Good morning and welcome to Coffee Chat.
Setting the scene this hello I am a mombie from the walking dead Monday morning...

Girl need some help this morning looking alive!
I spent almost the entirety of Sunday recuperating from the Girl Guides sleepover.     We had a lot of fun - the girls were fantastic.   We made delicious brownies and these beautiful apple blossom pastries so they could earn a cooking badge.   Then settled them down with a movie... or two.... dear god please go to sleep during one of them!

But I think I may be too old for this sleepover stuff.    Some of them were still awake after midnight, and then the early-to-bedders also proved early risers.
I felt like I had encountered the plague and spent Sunday in basically in bed.
Shout out to you teachers who spend 5 days a week the entire school year with the little rugrats precious wee ones.   You're hard core metal in my book.

Things such as this always have that positive/negative push/pull vibe about them because a) they do require a lot of work from the adults to make it happen and in terms of supervision, and it's all volunteer, and b) the sheer excitement of the girls often covers over your own sheer exhaustion -- if you just keep in mind that investing in young girls lives will have a bigger impact latter.

As often is the case; you take the good, you take the bad and there you have it.
Life.  Lived.

Time out for Mom

Tuesday, January 17th, 2017

It's a New Year! 
What is one positive thing about 2017, 
and one negative thing about the forthcoming year?  

 In perusing around the internet over my coffee Sunday, I couldn't help but have an overwhelming sense of sadness and defeat wash over me.   It seems as though a feeling of gloom, or perhaps even doom has settled across the nations.  Wondering what the future holds?

A new year should be a time for anticipation.   Of getting your ducks in a row in hopes of having a rewarding and satisfying year ahead.   Often that does entail looking to the past, to ensure your future steps are successful.   But what happens when the past appears better than the foreseeable future?   It seems many cannot muster up this feeling of positive anticipation for 2017.  
HOWEVER, I say all new days are new chances and new opportunities, IF we make the most of them.

Dear America, I want to have a little talk with you.... as a loving neighbour and friend.
You are getting a new President soon.
And yes America, often times he has been a complete douche, asshat, uninformed bully.
I cannot imagine a President continuing on his personal Twitter in the manner that Donald Trump has been doing this past year.   More whiny, petulant child than Leader In Command.
For sure America, I can see your concerns.
But here's the thing.

He. Is. Your. President.
Like it or not; as a Nation you are going to have to come to terms with this truth.  And his leadership.... questionable as it might be.  Or, maybe it won't be; only time will tell.

You see, when my children act like little creeps, I don't loudly berate them in public, call them names, or take to my social media to call out their bad behaviour.   I don't let the behaviour go unnoticed, unchecked, or unpunished if need be; but I proceed in a manner that is Instruction.   Not humiliation.  Condemnation.  Unloving.

Name calling and abuse only increases the divide between us and exacerbates existing tensions.   Insults only breed mutual contempt, and that is not an environment conducive to learning; or proceeding peacefully.    You cannot expect peace, if you show up with weapons!   And if you are acting like a hammer, than all you will see everywhere, is nails.

So let's not smash one another with insults.  Or labels.  Or prejudice.  It won't bring about the change that is needed.   Show your new President the Nation you want to be, in how you not only behave towards one another; but towards HIM.
You can still call out injustices, racism, sexism, and bad policy without resorting to the same tactics as the one you vehemently oppose.    You know the saying:  if you go down into the mud, you come up dirty as the pig!

 America isn't easy. America is advanced citizenship. You gotta want it bad, 'cause it's gonna put up a fight. It's gonna say "You want free speech? Let's see you acknowledge a man whose words make your blood boil, who's standing center stage and advocating at the top of his lungs that which you would spend a lifetime opposing at the top of yours. You want to claim this land as the land of the free? Then the symbol of your country can't just be a flag; the symbol also has to be one of its citizens exercising his right to burn that flag in protest. Show me that, defend that, celebrate that in your classrooms. Then, you can stand up and sing about the "land of the free"
~ Andrew Shepherd, The American President

Within the framework of American democracy there exists channels for you to voice your opinions, concerns, and calls for change.  Use them!
Yes, your President seems like a big negative right now, but you have a choice in how YOU also will proceed in making your Nation great -- with him.   So be a helping guide towards the end you seek. 

 As I write this post, it is Martin Luther King day.   A man who had a dream.   And although it seems so very far from that dream right now; as long as you remember it - it still lives.

But America, you must live out your creed if you wish the dream to come true.

Love Canada,
Always Got Your Back

*Your post does not have to be about politics!   It can be anything you want regarding the year ahead.  I just had this on my heart after seeing hate upon hate in comments on the web.*

Our job is to love people. When it hurts. When it’s awkward. When it’s uncool and embarrassing. Our job is to stand together, to carry the burdens of one another and to meet each other in our questions.

- Jamie Tworkowksi 

Next Week:    Is there anything special you are looking forward to in 2017?
I apologize that I have not been around to visit your blogs yet this week, or those of you participating in the Fill Ins -- but it's been a busy week preparing for a Girl Guide Sleepover Camp.

Which means I am currently hiding somewhere in the dark corners of a church basement, from over a dozen young girls, to get this post done.

Hide and Seek Level: Master!
They probably gonna find me....

Whatcha doin?
And if that ain't the true word of life with a cat.   He's either winding around my legs or rubbing against my face while in down dog.

So I'd better be quick today in sharing some recent Art.
As always tends to happen, Art is often inspired by Life, which if you know anything about me results in  Artful Living.

But first you gotta go find the Art.

 A purchase I made from a young man at a Native Reserve in Northern Ontario this summer.   This is how he explained the print.

The spirit bird is flying in the sky. This spirit bird has been summoned by a shaman to come visit. The circle is the chant the shaman is singing. The shaman is praying, and the symbols in the wings of the spirit bird is what is being asked.
“Have you a chant in your heart that is calling your spirit guide for help?”

Yes!!  I don't want to hide... I am always seeking!

 Then you get inspired and let it flow.

into the slumbering birch I murmur my ballad
behind great conquering eyes the wolf howls back
he sings and I sing;  the melody echoed
among the bark and the boughs -
through sunlight and sap,
proudly displayed golden
within these sacred woods, sighing all around
and trembling at the tones - I lie in wait,
until the spirit guide calls; 
or the evening star melts away

 And get inspired some more.
Remember how I said I wanted a new tattoo?   Do you know how many tattoo images are on Google?    The struggle is real.
So.... I decided to design my own by combining several ideas I saw together into one image.

Also remember, I cannot draw... this is the rough concept only.  I will get some other more talented person to draw the real image.

 A raven feather quill - because I write.   The raven is the messenger that brings the words.
And the wolf because wolves are cool right?     I might change that image because I rather feel more related to the Lynx.   Who is an animal that hides in wait.  Patiently.  Still.  

Okay, better run before they wreck this beautiful old church.
Pretty sure it's snack time anyway :)

Happy Arting!

Can you believe I just realized that I did not do a Wordless Wednesday post this week?
I guess I am still stuck in the holiday mindset!

Here you go.

 Little Waffle thief!!
Actually, it was the whip cream Cashew was after, but I think he ultimately decided he did not like it, and thus returned to his daily activity of singing the song of his people at the front door.
Despite the fact he doesn't actually want outdoors for more than 3.2 seconds, at which point he realizes Canada is #$#@Y$U cold.

The struggle is oh so real my friends!

On to the Fill Ins because I got birthday parties and Girl Guide sleepovers this weekend and laundry and packing beckons.

The Friendly Fill-Ins are four fun and easy statements to complete. Ellen of 15andmeowingprovides the first two statements and the final two are offered by myself. We try to make sure they will be fun to both answer and share. On Friday, the linky will be posted at or about 12:00 AM. Please come back, link up, and share your thoughts! Here are this week's statements with the blanks:
Week 36: January 13, 2017

1. My guiding word for 2017 is  LINGER.    And I have been doing it too much this week and next week I will have to add the word Balance to the description.   But for now...
 2.    I have never attended any kind of class reunion.    Mainly because I am unaware of my high school ever having had one!
3. Truth be told I am superstitious about - I don't know if it is so much "superstition, but I do believe in a kind of karma in the sense that if you put negative or hateful things out in the world, you are likely to both attract and receive it back to you.

  Also, never put your cowboy boots on a wood table.
4. Lately, I have been  reading a lot because I feel a bit lazy after the holidays.  I have plenty that I would like to do - including more reading and LOTS of writing... but then I wake up and MEH.   I believe we call it the Winter Blues, but I'm gonna turn that nonsense to a rainbow soon!
 Have a great weekend everyone!
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