Vulnerability and Shame

Ah, Friday. Best time of the week, I think. You have Friday evening, and then there is still all of Saturday and Sunday to come! I am chilling out watching some music videos on YouTube currently. After buying Darren Hayes‘ recent album, Secret Codes and Battleships, I have also been listening to his older albums and his music from Savage Garden days. So much good music!

Thinking on my lack of updating on here, and, well my lack of most creative pursuits, I realised that what stops me is my wanting to always be perfect. Whatever I do MUST be perfect. No mistakes. But really, that isn’t possible (and when I checked this post for mistakes, I had typed ‘that isn’t impossible’ hmm). I may want to keep everything all tightly wrapped and perfectly formed, but life isn’t like that. And living that way, you miss out on so much of life’s special wonders. There is no way to control everything, you need to learn how to let go of the things you cannot control. To do the best you can with what you have. And by ‘you’, I mean ‘me’!

I’ve watched a couple of Brené Brown’s talks (1 & 2) from TED recently, and her research and her message struck a cord. Shame and vulnerability. For me, they are a big part of my perfectionism. I don’t like to feel vulnerable, which is how I feel if I do things that won’t be/aren’t perfect; plus I feel great shame when my results, or even my actions, are the opposite of perfect. I don’t want to show vulnerability or face my shame. But in reality, I need to do both to move forward, to grow. I am inspired by Brené’s statement that “Vulnerability is our most accurate measurement of courage”.

It always seems better to wrap up the shame, the things I perceive to have done wrong or not perfectly and cocoon them into a ‘hidden’ ball. But then they just snowball and the layer around them gets bigger and bigger until they start to hinder future goals. Like a roadblock. A landslide. A wound. A splinter.

But how to you learn to not be so caught up in perfectionism? How do you face the shame and let it go? How do you learn to be vulnerable, but go forward anyway?

Some of my thoughts come from waiting for the results from my cataloguing assessment which was completed on Wednesday just gone. A big part of me wants it to be 100% marks or it is a failure. Another recent assessment saw me obtain 42 out of 50. My first thought was that it equalled failure. Not good enough. Silly, I know. But…

Do you also want to have all your creations be perfect? Or have you learnt how to let go of that need to be perfect? Have you discovered how to let go of shame? Please share! You can email me at, if you’d prefer to respond that way!


Librarian Girl

As you may guess from the title, dear reader, I have decided to complete my Library and Information Studies course ( I may have previously alluded to this). I had gone back to web design for a year but found my heart just wasn’t in it and I was completely sick of demanding, rude clients who thought they could take as long as they wanted to pay invoices. Do not want! Some of my current subjects are Cataloguing, Acquisitions, Databases and Information Research. Those are not the exact class titles, but sum up each class quite nicely. When I finish, I would love to find work in the Cataloguing/Archival areas.

Now that design can be for fun, I’m slowly starting to find my creative spirit again, particularly in terms of my own sites. This site will likely change a bit, every now and then, as I tweak the design and get it to look just so. In working on this site, I was browsing through my archives and discovered that on March 20, I will have been blogging for twelve years! There have been a few pauses in there, but hey – I’m still one of the early bloggers from before Blogger itself and even the ability to post a comment on a blog! That dates me a bit, too!

With some travel time each week, I’ve gone back to working my way through The Dark Tower series by Stephen King. I’m almost up to the end of the second book; no spoilers, please! It is amazing how fast time flies once I start reading, I’ve almost missed my stop a couple of times.

I shall post a few photos next post; some of the Kittens who are growing in leaps and bounds (or should that be fluff and meows?) and also some general snaps, including some of my latest stitching project. Mmmm stitching, I think I shall do some tonight!

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Pink Haired Woman

I’m a day late joining Blogtoberfest, but better late than never! Hoping to post every day for the rest of this month. Hello to other Blogtoberfesters and to non-Blogtoberfesters!

Changes. As well as changing the appearance of my blog, I’ve also changed my appearance. I have wanted pink streaks in my hair for years, but had been nervous about doing it. I’ve spent far too long worrying about what others might think and missing out on doing the things I really wanted to do. No more! My new hair is a start of me being me. Of discovering the real me. It is quite a fun journey!

The whole process of getting my pink streaks took a bit over two and half hours. First was the bleaching, then rinsing, then a little more bleaching, more rinsing, then dyes applied and yet another wash + treatment. I am *so* happy with the results! I love my pink hair, it is so me. I am already planning on adding a larger blonde slice with pink in the centre, at my next visit to the hairdressers. Yay, for pinkness!

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Cooking for the Queen!

Okay, not really! But it makes for a fun title, dontcha think?

While I did not actually cook for any members of the Royal family, I did cook a British meal for MY family for us to enjoy as we watched the Royal Wedding. We had Coronation Chicken & Potato Salad, Eton Mess and to follow, Lemon (and Lime) Squares Cake with Matcha/Green Tea Frosting. I wanted to choose classic British recipes and was excited to try Coronation Chicken for the first time! Very delicious and I shall make it again. I was very naughty in taking the photo below; I did not notice that I had inadvertently messed up the lovely table setting that my Mum made! Very bad Lysh! ;)

Baking & Coronation Chicken Salad and our pretty table!

Thank you to those who sent messages after my last post; your warmth is muchly appreciated. I am still very much missing my lovely Max, and I always will. I am emerging from my cave though, and trying to get back into things – including this much neglected blog! Cooking has been one of my mercies (as well as craft) and has helped me to return to my old self. I really enjoyed making my Royal menu, even with it taking most of the day! It was quite fun. If you’d like the recipes, see below the photograph of my yummy cake; which just had to have hearts!

Citrus Matcha Cake

  • Coronation Chicken & Potato Salad
  • Eton Mess
  • Lemon Squares Cake. I used lime zest & did not use their icing. I found that the cake did not rise as high as expected, but was very tasty. The lack of rising could be due to my using an oven that is quite old and in Fahrenheit rather than Celsius, so could be my error in getting used to the oven.
  • Matcha Icing. Icing recipe near the bottom.

So, those of you who watched and enjoyed the Royal Wedding, what did you think? Didn’t Catherine and Prince William look wonderful? I watched the whole thing wearing my tiara. A common girl gets so few chances to wear a tiara – why not grab the chance when one can?!

Although, I am sorry to report that when I put on my lovely tiara (from my Husbitect and I’s combined Hen’s Bucks night) I found that one stone had fallen out. *sob*. I’m hoping it is safe within a draw or bag and I shall find it soon. It may only be glass, but I love it all the same!


Until We Meet Again, My Gorgeous Boy

On April the 1st, at about 9pm, our darling Max passed away in our arms. His precious little head, cradled by my arm. He became very ill and was starting to feel pain from his illness. It was one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make, and I am lucky that I had my darling Husband with me. The veterinary hospital staff were lovely, and we had a private room with a lounge chair.

Max was (and is) my darling Kitty for over 15 years. He was my best, and for most of that time, my only friend. He loved me through my sad times and always knew when I needed some Kitty snuggles and purrs. We crafted together, listened to music together, watched birdies together and at night, he would sleep on my pillow or under the bedclothes, snuggled by my feet. I miss my little Max more than words can say.

Not having a house of our own, or a special, safe place to bury my baby kitty, we chose to have him cremated. Again, the veterinary surgery (Small Animal Specialist Hospital) and the cremation company (Pet Rest) were lovely and helpful. Max was returned to us safely and in only a few days.

I have his little casket with his ashes in one of my vintage cabinets. On either side are my two large black Cat statues – one for Max and one for Puss, my first kitty. They guard at either side and at the front I have four little miniature ornaments of black cats. I also have a special box with some of my first Cat’s fur and now, some of Max’s fur. I have surrounded them with Max’s favourite toys.

The picture I hold in my heart, the wish, is that Max and Puss, my two black Kitties, are together now in Kitty Heaven. All safe and not alone as they have each other. And one day, I hope I can be reunited with them once more. Until then, I trust that God will look after my Kitties, because I believe that God is there for animals too.

Goodbye for now, my darling Max. Thank you for your love and for being such a wonderful friend. Trust and stay with Puss, she’ll protect you, and you her. Until we meet again, my darling Boo. xxxx

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Springing Forward. Blogtoberfest Day 12.

This afternoon I had a lovely time playing with my photos in Photoshop. The Lily above being one such photo. After titling it ‘Spring’. I thought about what I want to change and learn in this season of growth and freshness. There are too many things to list that I would like to change and learn to list them all, so I will stick to ones that more obtainable and immediate. I can always do another list!

  • I want to learn to be more accepting, more comfortable with what I do and where I am in life. No more holding back because I am scared of what other people think, or worse, that I could never be as good as others so why start in the first place. Very self-defeating.
  • I want to finally get more serious about photography and try selling prints of of my photos. I’ve held back till now because of fear of failure and also, not wanting to have someone steal my work or claim it as their own. But if no one ever sees the photos that I take, they lose their value.
  • I would like to learn how to draw, both with paints and canvas as well as digital illustration. I have plenty of paints, watercolour crayons and ideas; I just need to start.
  • I have dabbled with the older version of Terragen in the past and really enjoyed it. Now that there is a much newer, more advanced version, I want to learn how to use it in more depth. One of my images from Terragen is at the end of this post.
  • When I was much younger, in my late teens and early twenties, I used to enjoy writing and coming up with short stories. As I got older, I lost my confidence (I can see a pattern developing) and stopped writing. Time to dig out those old stories and get back into writing.
  • I would be over the moon if I could stop being so disorganized. Not to mention scattered in my approach to things. I know I will never be one of those perfectly organized people, but I would like to be better at it than I am. Being able to find things easily would be so wonderful! To start, I should create a filing system for myself.

I think that is enough to be getting on with for now, don’t you?! Writing that list highlighted just how much my confidence in my abilities (or lack of) has affected my life, particularly in terms of creativity. I want to go back to having that wild, carefree abandon in creativity that I used to possess. Deep down, I know I still have faith in myself somewhere, I just need to nurture that tiny flame and help it become a fire once again.

An ocean scene that I created a few years ago in Terragen.

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City Lights

After some frantic weeks of searching, himself and I have found somewhere lovely to live. We now live on the North Shore of Sydney and have not only a water view, but a view of the city which looks exceptionally beautiful at night. Another bonus is that we often get wonderful views of storms and all from either the lounge room or all cosied up in bed! The photos below were taken a week or so ago when a storm was raging and the two of us were perched on the end of the bed, using the bed rails as makeshift camera tripods!

Stormy Lights
Now that we are more or less settled in to our new home, regular posts will now resume! :)


We’re getting Married!!

We Are Engaged!!

On the 1st of September, my beloved asked me to marry him and I said yes! He is the man I completely love and adore, the one I want to spend the rest of my life with; my answer could only have been yes! He chose sunset at Sublime Point road in Leura to propose and it was so beautiful, romantic and a moment I will always treasure. I’ll never forget the way I felt when he asked me to be his wife; it was the most magical, breathtaking moment of my life.

The first photo was taken on the balcony of our room on Hamilton Island a few weeks ago. The second is my beautiful engagement ring (and our hands entwined) and the third was taken not long after my wonderful Fiancé proposed. Another couple had walked down to the lookout and offered to take our photo together which was lovely timing.

Squeeee! x 5 trillion zillion and into infinity. I’m engaged to the most wonderful, handsome, intelligent, amazing and talented man in the universe and I absolutely love and adore him!! :cupid: :heartbeat:


Life is Good

I am still alive and well, even though I haven’t updated for a long time. My life has changed in many ways over the last few months and in particular, the last two weeks. I did move to Sydney, but not to where I thought. Originally, I was going to stay with a relative or friend of the family while I looked for work. But things changed, as they have a habit of doing. You see, I was asked to live somewhere much, much better. Better, because it’s with the someone who I’ve given my whole heart to; my love and I now live together and life is wonderful! As I type this, he’s sitting less than an arms length away, awww. The photo below was taken when we were at Port Stephens. Mmmm, my handsome one. ;)

My Love and I
Another way my life has changed is through a change of careers. Not finding much in IT/Design, I applied for a wider range of jobs. I was fortunate to get an interview with one business, then a trial day and then, I got the job! I now work in the Sydney cbd, a short distance away from this famous tower. I’m not entirely sure whether I am allowed to mention where I work on my weblog, so for now I’ll just say that it is a retail position. A very steep learning curve as I have never worked in retail before, but I’m getting the hang of things and haven’t made any really silly mistakes…I hope!


This is it

This New Year has been the most wonderful, the most relaxing and also, the most inspiring New Year of my entire life. I came back a couple of days ago from an absolutely wonderful holiday with my love at Port Stephens. Every day was wonderful and amazing; and like other recent events, it inspired me to make some changes in my life.

I’m about to move to Sydney, to the Mount Colah area. It may be very late in coming, but it’s time for this little bird to leave the familial nest and learn to fly. There are two main factors that inspired that decision, a) I’ll be closer to he who makes my heart go boom boody-boom boody-boom boody-boom and b) I’ll be in an area where I can find work and hopefully, start a new career.

My life has changed so much over the last two months. In a short amount of time it’s going to change even more. It does make me nervous on some levels, not in a bad way, but in that “ok, this is a big thing for me to do, and I’m nervous as anything, but I really want to do this” way. I know and can feel in my heart that this is the right time for me to do this. It is the time when I need to do this.

So if anyone knows of any job leads in Sydney, preferably right in the city or North Sydney, let me know! I’m already in intense job seeking mode (which will cause skill update mode) and have applied for as many as I can find. I’d also love to join some of the groups in Sydney now that I’ll be closer, ones like Stitch and Bitch and the Sydney Photobloggers.

I’m risking more than I ever have in my entire life. I’m changing my life and turning it upside down. And that makes me feel a wee bit scared. But delicious scared. Delicious, because I can see that the life I’ve always wanted is finally within my reach. All I have to do is take the next step. And I will.

Sam: This is it.
Frodo: This is what?
Sam: If I take one more step, it’ll be the farthest away from home I’ve ever been.
Frodo: Come on, Sam. Remember what Bilbo used to say: “It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.”


Oooh, time really does fly!

I hope everyone has had an absolutely wonderful holiday. Mine was absolutely, amazingly special. Life is good. Very, very, good. In fact, life has never been this good. It feels as if life’s volume is suddenly one hundred percent louder and sweeter.

I’m behind with emails, comments and the like but I will be caught up well before the weekend. I will be sending out some Christmas New Year cards, too. :)


Murphy's Law?

Oh dear, I think I’m coming down with a cold! It would come on today of all days when I have so much to do. I hope it’s just one of those 24 hour things, because I will not be at all happy if it lasts past this week. I didn’t think it was actually possible to get a cold during summer. Ugh. Time for heavy duty orange juice and ‘fever’ inducing naturopathic drinks to try and fight it off. Wish me luck!

One of the things I’m working on at the moment is selling prints of my photos. If you’ve got some spare time, I’d really appreciate it if a few people could have a look at my Flickr stream and tell me which (if any!) photos they think would make great prints. You can comment here, email me or leave a comment at Flickr, whichever you like. Thanks in advance!