I am proud of myself that . . .

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When your friend shares with you in an email that a special practice to do at this turn of season time is to spend a little time thinking of all the accomplishments and growth experienced over this past year . . .

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I turned to this rose filled page I’d been saving for a time I’d know it was right to use it. I began to write the phrase my dear friend invited me to be with . . .

“I am proud of myself that…. “

I had no idea it would open a little flood gate and tears would spill out of my eyes, I didn’t realise how difficult it would be to answer this . . .

I realised again how I give so much time to noticing what I’m not doing enough of, how my business isn’t flourishing in the way I think it’s meant to, and it equates to so much focus on not enoughness that it was actually confronting to ask myself, honestly,

What have I done this year that I am proud of?

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I’m not sure it’s important to share here what I wrote, what seems most pressing is how it made me feel. I wondered how many other of my friends and connections do this same dance of scarcity.

I am often reminded of the importance of self kindness, I’ve made it my life’s work to be kind to this self I show up as for this life journey.

I was raised in a religion that told me I was worthless without God in the way they wanted me to believe in ‘him’, and now as a 48 year old woman I have come to different conclusions about this God thing and currently believe that we are all part of the Source of life having a human experience, but no less connected to the One than the Pope, Buddha, Jesus or Anyone. I don’t care much for arguing this point of view, this is my page, I get to say whatever I like. I also can’t be bothered to argue for another’s limitations.

This …. this thing… this deeply woven, skein of a belief that holds the note I’m not enough, is really effing toxic.

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Little dd – inner child expressions of wisdom and whimsy by Denise Daffara

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If you’re curious as to what I realised was the thing I was most proud of this year. . .

I’m proud of myself that . . . I was able to be present with my dear Mummah at the time of her death, and now I am learning a new way to live. More real, and more true.

and it hurts sometimes, and like I keep mentioning from time to time (because I’m still learning it) is; to hurt is part of life, to live a full, wide and deep life I must go through those times to discover what is hidden beneath the layers.

Layers I have covered things with

Layers that were tucked in for generations of covering, nothing to see here

Layers of the onion that keep peeling off,

you know… we don’t have a bottomless coffee in this life

we have a bloody never peeled onion.

 

Yours Curiously,

Denise xo

 

 

Altered States for Break Through’s

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Curious about the Landmark Forum.. and Tony Robbins world of break throughs. I have not gone to one of these seminars, but I really admire the personal growth that is encouraged by them both.

little dd colourful shapes

I often find myself wondering if this form of ‘BIG COMMITMENT WEEKEND OR DAYS OF RA RA’ is something I’d really benefit from. … here’s the wonderings from this morning’s pages.

So much sorting out of thoughts. It’s like I’m afraid I can’t really GET THERE?? without it, (get where? a breakthrough?, but I continually do seek and find breakthrough’s) and then there would never be enough courses, SO MANY… on every topic – and Tony Robbins has many courses too.

Ahhhh but this is about PEAK PERFORMANCE. Do you have to be a certain type to seek out this PEAK’NESS of which they speak?

So many ways to run this human show.

They each help you to see ‘where are you running a story?’

‘Where have you made stuff up that you’re now using to hurt yourself?’

‘When do you reckon you can STOP THAT?’

Little dd wondering

It’s like we feel safer in a room filled with other humans who are all seeking happiness to be able to receive that collective boost to shift our vibration significantly to a place of new being’ness.

Having others in the room that have experienced it and witnessed it for themselves gives us the validation we may need so that we don’t end up believing it was all just hype and lasting change didn’t really happen – and we find ourselves back home, staring into space, and wondering what the heck was that and what the heck is this all about?

So… creating spaces where altered states of self belief are welcomed, honoured and nourished seems extraordinarily interesting to me. (not unlike what churches were developed for… but I’ll not go down that rabbit hole today)

I am interested in shifting my perspective to one of support and love for this human I move around in.

Right now, today, I feel more attuned to a quieter upheavel of unwanted limiting beliefs, and a daily awareness of choosing thoughts that serve my highest good … I’m also trying out a thing called PSTEC.org , which came highly recommended by an inspirational lady named April Adams.

But… if you’ve had a life changing, hugely life enhancing experience of these experiental learning events… I’m more than happy to hear your take on it.

I’m not out to say any of it is wrong.. I am simply and honestly, seeking the best way forward.

I am interested in shifting my perspective to one of support and love for this human I move around in.

watch own show

Curiously,

Denise x

Self Harming without the Cuts

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As a curious one, I subscribe to rather a lot of interesting teachers, healers, inspirers of the world . . . I get snagged by those landing pages, ‘click bait’ … ‘lead magnets’ [nod].

This means, I get to receive some of their thoughts, gifts and offerings into my email box… some VERY regularly, and well, if they are over zealous I allow myself to unsubscribe but some I choose to keep..

… I read the subject line, it draws me in.. and whoa.. before I know it I’ve read a page that transforms some of my thinking, or meets me right where I am, and THEN… can come the self harming part.

little dd frustrated at the desk

I want to speak about this part, self harming without cutting. Not unlike those vicious paper cuts that catch you by surprise, and sting like a bee. I’m referring to the moment you take a message read on the page, the screen and COMPARE your own output, or achievements, or experience in a way that has you sense, or feel you are not enough. Not doing enough. Not being enough. Not giving enough.

Do you ever start to look at the author or artist as a super human? One who hasn’t had a day of self doubt in the last 6 months and they are thriving and flourishing in their online arena blooming like a springtime garden?

There are likely many psychological reasons we humans do this, probably running patterns of ‘not enoughness’ from childhood osmosis. I seek to make a safe space for myself to be ok in this world just the way I am. I am always, all ways, open to growing, and learning, that is not my issue here.

Little dd by denise daffara

To me a landing page is one in my art journal where I can show up wild and true and free, and give my words and feelings a safe place to land.

My issue is how I mistreat myself, and feed self doubt.

Marketing blue prints can come across as an assault to my sensitive soul.

Today’s world of free stuff, social media and marketing is so full, it can crowd out our own still small voice of reason and strength. Authenticity is the current catch cry of the online arena.. and I mean catch. cry.

It is so so so challenging to find a way to bring ones gifts online without losing, or indeed bruising the very heart and soul that you begun with.

To me a landing page is one in my art journal where I can show up wild and true and free, and give my words and feelings a safe place to land… not a first page of a web site that captures peoples addresses so that I can fill up their email boxes to the point of madness.

landing page by denise daffara

video featuring this image at the end of this post

 

To be honest, I am conflicted, I am an artist and I hold space for online courses myself, and I am currently seeking ways to connect with those who are drawn to my way of sharing and being in the world so that I too may welcome classes filled with delighted participants. But this cannot be in lieu of my integrity. It really cannot. I call BS on this current flood of too muchery and not enoughery.

I want to hear real and be real, sans bullshit.

When I am hit with the barrage that sometimes comes in the form of “you asked for it, now I’m gonna give it to you” I am sometimes left feeling bewildered, emotionally drained, and definitely not enough just as I am.

little dd by denise daffara

I’ll use a recent happening as an example… it began with a free video series, powerful, shiny, beautifully presented. … but when it came time to sign up, to commit, to buy in… I started to receive daily emails: one that said it was from ‘The Universe” .. not the sender.. and then “ a note from myself, to myself’ .. the email was written in a form (by the seller) that it was my future wise self talking to my current self … basically saying how much this program had made a difference and how I really needed to sign up.

What the actual f? This may work for many, this may seem to come from a sincere place of someone seeing great potential in me.. but I start feeling irky inside and I have to pause.. which you cannot do if you are reading and watching every piece of marketing that flies into your in tray (inbox).

I call PAUSE on this, I feel it is dangerous and potentially damaging. I witness and sense the desperation this vibration tends to connect with and it’s not where I want to have myself nor my work live, breath and flow from.

little dd listening to music

Right now I am in the wonder zone, the intersection of receiving so much information on how to do an online business, the whispers from inner wise voice and my own upper limits.  My current challenge seems to be letting go of the fear of rejection. Facing what success and failure means to me, why marketing makes me so freakin mad.

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Smashbooking & Creativitea Time Circle

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Autumn in Adelaide, I felt so delighted by our hostess’s garden, such seasonal changes aren’t always part of Queensland life.. so taking a trip to the bottom of this big land was a new adventure, not just geographically.

autumn leaves

Smashbooking with a gorgeous bunch of women in Adelaide was a real treat for me. I was welcomed with open arms by a friend made online 5 years ago, but not yet met in person. Dana Sparkle and I met in Dream Boogie with SARK about 2011 (I was in a very perplexing state of ‘artist block’ which was really ‘inner critic takeover of my whole life’)

From where I was then, to this day, being picked up by Dana and Gina and driven off into the Adelaide hills to meet new friends and teach a workshop was a beautiful enriching experience for me.

Darling Dana Sparkle

Time away from the busy, brings such beautiful moments where we may pause and be.

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This workshop begins with a circle, we find connections and come into a space of allowing what wants to be heard, and felt. I loved observing how tentatively we can begin this process. There are parts that take us deep within to find our inner whisperings, but once they are brought out, and secretly written down we tuck them in safely.

… a sense of playfulness arises as colour is added…. and when the pages are ‘smashed’ that’s a whole other release of energy and Perfectionista is seen racing out the back gate as she cannot stand this part.

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The freedom and joy that unfolded as these smashbooks were made was pure alchemy in action. I’m smiling again as I write and see these images.

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Surrounded my angels and fairies we were, in the gorgeous back yard of Ilona’s home in the Adelaide Hills.

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Thank you beautiful Adelaidies Gina, Cristy, Jane M, Teena, Dana & Ilona.

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often associated with Christmas by our Northern hemisphere friends… but of course.. we have winter mid year! Holly and ivy growing in Ilona’s garden.

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Smashbooking is a delightful freedom seeking release for my creative spirit, taught to me by the wonderful Catt Geller .

I teach an online course called ‘Creativitea Time’ where we begin with making a smashbook to hold the activities and offerings made. I am available for private workshops and very occasionally I hold them in my home.

There is one coming up at the end of July, if you are able to make it to Queensland’s Sunshine Coast in Australia.  more info here

JulyCreativitEA

 

I am envisioning a long table ‘ala long italian lunch esq’ … strewn with art materials,

surrounded by women with less worry lines and more smile ones, a sense of PLAY, whilst holding a very sacred space of inner wise self soothingness.

China cups of coconut milk chai tea, or any number of other choices – a hug in a cup.

Snacks for lunch along the lines of delicious things you might find at a high tea … scones, cream & jam, lemon slice… cucumber sandwiches. . .  and more tea.

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# drawlikenooneisjudging

bye for now,

love Denise.

 

Personal Daily Light

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journal page denise daffara

Light Source

“We are needing to find and maintain our daily light, and that is what will charge us.”

Lee Harris and his most recent energy update have sparked me into wanting to make a post, a page, a memory tweaker, a sweet reminder note.

“If we forget to do it we get upset at human density, we get upset at the dark or the suffering side of the world without remembering we’re all here creating it and influencing it with our vibration.”

“So if you can indentify the things that LIGHT YOU UP or give you relief and apply some of them every day as either medicine to the part of you that’s struggling or support to the part of you that is here to go deeper with your purpose. Because that is ‘if you like’ an annual theme for this year – everybody on the planet, whether they’re spiritual or not, there is a strong sense of, everything is under review.”

“What is my purpose. Why am I here, what am I doing this for.” – Lee Harris

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I SO relate to this. I know I am a light ‘seeker and worker’. I understand the need and place for darkness, and I need daily light to see my way forward.

Not content to sit around in a funk for very long, I find that very exhausting and seemingly pointless. As I was listening to Lee’s update, and the idea of ‘what lights you up’ I instantly thought of the litte drawings I make of my inner child – Little dd. She puts me in touch with an inner innocence and my own experience here.

Drawing her and sharing her quirkyness with the world is a small commitment I can make to my own creative practice right now, encouraging myself to #drawlikenooneisjudging. In doing so, I trust, that others will also be encouraged to draw like noone is judging if that is something that lights them up.

image by Denise Daffara

This creative life is a devotion.

A devotion to bringing more light into the world.

.. holding a space where light is welcomed.

image by Denise Daffara

 

I have been finding it very challenging to hold on to my lighter self with all of the harshness unfolding and yelling across our news reals and social media.

I weep for the brokenness and rail against the negative patriarchal energy and blatant abuse of women and girls and minority groups. It’s really bloody awful out there.

I need ways of bringing joy into my own darkness, healing my own inner demons, so I will continue to seek out my personal daily light.

So when others pass by my digital home, they’ll see a light on, and teacups at the ready, creativitea served daily with love.

 

blessed be,

 

love Denise x

Little dd by Denise Daffara

Little dd’d very own facebook page.

 

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Messages in the Flowers

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I have devoted several hours of quiet contemplation time to making floral collages this week. (Oh sure, my inner critic thinks this is a decadent waste of time when there is ‘real work’ that could be getting done) but let me make a stand on behalf of CREATIVITY / CREATIVITEA and self healing!

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I am of the belief, that not all therapy takes place in an office with a therapist. A lot can happen with myself at my own art table. I’ve experimented with this far too many times and been gifted with many divine messages, inner calm and inspired ideas as a result.

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I’ve noticed how PINK MAGNOLIA’S were beaming out of the magazine pages for me to see and love … these are a new flower memory maker of my Mother’s that I hold close – she and Dad moved from an isolated old place into town in the last 8 years of her life and a large magnolia tree was seen from her kitchen window in the neighbours yard. She and I would pause beneath it and just love it’s beauty.

I was up very early on the weekend and hand wrote a letter to my Mother as I sat with a pot of tea before the sun rose as she was known to do quite regularly … and I told her I’d post it behind the magnolia tree.

When you glue larger images on the page leave a pocket ‘unglued’ where notes can be hidden inside… if that idea makes you smile especially.

Collage stitching

jam recipes are tucked in behind that tea setting there🙂

ohhhh warm scones, cream and jam with freshly brewed tea! mmmmmmm

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In this one below I can picture my sister and I sitting at this coffee table, and chatting… so… I’ve chatted on the pages beneath as though she IS here.. because that is something I can do, to keep in touch with the love that remains.

tucked in behind that book is a chocolate beetroot cake recipe.. magazines make such a beautiful display, I love to bring things that speak to my soul into my smash books where they hold memories with me and we make new ones too.

I believe that my writing and tucking things into my smash book / art journal, I’m setting intentions for new things to come to pass – intentional creativity ™ works like that. Something like writing notes to the Universe/Source/God perhaps. As well as appreciating what I already have in my life and heart memories.

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Speaking of new memories. I have a little character I call “Little dd” she is an outpouring of my own inner child, and sometimes mixed with my inner wise self.

This week I decided to give her, her own facebook page, because she and I have some creative projects to do and share in the coming months/years . . . so she let me know it was time she made herself more known out and about.

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If you’d like to find Little dd  on fb she is here. 

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That’s about it for today.

Perhaps you join me in the love of collage, and flower love language . . .

 

Warmest wishes

Denise

 

 

What is grieving?

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paperDollGrievingWhat is this thing called ‘grieving’?

I think it is something that goes on within our body whether we think or feel we are participating in it or not.

 

Grief is what happens when your love no longer has a place to go.

This resonated strongly with me when I heard it, on a recording by Tori Hartman I believe it was.

I have been having some interesting conversations since saying a final goodbye to my Mother mid January. The realisation that we grieve much more than the loss of a loved one is perhaps one of the most heart opening realisations.

To realise this grieving thing is not exclusively reserved for the death of a being, but for perhaps the death of our own dreams of being. Being something other than what we are, doing something other than what we find ourselves daily doing. Living and seeing things in ways we didn’t anticipate we would from the younger eyes we used to view the world through.

I think it was Carl Jung that said, ‘There is nothing more emotionally disturbing to a child than the unlived life of a parent.’ I can relate to this from the perspective of being the child and the parent . . . I feel such grief when I consider what I deem to be the unlived life of my Mother, and indeed my Father, although he is still living his life. I see from my perspective that she lived a life filled so much with suffering, so do I grieve that too? Involunteerily or unconsciously.. or with awareness?

my thought of grief : a complete feeling of powerlessness over what is being sensed, felt, thought.

Sometimes I am struck with sadness over what wasn’t as much as what was.

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I don’t really feel like I am grieving.. but how would I know, I do feel tired, and tired quite a lot … is that how my body grieves? I wonder.

I think perhaps.. grieving is as natural as loving, it flits into our awareness all the time, and it’s not until we pause and sit with it, that perhaps we may realise it’s messages for our heart and soul.

I am in the midst of wondering about this, there is nothing wrong, and nothing to fix. It just is. I just am.

If you would like to join a small group of seekers, feelers, heart tenders and me, there is a space being created in the form of an online offering, aka eCourse “Honouring Love & being with Loss”. 

Honouring Love & Being with Loss

You can read some more details here : it’s still being cooked.

love Denise x

. . .

*later that day . . . (I wrote the above section in the morning of Friday 15 April . . . )

now, after lunching with a very wise friend of mine . . . I am curious further, where are my tears, why do I find it so hard to let them fall. Where in my body is this grief hiding?

A wonder in progress.

D x

 

 

 

Overcoming a Mountain of Sh. . .

one week to go

 

I shared this image on my instagram earlier this week, and afterwards, when I slid the flyer away.. I saw a space.. and made a hill for my little dd to stand on, and then … these words flowed out of my pen.

mountain of shit

When you put yourself out there you often (sometimes) have to overcome a mountain of shit.

The last time I had an exhibition it was a big flop, fail, fuqup if you count on sales being your measure of success.

Wonders, doubt fear, worry, concern. Am I enough, will I be able to paint enough. Will anyone want to buy my paintings?

Perhaps not all of the time, but in the creative life I notice how much I am faced with my own inner demons. Self doubt has been a lurker for years, but I am pleased to report I found a way to quiet that one to be able to make some new paintings that I absolutey love . . . I’ve used this method before, I just listened to a different podcast… this time around it’s been the lovely Dee Wallace and her show Conscious Creation that has seen me through hours and hours of letting myself paint while my mind, and perhaps critical thinking self is busy listening to her show. And loving it!

I’m feeling optimistic and really quite calm amongst the sometimes sleeplessness of making lists in my head of what needs to be done.  But I wanted to share with you that it’s a challenge, a privilege, and gift as well.

Below are some of the works to be seen at next weeks Exhibition, and a link to our online facebook event

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This one is a repaint … underneath is a whole different painting I made in an online class with Pixie Lighthorse.. but I felt inspired to paint over that . . and leave the butterflies from the previous painting and see what wanted to happen . . . the branches with the birds also remained.

The new version reminds me a tiny bit of Monet with the feeling of movement, the peaceful sense of a secret garden, softness, femininity, Mary and her rosary links directly to my Mother. TakingFlightSigned

Another surprise to me addition that is featuring in my art is my series of petite paintings called SHE FEELS.

SPACE HOLDERS OF RAW EMOTION

I am really in love with these little space holders of raw emotion. This is one of the most freeing gifts I have given myself in the last year . . . time with paper and fabric cutout dolls which led to a whole series of expressions.

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also featuring at the upcoming exhibition

are two dear and talented friends

Jassy Watson and BJ Long.

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online viewing and sales via our facebook event.

 

well, bye for now dear reader,

thanks for stopping by,

Perhaps I’ll meet you at the gallery, or indeed online . . . life can be a bit mysterious like that these days.

love Denise.

Leaf me a alone

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This image encapsulates how I feel at the moment.. and for much of today.

It’s about everything, and nothing. I ‘have no right to be sad, upset, whatever’ when there is real suffering going on in the world, says one of my selves. It’s both true, and false.

Another is grieving the loss of my Mother, many of my selves maybe grieve that loss, who knows whether it’s normal to compartmentalise one’s selves in such a way.

I’m reading a book written by a neuro scientist Eben Alexander  who had a NDE (Near Death Experience) and he is now convinced heaven is real : hence his book titled “Proof of Heaven” .. of course I’m choosing to believe it, and then you google to get the link for this post and there’s a bunch of ‘so called’ stories giving the skeptic’s view of his story. Fuck I get over this constant too’ing and fro’ing of what the fuck is this all about anyway?

I have a deep knowing that we are so much more than our crazy minds give us credit for half of the time, and yet, I still succumb to a day of what feels like a ‘pathetic waste of precious time’ to be brutally honest, but it’s ‘what showed up today’.

“What is the gift in this?” I might ask myself.

nup. not ready to go there.

I’ll let gratitude filter back in, I’ll turn on some music. but for now, I’m going to press ‘publish’ so I can have done something today. Something. Not much, doesn’t change a life or save one, but it shows me I’m alive and willing to show up.

Even when the feels are not so fine.

love Denise.

p.s.

and the exhibition date, is looming, I’m freaking out that the new paintings I have been doing are not good enough, .. which leads to I’m not good enough.. so.. really.. it’s no mystery as to how the feeling of that image above comes about. It’s the critic, the self talk that isn’t kind, the feelings of fear and inadequacy stirred up from some long lost childhood time and triggered today.

And. This too shall pass.

 

 

 

 

Friday Night Fatigue – the good kind

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littledd painted out

That moment on a Friday night, your (my) studio is a complete mess… (see below) and a feeling of great satisfaction sweeps over your fatigued body and you have to STOP because to keep going in this state is simply asking for trouble.

Ruining some of my last several days work is not how I want to end this extraordinarily fulfilling week.

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I’m drawn here to make mention of it, as a celebration for mysel really, to remind myself that THIS CAN HAPPEN… I’m experimenting with a completely new palette than I’ve used before, I’ve banished ‘red’ from the room as far as using it in a painting in this new collection.. (thanks to my friend Nancy for that helpful idea)  too late for the Frida one.. she neeeeded her red dress and shoes.. and walking across the  red thread/ribbon ‘tight rope’

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Have you met Little dd ?

She’s my inner child who helps me express myself these days, she’s outspoken in a good way, unashamedly true to her heart .. my heart …

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You’ll find lots more of her on my instagram.

 https://www.instagram.com/denisedaffara/

I will share more of my new paintings sooooon,

they’re still in the incubation phase and tender place of not quite ready to be scrutinised . . . I want to bring them to a place where I KNOW in my heart I LOVE them, and so I’ll not be so easily swayed, disturbed, pissed off or perturbed by anyone’s elses opinions be they good, bad or indifferent  . . . one of the gems I learned in Tara Mohr’s book ‘PLAYING BIG’ is to not ever take too much notice of the criticism OR the praise.. let them be useful in their place, but not measures on which you base your self worth. Because that is fraught with disaster for a sensitive soul…. which most creatives i.e. humans, are.

I’ll share some little bits of larger works.. that feels doable . . .

I want to bring them to a place where I KNOW in my heart I LOVE them, and so I’ll not be so easily swayed, disturbed, pissed off or perturbed by anyone’s elses opinions be they good, bad or indifferent

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You may think by now that I should be over this kind of concern.. well… ever since school in my report card comments like “she’s too sensitive”, “easily distracted” … “talks too much” were frequent… so… I figure… this is just me. (hence #littledd drawings of self kindness arriving in my late forties for no other reason but to be a voice of love in my world.. and maybe the world of those who are drawn to her).

#drawlikenooneisjudging

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bye for now dear reader,

love

Denise xo

You’re invited to our

UPCOMING ART EXHIBITION

with two artist friends and myself

join the fb page here if you’d like to

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