Waiting on shooting stars… Back to my rambles

Hello blog!!

I am afraid even to look back to see when my last post was! I feel like it’s been ages since I’ve even considered posting here and, you know what? That’s okay. I wasn’t well. I haven’t been well physically or mentally for a little while and now I am feeling alright despite a slight headache and I’m going to celebrate! With a blog post! Yay!

Usually I post on Fridays, but hey! I’m home alone today and I have nothing else to do and this blog does deserve a little added explanation as to why I’ve neglected it so long.

 

For the sake of this post making sense, I’ll explain slightly what happened to me for, what, a month? More? I feel like I’ve explained it a thousand times already but, essentially, I’ve been without wifi and a phone for around a month now, I think more than that even? The reasons for this  involve a kaput cellphone battery and slow internet access. A lot more has went into it and I’ve had periods of being able to use others’ phone hotspots and wifi from other locations (I even had a back-up phone for awhile, but it kinda wimped out on me too, haha!) but for the most part I’ve been without access to social media and blogging and most difficult for me, my best friends.

On top of that, my situation right now makes it so I cannot really leave the house, at least not independently. I don’t have a car or a license and I don’t have any friends that could come and pick me up. Even if I did, my house is far away and out of the way so I don’t think they’d even want to. My family is fairly large and very loud and overwhelming and I’ve just been stuck here without anything to really do except watch and re-watch DVDS and clean.

 

Ah, that sounds like a pity party. It’s not supposed to be a pity party. I’ve been safe and have had plenty of food and sometimes my siblings are great. And I am grateful. The reason I’m explaining this to you is because I want to be honest. I haven’t been well! I haven’t been well at all. Mentally, I’ve been enormously overwhelmed. There were moments in the last few weeks when I just had no idea what to do with myself anymore. Existing itself had become … well, tortuous.

Again, not a pity party! I know I’m not the only one with mental health issues.

 

I talk a lot about optimism. On social media and in life in general. The honest truth is, I am not always happy. In fact, happy is so hard. I never want you to get the idea about me that because I post about optimism or sunshine or goodness or dogs, I am happy. That would be so far from the truth it’s almost laughable. Optimism does not equal happiness!

Naturally, I am not happy. Naturally, I am a nervous, fretful person with social issues and a tinge of depersonalization. Eep. But I’m also a Christian! And my decision to choose optimism has everything to do with that fact.

Optimism doesn’t mean I get to front with a protective barrier of fluffy kittens. Optimism doesn’t mean I get to lie to you that everything’s okay. Optimism only means that I know deep inside that I have a hope and a reason to go on and that I am going to hold on to that fact and do my very best to live it out.

 

The past several weeks have not been good to me. My current mental situation makes me feel very isolated and detached from reality and so being away from good friends and other little things that ground me, I found myself holding on to the smallest things to give me hope and get me through. I remember specifically: watching You’ve Got Mail (the only movie I had downloaded on my laptop and available to watch, but then I just sort of got obsessed with it and it became a comfort), whenever we would buy Cheez-Its because for some reason Cheetos are bomb-diggity to me now though I used to hate them… ooh! and especially a very particular NASA hat I had ordered online.

This hat’s arrival date, for some reason, kept getting pushed weeks later and later until eventually I had to stop living in denial and realize that it had been lost in the mail. I ended up getting a free-2-day-delivery-included refund and after that it, came right away, but somehow the waiting for this hat became a tiny reason to keep moving forward. For some reason, the waiting was the lovely part. The waiting was the tiny bit of hope in all this darkness my brain was going through.

 

And now, sitting here looking back, I feel like a thousand supernovas are exploding in my heart. Because it was so hard, but somehow it was so beautiful too. The name of Jesus was ever-present on my lips because the name of Jesus and a NASA hat were the only good things I could remember.

Today I have one NASA hat and one new cell phone and a brain-full of hopeful things on the horizon. I am done waiting for some things, enough that I am provided for and quite happy, but I know the waiting isn’t over. On a grander scale, there is a lot of waiting left to do yet.

Somehow, through all this waiting, we have to cling to something. The sky is dark now, but while we’re waiting on the sun to rise, let’s look for shooting stars.

 

God is going to keep blessing you. It may not be in the way that you hope or expect, but He loves you and He is never going to stop blessing you. Look for the joy. Look for little tiny pieces of optimism. Look to the sky and you will see shooting stars.

Thoughts… June 2nd, 2017

10:58 PM ~

Remembering it’s Friday. Remembering I post on Fridays. Determination, because I want to keep my writerly promises.

10:59 PM ~

Thinking about humanity and the weird little things we do. Like, making inspiration walls or Pinterest boards, just to visualize the things we usually keep in our heads. This is a cute thing. Dreamers are cute.

11:01 PM ~

Thinking about tomorrow. Not sure what we’re doing tomorrow. My heart beats funny because of my anxiety. Wondering why my brain likes to make my heart beat faster for no reason. That’s silly. Stop that.

11:03 PM ~

Been thinking about the things I say to people. I’m thinking about what was running through my mind as I washed my hair just earlier. About how I wanted to apologize for all the awkward and annoying things I say to people. Wondering why I feel like I’m so awkward and annoying. Is it because of the things I do or the way I perceive them? I wish insecurity wasn’t my default emotion.

11:05 PM ~

Thinking about time and how it just keeps ticking slowly and doesn’t seem like it’s ever going to end except I bet one day it probably will. I bet in Heaven we won’t have clocks. That would be pleasant.

11:07 PM ~

Thinking about all the people who are sad right now who I can’t make feel better. I hope they feel better tomorrow.

11:08 PM ~

I had a thought about waffles. I don’t like waffles that much, but I was thinking about a waffle with strawberries on top — eating it and looking out the window as so many strangers shuffle by and I sip some coffee and I try to get back to work.

11:09 PM ~

Thinking about I can’t wait to live on my own. Silent adventures and dozens and dozens of filled pages and I’ll live in a city somewhere and string up fairy lights just because.

11:10 PM ~

Wondering how I’ll do my makeup tomorrow. Wondering about what Paris is like and if I should get back to learning French so I could fit in over there one day.

11:12 PM ~

I just heard a noise and half-wondered if it was a ghost or maybe a demon.

11:14 PM ~

Just got an email notification… And now I’m wondering if I should get a cup of tea or something after this. Or maybe not.

11:15 PM ~

Looking over at the two new dresses I got. Thinking about when I’m going to wear them. Just remembered I bought a NASA hat and it’s coming in the mail and I’m excited for that.

11:17 PM ~

Wondering how quickly other people run through thoughts. Noticing mine are about 1-3 minutes long. But, of course, they have to be faster than that. Because I’m writing mine down. I won’t try to estimate anything though. I’m terrible at that.

11:18 PM ~

Trying to decide if I want to watch Adventure Time or the Office.

11:19 PM ~

Thinking it’s funny how brains are always so busy thinking all these busy little thoughts about what we’re going to do next. I wonder if I’m too focused on what is next and what’s going to happen and how things will be in the future and if they’re going to be like the past or totally different. I have no chill about things like that. I realize how fueled I am by thoughts and fear of the future. There’s some kind of bible verse about that.

11:24 PM ~

Here’s the one I was thinking of…

“Do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?” Luke 12:22-26

11:26 PM ~

This one too..

“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:34

11:28 PM ~

And just for good measure…

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

Snapshots

I took a step outside. Breathed in the scent of the spring-visited woods. And I just kind of knew deep inside that life would work itself out.

~

I made myself an extra cup of coffee, on a day where I felt out of touch. Couldn’t remember what I was doing for three seconds together that day. The coffee didn’t really help that much, but, if only a little bit, it got me by.

~

I slept in too late and lunch and breakfast were one and the same. Everything was late that day. Somehow, through all of that, I felt a profound sense of acceptance. I’m allowed to make mistakes. I’m allowed to be okay.

~

That day, the greening country road was as pretty as the idea of getting home, slipping off my boots, and making myself a cup of tea. Maybe even a little prettier.

~

There have been days that I didn’t get dressed until three in the afternoon, but somehow doing it anyway reminds me that I’m still fighting. Even if it takes me a while, sometimes, to pick up my sword.

~

Thunder late at night. I forgot what thunder sounded like until lightning reminded me of the concept. Loud, as though it was in my head and not just outside my window. Reminders of childlike fears when you can’t go to sleep because you’re afraid of what you don’t understand; of what’s hidden when the lightning leaves.

~

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~

There are gentle raindrops on the car window and that always makes me think. Everyone is blessedly quiet and the rainfall builds until water is cascading down and everyone is just blessedly quiet and that always makes me think.

~

A little bow in my hair became all the whimsy I needed to get by.

~

Late, late at night, when your half of the world is dreadfully quiet, and there seems to be nobody… Well, there’s one person I can always whisper my little worries and ideas and God-dreams to. And get a whisper back, when I finally pause for breath.

~

A story in my pocket. A story I’ve been working on for months. A new story. I have fresh dreams and fresh plans and a fresh hope to keep anything from going stale. It’s good to keep stories in your pockets.

~

People buy flowers sometimes and it’s so odd, but somehow so necessary to get by.

~

The day when I sat and laughed until my bones ached and kept laughing still just because it felt so good to be alive and I didn’t think I ever wanted to stop. I was laughing over absolutely nothing.

Book Review: “Fairytale: The Novel”

Good morning, friends!

Recently, I got to be involved in the twitter read-along for Hope Pennington’s “Fairytale: The Novel.” I was super excited to be a part of this because I’ve been following Hope Pennington for some time now and have really enjoyed the content she makes. Joining the read-along seemed like a no-brainer because I never got around to reading her book and I was so excited to see what it was all about!

Of course, maybe I should have thought about how little time I would have this month before I decided to do this, haha! I ended up not being able to participate as much as I wanted to! But nevertheless, I loved the book, and I’m super excited to get to be a part of it’s blog tour!
So without further rambling, here is my spoiler-free review of “Fairytale: The Novel.”
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Hope Pennington is a homeschool graduate, a YouTuber, an author, and an overall encouraging, lovely person. I first stumbled across her Instagram and fell in love with her posts and the way she was inspiring people to embrace their geeky side. I then decided to look into her YouTube as well. Hope posts videos on a lot of topics, but pretty much all of them have a tone of encouragement and I love that so much. Her mantra is “we are epic heroes” and I think that’s so awesome.
So, of course, after falling in love with Hope’s Instagram, YouTube, and overall personality, I would have to read her book. When this book tour and read-along came along, I had my opportunity! And, overall, I’m glad I got to read it.

The story is about an average teenage boy name Sean who is sucked into a cliche fantasy world and forced to be involved in your typical fairytale plot line. What he finds is that his ability to predict the storyline is just what he needs to help save their world from destruction.



~ What I liked ~

Here’s what I liked most: The voice. Some could interpret this book as cheesy, but I think the author was well aware of that and used it to the story’s advantage. The book plays around with all the cheesy fantasy themes that we’re all acquainted by now and the outcome is pretty hilarious. Our main character, Sean, is the voice of reason in all of this. His sarcasm and sense of humor contrasted with the average fairytale storyline is perfect. The author somehow manages to take two cliches, the “sarcastic teenage boy” cliche and every fairytale character you grew up with, and come up with a very interesting and humorous balance.
I think overall, the characters were very strong. And despite most of them being cliches, they were original and unique in their own ways and managed to win my favor. I also really loved Steve. Steve is great.

The story itself was very fun and I think Hope has a great writing style and an awesome sense of humor. I’m really interested to see what else she’ll write!

~ What I did not like ~

I always hate to say anything negative when I enjoyed the book overall, but I did actually have a hard time with some of the book. A lot of it was that I was very busy and did not have the time to give it my full attention, but I do think some of it was the writing itself. The book at times very much had the feel of a first-time novel. And while it was very good and I enjoyed it very much, I felt that the author is still developing her voice.

There were some parts that I found a bit confusing, some plot points that I didn’t get. There were moments when I felt it was dragging on or that it wasn’t cohesive enough, but it was little enough for me to ignore.

~

I will also say two other things, just for the sake of the accuracy of this review.
First is that I have not, as of writing this review, completely finished this book. The ending could be a total wreck or totally amazing for all I know. And that’s entirely due to me being busy with finals and I apologize for that.

The second thing is that the review copy that I received was not the final copy of the book. I noticed some editing mistakes here or there as well as some distracting editing notes and so that affected my overall perception of the story to a small degree. (Hence, perhaps, the perception that it is feels like a very “first time” sort of novel.) I don’t know how much of that (I assume, all of it) was edited out of the final copy and so I’m recommending you take the negative part of my review with a grain of salt this go around.

I will actually be purchasing the final copy soon, but I don’t think I’ll be updating this review. So you’re on you’re own for this one, buddy.

 

~ Would I recommend it? ~

I would! Not only to support an epic creator, but to enjoy an awesome story. If the idea of this satiric story struck your fancy, absolutely go for it!
And check out Hope’s other stuff too, while you’re at it! She has an epic social media presence and her YouTube is so lovely.

 

~ Rating ~

My scale, for reference, is…

One Star: I hated it
Two Stars: I didn’t like it
Three Stars: I liked it, but I probably won’t read it again
Four Stars: I really liked it and I might read it again
Five Stars: I loved it and it is my precious and I will read it again every fortnight and probably buy all of the available merch.
…I’m giving this 3 and a half stars. I liked it, and I’m super interested in reading whatever Hope writes next!

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Thanks so much for reading, friends!

And a special thanks to Priya Prithviraj at Writerly Yours for being so lovely and so patient with me!!

I hope you have a lovely Friday, beautiful readers. Tune in next week for more finals week related existential crises! Or maybe I’ll write about cats, who knows?

Both? Both is good.

Bye!



More information on Hope Pennington…

 

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Bio: Hope Pennington is a homeschooled graduate living in Kerrville Texas, author of the young adult novel Fairytale and creator of The Epic Place YouTube channel where she encourages geeks, nerds and fan girls to always remember that #WeAreEpicHeroes every single day of our lives. Coffee is her spirit animal and if she had it her way she’d be living on the TARDIS from Doctor Who going on endless time travel adventures.

 

 



Twitter // Instagram // Tumblr // Blog // YouTube



 

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In which I am a very busy college student, but am still sending out all the gentle fairy vibes I can manage…

Good day, ladies and lads or whoever the heck reads these things! *waves awkwardly*
Quick notice: Next week I’m going to be reviewing Hope Pennington’s book “Fairytale: The Novel” as a part of a ~blog tour~ so just like, get super pumped about it and make sure to tune in then!! I was actually scheduled to post it this week, but because of my exams, I’ve had to push it down. Really hoping it will work out next week and I won’t have to wait until the week after. So busy, eep! Sorry blog tour friends!
Please do check out Hope Pennington’s stuff in the meantime though (Twitter // Instagram // Tumblr). She is pretty epic!

So… I don’t have much of a plan for today’s post because, like I said, I’ve been super busy trying to keep up with finals preparations. Essays and studying and trying not to cry! Yay! But all is well. And I will make it through as always and then I will have a glorious summer break.
So, today I’m just going to write a list of things I’ve learned this week and throw in some of my recent photography and sincerely hope you enjoy it!
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  1. I am literally an adult now.
Does this mean I’m throwing out my flower crowns and buying a business lady suit on Amazon? Heck no! I’m still going to watch cartoons and sing Disney songs and be better at holding a conversation with a five year old than with someone my age. That’s just my deal.
No, it just means I’m a little different inside and I’ve come to accept that recently. I’ve got to start taking things more seriously. I’ve got to put away some of those obsessive daydreams and start investing in right now a little more.
Not to say I don’t believe in my dreams anymore. That is my advantage over the usual sort of adultlings, actually. I keenly believe in miracles and rising up from the ashes and living a crazy, meaningful, beautiful life without sacrificing my passions and dreams. Unrealistic does not mean impossible and I will stand by that.
So, yeah. I’m still a reckless dreamer, but I just know I’ve got to start taking some of my dreams more seriously and start seriously praying over them, knowing and trusting that God can make anything happen. I’m a dreamer, but like, a serious dreamer.
~
  1. Patience is a very good thing.
I’m the kind of person that groans internally just a bit when I hear the word patience. Because yeah, I get that waiting is important, but why does it have to take so dang long?
Or at least, I used to be like that. Recently my eyes have been opened to just how beautiful patience is. It’s still hard, yeah… but it’s sort of amazing too.
Patience is faith in action. Patience is a little pink bud, happy to bask in the sun and dance in the rain, knowing deep inside that one day she will bloom. I just want to bask in the sun and dance in the rain, knowing and trusting one day I will bloom.
And it’s so weird, because now that I understand that, I want the waiting to last a little longer. I want to savor it and I think I’ll be sad when it ends. It’s almost as if God has matured my heart ever so slightly. I see that responsibility is beautiful. Purity — of mind, body, and heart — is even more precious than I could have ever imagined. Quiet trust is a tear-worthy wonder.
I want to put away my anxious daydreams. I want to throw out all of my silly schemes and plans. I want to stop worrying that my dreams will never come true and instead, I just want to deeply know— just remember that God’s dreams are better and bigger and brighter and more beautiful than mine. This isn’t in my hands. It never has been.
And you know what? There are so many quiet, beautiful things in the now and I just want to soak them in while I’m waiting. I’m a little pink bud, enjoying the sound of rain and the warmth of the sun; happy just in having faith that one day I will bloom.
~
 
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  1. I’ll never be a bodybuilder.
I hate exercising too often to actually ever build muscle. I think I need to just start focusing on being healthy and not on my weight/general overall squishiness. Because sometimes exercising is so great and I just need to let that happen and stop stressing myself out.
Yeah.
~
  1. It is good to be gentle with yourself.
Are you an anxious blob like me? Do you criticize yourself for stupid things like the way you talk/walk/breathe?
Well chill it, man!
Listen. You are a valid person. You can just exist. You can just breathe and walk and talk and eat and create and exist. Be gentle with yourself, okay? You’ll find that when you are, life isn’t as scary, responsibilities aren’t as scary, social expectations aren’t as scary. Why? Because you’re not basing your worth on those things.
You’ll always be so much more than that, okay?
~
  1. Sometimes it’s okay to just watch cartoons and eat cereal and chill out.
Sometimes you just have to embrace the chill. Just be a kid for a while, eat your Froot Loops, and chill.
~
  1. Umm… that’s it?
It’s only been a week, yeesh.
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Haha, hope you enjoyed that little post! Hopefully next week a be a little less busy and a little more coherent.
Have a great week, lovely friends!

“God, I’m not trying to rule the roost. I don’t want to be king of the mountain. I haven’t meddled where I have no business or fantasized grandiose plans. I’ve kept my feet on the ground, I’ve cultivated a quiet heart. Like a baby in its mother’s arms, my soul is a baby content. Wait Israel, for God. Wait with hope. Hope now; hope always!”
 
Psalm 131:1-3 (Message Bible)

My Relationship With Giving Up…

Good morning! Good Friday! Good life!

It’s been a strange week for me. My main memories of it involve all the writing I did about the Declaration of Independence and Thomas Jefferson for my research paper, the large amount of Adventure Time I watched during my breaks (for some reason this is my new favorite show?? — make its all the butt jokes), and today, which was the most eventful day of my week and all we did was grocery shop…

I had a feeling yesterday evening that is a recurring fear of mine — that I’m somehow losing my grounding and missing things and not remembering my life as much as I’d like to. Honestly, I think it mainly happens when I let my days run together and become an autonomous routine. I guess I’m the kind of person who needs more than routine to feel alive.

Well, just a few hours ago, I remembered exactly what it was that makes life so lovely. For me, anyway. It’s appreciating the little moments of childlike abandon. Braiding flower chains, reading poetry, running barefoot, jumping in a trampoline, talking about silly things under a spring-blooming tree. It’s choosing to remember the things that went right with gratitude and let the things that went wrong fade and pass. It’s a cup of cinnamon dulce latte after an entire Lent of giving up coffee. Okay yeah. It’s not Easter yet and technically it’s still Lent, but whatever.

It really is the little things sometimes… I guess that’s what I’m trying to say.

Am I rambling?

Yes. Yes, I am.

 

Today’s post is not about gratitude, haha. It’s about my relationship with giving up/failure as an artist. I really hope you enjoy!!
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When you’re a writer — nay, when you’re ANY kind of artist, there comes a point when you have to… give up.

Okay, okay. I don’t necessarily mean giving up your entire art! That would be so sad! I actually mean specific projects. Because, sometimes, things just don’t work out.

My first novel was an overdramatic Christian contemporary tale about a young boy, his friend-zoning redhead friend, and a series of very moody events that somehow led to said young boy’s salvation. I wrote it in a summer, all 20,000 words of it. I believed in this story so much. I worked so hard, but… eventually? I had to give it up.

I really didn’t want to give this story up. Even now, there’s a part of me deep down that wants to pick it back up and write it again, patting it on it’s silly head and telling it it will be alright. But believe me, though the ones who read it (I’m so sorry) might tell you it wasn’t that bad (kind, kind souls), it was so bad.
And to be perfectly honest, I’m okay with that! It was my first novel ever and first novels have every right in the world to be horrible. They are not always horrible, but they, by their very nature, are entitled to be. Anyone who tells you differently is selling something. Beginnings are always a little sketchy.

Since this first novel, my ideology about giving up has changed enormously.

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Here’s the thing, pal. I have a lot of ideas. A lot. That’s probably the one compliment I’ll ever give myself. I am good at coming up with ideas. (Not to say I know what restaurant we should go to, haha. That’s the problem — I have too many ideas and it’s hard to decide. Eep!)

So I have all these ideas floating around in my head, right? Just yesterday I came up with a wildly exciting idea for a book and I spent a good half hour on a Pinterest board for it. I completely intend to write that story as soon as possible.

And… that’s the problem. I have too many ideas. A lot of them promising ideas, but I have no time to see them all through.

How do you know it’s time to give a story up? Or — let’s diversify this to include other art forms too, just because I like doing that — when do you know that song you’ve been working on is just not going to work? When is it time to throw out that canvas and start a new painting?
With my first novel, there came a shift in my attitude towards it. It was when I realized I was twisting the plot too much just to make unrealistic characters and flat personalities seem more interesting. And then the plot ended up being unrealistic and uninteresting. Could I have saw it through until the end? Sure I could’ve! And I admire anyone who has that kind of patience.

Maybe it was simply that I didn’t believe in the story enough. I was bored with the characters, bored with the plot, and I had a thousand other new ideas to attend to.

Let’s grab one of those new ideas I had and talk about it. My second novel, for example. It was a story about an eccentric old women and her magical library. It was one of the most fun stories I ever got to write, but after a first draft, I realized there were some huge flaws and I just didn’t know how to go about fixing it. And I gave it up.

Maybe I could have saw it through. Maybe there was more to be found in it. It’s just that my heart wasn’t into that story anymore. I had bigger and brighter ideas.

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And so has been every novel since. I’ve had two since then. Another contemporary; 50,000 words, and a dystopian/sci-fi; barely 20,000, a very flawed first draft. All given up because I had bigger and brighter ideas.
The more I think about it the sadder it sounds!! …But here’s the thing: as I write and continue to grow as I writer, I realize I want more out of my stories. I want them to mean more, I want them to be more vivid and fascinating, I want to make people feel things and think things. As I improve as a writer and as an artist, my ideals improve and it’s those “failed” novels that are pushing me forward as a writer.

Every novel I write teaches me something new — what I like and what I don’t like. Sometimes that means I have to spend a year writing something I don’t like. And you know what? I am so hecking okay with that.
As of now, I’m working two stories. I believe in them both with all my heart. I’ve found niches where I feel that I can shine. I’ve found a writing style I feel I can expand upon and grow in. I’ve learned how fun it is to play with language and to not worry about the strict rules I’d always placed upon myself. I’ve learned how to write what I’d want to read rather than what I feel like others would like.

And maybe one day I’ll give these stories up too… and that will be okay. Why? Because I am learning so much.

In the end, isn’t that what art is for? Teaching us loads about ourselves?
I hope one day I can publish my work. That’s been one of my biggest dreams. For now though, I am so happy to be in a season of learning.

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Note to anyone who noticed I forgot to publish last week:

  1. I love you.
  2. I’m sorry! I was sick and sad and busy, but now I am okay and I am keeping my posting promises, hehe.

Why you should smell the flowers…

“There’s a fairy in the garden…”

There’s a fairy in the garden. She lives just beyond your peripheral vision. She ducks behind the daisies when you turn your head her way. She flits away to the tulips and hides herself between rose petals.

She lives in your garden — in the back wood, beneath the floor boards, just beyond your peripheral. She takes little things to aid her in her tinkerings, but always makes sure to repay you for your donation. With a bloom. A dandelion. A bud on the apple tree. A wildflower, blooming bravely between the crack in the sidewalk.

This fairy is very clever, very kind, and very courageous. She fends for herself, but takes time to bless your life with the small things. Flowers. A sprinkling of fairy dust here or there that triggers bursts of joyful laughing without reason, sweet nostalgia, and gratitude for the simple things in life.

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Where can you find this fairy?

Well, the trouble is, she would very much like to meet you, but sadly, she cannot. We live in a world that, for the most part, does not believe in fairies. And of course you know that is a very dangerous world for a fairy to live in.

But if you really want to find your fairy — follow the clues.

Fairies can be found where flowers bloom wildly in abundance. Listen carefully and you just might hear a rustle or a tiny snap of a twig. Don’t forget to thank her for the flowers. She most likely was feeling extra happy and put them there to make you smile.

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Have you ever felt a burst of happiness out of nowhere? Surely you must have been exposed to fairy dust. Even the smallest amount of fairy dust can cause joyful feelings of every kind.

Have you spotted a pretty bird and it doesn’t seem to be flying away? Or perhaps a deer that seems content to observe you quietly? Probably a fairy is nearby. Animals and fairies are very close friends. An animal that has come in recent contact with a fairy will be calm and gentle and unafraid for quite some time.

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Be still. Be quiet. Listen for quiet movements and subtle rustlings. But for heaven’s sake do not go looking for her! Do not try to trap her or capture her or hurt her!

Indeed, what a fairy wants most is for you to enjoy her work. She encourages the flowers to grow so that you will be tempted to wear them in your hair. She wants you to blow dandelions seeds and make wishes. She wants you to braid daisies into flower crowns. She wants you bring daffodils in and put them in your favorite vase.

Just enjoy life. And that’s how you will know you have a fairy friend nearby.

~

And my goodness, please:

Smell the flowers.