The Joy Journal is so Healing by Tiffany Belle Harper

I enjoy Instagram when I want to find something or to see what those I care for are up to, because it’s comparatively positive compared to other media platforms that are causing a lot of hysteria not to mention algorithms and fake news. There are some vulnerable people out there living in the horrors and they should stop looking at it!

Last week I started following Mrs (beautiful) Laura Brand on instagram – long over due. I believe she works with cyclical cycles and you can feel her words describe nature – it’s sincere and passionate. Her instagram page is just lovely – there’s no bravado – you can fall into her descriptive – you want to be out there with her rummaging amongst the flora and fauna looking for petals and potions to make good use of craftiness. Perfect for anyone feeling stuck indoors and in particular those caring for children or with mental health problems heightened by this situation. Like I say, please try to stay with the positive. It is not all doom and fear out there. There’s hundreds and thousands of people doing fantastic things in the real world. Actions really do speak louder than words and that’s why when I go online, I love to look at pictures of nature and interiors. Baking and positive quotes – not to mention street art and good causes. It makes me feel so good about each day when I begin to fall to concern about the future, in particular for those less fortunate than me. I have been there and the fear of not knowing whether you have a home the next day is not worth beginning to describe. I worry about everything. I don’t want people to suffer this way.

Laura herself is a mum of two but you don’t have to be a parent or guardian to enjoy her little projects and you don’t need money either which makes all this hugely elaborate – especially in current times. She’s making things with nature and basic resources. Playing outside with kids in the mud and the elements – it’s really healing so please take a look as you may too find play to take your mind from many factors to include creative blocks which can come alongside depression or a sense of despair. There’s even beauty tips, for instance soap and mud masks that cost little to make.

Playing in the garden and the local woods is what I loved best about being young and it takes me right back to my own childhood when I used to wander around with a stainless steel mixing bowl collecting leaves, stone and soil and really believing I was making cakes for squirrels and fairies to eat in my nests (I made a lot of dens). You don’t see enough of this in the modern times and the great thing is outdoor play is free. Her book’s named The Joy Journal which is good as it invites a second, a third and on. Laura Brand is lovely. She reminds me so much of a friend of mine Nel Kuk. Nel bought her first child up completely in a forest in Poland. She’s is totally sustainable. It is amazing how we can use nature to bring the best to children. It’s time and resources that are readily made to enjoy.

I live happily with my inner child – it can help me through anything – as all we need is love, play, a roof over our head and goals to accomplish. But ‘out time’ for recreation is best enjoyed with nature. Nature is with us all year round – you don’t rip it out of packets at Christmas. The Joy Journal is good parenting. And good parenting is applicable to our inner child = a book for everyone who wants to play because everyone can afford it. It’s a healing book. Healing for nature as all to often we forget it is there. A lot of my friends are sustainable and I try to be. Living by the sea means we have pebbles, sand and stones. The seagulls – feathers. But I do miss the rawness of grass and soil too. Yet, I am thankful as there are those living in flats without gardens who must be missing nature and I worry for them.

Today I am feeling anxious about my project as I want to start sharing it but I am going to hold back as I feel so protective of the space. It’s our heart and soul so we are waiting for better times as I cannot be in two places at once. Although we do have a guardian taking care I just want to nest. A strong sense of laying down roots. There will be plenty of sky gazing. Please bring clarity. Be kind. There’s so much work to be done to help our planet. Every step counts. Just being at one with nature is good for the soul. Green is the new Black. And you Laura – keep going. I know it must be hard work taking care of your family, putting together craftiness and doing so much in one day but it will all be worth it. Keep your ideas flowing and maybe a seaside inspired Journal next!

Tiff. X

Proud of this One by Danielle Robinson – She got a ‘B’ for this!

Thank you to the hoteliers on St Chad’s who have agreed to take Danielle’s survey later.

Tiff. X

Where Have I been?!

I am having a few days off from as much as I can to catch up with my own heart. For a few weeks I have been getting the back of Belleva sorted out. I was going to wait until next year to get it all rendered but my neighbours at Birch Villa got there’s done and it was so lovely I asked the same guys to do mine too. Since the scaffolding was already there etc it made it all more transitional for them to bolt mine on the back of it. I am so chuffed with the finish. I now have a pale pink house to the rear. But for all this time no back yard due to workmen access, Big bags of plaster, tools, pipe work etc. So the dogs and I have been cooped up. 

I got a load of ice this afternoon and took it to my bedroom with a bottle of wine. I drank it all then fell asleep. I woke up about an hour ago, soaking wet and freezing cold – as I somehow knocked the ice over my bed. This is my first afternoon off in ages and I am a real mermaid right now …

I should be delighted at how the hotel is looking. I will be honest I had a bout of bad workmanship here that was beyond horrific but then we met Colin who was introduced to us by Peter the plumber. Peter came along via Michael the electrician. So it is a sort of chain of recommendations and I have some great people around me to help. It has not always been that way but we live and learn together. 

It was my plan to blog about this entire journey. To share the news on my websites etc but somewhere in all of this I wanted to keep myself to me with it all. I told my youngest son today, ‘ I cannot be sensitive and successful.’ Which is a shame really as being sensitive is a big part of my love and showing my own vulnerability within my favourite circles of friendship, family and the work place. But, oh well.

I am not in one place with my heart. I always see ahead and want to move on. I have strived to not ‘fit in’ to such an extent I could feel cloned or ‘clicky’. Such thoughts terrify me. I love to see progress in the world while others are clearly offended by it. But I suppose we all have to be different. Whereas others may cling to belief systems and the past, there are those who thrive on change and optimism. Remaining positive is ‘key’ and to do that we must be careful what we allow in our own zone. 

For a while last week I escaped into social media and went to the wrong places, places that haunted me years ago with such awful memories of a couple who who used psychological and targeted abuse using money and bribery within the animal welfare sector ‘mainly’. All I can assume is that it was my own form of self harm. But by doing this we can process the experiences and move forward with the new. I see that I can all too often be misjudged but this is not of any relevance to my own personal world, life, friends and family. The internet is a place where we can share the best or the worst and it is true that the worlds biggest fuck ups are only based on assumptions and never fact. I am not rich, I have not bought big posh things. I have budgeted, refused financial aid here and used my own flair. Just like any other new small business. So get over it and think with a bigger part of your brain.

So I am taking a couple of weeks off. I hate paperwork but have a fair bit to catch up on. Mainly big companies wanting money from us little people. Automated messages with no compassion. Algorithms and pitiful systems with no method in place for individual situations. Everyone is blaming politics or protests. It is all so pathetic. 

Making smelly things at the forthcoming South Shore Soap Company like candles, bath bombs etc is a hobby more than anything, that grew into a desire to sell these during the deep pit of the last lock down. I like challenges and I enjoy working. But I also like my own space. So this hobby ticked all the boxes and it was something to share with loved ones. The sensories all need stimulus to include ‘smell’ which is something we can all too often take for granted. I am fascinated by our gift of smell and how we can create a mood by using wax, oils and soap. I have slightly altered my formula so it’s a while yet. Basically, you should not put cinnamon bark in soap as it can cause problems, but you can use cinnamon leaf. I did think it was all a bit extreme but our skin is more sensitive than our stomach. So what we put on it is really important. It would seem man-made chemicals are easier to get approved than natural remedies. What is the world coming to, I ask you!? And also the chemist told me I could not use rose petals from the garden. They had to be manufactured not organic from my own soil. Fine. Right. Okay ‘big wig’. I find it hard to accept each person out there selling soap has a license. But anyway I am enjoying the learning curve and at least it is all passed through the right authorities. Unlike tea but that is another story. Yes … I make tea, also.

Anyway, I want some time out from worrying and time in being with me. Which is what I am going to do. And I need to have some Danielle time too as I love cleaning with her and we haven’t got our teeth into Belleva yet. We need to nest at Belleva House. I want to get to know the rooms. I want to feel the energy from each bit of nostalgia entwined with the new. To not worry about other energies but my own. To make what I can of my own world. Each to their own and off goes my phone – a huge burden. Carpe Diem! 

Finally I spent the weekend speaking with a lovely man who sells the coolest pallet furniture in Bristol. I had a flutter of expenditure and I cannot wait to show you what I found …. it is all being made for me. It turned out he lost his Nan on Valentine’s day this year and she wrote a book and a page of it was about me (with a twist). It is such a long story.

Tiff.X

Women in Business, 1870 BC — Suzanne’s Mom’s Blog

Photo via the Met This caravan account is recorded on a cuneiform tablet from the ancient city of Kanesh. Sometimes we forget that the way things have been in recent years — or even recent centuries — are not the way things always have been. For example, we imagine women have come a long way […]

Women in Business, 1870 BC — Suzanne’s Mom’s Blog

Say ‘Doodle Day’

Sometimes when we feel helpless with just wanting a day off. Do it. To stop worrying about commitments and obligations and just Doodle. Feel our own art and crafts without guilt or regret. You can make posters with vectors, pics, quotes and put them around the place. It’s not an expensive hobby and will make you feel ‘spesh’.

Jealousy is a horrid, horrid thing and something I cannot admit to ever feeling because when someone impresses me I want to be friends with them or at least send them kudos. So don’t waste your time with worthless emotions. Turn those small minded thoughts to being original and of a positive mindset. I am going to tackle the cellar. Have a great week and get over it. Life is too short so live it out with some kind of purpose that helps others. It all comes back tenfold. It really does. Smile and Smile Again! It’s contagious.

Tiff. X