Friday, January 29, 2010


The illustration is one I did a couple of years ago. I copied it from a pic I saw on one of my favourite websites. Note Couture in the Carrie collection. Wonderful stationary I highly recommend it. I don't know who the artist is but I love this style. I find it so easy to draw and it's a type of meditation in itself (in a way). Hence I have a note pad full of these little doodles.

I've been trying to meditate every day since my last meditation lesson almost a week ago. Our "homework" was to meditate for 15 minutes a day and to practice patience with anything that irks us. Seeing as I live with a man who is nothing but irksome this has been quite some challenge. At first I tried not to get miffed at anything for an hour. Just an hour, and then the plan was to extend it a little each day. I lasted 3 days before I forgot about it altogether. At the end of each day I realised "Dang, I forgot to practice patience".

Then of course I have the problem with getting impatient with meditation. It's not the actual meditation that I have difficulty with, in fact I rather like the concept. It's the trying to get my manic mind to be still and to focus on my breathing that's the problem. And I'm not even thinking of anything important. "Empty my mind. Relax. Breath in breath out breath in breath out I wonder if I'll make roast chicken tonight - breath in breath out I really enjoyed that episode of The Tudors last night I wonder if IQ has recorded any more yet - breath in breath out I can't believe what that SOB barked at me today, I hope his computer blows up - breath in breath out...................."and so it goes on. I have managed to last ohhhhhh about 9 minutes before giving up in utter frustration.

I know - I'll practice patience at my lack of discipline to meditate. Thank heavens my next lesson is tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Australia Day shopping

I don't normally go for the traditional shrimp throwing on barbie and drink yourself stupid fun and games on Australia Day. It gets a little old after a while. I prefer to shop. And so we did. Some pretty scarfs for the Winter months ahead and some fun kitchen utensils for the gourmet meals I'm going to make. Well that's the plan.
We went to the newly refurbished Birkenhead Point outlet mall. You may remember me mentioning it here. It looks fantastic and the view over the water at the end is fabulous.
Yes I do realise it's looking a tad empty but being a public holiday not all the shops were open. All the more for me I say.
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Saturday, January 23, 2010

Beginning again in 2010.

Picture taken on New Years Eve in Manly

I've been away a while. I didn't really go anywhere (except for 3 days in Forster) I just needed to stop the world for a short while. It was partly laziness, part getting ready for the onslaught of houseguests over Christmas, but mostly coming to terms with the fact that I was about to experience my first Christmas without my mother. I felt grief of course when she first passed away, but it turned back and slammed me full in the face about mid November. Memories of Christmas as a child returned to haunt me as I watched everyone else prepare for what is usually my favourite time of the year. I kept fighting back tears as I put up decorations and trimmed the tree with my own child as my mum had done with me for so many years. Too soon, too soon.

I crawled out from under my rock to watch the new year in and decided enough. I need to stop pretending all was ok as I had done all year. I need to live again. Mum would want it that way. But first I need to heal. I had been going to a grief councellor for about 6 months but felt no better. I need to do this my way.

I took a book away with me when we went to Forster. I wanted to read something that would help me, something with meaning. "I know I saw a pocket book of Buddhism here somewhere" I thought to myself as we were packing. I found a small book called The Essence Of Happiness - A Guidebook for Living by the Dalai Lama and Dr Howard Cutler. Perfect. I take in my handbag and open it up the first night we were there. Inside the front cover is an inscription from my sister. She had given it to me for my birthday back in 2001 and I said "ummmm thanks....", put it on the bookshelf and promptly forgot it!

"Hope this book brings many insights" she wrote. Thanks sis you came through for me once again. I was ignorant and didn't appreciate the book then, but boy do I appreciate it now! I devoured it in no time and filled the poor little thing with post-it notes. I wanted to know more and decided I needed to learn how to meditate.

And then God created Google.....................

Thank heaven for the internet. I searched meditation courses in my area and found - ta da - Meditation & Buddhism with drop-in meditation classes. Double perfect. Starting this weekend. Triple perfect. So after I have a mini panic attack about finding parking in Mona Vale (I hate parking in Mona Vale) I make it on time (a little early actually) and try to quietly remain in the background until the class starts. The topic for the first few weeks is "change your mind - change your life" and is about finding happiness from within you and not seeking happiness from external sources.

I bounced out. And realised that parking in Mona Vale is no big issue really.