We’re starting to pull things together for our 2nd annual Shining Biz and Life conference… book in the date!
Four five important things to share:
1. I will NOT be doing any other live events or speaking gigs or meet-and-greets outside of this annual conference going forward. This is your ONLY chance to see me! I’m limiting live events to just this conference for a number of reasons including healing burnout.
2. We will be LIVE STREAMING the conference... so even if you aren’t flying in, book out your weekend anyway and watch from home!
The conference live stream is available exclusively to Academy members… and it will be FREE to them (because, as always, I like to wildly spoil them)
But if you can come, you defo should… the live element is just INCREDIBLE!
3. Tickets are ONLY for Academy members, and as usual, they are a huuuuuge discount for them — only $200 for the 2 day conference.
It is NOT a profit-making event for us, the $200 covers catering and venue. There are no upsells, there is no hard sells, there is no soft sells… it’s all just pure content + connection!!!!
Despite the low-end price… it is a high-end, top-quality event… we got solid 9 + 10 star reviews from all our participants last year, with many of them saying it was absolutely world-class and the best conference they’d ever attended, including internationally! HOORAY!
(We had people fly in from Scotland + the US last time! Amazing!)
4. Conference video and audio recordings and slides and worksheets will be available afterwards – but ONLY for Academy members. And of course – it will be FREE with their membership.
5. It will be two gloriously full days of business-building workshops intermingled with yoga and meditation. Plus you’ll be meeting some truly incredible souls… I know many peeps from last year’s event met their BFF’s! It was truly an uplevelling event… people left feeling so inspired and ready to take on the world with their goals and businesses.
I’m so excited already!
Book it in your calendars, dearests… and I’ll see you there!
And if you’re not an Academy member yet… holy dooley girl, what on earth are you waiting for? It’s all there, inside, waiting there for you!!!! (Including the full recordings from our conference this year!!!!!)
Well… your reaction to my new Academy video (aka most ridiculous video ever made!) was really lovely and excitable… and ya’ll asked lots of questions… so I thought I’d make good on my promise to talk about how to create a video like that.
Might be helpful for you if you’re planning on doing your own.
Also might just be interesting as a behind the scenes!
Warning: this is a bit of a long one! I’ve tried to include as many details + systems + screenshots as I can to make it as useful for you as possible!
First Up: Find The Right Videographer
So… I might be a hippy, but I’m an anal one.
I like to make my decision using a spreadsheet.
So, I have spreadsheets pre-set up for different local providers (i.e. videographers, photographers, designers)… when I find someone I like the work of, I pop them in my spreadsheet.
I’ve used this spreadsheet so many times now for different things!
When it comes to a new project, I set up columns for the different parameters of the project and questions I need to ask:
Are they available in the time I need?
How fast is their turnaround time?
Do they have an aesthetic/visual style that aligns with what I’m wanting to create?
Are they within budget?
Do they come recommended by a business associate or company you’re already connected with?
Do they specialise in the kind of video you want to create?
Are they switched on, professional, lovely to work with (you can tell a lot from phone calls!)
For the Academy sales video, we had a super tight deadline.
We’d just raced out of one project (the workbook pre-order sale) and had three weeks to pull off a videoshoot and publish it, along with all the other marketing materials, sales page & set up we needed to make happen.
Mel, my Project Manager, did the ring around based off my spreadsheet and started to populate answers. As you can tell – their availability was the first question we asked and most weren’t.
You can also tell a lot from a phone call about whether they are going to be the right fit.
There was one dude who was grumpy and rude on the phone, and asked if I was going to be a pain to work with. We really wanted to make sure we found a company that was happy and lovely to work with. It would be a total mood-killer and a wreck of a day if I had to spend it with grumpy fucktards! When I left the public service + created my company, I decided that I really didn’t want to work with anyone anymore who were less than lovely and joyful and helpful… because I didn’t have to! I’ve got my own Unicorn Utopia here… why would I put up with an Eeyore moping about?
They could fit us in with our tight deadline, had tonnes of experience, had a visual style I liked, and were just lovely to work with.
Should you just use a photographer instead of a videographer?
This is definitely up to you.
I’ve used a photographer in the past to capture videos.
For example, we had the amazing Tracy Lee do the photographs for our 2016 workbooks, and we managed to pull off a video shoot for it as well all in the same day. We then edited it together ourselves, and I was really happy with the video for it!
This time I wanted to see what it was like to do it with a full video crew.
I wanted to get more shots done, more audio quality, and just see what the difference was.
Here’s the pro video crew one so you can do comparisons.
It’s a step up in quality… there’s a LOT of preparation time put into it (as you’ll soon find out), and a big team to pull it off. A big step up in cost, but I was at the right stage of business to be doing that.
I will definitely be doing more pro videos with with Screencraft in the future!
Next stage: Tell ’em what you want
Depending on the agency, you’ll need to fill out some kind of briefing to give them as much information as possible.
You might also do this step at the videographer selection stage in order to get quotes for the work you want to have happen, and compare prices.
You’ll need to decide if:
You want them to edit it afterwards (this adds significantly to cost, but unless you are video-edit savvy already, is probably worth it!)
How long the final piece will be
How much editing you want to have happen – if it’s only going to be a straight to camera piece, if it will have some other shots interwoven, if you want animation to happen in the video, if it is going to be fast-moving with lots of different shots.
I thought it might be helpful to actually show you the brief I made!
Ready for your FREE copy of my video brief?!!!
Once we’d shared the script and details with Screencraft, we started brainstorming with them on how the video would look for different parts of it.
The script was divided into sections and put into a spreadsheet.
Then for each section, we brainstormed the video shots, animations and illustrations we would need for each part.
This is part of the spreadsheet below:
The last column is the script, the other columns are the video shots and assets we needed to edit it together.
We decided to do the shot at two different places:
Mel’s house(because my house has children and children are fucking nuts. Adorable, but insane.) If you are doing speaking parts in the video, you will probably need to do them in a controlled sound location (i.e. inside in a private space).
Weston Park. I chose Weston Park because in a really short distance (150 metres) there’s three distinct backdrops – a lake, a cafe and a forest. It’s also very quiet (especially on weekdays).
At the same time as I wrote the script, I created a spreadsheet of props that I would need so that I didn’t have to think of them later. I assigned who would be responsible for them. The day before the shoot, I printed it out and marked them off one by one as I put them in our van. It’s at this point, I was pretty bloody glad I drive a mum-van… those shagging wagons can fit SO MUCH shit in them!
Helpful hint: I took two suitcases, and tried to divide up stuff into the two different locations they would need to be used in.
Helpful hint #2: I assigned Mel to buy snacks + drinks for the day. I gave her a list and sent her to the health food store. So needed throughout the day!
Last-minute location change
The day before the shoot, I had a long time with our producer from Screencraft and realised we needed to do a location change. Inside shoots need a lot of house length to create depth within the set. And I knew we were going to get totally crammed at Mel’s place.
So I decided to hire an apartment that had the kind of dimensions we needed.
I called around a couple of places.
I should note – some apartments I’d hired in the past for staying in, or using for day-long business meetings – were NOT happy with being hired for videoshoots. Even when I promised them that it was NOT for porn purposes! Ha!
I eventually found a great waterfront apartment through Nagee Apartments, and made sure I double-checked they were fine with videoshoots.
Of course, last minute location shoots are NOT the best choice…
the night before was an almighty clusterfuck as we rearranged all our suppliers again to make sure they had the right address.
So… think about location in advance! Heed my mistakes!
Which reminds me… need to book in for our next videoshoot!
See??? LEARN FROM MY MISTAKES… LEST YOUR STAFF TEASE YOU MERCILESSLY!
Now, I’ve been staunchly anti-hair for a long time.
Until last year when I totally forgot about my hair and ended up with SUPER messy wild hair at last year’s photoshoot.
I’d spent a LOT of time and cash on that shoot… and when I saw the shots I was like “Yeah super funnnnn! But… oh dear… not a great hair day!” And decided if I was going to invest cash in again, I would get someone in to do my hair for me so I didn’t have to worry about it myself. Or have to do the sweaty standing in the bathroom, blind without my glasses, blindly putting on mascara so I didn’t look like a white apparition with camera lights on. Let someone else take care of it!
Because of my brilliant last-minute location change, we lost the makeup and hair team we had organised in advance, so we had a last minute scramble at 8pm at night trying to find someone for 8am the next morning!
Luckily, Mel has an amazing network of lovely people she’s fostered connections with over the years, and called in an old staff member who had since become a hair and make-up artist!
Sandy was awesome – highly recommend her. And she’s already booked in for our next one!
How The Day Went Down
I packaged everything from the props list into the van the day before.
We were scheduled to start shooting at 9am, so I was out the door by 7am, found the apartment, and found Mel, Sandy our makeup/hair artist and Alyssa our set designer waiting out front.
We hauled all our stuff up to the apartment, and Alyssa immediately set to work rearranging furniture and setting up backdrops for the videoshoot.
Sandy got started on hair and makeup. When she asked me what I wanted to look like, I said “Like me… but TV Leonie!” Hahaha!
I think she succeeded.
Clothes & Jewellery:
I brought about 12 changes of clothes all up, and while I originally thought it would be overkill, it ended up being SUPER helpful. Whenever we changed scene, I would change clothes… it just helped make everything look fresh and create visual difference in the video.
I have a huge collection of costume jewellery that I bought specifically for video and photo shoots and speaking gigs – I like things that are super bold and vibrant. They tend to not fade into the distance as much as smaller pieces. Plus, ya know, nothing about me is subtle! Ha! #onbrand
A lot of costume changes were done on the fly outside. I wore black leggings and a black crop top under everything so it was super easy for me to get changed in public and give no fucks.
I had in mind what I wanted our different sets to look like through the day, and realised the day before the shoot (just call me Last Minute Leonie) that I wouldn’t actually be able to do it all.
Instead I had a mad scramble through my contacts list, and called Lisa Lamaitre (creator of Canberra Wise Women and Canberra Wellness Hub – two places I spoke at this year) to see if she knew anyone.
As always, she did, because she’s brilliant like that!
At ridiculously late notice, we had the amazing Alyssa Johnson who did the set design for Sammy J’s Playground Politics show!!! She was fantastic and was able to create scenes like this, while I was too busy running around the park half-naked getting into my next outfit for the next shot.
Once the film crew had arrived and set-up we did about 3 hours of shooting direct-to-camera with voice.
This means I was looking at the camera as I spoke, and they were recording my voice that would end up being used for the whole video, including over the top of everything else we shot that day.
Me, sound dude + set designer! Awww yissss!
To achieve this, we used a teleprompter. It was my first time using one and it was really fucking cool!
On top of the producer, sound guy and camera guy, there was a teleprompter guy who controlled the speed as I spoke.
Food, Water + Breaks
Mel was my Project Manager/Personal Assistant for the shoot (as well as for the rest of my life! Ha!)
I gave her really clear instructions on the Care + Feeding of Leonie before the day.
I know from experience that when I’m in the moment, I forget to look after myself. I get really excitable and want to do and achieve everything. I want to talk to everybody and help everybody and be all things to all people.
I told her I needed her to manage me by:
getting me to take breathers whenever I could – I function better and longer when I fill my well with little moments of quiet. Between takes when they were resetting things up, she’d usher me into the bedroom and close the door and tell me to take five minutes to lay down. It was SO helpful.
telling me to use the bathroom. I forget!
force-feeding me as much water and food as she could. I usually don’t forget these things, but when I’m in performer mode, forgettttttt about it!
Getting her to do this ended up being brilliant. I didn’t crash and burn by the end of the day, so I count that as a WIN!
On location shoot
After the direct-to-camera shoot in the apartment, we grabbed lunch, then headed to Weston Park for the location shoot.
Here we recorded take after take of me climbing trees, drinking hot chocolate in a cafe, pretending to do Skype calls, setting up a painting camp and walking through the forest.
I sent out a last minute call on FB to my local mates to ask if anyone was free to be in the video, and luckily a bunch of them were!
Baby J stole the day with his bear outfit and chubby baby cheeeeeeeks for daaaaaaays.
In return, I gave them my ever lasting love… and promise of dinner… which reeeeeminds me… NEED TO ORGANISE THAT NOW! Thanks blog post, you’ve reminded me of so much!
We did the final shots for the video just as the sun was setting…
Here’s the crew as we wearily headed out to the carpark…
Eight hours of shooting and weeks of planning to create these eight minutes:
A huge effort… but well worth it I think!
I so hope this post has been useful to you.
I know when I first started creating pro videos I was COMPLETELY bloody overwhelmed at everything I had to do… hopefully the resources + insights I shared here will help you create yours!
P.S. In the ancient wisdom of Confucius:
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Due to popular request, I’m going to give you a run down on how I grew + evolved my little creative biz into the wildly successful company that it is today. Knowing the stories of others really, really helped me to get clear on what I wanted in biz, and still fascinates and inspires me today. I heart biz bios!
When I was growing up, I knew in my heart of hearts what I was destined to be. When someone would ask me at age four what I wanted to be when I grew up, I recited: Artist, poet, writer.
By the time I was a teenager, I still wanted to be all those things… but I also wanted to be someone who changed the world. It just seemed like the most obvious, true and right thing.
There wasn’t much career guidance available for someone who wanted to change the world though. And even with my definable dream jobs, I heard the same old story that most people do – that artists starved, that being a writer was hard, that it was all just a little bit impossible. I decided I wasn’t going to listen. I decided that I would find a way. That it might take some time – but that I could do it.
When I finished school, I worked in numerous office jobs – as a finance assistant, a receptionist, a database entry clerk, a personal assistant and a public servant.
As I worked, I studied at university as well. I studied fifteen subjects at three different universities, each one getting closer and closer to my dreams. I had so many passions – I was just trying to find one that really, really sung to me. I studied psychology, journalism, anthropology, sociology, philosophy, Australian Aboriginal studies + even economic history after I had a brief fantasy of becoming the Prime Minister of Australia.
I kept exploring, knowing I would find the How of making it happen. My path would present itself to me – all I needed to do was keep following the trail of my passions.
I landed a job working as an editor of www.business.gov.au – the Australian Government’s website for people starting and growing their businesses. It was so much fun that I ended up working there for seven years.
Left: A painting I made for myself when I was 22.
Right: One of my first commissioned artworks.
At night + on weekends, I made art, I took photographs. I shared them online – first on my favourite message board (Planet SARK), then on my own blog (which I started using Blogger).
People contacted me to buy my art, and to commission pieces from me. I was happier than a piggy in mud.
I quit studying at university as it was eating into my non-working hours + my potential art-making hours.
I started believing I could do even more. I self published a book using Lulu.com. I designed t-shirts + journals using Cafepress.com.
I blogged my little heart out – and have been doing it ever since 2004!
I tried out selling at art markets. For me, I didn’t find them as successful or fun as selling online, so I kept selling through my website and through Etsy.com. I signed with a licensing agent. I held my first solo art exhibition at 23.
I decided I wanted to start doing spiritual work as well. For a few years I had been a part of a women’s circle. The leader of the circle moved away and I really wanted and needed to have a circle in my life, so I decided the only thing to do was for me to start running one myself.
So that’s what I did. I started out doing them for free. It was an incredible growing time. I learned so many lessons along the way. I found that I needed to start running circles as paid courses so that I could continue running them. I needed to make them sustainable for me + my energy levels. I also found that women were more committed to going to circles if they had paid for them. This was one of my first lessons in sacred commerce!
When I was 24, I felt the calling to create a three-day women’s retreat – even though I’d never even attended one myself. So that’s what I did.
I just trusted that I would know how to teach and hold the space. It was hard work, and I was incredibly grateful for just how magically it turned out. Immense, powerful things happened along the way.
Then I followed my next passion + started photographing women as goddesses, weddings + pregnacious goddesses.
And all at the same time, I drew, journalled, kept growing in love with my love, travelled in India for a month, went to Uluru on a spiritual retreat, had adventures + a ridunkulous amount of fun.
I followed wherever my creative + spiritual heart led me. I chanted at the top of mountains at midnight while a storm blew around. I sung in teepees. I walked labyrinths in moonlight. I painted with my whole body. It was a time that was
totally wonderful + nourishing in my life. And FUN – oh my goddess – the FUN! And I kept working at my public service job and had fun there too.
After a while, I started working part-time in my office job so I could spend more time creating. I want to say something about my dear office job: I have never believed in the philosophy of breaking out of cubicle jail. Instead, I found a place to work that would give me an income while I played with my passions until I had a totally sustainable business.
As I explored my passions and dreams, I realised I wanted to do more than just have a gorgeous creative hobby that made me a little bit of money. I was making a little bit of money doing the things I loved – but nowhere near enough to do it full time. I remember going for a walk through the streets and fields in our city suburb one day, I decided to make a goal. I decided I was going to make $30 000 in the next year.
I went home, took out a piece of paper, and worked out how much I would have to sell in order to make $30 000 a year. As I played with the numbers, I just couldn’t make them add up.
I was frustrated – I wondered how on earth other people were able to manage it. It dawned on me that I had no idea about business.
I realised I’d been spending so much energy developing my creative and spiritual gifts, and no time at all developing my business ones. My creative and spiritual muscles were well developed and pretty buff-looking, but I didn’t have any business muscles and knowledge to support them. I decided that I needed to spend energy developing my business muscles. I needed to build a business vehicle – or a vessel – that was big enough to contain all my dreams, and strong enough to support me. So that’s what I did.
I began pouring over business and marketing books, studying, using business coaches and training. In the space of 18 months I went from earning around $3000 a year from my passions to being on track to earning $50 000 a year. A year later, I doubled again to do over six figures.
In 2012, it grew to close to half a million dollars a year.
In 2014, it grew to a seven-figure business. (A one million dollar business!!)
In 2015, we hit the $2 million mark.
I’ve continued to grow my business at a rate of doubling or tripling in revenue each year.
I’ve learned what I needed to know at each stage of the journey.
And I’ve done it all while not working full time hours. I still only spend about 20 hours per week working on my business. It used to be less, like 2-3 hours a day, but now that my sweet girls are a lil older, they don’t need me as much and I get to spend more time in my own biz world.
I didn’t think any of this was possible. Just a few years ago, I didn’t think $30,000 a year was possible. And then I made it. Then I didn’t think $60 000 a year was possible. And then I made it.
Then I thought:
What would it possibly be like to earn $100 000 a year? What would I change in order to make that?
And then I did it.
And then I did it again, and again and again, until I’m where I am now.
I now run a multi-million dollar company that has generated over $5m in revenue.
I have 75 000 people on my mailing list + a social media reach of 250 000.
I have financial security for my family for the future.
I still only work part-time.
It’s still my dream job and my favourite thing to do. I get to help more people, all the time, all over the world.
My huge secret to success is in implementing what I learned. As I learned, I made sure I acted on the lessons I was reading. They didn’t just sit in notebooks and texts on my shelf. I highlighted, committed to action, implemented.
My aim was – and still is – to build a world-class company based on excellence, integrity and spirit, integrating the spiritual and practical so that it could embody my highest intentions.
And each level of growth required personal growth too.
If I didn’t work through the lessons and blocks that came up at each stage of growth, I’d remain at that level until I did.
Therapy, coaching, intuitive healing, kinesiology… these are a big part of my success puzzle. I couldn’t have done what I have in biz without the support of these amazing healers who have held me through the necessary growth I had to experience to bring my company vision to birth in the world.
The utterly beautiful thing about my business is that it evolved and grew more real and true as I evolved, educated myself and grew my business muscles. I use a model – which has remained the same for YEARS now – that allows me to help as many women (and now men!) around the world as possible, while earning me abundant passive income that supports the life I love with my family and delivers incredible value to my customers.
But the story of my biz model starts WAY before this point.
Long, long ago…. In 2009 I had the idea for the workbooks fall into my (pregnant) lap. I wanted to create a New Year planner for myself that was fun and interesting and that went deeper than the average year/goal planner. I created the workbook mainly to delight myself, and when I decided to release it into the world, I thought it might end up helping ten other women at most.
I thought I’d be happy with that – to have helped ten women to have a better, more successful year. That would have been amazing!
I was so wrong. It was amazing, and it GREW. Women LOVED the workbook. They bought it for themselves. They
bought it for friends. It changed lives. It took on a life of its own and expanded more than I could ever have imagined – and as it grew, it went through several different stages, each one furthering the reach and honing the efficacy of the workbook.
I first sold the workbook as an ebook for women to download and print for themselves. Then, in 2013, we started doing a print on demand service with Amazon Create Space. And we embarked on the self-publishing journey in 2014. Of course, the workbooks continued to be available as a digital download, always. We made the decision to self-publish for a number of reasons, but mainly because it gave us more control over every aspect of production. Printing, pricing, quality, profit. We wanted as much value for both us and our customers as possible, and we’ve honed our production process down and will continue to do so into the future.
The workbooks got completely overhauled for 2016, and we added the diary and the To Do List pad as well, to make it an integrated, strategic goal setting system for biz and life goals. We now have a team who work on the workbooks to create the best possible products each year.
Workbook sales have doubled each year, if not more. To date, more than a quarter of a million women (and men, too!)
have used the workbooks to create their own inspired, shining life.
It’s been a wild ride, learning how to be a responsible steward for this baby of mine that I totally didn’t expect to launch into the world in this way, way back when the idea first glimmered in my soul. I’m so glad it happened this way though. And I’m so grateful for where it’s taken me.
114 biz, life, marketing, relationship, creativity, health & declutter courses
Masterminds of thousands of women across the world
Annual conference held in Canberra in February
Shining Discount Centre (giving you $2000 of discounts for essential biz-building services and software)
Bonus 2017 Goals Workbook collection delivered to your door (valued at $150)
Monthly group coaching calls (the only way you can get coaching from me!)
Weekly Ask Me Anything sessions from me and my range of social media, tech and business experts.
I’m SO proud of what we’ve created in the Academy… it’s unlike anything else on the market like it. It’s wildly generous and you get absolutely EVERYTHING you need to create a life and business that you adore wholeheartedly.
Up until now we’ve had it open for enrolments permanently, but I’ve decided to only open the doors once or twice a year for enrolments now. I want to be able to concentrate my time on all our members and making sure they get the best experience possible!
I felt deeply that I needed to have aligned branding – and realigned branding – whenever I went through personal transformations and revolutions in my growth.
At one point, I had a dalliance with selling high-end, one-to-one coaching for $1000 per hour, and also ran high-end business coaching retreats in my own home. I met amazing women and had huge amounts of fun, gigglesnorts and learning. But Chris and I found the retreats a huge energy drain, and the return on investment was not enough for us to keep them going. It just wasn’t a good business model for us to pursue.
Now I concentrate all my coaching time on my Academy members – through weekly “Ask Me Anything” chat sessions, monthly group coaching calls, monthly new courses and our annual conference!
I know that some biz owners thrive on the coaching and retreat-holding model, and I am super-excited for them! It’s so much fun when you discover the model that suits you and works for you!
And the most wonderful thing is that when you discover what works for you, you get to keep on doing that thing, and developing it further so that it grows and supports YOU.
One beautiful, breathtaking thing that has been SUCH a blessing on my business goddess journey is how it has supported me to do good in the world.
Philanthropy is built into my biz model, with a portion of money that comes in going to causes and organisations around the world that resonate with me.
My staff get to choose where their portion of the donation goes, too.
I love that we’re in the top 1% of Kiva lenders.
I love that me and some of my favourite business friends teamed up to pool our cash and build a six-room school in Ghana, West Africa.
I love that we built a library in Vietnam through Room to Read.
I love that we’ve donated hundreds of thousands of copies of digital licence and physical workbooks to around 2500 charities around the world.
I love going back to my old high schools to speak, and giving the girls workbooks so that they can learn how to set goals and live happy lives, believe in themselves and achieve their dreams. It is so hugely important to learn this as early as possible!
It is sacred work. Earning abundance means that you get to change the world.
You get to decide your own higher purpose and create the business to support it and the world you want to live in.
And that’s why I won’t be changing my business model anytime soon.
As my company continues to grow, I know the same lessons apply.
What would it be like to double revenues again? What would I need to change in order to make that? How many more people could I help?
I know that whatever my goal is, all I need to do is plan for it, learn new things and keep on growing.
That’s all I’ve ever needed to do, and that’s what has brought me here, right from the very beginning.
I so hope this has been helpful for you. I so hope you know your dreams are doable!
Here’s another scrapbook instalment, hooray! It’s a been a fortnight of picnics, crafts, love and the lurgy!
Just having a relaxing picnic nap in the backyard. Just kidding, I have kids.
Spring has sprung, yay! But it’s still fucking cold.
We had our 5 Ways To Get Back On Track webinar and I publicly promised to review and share my goals to embody public accountability and encourage all my readers to be “out” of the cupboard with their goals too!
So I went through my workbooks and typed up all my goals, and crossed out any I’ve already completed. There’s lots done, and lots more to do.
I wanted to share as well – I’m not particularly having a Big Goal year. I’ve done a lot over the past eight years… and had some years where I’ve gone ballz-to-the-wall with goals. After so much moving and growing, this year, I’m much more about sweet domesticity and settling. So my goals reflect that. There ain’t no wrong way to do goals! They are really just the structure to help build a life and business you adore… however that looks for you and your family!
The synchronicity has already started now I’m reviewing my 2016 workbooks… I found my special necklace from VianneFere that has my Word of the Year behind the mermaid! It had disappeared thanks to those pixies that live in my home (aka children)… But it reappeared in my ensuite!!! Hooray!!! I swear those dang workbooks have magic in them! I can say that coz I might have created them but they are not mine, I was just the vessel, and I’m as much a user and fan of them as anyone else!!!
I celebrated my sweet friend/Academy member/tie dye tailor The Sunny Daisy Tie Dye‘s birfday the only way you should celebrate birfdays; by wearing tie dye! Just kidding, I was wearing it anyway because I’m a 24/7 hippy. HAPPY BIRFDAY GIRRRRRRRRL.
Whose child is that? Definitely mine.
Good morning, morning!
“When you start each day with a grateful heart, light illuminates from within.”
I was struck down with another throat infection… I’ve been back-to-back sick for 3 months now. I feel like I’ve got the lowest immunity in the world so I’m heading off on a glorious health retreat in October.
I was sick again, so it was a three-book weekend.
Can not recommend these two books more highly.
Wearing this brilliant/ridiculous shirt to cheer myself up after being up half the night coughing.
The Dawsons caught up with this gorgeous ray of light!!
Jill was the first person to commission an artwork from me… maybe 12 years ago? We’d met on the SARK message board, as so many of us did.
8 years ago, she was visiting Canberra for work and we met for lunch and were instant kindness. We ate cheesecake and she asked me if she could tell me a secret… she was newly pregnant and hadn’t told people yet. It was one of those miracle dates.
Five years ago, she messaged me. She was flying in to Townsville and wanted to come visit me in Proserpine. She did, and we spent a magical 24 hours together. She once again had a secret to tell me… she was newly pregnant again. I told her my secret… that I was profoundly suffering in the midst of PND. We stayed at the farmhouse is grown up in, and walked the fields, and took goddess photographs by the lake.
Nearly two years ago, we moved to Tasmania for a while, and got to live near each other at last. She’d come around for lunch and eat Indian. We went on a road trip to Launceston. And we did that thing we always seem to do… tell each other secrets. She messaged me again a few weeks ago. She was coming back to Canberra for work. Back to the place it had all began. We eat Indian (as we always do). I, like the dealer I am, started her new addictions of historical romance and planning by giving her my surplus goodies. And as always, we told each other our secrets. Our secrets are safe with each other.
Since the moment we met, it was always this: Sister, come as you are. Tell me your truth, and I will love you anyway. Thank you Jill for our adventures all over this country… and for loving me just as I am.
We baked. We ate. I was well enough to bake with my darling offspring!!! Awwwww yisssssss LIVING THE DREAM.
Take that, dastardly low immunity & recurrent colds! Made little gluten free banana, honey & cinnamon muffins in the Thermomix that were super om nom nom. (For recipe, google “banana muffins Thermomix) – I just used the first recipe there. Because I’m faaaaaaaaaaaaancy like that.
Anyways, the kids loved helping, even if Beth needed new clothes and a solid wipe down after “helping” with pouring mixture.
“Do you know why baking is important Mum? Because it is FAMILY TIME and we get to be together and have FUN and that is the BEST.”
A good reminder when I’m feeling all uptight and anxious trying to rein in the baking mess and mayhem that Beffy creates.
Our dining room table is splattered with paint. It has a permanent coat of mess strewn about it.
We spent some magic time here this week… all immersed in our own creative projects… Beth on watercolours, Starry inventing “decoralating” (glueing wooden beads together) and me on art journals.
I’ve got writing and lists and sketches and Polaroids spread out in a half dozen places from our recent beach holiday… sweet husband is scanning it all in for me, and I’m turning it into a mixed media zine… here! This what it is!
Picnic blanket naps and reads in the backyard.
The kids keep trolloping dirt and leaves all over the blanket to bring me flowers. #worthit
I volunteered to do some toy fixing for Starry’s kindy room. I’ve had these wooden toys for months, waiting for some TLC.
Finally have been well enough to get to them!
They were all broken, so I wood glued them back together. Then hand-sanded them with the kids to smooth them and revive them.
Funnily enough, I discovered the big plate had some engravings on it – it was made near Lake Barrine in FNQ near where we used to live!
Wooden toys all reglued, sanded, and polished with olive oil. Hard to capture it, but they are glossy and sumptuous and gorgeous and ripe for playing with again.
Made some magical wool fairies today… one for Beth’s room, two to gift to Starry’s school for decorating the kinder room.
If you’d like to know how to make these, there’s a video workshop on them in my Academy! They are surprisingly easy & fast!
Magical, exhausting, wild, magnificent Elvin priestess/toddler. Your/our kryptonite is shops currently. You vacillate between running & grabbing everything in sight like a thieving whirlwind, and getting so fed up you lay flat on the ground on your belly. I’m pretty sure you are good for the budget because I can’t browse – ever – even when there’s two of us to try and tame you. Thank god for internet shopping for groceries, books, food delivery.
It’s the only way we’re surviving.
Our aim is to get you through childhood safe, despite your efforts, and gently guide you how to be that big self of yours while respecting other people’s boundaries and sovereignty too… coz you’ve got them covered for yourself!!!
You are such a strong force of nature, so fully committed to being you, you utterly amaze me and inspire me.
Thanks for being your full incarnation, Bethany.
It’s not easy being your mama, but it’s not easy being anyone’s, and I’m just glad you came through me so I could learn from that brilliant fire and power you are.