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Beginning a new chapter

advent-12-13-16One of the reasons I started writing these Advent posts was a way for me to reflect on the past year while preparing my heart and soul for the annual transition through the holidays and into the new year, and from the dark of winter to the light of spring. These days when more and more minutes of the day are in darkness, so many things become harder. The discipline of making and writing help me through this time.

Many theologians write about the “dark nights of the soul,” times we all have experienced where life challenges us for whatever reason. Sometimes these challenges loom over us, other times they pick, pick, pick away at our fiber, inciting us to change: to step out of an old story, an old way of being and into a new way of being.

I am working to change some things in my life, but I keep getting stuck in a couple of thorny areas. I need accountability, deadlines, homework. Some of it I am good at creating for myself, but other things, well, it’s great to have an outsider help me examine my life and guide me through the creation of goals and plans. Over the past six months or so, I’ve been working with Amber Chand, a visionary life and business coach. Amber has this gift of being able to inspire, calm and encourage while also subtly pushing you to walk out of what no longer serves you and towards the things that you love, that the world needs and that you are gifted in doing. While much of my life is centered around those things, I need to shift a little, and she is helping me name what that means.

Here’s a bit more about Amber:

Amber Chand offers her clients an opportunity to navigate skillfully through times of uncertainty and transition. Her focus is on helping you to step confidently into your future,  claiming an authentic new story that enlivens you and gives expression to your unique gifts and talents in the world.  She takes you on a unique journey – one in which you are introduced to powerful principles and practices that give you the tools to step with confidence and clarity into the next chapter of your life.   Amber is an inspirational teacher and has a remarkable ability to weave together deep, intuitive processes with practical, strategic action steps that you will take, whether in your business or in your life.  I highly recommend her.
Here is a link to her Coaching Programs:
Feel free to contact her at or call her at 413-822-0551 to set up a complimentary session, by phone, skype or in person.   You will be happy you did.


Today’s Assignment:

  1. Begin with a highly patterned piece of paper as your first layer. Mute it with gesso if you have it, or just leave it as is.
  2. Take another piece of paper that has interesting yet contrasting texture. Cut it randomly in 2-3 places. Reassemble those pieces over your first layer, letting a bit of the first layer peek through.
  3. Add a third “activation” layer. In my case I am using one of my figure stencils. You can either add a paper layer or a gesso layer, like I did here.
  4. Add a fourth layer. It can be a transfer, it can be something like the dotted lines I have here, or something else. You decide.

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