Grief. Bucket Lists. Legacies.

Bernadettes Bucket List

I suppose that’s natural, considering that the revolving door called cancer caught me in its spin before leaving the hospital where Ray’s last battle was fought, that I find myself thinking about bucket lists these days.

Honestly, Ray was the bucket list master in our marriage. All I had to do was ride on the coattails of his. Their content so often captured my interest that they easily found their way onto our mutual list. If you like reading my messy musings, you can thank him for that. Were it not for his giving me a copy of The Artist’s Way, I would not be here today. (His bucket list included our creative spirits playing together.)

Not that I am blasé about this gift called life or this planet called earth or any creative endeavor inspired by our Creator, but close friends will tell you that – though I enjoy each day – a Bernadette who casts far into the future with her personal wishes is a rare sighting.

But making decisions on cancer treatment does funny things to one’s perspective. This mastectomy-stand-in for my breast brings a lot to surface about life-cuts that speak to life-noun, living-verb conversions.

For the first time in my life, I want to come up with a list all my own but am a bit stumped when it comes to getting jazzed about world-stuff – like parachuting or bungee jumping or kissing the Blarney Stone. Okay, wouldn’t mind the Blarney Stone thing – as that is in the land of my ancestors – but I would not be restless on my deathbed not having done that.

So, I guess that’s my starting point. What would leave me restless on my deathbed? I know. A morbid place to begin but, hey, it leads to an interesting question and maybe points to my challenge in making bucket lists. I might be looking in the wrong place for what fuels me. Read more

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The Only New Year’s Resolution You’ll Ever Need

The Only New Year's Resolution You'll Ever Need

The Only New Year's Resolution You'll Ever Need

It’s that time again, and I am offering you the only New Year’s resolution you will ever need to make.

Live your life like you mean it.

Yep. That’s it. Resolve to live your life like you really mean it.

Don’t wait to mean it when you fall in love. When you’re out of school. When you have money. When the kids are grown. When your hand is forced by age, or disease, or death. Don’t wait to live your life like you mean it when challenged with some outside circumstance that suddenly opens your eyes. (Like we usually do.) And certainly don’t live your life like you mean it because I told you to.

YOU are the meaning-maker in your life so live your life like you mean it – the way you mean to live it.

Make eye contact every morning with that you looking back in that mirror and mean it, even if just for a moment. Make eye contact with everyone you meet, every day, and mean it. Not as a series of foreheads and noses and lips and ears. Look life in the eye, and all the other folks that show up with you each day, like you mean it. And, when you do, pay attention. You just might be surprised at all that you can be and do and feel.

Put this locomotive at the head of the train. Don’t lead with cabooses. (As cute as they look, save them for wishes.) If you put this resolution up front, all the other desires, intentions, determinations – and even wishes – will hook up and follow at their appropriate time. Read more

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Muse Fusions Wrap Recipes for Low-Stress, Low-Impact Holiday Gifts

Muse Fusions Gift Portfolio Wrap

Muse Fusions Gift Portfolio Wrap

Here are some creative holiday ideas that are gentle on the environment as well as the spirit!

Remember how Grandma
used to press and save wrapping paper? Start your own tradition of “re-use.” Wrap presents in last year’s calendar, old posters, maps, coloring book pages, sheet music, blueprints, and pieces of old quilts or embroidered linens. Or my favorite – shopping bags! (As you can see I have a Trader Joe’s theme going.)

Use strips of fabric and yarn as ties. Old costume jewelry, Christmas ornaments, fresh flowers, pine cones, and netting for bows. Make gift tags from last year’s Christmas cards.

Silk drawstring bags with beaded tassels can hold all kinds of goodies and be used by the recipient the next season for their gift-wrapping. The year’s recipient can toss in a “fortune cookie” wish as they pass it on. What fun you can have watching those fortunes grow within your circle of family and friends!

Take stocking stuffers beyond the fireplace mantel. Come up with gift-wrapping pairs. In other words, wrap a gift with a gift. Put kitchenware in a breadbasket, a gift card in a picture frame. Let a necklace and earrings adorn a plush teddy bear. Read more

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Moondancing with Cindy Blosser Winfrey of CL Winfrey

Moondancing Interview with Cindy Blosser Winfrey

Moondancing Interview with Cindy Blosser Winfrey

Today, as part of The Messy Room Moondancing Muse Series, we are dancing to the moon and back with artist, adventurer, and creative collaborator, Cindy Blosser Winfrey of CL Winfrey, artist the Facebook page where her “Joyful Soul Sparks from the Heartland” – and co-owner of Twin Sis Creations – the Etsy shop she shares with her twin sister, Cheryl. She is also April’s  facilitating muse in A Mused Community’s 2016 Creativity Challenges (they are using my book, Moondancing, as a guide) as well as a contributing muse for Muses of Art & Soul on Facebook.

Cindy enjoys using many different mediums to get her message of love out into this world and has learned that the most amazing way to produce art is to give your inner child permission to come out and play. To allow yourself to make a beautiful mess! So, before this messy room gets any messier, lets jump in and find out what makes this muse tick. Read more

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MoonDancing with Michelle Quesada of Michelle Quesada Art

Michelle Quesada Art Moondancing Interview Compassionate Mother

Today, as part of The Messy Room Moondancing Muse Series, we are dancing to the moon and back with artist and visionary, Michelle Quesada of Michelle Quesada Art, Mused, Muses of Art & Soul, A Mused Community Group and A Mused Community Group Creativity Challenges on Facebook. As a social worker by day and artist by night, Michelle is one busy muse on a mission of encouraging others to tap into their creativity as self-care. She believes there is a muse for each of us.

In 2016, Michelle and her fellow muse instigators – I mean collaborators – will show you how to find and work with your muse while learning to manifest your creative goals with the moon cycles. (Can you guess why I am tapping happy here? Yep. They are using my book, Moondancing!)

So, get comfy while we get to know a little about what makes this muse tick.

Okay, Michelle, lets get started with a quick warm-up …
Do you make your bed in the morning?
Almost never!

What is your favorite highway or karaoke song?
Love Shack by The B52s.

What are you wearing right now?
My most comfortable sweats and T-shirt.

What’s the title of your autobiography?
Seeking Beauty.

If you could dance under the moon anywhere in the world where would that be and what would you wear?
In Glastonbury, England. A long, flowing dress with a crown of flowers.

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