Musings of sorts

The Seasons of Creativity

July 10, 2017

I went through a phase a few months ago where I had literally zero creative ideas in my head. Nothing. I thought my writing days were over. I went through a (short) phase when I even thought I would delete this blog. Then I thought what’s the point in that? At the very least, it can remain on the internet for someone one to find something useful, whether it be a childfree resource, some travel tips, or a cat story to make someone laugh. And at the very, very least, I joked with The Ginger Hunk that he will be able to read it to me like the notebook, when we are old and grey and I have lost all my marbles.

Primarily, I decided to keep it going and write this blog when I feel like it for me, because it makes me feel full, happy and inspired. I feel a bit naked without it. Then if other people get something from it, and learn a little then that is great too. (Actually, that’s more than great.) After a season of non creativity, I’m enjoying (or getting stressed by) a season with too many ideas and too little time.

I’m pitching stories, developing a new business and keeping this blog going. I’m tired fitting it in with the day job, but I’m happy.

I digress from the point of this post. This thought about seasons of creativity came into my head when my Mum announced to me the other day that she was “over” knitting. She told me she is going to focus on cross stitch and swiftly throw out all her wool because knitting takes her too long. We had a chat and talked about seasons of interests. Sometimes you might want to knit. And sometimes you might want to cross stitch. Sometimes I might blog, other times write articles, pursue new projects, or sit on my arse and do nothing (because there is a season of non-creativity and nesting too, lets face it). Last week I even had a very random thought about learning how to crochet. Crochet isn’t my thing at all and I have never been into it. But as nanny could do it, and mum could do it, the buck stops with me unless my niece picks it up. And I do fantasize about sitting in front of the television and MAKING something useful that someone could use. (Better than scrolling on the phone.)

So the seasons of my creative life so far have taken me from poetry, to short stories, to ceramics, to drawing, blogging, picture book drafting, profile writing, to travel writing and perhaps next to the knitting needle. Maybe one day, I’ll even write a book.

It’s all about following your curious and enjoying the seasons.

Where will the next season take you?

Much Love,  Ashleigh XXX

Linking with Kylie for #IBOT

Bali, Travel & Wanderlust

The Best Places To Eat In Amed

July 10, 2017

Amed, situated on the north east coast of Bali is a quiet little fishing village three hours of Denpasar. In my month here I found some treasures, and must eats here for your next trip (for half the price of southern Bali.) Here are some of the best places to eat in Amed. Hit me up if I have missed any!

Warung Enak 

Warung Enak is a favourite with travellers coming to Amed and it’s easy to see why. Situated on the main street, they serve a great selection of salad, pizza, fish of the day and home made ice cream. They have recently extended their seating area but it still gets super busy, especially in diving season so get there early. Be prepared for things to take a while if you are in a large group. Notable mentions: Tuna and corn pizza and the tofu and egg salad. Jl. Raya Pengosekan Ubud, Ubud, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali, Indonesia

Warung Osin 

This is a small, unassuming and very clean warung close to the centre of Amed opposite the ATM and Barung dive centre. It is easy to walk straight past but if you do you will miss some of the best Indonesian food in Amed. Here you can get great nasi campur (a little taste of everything), satay chicken and fish, as well as fish of the day. The above meal of satay tuna will set you back about $6 AUD. Continue Reading…

Daily Life

Am I lucky, or do I choose?

July 7, 2017

I’ve been flat-out with a sore throat the last few days, and The Ginger Hunk has a cough. I feel that we are reinfecting each other without it leaving the house. Anyway I need to get my brain and my creative juices going because I have not been thinking much for the past few days and I’ve chosen a word tonight to write about to linkup with #fridayreflections finally, and the word is LUCKY. This is what Lucky means.

  1. having or marked by good luckfortunate: “That was my lucky day”
  2. happening fortunately lucky accident.
  3. bringing or foretelling good luckor supposed to do so: a lucky penny.

Now lucky is a word that’s bandied around a lot. In my opinion it it is often used to replace other words. (Like hard work, choice and sacrifice.) Here’ some lucky references that I always get:

  • “You’re lucky you get to travel so much”
  • “You’re lucky you’re in a good relationship”
  • “You’re lucky you live near the beach”
  • “You’re lucky you work four days a week”

I’ve even bandied it around myself and I even did it this week over on Instagram. Because I actually feel guilty that I am going overseas for the second time this year. Guilty for an overseas trip. Yes that’s right. Because there is that feeling that others are not so “lucky”.

On reflection, lucky isn’t a word that I would use to describe those other things on that list of mine, including the second overseas trip this year.  They come from the choices that I’ve made. I get to travel because I SAVE money for travel. I prioritise travel over other things in life. Fancy dinners out, home renovations, living in a bigger place and having children don’t have a spot over travel in my heart. Who is to say that that won’t change? It might one day. But for now, travel makes my heart sing in a way that those other things don’t. I’ve work in Government for eight years and got to the point where I’m pretty skilled in my line of work. I’ve accumulated long service leave and work for bosses that are willing to give me flexibility as they can see it makes me a better worker.

So yes. I do get to travel. But I choose travel in my life over other things. This does not make me lucky.

The same goes with the four days a week thing. I do not work four days a week because I am rich and have a hidden influx of money. I’m not lucky. I looked at my finances. I looked at our life. I looked at the value of my time over money, helping The Ginger Hunk recover and being around to help him grow his photography business. Having a day to not think about mental health is also good for my mental health.  This is a financial cut, but a personal gain. So it isn’t luck. It’s a give and take.

What is luck?

I’m lucky if I won the lottery.

I’m lucky if a ladybird lands on me.

I’m lucky to be  in good health and be born in Australia.

But the rest of it?

I choose.

Love Ashleigh XXX

Do you believe in luck?

Love to hear your comments.

Continue Reading…

Health & Wellbeing

The Magic of Not Giving A F#*k

July 1, 2017

Swear. Word. Alert.

I was watching this talk the other day on Tedx.  The talk is by Sarah Knight about The Magic of Not Giving A Fuck. (I now need to read the book.) Knight defines your fucks as “time, energy and money”. We only have so much to give, and so she says to make a “fuck budget”. Anything she says that is not a “hell yeah” we should not be putting our mind, time or energy into as eventually, depletion of this time will leave us ending up feeling anxious and desperate.

I did this exercise and my fuck budget after looking at my money, time and energy is limited. I go to work. I travel an hour each way. I have two blogs to keep going and one to really get going, (and I really give a fuck about that!) I give a fuck about spending time with my husband and my family. I give a fuck about fitting in my walks and my barre classes so I don’t lose my shit. That doesn’t leave much time throughout the week to give my fucks anywhere else. In fact, I probably only have one precious fuck left to see a friend or do something outside of the sphere. (And this is when I am not doing Cantoo!)  Continue Reading…

Cat Lady, Travel & Wanderlust

New Project – Hotels With Cats

June 27, 2017

I’ve been busy away from My Meow working on a new project, Hotels With Cats. It’s been keeping me awake day and night with ideas and energy. I’m in the flow. Which hasn’t happened in a while. So I am going with it while my curious takes me there. The idea came to me the last day of my holidays in Bali, after the excitement of staying in two hotels with resident cats before we left. I get so excited when I stay in a hotel with a resident cat.

“What if cat people could find cats wherever they go?” I thought. So I am building a travel directory for cat people. A collection of Hotels With Cats, Cat Cafes and Sanctuaries. Think Villa Kitty in Bali or Lanai Cat Sanctuary in Hawaii. I want to tell the tales of quirky cats, as well as highlight fantastic destinations and hotels. You’ll be able to search by continent or by theme. Longer term, I am thinking postcards, a beautiful photography book and all the rest. This will be my passions for cats and travel giving birth!  Continue Reading…

42 Days of Summer, Travel & Wanderlust

Moving Forward And Being Grateful That It Happened

June 23, 2017

How do you explain to someone who isn’t a freediver that you’ve spent the last six weeks in Bali trying to hold your breath under water? Those in the know would know that freediving is more than that. That deep under the water, if you’re not feeling great, anxious, tired, it just wont work. Your body will say no. Or your mind will. You spend a lot of the time looking at yourself. Why did I feel uncomfortable on that dive? Why did I turn? Why wasn’t I relaxed and felt that the bottom was soo far away. I spent the last six weeks looking in and not out.  Continue Reading…