Sunday, 26 September 2010
Shout outs - inspirational women
First up is the very talented Gorjuss (aka Suzanne Woolcott), an artist from Glasgow who draws the most beautiful creations that just capture my heart every time I visit her online shop. I struggle every time, not to find something I like, but to decide which of the many gorgeous creations to buy. So far I'm the proud owner of a canvas print, several key rings, and the bookmark pictured above. And yesterday, as part of my 'be kind to myself' weekend, I bought another print. I can't wait for it to arrive. Those who read Suzanne's (and Mr G's!) blog will know that she's not had her troubles to seek, but she still manages to continue creating and to be upbeat and positive.
My next shout-out goes to another Etsy crafter and one of my online 'friends' who although I've never met her I feel I know really well and has helped me stay on the less grey side of life over the last few months. Kitty Pinkstars is one of the most positive and happy people I've ever had the privilege to know. I tell her often that she's an inspiration, and do you know what? Every time she's so genuinely surprised about it that I think I love her just a little bit more each time! Her blog is well worth a read and if you don't already follow it, sign up now - I guarantee you won't be disappointed. Whether you're looking for smiles and happiness or creative ideas, Kitty has it all. (And she makes really cute stuff too!)
Third place in the roll of Crafty Maneouvres honours goes to a new friend I got to know last year in very sad circumstances. Frances was married to a friend of mine at University who died very suddenly (and far too young) last year. I'd never met Frances before but we hit it off immediately (even though one of the first thing I said to her was to comment on her OCD tendencies as she reminds me!) and we've kept in touch ever since. She's been across and stayed at the flat a couple of times, including last time with her Mom which was great. I'm currently keeping my fingers crossed that her application to study at Stirling University next session is accepted and then I'll be able to see her in reality rather than just virtually across the ether. Despite everything that Frances is dealing with in her life, she's another of my friends who inspire me by their positive outlooks on life. Finding Joy is something that Frances has taught me to do, for which thank you! (I've also got to 'know' her sister through Frances and now follow her fabulous foodie blog, which comes complete with home-cooked recipe ideas. Yum!)
Fourth shout-out (and these are in no particular order, by the way) goes to my big sister. Someone I've always looked up to and wanted to be like. We had a spell, like all siblings, when we didn't particulary get on and we used to joke that provided we had the Atlantic Ocean between us, we were great together. Now we've kind of grown into each other and I hate the fact that she's several time zones, a 13 hour journey and several hundreds of miles away. But thanks to the internet and cheaper phone calls, we're probably closer than we've ever been and I have a really cool place to visit every now and then. As well as being my amazing big sister (for whose love, support and advice I am truly grateful), she's also a fantastic Mum, a wise and canny homemaker, a talented crafter, an entrepreneur, incredibly intelligent and amazingly determined. Over the last year or so she's been baring her soul in her Friday Forte blog posts as she battles her way through her rediscovery and attempts to deal with all the shit that life throws at us all. I may not always agree with what she writes, but I am never anything other than impressed by her willingness to tackle the world head on - and so far it looks to me very much like she's winning!! Go sis!
A clutch of shout-outs for my friends, at home and further afield, too. I am truly blessed by the wonderful friends I have. They've been such a support in particular over the past 18 months or so when my life turned itself upside down. And while this is a post about inspirational women, I'll sneak in a big thanks and hug to the guys too!! Couldn't have done it - or at least not so well - without you xx
Finally, no blog post about inspirational women would be complete without a huge enormous magnificent shout out to my wonderful Mum. She dedicated herself to being our Mum and for that I'm truly grateful. She's still there for me whenever I need her and every day something of what she taught me comes back to me and helps me through. My ability to cope with life, I'm sure, comes from her determination, her common sense and her practical approach to the world. She also taught me to cook, sew, knit, crochet, take photographs, love music, grow things and much much more. Thanks Mum. (Dad's pretty special too in case you're wondering!)
So, as I sign off to go to my Tango class I'll just take a moment to say thanks - and to be inspired! Oh, life is indeed good.