Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Voice of the Feminine

A couple of weeks ago, I caught a few minutes of Gloria Steinem on Oprah, and though I was really only half watching, something she said really stuck with me. It stuck with me because it resonated with my soul and I have been greatly encouraged by her words. She said something to the effect that the last wave of feminism was trying to communicate that woman can be whatever they wanted to be. Something got lost in translation though. The point was not that women have to be everything, rather they can decide what they were meant to be and do that task with passion. Being super woman is not the ideal. Being able to choose one's own path is the ideal. Or something like that anyway.

So it has me thinking. The most powerful thing I have done in my life is to resign from the job of super woman and super mom. That is not where my power lies. No, my power lies in the truth that I was created equal and I can decide what I want to do with the time I spend here on earth. For too long, I allowed others to define me, to define my goals, to define the boundaries of my strength and power. The season of giving up my power has thankfully passed for me. Or at least it is beginning to pass. Now I understand that I choose how I define myself. I choose the path for me and can do so without apology. I choose to reside in and exercise my birth given right of personal empowerment.

I want to walk towards a simple living that flows out from who I am meant to be. I want to choose to make my work that which is not held in high regard far too often. I am shaping the characters of three amazing children. I am making myself available to the causes that I find important... volunteering in the public school system and in an amazing MOPS group. And yes I did go to college and pursue a degree for just this task.

I want to grow into a woman that doesn't need others to accept that choice, or even to understand it. But I want to learn expect respect from those I share my heart and my time with. Gratefully, I have an amazing support system. I am grateful for the village that has risen up to help me during this crucial time in my evolution. It is a great encouragement to have those who have already travelled that path, and to have others along side me as we travel the path together. I am grateful for the blogging world, the mother messaged boards I am a part of (albeit less frequented these days), and am especially grateful for the womeb I share my heart with in my daily life. My life is filled with simple abundance because of such blessing

Monday, November 24, 2008

Creation

The Christmas crafting has officially begun. I will try and show bits and pieces here and there.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

An opportunity to be mindful of Simplicity...

... Or in lay woman's terms, dh got laid off from his "secure" job last week.

I've gone through many emotions, since my husband gave me the news of the lay off...six weeks before Christmas. Fear, sadness, anger, worry, peace that we will be okay, and a oddly familiar excitement that something new is on the horizon for him. I do not earn an income for our family in this season of nurturing wee ones, but I believe my value to my family far outweighs any amount of money I could bring in right now. So I see it as my job to provide us with stability, good stewardship and creative financing... aka keeping our monthly living expenses to a bare minimum, while still making sure that we enjoy the abundance of our resources. So now is my opportunity to think creative about how to live lean in a time of societal economic turmoil and familial uncertainty.

We have worked hard to get out of debt and in the past five years we have gone from completely leveraged with short term and long term debt, to only having a mortgage and one car payment. We are still working on our savings, but we will be able to weather a storm for a bit. That work has already been done. We learned our lesson after the last time of economic turmoil. It was a very tough lesson, but it was so worth it. So now what?

Well, I don't exactly know. But I do know this. Last Thursday when we got the news, I turned to my laundered money stash, that was earmarked for a trip to Greece in 2010, and realized I have squirreled away at least $110-$150 dollars in the last five years. Just in the change from our pockets and any money that has found it's way through our laundary and into our clothes dryer... thus the name of the kitty... *The Laundered Money Stash".

So for this Christmas, it will be business as usual. We have been planning our way towards a smaller and mostly hand made christmas all year, and with what I have already stashed on the gift shelf, and the money I am currently counting out of the The Laundared Money Stash, we will have what we need to have a wonderful and abuntant holiday season.

Returning to a life of simplicity is really paying off for us. I am so grateful for my husband who works hard, and shares my goals for our family. I am grateful that I can rest in the truth that my needs have already been accounted for, and I can feel good that I am walking towards a lifestlye of simplicity, where we always use our resources consciously... in lean times and in feast times.

So in the coming weeks I am sure there will be posts here and there about our journey. I know that there are families everywhere, struggling with these realities, and rather than turn towards despair, I want to have a spirit of adventure.

Monday, November 17, 2008

SoCal Fires


SoCal Fires
Originally uploaded by poetic mama

This was a look at the Carbon Canyon Fire about two hours after it started. I took this picture from Garden Grove which is about 5-10 miles south west of the fire. This is actually shot towards the ocean.

This was a sad weekend for so many people, and my thoughts and prayers are with all who were affected by the fires

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Landscape Art


Oatman Az.
Originally uploaded by poetic mama

I think that I am not loving the idea of landscape photography. In the moment, the process was great fun, but my pictures are not exciting me. I think I need to add something to my process, because every picture feels flat as I am editing.

I know that I am new, and that everything takes time, but I want to be skilled right away. This is not the final verdict for me and landscapes... I'll keep trying, at least for a little while.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Getting Back to My Work


Oatman Az.
Originally uploaded by poetic mama

It is so easy for momma to delay my own dreams and goals. There is always something more pressing... but I don't like the message that sends to the family. I don't want my goals and aspirations to be considered secondary to everyone else's because I am the full time care giver. So I spent time away working on my homework last weekend, and it was truly relaxing. My sil and I shop the same way and take pictures the same way... and was great bonding time for us. It was great fun being me... the me that is not constantly attached, constantly needed, constantly moving.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Monday, November 3, 2008

Halloween Candids





What a wonderful day Halloween was for my Mickey Mouse, Spider Girl, and Obi Wan Kenobi... and for us all. Family, friends, parties, trick or treating. We had a very full day, but it was full of joy and laughter. Everything went off without a hitch and I have discoverd a new passion. I loved making Bubba's costume and altering Baby J's too. I am already planning for next year!