Welcome Spring: Ode (and owed) to Fairies

The Fairy Queen
(anonymous)
Come, follow, follow me,
You, fairy elves that be;
Which circle on the greene,
Come follow Mab, your queene,
Hand in hand let’s dance around,
For this place is fairy ground.

(Download a free 1-page printable  Fairy Poems PDF )

Happy May Day Beautiful Creative Monkeys!

The English celebrate the first day of May through many beautiful traditions like dancing around a may pole with ribbons and flowers, and watching Morris dancers in colorful outfits bang sticks together as they dance.

I am from England and when I was a wee one, I remember celebrating May Day in a parade with my dear Dad, who was wearing a funny Morris dancing outfit. I made tissue paper flowers with my beautiful Mum to decorate our parade float. Thus began my passion for tissue flowers, and may have been the seed that led me to use these flowers in Monkey Chi Monkey Do table decorations and our packaging.

May Day is a special day to celebrate the flowers of Spring and the forthcoming fruits of Summer. It makes me think of my sweet Granny, my beloved maternal grandmother who parted our earth on this day; whenever I think of her I think of Fairies.

You see, when I was about 6 years old, Granny told me all about the fairies who lived in her garden. I remember walking with her through seemingly endless rows of flowers, as she showed me exactly where they lived and how they helped us. I have only ever seen one fairy in all my life, and that radiant sprite has kept me on a quest to find another one ever since!

I told my daughters all about fairies and of course we have numerous books detailing fairy likes/dislikes, and what they do exactly and how they help all things in nature, principally caring for the flowers and small wild animals. Fairy Magic orchestrates so many things in our beautiful world, and as an Ode to Fairies and the beautiful magic they do on our behalf, we share this Togetherness Project: a Magic Fairy Garden.

(For those just joining us, togetherness projects are projects that you do completely connected with someone you love, and disconnected from phones/handheld devices and basically anything that could pull your mind, body and spirit away from the person you are with. Click here for a more thorough description.)

Supplies needed for a fairy garden. (Not pictured: your imagination.)

Supplies
♥ flower pot (we used a long planter so we could put lots of goodies inside for fairy joy)
♥ potting soil
♥ your choice of flower seeds (we used forget-me-knots, sweet Williams & sweet peas)
♥ a few flowers already in bloom like pansies, phlox and marigolds
♥ assorted rocks, crystals, shells, pebbles, beads, and bits of wood–anything that you think will attract the fairies, as fairies simply cannot resist sparkly pretty things!
♥ Chia seeds, like from chia pets. These little seeds are nutritious to eat like flax seed–and can be found in most natural food stores– but they also sprout and grow quickly, creating beautiful radiant grass, perfect for fairy circles. If you can’t find Chia, you can use regular grass seeds, or skip altogether, but it’s good to use especially if you or your partner are eager fairy gardeners.
♥ Optional: paint and brush to decorate bits of wood, doll house furniture, silk flowers, marbles, whatever your fairies desire.

Fill your flower pot with soil. Plant 1 or 2 flowers, sprinkle some flower seeds and cover lightly with soil. The girls wanted to mark where the flower seeds were and used some rocks and little wood fences we found at a craft store. Emma included a teeny clay doll house chair and table, and a little doggie for the fairies to play with. Abbey filled a large seashell with water, and dropped a crystal quartz stone into the pool so fairies could have  a little pool.

After we set up the fairy gardens, we determined where best to put the fairy grass (Chia seeds). This was messy and mucky and fun (and I’m still finding chia seeds in my hair and dried on my legs, hahahah!. I filled a glass jar with about a cup of chia seeds and then added some water to make a mucky paste.

Let's hope these seeds grow!

Watch it … the seeds expand and get very slimey.  The girls loved it and took the seedy mix and spread it over the areas free from other flower seeds.

One word: MAGIC!!!!

In one hour we had such fun making our Fairy gardens. I read a few poems about fairies ( here’s a free printable I made just for you Fairy Poems PDF), to get us in the mood and to attract any other fairies in our general vacinity. (Fairies have exceptional hearing!)

Abbey told me a fairy has already visited her garden tonight, as the little seat she made out of cardboard was wet- a fairy had danced in her seashell water pool and then sat down to take a rest.

Wishing you many magical creative togetherness moments!

Becky and the Monks (and the fairies too)
 

P.S. For readers who may not (gasp) believe … I can’t even finish that sentence! Well, let me rephrase: For those who may need more evidence of Fairies: Have you ever noticed picture frames or wall hangings in your home are straight one day and then somehow crooked the next? How do you think that happens? Well, I absolutely know! Your house is blessed by Fairies! There you have it. Need I say more?!

P.P.S. I’ll post pictures when the flowers and grass are in bloom, and of course if we see any fairies!

P.P.S. Are you a Monkey Musings subscriber? If not, please sign up at the top right-hand side of the page and click “I LOVE Monkeys”. EeEeEe!

Mirror Mirror on the Wall, Don’t I look Mahvahlous!?

Roses are Red, Violets are Blue, I ♥ You, You are just you!

 

Hiya Creative Monkeys!

I LOVE mirrors. I remember when I was a kid I used to play with two mirrors together: Did you ever create that cool effect where you can see yourself looking at yourself, looking at yourself looking at yourself … a reflection within a reflection within a reflection to infinity? (E-mail me if not, and I’ll tell you how it’s done, so cool!) It’s fascinating to consider how EVERYONE in our society looks in the mirror at least once a day.  Mirrors are kindof like altars, where we unconsciously practice the daily ritual of getting our appearance ready for the rest of the world to see, all the while saying affirmations about our look to ourself in our head while we look in the mirror.

I am fascinated by this self talk that happens in front of a mirror. (I talked a little about self talk in the New Year, Renewed Chi entry.) Think about it: Typically, when we look in a mirror we tell ourself things. These messages are influenced by everything; how we were raised, magazines, marketing messages that are … well … EVERYWHERE, the Web, billboards, our friends, TV, and even video games. Our self talk–perhaps most significantly–stems from our self identity and worth. If we stop to think about our thinking, we can reshape our thoughts and be kinder to ourselves and ultimately live with more joy!

Here’s a random sampling of my self chatter–the words that go through MY brain–when I look in the mirror, at different times: (I’m cringing over a few of these….)
Oh, Becky, you look … (each separate comment happened at different times)
Tired.
Happy.
Calm.
Rushed.
Good.
Pretty.
Did this shirt shrink?
I like my natural look.
I look just messy!
Can I steal a shower today?
Natural’s not workin’ for me today. I need some makeup.
My face looks thin.
Tired.
My face looks plump.
I’ve got a pimple.
Hello there Gorgeous!

I need to do something with my hair.
I LOVE my life and everything in it!
How’d THAT get THERE?
I’m glad I don’t dye my hair. I love my natural color.
Gosh, maybe I SHOULD dye my hair?!!!
I LOVE LOVE LOVE my whites, my wisdom is showing. uhhh, but why do they have to stand up like that?!

Ok, that was a truthful, raw, brutally honest (and brave, don’t ya think?) look at my mirror talk. Yes, there’s room for improvement. How about yours?

Ok, what to do about this? To create a new habit we need to break a pattern. Visual interruptions are great way to jar our habits and create a pause in our thinking long enough to let some sunshine in. So it’s time for a little Monkey Chi Monkey Do magic!

This togetherness project was inspired by the thoughts I’ve shared here already and the books we’ve been reading at our house. I’m reading a book called The Four Agreements by don Miguel Ruiz, and the girls are reading the Harry Potter series by the magnificent Joanne Rowling.  

The Four Agreements shares ancient Toltec wisdom about the power that words have to shape our personal happiness. Ruiz emphasizes the importance of the “First Agreement,” to Be Impeccable With Your Word. Words manifest our intentions. Words are the beginning of our creative power. Words can create and words can destroy.

This book got me thinking about how I use words with others. At our house, we try to be mindful of the words we choose. We tend to use words to lift people and try not to use words that limit or judge folks. So, it seems our out loud words are mostly good and empowering. Whew! That’s good.

Hmmm. But what about the words that we don’t say out loud?  Those words that cruise on auto-pilot through our brains, our own self talk? Our mirror talk?

In Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Chapter 12), Dumbledore tells Harry about the Mirror of Erised. He says that the happiest man on earth would be able to use the Mirror of Erised (desire spelled backwards) and see himself exactly as he is. He says that the mirror gives neither knowledge nor truth, and that men have wasted away before it, entranced by what they have seen, driven mad, not knowing if what is shown is real or even possible. Whoa … Rowling is such a Writer Goddess! Talk about the power of metaphors!

Think about all the mirrors in your house. Mirrors have this magical power to transform our moods, perhaps more often from good to bad, don’t they?

I wondered what my daughters’ self talk sounds like, so I asked them. At ages 9 and 8 I was quite relieved that they have quite beautiful thoughts when looking at their mirror image selves. (Note to self: Investigate this again in a couple years when media and worldly influences aspire to homogenize them and remove their self esteem and self acceptance.)

What is YOUR self talk like? Have you ever asked your partner or child what they tell themself when they look in the mirror? What kinds of things go through your mind while gazing into the looking glass?

Let’s get our friends and family in on an activity to JOLT our self talk and look at ourselves in a different way–literally– with this fun and quick little disconnect-from-technology-and-create-something-together project!

Supply List

♥ Mirrors (all of them in the house)
♥ Water-based or Washable Markers. Test to make sure they will wipe off. If it doesn’t, try rubbing on some magic baking soda (a.k.a. bicarbonate of soda for our Monkey Chi’ers outside the US. I ♥ ♥ ♥ our readers in England, Aussie Land, and New Zealand! If you’re a subscriber from another country, please e-mail me and introduce yourself!)

To draft an inspirational and beautiful Power Talk Word list, simply ask: What words make you feel good and happy? What words feel like word hugs and snuggles? What makes you smile ? If the mirror was your biggest fan, what would it to say to you?

Here’s a sample of what now adorns the mirrors at our house:
Home Sweet Home.
I am HAPPY…I am GOOD!
I LOVE YOU! I LOVE ME!
Parents Rock!
Roses are Red, Violets are blue, I love you, you are just you.

This is COOL!
I love US.
(My Honey made a backwards message that you need another mirror to read, so clever!)
Me Glourius Me (my darling daughter’s spelling … I luv funetic spelling, dowunt yoo?)
A face made out of words that says I’m special. Specialness surrounds me. I love me. Smile. ME rocks! I love me.
Life is life.
I love God. God loves Me.

Oooh, aren’t these words just GORGEOUS and uplifting and happy?!!!!

Come on … I dare you: Break that unwritten rule that says, “Don’t write on your mirrors” and give it a try! Post a comment (use comment linky at the upper left-hand side of this post).

After this rule-breaking self-talk transformer, let’s vow to never nasty negative self-talk ourselves in the mirror, EVER AGAIN! And if we need a reminder, grab the markers and get writing!

Wishing you love love love and the blessings of many wonderful togetherness moments!
Becky and the Monkeys

PS If you like this post, please subscribe by adding your e-mail in the “Monkey Musings” addy box up there on the right! OR tell a friend about us.

EeEeEe! The Monkeys are blogging!

Hiya Creative Monkeys!

Welcome and thank you so much for visiting our page! Your visit here is important because it means you heard about our little monkey business, Monkey Chi Monkey Do, and you’re probably interested in learning more and maybe getting you and yours involved?! (At least we hope so!)

Our little monkey business was born when my darling children-Abbey age 9, and Emma age 8- and I started making Monkey Magic Bubble Wands together. We had such fun creating and painting them. When we “work” on them, it’s really not work at all. We listen to music that makes us feel extra sparkly while we create, and we often talk about the folks who will one day have them in their possession. We say our wishes out loud for our unknown friends, and hope that folks have as much fun playing with the bubbles as we do.

Making and offering playthings is just one part of our Monkey Chi Monkey Do dream. We LOVE offering special things for folks who want to get busy playing with something beautiful and handmade (oh and fun too).

Another part of our dream is to inspire YOU to make something with someone you love. (And then play with it and report back here to share your fun, of course.)

We want to inspire folks to occasionally (and completely) disconnect from modern technology (including but not limited to gaming/communication devices and tvs), and entertain/communicate the old-fashioned- no-batteries-required way: Being present together where you are, creating, playing, and laughing–BEING together. These are the times special memories are made and loving bonds are strengthened.

Later this week we will be sharing our first tutorial for a Gratitude Tree. It’s the first of many natural and simple creations you can make with someone you love.

We’d love to hear from you. Please tell us what your thinking! Are we NUTS? (We think so!)  Have you made something simple and special together with your family? What was it? Share here in comments, or e-mail us directly at info AT MonkeyChiMonkeyDo DOT com.

We are so excited you are still reading … we can’t wait to connect with you! Want to learn more about us, please visit our Web site.

Becky and the Troop

P.S. Did you know a group of monkeys is called a troop? EeeEeeEEE!

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