At long last….

At long last….

How are you today?
I’ve been pedalling away, getting ready for TV at the weekend,
prepping the next New Design Club projects,
and now I’ve come to chat to you before Dave gets home with the Chish & Fips!
Wednesday is the day when we consider a mindful approach to life.
What can we do to stop dwelling in the past?
How can we stop our washing machine heads from being 
on a permanent spin cycle?
Is there a trick to not worrying?
I saw a Facebook post last week.
A woman shared that she was being stalked,
apparently by a guy called Bill.
It was really getting to her.
She said the worst part was that all his mates were starting to stalk her too.
Gas Bill. Electric Bill. Phone Bill….
hahaha! Made me laugh anyway.
One thing I know helps distract me
 is focussing on the present 
and actually being in the now. 
Most of us crafters have figured out that getting busy with the hands helps stay out of the head.
As another old friend once said to me.
The Head – not a place you want to visit alone…
With this in mind, we started designing a colouring book;
that was over a year ago!
I can’t believe how long it took
 to complete this Clarity Colouring book! 
It’s very lovely.
Top quality.
One-sided print.
Opens at the top. 
Is perforated along the top too.
So you can pull the individual pages out 
without demolishing the rest of the book!
Can take all pencils, water-colour, alcohol pens –
you name it. 
One thing which crossed my mind when the first pages started coming to life, was how large they actually are.
Now this may be fine for most folks,
but there will be those who may be a trifle overwhelmed 
by that large 10″ x 10″ expanse. 
So with those people in mind,
we developed a couple of smaller colouring in projects:
5 double-sided bookmarks with cool quotes.
We even included the bookmark sleeves, for ready-to-give gifts.
Then there are the 3 booklets of 
These are very cool.
They’re proper postcards, but work beautifully as card fronts, 
toppers as they’re called. 
And where can you buy these Clarity goodies?
Well, I’m launching them on HOCHANDA TV 
on Sunday evening at 8pm,
in a special offer bundle.
I thought we could take our time, sit down, relax.
I’ll show you a couple of colouring in tricks 
I’ve learned along the way.
Which brings me right back to Wednesday’s Mindful Blog. 
Getting busy with your hands,
be it 
Colouring in,
Groovi Parchment Art,
focussing on what you are doing precisely in the NOW
will almost always divert your thoughts away from worry and pain.
I’m not claiming that crafting is a cure all,
but I know it works for me and thousands of others.
When we were at Glastonbury,
to be honest there was a point one afternoon when I got very uncomfortable with all the mud, rain, drunk kids and drugs.
So I took myself off to a craft tent and got with my hands. 
The young lady guided me through the weaving steps,
and then I got right into it. 
One and a half hours later, 
lovely basket thingy
and most importantly, clear and settled head. 
It works. It really does. 
Don’t overthink whether it works or not.
Just trust that it will. 

Time for bed soon now though…..
I’m pooped!!!
Love & Peace,
Barb xxxx

89 thoughts on “At long last….

  1. I am really looking forward to getting my hands on those goodies, and the smaller things are an inspired idea. You are so right about keeping your hands busy. It works on so many levels, keeping the mind off stress, and helps with the diet too. You cannot eat while your hands and brain are so busy, and you end up with something lovely at the end. Win, win, win! Enjoy those fish and chips with your lovely Dave. xxx Maggie

  2. But Barbara… You've got fish and chips coming!!!! Or are you eating them in bed….being decadent!

    The colouring book and postcards are fabulous! People are going to love them!
    Love and hugs xxxx

  3. But Barbara… You've got fish and chips coming!!!! Or are you eating them in bed….being decadent!

    The colouring book and postcards are fabulous! People are going to love them!
    Love and hugs xxxx

  4. Wow Barbara you never fail to amaze me with your new products looking forward to the launch on hochanda then buy direct from clarity towers enjoy your fish & chips xxx

    1. Evening dear family of blog friends sending night time hugs to you all ,hugs to all on the blog .
      I would like to say a big thank you to clarity towers I received my clarity parcel today my wee animals and a few extra crafting bits so did a little stamping ready to put my cards together tomorrow hopefully if my day is good .xxx
      Brenda Hope your hair cut and grass cut went well today have been thinking of you today hugs for you and daisy xx
      Wee extra hug Dorothy xxx
      Hugs for Donna & pheobe xxx
      Pam how are you doing missing you xx
      Gilly hope the pain is less today xxx

    2. Hello Sheila how exciting getting a delivery. That came quick didn't it. Hope you have a good nights sleep so you are up to finishing your cards tomorrow . Sending hugs xxx

    3. Hi Sheila,
      Isn't it great when Clarity goodies arrive – I love it! Seems like you've had a good day ( hope you haven't done too much – that's the teacher in me coming out!) Hope you get your cards done tomorrow. Love and hugs Alison xx

  5. Hi Barbara, not been around for while but read your blog most days on my phone as they have WiFi in Costa, but couldn't comment. Been away in the caravan staying at Littlehampton. Got home to my Clarity order, fab. Loved the canvases you did. The new inkpads look super, brilliant colours too, but like others on here really can't justify buying any until my others have started drying out. Got most of the Distress inkpads plus reinkers and Adirondacks, also lots of Versafine and Brilliance etc inkpads that I collected before I found you, but great for anyone who hasn't got a collection yet. Be great having a look at different colour combinations on a Tuesday, I really struggle with that and tend to stick with the colours you use or my favourite colours, blues and lilacs. The colouring book looks amazing, brilliant that you have done smaller postcards and bookmarks to colour as well, looking forward to your shows on Hochanda advocating more techniques. Love Pam xx

  6. I expect the colouring book and extra projects are well worth waiting for. You are so right about keeping busy with some craft, helping a lot at the moment with a busy house and concerns about my son-in-law. I can just lose myself in some papercraft usually parchment. I hope those fish and chips were good not had that for a very long time. Sleep well. xx

  7. Hi Barbara, well you have done it again. A new order will follow for the colouring book and some book marks they look great. I know my friend would love them so will be buying them for her for Christmas za great gift. And not forgetting myself.
    You are all brilliant at Clarity Towers.
    Enjoy your evening.
    Lynn xx

  8. Fish and Chip supper, not too bad, just no time for cooking tonight ! I am really rather hoping that some folks might send us coloured in postcards…We could paste them on a wall for the Blog or Facebook ! What do you think ? You would just need to seal or fix them with some crafty product !! x

    1. Thanks Barbara. I'll have a wee investigation of it. Maybe the fresco glazes you sell would work? I've got the satin finish one but not experimented with it yet. I'm guessing it might crack on something that's a bit flexible though. Thank you for helping me understand xxxx

  9. Oh oh oh colouring goodies – I think these just might fall in my basket at the weekend – will they all be on your website Sunday too?? Fingers crossed. Xxx

  10. Hello Barbara. I love the idea of the Postcards for card toppers. Just perfect for me. Dave, great idea, you can certainly expect one from me. Hugs to you both. xx

  11. Hi to all my lovely blog friends, missed you all. Still been strugglung with my back some days but it is better than it was. I think the Tens machine has helped a bit along with a Duvalay sleeping bag in the van whilst away. Thank you for thinking of me Sheila. Glad you've managed some crafting. Take it easy though and get that happy medium. Hi Donna, so sorry poor Pheobe has had to have another operation, hope she is in the mend now, just as well it was school holidays so as she had you home with her. How's your puppy doing Morag, know exactly what you mean when you're an animal lover and you've not got one, a house not being a home. Hope one day I will have another dog before I'm to old. Love and hugs to you all, Diane, Brenda, hope your hair cut and lawn cutting didn't stress you out too much, Gilly, hope your back gets better soon, Allison, Jackie, Chris, Pen, sorry you have all this worry with your sister and your Mum. Hope I've not missed anyone out, love to all on the

  12. Hi Barbara, yep keeping busy with the hands sure does help for all sorts of physical, mental, and being stalked by Bill problems, whatever. It's getting motivated to start crafting while in the middle of whatever that I think is the hard bit. It's crafting that has got me through my lonely, unhappy, damaged, unfulfilled life. It's also got me through the immense endless issues my set of Asperger's problems cause me. Doesn't help all the time, at their worst nothing works at all, but I'm still always trying to find a way. I've never been able to just sit and do nothing, don't understand how people can!

    Yeah 10 x 10 would be way too overwhelming for me, too busy for my head, just causes it to freeze. So I'm very interested to check out the bookmarks and postcards. Maybe I don't need to be shut out of this Clarity colouring in after all. And what makes it even better for me is that the coloured in item can then be used as a card/gift, it's productive. I struggle greatly with doing something just because, that there's no end reason for it. Aye, still not got my head to see that doing something like colouring a page is therapeutic and that's a good enough end result! I look forward to your colouring in lessons too. Don't suppose that will include leaves (with close ups) by any chance? Please. I've got a total block on where to start in colouring the rose leaves (or any leaves) on our group garden heart colouring in, where to put the dark and light. Guess I'm holding everyone else back as a result, sorry guys.

    Hair is cut. The guy who comes for my garden visits says he really likes it. I think he meant it, because he kept saying it, and he was smiling, hopefully a good smile, not one of those not for a good reason smiles people do (he wouldn't do that though). I won't know myself until my head gets used to the change, which can take a while. It was so funny, I laughed so much. The guy shaves his head as he's losing his hair. After the hairdresser left he started to push all my cut hair together on the floor. I said to him it was ok I can get it up after, but no he says, he's making it into the shape of a pony tail. Then he lay down on my floor with my hair spread out from the top of his head – he wanted to see what it was like to have hair again!!! I got him to take a selfie, it's so funny!!! Aye, he's just as mad as me, probably even worse than me, probably why we get on so well! Had my garden visit after but no grass cut because it rained just before. But he's coming back on Monday, if it stays dry, to cut it then, so a bonus garden visit 🙂 I'm still agitated and stressed about it all, but I just have to live through this, it takes as long as it takes for that to settle, nothing I can do to speed that up, unfortunately.

    I don't know why I've been so freaking out about Brexit, and the subsequent Indyref2. Westminster gobbled up all the proceeds from our oil, and now stocks are running low. Then Westminster is taking us out of the European union, which will lead to us leaving the UK too. And with much less revenue from oil than was previously thought. But, we're going to be fine, our oil is running out so instead we're going to be proper mining for gold and silver! 😉 (I haven't made that up, honest!)

    Hope you enjoy your fish and chips. Send a few chips up here, lots of brown sauce, no salt or vinegar, please 😉 I've a chip shop literally at the bottom of my road, probably just as well I'm totally housebound and have no one eh!!!

    Hope you have a chance to chill after prepping, before you need to go to the studio

    love Brenda xx

    1. Hi Brenda,
      It seems as though today hasn't been as bad as you thought it would be – I am so pleased and I bet your hair looks brilliant. I'm off to the hairdressers tomorrow but unlike you, I like it – well the head massage anyway! Love and hugs to you and Daisy, Alison xx

    2. p.s. the guy happily went away with the bundle of 'just to brighten your day' ATCs I'd finished. We're doing it joint, I'm making them, and mostly he's handing them out, as obviously I'm very limited in people I could give one to. So I'm going to be kept busy with a production line of them in between my other crafting 🙂

    3. Hello Brenda, it sounds like your garden man is a star making you laugh after the trauma of the hair cut, I had a good laugh thinking about it. We used to put our long hair on our dads head so he could remember what it was like to have hair again! He is kind coming back to cut the grass when it's dry again. I hope it's quiet tonight, I was quite worried about you last night but know you were trying to be positive and stay safe. Sending hugs for you and Daisy. Xxxx

    4. Thanks Alison and Diane. Aye I was in a bit of a state last night, the idling engine being the final straw. I waited too long, my usual. I could hear it at the back as well, but it went off just after I said. I have big headphones with a long lead on them that I can plug into the telly or music tablet to help stop me hearing bad noises. But I tend to leave it too late as headphones make pressure in my middle ear which is painful. I managed to not hurt myself and the feelings did eventually start to subside. I don't often get bad noises here, it's usually footballs being bounced as the kids go to and from the park. So I'm using it as a reminder of how much better living here is to my last place. And I'll look out my headphones and keep them out for a while in case it's going to happen more. Sorry for worrying you xx

    5. Morning Brenda went to bed after posting the blog last night so playing catch up now brilliant news you mannaged your haircut bet you look right Bonny it's so good to hear how your man helps you and you can spend quality time with him laughing and sharing you deserve to have that in your life sending hugs for you and daisy xxx

    6. Thanks Sheila :-). Glad to see you're keeping up learning Scots for if we ever get to meet ;-). How are you today? Has your scan appointment come in yet? Hope you have a good crafty afternoon xx

  13. Hello my lovely blog friends. I'm sorry I've been so 'hitty missy' lately. But today it's the 'here and now' I'm having trouble with. About 6 weeks ago I found a lump in my remaining breast. But what with Liam losing his beloved dog and finding a litter of pups miles away in Sunderland, then having to wait 5 weeks to collect them. I've put off going to the Docs, and telling hubby!! As, being so short on family there was literally no-one who could have collected them, as I'm the only driver, at least the only driver who is able to drive on Motorways. But anyway, after being told that I could pick the pups up on Thursday, I finally phoned the docs on Friday morning. When I explained the problem, I was able to go that morning. The doc referred me to the hospital, and I got a phone call from them yesterday, giving me an appointment for tomorrow evening at 5.10pm.
    Now all these weeks I've been able to put it out of my mind (using clarity diversions mainly)even after going to the docs on Friday. But since the phone call yesterday I feel as if I'm gradually heading towards blind panic! So I hope you don't mind me sharing my woes with you all. I thought perhaps writing it down may put it back into some kind of perspective. I can't bring myself to go to bed yet, even though I'm tired, as last night wasn't very pleasant.
    I'm now going to go and have a look back on some of Barbara's Mindful Wednesdays. But I'll be back. Thank you all, just for being there. xxx

    1. Oh Morag, I'm so sorry. And you put off dealing with it for the rest of your family, what a selfless thing to do. I pray it's just a cyst or something else benign. No wonder you're in a panic about it. Please let it all out here as much as you want. say the same things over and over to us, if it helps you. we're all here for you, just like you've been here for us. I'll be sending psychic positive energy and thoughts your way tomorrow teatime. And saying a wee prayer for you. Love and big hugs xx

    2. Oh Morag,
      I am so sorry that you've felt that you had to keep this to yourself, how awful for you. I am hoping and praying that this is not as bad as you think. You have my number if ever you want someone to talk to or you want to sound off – I am a very good listener! I hope you weren't caught up in the awful events in the village today – I don't think of such things happening in Durham. Take care my friend and try to get a good night, love and very special hugs Alison xxx

    3. Morag sweetheart you know we don't mind , we are here for you to chat any time, that's the good thing about this blog. I will be thinking of you when you go for your appointment, at least things are moving quickly , frightening I know but all the better in the long run I'm sure. I hope the puppy is ok, your new companion will be by your side through this too, I think he came into your life for a reason! Sending you a big hug xxx

    4. Thank you Alison. I was actually coming out of my daughters who just lives a little way off the front street when I saw the crowd on the road. I thought someone had been run over so I went down to see if there was anything I could do. When I got there someone had already started CPR, but it was quite obvious that the poor kid had gone. I just stayed around in case the girl doing the CPR needed a break, But the Paramedics were there in a flash. It is so sad, and horrific at the same time. The police have been going round advising everyone to stay indoors and to make sure doors are locked, so quite scary too. The police have been walking around all afternoon with guns. How unthinkable would that have been, not so many years ago. xxx

    5. You take care and follow the police advice. Did you know the poor bloke? I used to teach a few lads from Kelloe, so hope it wasn't one of them Love Alison xxx

    6. Dear Morag what a dreadfully worrying time for you and you are so selfless keeping it to yourself until now. It is time for you to focus on YOU now and let others give you support. That includes your blog pals.
      I hope the police get the stabbing incident sorted soon, stay safe xx

    7. Thank you Chris. But being 'selfless' didn't really come into it. It just simply felt that there was no alternative. I'm certain you would all have done the same in my position. xxx

    8. Yes I am sure I would have done but not everyone would and I know a few that have not done so. I have been putting off going to see about a hip replacement for over a year as we have Dad to look after but a friend gave me a lecture and said if it got too bad I wouldn't be able to look after Dad anyway so I am waiting for an appointment.
      I hope you feel able to keep blogging and that we can offer a listening ear xx

    9. I've just found the stabbing incident on the internet, that's awful, poor guy. And must be so scary for you all, especially as they haven't caught the person/s responsible, as well as it being so close to home really makes you think. I found seeing the scary new armed police on the news did that, suddenly the atrocities, threat of them became much more closer to us all. This is the last thing you need going on just now Morag. Hope you all mange to get some sleep tonight. Take care xx

    10. Chris, 'pot and kettle' comes to mind. Your friend is right. It needs sorting! xx
      Brenda you are right about it being scary. I went out to the car before coming to bed to get my phone. I ground that I suddenly got so scared I was having palpitations. I came in a lot quicker than I went out!!xx

    11. Morning morag after posting on the blog last night I went to sleep I'm just catching up this morning my dear blog friend sending you virtual flowers 💐 Lots of hugs to help you through each day your such a caring person putting other first before yourself I hope all goes well on Friday will be in my thoughts each day lots of love Sheila xxx

  14. I am also looking forward to seeing the new colouring book and bookmarks and postcards Barbara. I think that keeping busy with a craft of one sort or another does absorb one totally and blogs out all problems for an hour or two. It must definitely drop the blood pressure by a notch or two. x

  15. Good evening Barbara and All
    What a brilliant blog post I do like the way you do your posts
    Ohh and the new goodies look amazing I am not very good at colouring so I will look forward to watching your hints and tips on the Hochanda show
    Have a lovely evening
    Theresa G xx

  16. I sometimes feel calmer just reading your blog Barbara especially on Wednesdays. I wish I could relax more stop being sad that the past has gone, being scared of the future as I have some big decisions to make and just make time to get lost in a crafty project. Talking colouring books, I was with mum today who was 86 today and we saw some colouring books at the garden centre and I was telling her they now do them for adults and it is very popular and also therapeutic and she commented how she used to love colouring with the children years ago, so I might just tune in and get mum started, think she might enjoy a colouring session after all these years x

  17. Hi Barb,
    I'm really looking forward to these colouring goodies. I especially like that you've done smaller things to do as well – great for doing on your knee or plane/ train. It's also great that you've done them all in good quality paper and the big one just one sided and perforated. It makes such a difference not having to worry about bleeding through the paper and ruining something underneath. My sister brought me a couple of books back from Switzerland and I was so impressed with them – sounds like yours will be very similar. Sorry if I'm waffling! Hope you enjoyed the fish and chips. Love and hugs Alison xx

    1. Hi bloggy friends( got it right today!)
      Been out for lunch with a friend today to a local garden centre. Saw a gorgeous wooden planter which I had to have and some lovely plants to go in it! Not sure where it's going yet, but it's lovely. Dave just said " I see we've got another pot!" Been really windy here today and my poor hanging baskets have taken a real battering unfortunately. Love and very special hugs to you all especially to those of you struggling at the moment, Alison xxxxx

    2. Evening Alison. I can't resist pots either. Some of mine are so big they need watering even if it's been raining as it doesn't penetrate them xx

  18. Hi Barbara
    What a great idea having a selection of colouring activities for us. I like the idea of the bookmarks and the postcards, we were looking for postcards the other day so think they might fall into the basket. Hope you enjoyed your fish and chip supper.
    Love Diane xxx

    1. Hello my lovely blog friends, I hope today has been a good day for you all. The sun came out again today which was lovely after the rain to start the week. I've got friends coming tomorrow for afternoon tea in the garden, might have to have it indoors instead!. ( don't worry ladies I will bring left overs to the campfire tomorrow night!). Sending hugs all round and special hugs for Donna and Phoebe and Dot xxx

  19. Barbara, you completely anticipated me – when I saw the colouring book at the retreat I thought exactly what you said – that it was quite intimidating. But the bookmarks and postcards are perfect – my mum is a complete bookworm and wants to get into colouring (and has the faber castells ready!) so that's her Christmas present sorted! I've never really done colouring (since I was a kid) so looking forward to the shows and some tips on how to approach it.

    Hope the fish and chips were good and you're tucked up in bed now – I'm off in a mo too!

  20. Ooh, the colouring book, bookmarks, poistcard sound just fantastic! Definitely a must have! Sadly, won't be in at the weekend so will miss your shows but thanks to Hochanda catch up I'll be able watch them on Monday 🙂 xx

  21. Ooh, the colouring book, bookmarks, poistcard sound just fantastic! Definitely a must have! Sadly, won't be in at the weekend so will miss your shows but thanks to Hochanda catch up I'll be able watch them on Monday 🙂 xx

  22. Hello Barb, loving all the items for colouring, and the smaller items will be good if you are daunted by a large image to do. Looking forward to the shows. Bx

  23. Morning Barbara, A lovely post today, I was chuckling at your words haha !! The colouring items look gorgeous, and I think that these will be great for 'taking your mind off things'. I am one who has a washing machine head, I go over and over and over things in my head, the mind is such a powerful thing, I really find it hard to empty my mind, I am going to try the colouring book remedy which hopefully will keep my mind 'absorbed', and if I like the finished picture, I will be able to frame it – r e s u l t – haha.
    I'm looking forward to watching you demo these beauties.
    Lots of love from Patricia xx

  24. Looking forward to these. The smaller cards will be great for people in hospital etc who need something to occupy them but not taking up too much space. Will also be good for travel! Know the designs will be fantastic.

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