Hello Treasure Seekers! It’s Tuesday! Here I am starting fresh. It is like I am beginning again! I know it has been a while since I have been blogging, and my new schedule will have me writing in this category every two weeks, instead of every week. I really needed a break, and it is time to get back into the Blogging habit. It is a good thing for me to do, and I enjoy Blogging.
I am writing my first book. I have put aside the first draft to begin again, this time with a second draft. The first draft hasn’t been shredded, in fact, it will help me to perfect my second draft. Some of it is definitely worthy of making it into my book. Other parts need to be written with a new perspective, to have it in the correct point of view. I had to get a feel for where I am going with the stories and to do that, I needed time to think about what I did, and what I want to do.
One of my gifts is that I love to write, and tell stories. I have written song lyrics, and a poem or two. I have written a lot here on the Blog, and some people have told me that it is like a journal. In a way, it is. It is written from my heart, and that is where all of my stories come from. I used to write in journals, so maybe that is why it may read like a journal to some people. For me, it is not the same.
There is a lot more thought behind what I write here. My journals were written when I was a teenager and a young adult. They were a lot less polished, more raw than what I write here on the blog. Nevertheless, I treasure all of the words I write, like the hidden gems they are. Some are kept hidden, from my past, and they will stay there. It is where they belong. The Blog is constantly being polished to shine. Every change I make is heading in the right direction for me. I am hoping that you are still going to be reading as I keep writing. That is another one of my treasures. You.
This afternoon, when I got home from work, I checked my Stats. I know the GDPR is coming up, and I am working on preparing my website for the change. I have seen very low activity in the past little bit. Imagine my surprise when I saw a jump in the numbers! It went from 3 or fewer views to 24! Weekend Warrior from this past weekend stirred up some views. That makes me smile, to know that people have been waiting for me to write more Blog stories.
Wow. For those of you that are with me on this adventure, thank you. Really. It means a lot to me when the numbers reflect that you are paying attention. I write for you to read because you matter to me. My stories mean something to you too. I hope that this pattern continues and that you will stick with it and with me. Oh my gosh, this just makes me smile!
So how can I help you to grow in your own way with me? It is something I have been thinking about when I was preparing for this story. I have started so many new projects in the last year and a half. I have tried new things and challenged myself. Sometimes, there have been things that didn’t work. I am too stubborn to just quit. I am just not that kind of a person. I may stop in my tracks to get my bearings, and then go full speed ahead in whatever direction I need to go next. How can you do this?
Trust Your Gut! Ha! If you read my Blog, that is another category, but the title lends itself here with a different purpose. Start with one thing. Something that scares you a little. Or challenges you. Go with it. If it doesn’t work, there are two possibilities. Either it isn’t your thing (which means you need to try something different next time) or you need to rethink what happened, and try it again from a different angle. That is it. It is okay to try things and decide that you don’t want to do them again. The important thing is to keep trying new things. Keep pushing for what you really want, even if you are scared, even if you don’t know what that thing you want is yet. Time is going to pass whether you watch it or become a part of it. I choose to participate, and what an adventure I have begun. I am on my way to things I never thought I would be able to do. I am, in fact, surprising myself. You have the power to do it too, if you decide to participate in your own life, instead of watching it pass you by. Do something new! Let me know what you did in the comments below. I can’t wait to help you discover new things about yourself. I want to know what works for you, and what doesn’t.
Need an example? #DanceWithJanet was something I tried this spring. I thought about it, planned it in my mind, practiced when I got my feet to join in on the project. It took some convincing. I KNEW I wanted to do it. I didn’t know how. I do Zumba. I like it. I make up the moves that work for me to get through the class. That is what I did in my blooper reel. I spent 2 days filming, one with a friend, and one on my own. I did it. This past weekend, Janet Jackson was on the Billboard Awards. She was getting the Icon Award, and she did sing a little. Loved it. The thing that made me want to jump up and down was the little dance section at just over 2 minutes into the performance. She did her dance to IF! That is the song I chose for my audition. I was blown away. I am still giggling and shaking my head. Grinning from ear to ear. She must have watched. She may not add me to her show, but I might have added a touch of Tishspiration to her life. I have convinced myself of this, and that it wasn’t just a coincidence. #Tishspiration. It is a word I made up, with a whole lot of potential. I am going to use it to move forward with my journey. I am playing with my creativity and imagination, and it is really surprising me.
There is one final thing of note for my #DanceWithJanet audition. I did it. I sent it in. No regrets. I was on Twitter after the Award show, and one tweet stood out to me. Someone wrote, “I should have tried out for #DanceWithJanet.” Someone else out there regrets not doing something that I actually did. I am not the person with regrets. That is something I can think back on and smile. Scream a little, jump up and down about, and clap my hands for. I DID IT!
I was wondering today if Janet Jackson has any idea how much she impacted my life just for allowing me to try? Not only have I felt the joy of actually doing something to change my life, but the responses I got from friends and family were nothing short of amazing. The support and comments from so many people really made it worthwhile. Okay, and so did the actual completion of the project, but the reactions on the internet really surprised me. Nothing but positivity. For this, I also want to thank Janet Jackson. I didn’t know how many people truly cared about me and what I am doing in my life. It makes me think that I am on the right path and that I must keep going. #Tishspiration is just beginning. Wait until you see what I am working on next! There is a hint at my Youtube channel, Tishspiration Station. By the way, if you didn’t see the Audition video, or the progress/blooper reel, you can find them there. It is where the word Tishspiration started, with that audition video, so it is fitting that they were my first two videos on my Youtube Channel. I am conceptualizing what to tackle next there. It won’t be anything with music or dancing at this time, due to copyright laws. I am still crossing my fingers that the videos I have posted there keep the music. It was a part of the audition, so it was not in any way meant to do anything but share my adventure. It was never intended to earn money or claim any rights to the music. It was her sone, for her open competition. I can’t just do that with any music I love. There are songs that allow usage on Youtube. I may have fun someday with other songs and dances. For now, I am working on my first Vlog on youtube. Stay tuned! Vlog #1 TBA. I am just getting started on this adventure! I hope you will join me because I am glad that you are here!
Hello Weekend Warriors! It has been a while, but I am trying to get back on track with the Blog. I am currently watching an Award Show after watching a Wedding yesterday. I along with a vast majority of the world, tuned in for the marriage of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. I hope they get to try Sussex Golden Ginger Ale for a toast some day. It is my preferred mix for whiskey.
Let’s back up a bit. Friday night we made the trip outside of the city to a smaller town to watch The Avengers Infinity War Movie. There was a lot to keep track of, but as a Marvel fan, it did not disappoint. I look forward to watching it again, to catch anything I may have missed. I am looking forward to 2 other movies. I want to see Book Club because it looks hilarious. I am also wanting to see Deadpool 2. I cannot wait to laugh right from my toes at Deadpool 2. I really enjoyed the first one, in all its inappropriate hijinks.
I did not get up early to watch The Royal Wedding yesterday. I did record it, so I could watch it on my schedule. I had coffee, not tea. I cried a little, at the beauty of love. I don’t think I cried at weddings until I got married myself. I understand what it means, and the depth of feelings that are wrapped up in the ceremony. I felt it while watching Harry and Meghan.
People have hated on the wedding, the makeup, the dress, and well I have a few things to write about that. I thought Meghan looked beautiful Yes, she is an actress, but she wasn’t working yesterday. She was living her life and marrying a Prince. In real life. She wasn’t over the top, she was respectable and beautiful. The Queen is a tough critic, and there are a lot more restrictions in all things Royal that must be taken into consideration when The Queen of England is going to be an in-law. No pressure, with that and the whole world watching too.
I think it was lovely, start to finish, even with the fanfare, and the wild sermon. It was a memorable event, and I am glad I watched. It reminded me of my own wedding, and how it was very memorable, for a different reason. We got married on the day of Hurricane Earl, almost 8 years ago. If you can’t have yourself a Royal Wedding, then I recommend allowing the weather to make the day memorable. We survived, and they say rain is good luck on a wedding day. I wonder what a hurricane means?
On to Sunday. Today I went to Church, took a nap, fired up the barbeque, and watched the Billboard Music Awards. As you know, I entered the #DanceWithJanet competition. I didn’t get a call yet, so I wasn’t on stage. However, I think I might have made an impression on Ms Jackson. She used the same music clip that I did for my audition. That cannot just be a coincidence! I believe I may have had a teeny tiny success in #Tishspiration, in that she picked the same song I did for my audition for her performance tonight. I wasn’t there dancing, but my heart was singing! The whole experience was so much fun, and it might have just gone over the top!
I am trying to figure out what to do to prepare my website for GDPR. The deadline is Friday. I am going to see what WordPress.org and Bluehost where I purchased my domain name from have available for advice and options. The store is not live yet, so sales are not yet an issue. When I set the store up, I will have a better idea of what to do to be compliant. For now, I just have to get it as ready as I can in the next few days.
Other than that, I have been working on my Youtube Channel Art. Tishspiration Station is a new project.
I had a few trial runs for this project, but I am pleased with this result. Now to get back to things like oh, I don’t know, writing and jewellery designing. I am breaking up the quantity of blog posts to have more quality and more time for other projects. I am trying to get the new concept for my first book nailed down for the second draft of my first book. I am submitting other writing projects for publication in a few different places. I am finalizing the concept for the Cat Tales Jewellery Collection. The Book Bling will have small collections, maybe one piece per book. It is meant to be specific to the book and has meaning for the fans. I have 3 concepts for my first 3 books. I have a lot on the go, all the time.
This week in Treasure Seeker Tuesday, I want to write about someone very important. YOU! The world is a harsh place at times, and it is easy to get lost in the shuffle. People disappear in the mundane routine of work eat sleep repeat. I am writing today to tell you that you matter and that you need to stop existing and start living. Treasure Yourself! What do I mean by that?
Everyone on this planet is capable of making choices. Some people choose to fly under the radar and just sit in the background to avoid the spotlight. It isn’t for everyone to be the centre of attention all of the time. I think we all get our chances to shine in the world, but it is up to us to grab on and go for the ride. When it is your time to show the world what you can do, you need to own it.
I have spent many years of my life just surviving, and I have realized that I was meant to thrive. I am on a mission to tell stories, here in the Blog and also in my books. I do not know how successful this adventure will be, but I know that I am determined (okay, stubborn) enough to see it through to the finish line. I have literally come to life since I stumbled onto the path I am on, and I can honestly say that I have no regrets. It is lighting a fire in my soul called passion, and it is sometimes flickering but never extinguished. When I am on a low burn, that is when I need to find the desire to try something different or do the things I do not want to do so that I can get back to doing what makes me happy.
When I am quiet, and I let my thoughts roam, I come up with some brilliant ideas. They could be jewellery designs, topics to write about here on the blog, or plans for my current WIP (work in progress aka book.) I can solve problems, and create a solution just by sleeping on it. I can find so much joy when I press publish on a blog story like I will with this one because I know that I was inspired just before I decided to write, and it has a purpose and a message.
So do you. You are reading this because you are looking for something. Inspiration, guidance, hope. Something makes you read this category, or the title caught your eye. I am told that the featured pictures are getting stale, and that will be one of the changes I think seriously about this month. I need to work on this website. I need to edit my WIP. I don’t really want to do either of those things, any more than I want to clean my house from top to bottom or crawl out of bed to face the work week, especially on Mondays. Sometimes, you have to do the things you don’t want to do so that you can do the things you want to do. Adulting is hard.
I used to go around cranky saying that I hated being responsible. I was really miserable deep down inside before I rekindled my love for writing. The answers are within you, and being cranky all of the time, as a victim of circumstance is not one of them. I am writing today to tell you that you have to do some soul searching to find your answers.
Just like everything else, anything worth doing is never easy. If it was, we would all be doing it already. You have to ask yourself the tough questions, and then be patient enough to learn the answers.
Bad things happen. To everyone. The hardest thing is to pick yourself up by your socks and move on. Move over. Move around. Whatever obstacles stand in your way, it is up to you to find the way to crush them and seize your answers. If you just take a little tiny step, you will see that you can take another one. After that, you can keep moving forward, one baby step at a time, until you are moving forward by leaps and bounds, bracing yourself at the sharp corners, and tumbling like a pro when something dares to try to slow you down. You will stumble, and you will fall. The only thing to do is get up and try again. The only thing I ever gained from giving up was being cranky all of the time. I don’t want to be that person. Go find your baseball glove and start throwing the curveballs. Don’t dodge them. Catch them, and throw them right back where they came from.
Do you remember reading the Choose Your Own Adventure books? I used to love them. I would read the first ending, and then I would reread all of the other options until I had learned every scenario. That is how you need to approach life. We don’t know how it will end until we try all of the possible scenarios. Choose wisely, and start living to your fullest potential. I am only beginning to discover just what I really am capable of doing. The world is not ready for me yet. I am full of surprises, and I am going to keep pushing my boundaries as far as I can. The only thing standing in my way is myself. I choose to Treasure Myself and trust in what feels like I am meant to do. Treasure Seekers, do it. Treasure Yourself. Open your heart and mind to the possibilities, and believe in yourselves. I can do more than I ever thought was possible. So can you. Go get it!
In Treasure Seeker Tuesday this week, it is time to tell a story. Once upon a time, more than a few years ago, I was chasing another dream. A local craft store had decided to close. I talked to the owners, I made a business plan, I presented it to a committee, and it was rejected. It was rather deflating. The dreams were dashed, and I put it away. It is hard to put yourself out there for a dream to have it crushed. Really hard.
Inexperience was probably the biggest factor in the rejection. I did not know how to make a business plan. I didn’t have any money of my own to use as an investment. From that rejection, I then tried to create my own jewellery business, which I have yet to officially launch here, on the website. It used to be known as Tish’s Treasures, which was launched years ago at the local Farmer’s Market. I gave it a good try, for 2 years, but there were restrictions. There I was, a brand new entrepreneur, chasing my dreams of turning my hobby into a sustainable source of income; stuck following someone else’s rules. I was allowed to sell beaded ornaments and suncatchers, but not my jewellery. That venture was doomed before it even started.
Tish’s Treasures turned back into a hobby, one that made appearances with me as a vendor in different craft shows. I did sell a piece or two, here and there, but it never really took off. It wasn’t until this past January, when I pulled my product out of a local store, that I realized that the old business, under the old name, was holding me back.
I haven’t launched any of my product here yet, officially. I have shared my new business name, Tish MacWebber, Always Blinging… I have yet to take pictures to post products for sale on this website. I have dreams and plans, but they are larger than life. My imagination knows no boundaries.
Writing books and being a jewellery designer is something that works in my mind. I don’t know if I am going to be able to make it work in the real world. As I started writing this, I realized what is holding me back. I’m terrified of failure. Literally terrified.
I have followed my dreams before. Not with as much conviction as I have had this time, but I have tried before. I do not like being told no, and I certainly do not like to be proven to be wrong. I can admit when I am wrong and apologize. But how do you apologize to your toughest critic, yourself?
I have grown a lot since I wrote my first business plan. One of my peers is encouraging me to use her template to write my own business plan. I have been avoiding it like the plague. You guessed right, I am scared to try.
Which sounds ridiculous when you think about it. I have spent very little money on my adventure this far, and I am not ready to give up. Not by a longshot. Despite this very thing, I am avoiding writing my books right now. I am scared of not being able to finish them. Yeah, I know, stopping is the fastest way to never finishing them. I have bailed on a lot of projects in my life. This dream is not going to be one of them.
You might think I have things all together on this side of the computer. Nope. I am not an organized planner at all, even though I have two 2018 agendas that match and are waiting to be used. I bought two sizes so that one could be portable if I needed it, and the other would be my main desk planner. One does help me to keep track of appointments and my husband’s work schedule. They are not being used to their full potential.
Neither am I. While I am Always Thinking… I am not always doing. Therein lies one of my problems. I am not taking action. I am keeping up with the Blog, but it has been a lacklustre effort of late, and I am changing that right now. I am writing something meaningful again, not just writing for the sake of the commitment to the schedule I set up for myself.
I am at a crossroads while I write this. I have two choices. I can say to heck with it and walk away. That would be the easy option. It would lead me back to a life of putting up and shutting up. Taking whatever comes at me, and losing myself in circumstances. Woe is me, the universe is out to get me, and I am helpless to do anything about it. That really is what my life was like before I started putting myself out there and trying to find my purpose and passion. There is the teeniest, tiniest spark left inside of me. That flame needs to be fanned, and nurtured, and fed to grow. It is the part of me that makes me shake my head when I am writing about giving up. It is the part of me that fuels my passion, and I have to let it flourish. To let this spark go out is to let the creative dreamer inside of me die of boredom, frustration, and hopelessness. That is not something I am willing to do, no matter how scared I am of putting my work and myself out into the world again. A failure is only a true failure if you let it beat you. If you pick yourself up and shake the negativity off, to try something different, change your perspective and attack it from a different angle, you win at life. I want to win at life. I need to follow my dreams. I haven’t felt this good about one of my blog posts in a while, so I am taking that as a good sign, and that I am on my way out of whatever was dragging me down.
I have to share one more experience here, with you. It was from before I even tried to open a craft store on my own, and failed. I was in need of legal advice. I met with a lawyer. I told him about my issues, and he advised that it was not the kind of thing that he could help me with. We had a conversation, and he listened to me talking about this crazy idea I had to open my own craft store. I had a floor plan and had talked to people about flooring and storage and the interior design. I wasn’t ready to present the business plan at that point, but it was clear to the lawyer that it was something that lit a fire inside of me, he could sense that I was passionate about this idea. I had other friends at the time see the same thing, and they were excited for me and with me as I gave it my best shot. It didn’t work out.
The lawyer did two things that day that I will never forget. The first one was that he didn’t charge me a dime. How often do you ever hear people say that about a meeting with a lawyer? Not too many. The second thing was a little more insightful. He encouraged me to keep working on my dreams. He told me that he wasn’t sure that this was the right path for me at that time, but he was certain that I was going to be successful at something, he just didn’t know what, or when. Here I am trying something new, and pushing myself harder than I ever have before.
I might just surprise myself and do just what I set out to do this time. Write my books and design jewellery together, because that is how I want it to be. My passion, my dreams, and my rules.
This story may appear in part or in whole in my second book. I am calling it The Art Of Surprising Yourself, which I announced earlier on my social media platforms this week. This is just an example of something that you might find in my second book. What do you think?
In this week’s Trust Your Gut; Push It Real Good, I am pushing myself. I am my own worst critic, and sometimes I am really hard on myself. When I fall off the wagon, it’s not usually a small thing. I don’t do anything the easy way, and I don’t tend to minimize things. When I get back on track, I tend to go all out. Until the next slip up.
I have been working harder to stay on the plan. The scale reflects it. FINALLY! I am happy to say that I am down 3 pounds. That is worth celebrating! A few changes do make a difference. I made it to Zumba twice, and I just finished about 30 minutes of shovelling heavy snow. There is another storm, and I am home first, so I get to shovel as much as I can before my husband comes home. I cleared the steps and walkway and made a path to the street. That took me 30 minutes. At that time, my thumbs usually start getting cold. I learned the last time that if I ignore them and keep going, it will be a painful experience as they warm up. I don’t know if it is caused more by poor circulation, or if it is a side effect of diabetes called diabetic neuropathy. I used to think it was just the one thumb, and although that one does seem to be affected more by the cold.
Diabetic neuropathy can be very painful. I have had nerve pain, and my new doctor is wondering if I am experiencing it because of diabetes. I can’t say for sure. I hurt my thumb that is really sensitive to cold temperatures, years ago, and I always thought that it was a side effect of hitting my thumb. Now I am not so sure, as they were both bothering me tonight.
I also have pain in my right thigh. Not all the time, but it can bring me to tears when it is bad. I have discovered that it is coming from my hip flexor muscles. I have had physiotherapy and acupuncture to try and release whatever is causing it. It is a pinched nerve, so I try and stretch the muscles when I can. I would not wish nerve pain on my worst enemy. Just another reason to keep pushing myself. When I lose weight, the thigh problem may go away. That would be wonderful.
I am a little down this week, as my blog has not been getting as many views as it used to. I don’t know what to think. I do know I am going to keep writing, and hopefully, it will turn around. If you are reading this, thank you. I need all the support I can get on my journies, and I hope in some way I can help people with my writing. The only way to know is to keep on blogging.