What Does Fear Look Like?

Posted on April 20th, 2012 by & filed under A Year With Myself, Be Inspired, Everything Miz Meliz

I can’t put a face on fear.  I can’t picture it at all.

I can identify many images, thoughts and feelings with fear. . .

Dark spaces

Dusty corners

Frightening sounds

Glowing lights

Did you hear that?

Shadowy figures

Whispers

That feeling that someone is watching me

Eerie gusts of wind

A cold chill

A bad taste in my mouth

A sense that something bad is about to happen

Those days when everything goes wrong

Waiting for test results

Getting a phone call late at night

The cats are acting weird again

Getting chills down my spine

Getting that feeling in my gut

My knees are shaking

Feeling a tremor, is it the big one?

Getting called to the boss’ office

Hearing the words, “We need to talk.”

Hearing a sonic boom

Hearing sirens

Hearing thunder

Hearing random fireworks. . . or, is that a gun shot?

Watching the news

Feeling a lump

Thinking about death

Wondering, “What if?”

How do I react to fear?

I’m scared.  CLAIM IT

I’m worried.  ACKNOWLEDGE IT

I’m unsure.  FACE IT

What’s the worst that can happen?  QUESTION IT

Hold me!  SEEK REASSURANCE

Whatever happens, it is going to be okay.  ACCEPT IT

Just breathe!  PROCESS IT

I can do this.  BE CONFIDENT

I can get through this.  BE FAITHFUL

I am ready!  BE COURAGEOUS

I believe in myself.  BE GRATEFUL

It’s well-known that fear and gratitude cannot coexist.  “Gratitude requires us to stay in the now. Fear is living in the future. That’s why gratitude and fear cannot coexist. If you fill yourself with gratitude you will notice that your anxious thoughts and fear dissolve.”

Fearing the unknown (or uncomfortable) in a business venture or relationship can be dispelled by true grit and courage. When we are facing our deepest darkest fears and demons this feeling of doom can be lifted by thoughts of gratitude.  Count your blessing next time you start to get worried.  Fill your heart with gratitude and the fears will disappear.

"I'm on top of the world!"

Calling all Creatives

Posted on April 19th, 2012 by & filed under A Year With Myself, Be Inspired, Everything Miz Meliz

It’s funny how the word “Creative” is now a name for people who are creative.  I can say, “I am hanging out with the creatives today.” That’s new, isn’t it?

I have had a huge burst and subsequent constant flow of creativity in the past few months.  It started around Thanksgiving.  About this time last year, just after Spring Break, I was approached by a friend to help coordinate a fundraising event at my church.  It was a big deal and I put a lot of work into it.  A LOT!  It was a major success and it is probably what started me on my way “back” from the doldrums and into my creative flow. It helped that I had some left over supplies like feathers and beads!

Blogging, writing poetry, taking pictures, making video slide shows, doing crafts, making jewelry, making costumes, decorating for parties – these are all creative expressions that I enjoy.  That part is important.  Everything I do expresses who I am.  When I create something, it becomes an extension of me.  It contains a part of me.  It is what I do to enjoy life.  Being productive, creating things and giving them to the people who I love is what I do.  It is who I am.

The Beauty That I See Becomes an Expression of Me

I don’t have a muse.  I don’t think I need one.  I like to make things when the feeling strikes or when I get an idea.  Sometimes that is late at night or at an inopportune time.  I have to hold it in my head or write it down until I can work on it.  I don’t think I could ever make a living – or work for someone else – as an artist.  In that case, I would need a muse to motivate me!  The best part of being “a creative” is that it is entirely up to me when I want to make something, how to make it, if I finish it, what ever “it” is, it’s all up to me.  That is how I like it!

 

Centerpiece From Mardi Gras Party

 

 

Photos vs. Pics #MizMeliz #Photography

Posted on April 18th, 2012 by & filed under Be Inspired, Everything Miz Meliz

I’ve been getting into cell phone photography lately. Especially since I got my iPhone. I have four different camera apps. Since I learned a little about photography and used an old Nikon SLR in the 90’s, I feel like I know what I am doing. Lately, I have enjoyed taking pictures of flowers. They are so beautiful, colorful and stand still when you ask them to pose. I recently had the opportunity to have some of my photos appear on another blog! Check it out!

http://mngirlinla.com/2012/04/09/week-2-of-cell-phone-photography-entries/

I also started a Tumblr account and I am trying to post one picture everyday.

http://www.tumblr.com/blog/mizmeliz

More of my pics can be found at my Flickr account. . .

http://www.flickr.com/photos/mizmeliz/

What I love most about photography is that it is another creative way to express myself that I can enjoy and bring joy to others. I have been influenced by some amazing artists such as R.C. Gorman and Georgia O’Keefe. Even though they are painters, their work inspires me and I like to try to match life to the paintings that they did that depicted life in such an amazing way. Yes, I used “amazing” twice here! I am amazed and astonished by the beautiful colors and tones that I am surrounded by every day.

Georgia O’Keefe Painting

Recently, I met a photographer that I have connected with on many levels. She uses her photography of flowers to help patients feel better. I first saw her work in 2007 at the Religious Education Congress in Anaheim, CA. I purchased a set of cards with prints of her roses. At the same conference in March of this year (2012,) I saw an exhibit of flower photography and I recognized the work. It was then that I realized the photography I was drawn to was highly influenced by this artist, Elizabeth Thoman, CHM. I found myself at her booth in the exhibit hall quite by accident. As I began to speak with the attendant at the booth asking if this was the same artist that I saw in 2007, I realized it was the artist herself! I showed her some of my pics and asked her how she got started. We “clicked” almost instantly.

Liz invited me to have dinner with her and over drinks we got to know each other and it became clear that we had much in common and could help each other with a few things. She showed me her camera and how she composes her photos. I showed her my iPhone and how I use post processing to get some of the same effects that her traditional photography skills produce. We discussed why we love taking pictures of flowers. For her, it has a real purpose. See her website to get the deets! She is an amazing person!

www.HealingPetals.org

Liz Thoman, Photography

There is a definite difference between photos and “pics.” I take pics. I snap things that I see when I see them. Later, I clean up the images and play with them and, if I am lucky, I get a pretty picture that I can share. Liz takes photos. She arranges the flowers on a table in her kitchen and uses the “magic hour” available light in the morning to capture the immense beauty of the handpicked flower in it’s best light. She doesn’t use film, so no developing. Her camera is digital, like mine. The main difference is in the preparation and planning.

I hope you enjoy my pics!

Copyright 2012 Melissa Reyes, Photography

photo by Melissa Reyes copyright 2012 http://mizmeliz.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/cropped-april-2012-049.jpg?resize=950%2C264

Color Splash Photo by Melissa Reyes

 

Easter Egg Craft Time!

Posted on April 2nd, 2012 by & filed under Blog Venture, Everything Miz Meliz

I’ve always liked decorating eggs for Easter.  In fact, I enjoy it so much, I have even made them for Christmas gifts and other occasions!  Years ago, I learned how to “blow out” an egg before decorating it and make it last forever.  I love adding to my collection every few years using new designs and new processes.

A few weeks ago I saw an international craft exhibit at the Religious Education Congress in Anaheim, CA.  I loved the Lithuania table!  I was inspired by the delicate intrinsic designs of the Lithuanian Easter Eggs.

This tree is full of blown out eggs that look hand etched with pretty lace-like designs. Every one is unique.

I figured I could give it a try.  So, I took out all my tools and some supplies and set to work.  In order to make an egg that looks a little like the Lithuanian Eggs pictured above, all I really needed was a dyed blown out egg, a crayon and an exacto knife.  I set to work etching a design.

My husband brought up some how-to videos with some amazing in-depth procedures to making the beautiful eggs in the traditional Lithuanian style.  It involved special tools, wax, and chemicals.  Um, I would be wiling to try it, but I like making my crafts with things that I already have in my cupboard and tool box.

I have made eggs using chicken, goose, and robin eggs.  I put them in tissue paper and store them in a plastic storage box and they look like new year after year.  A few of these are about twenty years old. I’ve saved one or two of each year’s set for my own collection.  I like to give them away at the holidays, and the Easter Bunny has been known to hide them for the annual Easter Egg Hunt!

Here are some of my favorites:

 

Since it took hours to make one egg etched with a simple design using an exacto knife, my hubby just happened to come home from the hobby store with a little surprise for me. . .

My March Madness

Posted on March 30th, 2012 by & filed under Be Inspired, Everything Miz Meliz

My plan for the month of March was to focus on clearing up the clutter in my home.  I made a plan of action.  I even took some before pictures in hopes that I would have some radical improvement and be able to show the after photos as well.  I was willing to own up to my issues, claim them, proclaim my mission and expose myself in an effort to improve my situation.  I felt as though I had a problem that needed to be fixed.  What better time than the start of Spring to clean up and get organized?  I decided to be accountable for my plan.  I had the best intentions.  I wanted to make a change and I was willing to commit to it and attack it with a sense of urgency.  I hoped by stating my intentions and challenging myself, I would make some effort to change and it might make a difference.

Well . . . I don’t know what happened! ???  %$&*!

Lucky for me, it was a two-part mission.  I also wanted to discover the reasons I allow clutter to pile up around me, why, why, why do I do let crap pile up and why does my family turn a blind eye, put up with it, and participate in it?  I decided to take a good long look at this common issue, figure out how serious the demons in my life are, consider the fact that I fall into the self-pity trap, and all the other stuff I lay on myself. . . self-doubt, self-soothing, fear, self-hatred.  What are the steps to turning it around?

I did give this a lot of thought.  I did come to some conclusions.  I’ll get to that in a minute.

The last step in my plan of action for the month was to make a commitment to keep it clean;  clean up my act not just my
house, take responsibility and take charge.  I feel like a winner in this category!

I always like to celebrate successes, any improvement is a step in the right direction!  Was there an improvement?  You bet!  I did some stuff around the house.  I saw the floor of my bedroom!  I even vacuumed!  I remember now how much I hate the color of the carpet.  But, I did do it.  And I know I can do it again.  For a few glorious days, things were clean and organized and it felt great!

I did learn what motivates me to keep things clean. Mainly, it’s about having things “in order.”  I think clearly in a clean environment.  I like things neat and tidy.  I hate trash and junk and I like things to be put away where they belong.  It is a never ending job.  It will never stay done on it’s own.  It will never be finished.

Do systems of organization work for me? Not really.  Implementing a system is hard to do.  The whole object is making things easier, right?  So, I found that working within the habits and patterns of my family’s way of doing things works best for us.  Do I need to make any adjustments? Yes, yes, yes.  And like I said, it was a step in the right direction.  A baby step, but definitely a step forward.

There are two things I know for sure about the clutter in my house.  Number one. . . it’s my mess and sometimes I like things just the way they are.  Number two. . . I should hire a housekeeper!

In researching how to clean up the clutter, I found a few things that were helpful (well, at least interesting!) . . .

Here are some ideas from the domestic gurus at Better Homes and Gardens magazine for gaining control of common home clutter zones.

Let storage components climb the walls of your home office, and rearrange your work space so regularly used supplies are accessible and others are out of the way.

Use the “handle it once” ruleto keep papers from piling up. Immediately toss, file, pass on or mail off paperwork rather than revisiting it later. Labeled hanging files provide a quick, tidy place to stash paperwork.

Correspond via phone or e-mailto prevent a paperwork backlog.

Stash office supplies out of sight.Choose small-scale tape dispensers, staplers, pencil sharpeners and the like; full-size ones hog more space.

Store clips and rubber bands by the batch. Spice jars, secured with commercial grade hook-and-loop tape under cabinets, will do nicely.

Put an end to a jumble of jewelry in the bathroom, bedroom or closet with a ceramic egg tray found in the kitchen supply aisle. Tuck earrings and necklaces away in little cups so they will never get lost or separated again.

Reserve a drawer in the family room for board games. A divided bin is a winning solution for corralling all those tiny game pieces.

Replace door panels with pegboard in the laundry room for storage on both sides of the door.

Build plywood cubbies in the garage to span an entire wall. Be sure to attach them to studs.

Add adjustable shelves in the garage to accommodate camping gear and other bulky stuff. Smaller knickknacks and holiday ornaments are for stackable containers.

Ask yourself these questions when deciding what to keep and what to throw out: Has it expired? Is it used? Is it a duplicate? Is it a good fit?

A great tip:

Read more:

The psychology of clutter – The Denver Posthttp://www.denverpost.com/recommended/ci_8060057#ixzz1nTaQr8RX

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