Tuesday, January 28, 2020

My Hour of Power



I remember a few years ago listening to a podcast by Crystal Andrus Morissette from The S.W.A.T. Institute (Simply Women Accredited Training) as she was talking about how women especially need to make time for self-care and take the first hour of their day to themselves, no emails or dealing with anyone else, because you can't take care of others if you don't first take care of yourself. It was a message that stuck with me.

I started to create what I now call my "Hour of Power", the first hour of my day where I shower and dress, then meditate and stretch before doing anything else. It's my time to focus on my inner co-Creatrix, my inner Goddess, to connect with my Higher Self and the Universe and to BREATHE. 

I fell out of that habit for awhile, clearing emails first and reading some of my daily affirmation ones, but I've gotten back on track since doing some reading about how millionaires start their day, and that's also about self-care before letting blue screens come into play, or other people. 

Now, one thing I will say is that was easy for me since my children were in their teens and getting themselves up and going for school, I was self-employed from home, and my husband is the coffee maker of the family. Maybe you have small children and are not such a morning person that you feel like getting up an hour before everyone else to do this. I get it. Then make it your last hour after the kids are in bed, or take an hour after dinner for yourself. Favorite show on then? Record it and watch it on the weekends. TV shouldn't be more important than YOU. 

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

My New Planner for 2020



Anyone who knows me knows that I'm really particular about things, and that I love colorful design. If I could draw, I'd do a bullet journal, aka bujo. But I can't, though I am artistic and have a great eye. So I've been searching for years to find a day planner design that I love. I've thought I found it a few times, but this year as I was searching for a change, I stumbled across an Etsy shop that has the most beautiful planner insert, or refill, designs I've ever seen! I don't have enough words for how gorgeous Manu's designs are, honestly. It's a shop out of Germany named Manu Design Studio, and she offers printed and printable designs in monthly, weekly and daily formats plus extras like the tabbed inserts to go between them, notes pages, etc. 

Now, something this lovely, and with a change in size from personal to A5, which is unavailable here in the US, I needed a very special planner cover and I knew just the shop because Kecheli Notebook has the most beautiful covers for planners, journals and notebooks that I've ever seen, and since I have one of hers already in the personal size, I know they're also top notch quality, designed with a care for detail and sturdiness. Sezin is truly an artist and it shows, using things like handmade lace and mixed materials. 

This custom cover is exceptional, and she has many lovely new designs in her shop, as well as designs that will work for men and women. No matter your taste, you can find one that works for you, and if it's not available yet then Sezin will make it for you! It was a pleasure to work with her on this custom design, something more feminine than I would normally purchase, but it truly fits my style and that of Manu's gorgeous planner inserts. 

Speaking of personalization, I loved the fact that since it's from her printable design, my daily planner insert pages didn't have days, holidays, etc in it so that I could personalize that as well for the days that I observe with the names that I use for them, and also putting the moon phases in on the days they fall in my time zone since many pre-printed planner inserts don't use EST and often place it on the wrong date for me. They also have holidays that I don't observe, or names I don't use for them, so it was refreshing to be able to completely set this up myself. This year, Manu printed it for me. Next year, I hope to have a printer that can handle higher volume and purchase the printable file and then print my own from then on, though it really was very affordable to have Manu print it for me and it didn't take long at all to get here from Germany.

Speaking of the moon phases, I would be horribly remiss if I didn't mention the moon phase stickers from Julie at Symposi Press out of my home state of NH! You can see her New Moon sticker in the curl of the J for January in the bottom right image, and although I bought her smallest ones so that it rather blended into the design, she has other size options and phase options available. Her stickers are also of high quality, and this is my second purchase from her as well. I tried others last year in my other planner and I wasn't as happy with them as I am with Julie's. She has other stickers available as well, and she dispatches them quickly. 

So, my new planner is an international Etsy collaboration that I customized to my needs and desires, and I couldn't be happier! This is the closest to a bujo that I'll get! All of these shop owners are a pleasure to work with and very sweet, often including extras and doing extra special packaging that you just won't find from large companies, which is why Etsy is where I look first now for such things. 

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

My Favorite Tarot de Marseille Deck



During 2019 as I went deep with a focused study of the Tarot de Marseille, I purchased a lot of TdM decks, some of which I liked and some I didn't. I've given away some, and I have a few top faves, but the Tarot de Marsella Robledo Edicion MMXVI by Pablo Robledo is my top favorite. It's a limited edition deck, so it's not always in stock, so when it was last available I actually purchased two copies, one that was opened but virtually unused from eBay and a new, unopened one from Collect Tarot which I've squirreled away in my safe. If it becomes available again, I plan to get one more copy to have on reserve since I do actually use this as both a personal and a working deck. But I do also take really good care of my decks, so these two should last me a good, long time. 

I love the aged look of this deck with a modern feel. It looks like it's been sitting in an ancient tavern for a couple of hundred years just waiting to be found, and yet the rounded edges and modern high quality card stock give it an ageless but contemporary feel. It has what appears to be a UV coating, but it's got rather a matte finish to it with a slight texture, and slides very nicely. This deck just feels really good in the hands! 

Although the fronts and backs are aged, the edges are just white and rather glare, so in order to make the coloring more uniform and really give it that aged look, I edged using Antique Linen from the Tim Holtz Distress Ink collection. I buy the 4 packs of smaller ink pads because I find those work better for deck edging than the larger ones, but try it and see what works for you because I have to admit, I have a whole slew of extra colors that I've never used. However, I buy them at Michael's with 50% off coupons and have them for other uses in the future because I intend to get a lot more crafty after we move to NH and open our shop.

Anyway, if you read with, or are learning to read with, the Tarot de Marseille this is one deck I highly recommend if you can get a copy. If you're on Facebook, you can get in touch and request that Pablo prints another run of it, maybe with enough requests he'll do so. ;)

If you order a reading from me and want me to use this deck specifically, please feel free to request it!