New batteries for the magic wand!

Heresy alert!!!

I have come to the conclusion that the only thing scarier than change is NO change!

Yep… I know. That’s not the way many of us learned it.

And, just between us, this is a pretty big topic at our house.

Let’s just say that the Legendary Husband and I have differing notions of same and different!

He has strong same strategies for food. And seemingly random patterns of time. (Except for Saturday nights… and Dragon Con!)

My journey feels different. At least to me.

It’s kind of an internal/external dynamic.

When I’m processing internal stuff – often on a non-conscious level – my powers of avoiding change kick in. I just don’t have the energy for external newness.

Then, when an inner ah-hah comes, I often need external change to support my new perceptions and goals and visions.

And, if I were to come totally clean, I’m pretty sure we both consider each other as oddly random. (Which is an issue for another day!)

For today, it’s memory lane time. Specifically, Eckerd College in about 1986 for one of my favorite quotes of all time:

In order to learn we must be willing to be changed.

I hear you! It does feel scary at first glance.

And yes, if it were my voice in these days, my inner red ink persona might go with:

In order to learn we must make space for change to find us.

Let’s just say that I did and I am. Which seems to take lots less energy than resisting does!

And, yes… it takes practice!

Here’s my best tip…

Carrot is easier than stick!

And company helps!

Which reminds me of a scene from The West Wing.

I’ve been down the Change hole a lot! And I have a whole Medicine Basket full of ways to make it work!

It’s going to take a whole lot of us to squeeze hope out of the world in this moment. If you could use a Fiercely Compassionate Rebel Grandmother who’s been there before, let’s talk! 45 min. My gift. Just summon the calendar elves to find you some time!

And, just in case you’re feeling skeptical… the very writing of these words, in this moment, made space for the next steps on my path to appear!!! With apologies to the exclamation point conservation fairy, it’s really exciting!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ps… did you notice all those triangles on Grandmother Moon’s head? That’s our secret code for change!

pps… ready for a safe mini-step forward??? How about Super Power Leggings??? Five size ranges and they travel great! Intention really does matter!!! Buy two pairs – any size – any design, and save with code BUY 2 – SAVE $8

Surprise! I like choosing… aka, Legend, part next.

Okay, maybe not so much a surprise, if you’ve been reading along for a bit.

And, true!

It happened like this…

Grandmother Moon has been doing her job, whispering in my ear.

And, yes… she’s whispering about paint.

Sadly, the actual world hasn’t been listening.

Instead, my local universe is obsessed with sewer pipes. Specifically, putting new ones in the pocket park next to our yard.

Imagine the entire percussion section of the least inspired band ever invading all your senses…


The noise is bad enough. The shaking house is even more unsettling. Not just the floors, but dishes in the cupboards and paintings on the walls.

Even the Legendary Husband is rattled. And he has superhuman powers of not noticing!

Still… it was time to paint.

Grandmother Moon had a suggestion.

Do what works!

So, a search through some old paint supplies. Blessedly, something known as a pouncing brush remained from a long ago experiment with painting furniture.

Instead of stroking the paint on the canvas, this tool, with its drum-like end, is for tapping the paint on the canvas. Think woodpecker!

With a bit of practice, I actually managed to tap in time with the construction symphony!

Admittedly, it doesn’t look like much yet. And, it’s on the way!

Eventual art, even in the midst of sensory chaos.

Which is, I suspect, the way most art happens… when making it matters more to the spirit than hiding does.

So, hope… hope… hope… hope… hope…

And trust… trust… trust… trust… trust…

Along with some a-bun-dance… a-bun-dance… a-bun-dance…

And even ov-er-com-ing!


Stay tuned!

For now, the teeth-rattling pounding has stopped and I feel a nap coming on, while the paint dries!

ps… my inner camera-phobe survived a video interview today! Subject… a recent book! turning point is about exactly that – amazing women sharing huge turning points in their lives! It is em-power-ing reading. Pun intended! (The cover art is mine, as well!) Get yours here!

Perspective Issues!

It’s Legend time again, in one of the lands where I live.

Well, technically, Legend time is coming to a close for this year, while I am just beginning.

Beginning, that is, after a trip to places where legends run deep in the land and in my heart.

So, I am not, as I might once have supposed, behind. I am more ready!

And the painting I began today will be utterly different because I am.

First, a re-purposed canvas. It began in the night sky and got somehow derailed by other adventures. And it feels like the perfect volunteer for this journey!

Then, two colors. One has appeared. Turquoise. Voice chakra. Truth, some would say. A portal of Grace.

Then, soon, the green which carries the energy of Compassion in my world.

And, as you might suspect, a question…

What story have I been telling myself about myself?

I’ll let you know when the answer appears!

For now, me in my imaginary Writing Cave, complete with flickering candlelight and one of my favorite paint shirts.

A different me than the one who began her first Legend painting early in 2018. And that is a huge part of the magic!

That’s where the notion of perspective comes in!

The painting at the top is a messy middle phase of that first Legend journey. My third Intentional Creativity® painting. And my first attempt at a non-chalkboard face.

It was quite the adventure! Especially for the photo-avoidant kid who still hangs out deep inside me.

And the stakes felt really huge.

You see, finishing that first Legend painting was part of the acceptance process for Color of Woman. And, against all odds, I really, really wanted to make that journey even though it felt utterly outside my notions of me.

And so, I broke one of the rules I was raised with.

I did a thing we didn’t do!

And I am still finding a whole lot more of me!

Clearly there are more adventures to be had. Possibly without the Pepto pink paint!

And a question… what adventures might you be pondering? And how might the treasures in my Medicine Basket be helpful??? (The world needs a whole lot of us and the calendar elves will be delighted to hook you up with 45 minutes. My gift. Bring your dreams!)


First, our trip home last night was a bit more of an extended adventure than we planned.

Missing jetways, baggage gone walkabout, really sore muscles… you get the picture.

Then, to say that my morning started off in a dramatic fashion is a bit of an understatement.

I was reading a book I’ll tell you about in a minute.

All of a sudden, the Boom! along with the house shaking, which is a bit much for me during my first cup of tea.

Detective work was clearly in order.

  1. Text to check on Legendary Husband, already at work in the basement.
  2. Attain levitation.
  3. Peek out windows.

The front was all clear. I even noticed the beginnings of pollinator flowers blooming in the garden, which I had missed at midnight.

The side toward our neighbors was clear, too. At least what I could see.

Then, the studio, and the huge tree down in the back yard! Fortunately it missed the house!

A quick check with the neighbors confirmed that they, too, were okay, despite a somewhat crushed fence.

By then, only half a cup of tea ahead, it was time to head off to physical therapy.

After a batch of dry needles, we went back to strategizing for the trip to France and I learned to hula!

For real!!!

Not like flowers and grass skirts, but quite cool.

I was holding onto a big metal frame (a doorway being a good home substitute) looking into a massive mirror (Gulp!) and getting my hips to move alternately up and down in a fashion quite like hula dancing which, trust me, they never covered in gym class but probably should have.

Here’s the surprise… it was fun AND it helps strengthen some muscles that can use all the help they can get!

Then, home for tea and a bit more reading.

Remember the book?

It’s part of my preparation for France and was written by the leader of the journey… Kathleen McGowan.

Here’s the part I just have to share:

The path of the first petal is faith, and it is the foundation upon which your spiritual life is built. One of my favorite quotes comes from Gandhi, who said, “Be the change you wish to see in this world.” I would add to that, if I may be so bold, “And the change you wish to see in your life.”

The Source of Miracles

And I would add to that, if I may be so bold…

even on days when the change you wish to see in your life involves learning to hula dance!

Which is kind of like saying that maybe, just maybe, walking the Way of Love is scary and turns out to be way better than we might have imagined!

I’d love to know what that looks like in your world! You can leave a comment, below, or email me.

ps… the special offer on wearable art leggings is good until midnight (ET) June 30! They’re gorgeous. They wash great. And they come in LOTS of sizes. Check it out at FierceArtWithHeart. Just put any 2 pair in your basket and enter the magic code BUY 2 – SAVE $8

Hope Lives!!!

Can’t you just smell it??? Like a baby’s head!

A newborn Barnes & Noble in the exact place where we are.

Yep! Field Trip!!!

Here’s the astounding part… I don’t think I’ve been in an actual book store since the Pandemic started!

There it stands, all shiny and fresh. And, yes, it smells like books. Many, many, many actual books.

A local author at a table just inside, signing copies of her book and trying hard to get names right in a diverse crowd.

Cafe. Magazines. Actual people offering to help. And being able to!

And the amazing blessing of being there with three generations of my family… thrilled to be in a book store.

And, just as wonder-full, the many families with Littles.

Some of them, I suspect, too young to have ever been in such a magical place before.

One of those Littles was so excited she was spinning like a toy top in the midst of the picture book section, laughing with glee.

I, as you’ve probably guessed, found a couple of treasures.

Stacey Abrams’ new mystery novel. And a wondrous journal for my trip to the heart of learning new things and writing about them in France.

I’d been searching for a journal online, which was hard because I couldn’t feel them. Not the covers, or the pages. I couldn’t feel how heavy they were. I couldn’t smell them, either.

For me, these things matter.

Here’s a peek…

And then came the ah-hah!

In this moment there are too many voices against exactly THIS!

Against children exploring and learning new things.

Against Americans reading books by people like Stacey Abrams.

Against families making choices together and talking about those choices.

And I was more inspired than ever!

You see, what will go into this journal, waiting there in that moment for me to find it, is words.

My words. (And, predictably, some sketches, too!)

My learnings and reflectings and editings. My choices!

And, one day, they, too, will become a book. The book that started hatching when my whole being was pregnant with the painting known as Revelation!

The book that will be all about being able to choose and the amazing people who have helped me learn to claim that as truth.

In the meantime, there is more painting to do. Sanctuary. Legend. And then, Origins.

And packing. And nourishing my voice chakra with Truth Oil.

And enjoying my manicure, with nails the color of Truth Oil, courtesy of my Granddaughter.

Because hands are part of Voice, too!

For now… a brief nap and some dinner to fix. And my most beloved people to hug. They’re all in Revelation! too, but it’s harder to hug a canvas!

ps… act fast! The special offer on fabulous leggings at FierceArtWithHeart ends June 30. Perfect for you being you, with Intention! Available now in 5 size ranges! (Including Littles!!!) Just choose 2 pair and enter the code when you check out… BUY 2 – SAVE $8

pps… what if Independence Day this year was a very personal opportunity to lay down some limiting beliefs standing between the place where you are and the place where you feel called to be??? I can help! Just ask the calendar elves for 45 minutes. My gift. And hurry! I’ll be off laying down some more of those limiting beliefs for a couple of weeks and I only have room for a few appointments before then!

Reflections on a 21st Century Tuesday

It’s 5:09 in the afternoon as these words begin to take form. Thus far, this day has been quite the adventure!

I’ll catch you up in a minute!

First… now.

I just woke from a well-deserved, post-Physical Therapy nap, at 5pm. Big dog snoring at my feet, I reached for my phone.

First stop… checking on a message stream with and for a small group sister facing huge challenges about 1800 miles away. Holding space is intense sacred work in a crisis.

Caught up, it was email time. Here — for real! — are the first 4 things in my box:

  1. From the Audubon Society… ACT NOW to Stop the Lesser Prairie-Chicken Extinction Act! Apparently, we’re actually okay with Lesser Prairie-Chickens, though the US Congress may be about to remove them from the list of protected species, which – grammar/labeling challenges aside – the Audubon Society is actually trying to stop.
  2. From Care2Action Alerts… A migrant center caught on fire. Officials left people locked inside to burn. At least 40 people died at this Mexican migrant center near the U.S. border and, “public servants and security guards present during the fire did nothing to save the people burning alive inside — they wouldn’t even open the locked doors to let them escape the blazes.”
  3. From Patriotic Millionaires – The Senate must investigate Clarence Thomas and Krysten Sinema over their financial ties to Harlan Crow. Never mind for a a moment than Sen. Sinema’s name is actually Kyrsten… Billionaires should not be able to buy a Senator or a Justice on the Supreme Court but… it looks like it may be working.
  4. From Team Progress America… The House could vote TOMORROW… Kevin can only afford to lose 5 votes… (I’m guessing you’ve heard about the Debt Ceiling thing…)

I did my version of the next right thing about each of those messages, with tears flowing down my cheeks, blessedly conscious of the notion of filters and how mine were – in that moment – filtering what I read. Which is a bit like saying I was conscious of what was under my reactions to what I was reading.

Being conscious is often not huge fun. And it gives us the opportunity to make aligned choices instead of reacting in the mythical knee-jerk kind of way.

(This is, perhaps, a good time to mention that my particular US Senators and Representative, as well as the more local crowd, are not unaccustomed to emails from me. At least their interns are not unaccustomed to emails from me!)

Why? I have 2 granddaughters growing up in this world!

I won’t bore you with my opinions on these particular issues.

I will tell you that reading them “through” the filter of knowing that there is a county in these United States of America having – in this moment – 400 women and children waiting for space in a Domestic Violence shelter sharpens my sense of WTF are we thinking???

And then there’s the whole standing in my voice, my sovereignty, thing that’s an essential part of not only the conversation in the places I hang out, but the global conversation in our world, in this moment.

So… for the intrepid among you… here’s the heart of the matter, for me…

Subjugating, beating, terrorizing, depriving, and not seeing others, in order to make ourselves feel bigger, more powerful, more important is just wrong.

Continuing to subjugate, beat, terrorize, deprive, and ignore others, even after we see, is more wrong.

I can’t fix it all. Neither can you. But, together, we can make choices with that truth in our hearts. Lots of choices, over and over. And, little by little, it will get better.

Which, for me at least, is a good bit more true than doing nothing.

And, yes… if you were wondering, the whole Furniture Yahtzee game going on around here has a lot to do with exactly that! With doing more with what we already have. With making literal space for helping others. With surrounding ourselves with intentional reminders of our Big Why’s.

Also, somewhere in the dusty corners of my awareness, there’s a quote from The West Wing

It’s an honor thing!

Maybe I can’t remember the exact context because all of life is the context!

For now, though, new truth added to my Red Madonna Sanctuary canvas…

ps… furniture Yahtzee goes on! The ancestor space, above, makes my heart happy!

pps… speaking of ancestors — Mothers Day is coming soon! Check out FierceArtWithHeart for great, affordable gifts for moms and grammies. Even for you! Choose mugs, posters, greeting cards, and other cool goodies while there’s still time for the print-on-demand elves to make their magic!

I dreamed I was a box turtle!

Or, technically, tortoise… but my inner child, who has lots to do with dreaming, learned turtle!

And, yes… I’m pretty sure I know why this dreamer is dreaming this dream, now.

It has to do with the current Furniture Yahtzee adventure. (It has to do with something else, too, but we’ll get there…)

First, a bit of context. Furniture Yahtzee is code, around here, for what happens when two people with differing mobility challenges try to run lives and 3 businesses out of an early 60’s ranch house with a very big dog, too many steps, about a zillion books, and enough art supplies to – well, paint the rainbow!

Periodically, our needs change. Or, maybe, my powers of denial fail me. In any event, it was time. Time to essentially swap two of the busiest, least magazine-ready, rooms in the house.

The narrow hallway between those 2 rooms didn’t help much!

The swapping bit is, essentially, done. You know… drag this over here where that was, and so forth. Now comes nesting!

We’re tired and sore. And my muscle memory mind is totally confused! The part of me that knew – in a deep level of non-consciousness – to stick out my right hand to grab my cell phone is adapting to the fact that it now lives in the land of the left hand! And so on and so forth…

Hence, I suspect, the dream!

First, though, you need to know about Abraham and Sarah.

Nope! Not the biblical ancestor folks. The turtles!

When Dave and I moved to the Village at Columbia Seminary, very nearly 34 years ago, we had some adjusting to do. One of the biggest changes was the theoretical no pets rule. My 7-year old was decidedly unamused!

We had fish, which didn’t thrive in their tiny universe.

We even tried a bunny. When he reached adolescence, he grew – shall we say – frustrated, and started biting. I called a vet to inquire about neutering which turned out to be both very risky and very, very expensive.

After I missed a week at my nursing job, due to the heavily bandaged finger, Thumper moved to the petting zoo at Stone Mountain where he could happily do what bunnies are known to do and not bite people!

(Yes… a practical solution with major philosophical issues!)

Then, one day, my second grader who struggled with reading, arrived home clutching a school library book and announced that he had the perfect solution… Turtles, Mama!!!

(Clearly, I gave in!)

Abraham and Sarah did surprisingly well. And they were popular with my neighbors!

Friday afternoons often involved half a dozen or so seminary students sitting on the sidewalk, sipping beer and walking the turtles!

Fast forward to my dream!

A bit of internet searching on Turtle/Tortoise Spirit Animals will lead to the notion that having a safe haven is very important for Turtle people.

Perhaps especially so when you have memories of not having had such a safe haven!

To Indigenous peoples, turtles also represent healing, wisdom, spirituality, health, safety, longevity, protection, and fertility!

I relate to those words a lot, at this point in my journey. Some of them more symbolically, than others!!!

For now, though, we’re kind of still in the chaos phase of creation!

My favorite chair/nest has a whole new view of the world. (Well, it has a whole new view of a lot of things still to be done!) And, I am no longer attempting my deepest creating in a place that doubled as the pathway to the bathroom and the closet. Hallelujah!!!

It doesn’t look like much yet. For now, this adventure feels like hope. (And sore muscles!)

Which might be a whole lot like being ready to head out into the world with all the stuff that really matters to me!

ps… the art up top is last summer’s Legend painting. Decoupaged photos of my “permanent” turtle who is, apparently, hiding in a closet during all the moving! The grand-turtle is feeling shy!

pps… what are you ready to head out into the world with? I can help! You just have to raise your hand. Or, in this case, CLICK HERE so the calendar elves can hook you up with time for a wee chat, on me. Turtles welcome, too!

Sue Boardman, Certified Intentional Creativity®
Color of Woman Teacher & Coach