)!

My mother enjoyed the event, there were lots of helpful young men who kept mum occupied while I took some of the photographs, this is us on the way back home, Alan is driving!

Sekani  finished his exams this week (Yay), he's been doing his GCSEs, like a lot of young people at the moment.  It has been quite a stressful month now we just wait for the exam results - he will be 16 years old this year (doesn't time fly, I still keep thinking back to when he was a cute, hold your hand and smother you with kisses and hugs little boy (he was 3 in this picture and I used to wear my hair short then..... am I getting old!))

This was taken in Barbados

Managed to get a couple of walks in, another one of our local parks which is lovely, there are so many other walkers and joggers, I managed to do 1.4 miles - 2 laps, which I will increase next week... small steps to a fitter me!.

 I did the outer route

In closing, as I  reflect on the week I have a strong desire to get things finished, a few things in the air and there needs to be closure in order to move on to the next experience, opportunity and adventure.  Perhaps it's time to have a clear out... you never know when something totally unexpected will happen.  Stay blessed!

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 17

I have not yet reached my destination....

We shall find peace. We shall hear angels.
We shall see the sky sparkling with diamonds....Anton Chekhov

I can do all things through Him who strengthens me
Philippians 4:13

Thursday 16 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 16

As I listen to my creativity I am lead to God
Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile
can be the source of your joy. ---Thich Nhat Hanh

Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do.... John 14:13

Wednesday 15 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 15

Through the use of a few simple tools, my creativity will flourish
Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy;
they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom....Marcel Proust

He who sows sparingly shall also reap sparingly, and he who sows
bountifully shall also reap bountifully...11 Corinthians 9:6

Monday 13 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 13

My creativity heals myself and others
Use your health even to the point of wearing it out. That is what it is for
George Bernard Shaw

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil:
for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me
Psalm 23:4

Sunday 12 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 12

My creativity always leads me to truth and love
Come to the edge. We can’t, we’re afraid.
Come to the edge. We can’t. We’ll fall!
Come to the edge. And they came.
And he pushed them. And they flew.
Guillaume Apollinaire

The Lord will guard your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forever...Psalm 121:8

Saturday 11 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 11

Think about a family member you could honor

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. ---Mark Twain

...we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us...Romans 8:37

Friday 10 June 2011

Friday Feeling...

I have been thinking back over the past few weeks at what I've managed to do creatively, I seem to be in that in-between stage of deciding what the direction should be for a number of things....  I'm sure as I dwell and reflect and pray the answers will come.

I have continued to sketch and journal, as doing something every day is essential to your health and wellbeing! I met up with a friend and we spent a couple of hours painting, it was great to work in the same room as someone else as I usually work on my own.  We are going to try and make this a regular feature to our week.....

I spent a lot of time at the computer connecting with other artists, there is always something interesting to see creatively online by all the talented artists out there.  This week I was inspired by Karenika, she seems to fit an amazing amount of creativity into her day - very inspiring!

Drove up to Bedford to the The Birds of Prey Centre with Alan and Sekani (I had given them a flying and handling experience for Christmas)  It was lovely to get out of London for a few hours and see some of those beautiful birds.

I managed to miss the deadline for the sketchbook challenge on my Art blog, but I will still write up what I did for the post, and then start this months suggestion.  I have also been preparing for a series of talks for Social Workers which look at the experience of the carer.  Whillst my mother continues to deteriorate with the dementia, she is holding on to her humour, laughter and zest for life!  To help me cope with the role I developed a memory book and other tools which look at different aspects of her life and means that whatever setting she is in others are able to interact and  help her talk about her memories and things that she has done with the family over the years.  I am still putting them together and will be sharing these over the next few weeks.

The 365 days of colour that you have been seeing posted is primarily to enable me to share the images of some of the wonderful flowers I had photographed that I see on my travels or plant in the garden, I also come across a number of quotes and scriptures that inspire me, I hope they do the same for you. Honeysuckle and Jasmine are two of my favorite plants and I finally got round to buying a couple, they are steadily establishing themselves in the garden. 

I also managed to get out the last of the seeds that I had in my collection which will hopefully produce some pretty flowers mid August/September.

With the wet weather we have been having it has brought an increase in the slugs and snail population, these ones here are the prettiest in the garden, making acquaintances!

and the spiders seem to be trying to find refuge in the house!

....this one was massive (honest).... the picture doesn't do it justice!

As I have also been trying to get more exercise, I started walking again with a group of women once a week, it helped me motivate myself knowing that there were going to be others taking part, and that this time was just for me! I managed to do 6 laps round the field, and planning to increase the amount each week:) This morning I went to my local park and walked 1.4 miles!  It's been a fine morning and it's amazing how many other people young and old were doing exactly the same thing (some were moving quite bit faster than I was and these were the elderly ones!)

Tomorrow, Saturday 11th June  is the launch of Alan's book eKidz in Cyberspace, The address is EEC Centre, 9 - 23 Marsham Street, Westminster, WC1P 3DW UK if your anywhere near your most welcome to come along.  It starts at 6.30pm until 9.30pm.  There will be refeshments served at the start of the event.

Finally, I have been messing around with photoshop and have managed to teach myself some new techniques.  I wanted to be able to incorporate some of my photographs with my art work, and I am getting the hang of things.  I've got Susan Tuttles book which is handy as the techniques use photoshop elements.  I am quite pleased with my attempt, and know that with practice I will get better at using all the functions.  Hope you have a blessed weekend, and looking forward to seeing and hearing what you will be getting upto for next week!

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 10

I am allowed to nurture my artist
A man travelling across a field encountered a tiger. He fled, the tiger after him. Coming to a precipice, he caught hold of the root of a wild vine and swung himself over the edge. The tiger sniffed at him from above. Trembling, the man looked down to where, far below, another tiger was waiting to eat him. Only the vine sustained him. Two mice, one white and one black, little by little started to gnaw away the vine. The man then saw a luscious strawberry near him. Grasping the vine with one hand, he plucked the strawberry with the other. How sweet it tasted. ---Zen poem
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy...Matthew 5:7

Thursday 9 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 9

I am willing to use my creative talents
Happiness is to take up the struggle in the midst of the raging storm,
and not to pluck the lute in the moonlight or recite poetry
among the blossoms......Ding Ling, Chinese Author
The steps of a man are establised by the Lord; and he delights in his way
..Psalm 37:23

Wednesday 8 June 2011

365 Days of Colour - Flower of the Day 8

Be in charge of your words and your deeds

Dreaming permits each and every one of us to be quietly and safely insane
every night of our lives.....Charles William Dement

He makes the whole body fit together perfectly.  As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthly and growing and full of love...Ephesians 4:16
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