What Are You Doing Today?

What Are You Doing Today? “What are you doing today?” That is what the chiropractor asked me when I went in for an adjustment this morning. I heard myself say, “I’m working.” It sounded flat, true and not accurate at the same time. As he adjusted my spine, Dr. Rueben said, “Hmmm, is what I do work? It doesn’t seem like it. It’s more like fulfilling my purpose. And it gives provision for more purpose in other areas of my life.” I responded, “I like that. Sometimes I feel that, as an artist, people don’t think I work and I justify… Read More

Be brave…I am here…Outside your comfort zone

Be brave…I am here…outside your comfort zone “Be brave and don’t be afraid. I am here.” – Jesus   Matthew 14:27 The Passion Translation That is not the typical I AM statement of Jesus I think of. But Jesus said it a number of times to his followers, “I am with you, even to the end of the age, I am here…” Jesus, his Spirit, Holy Spirit, Comforter, with me… always. I am receiving this in a deep way today. Stepping out in faith, working on a new project that looks big, harder than I can attempt on my own,… Read More

1.Word-of-Year-Accordion-theme-Valerie-Sjodin

Word of the Year Art Journal Reflecting Life

Word of the Year Art Journal Reflecting Life If you’ve been reading my blog recently you may remember my quote of the year: “Plan to be surprised.” from the movie Dan in Real Life. Life hardly ever looks like I think it will. I like plans that follow through, events and deadlines nicely spaced out on my calendar, having something to look forward to, etc. In other words, I like to feel like my life is manageable and I have a reasonable measure of control. Nearly mid-year, I am trying to embrace the uncontrolled nature of my word of the year… Read More

Heart Flow Coloring and Art Journaling Page

Heart Flow Coloring and Art Journaling Page   After I finished the Flow pages shown in the last post, I moved on with the “Flow” theme found in John 7:37-39, using a coloring page I had made for the second coloring book: Colorful Blessings – Celebrating Everyday Wonders. I also added the definitions of “flow” on the left and my response on the right of the image used. Here are the steps I used to complete the page: 1. The coloring page image was too big for my journal so I reduced it and printed it out with a laser… Read More

Using Coloring Pages in My Art Journal

In the first Colorful Blessings coloring book, many of the drawings were drawn from my art journals. Now with the second book, Colorful Blessings – Celebrating Everyday Wonders, finished and being published by Taunton Press (released in June), I am beginning to use the coloring pages in my art journals. I thought you might like to see some of my process. I began by choosing images that resonated with the journal I’m working on: My Word of the Year Journal, and my word FLOW. The journal is made out of watercolor paper. Here I chose “Nurture Tranquility” from the first… Read More

The Healing Story Behind the Art: Forgiveness and Letting Go

We each have a story to tell, and our stories relate to one another. We all need forgiveness and to forgive. In the Colorful Blessings coloring book, the pages give a glimpse into my story expressed through line. They are waiting to be colored, to connect with your story. “Forgive, Accept, Let Go” was a spontaneous journal page. At that time, I was heart-broken. I didn’t know how to get over the hurt from someone I loved. After many tears, I needed to forgive and move on. It was so hard. The process of forgiveness seemed a road so hard to travel.… Read More

Bible Journaling my Animal of the Year

In my everyday journal, I had written a list of Scripture references that were relevant to my word and animal of this year. When I looked up Psalm 18:26-36, the passage stood out to me as the Psalm for this year. Not only does it have the metaphor of the deer, it also has the metaphor of the bow which connected with my symbols and word for 2015, aim. There is so much in the passage, it was hard to condense what was important to me at this time. I will be revisiting it throughout the year.      … Read More

How I Explore my Word of the Year

How I Explore my Word of the Year I had someone send me a message this week saying she didn’t have a word for the year. The process left her feeling blank, sad. In writing posts like many written at this time of year, I want to say that having a specific word is not the most important thing. I believe with all my heart that God wants a relationship with each one of us and desires to speak, listen, and help us be all we are meant to be. It may or may not be in the form of… Read More

My Word and Shape for 2016 flowing out of 2015

My Word & Shape Flowing out of 2015 Do you have a word or theme that is recurring, it keeps coming up? A word that won’t go away? One that seems highlighted? Sometimes it comes like that, over time… I’ve noticed that my word/theme of the year often starts as a seed in September rather than January, and then begins to take root in November. Maybe it is because the school year starts in September and I taught school for ten years and had children that started their new school year every fall. Whatever the reason, now that it is… Read More

SURPRISE: An Animal of the Year? Yes

SURPRISE: An Animal of the Year? Yes Already my quote of the year has been active: “Plan to be surprised.” from the movie Dan in Real Life. This week I am surprised I am sharing with you about my animal of the year instead of my word of the year. I will share the word next week – at least that is my plan 🙂 Why an animal? Sometimes I miss the obvious, and have just realized that after many unusual encounters with animals over the years, there may be seasons where God speaks to me through a particular animal… Read More