21
Jul
10

Circles&swings

round&round from Dominique Travers on Vimeo.

19
Jul
10

This was my weekend.

…and I am floating on air with smiles, inspiration, and motivation for more.

urban gypsies from Milan Peyrac on Vimeo.

18
Jul
10

Quantum Theory of Positivity

I’m still not quite sure what I feel about the movie ‘What the bleep do we know’ and its references to quantum physics and our relationship with ourselves and our environment. The movie spells out and explains an inspiring theory, and I love the part about the Japanese dude who does experiments with water molecules! I do know however, that I believe in the law of attraction.

Like attracts like. There’s no doubt about it in my mind. Positive thinking has tremendous powers on so many levels. The pure vibration of a positive thought can change the energy in a room. And positivity not only attracts itself but breeds even more positivity! So start thinking positive people, it will change your life!

I am a positive and spiritual person and so I find positive and spiritual friends, I don’t really go looking for them, or post ads on spiritualfriendfinders.com, they just seem to appear out of the ether and into my life, which is rather convenient. And I love them. The more positive changes I am making in my life, the more I notice these things, more awesome people are crossing my path and the people already in my life seem to be getting more awesome. I can clearly see that I am inspiring them more and they are doing the same for me. The growing strength of my beaming aura is encouraging other to grow and giving them confidence and motivation to beam also (Think Nelson Mandela’s 1994 Inauguration speech). And those not open or ready to be in contact with this energy will subconsciously be repelled.

It’s daunting when you’re not in a good space in life and you have a friend who is just beaming with grounded happiness. Sometimes they can be exactly what you need to pull you out of your slump, but sometimes you just can’t face them and all you want to do is retreat to a small hole and die. Or perhaps be around some other people who are in a similar space as you so you can talk about the shittyness of life together. Like attracts like. When you feel shitty, the molecules in your body want more shittyness. When you feel lazy, everyday your arse glues just a little bit more of itself to your couch. When you feel fat, your stomach rolls ask for nothing more than cheesecake and ice-cream…

But when you are feeling clean and fresh, healthy and positive, there is nothing you would rather do on a Saturday than go for a long early morning walk in the sun and spend the day riding bikes around the city with the happiest friend you know.

16
Jul
10

Dry day # 3

Tonight is the third night of my personal alcohol detoxification program, or is it the fourth? It’s actually been so easy I’ve already lost track! Once I had my mind and body prepared for what was happening it’s been all good. ‘I’m not drinking tonight’ is a decision that gets made, if you feel a craving for wine or alcohol then eat an orange, some grapes or a glass of juice and you’ll be fine, unless you’re a raging alcoholic. I’m not a big drinker but usually have a glass or two of red wine most nights. I’ve got a pretty sensitive internal ecosystem and I was really starting the feel some adverse effects on body and mind from this amount of consistent drinking.

What I’ve noticed so far…

I feel generally awesome.

My snappiness and short temper has almost all completely vanished already.

I am sleeping much better and feel more relaxed in my sleep and brighter in the morning, less in need of coffee asap.

I am more patient, focused, happy, feeling calm, balanced and relaxed.

Plus extra self-confident and proud that I’m proving to myself that I am in control of my body and mind rather than my body and mind, cravings, emotions, etc. being in control of me.

16
Jul
10

New feet

I run.

These days I am learning to walk, fitting with my new passion for all things slow, but I still run. Earlier this week as I was nearing the end of my morning run/walk (I am now mixing the two so as to get benefits from both!), I happened to be stopped waiting for a traffic light right in front of a running-shoe store and before I knew it my daggy old sneakers had dragged me inside.

I don’t like shopping. All those unnaturally shiny things blinding me with their newness while there are perfectly good and nice-looking items at vinnies down the road, pre-loved and 1/10th of the price. Plus you have the whole inconvenience of trying things on and off and then having to make decisions which is definitely not my forte! Besides I could probably save a whole family in Africa from dying of malnutrition for the price of a new pair of running shoes from this shop.

But I’m a sucker for sales-men.

I’ve had my old running shoes for about 3 years now. And if we were to do the math, that’s about 1095 days, running on average 8km 4 times a week, that’s about 1600km/year and nearly 5000km in 3 years. Woah! Moral of the story is my old running shoes are long dead.

So as a little present for my self for all the positive steps towards health and balance that I’ve been making lately, I took the leap into a swanky new pair of shoes. Now the newly infused energy in my tootsies will hopefully make its way into my whole being to spur on my inspiration and motivation for life and living it to the full. Surrounded by good people, positive thinking, self-confidence and a grounded and calm approach to all things. I am loving being alive.

16
Jul
10

Georgia O’keeffe & Alfred Stieglitz

“What you see is not an apple tree, nor roundness, nor a bath. It is shapes in relationship. The imagination playing within the surface.”-Alfred Stieglitz

On Wednesday I attended a most civilized evening at the Art Gallery of New South Wales.

Artist talk: Janine Burke, author, ‘Source: nature’s healing role in art and writing’, in association with Alfred Stieglitz: the Lake George years.

ALFRED STIEGLITZ: THE LAKE GEORGE YEARS

‘One of the most influential figures in 20th-century American art, Alfred Stieglitz was among the first to recognise the power of photography as an artistic and poetic medium.’

Stieglitz’s exhibition was insightful and moving but it is his photographs of O’keeffe that hold my eyes in trance. There is something about this woman, not just her art and her life, but her face and her eyes, I see something that I imagine Stieglitz also saw. She is otherworldly, completely disengaged with the camera but at the same time so completely engaging in herself. Looking into her eyes, her hands, her expressions, I feel like I’m swimming into a bottomless sea of emotion. Her eyes look sad, beautifully sad, like she has seen things she would rather not have seen.

Now can someone tell me when I am going to walk into the gallery of an arty older man who will be intrigued by my deep, dark beauty and take me on as his muse/soon to be wife? Then I would like my own ranch in New Mexico to get away to for my own artistic inspiration please.

Georgia O’keeffe is my hero.

Ghost ranch: http://www.okeeffemuseum.org/her-houses.aspx

And thank you.

(I’d rather he not be German though)

14
Jul
10

This is why.

A fellow Australian on the importance of documentary photography with some incredible images of Australia’s bushfires and the world’s natural disasters.

www.smh.com.au/interactive/2010/national/photos1440

And Steve Christo on emotion in photography,

“It’s all about emotion. You’ve got to get emotion in a picture. If you don’t get that, then you’re just a normal person with a camera… You want to inspire people with your photography. That’s a big thing, to inspire. As a kid you always want to be inspired by someone…”

www.smh.com.au/interactive/2010/national/photos1440/christo.html

14
Jul
10

WordPress for teens

It just dawned on me this morning how much I would have appreciated blogging at the age of about 13-18. I think it would have really helped me find some much-needed support and self-expression through that tumultuous time. But alas I had no idea anything of the sort existed. Someone should start a special WordPress section especially for teens, wordpress.teen!

13
Jul
10

Hormonal rollercoasters

Today, after my therapeutic walk and healthy lunch I purchased some organic pomegranate juice which will now be replacing 6pm wino.

Taking control and making positive steps and changes in personal health and wellbeing is extremely satisfying. And you get to reap the rewards so quickly, a short walk or a bit of stretching in the morning can completely turn your day and entire outlook  on life around! It really doesn’t take much.

I am usually a person of extremes. But this time, I’m making changes gradually so they are more likely to stick. First step was no more cigarettes. I have to admit, I miss the ciggies, I feel like I’ve had to abandon a very good friend, but it was an important part of my experimental health improvement process so had to be done. I’ve now been cigarette-free for over 2 weeks. Step 2 was to stop torturing myself with ridiculous amounts of unnecessary exercise and concerntrate on more slow and holistic activities like long walks in the great outdoors, yoga, and playing cards with my grandma. Now comes step 3, booze. Starting tonight. At 6pm I will drink watered-down pomegranet juice, yay! I’m not going to stop drinking all together, that would be silly. Just having a break to see what it feels like.

I’m a pretty nice, upbeat, positive and loving person but I have noticed that I’ve been getting a bit snappy lately for no apparent reason. I have a strong feeling that this is connected to hormone imbalance in my body caused by various types of stress, too much coffee, alcohol, ciggies & sugar. So slowly the plan next is to also start cutting down on sugar and coffee. And once I’ve done that and am super happy, healthy, focused and even more of a joy to be around, then my experiment will be done and I can go back to being a toxin machine again!

😉

13
Jul
10

Walking vs. Running = Tea vs. Coffee… The stress factor

I recently read an article in my gym’s monthly magazine on ‘Why you’re not getting results’.

Stress.

Apparently we are 100 times more stressed than our grandparents were!

When we are stressed the body is working overtime releasing hormones and cortisol to regulate blood pressure, blood sugar levels and help fight stress and inflammation. Over an extended period of time when we don’t come back to homeostasis, the result is a slowed metabolism among other things and we end up with a hormonal imbalance that will not only effect us physically but emotionally too. Stress effects every system in your body.

Now the most interesting thing that I got from this article was that although we all know that exercise is good to combat stress, some exercise can also exacerbate it. ‘Exercise places additional physical stress on the body, most of the time this is beneficial and can help you combat psychological stress. However if you push a stressed body too hard you could push yourself over the edge, which is what we call burnout.’

So if you’ve had a crazy day at work and think to stop off at the gym on the way home to run it out at 12.5 on the treadmill until you’re sweating all over the place, panting like a dog and praying for someone to carry you home to bed… this may not be the best thing for you.

We need to determine our stress levels at the given time and modify our exercise to accommodate for our bodies needs.

Low stress people can basically do what they like.

Medium-High stress individuals need to monitor the intensity of their workouts. For these people high-intensity workouts will most likely be draining their bodies and thus detrimental to their health. These people need to use lighter weights with longer recovery, do only medium-intensity cardio and incorporate stress-reducing activities into their life such as yoga, Pilates, meditation, massage etc. And obviously try and lay off the excess booze, cigarettes, coffee etc.

So as I was driving across the harbour bridge yesterday from the peace and quiet of the North Shore, to the crazy fast-paced and highly stressed city, I was thinking about the different between drinking tea and coffee again. Like attracts like, so when we lived in a fast-paced, high-stress environment, we are encouraged and/or drawn to fast-paced activities. Eg. coffee-drinking, running/high-intensity sports, rowdy nights at the pub… All of which are the opposite of what we need to reduce stress and lead happier, healthier and calmer lives.

Most all of our activities are making things worse. Going for a brisk walk in the morning before work is going to be much better for you than downing a cup of black coffee and running your heart out to N.E.R.D for 40 minutes.

So my advice for today, have a cup of tea, go for a walk, breathe in the fresh air, listen to the birds… and let your body thank you for slowing down and giving it time to see how beautiful the trees are and how good the grass smells. And I will start by setting a good example for the three people out there who so far read my blog and go for a morning walk just now. Stay tuned for a more-smiling, less-stressed me.

x

12
Jul
10

Inspiration for today

“It’s never too late, you’re never too old, you’re never too sick to start from scratch once again..”

Bikram Choudhury

12
Jul
10

‘Low-fat’ is making us fat.

I put some ‘light’ soy-milk in my coffee this morning and immediately regretted buying it. This so-called ‘low-fat’ alternative to regular soy-milk and it’s watery nothingness ruined my sacred coffee this morning. Wasn’t soy-milk supposed to be a healthy and lower-fat alternative to milk in the first place? I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, ‘I am never buying low-fat anything ever again’. Foods and drinks are meant to be made from natural substances that come with a certain amount of fat in them and they should stay that way for optimum taste, and sanity.

To be honest every time I go to buy milk, I stand in the aisle whilst a small war breaks out in my brain…

“…Get soy-milk, it’s healthier and I like it better anyway”,

“No I don’t, I’ve just told myself that cause I thought it was healthier”,

“Remember the news report I saw last week on how too much soy is making us fat? All that extra oestrogen I don’t need.”

“Normal milk is more natural and therefore should be better for me, it comes from a cow and not processed from some bean that was not intended to make milk from…”

Arghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

So just like when I make toast and put peanut butter, jam and honey on it because I can’t decide and I like them all. I also alternate between cow’s milk, soy milk and occasionally some other alternatives just to make sure I’m not missing out on anything or getting too much of one thing. Moderation in everything is the key so they say.

Anyway, whether you choose soy, cow, goat, chicken, elephant or goose-milk… DO NOT BUY LOW FAT! It just does not taste good. And I’m pretty sure it’s not any better for you. I believe, especially with cow’s milk, that is has a whole lots of good nutrients, proteins etc. in it and if you take out the fat then you take out most of that good stuff too as it’s been processed once again. As it is it’s so hard these days to find organic, unhomogenised milk, which in Indian/Ayurvedic medicine is the ultimate pure food and full of goodness. So why do we insist to basterdise everything because we are so hung up on getting fat? To the extent that we eat things that not only are not good for us, but don’t taste good either, just because a label tells us it’s safe if we are watching our waste-line!

And besides, whenever I’m lining up to get a coffee at a coffeeshop, it’s mostly always larger people who order skim.

Full-fat not only makes you skinnier, but happier too!

12
Jul
10

scones in the spotlight

My scones were humble but delicious. They consisted of 3 ingredients – self-raising flour, butter & milk + jam and whipped cream.

Now for some celebrity-standard scones that one day after fasting all week I will attempt to make. WordPress seemingly suggested this post as related to mine so I am quite flattered, my new scone-friend’s post was posted on October 12, 2009, does that mean we are the only two people who have posted about scones in the last 9 months?! I’ll have to check up on that and if this is the case, I’ll post about scones more often!

Pumpkin scones @ www.dishinanddishes.com

11
Jul
10

Sunday morning scones

It’s 9:11 on Sunday morning and I’m making scones. There was a commitment to posting no photos on this blog which is going to be especially hard to stick to today but I will. Instead I will paint the delicious scone picture with words.

Where did the inspiration to bake scones today come from? Well I’ve posted previously about my passion for tea. The ritual behind scones gives me this same comforting feeling that a warm cup of milky tea does. Scones remind me of childhood and my grandma. Usually I visit my grandma every Sunday morning and we have croissants and coffee and then play Canasta (a French card game) which is probably my favourite ritual of all time. She’s French and so is the ritual, which she’s been doing pretty much since she was born in the South of France in 1918. So it’s kind of special to me, and so is she. So today, just to mix it up a bit, I’m baking scones instead of buying croissants from the local baker.

I’m caring for my 92 year old grandma at the moment. Living with her full-time for 5 weeks while my aunt, her daughter, who usually lives with her goes away on a well-deserved holiday. I like to think of fun things to do with my gran while I’m here with her, like cooking her exciting food that she wouldn’t normally eat, playing games, listening to her stories and getting her out of the house and away from the TV, taking her places she wouldn’t usually go. She has a very definite rhythm and I think it’s really good for her to do some different things every now and then. I watched a shown a year or so ago about some really old dude who was so on the ball and all these other old people were asking him questions about what his secrets were. The one thing he said which stuck in my mind was that whenever he went somewhere, walking or driving, he would always try to take a different route so as to keep his mind and senses sharp. Very clever. When we get to used to something, whether it be a job, a recepie, a car route, a speech, we have done it a number of times so it becomes no longer challenging and we are no longer using our intellect to perform the task. And apparently this is why some people loose their mind, simply because they forget how to use them.

My grandma may be 92 but she’s doing pretty damn good. She doesn’t really need a whole lot of care, just someone to keep her company, drive her to bingo and church, cook her dinner and turn the tap or stove off when she forgets. And of course someone to be there if she was to have a fall. I know not all old people are pleasant but my grandma is the sweetest lady in the world and I love old people, they are awesome. Out of all things in the world, the thought of people shipping their parents and grandparents off to nursing homes where they are not treated well is what sends most shivers down my spine. As well as seeing little old ladies that can’t make it across the road quick enough before the little red man stops flashing and the impatient cars start revving their engines and scare her half to death.

Old people deserve to be looked after. They looked after us when we peed and pooed and threw up all over the house, lost weeks and months of sleep trying to clam us when we were up crying in the middle of the night for no apparent reason. They went to work every day of their life so that we could go to good schools and have decent food to eat. They made numerous sacrifices in their lives for us and now as soon as we are challenged with the sacrifice and potential burden of having to care for them, we palm them off on some stranger? This does not make sense. Would you not prefer to live the last years of your life in a familiar place with you family and people you love and trust? Or does the idea of a cold stark room with uncomfortable chairs, cardboard food and a big group of people whose family has also abandoned them sound better?? This does not make sense to me.

In India is it a culturally ingrained custom that the sons wife move into the parents home and the daughters move to where they marry. So the sons inherit the home, land and anything else from their father and in return make the commitment to be there with their parents as they get old. This is the family system and it works. There are no old people’s homes in village India, nor are there abandoned oldies on the streets. Old people are respected, people from other houses or sometimes other villages will come and visit these respected elders to get advice or simply be in their experienced and wise presence. They posses a life of knowledge and the insightful perspective of one at the last stage of life. This is a special and beautiful thing.

Cherish this.

11
Jul
10

The writers fork

The Head Line refers to your quality of mind and intellectual appetite, not your IQ or membership in Mensa.

The longer the Head Line the more dedicated you are to learning. You have a lot of respect for knowledge and believe in equality. Although you never tire of learning new things, you are strongly opinionated. But, you enjoy the company of your friends. There are times when you overestimate your abilities, but your traits of willing to learn and quick thinking help you out of many awkward situations. Good professions for you would be writing, teaching, public relations, or public speaking.

A Head Line ending in tassel-like fork –called a writer’s fork –shows that you are curious and inventive. The wider the fork the more resourceful you are. You have the ability to bring a breath of fresh air into stale and stagnant situations.

Source: www.xomba.com

and this site is also quite interesting: hamaramultan.com

11
Jul
10

I’m on a WordPress high!

Whoever invented blogging is a fucking genius. Full stop.

There is so so many reasons to justify this so let’s go into a few…

First of all lets talk about me because this is my blog and all! 😉 I used to journal on and off up until the age of about 18-19. I can’t remember exactly why I stopped but I do remember never wanting to read through my old journals when I’d find them years later. I had a not particularly fun or happy childhood, I was slightly screwed in the head for various reasons so I didn’t really want to be reminded of that by sitting down and reading about it! And these days I just generally feel like a dufus writing in a journal to no-one. Then I discovered blogging. No waste of paper, easily deletable, you can choose to be recognised as yourself or create a whole new persona and your little sister/husband/wife/parent probably won’t find it. Cast your little blog-bait out into the webmosphere and see who bites. Then we get the added bonus of getting to do some research into the life of our catch, because they too will most-likely have a blog of course!

In todays disconnected world we are all searching for new ways to be acknowledged as human beings and find connection with others without having to knock on the new neighbours door with a freshly baked apple pie. Sense of community is so far from what it was, so many people don’t even know the people who live and sleep 10 meters from their home. As much as we can constantly surround ourselves with friends, lovers, family, and remind ourselves that we are one small part of the bigger picture, we do reside in our bodies alone, we experience this world differently to everyone else. This is a scary thought for some, and for those who are not inclined to put themselves in many social situations often feel alone and misunderstood and any way that we can fill the minutes with something that masks this scary fact is well-welcomed. TV, books, music, computer games, food, alcohol, sport… blogging! Through blogging, we can be as honest or as full-of-shit as we like and out of the millions of bloggers out there, there’s sure to be someone who will understand, provide comfort to your deepest darkest fear you’ve just typed up on the world-wide web. This is nice. And there’s something for everyone in the blogging world. young, old, rich, poor, artistic, foodie, arachnophobic…

Blogging encourages us to get more passionate about things and share them. Not everyone can have an art exhibition for example but it’s much more exciting spending the weekend out taking beautiful pictures when you know you can get back home and post the good ones for people to enjoy rather than letting them get lost on your computer’s hard-drive. The blog-world is bringing people together in a way that suits todays technology-based, fast-paced society. It is the fabulous cosmic chance for the average Joe-blo to be inspired by another average Joe-blo from the opposite side of the planet, and be inspired by him in return.

Blogging is good and I love it.

It feels amazing to be writing again, feeling the smooth keys run under my fingers and cute little words turning into paragraphs and pages on the computer screen. I have so much to write, there is a well that is trickling but I feel the pouring of words now starting. No specific subjects to talk about, just lots of words to release. I am a writer. The last few years I think I’ve been kidding myself that my self-expression is through my photography, which in part it definitely is. A picture is worth a thousand words, sometimes yes. But for me the words are still there and I haven’t been saying them.

Now I speak.

10
Jul
10

Is spirituality a turn-off or on?

So… the great spiritual debate!

I did only start this blog early this morning. But it’s now 5:40pm on a Saturday night and I’m about to go out with some friends for my first social interaction of the day, and before I do so I feel the need to address the subject of spirituality as it’s a pretty big part of my life.

So my first question to blog-readers out there:

When you are reading a blog and the writer starts getting a bit spiritual on you, not religious, but just a little esoteric/metaphysical, do you stop reading asap and search for something pragmatic? Or if it’s intelligent and interesting spiritually-fueled conversation, do you find it refreshing and calming, adding new insight and inspiring energy to your day?

10
Jul
10

stats

4 readers and 1 comment in my first day of posting, that’s a bit exciting.

10
Jul
10

What do you do for work?

Note to self: enter competitions.

Last week I heard about a woman (friend of a friend) who enters competitions for a living. She spent $2000 on pepsi to win some comp and apparently wins an average of $250000 of prizes/prize money each year!

10
Jul
10

We now have running hot water and I saved $120 in gas-man fees by having a go myself, just pulled apart the hot water system to release a simple jammed button.

These are good feelings.




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