Monday, 31 July 2017
Earth Angel Tinnitus : An Holistic Arts Mentoring Course for those living with Tinnitus & Hyperacusis
Living with my hearing loss is one thing, but living with severe tinnitus and hyperacusis are another. The constant noises in my head and the distortion of sounds within that range, have at times, pushed me so close to the edge that I have felt as if I were losing my sense of self.
On New Year's Eve, in a tiny temple on the hills of the West Wales countryside, I had nothing short of a spiritual awakening that turned my soul around.
I awoke New Year's Day fully committed to dedicating myself to devising a healing practice for my tinnitus and hyperacusis and what's more, that once I was well enough, I would share this practice with others and raise awareness of the condition.
And it fills my heart with love that I am now so close to finishing my first Holistic Arts Course. I have designed it specifically to Mentor others with Tinnitus based on the healing practice that has saved me and given me back my life from tinnitus & hyperacusis.
It will be available soon on CD or as a Download. I am just finishing the design work for the packaging.
Helping others pull themselves back from the same brink that I found myself teetering on, feels so right.
If you would like more details of my work you can pop over to my website or look me up on facebook. All love to you.
Saturday, 29 July 2017
If you read my last blog post, you'll understand why I was inspired to start writing a story about my beautiful rag doll today.
Here she is before she retired from storytelling in schools.
Thing is, as a storyteller, I find it easy to make the words reach out to people through spoken word. I have been doing it for years, it trips off the tongue but I can no longer go into schools since my hearing conditions. In response, I am trying to capture the thrill of storytelling in written word. But once typed, my stories lose something and I get really despondent about the piece.
A parcel came today, wrapped in lovey brown paper, so I decided to experiment with writing the story on this more interesting medium.
I am not sure why, but knelt on my slate kitchen floor, writing onto recycled brown paper captivated me, excited me.
I need to find a way that my story books become cornfields filled with poppies rather than cages for words. If you have any suggestions or advice, I'd love to hear from you. Thanks.
Friday, 28 July 2017
This is Rhianon. She is spelt wrong but that's ok. She was named by a little girl with special needs for whom this spelling was completely right and if it was right for her, it was right for Rhianon and I.
She has been touring schools with me for many years. I decided that since I am unable to go into school, she should be given a new life and carry on having fun without me. I didn't want to hold her back now that I need Quiet Space.
So, I sat her in the window and put her on my facebook page. Lo, a wonderful friend and fellow storyteller fell in love with her. A perfect re-homing.
So today, I got the bubble wrap and the scissors, the brown paper and cellotape. I gave her one last hug before wrapping her up and sending her on ... but she would not let go. She held me so tightly that I cried. She and I remembered all the wonderful times we have had together. Then she told me that actually, she didn't want to leave. She had been having a wonderful time as Quiet Space and wants to stay and write stories with me.
Off course, in reality, she said nothing, but she didn't need to because sometimes, love needs no words.
Rhianon doesn't sit in the window anymore. She sits with me, weaving wool and penning poems.
Thursday, 27 July 2017
One of the most wonderful things about keeping still and quiet at my studio has been the joy of accepting the flow of whatever is to be.
Growing up, we are taught that if we want something, we have to make it happen but I am learning this just isn't true.
All the time we spend on making things happen (or thinking that we are) perhaps we miss the wonderful opportunities that would have presented themselves.
Take today as an example. My dear friends Jeni and Ali came to visit me. They were coming to pick up some things that they had bought from Quiet Space. Then they said they wanted to chat to me about their website.
I first met Jeni at a stained glass workshop at Cariad Glass in Llandysul and we hit it off straight away. It was a truly wonderful day and we stayed friends ever since.
Jeni came to me for Sound Healing in my studio and the vibrations resonated very deeply with her. She decided to train as a Sound Healer herself and this has opened up her heart to stepping into her full power as a healer.
Jeni and her partner Ali have a beautiful farm, and slowly, rather than offering holiday accommodation in their cottages, they have moved towards creating healing / recovery retreats. I have been on one of their retreats myself and it was nothing short of transforming.
Since accepting fully, this wonderful pathway, they feel the desire to transition with their whole hearts, stepping fully into healing.I am so utterly happy for them. I love the Rumi poem with the premise 'What you seek, is seeking you' As if Mother nature is saying, 'Thank Goodness, I put that desire in you and at last you are stepping into it.' I truly feel that Planet Earth is smiling at their decision.
Gorswyld Farm has a a beautiful chapel, wonderful land, labyrinths, it's more like a little rural village than holiday homes ... a very special energy indeed, filled with so much love. Jeni has set up her breathtaking gong studio. You can feel the vibration of the space before you even enter the room.
And what is even more exciting for me is that Jeni and Ali have asked me to work with them to design their new website for this wonderfully holistic venture, so I will get to play a small part in their healing adventure.
If you had asked me this morning, would you like a contract making a website for beautiful people, helping them to realise their dream of offering holistic retreats, to offer wonderful healing to kindred spirits and the planet, I would have fallen off my chair. I was so moved that I just held them both closely and cried.
When my contract finished as Creative Digital Developer for the Storytelling for Health International Conference, where I designed the website for the storytelling projects, www.stories-for-change.weebly.com my friends told me to start advertising to find a new website design contract but I knew it was time to invest in Quiet Space and trusted the Universe to sort out the rest. And she has ... there is such a learning to be had from peaceful stillness.
Wednesday, 26 July 2017
One of the most difficult things since having severe tinnitus and hyperacusis with my hearing loss, is my ability to concentrate for long periods of time. It can be very distracting having a constant cacophony of tones going on in one's head. I have gotten round this by stopping regularly while writing and finger knitting to clear my head with my tactile mantra ... but it is stopping the flow I am used to when writing. Then I came up with a plan.
I don't know why it didn't dawn on me before because I have collected likely 1000's of stories in my lifetime, editing recordings and digital films for community based projects.
So, I decided to start recording my quiet pathway in the style of a children's story ...
'In our village, just opposite the bus stop, behind a large trough of wild flowers that generously spill summer fragance for those passing by, there is a corner shop. It is not an ordinary corner shop for inside, sits and old woman who spends her days weaving wool and penning poems ... '
However, when I came to type up the story from my recorded spoken word, it was as if I had hit a block. Then another idea came to me.
A friend of a friend (who I won't mention just yet as I need to make sure she wouldn't mind being in my blog) came to visit me. She has increasingly struggled with her tinnitus. She has worked in primary education all her life. Like I did, she is finding is increasingly difficult to manage her tinnitus in this environment and is looking for new ways of working for the future. She had thought of editing because she has an English Degree and loves books.
I contacted her and asked if she would like us to help each other, where I would be her first editing job, to trial and see if it is something she could do as a alternative career.
Today, I sent her the first short story in a series entitled Quiet Space, recorded in my Quiet Space Studio.
I love that 2 women coming to terms with tinnitus and new ways of being, have come together with their strengths to find a solution.
And I share this with you to help you think about ways you might collaborate with others to become re-empowered should the wind have been knocked out of your sails, in the way that it has mine. But with no wind, it is time to sit still and enjoy the sun, to wonder at the depth of the ocean and make friends with a new type of lifestyle.
Monday, 24 July 2017
Continuing Research & Development for my book & exhibition later this year, after a day at Quiet Space Studio, I immersed myself in The Beauty of Decay.
and I didn't have to look very far. Just around the corner from my studio, I found Mother Nature's green fingers, reaching into the darkest places ...
and bringing them back to life.
It lifts my soul to witness such perseverance against all odds. From the tiny cracks, she reaches out her tentacles.
When I am mindful to note the courage of new growth, I am totally inspired to carry on trusting my pathway.
Sunday, 23 July 2017
So excited to have joined the team at Neal's Yard Remedies. I am already using their essential oils for my aroma friendship bracelets, finding their nature based products much more within my price range and yet still high end quality, 100% pure, as well as organically and ethically grown.
Quiet Space will now stock Neal's Yard products, running essential oil sessions with their products, taking orders and holding a Pop Up Apothecary, offering the opportunity for friends & visitors to make their own range of beauty product, blending Neal's Yard products and finding out all about the benefits of essential oils.
And it's all down to this lovely person, Senior Consultant, Isabella Rossi, who drove all the way to Quiet Space to see me with her basket of beautiful goodies.
Neal's Yard is nature in a jar, offering us a way to gift ourselves small actions of love because we deserve to smell wonderful and feel the healing benefits of organic, natural care.
They have even given me my own Neal's Yard Website to share with you ... Just click HERE
Saturday, 22 July 2017
I know it seems like such a small thing, but yesterday I took delivery of my new little cards for my friendship bracelets and it really has made my aching heart sing.
To be honest, it's been a bit of a tough week. My hyperacusis kicked in really badly 2 days ago. It is even difficult to type today as the sound of the keys are amplified so loud. The tough thing is there is nothing I can do about it other than be still and trust that it will calm down again. I have had to take out my hearing aid as it is making it worse. Even though I feel like the lights have been turned off, I just have to breathe and accept that this pathway is up and down with ebb and flow.
Meanwhile, the postman turns up with my little envelope seals and it makes me smile so much that it doesn't matter that everything is distorting in my head.
Holistic creativity is the key to living life with a smile, even when smiling is at its' furthest from your heart.
Friday, 21 July 2017
One of the unexpected things that has happened since opening Quiet Space Studio is that my beautiful friends, have gifted me some very lovely wool. I wondered how I could repay this kindness.
I decided to make 6 bracelets and offer them on my facebook page to my friends asking them to nominate someone that they felt would really benefit from receiving a surprise friendship bracelet made with love, weaving a wider circle of friendship.
I also had a look through my facebook feed and where I could see a little sadness or loss, I wrote to the person & asked them if they would like to receive a Circle of Friendship Bracelet.
The response has been so heart warming. It really does seem to touch people's hearts.
Small actions of love have been the key to my own healing and now I feel strong enough to share that love in just a small way, to help others.
Wherever you are and whatever you are up to today, know that you are loved. We are dolphins in the same ocean.
Thursday, 20 July 2017
Quiet Space Studio is very happy to welcome Rubbish Re-invented, the creative concept of Lin Williams. All of her work is made from recycled carrier bags.
According to bigfatbags.co.uk, it is estimated that One Trillion carrier bags are made and distributed globally on average per year. A year's worth of carrier bags will take 1000 years to de-compose.
That's why I love Lin's recycling craft. Not only is it beautiful, she is also helping to save the planet.
Lin will be resident at Quiet Space for the next month. She has bags, purses of various sizes and belts. Feel free to pop in and have a look.
Monday, 17 July 2017
I am so pleased to have launched my new 'Postcards from Llandysul' Range today. The first 2 postcards are 'Buttercups by the Teifi' & ''Ceredigion Cornfields'.
I made the original pictures with local wild pressed flowers. Then I photographed my work and sprinkled some magic, to make them into postcards & pens.
Postcards from LLandysul will be available soon online but for now, they are available in Quiet Space Studio or my facebook page.
Because it's the little things that count ...
Friday, 14 July 2017
About 5 years ago, a dear friend of mine, Miranda Betts, had a Women's Day Celebration on the beach in New Quay. This is where I met Jet. Jet and I hit it off so we became friends on facebook afterwards, and though we have never met again, we have stayed in touch, finding that we follow similar creative journeys.
A couple of days ago, Jet had posted on her facebook about some lovely new paints that she had acquired. They were intense dye based colours, so I asked her to do some testers for us to see on facebook, which she did. I didn't for one minute, think that I would be trying them out in the flesh.
Turns out that Jet travelled down from Nottingham to stay with a friend not far from Quiet Space Studio, so she came late afternoon with her friend and the rather exciting paints.
I had some lovely watercolour blank postcards so Jet, her friend, Fiona, who was still at Quiet Space and myself, all sat quietly painting together. It was so lovely to be with others in this quiet way.
I did a poetry reading for them, my 3rd one today. It's such good practice for me and I am finding it very healing. I couldn't even read through a whole poem 2 weeks ago without losing my thread but the more I practice, the more I am feeling my flow again. I can sense myself healing. Baby steps.
What a wonderful day, filled with so much friendship that one can't help but feel uplifted.
My dear friend, Fiona Winter, visited me today at Quiet Space Studio. Fiona is a dancer. She is the Director of Energy Moves and teaches Nia. She is also the most incredible energy worker.
She asked me to take some photographs for her website and marketing. I love taking photographs. I only use my telephone camera but I find it offers me a flexibility. For this type of shoot I do quite a bit of work in terms of capturing personality & learning about a person's angles. I should add that there is no editing on these shots. They are authentic, real and of the actual moment, not a touched up version of it. That felt important in capturing Fiona.
After Fiona had asked me about doing the shoot, I scrolled through her existing photographs on facebook to study how we could reach the petite yet mighty Fiona: The naughty yet sensitive and empathic Fiona. The wise yet youthful.
The first part of the shoot, I took 50 or more shots of her at different angles whilst telling me a story. This way I can capture movement and enigma, a person's flow. We studied these shots together to discuss the angles that best capture her on camera. We then went to try these out against a backdrop that represents the spirit of Fiona.
Energy Moves is fluid and constant like the river, evergreen like the ivy, ever changing yet the same, like the sky ... I took Fiona to a place on the Teifi River where Heron's come to land. I go there a lot to watch them nest. With her winged scarf, it seemed the perfect location, it has everything that is Fiona. The Teifi has been inhabited since before time, it is ancient and wise, beautiful and powerful, it can appear light yet is deep and flooding.
And this shot below is my Fiona, my darling friend. I choose it because it's all about the depth and smile of her eyes.
What a wonderful afternoon at Heron's Landing, where grown ups can play as if they were still children, which off course, we are.