{Echo} Week 3- Abundance Roundup

(click to see larger)

Light and  Dark.

Dark and Light.

A Yin/Yang sorta thing, dontcha think?

Seems to me, that the transition between the two recently is happening all too often in my life.  Mind you, I am not complaining – I learned long ago that you need the dark to know the light. I see the value in it, I truly do – but that doesn’t mean I am immune to the occasional woe-is-me moment. So I allow myself brief moments of that pity.. then I dust myself off, and work through it until the light appears. It doesn’t always emerge instantly, or even quickly for that matter… but it DOES always find a way to shine through.

I couldn’t fathom a diptych that would better encompass that inner battle I am constantly fighting. For what its worth, I am a total metaphor whore.. visual representations are so vital to my being and wellness. Do you see what I see in it? There is the obvious abundance of leaves.. and while that is all lovely and stuff, it is so not what I was going for.

Let me break it down a bit.

A downward gaze with no end in sight.. trampled upon leaves that show signs of aging accompanied by these brittle, fragile shells that have fallen… dark and awful lonely; despite the abundance of company. The cold shrill of a bitter wind and the quiet, almost melancholy tones of the rustling echoing. I see an abundance of emptiness, and shells of what once were.

I suppose In my worst moments, I feel exactly that.

Yet – if I merely look up and change my perspective … an abundance of color and light shine through. The path becomes longer, curving through the glorious shelter of the  autumnal trees. I see life. I see light. I see the path I must follow.

I see and feel that abundance of light coupled with an eternal abundance of hope. It is as if the world just suddenly woke up.

Just… for me.

“Everything you need you already have. You are complete right now, you are a whole, total person, not an apprentice person on the way to someplace else. Your completeness must be understood by you and experienced in your thoughts as your own personal reality.”
– Wayne Dyer

Throughout this last week, in the moments that were dark and full of those yucky woes.. I heard Susan’s words echoing (how apt!) in my mind: “it is filled with the abundance of what matters most. love, love” What an incredible, much-needed reminder that my life is indeed full, even when my Bipolar mind tricks me into thinking it is not. Another tool I have cultivated is this book: Get It Done When You’re Depressed , I highly recommend the strategies to anyone who has trouble being productive when fighting a depression.

I may not be able to be change the fact that I am bipolar, but I don’t have to fully give in to those debilitating demons or let them rule me either. I choose to fight, always.

I am not the only one who has found these prompts to be eerily relevant in my life… so please, take a look at all the other wonderful souls who have taken part, their images and stories just may touch you too.

If  I have inadvertently forgotten you, or you choose to join in (yay!) … please let me know in the comments section and I will update the list .. it is wonderful discovering  the unique visions y’all have in this beautiful life, I can’t get enough of it.

Need/want a partner?  Join the Flickr group and post here! It is my sincere wish that it shall be the start of some fabulous collaborations and friendships for y’all.

The new prompt, Week 4 – will be posted next Wednesday… November 25th, 2009.

With an abundance of gratitude,

Chrysti

P.S. Shameless self-promotion whoring here: only 2 days left of my mega artography sale – details here! Won’t be another one like it for at least 6+ months! Thanks!

{Echo} Week 3- Abundance

 Gourds

See that photo above? Initially, I had planned to send it Susan for the prompt I chose this go round – ‘abundance’. But then, I wasn’t so sold on the toning.. and decided to go for the one you see below.

Gourds - 2

Yet, it still didn’t sit right with me. 

So I sent her a different photo all together… one that didn’t necessarily fit the literal, obvious definition of abundance.. but it was the one that rang true within my heart, the one that is a bit more connected to my life today, in this moment.. my now.  The simple shot I sent her reminds me of a few things my sweet pets give me daily… that I admittedly take for granted a bit too often.

An abundance: Of love.

An abundance: Of adoration.

An abundance: Of perseverance.

An abundance: Of hope.

Animals have so very much to teach us, if we just allow them to.

When I chose the abundance theme, I had in mind all of Autumn’s blessings – the plethora of pumpkins, gourds, striking colors and those oh-so-glorious leaves that often render me breathless. I chose it because on any given day I see an abundance of beauty.. even in unlikely places. I had even planned to use something like this as my second choice…

Pumpkins

But the universe seems to have had a different plan in mind; as the last two weeks have weighed heavily on me.  I have to make a few more of those won’t-they-just-go-away-please-stop-nagging-me sort of life changing decisions, which as we all know… is never easy. Finanically, I am more than a bit terrified (If you have ever thought of buying from me – now would be an awesome time). The issues I am facing are matters that simply do not have one designated, clear path and try as i might- wishing them away just doesn’t seem to do a darn bit of good.

“Whatever we are waiting for – peace of mind, contentment, grace, the inner awareness of simple abundance – it will surely come to us, but only when we are ready to receive it with an open and grateful heart.”
Sarah Ban Breathnach

So, I must trust both my heart and my instincts, rely on my life experiences and ultimately know that I am making choices – as right or wrong as they may turn out to be – that are made with the best of intentions.. choices I genuinely don’t think I will regret, and above all else… I am trying to act with integrity; in ways I shall be proud of years down the line. I continually try and dwell on the simple blessings that surround me, to be grateful for what I have and to show gratitude to those who are there for me in my times of need. Most of all though, I am trying not to let fear guide or take hold of me. (no pressure, right?)

 “When you are grateful fear disappears and abundance appears”
 -Anthony Robbins

“Not what we have but what we enjoy, constitutes our abundance.”
– John Petit-Senn

Throughout all of this, that word I chose – abundance – kept popping into my rambly-it-never-friggin-stops-mind – and what an incredible thing that has turned out to be. It has helped to keep my focus on the abundance of things I do have – the best of which, just aren’t tangible.  I *think* it was in Sheri Gaynor‘s book –  Creative Awakenings: Envisioning the Life of Your Dreams Through Art .. where I first read about choosing a word and living it with intention.. this experience has taught me I want to revisit and explore that concept while incorporating it into my life permanently.

After all of the back and forth.. what photo did I choose for my part?

 abundance

Much like lil’ ol’ me.. that old building has an abundance of untold stories. It has an abundance of structural problems, yet it somehow remains sound. Character? plenty of it.. I can only aspire to be that rich in it.  There is an abundance of contrasting textures that somehow unify into this captivating sight. It is fragile, tattered and torn.. shows it miles.. yet it is undeniably strong. The unique angle I see it as, the perspective.. it is how i try to see the world. The door closed and locked.. yet beginning to push open… well the abundance of metaphors contained in that one, single photo.. it is my truth, my authenticity, my present. Kinda powerful isn’t it?

Better yet – I love how the somehow busy, frantic setting contrasts with Susan’s oh-so-calming tea shot.. it fits.

It just, fits.

abundance

(click to see it larger please!)

I am so loving this project. So loving the chance to strengthen our friendship and get to know Susan better.

So loving the opportunity to reconnect with each of you.

A quick recap:

I can’t wait to see what you in have store for Week 3 of Echo – Abundance. We invite each of you to participate in the project and show us your unique vision, your voice, your echo. Remember, to share your link in the comments here so I can add it to the roundup next Wednesday.

Wishing you an abundance of all that you love and hold dearly,

Chrysti

{Echo} Week 2- Decorate Roundup

 

Bookshelf

Photo Credit: ©chotda

 “I would be the most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves.” – Anna Quindlen

I find it so amazingly F A S C I NA T I N G  that there are so many varied interpretations of a simple, single word: decorate. To decorate for a holiday, decorated with medals, decorating with nature, decorating ones self .. it is like this never-ending well of inspiration, meaning and insight. It is a testament to both creativity and individuality.  THAT is precisely why I am loving this project so damn  darn much. if you missed the new prompt & diptychs gander over here  for a refresher.

 “Without music to decorate it, time is just a bunch of boring production deadlines or dates by which bills must be paid”  Frank Zappa

 I have been steadily adding new participants to the Week 1 – emerge  roundup– be sure to stop by and visit the new entries.  Have an emerge entry to share? Let me know over there and I will add you to the list as well :)

In the meantime, here are the awesome folks who jumped right into Echo – Week 2: Decorate!

If  I have inadvertently forgotten you, or you choose to join in (yay!) … please let me know in the comments section and I will update the list .. it is wonderful discovering  the unique visions y’all have in this beautiful life, I can’t get enough of it.

Susan & I have also started a Flickr group for Echo – we’d love for you to join us there. Need/want a partner?  Join the Flickr group and post here! It is my sincere wish that it shall be the start of some fabulous collaborations and friendships for y’all.

I am off to decorate my closets – (and yes! putting away laundry should totally count.)

It’s all about perspective.

Chrysti

P.S.  A gentle reminder that you can decorate your home with my artography & mixed media prints (and originals!) at a fraction of the price during my moving sale.. once it is gone.. it’s well.. gone. What a ridiculous saying eh?

My Love List :: What’s Yours?

Special thanks to MeganJane for sharing she likes purple’s   blog post & love list challenge. With that, I’ll start. 

:: the risk ::

I love an inspiring challenge.

I love the sound of rain tap-a-tap-tapping on an old tin roof and watching lightning storms seemingly dance over the ocean. I love the way light looks bouncing off my beaded garland on a sunny afternoon through my little kitchen window. I love simple, guilty pleasures to indulge my senses in. I love Starbucks iced venti skim mocha’s; especially sitting outside on a perfect spring day where that almost perfect light breeze is brushing your cheeks. I love the smell of autumn winds and the sounds of leaves rustling while the trees whisper.

I love custom gift wrapping in pretty colored boxes adorned with exquisite ribbons and perhaps even rustic branches tied on with twine. I love the smell of bookstores and the rush i get every time i walk into one. I love paging through old letters and diaries of people I never knew and imagining what their life must have been like. I love being connected with all that came before me. I love organizing, and making piles of trash bags to be wistfully carried away. I love finding that amazingly perfect conversation with someone you never expected outside at 2 am and staying up til dawn without ever realizing it. I love sunrises.

I love life’s little luxuries; breakfast in bed with cute pajamas on high-thread count, crisp and oh-so-cool white sheets. I love soft, cozy, squishy pillows that i can scrunch up and snuggle against; bonus points if they are cool. I love the sound of birds singing filling the air, and the way my cats crank their adorable little heads to watch. I love losing myself in a striking sunset and the joyous reminder that the world is filled with everyday beauty. I love old chandeliers with pretty prisms. I love hanging ornaments on a tree. I love google.

I love kitchenware; platters and pitchers and pottery that tells stories. I love using my grandmothers beat up old pots & worn down casserole dishes relishing the knowledge that her hands once were upon them as well. I love pausing for a moment, just to breathe that memory in. I love the original creaking, old, knicked-up hardwood floors in houses that are a century old and just begging to have their stories told. I love main streets and small towns almost as much as I love countrysides. I really do love dancing about when noone’s watching and fresh cut flowers strewn about the house. I love long, drawn-out and dramatic monologue’s and cheesy i-will-die-without-you-love speeches in movies. I love getting a french manicure and putting on a plush bright white robe after a shower. I love giggling when people fall.

I love writing letters with a micro-tipped  black ink pen on elegant stationery. I love envelopes sealed with a pretty sticker or better yet a wax seal. I love bakers twine wrapped around a stack of tattered old love letters with a strand just plaeading to be pulled. I love walking into paper source and touching every sheet of lush paper as I walk by it. I love pretty fabrics just begging to have my hands run over them. I ab-so-friggin-lutly love the genuine smile of a child at the precise moment you needed it or the kiss of a dog when you least expect it. I love serendipity. I love having the insides of my closets painted in pretty colors, and the suprise you get each time a door is opened.

 

 I love softly colored nature photos with smooth and silky bokeh. I love the smell of woodsy bonfires and the memories that rush back right along with it. I love going to Mt. Washington and peering over the city I was raised in. I love sitting amidst a crowd unnoticed and watching people pass by, observing them when they don’t necessarily know they are being watched. I love receiving a shipment of sharpies or caran d’ache watercolor crayons or faber-castell artist pens when every imaginable, glorious color is included. I love journals: small journals, big journals, journals covered in fabric, journals with pretty tassels, journals made by hand or laminated with eye-catching art. I love simple little moleskine journals, and elaborate journals with highly textured handmade paper. I love all the unclaimed dreams lying between each page. I love an iced-cold new castle beer on a sweltering hot summer day and a fresh white v-neck tee shirt paired with a pair of crisp new faded blue-jeans.

I love possibility. I love the never-ending plethora of options we have in life. I love the way words dance and I love talking in silly, nonsensical accents…just because. I love laughing; not just a simple  giggle or a slight chuckle.. but that from-the-gut super deep in-the-pit-of-your-belly laugh that often leaves you with tears running down your cheeks when you’re done. I love that life makes us smile, even when it breaks your heart. I love living, even when it’s not easy.. especially when it’s hard and delighting in the day it was all worth it. At the end of the day, I love being me and all the fateful flaws, hopeless optimism, oddities and eccentricities that entails. I love singing at the top of my lungs and not caring if it’s on key and the surprise that I was ‘caught’.  I love sarcasm, horridly bad puns and so-stupid-they are funny one-liner jokes. 

I love remembering all the things i hold dear, and truly love.

That… my friends, is my little list — for today anyway. I think i may just do this once a week, cuz’ boy oh boy did it make my day much lighter. I sense this coming on as a new theme for an art journal.

Now kiddos, let’s see your “love list”.

As she loves purple  said: “*I challenge you to make your own list. The only catch? You can’t include a single person you know on your list. No “I love the way my husband laughs” or “I love hearing my little girl call for me.” It’ll be tough, I know. (Think about it, I couldn’t include MOLLY on my list.) But this particular little exercise is about stripping away everyone who defines you and figuring out what you (not his partner; not their mother/daughter/sister/friend) love.”

Be sure to leave me a link to yours!

Warmly,
Chrysti

Exhaustion, Unconscious Mutterings

5 o’clock
Originally uploaded by My Symbiosis.

 “Many of the great achievements of the world were accomplished by tired and discouraged men who kept on working.”

I’m long past the point of exhaustion today … and absolutely, ready in need of a break.. so today’s entry, is short & sweet* it’s my entry in the Unconscious Mutterings Free Association meme for this week.. I enjoy little exercises like this, they always seem to awaken some sort of creative spirit within me.

* Bet ya didn’t think it was possible with me did ya?

Unconscious Mutterings Week # 170

  1. Represent :: Self
  2. Mumbling :: Men
  3. Meetup :: .com
  4. Tantalizing :: Aroma
  5. Fake :: Eyelashes
  6. Dale :: Evans
  7. Deny :: Rights
  8. Calories :: Count
  9. Roll :: Sesame
  10. 44 :: Bottles of Beer on The Wall

Now, Wasn’t that exciting?

  “When we are tired, we are attacked by ideas we conquered long ago”
Friedrich Nietzsche

‘Til tomorrow – Chrysti

Five Things .. 5’s ..

 Five's ..

1. One Digit / 5, 2. Hooked on fli..r, 3. One Digit / 5, 4. Almost blue
5. Here lies number 5, 6. Cinco, 7. Cell 5, 8. 5 – delicatessen
9. White 5 on Orange Dumpster, 10. guess where nyc, 11. 5, 12. give me
13. Untitled, 14. Travel Bug #5, 15. Five, 16. five

Why the 5 Montage You Ask? 

Well, The oh so talented Deryn Mentock Tagged me …

So I’ll try to give this a go … Really, I’m pretty Boring..
(Think i’d tell ya the exciting stuff?)

5 items in my fridge

  1. Starbucks Venti Iced Skim Mocha
  2. Sugar Free Tapioca Pudding
  3. Diet Arizona Ginseng & Honey Iced Green Tea
  4. String Cheese
  5. Parkay Spray Butter (so it’s not real butter)

5 Items in my closet

  1. Paint Covered T-Shirts & Sweats
  2. A Pile of Clothes to Cut into Fabric
  3. Vintage Ponchos
  4. A Size 4 Sundress I’d kill to fit in again
  5. Lotsa Old Purses & Handbags

5 Items in my Purse

  1. A Bottle Of Hydrocodone (Toothache)
  2. 10 Kinds of Fun Lip Balms/Glosses
  3. A Shoe Shine Sponge
  4. Victoria Secret Corset Shaped Mints
  5. My Wallet

5 Items in My Car

  1. I
  2. Don’t
  3. Have
  4. A
  5. Car !!

5 People I Tag

  1. Carmen aka Gyspy Froggie
  2. Chel
  3. AmyMa (Time to update that blog girl!)
  4. Lisa Carney
  5. Art Junk Girl

” He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes;
he who does not ask a question remains a fool forever “

I Could High 5 Y’all… But I’m really not THAT lame.. ( Ok so maybe I am…)

^5’s to All… Chrysti