How To Keep A Cottage Bunny And {Sir Oliver Twisty Topsy's Tale}

Saturday, June 15, 2019

My dear friends,

Upon learning that I have a cottage bunny, I've begun to have numerous 'rabbit care' requests. So, I thought it'd be a lovely trip down memory lane, to tell of Oliver's story; as well as, elicit some helpful information.

How To Make A Wattle Fence {For Your Victorian English Cottage Garden}

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

My dear friends,

Today is being spent indoors; garden planning with my dear ol' spirited friend, Beatrix Potter.

Yesterday, all through the weekend, and today, I'm using my time wisely, as today marks a week of daily rainstorms. The frogs love it, with their croaking and ribbeting. This is how I imagine the frogs in this type of weather. Dear Ms Magadalene, isn't she a sight with her apron, and bonnet atop her head?

Writing Tips From J.K. Rowling {And Me}, For Old~Fashioned Writers

Monday, June 10, 2019

 My dear friends, 

As you may know, I've been in the woolliest portion of writing my next tale, inspired by my most affectionate hero, Beatrix Potter called, "The Tale of Henny Penny Goody Two Shoes.

Why I had An Emotional Affair {And What All Affairs Mean, According To Me}

Thursday, June 6, 2019

My dear friends,

Well, I'm going to assume that you clicked onto my post, strictly because of the title, am I right?

As a writer/ blogger putting my life and personal experiences out into the universe are something I actually take pride in; if you want the truth. Because in my lil' humble opinion, all too often, I see bloggers holding back. Now- that's not to say that, every blogger out there needs to spill their guts, but for all that is holy- let's be a little more forthright and transparent, shall we?

I can tell right away when a blogger is not letting their truth shine. Perhaps, I need to take a swim stroke backwards- because I feel dagger eyes. Heh... No, truthfully, all I am saying, is that I want to read a blog and feel I can relate to the writer. If you are going to give me fluff and stuff, I can swim on over to Instagram and find that hashtag surface, hashtag fake, hashtag not real, by the truckloads.

In my life, many have judged me for sharing so much here on my blog {my family included}, even to go so far as to tell me, I should be ashamed of myself for what I write. They feel it's a betrayal and that I'm shedding a negative light on the family name. I have no quorums about sharing MY TRUTH. That's what a writer does.

Furthermore, I have the most positive feedback from women that tell me, they are so happy that I am sharing things that would otherwise be left unsaid. I wanted to preface, too, that I share for my healing, and expansion, as well as, give encouragement to other women that may have struggled, like me. It's never for salacious or cruel intentions; only for expansion and personal growth.

Now, let's have a go, shall we?
The emotional affair occurred in 2009. There were no sexual relations {cue the Bill Clinton tapes}, but an affair is an affair if you ask me. Anywho, I had been married at this point for 18 years. I am not, nor have I ever been the flirty type. In fact, I was strict, by the bible, that always admonished my ex to be mindful of his actions with the opposite sex. I used to tell him, even the appearance of adultery is a bad thing. Let's be clear, here, I know that no matter what we as women do or say in a marriage, won't mean a thing if there is no respect. That means for ourselves, our partner or the union of marriage. If a man or woman is going to cheat, they will find a way. No amount of control will stop either of them.

My ex is in the entertainment industry, so, needless to say, I was insecure from the get-go and then to add the entertainment industry on top of that, only spelt disaster. Not because of entertainment per se, but the lacking of self-worth. My ex-husband was always a flirt, {and later I would uncover that he was a philandering adulterer}. Listen up, ladies, if you start dating a man, and you have any sneaking gut suspicion that your man may be unfaithful, you should follow your gut, and run for the flipping hills. It'll only progress and get worse. I ignored my gut when the ex and I first got together. There were red flags everywhere, but I was so blissed out, I ignored them. He was always doing things that hurt me. Nowadays, though, I don't beat myself up; in fact, I actually thank the bugger for his philandering ways. He actually helped me to be the woman I am today, by being a complete ass. (eeekkk...)

Read this post {here} That I wrote about mating with your own soul and emotional mirror reflection.

Mmmmkay, back to the subject at hand. What led up to my emotional affair.

He was my ex- husbands friend for over a decade. They were in church movies together; mingling in the same crowd. He spent a lot of time with our family; was single, and an ex-communicated member of the Mormon church. Hence, That's one of the reasons, I think, my ex took him under his wings, so to speak.

Well, as luck would have it, my ex took a trip for work, in the middle of us moving into our newly purchased home. My ex suggested having his friend come to help me with house "stuff."

We had been friends for over a decade, and I appreciated the time he'd spend with me. He'd actually carry on a conversation with me; compliment me, by saying, I looked beautiful in my old skirts and liked all the things my husband was annoyed by. Can you spell D-I-S-A-S-T-E-R? It all worked out in the end, as it solidified how much I desired to leave the marriage. This was a paramount decision; that actually worked out for me, because things are always working out for us, even when it seems they aren't.
Looking back, after living through the experiences with my ex, he was constantly circumventing. I have often wondered, too, if I allowed that to happen? You know that saying, " people treat you, the way you allow them too?" Yeah, I really believe that! I will say, too, and it may be difficult for some to read; however, I have come to the conclusion that it had to do with the "saviour" mentality. Do you know what this is? Let me explain. My mother exhibits this behaviour, I struggled with it, and many women struggle with it, that have grown up in abusive or alcoholic environments. Women cover for the addict, by constantly making up the difference. It's a self-worth issue on the part of the "abusee". For example, {I'm speaking from experience when I was young}, my father would come home from work, get plastered, and then decide he was hungry. My mother was to wake up {regardless of the time} and make him food. I remember he was so angry after the food was made, he threw the whole pot of food onto the floor. Who do you think cleaned that up, after my father passed out in his own piss? My mother did. But, who do you think comes off as the person to save the day? My mother. She can use the victim card to receive sympathy from others. Thus, all active participants are getting their natural human needs met, even though it's complete dysfunction, it works. I had to retrain myself out of this behaviour, and let me tell you; that when a person has control issues {kids of alcoholic parents}, it's not easy. I had to allow the mishaps to occur and let nature takes its course.

So, for instance, once, when my ex was in a fit of rage, screamed at me because Subway put mayonnaise on his sub sandwich, he threw it against the wall, where it stuck. My little girl began trying to clean the mess, and that's when I lost my mind. That day, the straw broke the camels back. I was seeing the behaviour passed onto my child; through watching me. I began screaming, "over my dead body will anyone but my ex, clean that sub up!" I didn't care if the sub stayed on the wall for 6 months and we had guests coming over. I was ready to let him look like a fool.
Needless, to say, he cleaned the mess, as it was gone the next morning. Now- I know what you may be thinking here, ummm... grrr...CRAZY TOWN! Yes, I know. I don't want you to feel alone if this is, or has, happened to you. The problem is that many want to escape through pretty, frilly things; but, when we get to the brass tacks, we can then begin to heal and move forward. I speak of this because I was this way myself. It doesn't have to be a negative thing to carry for the rest of our lives, and that's why I am sharing it, I feel as though, many women, if they knew why they did things {cover for their mate, or child, for instance}, they might be inspired to change. I truly believe, with all of my heart that the universe allows all sorts of experiences to come to us, not as a way of punishment, but as a way to inspire us to expansion. How else would I have learned? We learn through life experience, that's the only way. I am so appreciative for my experiences, always. It's just a matter of shifting our focus to see all the occurrences with beauty and look at them with a heart of appreciation, instead of, being treated cruelly by a "God" that most humans deem vengeful. That is not who my or your God/Source is. AT ALL!
" I dwell in possibility." ~Emily Dickinson

Yep, I carried that rescue mentality with me into my marriage with my ex. He would act slow-witted, and because I was embarrassed and had low-self esteem, I would make excuses for him. It's an interesting scenario, when we allow others, even those we love very much, to take responsibility for their own lives. Amazing things happen. I believe that we as women must truly work to become self-sufficient and self-confident. That is our sole purpose; to fall, completely and madly in love with ourselves.

And when this self-love transformation occurs within us, women like myself won't need to have some man tell us we're wonderful, and pretty, because we'll already KNOW!

Most affably yours til my next swim, Raquelxxx

How I Found My {Old-Fashioned, 18th Century, Victorian} Trademark Style

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

My dear friends,

I am happy to report: that I am learning so much about website building, and here's a little snapshot from my iPhone camera, so that you can see how far I've gotten. It may not seem to be much of a change; however, I am going to have a new hosting company, which will make a big difference; especially, with having a drop-down menu. I think I'm most excited, out of everything, about the drop-down menus.
To say, that the topic of personal style has come easy for me would be an understatement, and I suppose it became more interesting to me when I left my {previous} marriage. Do you recall; that I hopped a plane with only two suitcases? So, the only clothing that I have to this day, are the few items {because let's be honest, financially, In these last few years, I have not been shelling out money on clothing}, that was given to me, or that I found at the thrift store.

I wrote here about my style issue, since, long before the ending of my previous marriage.

I tend to wonder If I'm the only one that has struggled in identifying what my true style is. Mind you, style and fashion are two separate things. Fashion is not my cup of tea. In fact, to me, it's boring to the Olympic degree. I'm the girl that wore peter-pan collared shirts with matching skirts in the 3rd grade. I remember distinctively through middle school, a few of the popular girls told me that I was cute, but, that I needed a complete makeover.

What has bugged me over the years; is that women who dress in a style; for example, such as retro, are considered "cool." But a woman dressed in prairie clothes, don't get the same admiration. Wait. I should probably take that back. In the past few years, once I began owning my style; I have had folks come up to me all of the time {which mostly happens in the grocery store, of all places}, and tell me that I dress lovely. It's interesting too; that men seem to be the most receptive to my style.

Might I add, that after having a yard sale this weekend, clearing out the guest room made me think of a brilliant idea? I am going to turn our guest room into a full walk-in closet. I am so tired of not being able to see what little items of clothing I have, and Jeffrey has a ton of clothes, too. The closet in our master bedroom is so dinky; claustrophobia sets in, with the mere thought of hanging clothing. What a huge undertaking, but it will be worth it after all is said and done.
I will now intersect this post by quoting Lady Violet from Downton Abbey, " I am a woman with a brain and reasonable ability. Stop whining and find something to do." That, I shall, and I will begin by explaining how I came to find my personal trademark style, and how you can too.

1. Purge

When I left my marriage in 2015, I had two suitcases. It makes the decision of what to keep and let go of very easy. I knew that when I was packing those two suitcases, never to see my wardrobe again; I had to be specific. I took only the things that I NEEDED. However, in your case, you are going to want to take all of your clothes from your closet: collect two boxes; one to donate and one for keeping. You'll want to try on each article of clothing if it's questionable. A tip to remember is that when you put on your clothes, you need to absolutely love every aspect of them. If you haven't worn it in more than six months, you should go ahead and discard it. Often, the main reason people keep clothing is that they have emotional attachments to them. This is probably the most difficult when cleaning out your closet, {cue, Eminem, and sing with me... Because tonight... I'm cleanin' out my closet.}

I have struggled through the years, to find my distinct signature style. Some of my clothing experimentation has been horrendous. In the past, I was known to see something cute {gipsy, hippy}, buy it, and then feel like I had to act a certain way. Allow me to explain. I have vacillated between the hippy look and the Victorian look for decades. I feel a certain way inside when I wear all of my bangles, rings and bandana. And then, when I put on my victorian clothes, I feel more at home. Like, I am more me; than when I am dressed in my gipsy-styled clothing. Does that make sense? However, now that I have come to, "know thyself" in the last few years, I feel I have finally found my trademark style.

2. Organize

I, for one, love an organised space. I even went so far, as to get a certification on the subject. Once I decided to change our guest room into a full walk-in closet, I have been beyond excited. I also have a certification in Interior Design Psychology. I know what makes humans frustrated, happy or calm, all depending on an organised space. For instance, If your closet door has hooks and all sorts of things blocking the closet entrance; it literally has an effect on the brain. Colour is also important in our homes. Think about how you feel when you go on vacation. Most resorts have calming colours. This is called colour psychology. Once you've organised your closet, you may want to apply a fresh coat of paint. Pick a colour that evokes happiness in you. Then, each day you get dressed, it will be a lovely pursuit that you look forward to.

3. Create a Pinterest/ vision inspiration board

Last year, I read this idea from the blog, Forever Amber, and I loved it! This idea is a perfect way to begin collecting all of your style ideas into one place. It's fun to pin a bunch of photos and then analyze them. This way, you can visually see what you naturally lean towards. There are clues, all throughout, if you begin paying attention.

As a way of manifesting, I make a clothing vision board at the beginning of each year. It implants the vision in my mind, and each day I walk past my clothing vision board, It becomes one more step towards actualization. We create through thought. I have used magazines such as Victorian Trading Co., as that has always been my favourite magazine for clothing.

4. Take your measurements and make a shopping list

I, for one, have particular companies that I purchase from, that are always flattering on me. I love cotton, shirts with peter pan collars, and quarter sleeves. I like long flowy skirts, not mid-length or mini. My favourite colours for clothing are a soft pink, olive green, chambray blue and brown.

I have a tiny slip of paper with my body measurements on it, along with a small measuring tape, that I keep in my purse. I use these when I'm out and see something that I like. I normally sew my own clothing, but I also love to shop at the thrift stores. If I see something I like, I pull my trusty tape measure out and see if it will work. Keep your measurements up to date. If you tend to fluctuate with your weight, this is especially important. You don't want to buy things and then have them not fit when you get them home.

I hope this has served you and I look forward to hearing from you.

So, do you know what your signature style is? Anything else I forgot to mention?

Most affably yours til my next swim, Raquelxxx

3 Pearls Of Blogging Wisdom From "My Blogging Secrets" By Amber McNaught

Thursday, May 30, 2019

 My dear friends,

You know those moments when the universe sees fit to bring delightful souls into your world, yeah, that would be Amber McNaught. I'm not quite sure how I came to find her, but if memory serves me, I think I was scrolling through the Instagram discovery page {before deleting social media a few years ago}, looking for bloggers, and I'm naturally drawn to a true-blue authentic redhead, such as myself. {That sounds like I'm Mc Judgy pants, but you can read this post if you are curious as to why I am bias}.

Why I Use Belville Gardens Pruning Shears

Wednesday, May 29, 2019
My dear friends,

Won't you pour some tea, and let us have a visit. I have to tell you a short story. So, you know that I am married to a gardener. He's really a horticulturist/landscaper.

The 4 Things I Learned From Blocking People On Social Media

Monday, May 27, 2019

 My dear friends,

Several months ago, I was put into facebook jail. I know, shocking, right? Well, I used that opportunity to learn something more deeply about myself. It was actually a good thing.

The Art Of The Unfolding {And Why My Grammar Is Not Up To Par}

Thursday, May 23, 2019

My dear friends,

In the past, I was always afraid of taking my writing seriously. The reason being, I have a difficult time with my writing. 

I love English; however, I'm not keen on this process. I feel like I'm back in school. I passed English with flying colours; however, I'll never forget my teacher constantly reminding me that my grammar was not good. Through my life, because of that insecurity, I built a false belief about my intelligence.

The 5 Things All Blogs Should Possess

Friday, May 17, 2019
My dear friends,

Pour some tea, and won't you bring your tea kettle? Mine was broken and had to be thrown into the rubbage bin.

As many of you know by now, if you're avid readers of my blog, you know that I've been a blogger for well over 10 years. I wasn't always as serious about my blogging as I am now, and from the archive visual, it appears to be new. After my divorce, unfortunately, I had to start all over from scratch. Which meant, I absolutely cried on the kitchen floor for two weeks because I had lost 10 years of blog journaling. Ten years, you guys! I was devastated. After getting rip-roaring drunk on wine for two nights, I collected myself and went to work determined to learn how to create a new blog. With the help of a google search bar and many YouTube videos I learned it all myself. Needless to say, I'm very proud of my accomplishments. If nothing else, I have learned to never take defeat lying down, nor ever give up.

6 Ways To Scale Your Energy Levels

Tuesday, May 7, 2019
My dear friends,

Won't you pour some tea, and let us have a visit. I think I spoke to you in a few posts previously explaining that I have had anaemia for most of my life. However, I have not allowed that label to define or limit me. I thought this would be a lovely opportunity to share the 6 ways I have been able to scale my energy levels all while maintaining a highly active lifestyle.

But first, I want to talk about the most important element; the internal psychological benefits.

I have always been an energetic person. I'm not sure if it's because I naturally have a rapid metabolism or If I'm just a hyper person.

I first discovered I was anaemic when I was asked by Weeki Wachee Springs to show support to our community by being a blood donor. I had always thought I was a tired soul because I swam so much. It's a known fact that swimming wears a person out. So on my days off from my mermaid performances, I would sleep close to 15 hours straight.

I was actually happy to learn what the issue was, and ever since I have incorporated tiny things to encourage my mental and physical strength. I will also preface that when our bodies need rest it's so important that we heed the call. Do not feel ashamed for needing to sleep. I think oftentimes folks are quick to judge sleep lovers by assuming we are lazy, when in fact, it's our inner being guiding us into alignment towards the path of least resistance.

6 Ways To Scale Your Energy Levels

1.  Zipp Fizz

I have been drinking Zipp Fizz for about ten years. You can find it at Sam's club and Amazon. That's pretty much the only two places I have been able to find it in the last 2 years. I highly recommend this drink especially, if you struggle with anaemia, and if you enjoy a little caffeine pick me up, It has 120 mg. per serving. I'm not a coffee or soda drinker, so this is a staple at the cottage.  Zipp fizz's main ingredient is B12, which is essential for anaemic folks.

Another little TTT {Treasure Trove Tip} is to add some vanilla liquid coffee creamer and voilĂ  it tastes like an orange creamsicle. It's delicious.
Above: the bottles that have my branding labels are the oils I sell in my Mermaid Junkie Mer~cantile.  I have also curated specific ones for myself and my beloved gardener. 
2. Essential Oils

I swear by essential oils. I haven't been on medication in over 10 years, so essential oils are very important to have in my arsenal. I wear and consume essential oils every single day and I love them so much. If you are leery of using essential oils or perhaps you think they don't work, it's because you believe they won't work. Everything we believe is a direct reflection of how we have trained our minds. When I was going through my aromatherapy certification training they state that it takes most folks at least 5 experiences of using oils to be convinced they work. Men are especially reluctant. However, if you try them and do it a few times you'll see they are wonderful. Think about the Egyptians thousands of years ago, to practice aromatherapy was the only way to live.

I am a doterra advocate, so if you would like me to curate an oil specifically for you, I'd be tickled to do so. Not all essential oils are alike. I use only the certified therapeutic grade, which is doterra. It's one of the purest oils in the world.

I advocate that prevention is key. It's much wiser to prevent illness than to have to correct it, once it's gone fully active.

I use essential oils by placing the oils into gel capsules and consuming them that way. Essential oils are very concentrated and powerful. Just to give you an idea of the strength; one drop of peppermint oil is equivalent to 24 cups of peppermint tea. I have been able to heal every ailment my family or myself has had from essential oils. To name a few: urinary tract infection, yeast infection, gall bladder, arthritis, pain injury, cavities, kidney stone, strep throat, migraines, nausea, weight loss, etc.

 3. Supplements

I take a few supplements that are chewy and made up of organic powder from the root of the plant. You can find a few brands in Whole Foods or Sprouts.

I truly believe with all of my heart that if we care and love our bodies, we will be rewarded and our bodies will love us back.

4. My Spinach Lemonade {A Mermaid's Seaweed Smoothie}
I did a separate post on this, so I will just link it here.
I drink loads of water every day. I add essential oils and floral infusions to give me boosts of energy. 
5. Exercise
I find a way to do some sort of activity every day. I don't necessarily do it to stay in shape, I do it for my mental growth and happiness. Exercise increases endorphins and that's the key to making us happy. I love to jog, practice yoga and walk. Those are my favourites. Find things that you enjoy doing and they won't be a chore for you, you will look forward to them.

Try and remember that exercise isn't about looking like a hottie in your swimsuit or shorts. Yes, that is an added benefit, but we should exercise because it creates a beautiful mind. This took me years to learn, and I don't think I truly understood it all together until I began practising the law of attraction. Remember most folks do things for the external factors {payoff}, but we should always strive to make our insides better first and then it will naturally reveal itself externally.

6. Meditation

I'm a huge believer in the practice of meditation. It is so vital to having energy and not just physically, but mentally as well. I have never in my life felt such energy than after I have sat in meditation. A few years ago, I wrote a lovely post about meditation, which I will link here. I think you will really enjoy it.
I shall write again soon. 

Most affably yours til my next swim, Raquelxxx

4 Ways To Scale Your Business

Wednesday, April 24, 2019
My dear friends,

I'd like to speak to you ladies that are interested in scaling your business. I am not attempting to do anything, except to inspire you to align with your goals, dreams and desires. We all have particulars that we want to achieve.

Whether that is turning your blog into a business; writing a book, or selling your art and crafts.

I see many women lead a conversation by saying, "I do this as a side hobby." In my previous marriage, my husband was the means of income, so in essence, I didn't have to worry about making money to pay for necessities such as the mortgage or water bill. Basically, I could play with no degree of stress to provide financially.

My Spinach Lemonade {A Mermaid's Seaweed Smoothie}

Tuesday, April 23, 2019
My dear friends, 

I thought about just titling this post "A Mermaids Seaweed Smoothie", but then I said to myself two things, "They'll never click over because unless you're a mermaid, even the thought that it would taste delicious would stop you in your tracks and for SEO purposes it's a tricky thing to title blog posts highly niched."

The truth is, I am notorious for changing the names to things and giving everything a nickname. So in good mermaid landlocked humour, I want to still call it 'A Mermaids Seaweed Smoothie' even though there's not an ounce of seaweed in it.

Now having prefaced all that, I am also a person that will not drink or eat something unless it tastes divine. I have never been that gal that would eat diet foods because they're good for me, but taste like rubbage. So when I say this spinach lemonade is yummy, I scouts honour swear to it.
I drink this lemonade every single day, like clockwork. The reason I started drinking it, was because before I started practising the law of attraction, I had lived with the belief that I had adrenal fatigue. I adapted that belief because other people would tell me it wasn't normal that I enjoyed sleeping so much. Nowadays, I know I slept frequently because I had loads of resistance in my awakening state. I was constantly on the lookout for ways to raise my iron levels without impacting my digestive system.

I might also state that I have anaemia. I am not able to donate blood because of it, and if you know anything about anaemia, you are aware exhaustion is apart of your life. I finally found this recipe, tried it and loved it. The best part is there are only a few ingredients and it gives me resounding energy.
A Mermaids Seaweed Smoothie
Ninja Blender {you don't have to use a ninja, I just love my ninja. It blends the ice to perfection, like a snowcone, yum}

Spinach 2 cups {just grab a few handfuls and throw it in the blender

Fresh Lemon Juice 4 tablespoons ( I like a tart/sour lemonade so you can play with the taste by adding or subtracting the amount)

Honey 2 tablespoons {Treasure Trove Tip ~I actually heat my honey up in a little bit of water in the microwave before adding it to the blender of ice. If you don't the honey is too cold and won't blend well.}

Ice and Purified Water {I just guess with the amount of ice and water. I like my lemonade thick.}
And there you have it! Spinach lemonade, it's sweet, cool and refreshing. These are all things I would know about since I live in Florida and I'm a true Southern woman. {smile}

I would love to know if you try this and then swim back and tell me what you think.

How Gardening Taught Me About Perseverance

Friday, April 19, 2019
 My dear friends, 

Yesterday I spent the day in the front garden planting lovely new flowers that my BG {Beloved Gardener} surprised me with as an early Easter gift.

I am constantly thinking, especially when occupied in my pursuits.

As I began to dig, there was unveiling evidence of small cobblestones all throughout the patch of dirt where I was to cultivate. When gardening, before you start, you lay out your plants to see where they will look nice. There is symmetry, height, width and sun availability to take into consideration.

So in my tenacity to spade exactly where I had laid out the flowers, my thoughts about gardening twirled into a metaphor about life.

I could have easily surrendered, to look for other spots in the garden to plant those flowers because the place I was digging was beastly. It took me twice as long, and I was exhausted by days end.

How often do we see other folks in the face of adverse circumstances or lack of determination seek the easy way out; looking for a quick fix or short cut? Perhaps, I should speak individually on this matter. I have seen oftentimes where folks want to skip the arduous work as an entrepreneur, or artist, in order to relieve their plight.

I find that folks want to ride the coattails of others, instead of spending the efforts, necessary time and years to put into the work of success all on their own.

I know the world is made up of NOW, and we spend quite a bit of attention on the arrival of successful individuals. Too often we don't see all of those voyages that were lengthy, tear-jerking, and disappointing.
For example, I have seen a friend that wrote 5 books and spent nights crying because she was hoping that 5th book would've been picked up by a traditional publishing company.{Good news, she finally did get published and they both turned out to be New York Times Best Sellers} Or the woman spending years going on auditions to only get picked over for parts time and again. Those are the moments we don't often see, we see the arrivals-the big breaks, the highlighted reel.

I believe it takes many folks years, and I would hope in the future that we see more of the voyages, so as to inspire folks that are in the beginning/middle stages. I do believe it would create a visual of encouragement. 

When folks skip steps, they are missing all of the beautiful aspects of what will one day be so meaningful for them. The fact that they didn’t give in or surrender when there were 'cobblestones' in their way. They didn't seek easier, softer soil, and the universe indeed rewards that immeasurably. The flowers will be symmetrical and have height variation. It will be a living, breathing colourful pallet of wonder. 
It would’ve been more facile for me to move the flowers to the back garden, but in the long term, I would’ve regretted it. I would have had to transplant them from one bed to another for lack of sun, constantly worry about the chickens demolishing the new growth, and have to put up wire fencing to keep the ladies from eating petals.

How often folks do this same type of extra work because they wanted to skip steps, take an easier route, and not work arduously for their success. In the end, it’s so much better to play the long~end game, receive true accolades from within because you know you did all the work yourself. The reward: you’ll have a gorgeous garden of flowers.

There's going to be days, in fact, mostly that your garden will look like rubbage, you'll have no blooms and there's an enormous amount of weeds to pluck.

We need to stop looking at other folks gardens, comparing it to ours. It's an easy trap to look upon their blooming flowers, picturesque {social media worthy photographs} and then get down on ourselves because ours looks less appealing. 
Give yourself time, remember your voyage is your own. We aren't seeing all the time and effort they put into their garden. All of the years they've spent time weeding, cultivating, learning, researching, and digging. The times they didn't go out dancing with their friends but stayed home on weekends to work in the garden. You aren't seeing behind the picket fence, you're looking at what appears externally. 

Don't be so hard on yourself, and surely remember to keep your head down and work on your dreams. When you do this, you'll find you have no time to even notice another woman's garden/success, because you'll be too busy accomplishing yours. 

Before you know it, you will be the woman with the beautiful garden/success story.

I shall write again soon.

Most affably yours til my next swim, Raquelxxx

6 Ways To Navigate As You Transition Out Of Your Religious {Mormon} Faith

Tuesday, April 16, 2019
My dear friends,

I speak often on my blog about subjects that are partly vexing. My attempts are too fragrant them just enough to know that I am polite in my efforts, and in no way do I have the intentions to cause anyone affliction. 

With that being said, I should also like to share a quote that I have on my desk as a reminder of my well being.

"What other people think of me is none of my business."~Gary Oldman

A verifiable writer has an expansive desire to speak about their lives, share particulars that nearly ripped them to emotional shreds, or to simply write about a lovely stroll at the park. A writer must write as if their life depends on it. Between writing and breathing, in order to survive;  both are required {smile}. 

How The College Admission Scandal Contradicts The Law Of The {Seaweed} Harvest

Tuesday, April 9, 2019
My dear friends,

Today, I'd like to talk about the college admission scandal involving Lori Laughlin and Felicity Huffman. Let's dive in, shall we? I feel the real issue beneath the makeup sponsorships, the youtube channel of Olivia Jade {Lori's Daighter} and the dismal repercussions of this story have more to do with a lack of ownership and parental enabling than anything else.

Why We're Turning Our 1974 Home Into An English Victorian Cottage {To Then Sell And Become Homesteaders}

Monday, April 8, 2019

 My dear friends,

I received the news last Wednesday that we were out of the running for the curatorship of Flanders Mansion in Carmel By The Sea. I wasn't devastated or distraught, because I know that just means considerable specific desires that Jeffrey and I have are coming. I deeply trust the processes. I spent over 5 years diligently working with the city, historical research on the mansion, the Flanders family genealogy, and I feel very confident that all of that work was leading me to what will be.
My newest little cross-stitch I'll begin this evening by kerosene light.
My Beloved Gardener and I have a little routine that we do on weekends. After our home chores: we get baths, dress, jump into the truck, drive about looking at homes, land and property. We go to all sorts of little farmers markets, flea markets and charity shops. It's one of our favourite things to do as a couple.  He also knows that when I take my big camera there's going to be many stops for picture taking and picking of wildflowers. {I keep a little pair of clippers in my car, along with a little corked bottle of water, just for those spur of the moment times}.

So, upon learning that Flanders' was no longer in our future, we talked about where we might want to set down roots to create our 'forever home'.

Our plan is to find a substantial piece of property and become homesteading farmers. We have even talked about buying one of those stone cottage kits and build our own little cottage just the way we like it. We are going to get 5 sheep, more chickens {we'd like about 20}, roosters, more rabbits and a few dogs. That will be plenty for us as we will have all the farming to do, especially since we plan to have a large vegetable/ flower garden too. Jeffrey is most excited about the garden, and I can't wait either. I feel a little like Tasha Tudor. I can imagine she was just as happy the day she purchased her property to begin her dream home.
 I will have a stone wall such as this, along with the entire cottage being made of stone. Even the sheer thought of it makes me beyond giddy.
I think of Louisa May Alcott when she and her family finally moved into The Orchard House.  She, too, had always moved around and I can only imagine she was thrilled to bits to finally land at, "The Orchard House".

I am actually a bit relieved to finally know that I can now get on with life~so to speak. I had spent so many years living in a state of uncertainty with Flanders. That feeling begins to take a toll on someone after a period of time~ it did for me, anyway.

I do love the little home that we named Staffordshire Cottage, and it has so many delightful features and a surplus of potential. I had the idea of turning it into an authentic Victorian cottage a few months back as I was speaking with my dear friend. She is the friend of Tasha Tudor's children. We were chatting it up last week, and as usual, Tasha came up. She knows so much about Tasha and I gathered many more intentions from her. I got off of the telephone and thought to myself, " I shall do as Tasha Did." Tasha wasn't always where she desired to be. It wasn't until much later in life that she lived in her dream home that her son built by hand. Did you know for a little over a year Tasha and her children lived in their barn while the house was being built? She went many years living in another home, and while she was there, she sketched and dreamed about her one-day dream home that she envisioned.

The other day I was thinking about how often women, look at other women and compare their lives. We forget~ that artist/author that we admire so greatly has been on their personal journey for decades, and maybe our journey is just beginning. They, too, were where we are once upon a time. I am into my journey of only a few years. There are others somewhere out there, just beginning. Let us be mindful, we will get our greatest desires and dreams, but we must relish and live in the NOW. Each of us is unique and individual, and we mustn't focus on others and what they are doing. Regardless, of how similar in nature someone's life seems to appear, it is not. I think women do a grave disservice to themselves when they compare their lives to other women.
I acknowledge to you that I say this frequently, and the reason I do so is, that what better person to speak of such a thing, than a person that once upon a time struggled. It tore me up mentally, and it's truly no good for our sweet little spirits. Let us cut that out. {smile}

The long end path of Jeffrey and myself will be to spend much effort in transforming our little cottage into an English Victorian Cottage. Our tentative plan is to then sell it, make a decent profit and buy our piece of land. We are going to give ourselves a good year to work on the cottage, and in our spare time, continue seeking a beautiful piece of land. Do you dream of living in the country or are you a city gal?

Most affably yours til my next swim, Raquelxxx

How I Used The Law Of Attraction To Land A Job With Celebrity Jon Gruden, Giving Me Credibility As A Blogger

Thursday, April 4, 2019
 My dear friends,

I made some chai tea for our little visit today.

This post is something that I have wanted to share for a while now, because oftentimes, folks only HEAR of the Law of Attraction working, but never quite understand the actuality of HOW it works. I will attempt to disembowel it a wee bit.

Why Taking The Advice Of Another Woman Will Shoot You In The Foot Every Time

Monday, April 1, 2019
My dear friends, 

I had such a flood of inspiration for blog posts come upon me last evening that I just couldn't wait to share. I have some black tea all ready for us and our little visit.

Before I commence, let me say to you, Rabbit Rabbit! The sweet little painting above is of the dear Tasha Tudor. I wanted to paint her next to the ocean. To those close to her, she was known to say on many occasions that when she died, she would reincarnate back to the 1830s, as a captain's wife.

As an ode to Tasha, I thought it only fair to paint her by the water's edge.
Have you ever heard of the British saying, "Shoot you in the foot?" I happen to adore that saying, I think it's because I am a sucker for anything British, are you?

How And Why I Feed My Chicken Ladies Their Own Eggshells

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

My dear friends,

How are you on this lovely fine day? It's tea time my sweet friends. I made us some banana bread to accompany our tea today. You're going to love it. I tried a new recipe this time, It's one with brown sugar.

As many of you know I had wanted hens all of my life, and I can happily say, I love having chicken ladies. They are a year and a half now. My mother grew up on a chicken farm, as that was her gentries livelihood. I am learning every day that despite all the things I'm sure my mother knows about farming and chickens, I am constantly researching for myself. I try and emulate the olden ways of homesteading. The Victorian era is my end all to beat all. (smile)

How Not Being Able To Dress Like Laura Ingalls Wilder {Old~Fashioned} Became One More Reason I Got A Divorce

Friday, March 22, 2019
Little gloves for the foxes and fey.
Image courtesy archives of painter  Samuel McLoy {1831~1904} 

My dear friends,

Happy spring to you! The cottage is all warm, I have some tea on my serving tray, the chickens are roaming the garden and the smell of confederate jasmine permeates the air.

I have been reluctant to speak in depth on many occasions about my divorce. I have gotten better throughout the past three years as my emotions have become more focused, subsided, and I have softened.

3 Particulars I No Longer Do On The Internet {And Why My Life Is Better For It}

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

My dear friends, 

Make yourself some tea, because today I am going to be spilling some and we're both going to need it. {wink, wink} Just teasing. It'll be painless, I promise. {smile}

" If I can stop one heart from breaking, I shall not live in vain."~ Emily Dickinson