Some days I feel completely overwhelmed by stencils, picking bits of plastic out of every nook and cranny (seriously, the other day I found a rib in my bra and a tiny heart in the upstairs hallway. How does that even HAPPEN?!!!). Other days, I feel completely in love with the fact that I can say, “a _____ stencil would be awesome right now!” and then be using one less than an hour later. Boom.
So last time I had this happen, it was fetuses. This time? Speech bubbles and doilies.
I am sort of in love with these speech bubbles. I immediately used them to make this page in my minimoley:
Because everyone likes bossy babies, right?
I also went on a spree of designing doily-type-mandala-type circular stencils. On a whim, really. But there are eyeball-based designs…
I used these bad boys to make halos for my newest series of paintings, Strange Saints:
(I have prints available in my other Etsy shop, in case you have been dying to know that information. You have, right?!!)
So here is the part you have been waiting for. Leave a comment below, and I’ll pick a random comment (using random.org) on Saturday, March 18! The winner will receive the speech bubble stencil and a doily of their choice! WOO!! If you share this on Facebook or other social media places, leave another comment so that you get credit for all your hard work!
Again, before we get started with this week’s prompt, I need to say a thing. Many things.
When you commit yourself to love, people will probably try and tell you you’re not doing it right, you’re not doing enough.
When you commit yourself to love, people may even tell you that you’re full of shit.
When I say, “be love,” I don’t mean that you have to be a doormat. You don’t have to be silent. You don’t have to turn the other cheek so many times that you have nothing but scarred, tattered flesh left behind. You don’t have to just sit and ignore things that hurt your heart.
When I say, “be love,” it goes for you, too. Love yourself. Speak up for yourself. Defend yourself. Defend those who can’t defend themselves. Be the person who doesn’t back down in the face of hate. Do ALL THINGS in the name of love, and you will change the world.
Okay, enough of that. On with the show.
The path of Love begins with a single step.
Krama (not karma, krama) is progression. It is a set of steps that you take to reach a goal. It is uninterrupted or regular process. It is focus. It is that moment when the cat goes still, waiting, ready to pounce. It is the anticipation of release. It is the sequence of action.
In more esoteric terms, krama can be represented by the chakras, those subtle energetic points in your body.
I found this image (a share of a share of a share, so I’m not sure where the original source came from), which seemed perfect for the step-by-step nature of the prompt. The Seven Steps to Happiness:
and, because I’m mildly obsessed/fascinated with chakras, have a video that’s pretty cool:
(I don’t know about extremely powerful or not, but it’s pretty cool to sit and stare at the images and contemplate… Some people in the comments were pretty freaked out by it, so be forewarned. lol!)
Here’s my page this week:
Pretty simple this week, but all of the steps. So delicious.
Ways to work with this prompt:
Journal about the progression of love. Your path. Your personal progress.
Meditate on the chakras, what they mean to you – you may need to do some research!
Explore the concepts of progress, progression, the steps we take or need to take.
Pick any of the steps listed above and make a page about them. Alternately, do all seven!
Fear less, love more. <3
No video from me this week (unless you’re on Patreon.. If so, it’s getting posted momentarily!), so I’ll see you next week!
I did a stencil giveaway last week, and the winner has been chosen by the magic of random.org:
Yay congratulations, iffyarchive, with this spectacular comment:
Damn right. Baby kittens.
I have a bunch of new designs in the works, and I love to give stuff away, so keep those peepers peeped!!
OKAY! Now that business is out of the way, time for more business!
Just do small things with great love
Suksma is all about the small things, the seemingly insignificant, the intangible, minute, small, fine thin, unimportant, and subtle. In its broadest definition, it is this: That thing you’re looking for is right here.
Feel the subtle energy shifts. Let it become part of your entire being. Know that every movement is exactly what is needed. Love those things that seem small and insignificant. Know that they aren’t.
This week I have no meditations or contemplations, really, but I do have real-life homework, should you choose to accept it.
Embrace those things that seem meaningless. For me, it was the way that food with a face makes me laugh. I love the cute squishiness of it all.
and really, isn’t that what it’s all about?
Ways to work with this prompt:
Journal about small, subtle things you love/ways to express love.
Think about the phrase, “the thing you’re looking for is right here.” What are you looking for?
Make lists. List the things you love in nature, the people you love, the actions you take that fill you with joy. Figure out a way to bring more of these into your life.
What small thing brings you a HUGE HAPPY? For me, it’s food with a face. For you it could be a butterfly, a cup of coffee, a unicorn, a stormtrooper. Whatever it is, incorporate that into your journal.
Work with any of these quotes:
Just do small things with great love. – Mother Teresa
Sometimes the smallest act of love can take up the biggest space in someone’s heart. – Unknown author
If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way. – Martin Luther King, Jr.
Great things are done by a series of small things brought together. – Vincent Van Gogh
GO OUT INTO THE WORLD. Perform small acts of love. Here are some ideas!!
Pay for someone’s coffee/art supply/book.
Call or text someone just to say, “I love you.” Bonus points for singing it like Stevie.
Reach out to a neighbor.
Support or volunteer for an organization. Especially one that doesn’t benefit you personally. Even if all you can do is email and say, “hey I love you,” then do that. Small things. Big difference.
Smile at a stranger. Compliment a stranger. Hold a door open.
I think that’s all for me this week. Come on over to the Facebook group for camaraderie. Check out my Patreon where you’ll get the real-time video for this week’s timelapse.
and, speaking of this week’s timelapse, here it is!
This week was a little difficult for me, frankly. It’s all about gentle holding, and I’m all about fierce and unrelentless. Add that to a day filled with unscheduled errands and visits, and it became a comedy of errors. But, a day late, we’re rolling!
Holding the tender mystery
Kumbhaka has many definitions. It can be a vessel, jar, or chalice. It can be the prominence on the upper part of an elephant’s forehead. It can be a type of breath where you linger and pause.
Kumbhaka is the pause between the inhale and exhale, that sweet spot of holding, of anticipation. From the Radiance Sutras:
At the end of the inhale, Filled with the song of the breath, There is a moment when you are simply Holding the tender mystery.
In these interludes, Experience opens into exquisite vastness With no beginning and no end. Embrace this infinity without reservation. You are its vessel.
Think about the things you hold tenderly, the things you hold with as light a touch as you would a baby bird. Think about the love you give gently, lingering and tender.
Take in a deep breath and pause. Hold the breath until you must release and then sigh it out. When you inhale, you are the vessel of infinity. Your container is full. You are expansive. When you exhale, your container is empty. You are receptive.
I contemplated this concept and thought about the fact that we’re all connected, we’re all one. I love you as I love myself, as I love my husband, my parents, my children. It is a gentle holding, though – it is undemanding, a low thrum, soft as a sigh. I love you because your existence is woven into infinity just as mine is. It is a whisper, asking for understanding, for compassion, for empathy. It is a powerful whisper, but a whisper nonetheless. I will always hold space for you, even when I disagree.
Ways to work with this prompt:
Journal about holding and the things you love gently.
Meditate on interconnectedness. Practice the kumbhaka pranayama (breath regulation): inhale, hold for a count of 3. Exhale. Repeat. Try it when you are feeling overwhelmed, angry, or frustrated.
Explore the concepts of expansive/receptive, the concept of holding, what it means to hold, to hold space, to hold love.
I just released my new favorite stencils. All of my stencils are my favorite stencils, but these are my new favorites.
Effy talks about being a swearbear on Facebook a lot – meaning she likes the F-bomb. I use the F-bomb as a comma most days, so I can totally get behind that. (click on the image and it’ll take you to the uncensored version!)
These are journaling block-type stencils – you can give yourself a little spot to write on. I made a video about these when I designed my first set. Check it out if you’re so inclined!
I also recently added some crop circles, some resistance stencils, and a whole bunch of 3 x 5 inch minimoley stencils (sized to fit in the back pocket of a Moleskine Daily Planner), so check it out!
OKAY so I haven’t done a giveaway in a while. I guess it’s time! Comment below to be entered to win, and I’ll send some fetuses and swearbears to your door. If you share on any social media place, comment again so that you get multiple entries! I’ll pick a winner on Sunday, February 26.
Good luck, and may all your teddybears have potty mouths.