Making A Cottage Art Studio: Part 3 – A Perfectly Imperfect Guest Cottage

My sister finished her term at school and has come to stay with me for the summer. This little bit of heaven, the partially finished corner of my cottage art studio, is perfect for her bohemian spirit. She loves to feel the breeze at night and watch the stars as she goes to sleep.

My Amazing Crew of Young Men!

 Digging out a bush is hard work! With my health so poor that exertion makes me winded and my heart race, having a crew of young men is an amazing thing.
When my two young grandchildren begged to stay with me for a couple days, I warned them I would put them to work. They eagerly agreed so today we are creating a space for the next vegetable herb garden.

I am very proud of them. I give them breaks every hour to play games for 30 minutes, and then we get back to work. We will have ice cream treats when we’re finished.

Update: after trying to pull the stump out with the truck, and having the rope break, my grandson put his back against the wall and pushed with his feet and knocked the stump loose. It was only a matter of minutes until they had pulled it completely out.

Making a Cottage Art Studio : Part 2 – A Zen Attitude

When Melanie left I felt sad, partly because I would miss her and partly because I wanted us to keep working on the art studio!!!  We put one of the 8 paned windows in before she left, and I put the other one in the next day with the help of my sister, niece, and daughter.

Today I decided to make needed repairs on the structure surrounding the area intended for the French doors and also create a space to install the doors.  I was so happy that I had the strength and energy to work on this section without Melanie helping me.  My son Ryan helped when I needed an extra hand, and so did my niece and her son.  It doesn’t look like much yet but I can see the finished product in my mind, and this cottage art studio is going to be beautiful!

Seeing and helping parents work on projects like this is so good for kids, too.  One nice thing about homeschooling is the kids are home to see and help with whatever project we are doing.  Melanie says watching and helping me work on projects while growing up gave her the confidence to tackle similar projects in her own home.  Seeing her work on this cottage with me the other day was sure proof of that, she was the boss lady and I was the helper!

Knowing how easily I tire, my daughters Melanie and Melissa talked to me about going forward with this construction in a “Zen” way.  Work when I have the energy, rest when I need to, and enjoy each step of the process.  It’s all about the journey.

How This Illness Served Me

I scheduled an appointment with a therapist about a week ago (if I am suffering from conversion disorder, therapy is key in recovery) and one of the things she said to me before we got off the phone was, “I also do medical hypnotism which I think could help you get better.”  My first reaction was panic and the thought ran through my head, ‘I don’t want to get better!’

That deserved some exploring.  I began by asking myself why I didn’t want to get better.  In surrendering deeply to the question and feeling what my core feelings were, I realized that I believed if I got better I would have to do things I don’t want to do . . . like living in Florida again, going to work outside my home away from my children, spending my time fulfilling other people’s expectations of me instead of doing what brings me joy.  Those answers were very revealing.

In knowing what was causing me to be afraid of getting well, I also realized that those fears no longer had any foundation.  Maybe I needed an excuse in the beginning to move to Oregon, stay home and rest, and do the things that bring me joy, but not any more.  I can continue living in a way that brings me joy and not worry about what other people expect, or think, of me.


The Medical Medium Diet : Day 34

Yesterday I weighed 161 pounds; today I weighed 163 pounds.

Yesterday, for the first time, I ate some cooked meat on this diet. I ate several pieces of Kentucky fried chicken without the skin. It was so delicious. I had three or four pieces of dark meat at about 7 PM and then two or three more pieces at about 9 PM.  I felt stuffed each time but I felt ravenous for it once I started eating it.  It tasted so good until the last piece each time, then I just felt too full.  I am glad I ate them, though, because I got that out of my system.

I am very happily back on my diet today.

The Medical Medium Diet : Day 31

This morning I weighed 162 pounds, a loss of 13 pounds since I began the diet a month ago.

I have passed the 28 day cleanse timetable and am continuing with this diet to lose more weight and continue cleansing.  The book says it is OK to continue until you are satisfied with your weight and feel like you have accomplished your goals.

I am gradually feeling better and I hope to regain full health.  I still have yet to gather all the herbs the various chapters suggest!  I tallied all the most recommended herbs and foods and “wild” blueberries topped the list.  You can find WILD blueberries in the freezer section in most grocery stores.  They are supposed to be much better than tame ones.

Today I finally made a salad to mix it up and have something other than smoothies and herbal tea and nuts and fruit.  I still used similar ingredients but the texture was refreshing.  I used chopped spinach, celery, avocado, banana, cucumber, raisins, walnuts, sesame seeds, hemp seeds, turmeric powder, parsley, and garlic.  It was delicious!!

A few days ago I made a dessert of powdered chlorella, powdered spirulina, coconut oil, coconut flakes, stevia leaves, hemp seeds, flax seeds, dried apricots, raisins, brazil nuts, and honey.  It tasted a little bit like peanut butter and honey cookie dough.  I made it to keep from eating sweet treats that the rest of the family was having, but they helped me eat my sweet treat too!

Making a Cottage Art Studio : Part 1 Getting Started 


My daughter Melanie and her daughter at the cottage coastruction site.

When my husband and I bought this house, from Melanie and her husband, it came with a workshop. I decided I wanted to turn it into a an art studio so my sister Cheryl and I begin brainstorming ideas.  Of course it would need lots of windows for natural lighting.

Melanie was here yesterday, and today, and energetically suggested we start working on the renovations.  Melanie and I took out some walls and are installing huge windows for the natural light an art studio needs.

Besides an art studio, this cottage will also house a guest room and stables for a couple horses!  Updates coming as we progress.