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Tangling: Food for My Soul

tangle used: a variation of Pixie

Mandala Monday was almost Mandala Tuesday at Heart Connected.

I had one of those days... I woke up late, which was very unfortunate because I had no time to wake up late. Fortunately, my husband took my oldest to his bus stop. But then, my two little ones and I were late getting out the door, making them late for school. I was late all day. And, there was an emotional tornado of sorts striking at my heart today, stirring lots of muck right up. It wasn't a bad day, I just felt heavyhearted. And late.

Early this evening, before dance class and Cub Scouts and kind-of in the middle of dinner, I began to tangle. With each stroke, my heart rate decreased and by the end of my Zendala, I felt brand new. I kept it simple with the tangle. It is some variation of Pixie that I concocted. It looks like a poinsettia to me. Could it be the influence of the holidays fast approaching? Maybe. One thing is for certain though, tangling is good for my soul.

For Mandala Monday, I wonder, what might be good for your soul? What could you squeeze into your day - something little that might make a huge impact on your mood or your state of mind? Could you whip up a colorful meal? Bake some cookies? Tangle. Figure it out. Then, fit it in. You deserve it.

Have a great week!

Practice, Practice, Practice

Zendala Dare #30, tangles used: pinwheels, intersection, eke, poke pumpkin, and ennies

For this week's Zendala Dare, the challenge was all about Thanksgiving...PIE! In my opinion, along with the stuffing, cranberry-apple crumble, corn casserole, and bread with real butter, the pie is the best part. I'm getting a little hungry here now. In the name of PIE, the challenge is to use tangles that start with the letters P, I, and E. Plus, a tangle we have never used before.

Easy as... pie!

Well, not so easy, actually. I am not in love with the way my Zendala turned out. I'm not loving the tangle - Intersection, the one on the sides that comprises a bunch of lines intersecting. I tried to embellish it with a swirly tangle, but I don't know, there is just something about straight lines that rarely appeals to me. But, I tried something new and in the process remembered the importance of seeing tangling as a practice. The point is to try new things, to fall into the process, and to practice, practice, practice.

For the last several years, I have practiced gratitude each day for the 30 days of November by posting something I am grateful for on Facebook. When I first started it, in 2009, I was in the midst of a bad news storm. It seemed like all I was hearing from friends and family was bad news. I decided to bring some positivity into my life by focusing on the things that made me happy. I was amazed by the response. Several of my friends joined me by doing the same thing through November. This year, so many of my friends are practicing gratitude on Facebook and I love hearing what people are thankful for each day. It is always a great reminder that no matter what is happening in my life, there are truly so many things for which to be grateful.

For Mandala Monday, let's all reflect on the ways in which we practice gratitude. A real shift in energy occurs when gratitude plays a part in our daily lives. Practicing gratitude is like medicine for the soul. It heals our hearts. And, there are no adverse side effects! If you haven't already begun a daily practice of gratitude, I highly recommend it.

Thank you!

Afraid of the Dark?

Tangles used: Twilight Zone, Flying Geese, Flutter, Flora, Fescu, Nipa Droplets, Yincut, Printemps (variation)
Sakura white Gelly Roll pen on black card stock, with white charcoal pencil

Here it is! My second official Zendala for the fabulous Erin's Zendala Dare! This is Zendala Dare #29.

I did it on black because it is Halloween week, after all. As I began to tangle, I started thinking about what this week's Monday Mandala might invite us to think about. Because of Halloween, I think, I went straight to fears. In addition to fears like snakes and creepy spiders and ghosts on Halloween, our deepest fears can paralyze us. They keep us from moving forward. They keep us from moving altogether sometimes. What are your deepest, darkest fears? 

Darkest fears.

Our fears keep us in the dark. What I love about this mandala is the white ink coming out of the darkness of the black background. White symbolizes the LIGHT. In the midst of darkness, just a little bit of light can guide us out and into a brighter place. So, let's not dwell on fear. What lights you up? What moves you from the darkness into the LIGHT?

Today is a gloomy, windy day in Michigan. I am thinking about my east coast friends and Hurricane Sandy, praying that she spares the coast from disaster. Weather can be so scary. At the same time, there is a shooter on the loose in my area. He has been shooting cars at random on the highway. Whaaaaat?!?! Scary.

I am trying to keep my eyes toward the light today. For me, that light is my family - my husband and our three children, our extended families, and my sweet friends who lift me up and carry me out of the dark. At the center of my mandala, I used a tangle called The Twilight Zone, it seems to be swirling. I imagine the swirling effect could launch us right up and out of the darkness, into the safety of the light.

I love the way this simple dare turned into something so much more meaningful for me. I think that is the power of the mandala + Zentangle. It is the Zendala at work.

Wishing you safety, peace, love, and light today. xo

For my tangling friends, oh my gosh! The Gelly Roll pen was driving me nuts with its thick tip. It was fun to try something different though. Thanks for another great dare, Erin! I can't wait to see everyone's creations!