Saturday, January 25, 2014

(Kind of) moved...

Time to try out that 'something new' I was thinking about.

I've moved my little creative venture over to here now:

 My new blog: note to [creative] self



The real life address is: notetocreativeself.blogspot.com

However, altered type isn't going away. I'm just not sure what to do with this place at the moment. Now that I've joined the fabulous Gateway Women community through Google+, I'm armed with Jody Day's life changing book, and I'm starting a whole new phase in my life (including a new blog) this place may lie dormant for a while... or I could be back here next week with a whole new piece of my 'Plan-B' mind to share.

Either way, change is good. It's scary and thrilling and very exciting.

Come and visit me at my new place (leave a comment even - show some love for the new blog in town!).


Sunday, January 19, 2014

It's the start of something new...

I've been thinking... about starting something new.

While I love where 'altered type' has taken me, I'm feeling the need to build a new blog. One that is just for fun. To share all of the snapshots of the creative life I've been carving out for myself over the past few years.

I remember a comment from someone late last year on a random blog, about needing to go forth and start "living the life" instead of keeping it all locked up in some kind of dream state. While I can't really articulate fully what that 'life' is for me, I've been making slow changes at home, and in my work day, and in the way I do things. And it's all pointing ... somewhere.

It's really just a thought for now, and I'm sure my obsessive compulsive nature will kick in and I will have a new blog setup by the end of the week (do not be surprised). I guess I'm after a little bit of separation between what this blog is about (my childless journey) and the new life that I crave. Or more specifically, the art, the images, the books, the journaling, the creative workshops... all the 'things' that I find to be exciting and a natural extension of me. It's that part of me that is emerging, the part that has been missing for a while.

I guess this little book here got me thinking...


I've been spending around 5-10 mins every day (okay, there was maybe a day or two that I missed) doing a little bit of journaling and colouring and messing about with inks and washi tape. And a little part of my brain has exploded, calling me to do more... make more.





When you wake up thinking about colors, paints and black ink... is that such a problem?



Art Journaling can be messy, and not always pretty, but that's why it's so enticing!

I guess it's time to start thinking about a name for this new creative space (any suggestions most welcome! :)  I'll still post here when I have something more personal to share. I've gained so much from other bloggers who have shared their experiences about childlessness and the conversation must continue, for everyone's sake.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Reflections on childlessness and healing

I am propped up in bed by a mountain of pillows, with a cup of tea and my laptop, and it's nearly 11am. It's kind of wonderful. It might have something to do with Jody Day's new book, 'Rocking the Life Unexpected' (see my last post).

I am in the mood to share my thoughts with the universe. Again.

Last night I worked through the first chapter and instead of pushing on to chapter two, I had a go at the suggested exercise: writing out 'my story' of how I came to be a woman without children.

And it wasn't short - nearly 2000 words. Quite a way over the suggested word count. There were just so many insights that kept coming to me as I wrote. And tears, of course.

You never 'get over' childlessness - but it is possible to heal around it. 
- Jody Day.

Writing out my story helped me realise a few things:

  • there was never a simple reason 'Why'. I actually discovered an enormous amount of variables that fit together to make up my story.
  • any wonder childlessness is so difficult to talk about! I filled two pages with just the facts. And this morning I remembered more, other things that I had never acknowledged as contributing to the story.
  • 'My story' is for me. Or for others who may need support. I no longer want to 'have an answer' for those who ask hurtful questions, are disrespectful or incapable of empathy.
  • 'My story' is a massive part of my life. I am learning to take what I need from it, grieve when I need to, and use it to make good decisions in the future.

While I don't want to rush on to the next chapter (even though I really, really want to keep reading!) I think I'll take a few days to let all of this sink in.



Friday, December 6, 2013

Rocking the life...

It's been seven months since I dusted off the Blogger keyboard.

I'm not sure why I'm visiting today. I'm supposed to be concentrating on a lecture about corporate writing; the lovely voice is talking to me through my computer speakers about 'keeping the audience in mind' and I found myself opening a new browser tab and creating a post here.

There's nothing special about today. Perhaps I just started thinking about 'my audience'. We all have one. And it changes on a daily basis, from the familiar to the unknown. There's my mother who lives a long-distance phone call away, and who I persuaded to buy a new Paperwhite Kindle (and I would convince you too if I could... it is just marvellous!) And there's my husband, who is pushing through another boring work day. And there's the unknown 20-or so people who used to read my little blog, and may see this new post pop up in their feed reader today. And probably wonder if I have anything interesting to share.

And I do.

This:

Jody Day's new book
{Image source: Gateway Women}


If you haven't heard about this revelation of a book, please go here now: Gateway Women

What a great cover design! It's funny, I've had a copy of the book since the middle of October. I've been busy reading other stuff - sure. But I also hesitated to start it because I wasn't sure I was ready to. 

While there's never an excellent time to be all confrontational with yourself, I kept thinking about starting it... and kept distracting myself with all the 'must reads' for work and Uni. But today is the day that I cracked the proverbial spine, had a meaningful tear or two in recognition of my own situation in the introductory story, and felt suddenly lighter. 

I felt like I had been missing my Tribe. As though I really do have one. 





Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Me Day

You read it right - Happy Me Day.

Because there are alternative lives being lived around the world that don't involve motherhood. I was going to declare a Happy Wives Day given the success of Husband's Day last year - but again, that only really works if you're focusing on your relationship status... and that's not as fun as thinking about what an awesome person you are, all on your own, without anyone else's validation. So today is all about Me. 

(If you are cringing right now or have some sort of issue with declaring yourself worthy of a whole day of celebration... perhaps this isn't the blog for you. Go and read my first ever blog post to get an idea what this blog is all about and perhaps gain some insight. And if you are all for celebrating your own 'Me' Day, then three hearty cheers to you too! You deserve it.)

So to celebrate, I went on a little shopping trip with my bestie (also celebrating Me Day) and after a syrupy pancake breakfast I picked up a few necessities for said-Day. 

Like these (only mine are navy blue with red and green dots, but I couldn't find an image on-line):

Spot gift box pj set

And Paramore's new self titled album:


On a side note, and with much unexpected synchronicity, I have just launched my first (ever) stop-motion animation on YouTube. Excitement! Go on, click here to watch. It's a 2 minute animation which just happens to involve the theme of 'Me Day' although it was wholly unintentional. - the actual theme is 'pleasure' (you will see how I inadvertently weaved in today's celebrations at the very end of the video). 

I have been working on this for the last two weeks for Uni - a very interesting learning curve involving cameras, lighting, unsteady tripods and miniature strips of paper text. It was seriously fun though, and it's my introduction to the wonder of stop motion. I can see loads of opportunities using paper craft in stop motion. But oh, the time involved! This one contains about 1256 photographs, all put together in the free software Windows Movie Maker with a lovely little ditty via opsound.org

And it is dedicated to all the 'Me's of the world... so enjoy. 




Saturday, May 11, 2013

For the love of reading

Here is how my morning panned out:

I woke up naturally before the alarm (no, I don't switch it off on Saturdays), made toast and tea, perched myself on the couch near the window with a blanket and my iPad, and haven't moved for three hours.

Bliss.

Most of the time was spent lingering on the Goodreads website, ogling lists that others have made of 'books about books' and adding too many of them to my 'to read' shelf. That, and listening to my dog snoring, and occasionally glancing out the window to see two Willie Wagtails (those tiny black and white birds that appear to be dressed in tails) dancing around the lemon tree.

I'm well aware that I should have been dressed by now and busy doing productive things, and that I don't have spare time to read books that aren't on my required reading list for Uni (in amongst my actual working life) but I'm ignoring all that. I'm reading anyway. I started last night and am in love again already.

With this: