desk nest shelf

mental health and other creative projects

a brain exercise

I have a good memory for spelling, but I never spell ‘exercise’ correctly on the first try. It’s one of those words.

Here’s a thinking/writing exercise I found:

I am

I have

I need

I do not need

Here’s mine for today. Continue reading “a brain exercise”

just thoughts

The past few weeks have been a bit busy. Exciting things, and painful things.

Exciting things first: something good came in the mail!


Continue reading “just thoughts”

meeting them all


My night. I like this tea. It’s pretty good. It’s called ‘Love’, with rose, chamomile and lavender. It seemed appropriate, even more so since I’m getting a headache. (I’ve been getting them a lot recently…)

So, a bit o’ self-love is called for. Tonight I’ll drink my tea, do some yoga and meditation, go to bed early, call my boyfriend for a little while. (We didn’t get to see each other today but it’s not a big deal. We’ve been together for a while and are really low-key about Valentine’s Day. And pretty much everything else.)

But quickly, before my head starts hurt more, I want to share this.

Continue reading “meeting them all”

a very tentative life plan emerges

For the past year, I’ve mostly lost interest in making things. I had my Regency dress project; I worked on that in spurts, and had fun sharing it on my blog, but overall I haven’t had sustained energy or interest in making things.

I haven’t even been interested in knitting. That is unprecedented. A friend invited me to join his knitting group, and I realized that I don’t even have an ongoing knitting project to bring. (WHO AM I???!!) Continue reading “a very tentative life plan emerges”

chronic pain and alternatives to “positive thinking” culture

Self-care page from my healing book.

I’ve been thinking for a while about writing something on chronic pain. It’s a very complicated area, so this has been sitting in my drafts folder for a few months. I think it’s finally ready for your thoughts, though.

To be honest, I have felt that somehow I don’t deserve to write about chronic pain as a topic, but the reality is that I have lived with severe pain in various forms consistently for over a year now. I don’t want to invalidate my experience any longer by telling myself that I’m not ‘allowed’ to write about it. It helps me to talk about it, and my thoughts may even be of value to others. (Gasp!)

Particularly over the past year, I’ve struggled with the idea of ‘positive thinking’ because I’ve seen so much ‘positive’ messaging that is really, really harmful. I’m not the first person to write about this, and I certainly won’t be the most eloquent, comprehensive or wide-reaching, but I’m going to go for it anyway.

Continue reading “chronic pain and alternatives to “positive thinking” culture”

on toxic harmony

CN: discussion of abusive family (not very detailed, but potentially upsetting. Do what you need to do!)

 I’m not a believer of astrology (meaning no disrespect to my friends who find it very meaningful), but still I always took a sort of pride in what my sign, Libra, stood for. Its message of balance, harmony, and creativity resonated with me, and I still feel it fits very well. I did not realize until recently that one of my drives to create a harmonious environment comes from an unhealthy place.

Continue reading “on toxic harmony”

the most diy of diys


Colored hairpins are trendy! But they are more expensive than brown hairpins. Do you want them?

Continue reading “the most diy of diys”

shea butter winter cream

Since my herbal salve-making adventure I’ve been itching, though not literally, (harr harr see what I did there?) to try making something new.

A few weeks ago I found this recipe for shea butter hair mousse on the blog The Sweet Plantain. I had the suspicion that it might be too heavy for my curls but it just looked so nice that decided to try it out, figuring that I would like it as a body lotion even if it doesn’t quite work for my finicky hair.

We recently had a good snow and the glare outside made for some dramatic mid-morning light coming in through the kitchen windows. The fluffy, bright white mix caught the light and reminded me of the snow outside. So while this recipe isn’t entirely my own–I only tweaked it a wee bit– I’m taking the liberty of calling it winter cream. It looks clean and snowy, and harsh winters are when skin really needs some extra care.  Continue reading “shea butter winter cream”


“The thing that you are most afraid of has already happened.”


I heard this on the podcast “Magic Lessons”  with Elizabeth Gilbert; she attributes it to her therapist. The episode was discussing the relationship between creativity and fear of failure.

This makes a whole lot of sense to me because I’ve recently started to understand how much our present fears come from past experiences that left us hurt. That doesn’t mean that none of it is valid or that we should ignore our current fears because they’re ‘not rational’. I think it means that –so long as this process won’t be overly damaging to us right now– we can learn a lot about ourselves by starting to investigate where our fears were planted and fed.

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