(almost) weekly letters from my heart to you
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Water Your Mama Soul is a 10-day course where you explore ways to be right here in this moment and find the space to choose love... for yourself... for those around you... for this life you're choosing to live each day. You'll take photos and journal a bit and notice what you need each day. You'll reconnect with yourself. You'll give yourself the gift of remembering you. We begin June 1st! Learn more and register here.

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The new whole heart talismans are in the shop! 

Monday
Jun292015

what I'm bringing into my dig site

As more than 350 people get ready to jump into their Inner Excavation dig sites next Monday, I wanted to share what I'm bringing with me for this round of the Inner Excavate-along.

This is similar to the group of items I brought with me the last time around, but there are a few new fun additions. I decided to put them all in one of my blessings baskets so that I can easily grab them for an afternoon at the park or the backyard. I'm notorious for piling things on top of things, so these baskets are a huge help to keep projects that I work on outside the studio all on one place.

Here's an upclose look at the supplies.

And here are the details:

  • I'm using the same journal I used previously. It's a Picadilly sketchbook, and it has a lot of pages and is only about 25% full right now. And I just spotted this same one at a crazy clearance price at Barnes and Noble! (You can check if they have it at your local store too.) Here's a similar journal at Amazon.
  • And yes, I covered that whole journal cover with washi tape and then covered the ends on the inside with a large piece of scrapbook paper. I heart washi tape. So I'm bringing some more along with me. My current favorites are this set from MT and this chevron stripey set my One Move Retreat gals will recognize.
  • If I feel moved to stamp any words (like chapter titles or simple prompts), I'm going to use these lowercase stamps.
  • Of course my current favorite Staedtler pens are coming along.
  • I've gathered up a few coin envelopes, manila tags, and other little envelopes and scrapbook papers (and I might dive into my stash as needed).
  • Because I've been really into watercolor washes and writing with watercolors, I'm tucking in watercolors (similar to these; mine our originally from Target but they don't seem to carry them) and these brushes.
  • I have a few photos I've been putting aside that I might want to use, but I'll also take some new ones. The square photos are from Sticky9, which is my current favorite source for square photos that are the size I like for journaling. You can easily choose your Instagram photos and place a quick order. They also print fun square magnets from your IG photos. (Use code FRIEND10W9P for 15% off your first order!)
  • I plan to use my iPhone for all the photos I'll take (though that might change). I'm going to use my Instax Share printer to easily print some of my photos. I am in love with this printer for many reasons, including that it uses the same "film" as the regular Instax mini instant camera uses (and I have a lot of it) and it is easily portable so I can print anywhere, including the park or a coffee shop. I might also use my new Canon Selphy. Both connect wirelessly to my phone, which is so darn awesome. I'll be writing an article about these printers (and a few others) soon, but here's what I'd say: If you don't currently have a printer that connects to your phone and you want one, the Selphy is awesome because it prints 4x6 plus it easily prints IG photos square (you just have to trim off the ends). The Instax is super fun! But the Selphy is great for every day. (Oh and my phone case is totally a Reading Rainbow aka Brainbow that you can find here.)
  • I'm putting all the photos, tape, and other small things in my favorite Blue Q kitty pouch for ease.

Here's what I want you to remember though: The best Inner Excavation supplies are the ones that bring you joy and the ones you have on hand. So bring the supplies that make you happy!

Feel free to ask any questions in the comments and I'll answer them there.  

Note: Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission or credit if you purchase through the links. 

*****

Come along and join the Inner Excavate-along! It's the read-along meets create-along of my book Inner Excavation. We start July 6, but you can join in any time after that as registration will be ongoing. You can read all about it right here.

Saturday
Jun202015

inner excavate-along

This summer I'm bringing back the Inner Excavate-along! 

It's the read-along meets create-along six-week journey into my book Inner Excavation. This time we're going to have a private Facebook group to share our stories and peeks into what we find in our dig sites. 

It's my way of helping you take my book off of your shelf and actually work through it so you can get all the juicy goodness and learning you can out of it. Yes!

We start July 6!! All you need is the book, the course itself is FREE!

And for a limited time, Inner Excavation is just $16 plus shipping (list price $24.99). You can find it right here in my shop.

It's been so much fun sending out copies to you over the last couple of weeks + sending copies to your friends who you're inviting to join you. Thank you for your support beautiful souls!

A Little More About the Book

In Inner Excavation, I gathered up many of my favorite ways to unearth pieces of our stories using the mediums of poetry, photography, and mixed media.

This book is really about using self-portraits to tell our stories.

Through the prompts and examples in this book, you will be inspired to take photos of the everyday beauty around you (and even turn the camera on yourself), find the poet inside you, play with the art supplies you probably already have in your home, and take time to seek stillness in your daily life.

Most importantly, you will explore new ways to dig deeper into the stories just waiting inside you.

How the Inner Excavate-along Works

Each week you'll receive 3-4 emails from me that follow along with the chapters. I've chosen one prompt to dive deeper inside each week, and you'll be invited to choose the one that speaks to you the most from that chapter. I share some more words about the chapter and my take on the prompt I've chosen to explore. There are videos that I recorded during the first round of this course a couple of years ago, and I'll be sharing a few updates and thoughts as I work through the prompts beside you again.

I can't wait!

What you'll need:

A copy of Inner Excavation

A journal to hold your responses to the prompts

A camera

Simple art supplies if you'd like to play with the art prompts in the book (I'll share some more ideas in an updated post in a few days)

How to sign up:

All you need to do is sign up right here. (And after the course is over, you'll receive my (almost) weekly newsletter about more adventures in telling our stories and creative self-care, which you can unsubscribe from at any time.)

To answer a few questions I've received:

Is this only for people who buy the book from you now?

If you already have the book you are invited to come along! I'm so delighted to have those of you who have had my book from the very beginning join us. You can also check my book out from your local library and you might even find a copy at a used bookstore. You can also buy Inner Excavation online at Amazon.

What supplies do I need?

I've listed a few above, but all you really need is a notebook and your curiosity and an open heart. You could just work through the writing prompts. You could use your phone to have fun with the photography prompts. And you could take simple art supplies like crayons and colored pencils and magazines to dive into the art prompts. 

Let this be simple.

I will share supply resources though as I share my own responses to the prompts along with a brief supply list of items I'm carrying with me into my dig site. 

Do I really need the book? 

We'll be reading through the book together, so the stories being shared and prompts people will be responding to in our Facebook group are all in the book. They won't be listed somewhere else.

And, there's an energy exchange here that is really important to me. Meaning, I gathered up all these juicy prompts and asked some colleagues to join me in sharing stories of our journeys into our dig sites, and I worked hard to put them all together in a book that I'm holding out to you right from my heart. And now I'm inviting you to come along and dive into it all with me in a private Facebook group where I'll be holding space and cheering you on. So yes, the course is free, but having a copy of the book from whatever means works for you feels right to me. If you don't have the book and don't plan to get a copy, this course really isn't for you.

Why is the course free?

One of my biggest hopes is to help women get out of this loop: Buying more "stuff" and ecourses and books to help them tell their stories and live their dreams only to watch them get overwhelmed and not actually do the "stuff" they want to do. 

This is my way of saying, "Let's take one of the books off of our shelves and really dive into it in community and see what we find. Let's get out of the gathering of ideas phase and actually get to the doing. Let's hold hands as we go so we can gently hold each other accountable and help one another push throug the hard moments." It's my way of helping you build a bridge from your daily life to more really good days.

Yes. Yes. Yes.

I hope you'll come along.

xoxo,

Liz

Friday
Jun192015

overflowing

I'm in the middle of hosting the One Move Retreat on the Oregon Coast and my heart is overflowing.

There is so much tucked inside the corners of those words.

There are pieces of who I am, who I was, and who I am becoming.

There are stories and dreams I was afraid to speak out loud and love and that cliche about jumping off the cliff and your wings will appear (okay maybe it is more poetic and you instead come to "the edge" and your wings will carry you but either way it takes crazy guts and a belief in yourself that is astounding and terrifying).

There are years of finding my way and trusting that telling the true stories would lead me here and clunky conversations and deep hugs.

There are moments of wondering if I could carry this tune on my own and sitting in the quiet until the answers were revealed and dancing again and again to Taylor Swift's "Welcome to New York" while letting the words wash over me like a prayer of understanding.

And there is a fierce desire to just answer the question: Is this possible?

Today, I want to leave you with this: One reason to take self-portraits is to gather evidence of those questions deep in our soul. To find proof that we're inside the joy.

So often I take them to chronicle the tough stuff, to make sense out of the grief and the not knowing and the hope. And that is such a beautiful and important practice.

But it is just as important to chronicle the joy. The real, from the guts, "I'm just going to trust that it will always come back" joy.

If ever there was a moment to hashtag blessed this is it people. This. Is. It.

(Thank you for reading my words. For sitting beside me in that quiet. For pushing me to trust my crazy dreams. For listening to my true stories.)

Friday
Jun122015

current beauty faves

Every single time I post an Instagram selfie wearing one of my favorite lipsticks, I get a question or two about them. So I thought I'd post my current favorite colors and share a few of my other current favorite beauty supplies.

1) Aveda lipstick. I love the way it glides on, the colors!, how long it stays on my lips, and how moisturizing it is. I have literally found my favorite lipstick ever (though I still dream about Maple Sugar and wonder if Estee Lauder still makes it - just went and looked, they do!!). My favorite Aveda colors are butternut, fossil (not shown), poppy, and sheer taro. Wild fuchsia is the bright one above and I'm looking forward to having a bit more of a summer glow before using it daily. It is a very happy bright color.

2) I probably say, "Dry shampoo is my new BFF" out loud about about three times a week over here. I find that if wash my hair just about 2-3 times a week, it is much healthier. Enter dry shampoo on Day 3. I've tried a few over the years, but this one from Batiste is my favorite.

3) I've been using Chanel mascara for about a year and I'm in love. In. Love. (And I recently started using purple. Yep. I'm that girl.)

4) When I was in San Francisco earlier this spring with my friend Dona, we came across Benedetta skin care. I've been using the Neroli Hydrating Elixir for about 6 weeks now and really like it. I actually loved the smells of everything they had, and I'm really picky when it comes to how things smell. I use it at night and pair it with the Palmarosa oil in the mornings.

5) On those days when I look as tired as I feel, I use Pixi Eye Bright Liner. It is pretty awesome. (I also have a set similar to the Eye Bright Kit and it's pretty awesome.) 

What are your go-to favorites? I'd love to know!

(Note that some of the links above are affiliates, which means I sometimes receive a small commission when you purchase through the links.)

Wednesday
Jun102015

I'm thinking about...

I'm thinking about how my dear friend is probably going to lose all her hair this month because she starts chemo next week.

I'm thinking about how good this cold brew coffee tastes with vanilla almond milk and how I probably can't let myself buy almond milk anymore because of the drought in California.

I'm thinking about that moment when Ellie got down on the floor next to Millie yesterday and whispered to her and then stood up and said, "I was just chanting to Millie to let her know she can keep sleeping. I love chanting to Millie and to my stuffed animals every night." Earlier that day when I'd started chanting a song to Ganesha as I put our new statue of him on our very messy but made with love (and a side of dust) family altar, she said, "I hate it when you chant."

I'm thinking about how easy it is to judge someone else's parenting when you see snippets of a life online or even in person. 

I'm thinking about how we try on words and roles and ways of being in the world when we're five and when we're 35 and when we're 65.

I'm thinking about how many visits and trips are on our summer calendar and that I get to choose the boundaries I set about my own self-care needs and how I react to the self-care needs of others.

I'm thinking about the moment we were in Seattle over the weekend and I noticed that I still really don't feel like we live here even though it has been 11 years. Outside the city and inside the city aren't the same thing. I want more inside the city moments but maybe I actually want them in my own town.

I'm thinking about how we sat in an ice cream shop yesterday and it felt very Portland with the adorable hipster guys scooping ice cream in their shirts decorated with popsicles and the tip jar wearing a bow tie and then as Jon and I chatted about how cool it is that they opened I found them on Instagram and realized they'd been open for a year and they are less than two miles from our house.

I'm thinking about the magic that is just sitting inside my studio waiting to become talismans and touchstones that people hold in their hands.

I'm thinking about the conversations I've been having with the ladies coming to One Move and the awesome peeps who dove into my Back to the Basics beta test. And I'm convinced that these real, raw, hilarious at times, sincere, honest, gorgeous conversations about how we build a bridge between daily life and more really good days, between daily life and the longings inside us, are the conversations I want to be having with you every single day moving forward.

I'm thinking about how I thought I had to create a new guidebook to how to build this bridge but realized I already had volume one in the form of Inner Excavation. We could call it Step 1: Get to know the one person you'll be spending the most time with as you build this bridge.

I'm thinking about all the scary stuff in the world and I'm thinking about all the beauty people are creating with their hearts, with their hands, with their words, with their little moves in their corners of the world, and I'm convinced that we're all going to be okay, that there is more love than we can imagine available to us when we reach out our hands, that there really is someone out there just waiting for you to say, "You can sit right here beside me."

I'm thinking about how glad I am to be sitting beside you today.

{Thoughts from the back porch while eating peanut butter on raisin toast on June 10, 2015}