Monday Mood Board #14

Christmas is coming….just sayin

Sharon Stone in Casino

Gotta love Ginger! She did self-care the old fashioned way.

 

 

 

 

Self-care: take this!

I always thought of self care as more than mud masks and bubble baths.

contributed image – thecord.ca

It really is a total package encompassing mind/body/spirit + other life essentials.  So when I saw this article from another website it was only fitting to share it with you.  Because life is simple and complicated at the same time.  We need to focus on what needs to be fixed on the outside in order to feel good on the inside.  I’m not the only one who thinks this way.

Self-care is often a very unbeautiful thing – by Brianna Wiest: thoughtcatalog.com

It is making a spreadsheet of your debt and enforcing a morning routine and cooking yourself healthy meals and no longer just running from your problems and calling the distraction a solution.

It is often doing the ugliest thing you have to do, like sweat through another workout or tell a toxic friend you don’t want to see them anymore or get a second job so you can have a savings account or figure out a way to accept yourself so that you’re not constantly exhausted from trying to be everything, all the time and then needing to take deliberate, mandated breaks from living to do basic things like drop some oil into a bath and read Marie Claire and turn your phone off for the day.

A world in which self-care has to be such a trendy topic is a world that is sick. Self-care should not be something we resort to because we are so absolutely exhausted that we need some reprieve from our own relentless internal pressure.

True self-care is not salt baths and chocolate cake, it is making the choice to build a life you don’t need to regularly escape from.

And that often takes doing the thing you least want to do.

It often means looking your failures and disappointments square in the eye and re-strategizing. It is not satiating your immediate desires. It is letting go. It is choosing new. It is disappointing some people. It is making sacrifices for others. It is living a way that other people won’t, so maybe you can live in a way that other people can’t.

It is letting yourself be normal. Regular. Unexceptional. It is sometimes having a dirty kitchen and deciding your ultimate goal in life isn’t going to be having abs and keeping up with your fake friends.  It is deciding how much of your anxiety comes from not actualizing your latent potential, and how much comes from the way you were being trained to think before you even knew what was happening.

The act of self-care has become yet another thing women are expected to be good at. Did you use the right filter for that ‘gram of your impeccably prepared acai bowl? Are the candles you just lit in your Snap story made from organic hand-poured soy or are they that mass-produced factory shit? And how can we stem the inevitable capitalist tide from turning something as simple as self-care into yet another thing to be bought and sold? These are all things I wrestle with as I order Dominos in sweatpants under the guise of ‘being good to myself.’ –  Amil Niazi

If you find yourself having to regularly indulge in consumer self-care, it’s because you are disconnected from actual self-care, which has very little to do with “treating yourself” and a whole lot do with parenting yourself and making choices for your long-term wellness.

It is no longer using your hectic and unreasonable life as justification for self-sabotage in the form of liquor and procrastination. It is learning how to stop trying to “fix yourself” and start trying to take care of yourself… and maybe finding that taking care lovingly attends to a lot of problems you were trying to fix in the first place.

It means being the hero of your life, not the victim. It means rewiring what you have until your everyday life isn’t something you need therapy to recover from. It is no longer choosing a life that looks good over a life that feels good. It is giving the hell up on some goals so you can care about others. It is being honest even if that means you aren’t universally liked. It is meeting your own needs so you aren’t anxious and dependent on other people.

It is becoming the person you know you want and are meant to be. Someone who knows that salt baths and chocolate cake are ways to enjoy life – not escape from it.

Well said! Who else agrees?

ART Facts

Words to the Wise

Art is not a pleasure, or an amusement, art is a great matter.  Art is an organ of human life transmitting man’s reasonable perception into feeling. Leo Tolstoy – 1898

Mark Rothko, Four Darks in Red

His (Tolstoy’s) definition of art is in the inverse of the truth; the task of art is to transform not perception into feeling, but feeling into perception.  Sir Herbert Read – 1960.

I found the above phrases transcribed by perfect penmanship into a beautifully gifted art book from a gallery in Washingon, D.C. I hadn’t opened up the hard cover book in a long while and re discovered it again recently as it was tucked away amongst other belongings.

The nice thing about art is that it never gets old.

ART is an appreciated respite from all the craziness in the universe right now.

How do you feel about that? Yup; me too!

 

 

Beauty: Blueberry Exfoliant

Blueberries and Acai berries

are normally reserved for my smoothies, not my face.  But this was a nice alteration.

I’m usually a bit skeptical of “too good to be true” deals but recently on a shopping trip to Washington State I stopped in at Trader Joe’s and found this little beauty. T.J’s Blueberry & Acai facial scrub is surprisingly effective, smells great and the price is right.

Essentially, it’s an antioxidant rich gentle exfoliant that helps to slough off dead skin cells and leave you feeling smooth and pampered. It also contains alpha-hydroxy acids, which is supposed to treat acne and improve the appearance of scars. I quite like it.

What It Claims To Do
Here’s what it says on the Trader Joe’s website: “While this Scrub is exfoliating, save for a few stray blueberry seeds and its very slight general graininess, it’s not really its texture that does the exfoliating—it’s the alpha-hydroxy acids, or AHAs. We also include colloidal oatmeal, shea butter, meadowfoam seed oil, and various plant extracts to soothe and pamper that beautiful mug of yours.”

Beauty Bonus: the break-up

My powder blush broke into a million pieces.  What do I do?

Gather all of the broken pieces of makeup into its original container, and crush the whole thing up (even the parts that may not have broken). 2. Add a few drops of rubbing alcohol to the compact, and let it soak in. Use your finger (pre-wash hands of course), the back of a spoon, or anything, really, to rub and smooth down the makeup. Leave it overnight for best results. Apply.

Your welcome!

 

 

Style: the Jumpsuit

I’m not even sure the words style and jumpsuit belong in the same sentence, but here we have it.

I’m torn with the same feeling I have for overalls. I’m not a big fan.  A catsuit; now we’re talking! It’s sexy. Although a good jumpsuit (a tad more upscale than overalls but definitely laid-back) worn a certain way can carry itself. Maybe this should be entitled “how to style a jumpsuit.”

And let’s keep in mind worn in the desert with combat boots, a fashion statement it does make.

For me a style post is getting harder and harder to do, if only because the best style is personal, and while one person can pull something off, another person can look totally ridiculous wearing.  And trends come and go, as we’re well aware.

jumpsuit3

Image: atelier dore

So when I spotted this jumpsuit on another website, I had to re-think the whole thing. Because it looks fabulous.  And in pinstripes; you can’t go wrong. The fact that the model is in Morocco with the sun shining certainly doesn’t hurt.

But honestly, I was interested enough to go online to find out who the manufacturer was.  Then to my surprise I found out that the one-piece is unisex no less.

I wasn’t aware that men wore jumpsuits, so this is all new to me.

Honestly, how do you feel about this statement piece?

https://www.marrakshilife.com/desert-collection/drawstring-jumpsuit

 

Afternoon Delight: High on Tea

High TEA,

as opposed to having an ordinary cup of tea and a biscuit, is a welcome time-out to a dreary afternoon. Complete with finger sandwiches, scones and sweets, let’s just say it’s a bit more indulgent.

I’ve always taken advantage of any good recommended ‘high-tea’ in any city I’ve been to that happens to have one.  Some of my past favorites have been at the Empress hotel in Victoria, B.C., Alvear Palace Hotel in Buenos Aries, Claridge’s in London and the Ritz-Carlton in Montreal.

In Vancouver we have the Secret Garden Tea Company. I like that it’s a family run business with a story. Owned and run by Sisters-in-law Kathy and Erin Wyder, who were inspired by their two remarkable grandmothers (Gammy Bentall + Nan McBeath). I recently ordered several dozen sandwiches for a gathering that did not disappoint.  But I think the best thing is to actually go there in person to take in the ambiance.

A brief history – the British tradition began in mid 1700’s as an afternoon meal usually served between 3 and 4 o’clock. Initially, it was a meal for the working man, taken standing up or sitting on tall stools, thus the term ‘high’. Tea. Me; I’ll take mine sitting down.

From the website:

In a world of franchising and fleeting trends, the values at the core of The Secret Garden Tea Company are timeless: Stay small. Be good at what you do. If it sounds like The Secret Garden is a bit of a throwback to simpler times, it is.

Maybe that’s why, since it’s inception in 1995, people come from miles around to the cozy little teahouse. Certainly for the delicious food and soothing tea, but also for the good feeling they take home with them. A feeling that comes from relaxing instead of rushing, and from reflecting on all the sweet little good things of life. Like family. Like friends.

And a lovely cup of tea.

Kathy and Erin Wyder.

The Secret Garden Tea Company

Location: Kerrisdale Village

2138 West 40th Ave.
Vancouver BC
V6M 1W5

(604) 261-3070

 

Trashy Art

We belong to a generation that is extremely consumerist, materialist, and greedy. It’s total garbage!  But here’s how an inspiring artist gets around it while creating breathtakingly beautiful work.

Portuguese street artist Artur Bordalo, known by the moniker Bordalo II, is showing off some bold new street art in an abandoned Lisbon warehouse. The artist, who was born in 1987, revitalizes end-of-life materials discarded by others to create his pieces. Bordalo draws attention to wastefulness by creating massive vibrant animals out of discarded plastic car parts, and other trash  – and the whimsical designs are unlike anything you’ve ever seen.

Garbage is given new life as colorful animal sculptures in Bordalo II’s solo exhibition Attero – the Latin word for ‘waste.’ The trash is locally sourced and might come from old cars, construction materials, or whatever else the artist happens to find. He often transforms the debris into animals because they are particularly vulnerable to harm from our society which too often throws items away, polluting the environment.

Attero calls us to reflect on our own consumption, according to Lara Seixo Rodrigues, founder of nonprofit arts organization Mistaker Maker, which curated Attero. She remarked “Whether on a large or small scale, his unusual sculptural creations oblige us to question and rethink our own role as actors in this static, consumerist, and self-destructive society, which exploits, often in an abusive way, the resources that nature offers us.”

Check out more of Bordalo II’s pieces on Facebook and Instagram.

Taken from inhabitat.com article by Lacy Cooke

 

 

 

Self Care: riding the wave

I’ve been warned.

Somewhere in Sinai, Egypt. Taken from a photo album.  Photo: d. king

How after someone very close to you passes, where you’re first in mourning, then experiencing major grief, after a certain time period you suddenly begin to get a bit stronger, then you reach a low point.  Then you’re okay again, then you’re not. Kind of like riding a wave.  It’s happening. An ebb and a flow.  High tide and low tide. I suppose lack of sleep and sometimes not eating properly doesn’t help the situation.

I know what I’m supposed to do.  Just go with the flow and ride it out, hoping for the time when the memories will become pleasant instead of painful.  Actually they’re not really painful because most are joyful, but it’s in the joyfulness of remembering what was good that brings on sadness if that makes sense. For me it’s the physical loss of the person who’s no longer here for himself, not just for me. It’s his loss even more so than mine. What hurts most is the person having lost the fight and having lost hope. It seems in the end you never really know the truth. Whether they came to terms and finally let go with acceptance. As for the rest of us, we have to continue to live our lives.  That’s where I’m at.

Among the Bedouins in Sinai, Egypt

It may also have something to do with yesterday, sitting for hours finally clearing out a locker space filled to the brim with stuff I haven’t seen in many years.  In an over-heated room no less.  And sorting into 3 almost equal piles, suitcases and boxes filled with clothing, equipment, photos, etc. 1)keepers 2)salvation army 3)dumpster. And who keeps every single report card they ever had? It went into the “keeper” pile (just in case one day I want to remember how well (or not) I did in math in Grade 3). And re-discovering a photo album with amazing memories from Egypt & Israel then going home and turning on the news only to be shocked and saddened about the senseless killings in Egypt. Which puts everything into perspective.

On the terrace overlooking the river Nile

So after a restless night of a little doggy waking me up 3 times to go out (at least she woke me; smart girl – better than the alternative) I have not been able to get back to sleep.  And I couldn’t make up my mind what to eat for dinner and didn’t feel like cooking or even seeing anyone. So I ended up going to my favorite cheese shop and getting the grab-bag (they choose for you), then my favorite pastry shop and getting a fresh baked baguette (white bread, no less), and a little pumpkin pie and on the way home stopping at yet another local place for homemade cookies.  I chose 3 kinds – heart shaped jam filled, chocolate/marzipan + coconut macaroon.  I don’t feel too guilty cause due to no effort of my own I lost 6 lbs. without even trying.  Although for health reasons I don’t intend to make a habit out of this. So if I gain 3 back tonight so what.

On my way home, feeling like I could use a little therapy, I stopped by the local wine shop for a sampling of a wine called “therapy”.  After 4 sips (from 4 different bottles) I could already feel it. No more for me.

I realize this is a “self-care” post.  So I don’t know if my message is clear or if I even have a message.   If there is one, it’s just that sometimes you just have to give in to what is and not question why. Sometimes self-care is doing what feels right, right at the moment.

After all, tomorrow is another day, godammit.

 

 

 

 

Little things

Life is a good teacher and a good friend.  Things are always in transition, if we could only realize it.  Nothing ever sums itself up in the way that we like to dream about.  The off-center, in-between state is an ideal situation apparently , a situation in which we don’t get caught, and in which we can open our hearts and minds beyond limit.” – from When Things Fall Apart.I am now the proud mom of Siamese Twins

And the little camper that could go practically any place, from beach to rocky road and everywhere in between

It’s all BIG!