Thursday, June 28, 2012

Sew and sew

Despite all the mad triathlon-ing I have been doing a bit of sewing, here and there.
 For Fathers day the children requested a bicyle for Paul, and so I did the best I could - sadly I love the back the best, I love that the stitching on the back is still most definitely a bike!

 This is Mr Mouse, a gift for my brother in law, and a partner for Millicent, the mouse I made for my sister birthday back in April.  (Speaking of my sister, they have found out they are expecting a boy!!)
This is just a little stuffed heart, a small token for folksy.

And I'm loving these - 2 pairs of cut-offs up-cycled into Yoga bags to hopefully sell on Tangled Muse.  They were a great project and I have many more pairs of trousers to up-cycle!!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Tri sisters

We did it!!!  We set ourselves a goal, we trained for it and we completed the Henley Triathlon and I absolutely loved it!!!  It was adrenalin filled, scary, fun, amazing, and just the best experiance. Everyone was so friendly.  Just brilliant brilliant brilliant.

Waiting my turn to get in the water and start my race

Lucy is in front and I am behind her, leaving the pool and entering 'transition' to get on our bikes

Swim and bike done, here we are (I am the mini white top above the giant yellow arrow and Lucy is in the green cap) setting off on our run

The children amusing themselves as we raced

Coming in to finish - Triumphant!

The finish behind us and proudly wearing our medals
I was delighted to come in 8th from last!!  Ha ha, we had said all along we didn't want to be last, and we weren't.  Job well and truly done!!  Now, this Southampton Tri at the end of Aug..  What do we think peeps?

Thursday, June 21, 2012


It has become tradition to swap a wreath with The Tippers at each Sabbat.  I love that we do this because I am not sure I would ensure I put up a fresh wreath for each festival if it were just for us, so its good to do.  We each have a heart shaped wreath that we undo each time, and then refill with fresh flowers or whatever we have chosen to use.  My neighbour has a gorgeous lavendar bush and she kindly let us cut a great swathe of lavendar this morning, so that is what we have used for Litha this time.

Paul was at work, Lochie was at school and Niamh was napping, Bebe ate her lunch and I began the the Tippers Litha Wreath for 2012.  I fell so in love with the lavendar, and because there was so much left that I then made a wreath for my Sacred Space, then I filled a pentagram and Bebe made an offering too.  It was a very fulfilling hour together. 

We have had a great day and I am looking forward to my second Yoga session tonight. I still don't have the words to update on that.  This will probably be my last post before the triathlon on Sunday.  I am not sure what to say there either really..  We have trained hard, I know we can achieve it and I am confident we will be pleased with our efforts.  I promise I will do my best not to let you down Lucy!!

Happy Solstice Clanettes.  May you be filled with inspiration x x

Friday, June 15, 2012


Aunty Claire's birthday was last weekend and the kidlets asked if they could make her some bunting.. so make her some bunting we did! We had a planning meeting and decided what they wanted it to say. Niamh was integral to this process, switching the letters up and messing with the paper was key.
I drew each letter and then they set to painting, and after all the flags were dry, we strung them onto parcel ribbon.  I am assured it is currently hung with pride of place in Claires house.  The children were delighted with it!

In other news, it's Friday today, and we are entering into our last weekend before THE triathlon!  We have had our participant emails through - my race starts at 11.10am, Lucy goes slightly before me at 11.09am.  Very real now!  We have trained very hard this week, and after my glorious post on Monday, I came crashing down after we did the full distance bike/run brick on Wednesday.  I was (am?!) exhausted!  I came home, let Paul sort me a bath and then went straight to bed.  We are planning a run/swim brick tonight, with our last 'big' training session planned for Sunday.  Next week will be all about keeping some motion going, but mainly resting.

I have also been busy with a little sewing project this week, I'm delighted with it, but my lips are sealed for a little while longer!

We have been busy in the garden, the Sacred Space is now complete and fabulous.  Thank you x x and Mr Travers was kind enough to share some plant cuttings with me, so I have put them in and we are hoping they will thrive.

Yoga started last night, Lucy drove here and I then drove us both to the other side of town.  I really enjoyed myself, although it wasn't what I was expecting.  I have a lot to process and mull over there, so I will save that update for another time.

Have a good weekend Clanettes x x

Monday, June 11, 2012


Clanettes!  Please join me in ROOAARRRING at our amazing-ness.  I am feeling absolutely amazing right now and whilst you sit and read the narrative I am about to gush at you, please take a mo to think of two amazing things that you are really proud of and pleased with.  I can list many more than two, ha ha!
Training is going great right now, but it ought to be with only 12 days until THE triathlon.  I am the lightest weight I have been since forever, I have hit a new pb for cycling and I am fresh off a great 5k run/swim brick session.  I feel like I can accomplish anything right now.

Yesterday, Sun 10th June, I took part in my second Sportif with Paul and my Dad (Hello Daddy!).  Seeing us come in from the 01st April ride, my Dad was inspired to take up cycling again and we agreed that we needed to do an event together.  We just couldn't find the right one on a date we could all make, until this last minute race came up and it was only 5 miles up the road from their house.  Perfect. 

As last week was the long jubilee weekend, Lucy and I had gone out on the Monday (post birthday!) and we did a full distance ride/run brick session and then I swam in the afternoon and whilst I felt good, I was tired.  We went to visit my parents on the Tuesday, because it was half term, and I went for a ride with my Dad on the Wednesday.  Oh my word, it was so hard, it was a great 26 mile route but my legs just had nothing in them and I found it quite a challenge.  My Dad on the other hand was impressive, and I began to wonder what I had taken on in agreeing to a Sportif so close to the Triathlon.  So I did what I do naturally - rest!  Between Wednesday and the ride on Sunday, I only swam (on the Friday) and let myself rest up and take it easy (it was lovely!).

Despite the wet weather warnings, Sunday dawned dry and cool.  We left my parents house at 7.15am, waving goodbye to my Mum (Hello Mummy!) and the kidlets, before cycling the 5 miles to the start/finish line.  The route actual was 34 miles long and we set off at 8.35am.  It was beautiful, a great route that my Dad and I have already talked about doing again.  There were two stinker hills, but I gritted my teeth, got my mental 'kill it' hat on and sat it out.  It was very disheartening to see so many riders get off their bikes half way up the hill, to walk the rest of the way, and for them to be going faster than me, still doggedly sat on my bike pedalling for all I am worth!  Paul and my Dad breezed up the hills and were great for encouraging me up and over the crest.

I knew we were flying down hill and on the flat, but I couldn't believe it when the trusty garmin confirmed we had done 14.5mph average over the entire journey, including the 5 miles back to my parents house.  14.5mph average over a 46.5mile distance absolutely smashs my previous best times and I am absolutely delighted with myself.  I believe I text Lucy and told her to look 'euphoric' up in the dictionary, and there would be a pic of me smiling at her.  Amy is just a great bike, and now her saddle and my botty are friends again, I don't think there is any stopping us!!

So, given that I was already feeling smug and happy and euphoric, I gingerly went to the gym this evening with Lucy, and we stormed it on the treadmill.  We did 5k in 36 minutes (plus a few secs, can't remember precisely, I was too busy celebrating).  I am quite sure its not Lucys best time, she is a running goddess, but its my best time ever ever ever.  After the run, we swam and I right now, just feel great.  Yes, my legs are tired, but I don't feel like I've reached my limit yet.

I could seriously gush and gush on about what we have achieved in the last 6 months, but you read this blog, you know.  In 6 months I have gone from being barely able to wheeze my way through 1 min of running, followed by 2 mins of walking, followed by another wheezing minute of running, to running 5k in a time I know I haven't nailed yet.  I am loving being on a road bike averaging 14.5mph, and I am enjoying swimming.  I have lost over 2st, without hugely mad diet changes, and with only another stone to go, I FEEL AMAZING.  If I can do this, if me, a fat house wife, can contemplate doing this crazy training then anyone can do it.  Seriously, really and truly.  And I tell you what, you won't know yourself, you'll just wake up one day and know you haven't reached your limits yet.  Its glorious.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Moonlodges and Mandalas

I blogged a few posts ago about a Sacred Woman workshop offered by the yoga sanctuary and I'm not sure if I mentioned anything about it afterwards?  The workshop itself was great, the afternoon was lovely, if not really what I was expecting.  I decided that I probably wouldn't get much out of the ongoing course, but that I would really like to explore yoga some more (Yoga starts next Thursday and I can't wait!). 

Lucy and I came away from the afternoon full of inspiration and with Holly, we got together for a moonlodge or red tent type evening.

Its hard to describe what a Moonlodge is, because all of my experiances have been led by the same group of people in the past.  I enjoyed this description "The Moon Lodge is the place of women, where women gather during their menstrual time to be at-one with each other and the changes ocurring in their bodies. Long ago, during this special time of moon cycles, women were removed from duties of family and allowed to retreat to the Moon Lodge to enyoy the company of their Sisters.

Traditionally, the Moontime is the sacred time of woman when she is honored as a Mother of the Creative Force. During this time she is allowed to release the old energy her body has carried and prepare for reconnection to the Earth Mother's fertility that she will carry in the next Moon or month. Our Ancestors understood the importance of allowing each woman to have her Sacred Space during this time of reconnection, because women were the carriers of abundance and fertility.

As Grandmother Moon is the weaver of tides ( the water or blood of our Earth Mother) so a woman's cycles follow the rhythm of that weaving. When women live together in a common space, their bodies begin to regulate their menses and all will eventually have their Moontime concurrently. This natural rhythm is one of the bonds of Sisterhood.

Women honor their sacred path when they acknowledge the intuitive knowing inherent in their receptive nature. In trusting the cycles of their bodies and allowing the feelings to emerge within them, women have been Seers and Oracles for their tribes for centuries."

taken from

I suppose essentially it is a meeting of women who have come together to just be.  What they do or share during a Moonlodge is up to them.  The details of our first moonlodge I shall leave sacred, however I am keen to share the mandala we made.

A mandala, according to the Collins dictionary is
mandala (ˈmændələ, mænˈdɑːlə)
1. Hindu & Buddhist art any of various designs symbolizing the universe, usually circular
2. psychol such a symbol expressing a person's striving for unity of the self
[Sanskrit: circle]

I like to think of them as sacred art.  I specifically chose to make the formation of ours mindless, and so therefore relaxing, and the resulting art was not the point - using edible and natural objects to create art doesn't lend itself to anything that will last. 

There is a great description here 'creating them is a meditation and leaving them signifies the beauty and impermenance of life.'

Anyway!!  I am quite sure I over thought the process, and when Lucy and Holly read this entry they will be like 'what?!'  Either way, I was delighted with the results and have many ideas for making them in my Sacred Space outside..  Enjoy!