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Archive for August, 2012

This is a picture of a very large ‘Port Jackson Fig’ that sits in my local park. It is one of the few remaining trees that were part of a garden belonging to a family that settled here and had a home on the site. Unseen in this picture, around the other side of the trunk is a metal post, which has long-lost its purpose for being there, yet still remains. Solid, upright and buried in a bed of concrete.

The tree has had to adapt to it and the result is, that the base of the tree and its roots are moulding their way around this un-wanted, intrusion. Eventually the post may rust away,  break off, or a keen-eyed gardener may thoughtfully cut it away. If it is ignored though, there is a possibility that the tree may end up encasing all visual trace of it, the un-natural, un-welcome flaw remaining deep inside the trees system.

Our lives can sometimes be like that too. People around us may not necessarily see what is going on, but deep inside we may well be aware that there are parts of our lives, which we are growing around. Some of these situations, could become completely covered up, as we strive to work through them and accommodate their hold.

We all go through troubled times, where we can carry and bare the wounds of our past, but they do not have to define who we are today, or hinder our futures. Acceptance and forgiveness allows us to find an inner peace, where we can adapt to changing circumstances with wisdom and grace.

My desire is to grow older and wiser like this tree, by giving myself permission to be flexible and open to change.

© Sandie’s Snippets 2012

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From time to time, one of our writing group activities is to create a new word. It’s never easy to find the right combination of letters and have something that sounds reasonably plausible, but I came up with ‘Nocarmaritum’ . Once we had written the pronunciation and explanation, it had to be put into a short story.

Here goes……

Nocarmaritum.  Knock-ar-mar-it-um.   Night time musings of a ship on a vast ocean. Thought to aid relaxation and sleep.

 I had tossed and turned for hours attempting to fall asleep. Flexing my limbs and relaxing did nothing to bring slumber and my flock of sheep grew beyond the care of any shepherd.

On morning radio, I had recently heard about a new sleep theory called Nocarmaritum and it involved the vision of a sailing ship rolling on the oceans horizon.

Willing to give anything a go, I closed my eyes to see sails flapping with a gentle breeze, framed by a moonlit evening. Stars shone brightly and the rocking effect seemed to bring me a sense of calm.

All seemed to be going well, until my night-time imaginings took over and I swear I heard the words ‘Abandon ship’.

I don’t think this will ever be put into a dictionary, but it was a fun exercise to do and there was lots of laughter as we listened to all the other new words that had been created. You might like to give it a go too.

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Well I am up to week six on this experiment and there are some very unexpected changes to my everyday life.

Sleep has become the hero. Instead of struggling with five to six hours a night, I am managing to go to bed earlier and sleep soundly for the first time in years. There has been the odd night when my mind refuses to switch off and I end up tossing and turning, but on the whole I believe my days have become far more productive, because of sleep.

So how did this happen?

Well, I put on my alarm for 6.00am. All of Australia must have heard my initial groans, but it has awoken my ‘princess time’, allowing me to make a cuppa and head back to bed for a few minutes of pure indulgence. Knowing that the next time I hit the floor it will be to put on my runners and walk. There was a lapse in the walking for several days, but I am now climbing the hill and still able to breathe. There are also a lot of cheery, friendly people around this time of the day. Folk who will look you in the eye and say ‘Good morning’, while walking their dogs or doing the same as me, the dreaded (need positive word here)exercise.

Somehow (I’m sure the scientists among you could tell me), these early morning walks seem to be bringing me more clarity in my thought life. As I embraces the thrill of watching the sun rising over the hill, I’m able to go over the day that is ahead and order it in such a way that it has become easier to complete. That’s not to say that a phone call or unexpected visitor is an intrusion, as I love both and always seem to find the time to fit them in.

There is a deep satisfaction waking up after a good nights sleep. Long may it continue.

© Sandie’s Snippets 2012

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Jeremiah 29:11, ‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper  you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’ (NIV)

This verse in Jeremiah is often quoted and used when people are going through troubled times. It came to mind this week as I pottered in my garden.

I love to experience the different seasons, autumn and spring being my favorite. Spring officially starts in little over a week, but our seasons seem to be going through a challenging time, where trees are only just beginning to shed their leaves and bulbs are starting to flower.

Spring bulbs bring me a great deal of joy as they sway with the breeze, basking in intermittent blue skies and the warming sun.  But preparation for this delight started in the autumn, when they were purchased and chilled in the fridge to create the illusion of a colder climate. Once planted, they shot up and developed into their very pleasing of blooms.

At times, we may also get put into what seems like un-natural situations, challenged to change our mindsets. While we may not appreciate or understand the benefits of those circumstances, we could just awaken something new. Then, if planted and allowed to take root, we too could become a beautiful flower in God’s Garden.

© Sandie’s Snippets 2012

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This week I have been attempting to create a piece of artwork from the labyrinth story I shared a couple of weeks ago.

The invitation to place what I had written on a local website, displaying a ‘Collective Collaboration in the Creative Arts’, has been great fun. Mixing paper and ink, with colour and contrast, stirs up something deep within. I love, love, love it.

Many would not appreciate what I appear to have created, it’s classed as ‘Contemporary Art’, a mixed media display of words and texture, the image telling as much about the story as the text.

Where on earth will I put it? It’s so unlike the images I have dotted around my home. They are traditional, neat cottage garden types, surrounded with traditional furnishings and inherited family collectables.

What I can say though, is that it has been incredibly satisfying to my inner creative being, so wherever it ends up will be alright with me.

© Sandie’s Snippets 2012

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Fact 1. Being a Purple Princess while shopping for new clothes is painful.

Fact 2. Being a Purple Princess in a stores changing room is frightening.

Fact 3. Being a Purple Princess when you are hunting for a new pair of bathers is near on impossible.

I’m not really a shopper and shopping for new clothes is one of my least favorite pastimes. But stores are slowly filling up with their summer range and I know from experience, that if I don’t get in quick, the size I need seems to disappear in an instant.

Armed with my limit of five items I head towards the changing rooms, grab a tag, open my bag for inspection, then proceed to the cubicle of horror. Granted they give you an honest perspective of what a garment looks like on, but between my nice comfortable warm clothing and the new cold starchy fabric, there is a frightening sight to behold.

Two successes and three rejections see me returning to the clothing isles, scouring for another colour of one top. Sold out already! Oh well, what’s new? I find a couple more possibilities and trudge back to the changing room, repeating the process for second and third time, ending up with me purchasing a ‘T-Shirt’ and black cardigan.

As for the bathers. The ones I though I’d try last Monday were sold out by Friday, so I went to another store and found a pair that seemed to fit the bill. I couldn’t handle any more changing room shocks, so I paid my money and took them home for a fitting. My singular mirror was much kinder and they will do nicely. HOORAY.

So what have I learnt this week as part of my Purple Project?

I am ok to be me. I may not be the size or shape I would like to be, but I am ok with who I am.

© Sandie’s Snippets 2012

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This is not a poem I have written, but it has sat in a scrapbook of mine for many years now. An internet search has seen it quoted in several places, but I am unable to attribute it to a particular author.

That said, I do read it from time to time and wonder about this world in which we live and our attitudes towards it. While I am not a ‘jump-up-and-down’ greenie, I do believe we should be good stewards of all that we have been given to watch over and care for.

Thought I would share it with you too.

‘THE UNCREATION’

 In the beginning was the earth,

And it was beautiful.

And man lived upon the earth and man said

‘Let us build skyscrapers and expressways.’

And man covered the earth with steel and concrete,

And man said, ‘It is good.’

 On the second day,

Man looked upon the clear blue waters of the earth

And man said, ‘Let us dump our sewage and waste into the waters.’

And man did, and the waters became dark and murky,

And man said, ‘It is good.’

On the third day,

Man gazed at the tall forests on the earth.

They were green, and man said:

‘Let us cut the trees and build things for ourselves’,

And man did, and the forests grew thin.

And man said, ‘It is good.’

 On the fourth day,

Man saw animals leaping in the fields,

And playing in the sun. And man said. ‘Let us trap

The animals for money, and shoot them for sport.’

And man did, And the animals became scarce.

And man said, ‘It is good.’

 On the fifth day,

Man felt the cool breeze in his nostrils

And man said, ‘Let us burn refuse and let

The wind blow away the smoke and debris.’

And man did. And the air became dense with smoke and carbon.

And man said, ‘It is good.’

 On the sixth day

Man saw the many kinds of people on the earth.

Different races, colours, and creeds.

And man feared and said. ‘Let us make bombs and missiles,

in case misunderstandings arise.’

And man did, and missile sites and bomb dumps littered the landscape.

 On the seventh day, man rested.

All the earth was quiet and deathly still.

For man was no more. And it was good!

 Source unknown.

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