Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Oh Yes, You Can!

During a recent visit with my SoulStorm sisters in the Pacific North West, I heard myself describing my usual pattern of resistance, resistance, resistance…… fear-facing then FINALLY DOING whatever it is I’ve avoided. This is a long standing pattern, a game that I’ve perfected and it truly is entertaining because usually what I am avoiding is something that ends up being pretty darned cool. Often I amaze myself in the end. I may or may not ever return to the “feat” but the simple fact of “knowing” that I did something that I didn’t think I could is confidence inspiring. (It sometimes doesn’t take much…..!)

I shared with my sisters that I was gifted my Grandma Ruth’s sewing machine, which is super cool, but I don’t sew! It’s a beautiful piece because it was hers; I know she spend numerous hours crafting and creating. She made me the coolest Cabbage Patch-ish Kid, complete with her own clothes. I lovingly named the doll Patience Ranae (that probably says something right there!) Having the machine in my craft room was a wonderful connection to my grandmother, though I never planned on using it.

Then, one Halloween, a certainl little girl insisted on being Jessie The Cowgirl. Since she’s super tiny, no costumes fit her. I have the ability to come up with creative visions and solutions, the challenge is completing the details and steps to get to that vision. I tend to take short cuts, as many as I can get away with! I could see the “perfect” costume in my mind. I then went and found milk cow material, old pants, a brother’s white shirt, felt, fabric paint and glue. It all worked really well until the makeshift chaps fell off the pants.  Whoops! They were going to need stitches. Real stiches. And there sat the sewing machine. I swear it was grinning. I avoid situations that pose much of a challenge until I can’t avoid them anymore. This was no different. I sat down and under my mother-in-law’s tutoring I was able to whip out one cool costume! That was two years ago and I haven’t turned the machine on, but I know if I needed and/or wanted to, I could do it. At this time, I don’t have the drive or desire. Maybe it will come?!

This realization and pattern emerged when my sisters and I sat down to create dream catchers. Our gifted, gorgeous teacher, Rachael Rice, generously shared her support, guidance, suggestions and supplies and delicately lead her novices in the art of weaving a dream catcher. To be honest, I was pretty content on the bench, chatting with friends about Nine Star Ki and Feng Shui. Oh sure, I watched, in wonder and awe, as fellow sisters spun and circled their crafty goodness. I don’t remember who vocalized the invitation (thank you to whoever said, “Your turn Robyn, get down here!). Having shared the sewing machine story and recognizing that I’d put this off for as long as I could, it was time to jump in. I’d watched a video on making a dream catcher about a year ago and though it looked super cool, I avoided it. I prefer to learn in person due to my non-dominant hand (and brain?!?!) This made knitting, guitar and violin playing and anything with direction and motion a true challenge. I hear the words, I can watch videos, I can read the words, but something gets all combobbulated in my brain and what comes out…….is a gigantic mess! I’ll admit it’s easier to find an artist on who has honed her skills, I’m happy to pay her!

What ensued is the treasured piece shown above, my very own dream catcher.  It means a great deal to me, on so many levels. It represents the connection and synergy of amazing, powerful, gifted, talented, generous, FUN, beaming, light-filled women who support and inspire me.  It also symbolizes my willingness to stop, observe and shift habits, beliefs and patterns that no longer support me. It is a visual reminder that when it is time to stop and try something new, I know I’ll be just fine. Powerful dreams were woven in this piece, the fact that it was hand crafted amplifies this. I understand the magic of creation and why being an artist is an honor. In old times, when we were less inundated with careers, technology, and chore lists miles long, there was time for developing our special, unique talents. When the harvest was complete, when the tribe’s welfare was ensured, beings had time to specialize. Items weren’t bought with cash they were traded for, ensuring value, necessity, and aesthetic appreciation.  It’s been easy for me to become a mass consumer because my time, talents and energies were not invested in the creation of the goods I sought. I certainly have a deeper appreciation of what I am bringing into my space as well as a deeper level of reverence for artistic hands.

Much goodness is flowing in with the simple observation of my patterns and the recognition of opportunities that are presenting themselves to me. Simply saying “YES” to what’s here, taking that teeny, tiny step. Moving forward an inch at a time and learning oh so much in the process. It’s almost silly when I think of what pressure I was putting on myself by setting out to take leaps and bounds. I’m good with accelerated change but I’m better with the conscious, creative, organic process of enjoying the actual journal. It’s starting to make sense.

What are you saying “YES” to right now? What are you trying, experimenting or dipping a toe into? I’d love to hear and share your journey! 


  1. A.M.E.N. to paying the etsy gods of DIY stuff. I have been dipping my toe into that lately and I just don't quite get it. Usually it ends up costing just as much, taking a billion hours to do, and doesn't end up at all how I wanted it to! I have always wanted to learn how to sew, crochet, and quilt (my mom does all of them wonderfully) but for now I am going to be patient and wait for that season of my life to come around since right now my focus is on our almost walking son! I would like to learn how to do all of those things so I can put together cool costumes for my kids, I know I appreciated the talent when I was younger :)

  2. I don't get it either Amanda! There's a lot that I don't get to be perfectly honest and much of what I do attempt turns out at a 1st grade level (usually Pryce's concoctions look a lot better than mind!) I too appreciate the arts of sewing, crochet, and quilting yet those are all really challenging for me. Maybe that is why Grandma Ruth encouraged me to go outside and help my dad?!?!?!

    Yes, truly, your focus is on that adorable baby boy! You have plenty of time to perfect your art by the time he'll be wanting you to craft a costume :) and the great news is that you have an amazing teacher/Mama!

    I sure am glad to know I'm not the only one in the tippy canoe of the DIY projects! (I did just order blackboard contact paper.....that should be fun!)

  3. I am fueled by the appreciation and praise I receive and the satisfaction I feel when I gift my crafts and baked goods to friends and family. I never keep or make anything for myself though, probably because I don't give myself the same praise. I've started projects but I worry I'll hate the finished product so it stays tucked away in my craft room. Today on my lunch break I wandered around my favorite fabric store but instead of going to the familiar quilting section, I ventured to the foreign home decor section. Our master bathroom has some really ugly curtains and I cringe everytime I look at them. I found an awesome fabric and hopefully bought enough for the two windows but if all goes well, I'll be making curtains for our formal living room. Cross your fingers for me...I'll take pictures of the final product! Don't be afraid of the sewing machine, Robyn! I know once you sit down to it, you'll feel inspiration from Grandma Ruth's spirit!

    I also went skiing in Whitefish, MT for the first time last weekend! I've missed out on a lot of great opportunities because I was worried my inexperience held others back. To get over that fear this time, I signed up for lessons and by day 2 I was shredding the mountain and Joel was amazed! We're planning our next ski trip in a couple weeks and I can't wait to fine tune my new 'swoot' skills :)

    1. Carrie, that's AWESOME! I saw those curtains girl! WOW!!! I'm so in awe of your talents. I just wish we lived closer so we could share our ideas and offerings!

      I am so proud of you for skiing! I could love the sport but by the time I finally figure it out, it's time to go! Sounds like a great experience and I'll be sooo excited to hear about those SWOOT skills! I do want some pics too :)

      Thanks so much for the comment! I never know who reads the words and what resonates to it make me giddy when I see replies! Much love! RJ

  4. hI, I smile as I read about the feelings you have shared about the sewing machine! My mom-in-law has given me 2 I have given 1 away. The blog sparked a thought an interest in the art of sewing. My small step forward is to accept imperfection from myself, ok, maybe that is a big step (:. I have started with the house cleaning. In the past, I would start at one end, 3 rooms would be PERFECT, rest of the house not so much. Then I was out of steam and caring! Now I have a kitchen timer, when 20 min is up, I leave the room. It is good enough! It sounds simple enough,it is a change of a pattern I have grown accustomed! Hurray!

  5. Lucy! What great steps you share!!! I love the idea of using a timer and I hope that others will test this out. I am finding I am such an ALL OR NOTHING kind of person. For example I want the entire house perfect so I'll spend a solid week doing nothing but that (and then I want to make everyone go sleep in the camper so they don't mess it up again, hahahah!)

    These small steps have really helped shape this perspective and I am seeing the amount of pressure I tend to put on myself. My focus these days is much more about being in alignment and just listening, not even doing. In fact, I'd say I try to actually do only the things that must be done, does that make sense? And then every day build in something I really love, and that may mean sitting on my a** and reading a book, when I know there are 10 loads of laundry. My challenge is to be FULLY in the process and enjoy whatever it is that I am doing.

    Thanks so much for taking time to leave a comment, that means a lot of me! Love n hugs!!