Monday, October 31, 2011


Done with acrylics and wax crayons

At the core of all addictions is loneliness. It doesn't matter what our addiction is. This includes overeating, shopping, alcohol, drugs, sex, work, relationships, being addicted to someone who is afflicted with the disease of addiction, TV, staying busy, gambling and pretty much anything else we do in an addictive manner (I'm addicted to popcorn and dark chocolate at the moment. I'm still healing from a long bout with insomina. I'm aware that I'm using food to soothe my fears at night. And the fears stem all the way back to childhood). We use our addictions in an attempt to fill an uncomfortable void that gnaws at us internally. Have you ever had that feeling? I have. Even though I've been in recovery for more than 15 years, sometimes I can still touch a deep place inside me that aches.

 Last night was one of those times. I was reading a book that aroused a surge of emotions. Sobbing, I put the book down and sat quietly, reflecting inward. Because I was willing to spend time connecting with my inner feelings, I once again touched the ache in me that comes from a little girl (me) who never felt nurtured or loved by her mother. My mom did her best, but she didn't know how to be loving. All children need to be nurtured emotionally. My needs weren't met so I spent a lot of my life trying to escape the feelings I carried. The feelings were of loneliness. I was always painfully aware that I didn't feel like I fit in anywhere. I've done a lot of work on myself in this area, but like an onion, it has many layers. Last night was time to peel another layer.

I often think about the people who are silently suffering today, carrying around the same gnawing ache I once had. Although I no longer live with that constant ache, I still remember how it feels. I now understand that my earlier experiences with having suicidal thoughts (as a teenager and sometimes even as an adult) was because I felt so alone.

We can heal from all things. It requires though, the courage to become an explorer of your own life. Too often, we are living through other people's stories without knowing our own.

FYI- My writings are a reflection of my own personal beliefs.

My little piece of heaven


 "I am God's beautiful creation"

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Living From Your Heart workbook

This morning I want to share a page from my newest workbook "Living From Your Heart". It addresses co-dependency and is meant to challenge you with questions that will be helpful in examining ways you give and recieve love.

At one time, I was unaware that the love I often gave to others had strings attached to it. Being that I am a recovering co-dependent, being needed gave me a false sense of belonging. To feel loved, I used control and manipulation. I did it so gently and with such kindness that it appeared as if I were being helpful. I finally began to see my issues more clearly. It helped to explain why my sense of belonging never lasted for long. I was trying get validation from others to prove to myself that I was worthy. My journey began to take another direction when I did an honest inventory of myself and became willing to change. Since then, I've learned how helpful being supportive to others is, but I've also learned to trust each person's process without interferring, even when it appears they are struggling. Struggle is part of growing our spiritual muscles. Fixing people is a way to cripple them. Today. I am still working on my issues and sometimes I still fall in the old trap, but more often than not, I have freed myself from being co-dependent. And my sense of belonging comes from deep within me.


page from my workbook

Do you find yourself pushing people away then pulling them back again? It’s a tug of war game we play when we become afraid they’re getting too close.

Have you ever sabotaged a relationship even though you cared for the person? You may have focused on all the things they did wrong instead of their good qualities.

Are you controlling in your relationships?

Can you be spontaneous?

Above are a few sample questions from the workbook. The answers may feel a bit challenging, but if they are, then all the more reason to dig deeper in search of what your truth is. There's a lot of wisdom behind the old saying " the truth shall set you free".


To learn more about the workbook and other available books-

Affirmation for the day

" I no longer look for validation outside of myself "

Saturday, October 29, 2011

An attitude of gratitude

One of my first attempt at this style of art

A beautiful day. Fellowship, lots of laughs and a deep sense of gratitude. How did I get to a place of contentment? At one time, I was filled with resentments, negative thinking and loved wallowing in self-pity. How different my life is today. I traded in my feelings of hopelessness for hope. Instead of anger, I feel love. Instead of chaos, I feel peace. Instead of guilt, I feel forgiveness. We get to turn our lives around by changing our thinking and healing our old hurts. It then frees us, to live in the joy.

                                                      Taken just after a summer shower


"I release the hurts from my past in order to be free"

Friday, October 28, 2011

No more people-pleasing

I've been working on my old habit of being a people-pleaser for a long time. Every now and then, I feel a growth spurt. A new-found strength to be true to myself. It feels empowering, yet guilt show us too. Guilt will attempt to suck me back into my old belief system, but I've learned not to listen to it. Guilt tells me that I'm not worthy and other people's feelings matter more than mine. Guilt tells me it's selfish to put my own needs first. Guilt tells me that my truth isn't important. Guilt lies to me in it's attempt to keep me living small and wounded.

There have been some opportunities the past few weeks to practice being true to myself. Some of these lessons weren't easy ones. I took some big risks standing up for what I believed in. And I am happy to say, it has worked out well.

Sadly, I grew up in an era where children's feelings weren't valued so our emotional needs weren't met. Because of this, the message I internalized as a little girl, was one of unworthiness. This message was incorrect. We are all worthy.


Made her last year. I named her Tulip.


"I will be all that God created me to be"

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Living in moderation

My lesson today is about living mindfully. How quickly I feel out of balance when I don't practice being present to my needs. There's no question that we live in a society today that is fast pace but I can't blame it on that. Having a muscle condition called "FMS" forces me to evaluate every choice I make. When I overdo it, my muscles go in to a flare-up, it then becomes difficult to sleep and I have no energy. I'm not complaining. I've had this condition for a long time and have made friends with it. 

I'm pretty sure that I've always had an addictive personality. In the past, I prided myself on being a great multi-tasker. I could shove a lot of activity into a day. I've since learned from the slogan "Easy Does It". That means slowing down and taking time to smell the roses.

My friend Alicia


Affirmations help to change old patterns of thinking by replacing it with something new.  

"I am present to my life"


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

A leap of faith

The artwork I've been posting is from my new greeting card line. The painting above was done with acrylics and charcoal. This is one of my personal favorites. Makes for a cute birthday card.

The last four years of following my heart to build my business has been fun, as well as, challenging. There have been many times I've been ready to throw in the towel. Sometimes it feels like I'm treading water but never getting to shore. I know it's not true, but I must admit that I've had some tantrums that weren't very lady-like. I've learned though, that you can get used to rejection, not having a paycheck and living in the uncertainty of what's next. I've also learned that first I must believe in myself if I want others to believe in me too. And last, I'm grateful for my stubborn family genes, it has proved to be a huge asset.


I created an angel similar to the angels in my drawings.


                                    A glimpse of my quiet home life. My partner Jack & Pippi

Affirmation for the day
"I trust that everything in my life is in perfect order"

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Opening up to new possibilities

One of the first drawings for my new card line

This morning I woke up feeling excited. This week is about cleaning house. Although housework, to be honest, is not one of my favorite things to do, I love the feeling I get when it's finished. I'm doing a loving thing for myself by hiring someone to do the hard stuff such as windows and tile floors (I would rather use my energy for creating). My excitement is two-fold because not only am I cleaning my house but I am also making some changes in my business. It's time to clean out the things that aren't working and try new ideas. I feel an internal shift taking place as I move towards a new chapter of my life. I've learned to embrace change, trusting that is a necessary part of life. My old way of holding unto things just because they were familiar, doesn't work for me anymore.

"I am willing to change"


Monday, October 24, 2011

My first blog

                                                                                                   My favorite


To my own surprise, I am entering my first blog post. I have resisted giving myself the option to blog because of fear. Fear is always at the root of what blocks me. I remember my first experience with facebook. After several friends suggested that I give it a try, I relented. At first, to be honest, it felt invasive, but then it became a way to communicate with people I had lost touch with. There is a part of me that wants to protect my privacy. But on the other hand, it is my greatest desire to share my experiences and artwork with others. As I tell you more of my story, it will help make sense of the conflict I'm feeling. There have been events in my life, going all the way back to childhood, that make me want to wrap a warm blanket around my life for comfort and protection. So blogging is going to push me out of there to explore new things. I trust that whatever lessons this new adventure brings, will have great value.

I am still working to embrace myself as a writer, teacher, and artist even though I have been rehearsing for it most of my life. It was only a few short years that I discovered a love for drawing. Prior to then, I knew I loved helping people and had worked in different fields such as mental health, addiction, and special needs. I also had a vision from the time I was a young girl that I would write a book one day. But all my desires didn't come together until after the darkest time in my life. That was when my beloved, beautiful daughter Jody, died. She died from a prescription overdose at the age of 27. On that day, I thought my life was over. My heart was broken. But unbeknownst to me at that time, my life would begin again, in a new way. My pain helped me tap into my creativity and losing a child made me stronger. I began taking risks to follow my heart and live my dreams. So here I am today, sharing in hopes of inspiring you to walk through whatever challenges life has brought. Know that pain always comes bearing gifts when you reach the other side of it.


                                                                       Jody Lee Crews


“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us". Marianne Williamson


"There are no barriers to my dreams"