New Zealand is known globally for our efforts in conservation. We’re nowhere near done, but we’ve made considerable progress to protect our native species and bring them back from the brink of extinction over the past 50 years. As New Zealanders, we can be proud of our commitment to preserving our natural and historic heritage,…
Saint Andrews Day Celebration
“Now, if you had me in your mouth as I have you, tell me what you would do?” Said the Cat to the Pukeko. In this New Zealand re-telling of old Scottish tale.
I will be retelling traditional Scottish stories such as ‘Whippety-Stourie and ‘The Fairies of Merlin’s Crag’. Also my own original Woven Stories amongst them ‘Fern the Dragon’ and ‘Nana’s blanket bear’. The Saint Andrews Day celebrations in the Dunedin Octagon is a perfect chance to celebrate your Scottish ancestors and the new lives they forged for themselves in this, their ‘New Edinburgh’ come and join me in celebrating the weaving of old and new stories.
Amongst my stories there will be Selkies, Dragons, Brownies, a wayward fairy or two and they will be accompanied by Sheep dogs and enchanted Swans, Kiwis and a Tuatara … long story short, Something for everyone.
“The event is held from 10.am until 2.pm in the Octagon with a wonderful array of Scottish activities, music and dancing and family fun.
“I am so excited and thrilled that I may just burst!”
Last year my horse mad 6 yr old Granddaughter asked me to do a painting of a unicorn for her 7th birthday present. I was a little nervous about a unicorn as my subject matter but what developed through the painting was a thought of what I would want her to know if I wasn’t around to tell her.
What would I say was important in life if I had to say it simply and clearly.
Life I believe is made of many highs and lows and you can never truly stop there being both in your life. To try to keep all bad things from happening, is like trying to hold back the tide.
No I would rather try to remember, that even when there are hard times, they can be survived and there will be good times again. Don’t get me wrong I am no Pollyanna I have seen or helped people through some dark times, but if you look for a dream,a hope that there will be better times you tend to find them. The first thing I would want to tell her is to chase her dreams, not in a corny go out kid and chase your dreams but in a clear know who you are and what you want in all parts of your life. So when things get tough you will have a path to follow to see the glimmer of hope. That can make all the difference when you are in the low points, knowing there is hope, when it is hard to see. That if you hold on to the dream of having a happy life you can create the reality and be happy chasing that dream. Why do I think this is a dream and not a goal? because goals have a deadline a finish date, achieve this goal by this date… etc, but our dreams tend to be things that are organic and change and move with us. One of my most important and cherished dreams is to have a happy fulfilled life and that is something I chase and achieve everyday.
It is not a goal that I will wait till the end to measure, nor is it a goal that has defined parameters, some times I am happy when I don’t get what I want. Because I got something or someone else and I am experienced enough to know I can respect the day as it is.
I wrote the key words of what I wanted for her to know in gold paint in the drips I deliberately let run off the paper. Because I think that is an important key to happiness. Finding the meaningful people and things in the mess or accidental moments. Then building your life on that foundation.
What do you think is important in life?
This painting and message was for her but if in some small way it is of use to you please take it and chase your dreams. xx Allie
The words I wrote were these:
BE CREATIVE, in your own way.
Spend time with FRIENDS and those who love you, for they will strengthen you.
Always LOVE YOURSELF, not in a conceited way, but from your own truth and honesty.
Be quick to share LOVE everyone needs it, and it will not run out.
Free your IMAGINATION, it will not survive in constraints, not yours or others.
RESPECT all and everything will be your teacher and guide.
LEARN from every mistake and from every situation and you will always see a gift you can take from it.
DREAM BIG, then put one foot after the other on your journey to get there.
THERE IS ONLY ONE YOU, don’t compare yourself to others, it waste your time and kill your courage.
FOLLOW YOUR DREAMS, especially when its hard, don’t give up. Ask for help, it will come.
MAGIC HAPPENS everyday, look for it and you will see it.
When others can’t see it for themselves give HOPE for when given, hope grows.
Above all remember everyday:
YOU ARE SPECIAL, and needed in this world.
YOU ARE LOVED,by many, let it start with yourself.
YOU ARE ALWAYS IN MY HEART,as I am in yours.
SO WE ARE NEVER ALONE.
The last year has been full of new events, odd things and opportunities that would take to much time to explain on today’s blog, but lets start with a story…
Once upon a time this dyslexic creative decided
she needed to get her act together…
I have spent the last 12 plus months paying attention to my goals and using different techniques to keep my personal and family objectives on track. I have been lost in the story of career and daily living in the past and as we all know, time just gets away on you. But over the last year it has been different, I have achieved many goals I set out to do.
Original and historical scary stories at a historical village for Halloween
This has been a catalysis in my life which has created many changes.
I have always aspired to write and illustrate my own children’s stories, which with dyslexia, no formal illustration training and a full-time career teaching, I haven’t manged to achieve. In fact in the past I had begun to think it may be an unrealistic goal altogether.
This year I made the choice to re-energise my writing and story skills in other ways, to pursue my stories in whatever way I could, to not feel defeated by the difficulty to get published. I decided not to go down the normal path and I changed my inner script from,
I must get published, to I must share my stories.
I went back to basics and fell in-love with traditional oral storytelling.
Storytelling at the Auckland Highland Games.
Wow what a difference it has made for me and my stories. I started telling traditional and my own original stories to children of varied ages.
At events, libraries, and schools wherever I could, large and small crowds even quiet one on one tellings. They were all uniquely special and I learnt a great deal.
It reminded me what is important in a story and what is not and just how creative children’s and adults imaginations can be.
I have a passion for historical early settler stories and Celtic heritage stories, my love of Aesop fables creeps in every-time and I love the amazement on peoples faces when they sit down and I don’t have a book to tell from, then we can flit from story to story as fast as their minds can take them.
The stories come from my head and heart.
After all isn’t that where all stories start?
In either our head or our hearts
It has been a wonderful telling year and I look forward to telling many many many more…
Part of my teaching role is to teach career planning and goal setting.
Over the past year I have reformed some key points.
Points that I would forget (ignore) for myself,
but would encourage my students to always do.
So what is good for the student is good for the teacher.
If you are not achieving what you want on your life journey, PAUSE FOR A MOMENT, don’t just keep trudging on, you can never reverse time, so do not waste it on the wrong path or project. Take time to analyse and adjust on a regular basis.
look at the vehicle you are trying to use?
Is it the right tool for the job?
Could you do it a different way?
Look at your inner script, what are you saying to yourself, about YOURSELF and your SITUATION?
Is it true, or incorrect self-doubt?
If it is true, change it and you can’t change it, how can you approach your challenge to minimise the impact?
If it’s not true or true for you anymore, think outside the normal box?
What could you do to achieve it from a different point of view?
Listen to all the feedback the world offers, find the silver lining it will be there.
What are your goals and dreams, Could you look at them from a different angle?
Find your story xxx Allie
Day 16. I started working today on a picture of one of my favorite New Zealand legendary characters. William O’ Leary aka ‘Arawata Bill’ and his pack horse Dolly. It will take me longer than I have today to finish so here is the in-progress start to his face. I have added a reference picture of him and Dolly. Will post when finished, loving working on his picture. Imagine going bush for 40 years and in a three piece suit? Such a strong charater and determined to do it his way. He inspires me and is great to tell stories about. I wanted to take longer for his picture so I could do him justice. #otago #goldminers #dunedinnz #localhistory #storyteller #arawata #williamoleary #alliesimpsonwriterartist
Do something everyday of my 20 / 20 challenge to get clearer and closer to my vision of what I want.
Day 15. I completed my main character for my original story ‘how oysters got their pearls’. This sketch was a challenge but I got there in the end. Can you tell what mammal was my inspiration for my mermaid?
The challenge to get clear ideas and vision of my goals is working it has been difficult and confronting but worth the effort.
Hope you enjoy. xx Allie