Monday, January 16, 2017

when the muse shows up

Linking up today with other wild and free writers at Kate Motaung's place for the first Five Minute Friday of the new year. This week's prompt is middle.  Five minute Friday is a time when we write for five minutes straight without fancy edits. Just writing for the fun of it. Come on over to Kate's blog to find out how you can join in in 2017!




Sometimes you just don't know when the creative muse is going to show up. It was in the middle of the week before Christmas. I was on the 2nd day of the worst cold I've had in my life. I was sitting on the sofa with my journal and a cup of tea and the muse showed up. 

I had wanted to write a short story for my daughter's short story collaboration called Meet Cute. But, I told her, I just don't have a story ready. I was also hesitant because what if it wasn't good enough for her to pick for her book?? How would I feel?





Well, all of that went by the wayside that morning in December. My pen started moving across my journal pages as fast as you can imagine. I couldn't really believe it myself. I just kept writing and writing and it was fun. I wasn't editing as I went along either. I wasn't scrutinizing my writing. I was just having fun and letting the words tumble out of me and through my pen and onto the page. 

And, I had let myself off the hook. I had told myself it didn't matter if she, as the editor of the Meet Cute book, chose my meet cute story. I decided it mattered just to write a story for fun and see what happened after that.

That's when the creativity usually shows up, doesn't it? It shows up when it isn't pressured to show up. It shows up when it doesn't have to be "included" or perfect. It wants to be free to just "be". 

I loved writing the story called Matt and the Beauty, based on how I met my future husband. 

And, you know what? My daughter really liked it.*

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Thanks for stopping by today! It's lovely to have you here,

Anne

*My short story, Matt and the Beauty, will be published along with 18 other short stories with the "meet cute" theme! Meet Cute is a collaboration of short stories along with illustrations from separate artists from around the world. So excited for my daughter Kara Landhuis, editor. Find out more at meetcutebook.com!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

What we want most this Christmas

What can you do NOW? What do you control and what is your concern but out of your control?


These are things to ponder during these days of gatherings and special moments. Even good things can bring stress--the stress of self-imposed expectations
--threats on self of perfectionism.


KNOW that you are enough.
You. Are. Enough.
Even if you did nothing else but be you, 
you are enough.


BOW--Bend the knee to the One who made you and calls you by name.
He loves you.
He came for you.
He died for you.
He rose for you.
He's declared you good. Very good.

Rest in that knowing in gratitude.

ALLOW people to be exactly who they are. No more, no less.
This is harder said than done, but will decrease stress and promote inner peace in your soul.



Isn't that what we want most this Christmas? Without our health and peace, we have nothing.


Allow yourself space
--to think
--to dream
--to know you're loved
--to know you're enough

on this crazy spinning ball called earth.

Stop off for some moments of calm and 
bow
now 
and allow.

Blessings and thank you!!

Anne

Thanks for stopping by. Linking up late to Five Minute Friday with a tribe of writers each week at Kate Motaung's blog. Stop over there to see what others have written on the prompt, NOW.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Surrender to a moment

Linking up late for Five Minute Friday over at Kate Motaung's blog. This week's prompt is "surrender". 


God, thank you for Mr. Cardinal who just swooped by and flew to a branch in Mr. Evergreen. He's been sitting there for at least a minute, bobbing up and down on the tree branch swaying in the wind.  It's definitely as if he's there on assignment from You to me. 

He's still there. In all of his red gloriousness. 
Feathers standing out against the green back drop. 

Now, it's close to two minutes. He's still there. 

What is he thinking about? Does he know he's brought me to tears because of his presence? I surrender to this moment in time where this beauty has flown in and perched right in my view.





He's still there. It's got to be three minutes. 

My tears are flowing freely in gratitude for this gift that has lifted me out of rumination to gratitude and awe. He's perfectly content in his world. Surveying in silence and stillness, he looks to be the King of his kingdom. His feathers puffed out in contentment, he must feel safe.

Probably almost four minutes now, of his presence in my evergreen.

His contentment and presence startles me. 

Startling me out of negativity and into joy and peace and the thought that all is well and all will be well.

He knows he's enough just as he is.
I know that I'm enough, too.

This pause has unraveled anxiety about what is to come. I've been instead invited into the moment that is.

I surrender.

************************************

Blessings to you, 
Anne

Saturday, November 19, 2016

It's time

It's time for more beauty and less chaos.
It's time to watch the birds
free, 
flying, 
flitting at the feeders
It's time to smile at the squirrel antics and stop scolding them for stealing the bird seed.

It's time to show compassion to animals and people.
Even people I disagree with.
Compassion and joy and enjoyment of all that is around me.


It's time to surround myself with 

calm
grace 
and 
freedom.

These have become my dearest friends.
Friends who encourage the best in me. Friends who gently guide me.
Friends who lead me to truth.





It's time to believe the truth about myself and others.
It's time to give myself the worthy messages I'm so deserving of.



If I don't celebrate my worth, who will?
If I don't celebrate and believe my worth, how am I capable of celebrating yours?


I am worthy of all good things.
I am worthy to be treated well.
I am important and my gifts are important and worthy to be shared.

And so are yours.

Let's celebrate beauty
let's celebrate worth
let's celebrate with love and compassion all that is good within us and in each other and the world.

We'll be so much better for it.

**********************************************************

Thanks for joining me today for Five Minute Friday! I'm joining with other wild and free writers over at Kate Motaung's blog. Come on over and check it out and even join in. We write for five minutes on the prompt of the week. This week's prompt is enjoy.

Blessings to you today,

Anne

Friday, October 7, 2016

taking the test

The months since June have felt like one test after the other. Tests of character and resolve.

Tests of integrity and living by truth. My truth.

More than ever, there have been tests. seemingly endless. Moments for tea and breathing and living in-between. But, tests.

I've been learning more about myself since June. I'm learning old patterns and unlearning them. 

Learning new patterns of self-care and self-compassion.
Learning new ways to give myself permission.

Permission to be alone.
Permission to heal.
Permission to be myself....






to create
live my own life
beat my own drum


and listen for what's next.

Is there ever a time in life where we know, without certainty what's coming next?

No.

Sometimes we have an idea. We've dreamed a dream. We've made our best laid plans. 



Oh yes, we. do. plan, don't we?



But, in reality, the only thing we know for sure is what is right now. What's right in front of us.

Taking personal tests of bravery, courage, fortitude, steadfastness, creativity, longing, looking, learning and more have been in my recent past.

I'm guessing more of those things are coming right around the corner.

I know I'm up for it, good for it. Gonna show up for it.

How about you? What tests are you facing these days?

Thanks for stopping by!

Blessings to you.

Anne

Linking up with other writers for Five Minute Friday where we write for five minutes straight with no fancy edits. Stop in over at Kate Motaung's blog to see what it's all about! This week's prompt is "test".

Saturday, September 24, 2016

When I'm five

I'm at the table for coffee time. I'm with my parents and the old people. 

I'm always with the old people. They are my dad's aunt and uncle. But, these old people are like grandparents to me. They raised my dad from age 16 after he came to the New Country from the Old Country. His aunt taught him English.

I love my great aunt for that. She is nice. She is lovely.

I'm five. The adults at the table are dunking their rusks into their Sanka, which has been laced with a sugar cube or two. I can still hear the clank clank of the spoon sliding against the side of the coffee cup (always a cup on a saucer) as they would stir in the sugar. Rarely cream.





I'm five. Life is good. I am an only child so far. My brother would be born the next year. I get all the attention from my parents and the old people who we are with. A lot. I get all the attention from people at church.

I have a farm with a swing set. I like to swing. Alone.  I fly high into the air, but always come back down. Only to fly again.

I am five and I don't know what's coming soon. 

I don't know that my bedroom will change from the one that I've always known. The one with the yellow sweet peas on the walls, my white four poster bed, and where my brother's crib is on the opposite wall as mine. 

The bedroom where the house is so old that corn cobs were used as insulation. 

This would be the reason my mom, in the coming years, after the tornado came through my life and I was moved out of my farm, 
then moved back, 
and then back and forth...

this would be the reason my mom buys fancy fire detectors for our ceilings, so that she can feel like I'm safe. 

Because she is not with me.

********************************************

Blessings to you!

Thanks for joining me for Five Minute Friday. Today, I took the prompt "five" into mini memoir mode. I'm linking up with other courageous writers over at Kate Motaung's blog. Come on over and see what other writers have written for this week's prompt!

Anne

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Listen to your heart

You should do what people want
Listen to your heart.

You should be more helpful.
Listen to your heart.

You should care more about what others think of you.
Listen to your heart.

You could live your life pleasing other people, forget your dreams.
Listen to your heart.

You should bury the hatchet and pretend nothing ever happened.
Listen to your heart.

You should follow this career path, not that one, because it's more suitable.
Listen to your heart.

You will only be hurting yourself if you don't do what they say.
Listen to your heart.

You'll be sad and all alone if you choose that.
Listen to your heart.

You won't be liked, admired or respected.
Listen to your heart.

You're not good enough to do what other people do. You'll see.
Listen to your heart.

You should take care of others, even when they can take care of themselves.
Listen to your heart.

The voices.
They are loud.
They are many.
They arrive unannounced and uninvited.
They laugh.
They sneer.
They try to manipulate and control.

But, I won't listen to them.
I won't.
I will not.

I will listen to my heart.
It's there that I'll find truth and integrity.
I will listen to my heart.

Blessings,
Anne

Sharing on a theme that's been ringing in my ears this week. Linking up with other writers for Five Minute Friday. Last Friday's prompt was "listen". I listened and wrote. Come on over to Kate Motaung's blog to read what others have written on this prompt!
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