JOY love tribe

Something new is brewing and you're gonna like it

 it's been a while hasn't it?

life. it gets you. and you have to deal in or check out.

#coopthedog and something new

for a while there circumstances had me checking into life hard and deep { we lost a family member in december } and everything else had to take a back seat so that i could support them and be supported myself as we planned for a thing we wished we didn't have to.

today, we're all still going thru the motions while also trying to pick up the millions pieces our lives got shattered into.

fresh perspective is what sorrowful events like this gives you.  when i got back home to my studio in january i took time to evaluate how i wanted this blog to exist, if even i wanted it to at all.

i started this blog back in 2007, or the iteration it was before i made it part of my business officially.  back then it was a place to showcase my art quilts and sell my hand dyed fabrics.  it has definitely evolved since then but, unfortunately for me, how i thought about it hadn't changed. this led to it becoming a chore and a hit and miss on when i posted.  no good right?

for the new year i made the decision not to blog anymore. i told my business mastermind group my decision and it felt good.  the pressure was off.  i could commit to just posting on insta { love that space!!!! }

but.....

i missed the sharing i did here, in this imperfect space i call my online home.

i had so compartmentalised myself, pushing what i did here into existing in a tiny, tiny space that it became claustrophobic to even think of coming here, let alone writing something and posting it.

now, after a brief time away, i'm beginning to think that i still need this space, but in a different way { that's the power of journaling ... it helps infuse fresh perspective } and i came away with 2 thoughts...

  • i realized that i needed to stop trying to be like those blogs i read.

  • i realized that i needed to stop trying to do things on my blog like those blogs i was trying to emulate.

they do their blog their way.  what i know now is i need not be so rigid in the how and the what i bring to this space because ....i've figured out my why.  phew!

{ p.s.watch this Soul Speak with Grace video to hear about my why }

i share this only to say that..........something new is brewing.

{ remember...fresh perspective }

Choose light and something new

in the above mini-episode of Soul Speak i talk about ..."on choosing light", cause ya know sometimes some things are just a slow dawning.

i'll be sharing a lot more videos with you { like my Soul Speaks }

...and sharing what i know about journaling and how fricking awesome it is { that's Journal Circle }

...and be more consistent in sending out the JLT Notes, my newsletter.

UPDATE: Join The Lighthouse Letters and download your Personal Manifesto Guide.

but, but, but...the biggest way i'm authentically choosing to share AND step into my light { cause i know my why! } is thru my new and most passionate calling ... being a life coach  { see * below }.

journaling has always been a part of my life and sharing this awesome and powerful way to discover more of who YOU are is what i'm supposed to be doing.

and life coaching is...well it's who i am meant to be.

remember oprah's what i know for sure?  this is mine.  { cannot tell you how good it feels to say that out loud.  mmmmh! }

so how are you coming into this picture?

for one, there is the Journal Circle, my way to give back and gather with kindreds in community.  we come together on zoom for about an hour and nurture and support and love and journal and art together.  you'll need to register first and then you'll be automatically notified when the next one will take place.

right now it's free to join us in Circle. we're still growing so i'm trying to find the best times for repeating our journal jOY......once a month or every 2 weeks.  and ya know what.....i would love to have you join us.

plus, fill out the form below to join the JOY Love Tribe and begin receiving JLT Notes on a regular.  thanks for being here and for seeing me.  I hope to see much more of you in the coming months.

toodles,

Grace

btw....that cutie in the pic above is our dog cooper.  that face right?


* life coaching has fast become a passion of mine to be able to help women discover and dig deep into who they are in an authentic and supported way, to help find your joy.  right now i'm in training with kate swoboda of your courageous life and am loving this experience, this new adventure { holy smokes the girl goes deep! }.

one of the things we are now doing as trainees is to take on new outside clients.  i'll be offering my coaching services at a discounted rate while i'm in training.  if you find you're in need support around an issue in your life and want to test the coaching waters, i would love to help you gain clarity and focus and heart-centered wholeness.  find out more here.

how to have more spectacular ordinary moments

spectacular ordinary moments:  a recap

the other day my daughter { who is on the fast track of adulting right now } came over.  she's been living on her own for the last 3 months, struggling but still doing her thing.

when she comes over i get all giggly and stuff because 1) there's more estrogen in the house, albeit only momentarily,  2) i really love hanging out with her and  3) she gets me { see #1 in this sentence }.

don't you love it when your folks get you?

...cause living with a 15 yr old smack dab in the middle of male hormonal hell { did i write that? ...YES i did! } and a hubby who, without being intentional, is sometimes very decidedly male { there goes #1 again } can make a girl, who definitely appreciates her feminine side, so batty that reverting to my giggly phase when my girl's around somehow lessons the impact of said overflow of testosterone.

so said hubby and i decided the four of us would go out to dinner instead of cooking and that decision inspired what i like to call a "spectacular ordinary moment".

3 Steps from Ordinary to Extraordianry

we talked plenty & laughed at jokes only our family would know, with some howling at one point that i had to remind them there were other patrons around who might not appreciate that what we thought was so spectacularly funny was really not.

after writing in my journal about this experience i remembered a post i wrote about ways to bring in more spectacular ordinary moments and i thought i'd share it again with you cause reminders like this need repeating.  enjoy!

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 

 

how can you turn your ordinary day into something more spectacular?

here are 3 ways you can use to raise the ordinary factor....

1. pay attention

that’s right.  1st….become more aware.  ever so simple right?  it can be the most transformational yet, at the same time, be so darn elusive. but as you go about each day be mindful of your presence, be mindful of your surroundings, be mindful of your thoughts,  be mindful of others.

in this one activity the ordinary we encounter can become the profound.

e.g.  for 5-10 minutes sit and watch a child play.  i mean really watch.  observe how the outside world has little bearing on their interactions with their toys, the dog or a cardboard box.  they are keenly and only aware of themselves and this object that has their attention.

they are more aware in those moments of their intentions and attention but most likely are clueless to this because they don’t have the reasoning capabilities just yet.  as an adult however, you do.  becoming more aware is a skill you can master.

2. let the little things go

things get our goat.  they stick in our craw sometimes.  they try our last bit of patience and, before you know it our energy is sucked dry by something so inconsequential that if you look back you’ll wonder why the thing bothered you so in the 1st place.

let go little bird, let it go.  in choosing to let the small things go you open up all sorts of bigger possibilities { ahhh….. } and allow for more moments of awareness, the kind of awareness that can change your day from bummer gloomy to outright sunshiny & bright or peaceful & content.

for those of us who have not yet made it a practice of letting go { me included sometimes.  shocker right? lol  }, it’s hard to push past that stick-in-craw stuff but …and a BIG but here.

but being concerned with the whys and hows of any given situation, the he said/she saids that go on not to mention all the “crazy” people who you have no control over anyway, all of this is sooo darn counterintuitive to being aware and living a more mindful life.

take a B R E A T H right here.  yes! { plus you’ll miss the darn beauty of those sweet ordinary moments }.

3. create space for extraordinary to happen

by damn this is a good one!

in a nut shell this means Living. In. JOY.   nah…you’re not walking around with a silly happy grin plastered on your face, nor does it mean denying the reality of a situation { sometimes we need to accept and move on people! }.

making space for the extraordinary in your ordinary day means being real with yourself and keeping an open mind despite the crazies that can occur.

if all you ever do is complain or see things from a downward perspective then imagine what you’re telling the Universe.  ick!  instead, be open for the possibility of extraordinary to occur.  and then when it does, smile, say thank you, enjoy your special moment and then tuck it in your pocket { or write it in your journal }.

3 small steps that can bring more awareness to you everyday life.  how brilliant is that!

plus, don’t forget to join the revolution below….the JOURNALING revolution!

toodles,

G


ing-factor-with-border
 

Need more help on your journey to extraordinary?  have you tried -ing-ing yet?  whoa! you haven’t??? 

Head over here to download my FREE pdf, "The -Ing Factor", a fun, slap happy way to journal your heartwords or jumpstart your journey using prompts provided for you. Easy right?!

By joining the way cool JOY Love Tribe and becoming a bona fida member you'll get access to all pdf's in the JLT Resource Library including The -Ing Factor! 

how to pay it forward with gratitude

Pay it forward

have you ever heard of pay it forward?  it's when instead of paying back a good deed done for you to the person who did it, you instead do a good deed for another ...in effect paying the good deed forward & passing it on.

that to me is what writing in a gratitude journal { like my booklet journals } is about. paying it forward thru written recognition the good that happens in your daily life. all these small recollections & reflections will then have a chance to ripple out from you, spreading love and JOY to those around you and magically into the world as well.

...cause that's how The Universe works y'all.  one ripple of JOY at a time.

Red_Lattice Journaling Booklet-Pay it forward

why gratitude?

a gratitude journal is a mental and physical reminder that, despite all the crazy that might surround your daily life, there is a whole bunch of good that happens around you and for you & with you in mind that you should you should take some time to bring awareness to it. { tweet that! }

[bctt tweet="a gratitude journal is a mental and physical reminder that, despite all the crazy that might surround your daily life, there is a whole bunch of good that happens around you & for you, with you in mind, that you should be bringing awareness to. " username="kgracehowes"]

the first time i heard of a gratitude journal was on oprah's show waaaaay back when.  my life was in a bit of shambles at that time trying to mentally process some issues hubby and i were having.  as i watched the program i remember thinking that it was a good idea but how could i, in the midst of such upheaval, have anything to be grateful for.

i was lost and felt very alone. 

after a very upsetting argument between us i retreated to my studio to lose myself in my quilting, and, instead, i sat and cried.  it was only then that i remembered oprah's show.  so i grabbed a pad of paper and a pen and tried to list all the positive things that i could think of that was & had happened to me.

it was a short, short list.

but the thing that that remuneration did was spark something in me.  it felt soooo good to see a light at the end of this long dark tunnel i was in.  i found a small booklet i'd set aside because it was to pretty to use  { yeh, i thought that way too about "pretty" blank books } and made myself write 2 things i was grateful for at the end of every single day.

btw.....i told no one what i was doing. this was my thing, my way to help myself and a way to feel personally fulfilled.

i did this for 5 years.  every. darn. day.  it not that that's how long it took to for us to get out of our marital slump but it became such a regular practice at the end of an evening to curl up and record my "gratefuls" { p.s  gratefuls is my new made up word...you like?}.  i became to so use to being present, alive and aware in every moment of my day.  i felt a sense of grounding and a piece of my soul got rejuvinated every time i wrote and reread my "gratefuls".

writing your "gratefuls" down in it's own special journal is a gift you give yourself. every. day.  it's another reason i like to use my booklets for that.  it's easy to tuck into a handbag or under the car seat and whenever a grateful comes to mind you pick up your booklet and record you moment of gratefulness.

i hope you begin or re-start your "gratefuls" practice.  collect them in a booklet and then check back in a year's time.  i bet you'll see the difference just that year makes, and how much better you view your world and the JOY that's in abundance.  you will have created that.  yup....YOU

leave a comment below on how you pay it forward or how you record your gratefuls.

in peace and JOY and with a grateful heart,

grace

it's almost time for the big reveal and shop RE-OPENING y'all! can ya feel how crackly good the air is?  it's JOY peaking its head out from atop a fluffy cloud because...the JOURNALS are coming! June 15th is the shop re-launch and i cannot wait!  but to get in on on all the goodies i have in store for my JLT-ers { that's JOY Love TRibe for short, lol }  you have to be a member.  sign up below and get in quick.   tick tock.  tick tock. lol

and the SPECTRUM giveaway winner is...

i've had so much fun again offering this 2nd giveaway so we will wait no more.the SPECTRUM giveaway winner of a FREE spot in the workshop and a mini "grace journal" is

drumroll please......

KRYSTE HERRING!
happy face partying - giveaway winner

{ oh yeh! }

congrats kryste!  if you haven't already, please send me your snail mail address so i can mail you your new mini sketchbook.

thank you...

to all of you who entered the giveaway.  i adore you and very much appreciate you visiting my blog and being a part of the JOY love tribe.  in fact i adore all JLT members { just spreading some JOY...and love to y'all }.

there's soooo much happening behind the scenes here at redbarn studios and i can't wait to reveal them to you but you gotta wait a lil teeny bit longer.  i will be sharing sneak peaks over on instagram { so go follow me } but just know, there's good things to come!

y'all know i'm a bookbinder, a journaler and a mixed media artist.  so i have a question for you.  

what would you like to see me work on for YOU?  what are your interests and needs that i can help you with ...create a course?  design a printable to help you in your daily life?  create a particular type of journal to house your heartwords?  leave a comment below or shoot me an email { use the link above } to let me know.

anyway, that's it for now.  SPECTRUM starts May 2nd.  if you haven't already signed up click this link to join us here. i'd love to see you in class.

toodles,

G