Late to the posting but still within my deadline! Whew!! :)
My father, who lives in Australia is in the country and has been staying with us for much of the week since we got back from weekend adventuring, and I have been soaking him in and spending time with him and the children.
But I have still been working on pages (if not taking photos of them and posting!).
Here are my pages and reflections from this week.
This week spent a lot of time looking back at our childhood.
First of all we looked at favourite things in our rooms when we were younger and then what we loved now.
I got to “choose” (there was much discussion during the choosing process) the colours for the last room I lived in while at home, and I picked orange in the end. It wasn’t the orange I had in mind, but I loved that I had had some role in the paint colour on my walls. I also loved the fact that that room had an old defunct chimney. My room had been an extension at some stage, and they had built it around an old chimney (the fireplace was long gone). It was papered over but I loved the quirkiness of it. I had a picture hanging on it like a display wall and it made me ridiculously happy. Now the thing in my room that makes me happiest is a floral arm chair in my little quiet reading corner I have claimed (that may or may not have become storage for other things until they are put away!).
After travelling back to what I loved about my room when I was little (which I struggled with), we hung out a bit in the past coming up with achievements, favourite foods and attributes. This took a wee while, and then while I was discussing with Dad he remembered a few other things that could have easily made it on to my lists as well. Especially my favourite foods.
I once won a boxed set of the Chronicles of Narnia books and they are still among my prized possessions though looking a bit worn for wear as they have been read and reread over the past decades. My favourite foods could have extended way past this list!! I finally decided on my Nana’s vanilla biscuits which were Huge with sultana’s in them. I loved when she baked them. Toffee and date pudding which I very rarely had, I think the first time was in a restaurant when I was a wee thing but I loved it, the hot caramel sauce…YUM. Still makes me smile. Homemade fried rice that my mother made, I always claimed leftovers for lunch the next day (or breakfast!).
Brandy snaps which I love. I remember when I was very little making dinner for Dad with my sister while we were staying with him, and we chose brandy snaps, so he took us out to get ingredients (brandy snaps and cream) and we made a plate full for dinner. Dad said it had taken us a surprisingly long time and it turned out we had also helped ourselves to a can of his bear which we had shared between us! Such a delicious memory, and I love brandy snaps even now. And mince on toast, mince spread on toast and lightly toasted in the oven. My father also reminded me of my Nanny’s fry bread (a bit like a fried scone) which we ate with lashings of golden syrup, and I always asked her to make them for us when we were visiting, and so easily could have slipped on my list had I remembered them when I was compiling the list!)
From childhood to looking at bad habits, both overt ones and the quiet sneaky ones. Without judgment considering the pay off for those habits, and what we get out of it. This took a lot of journaling, and the insights were a slap in the face for what I was getting out of them. Things I hadn’t considered, and this exercise has definitely given me much pause to think about.
Then we had to go through and make lists, of people we admire and secretly admire. I have to say I struggled with that. I couldn’t think of people I secretly admire, I have no problem with admiring who I admire, and don;t have a list of “shoulds” with who I should or shouldn’t admire. They are who they are. So I spent a lot of time in my journal writing about “secret” admiring, and wondering who I was going to write. In the end I decided on a few people close to me, like the children especially different aspects of them that I adore. But I don’t have secret people. On the other side of some of the doors is journaling and in some cases there is journaling on the page underneath as well as I was distilling what qualities I was gravitating towards at the moment I selected people.
We then had to look at people we wish we could have met who have died, and those that we would want to hang out with for a while in eternity. The people I wanted to meet who were dead were all quite famous (or infamous!), artists like Frida Kahlo, Jackson Pollock and Picasso, and also Minnie Dean. The first and only woman to be hung in New Zealand. I did a research report on her when I was a tiny thing, before there was a lot of information about her (now there are books) and I have always been fascinated by her story.
The people I would choose to hang out with in eternity for a while were actually all my grandparents. Things I wish I had asked them, stories I would dearly love to collect. This surprised me a little I wasn’t expecting them to come up and before I got to the exercise properly in my journal I was tossing around other ideas, but when I started writing it was my grandparents and a couple of my great grandmothers that I wanted to see for any length of time.
Here is one of the doors open (not the one with any words, just another round of representative faces on the other door.
I have done the morning pages every day, and the processing of things that happened has been useful (especially this week). Sometimes it is much like a giant waffly, rambly to-do list and I am wondering if I am doing it right because Julia Cameron often states not to show others the morning pages (because of criticism of the early writings) and I can’t imagine anything of worth that people would find in mine that I would show them, but I am counting my three pages writing as done in spite of my wonderings! My artist date this week was a good long soak in a HOT geothermal mineral spa while we were away last weekend that was one of my highlights of the year. So divine and I had it all to myself for a good long while.