G’day lovebeams,

We’re back in action with my regular scrapbook of sorts/walk down memory lane.

Between a US team retreat in Arizona, a management retreat held in Canberra, new staff starting, and a much needed beach holiday with my hunk of a husband and our gorgeous womb fruits, there’s been lots happening!

As if that wasn’t enough, we’ve just launched our big, wild, cwazy 7-day presale where you can save a whopping 60% off of the 2017 Shining Year Bundle and get FREE INTERNATIONAL SHIPPING!

Pre Sale 9 SF

The pre-order includes:

  • 2017 Biz goals workbook
  • 2017 Life goals workbook
  • 2017 goals diary/planner
  • To Do List pad (these were sold out last year super quickly!)
  • 2 x 2017 wall planners
  • FREE international shipping
  • First books from the printers (this ended up being dog’s bollocks this year – but rest assured, we have our distribution houses fixed up and ready to go so our pre-orders get their packages sent first).

To get more details + to order (remember, sale ends on 27th July and will not be run again this year!), join us over here!

Alrighty petals, here’s a look back at the past couple of weeks…

2 back to back interviews

I had four hours of back to back interviews and meetings. Was stressing that this wouldn’t be enough hydration to get me through. We mermaids love our water!!!!

3 craft box

Bought a metal craft box from Kmart to store and toke around essential crafting & planner accoutrements in. You know, for those times I’m as far away as the couch & in desperate need of washi tape. Happens alllllll the time.

4 creative archive

I’m going through my whole creative archive and cataloging it into chronological order. I can’t tell you how incredibly satisfying it is to see twenty years of my work/play/joy/heart all splayed out like this. #artist

5 bullet journaling

Trying out bullet journaling for the first time… Way fun!!! I can understand the addiction!!!!

6 new hobbies lately

I’ve been trying out new hobbies lately… In addition to bullet journaling, I have fallen down the rabbit hole of planners and trying out everything out there… Where I’ve ended up is using a Happiness Planner because you can add things into it using their hole punch system.

Which works for me – I end up pulling all the monthly checkins from my own planner adding it into there as well, along with art & cards & photos. I am kind of turning it into a scrapbookish daybook. I don’t put my to do lists in here for work — it’s way too big and I prefer that one to be electronic so my team can easily see what I’m working on. I do put some life tasks in here though, and also just write dot points of what happened that day like a logbook.

It’s also useful for me as an introvert to map out visually how much I have on. I know if I have a full week or month ahead, I have to either cancel or reschedule some stuff or build in extra quiet time. My bestie/COO, Sonya, was spending the week with us and I’ve been soooo excited for us to dive into our next creative obsession together. We always spend most of our time together crafting over tea anyway… That’s been our friendship for over a decade. Painting, journaling, beading, mini art books and more…

7 gifts of imperfection course

It’s taken me six months but I just finished Brene Brown’s Gifts of Imperfection ecourse. It was bloody brilliant. Highly recommend! BTW – have a free poster + colouring page for you here!

8 grace and frankie

Went through two seasons of “Grace and Frankie” on Netflix. Bloody brilliant. Incredible actors dealing with topics of ageing, death, sexuality, infidelity & coming out. I bloody loved seeing women in their 70s living full, succulent lives. Lily Tomlin’s character is my style guru. I’m totally going to be a Frankie in my 70s (probably with less drugs & fear of drones though). My hunky husband got quite addicted to it! #leoniewatches

9 second day of bullet journaling

Second day of bullet journaling and I’m falling in love. Will it be a forever love, or a love for a season? I don’t know and it doesn’t matter. Right now it is good and right now it is beautiful.

10 sonya with leonie

Best friend / right hand girl in biz, Sonya, was here. On our first night we were already tiring each other out from talking so much. Needed a solid nine hour sleep to prepare for more talking! Our new Project Manager started… She’s another long term mate who is one of the best, smartest & kindest people I know!!!! Building my dream team, y’all!!!!!! #teamunicornretreat #teamunicorn #teamLDI

11 mels first day

FIRST DAY SELFIE!!!!!!!! Welcome to the team, Mel!!!!! Mel is our new project manager at LDI. I’ve known and loved Mel since I was 20 years old… She was one of my first mentors at work, and she believed in me so much. She told me the public service wasn’t going to be the best place for my gifts, that I had more to share with the world than that, and that one day she would come and work for me.

It’s taken 13 years but her prophecy has come to fulfilment. Mel is one of the smartest, kindest people I know. She’s been on my dream team lost for a long time along with Sonya. 2016 was the year my dream team list came true. I’m so honoured these amazing souls believe in me and my vision enough to spend their days working towards it… Pouring their gifts and brilliance into it. Together we are building one awesome unicorn utopia for our team, customers & world!!!! Awwwwwwwww yissssssssssss!!!! What a great day!!!!!!!


13 sick on voting day

Sick on voting day… But I voted. This election I voted for Greens & Independents… I’m unimpressed with Labor… With Liberal my least favourite major party.

Having said that, here’s my handy hints this election… There is some misnomer parties that could be misleading: the “Sustainable Australia” party is NOT an environmentally conscious party… They are anti-immigration.

Rise Up Australia are similarly scary far right nationalists. Health Australia has some policies I don’t get behind personally… They totes might for you though so do a quick read to see if it resonates.

Before you vote for any party for that matter – make sure you know what their policies are and that they reflect your views. Some of them are pretty full on, and to be honest it makes me a bit sad at some of the racist and homophobic party values that seem particularly prevalent this election.

Anyhows… It’s a big day. And I want to send you love. Whatever you vote, I still love you.

P.S. Mr D and I never vote the same at each election which makes us laugh so much. We are both swinging voters who never happen to swing the same direction at the same time. Anyways, he said he hopes Billbo Shorty gets in because the way he eats a sausage sanga is comedy gold and he feels Billbo has more comedy gem moments in there that will keep him amused for the next 3 years. So that’s how he votes. I’ll still shag him though. Even with opposing political views we will shag it out. WORLD PEACE LOVE AND HARMONY YALL. ???????????? #democracysausage

14 large happy planner

Bought one of the large Happy Planners… Which I love the size of. But couldn’t work out how to have two planners going simultaneously. I’ve had a mild level of stress about what to do, to be honest. I’ve ended up combining my smaller completed planner pages with the larger one. I also had all the monthly checkin sheets from my own designed 2016 Shining Year diary – I pulled them out and hole punched them into the disc system. I think it’s working for me to put everything in one place… But who knows maybe I will turn multi?

Planner decisions are haaaaaaaard. And of course, everyone who is NOT a planner addict is reading this thinking: WTF.

14 weekend australian magazines

I had big plans this weekend. Plans that involve a backlog of Weekend Australian magazines, chai and peanut butter cups.

15 beth the elf

This wild free independent elfling sometimes comes to me, arms raised, asks to be held like a baby.

1 beff planner

Both of my girls have their own #leoniedawsonplanners — they do art journaling in there. Mermaid Daughter #2 is only two but she’ll be damned if she isn’t going to do what her big sister does. She asked for her photo to be taken to show her star shirt off. I am getting Mermaid Daughter #1 to practice writing in hers as well, and she is also doing science experiments that she documents in there. They both know mama wrote & illustrated their planners. I tell them all the time they can create anything they want, and that it doesn’t matter if anyone else likes their art, it only matters if they have fun making it and love it themselves. I want them to see art making as normal and without fear… Because that is what it is.

2 starry on typewriter

I decided to go Full Hipster last year & bought myself a ye olden day typewriter… It’s bloody great fun to add text for art journaling, and I’ll add words into my illustrated zines using it too. My latest typewriter creation was a short book of cranky poems typed out furiously about something truly shitty that I am healing from… CLACKITTYCLACKCLACKCLACK… I swear it was very good therapy!!! Anywaysies… My kids bloody love it too… Best of all, it’s basically indestructible… So totally fine for kid use (or cranky typing for therapy use).

3 planner addict kids

I’m turning my kids into serious #planneraddicts … This is them with my own designed #leoniedawsonplanners … Washi tale and stickers and Instax photos for dayyyyyyyyyyyys y’all.

4 tips for surviving school holidays

So, we don’t have a babysitter at the moment… Which can make the shuffle of parenting/running a business a bit more challenging.

What I have been doing during these school holidays is this:

  • I’ve reduced my work hours back down to 12 hours a week. I was up to 25 hours, but I’m moved it back down, and it feels like a good fit.
  • Chris looks after the kids while I’m working while he attempts to multi task and do audio engineering and video editing for me. Sometimes this is successful, sometimes not.
  • I try to take the girls out to run wild at the shops for him to get some Me Time as well.
  • Mornings are relegated for family adventures and connection time. Sometimes I have a call or interview to do in the morning. I book it in 7am-8am so we can still head off for an adventure with plenty of morning time.
  • I don’t cook. Not on holidays. Not ever. Not anymore. It’s not something I love… It stresses me out & I yell at the kids. Instead, we order fresh meals delivered through Youfoodz. My kids share one of their meals usually along with a platter of fruit & veges.
  • We have plenty of lazy days where we don’t get out of pyjamas. I’m fine with my kids getting a bit bored. I just encourage them to keep playing/exploring to find something else. Boredom is a good thing and essential for the development of imagination I reckon.
  • I stocked up on activity boxes beforehand – I have an art box subscription with and we just bought a science experiments activity box from Questacon as well. I’ve learned from past experience to ration the activities… Otherwise they will be torn through in a day.
  • I took a holiday from work too. We went to the beach for a week without laptops. School holidays is a bloody great excuse to observe your own work sabbath!!!
5 haircut

Standing beneath the crescent moon
Giving thanks
Scissors in hand
Thank you for all that has been
I let go I prune back I let go
Making space
For new growth to appear.

6 lara bingle

With this new haircut, I basically look EXACTLY like Lara Bingle. I BET YOU CAN’T TELL WHICH ONE IS ME AND WHICH ONE IS HER. GO ON. GUESS. YOU CAN’T.

7 kids at the toy store

In a moment of stupidity, we took the kids to the toy store & told them they could choose a toy each.

Mermaid Daughter #2 was easy – she found this dog in a red hot second and was SOLD. Our six year old on the other hand………….. Thirty minutes later was still totally overwhelmed by the immensity & gravity of the decision we had to make. By which time I was sitting on the store floor, resting up against a bank of peeing dolls, attempting to get a moment’s shut eye, instead of having to live through another moment of this doom. (Chris was there being an actual parent, so at least we had that going for us.)

Anywaysies, my lil moment of shut eye gave me a brainwave, and I ended up leading Starry to one toy in two colours (My Little Ponies which she loves and has a collection of she plays with constantly). Limiting her choice down to that helped immensely and we were out the door within five minutes, exchanging parental looks over the heads of our kids that said “neverrrrrrrrr agaaaaaain.” Anyways, I can talk about this now because it’s been a week, and I’ve journaled about it enough to feel emotionally resolved to share about our traumatic toy store experience.

In happy news… That dog toy? That the wild elf found within a split second? It’s proven to be a real hit. It’s found under Mermaid Daughter #2’s arm every moment of the day and night. I think it helps that it looks like our doggy Angel… Mermaid Daughter #2 calls it “Angel Doggy Toy” which is s sensible name, even if it is rather long winded. It’s quite logical, I see how she got there, you know?  I don’t know if I’ve seen Mermaid Daughter #1 new toy anywhere near as much. But that’s not important. What’s important is WE SURVIVED THE TOY STORE GUYS. NEVER AGAIN. (Until we forget and make the same stooooopid mistake again.)

Love, A Real Mum.

8 rainy seaside holiday

Rainy seaside holiday = many cuddles by fire. Also: naps.

9 much needed holiday

Much needed holiday.

10 beach mode

Beach mode. (My team are still busy elves in Santa’s workshop, while Santa works on her tan. And by “works on her tan” I mean “requires a whole body vacuum to extract sand particles from every orifice. Not because of a bikini situation – indeed, it is Winter here – but Santa’s elvin two year old has been blessed by a bounty of mischief and enjoys throwing both sand and fucks given to the wind in all directions. The End.)

11 leonie and girls on vacation

Well, that’s it for now pandas. I am back + as fresh as can be from my beach holiday and our 7 day pre-sale has just started!

Check it out here!

Awkwardly long cuddles,

Canberra Wise Women fo June 2016 I Leonie Dawson



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