la fin.

After a bit of discussion, we have decided to end this blog journey.  Heading into the last crucial weeks of TAW during the height of the holiday season would be a crazy-making expedition for all of us.  We encourage you to continue on through the book at your own pace.  Should any of you wish for a “buddy” to email with about this journey, feel free to post on the Facebook page.  Thanks to those who have participated so far.

May all your creative dreams come true,

Rebecca and Karen Beth

Creativity occurs in the moment, and in the moment we are timeless. {Julia Cameron}

Week 3 Check-In.

-1- How many days this week did you do your morning pages?  How was the experience for you?  If you skipped a day, why did you skip it?

The universe will reward you for taking risks on its behalf.  ~ Shakti Gawain

Desire, ask, believe, receive.  ~ Stella Terrill Mann

-2- Did you do your artist date this week?  What did you do?  How did it feel?

Genuine beginnings begin within us, even when they are brought to our attention by external opportunities.  ~ William Bridges

We will discover the nature of our particular genius when we stop trying to conform to our own or to other peoples’ models, learn to be ourselves, and allow our natural channels to open.  ~ Shakti Gawain

-3- Did you experience any synchronicity this week?  What was it? 

Since you are like no other being ever created since the beginning of time, you are incomparable.  ~ Brenda Ueland

I have made my world and it is a much better world than I ever saw outside.
~ Louise Nevelson

-4- Were there any other issues this week that you consider significant for your recovery?  Describe them.

There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening, that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique.  And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and will be lost.
~ Martha Graham 

It’s  Halloween!!  What did you do this week or weekend to “treat” yourself?  Did you try the list for the weekend of needs and wants?  Did you challenge your creativity in anyway for Halloween?

I had trick-or-treaters for the first time ever last night (our neighborhood did Halloween on the 30th).  I recently moved into a house on a busy street and was so excited to have little goblins and ghouls to my door.  I was stocked up on candy but realized at the last minute that I needed a costume to answer the door in.  So, I went through my wardrobe and pulled together a rather cute “gypsy” costume.  I dressed my dog as Elle from Legally Blonde (pink sweater and she is blonde) and my black cat went as a… black cat.  We had a great time and it was such fun using what I had. 

Today I have been blaring Christmas music and cooking all day.  Sweet solitary bliss.

P.S.  I did eight of my fourteen need / want weekend list items!



I love the section on growth because it encourages us to pamper ourselves, to take time for ourselves, to make certain that we are treating ourselves well.

As an “extreme self-care” enthusiast, I love all these things.

At the start of every weekend, I take out my journal and I make two columns.  One column is a list of all the things I “NEED” to do on the weekend and the other column is a list of all the things I “WANT” to do on the weekend.  I love being productive and getting things done but also know that I need to cater some to my fun, creative side so this method works for me.

The things I “NEED” to do are normally things like laundry, clean kitchen, weed plants, rake.  The things I “WANT” to do are things like cook a pot of soup from scratch, sit at the park with my journal, go horseback riding, go to a matinée of a movie I’ve been wanting to see.

I normally make these lists pretty long – twenty or so items per column.  I never get them all done but I have the things written down that I need to do – the things that I will feel bad at the end of the weekend if I haven’t done – and the things I want to do – those things that will really feed my soul and make me feel like I’ve spent time in a special way.

So, how does this relate to self-care and growth?  By making these lists, I’m insuring that I do things I need to do but also that I want to do.  As many of you, I work Monday – Friday so my weekend time is sacred.  I want to make the most of it.  This allows me to grow and be more creative.

Lists aren’t for everyone, I know, and in some ways, they do seem a bit uptight.  But, I like having it all written out in my journal and it helps my spirits unbelievably.

*** How do you balance need with want?  What things do you do to show kindness to yourself?  What will you do this very weekend?

Hey everyone! It’s me, Rebecca.

I am an expert on shame.

When I was a kid, my sister and I recorded ourselves singing on a tape recorder. Our mom walked by and stopped to listen, then she asked what that awful sound was in the background. That awful sound was me, Friends. Ouch.

I quit singing.

A few years later, I messed up royally during a piano recital. The other kids got hugs and roses from their parents. I didn’t. My parents walked me out in dead silence.

I quit playing piano.

When I was a teenager, I took my art portfolio to an interview for a summer art camp. The two reviewers started making jokes about one of my pieces.

I quit painting.

For years, I thought I quit those things out of perfectionism, but that wasn’t it at all. I just couldn’t take the shaming.

There’s a great quote in the book: “Shame is retriggered in us as adults because our internal artist is always our creative child.”

Now, when I read about those three shaming incidents I mentioned above, my instinct is to protect that kid! To get angry at those people and encourage her to keep going.

Since the first time I read TAW, I’ve learned to protect myself from shaming by following one rule: I share my creative life (new projects, ideas, works in progress) only with people I KNOW will be supportive. I let everyone else in when I’m ready.

For example, I have one friend who’s a troubleshooter. When you tell her about an idea, she points out the negatives. If I told her about a new idea for something creative, she would try to shame me into dropping it. So, I manage the situation by not telling her about projects until they’re done.

Instead of quitting things to avoid shaming, I’m doing the things I enjoy and nipping the shame in the bud.

That doesn’t mean criticism never comes my way. If you share what you do, you WILL get criticized. But now that I’m protecting that creative child in me, I can appreciate good criticism and let it make me better instead of being devastated by it.

Do you have a shame demon (a past devastating incident) that needs to be exorcised? Feel free to share it here, or let us know what you’re doing to deal with the fear of shame and move forward.

I {LOVE} Synchronicity.

“Answered prayers are scary.” {page 62}

Boy, she’s not kidding.

I’ve been immersed in “going green” for some time now.  I talk about it, try to live it, tell others, I even started a market in my community that is all about green, sustainable living.

So, it was a natural fit when I started thinking (and talking about) writing a “green” column in the local newspaper.  I talked about it for a good couple of months, wrote articles in my head, pondered what good messages I could get across, etc.

Then I pitched the idea to the editor of the local newspaper.

And he accepted.


My initial feeling was elation.  However, that only lasted a few minutes until fear took over.  I was downright scared.  Yes, I knew this stuff and I love researching and learning more but I kept thinking, “I’m in over my head.  What if I really can’t do this?”

This answered prayer does imply responsibility for me and sometimes it does seem much easier and more fun to daydream about what things might be like if they happened.  But, that’s the thing about daydreaming:  If you think about it, plan for it, act like it is going to happen, it usually does.


Of course, in this case, I actually pitched the idea to the editor but I fully believe that if the Universe had not wanted me to have the column, the editor would not have accepted.  And I believe that all the thought and energy I put into it beforehand made all the difference in the world.

I’ve said before that honing your sense of intuition and synchronicity makes even more synchronicity come about.  That is the absolute truth.  That’s why it is so important to jot down little notes when you notice moments of synchronicity.  Even little things… think of a metal flower and see if you don’t, within an hour or so, see some form or a metal flower.

Synchronicity is a powerful and beautiful thing when put to good use.  Quite honestly, it fascinates me and I get giddy with excitement when I see examples of it in my own life.

** Have you noticed any synchronicity in your life since starting this course?  Do you pay better attention now?

Week 2 Check-In.

  • How many days did you do your morning pages?  Are you starting to embrace this practice?  Any changes you’ve made to how Julia outlines morning pages?
  • What was your artist’s date?
  • Did you have any issues this week relating to the course?
  • Did you have any breakthroughs / discoveries?

If you have blogged about TAW, please share the link.

My Artist’s Date.

I had an Artist’s Date today.  Part of it was solo and part of it was with others.  I counted both parts as my Artist’s Date and really had a great day.

I went with some friends to a Renaissance Fair.  I had never been to one before so it was an interesting experience.  I saw some neat and very creative things.  Well, mostly neat and creative people.

This guy who did an amazing job of playing the “glass harmonica”.  Those are glasses with water and he played them beautifully.


A living statue.  (I think she was supposed to “bless” people; I didn’t get blessed.)

This guy.


They also had a LOT of vendors with a LOT of different things (some pertaining to Renaissance and some… well, NOT.)

I enjoyed this new experience and saw a lot of interesting things.

For the solo part of my Artist’s Date, I took $10 into the Goodwill and browsed around.  I found a few old dishes that will provide lots of great creative inspiration for my newfound love of cooking.

What did you do on your Artist’s Date this week?

Happy weekend,

Karen Beth  🙂

Last Chance Artist Date!

Hey, everyone. Rebecca here again.

Have you gone on your Artist Date this week?


I haven’t, either.

Isn’t it funny how something that sounds so fun can be so hard to prioritize? I wouldn’t break a date with my husband. I wouldn’t ditch a friend’s party or cancel a doctor’s appointment. But spending time alone, soaking in inspiration to do the things I love? Well, putting that off is as easy as skipping a workout – another thing I know can only do me good.

So, in the spirit of the famous last-chance workout on “The Biggest Loser,” I’m proposing a Last Chance Artist Date for this week!

Browse the books and magazines at a library or bookstore. Rent a movie. Go to a costume shop. See an art exhibit. Visit a fall festival, an art supply store, or craft shop. Pick a project to tackle, and run out for supplies.

I know, according to TAW, we should go on our Artist Date alone. But sometimes, that just doesn’t work out, especially on the weekends. Don’t let that stop you. Yes, we need to make time to be creative and seek out inspiration, but the occasional Artist Date with a date, friend or kids in tow is far better than no Artist Date at all.

What are you planning (or what did you do) for your Artist Date this week? There’s still time to get that Last Chance Artist Date in! Let’s go!!!

Hey, everyone! Rebecca here.

You know, I thought I had a handle on the things we’re covering in this chapter. I’d dealt with the poisonous playmates, the crazymakers and the skepticism. I don’t have a problem paying attention to the “small things.” I love the small things. I was in line to get an A++ in Week 2.

Then I got to the exercises.

Have you done any of the exercises yet?

Question 2 was an eye-opener: Where does your time go?

I thought I knew. I mean, I’m a freelance writer with a food blog. My top five activities would have to be writing, cooking, shooting photos, promoting my site, and planning future projects, right?

Well, I DO do all of those things, but not every day.

Nope, on a daily basis, one of my top five activities is wasting time on the Internet. Letting myself get sucked into checking e-mail, Facebook and Twitter. Reading articles and blog posts for HOURS.

I can’t be the only one who does this.

Then I got to question 8: List 10 changes you’d like to make for yourself, from the significant to the small.

No problem, right? But as I was writing my list, I started feeling really anxious. And as I started feeling really anxious, I really, really wanted to check my e-mail.

So, yes, I learned something about myself. I learned that I use my time online to numb myself to anxiety. I have anxiety, because I’m not making changes. I’m not making changes, because I’m online too much. It’s a vicious cycle.

Thanks, Julia.

Do I want to waste my time on mindless crap? NO! I have too many things I want to do! So now that I’m aware of what’s going on, I’m determined to break the cycle. I have my list of 10 tiny changes on a notecard, and I’m challenging myself to finish them before the end of the year. (I’ve already got the hallway taped up and ready to be painted!)

*** What about you? Have you learned anything from the exercises? Were you freaked out by seeing how you REALLY spend your time? Confess! ***

Continuing Week TWO

There’s a lot of info in Week 2 so we’ve decided to extend it for another week.  Everyone cool with that?

Okay then.

Balance is good, don’t you think?

The No. 7 Task at the back of Chapter 2 is a particularly good one.  We often favor one or two areas of our lives thereby neglecting others.  These six key areas are:

  • Spirituality
  • Exercise
  • Play
  • Work
  • Friends
  • Romance / Adventure

I’ve also read that there are in fact SEVEN, not six, key life areas.  These would be:

  • Spiritual
  • Intellectual
  • Psychological
  • Social
  • Professional
  • Recreational
  • Physical

Whichever list you tend toward, they are very similar. 

In order for your life to be harmonious and balanced, you need activity in and attention to each of these areas.  Do you have it?  In what areas are you lacking?  This exercise is great because it will not only help to enhance your creativity, it will enhance and add to your overall well-being and quality of life. 

Take this a bit further and make a short list of activities you can do in each area once or several times each week and do them.  Balance is good!