Inspiration of the Month – Living Artfully


Living artfully is about being in love with life, celebrating your unique talents, and creating soulful relationships. I’m a big believer in art and creativity and how it can transform your life.

I haven’t always lived artfully. The deceptive comfort of idleness and taking things for granted, had often held sway. Then I got a wake-up call. It wasn’t a huge alarm, but a subtle whisper from God nudging me to live with purpose and not take things for granted because tomorrow is not promised. The whisper also encouraged me to share my heart and talents to help others live artfully. This is all I needed to ‘hear’ to get back on track.

If you feel like your life is not going in the direction you would like, then stop and reassess your intentions. Dream bigger than the state you live in and you will be surprised by what happens. I hope to inspire you to create the life you imagine and nurture yourself with love.

Whatever it means to you, Live Artfully!

“The more I think, the more I feel that there is nothing more truly artistic than to love people.”

– Vincent van Gogh

Inspiration of the Month – Passion

New Picture (1)

I must share a recent deeply inspiring experience … adjudicating amazing and talented dancers at the Grand National Dance Competition in Wisconsin Dells. It was like the Olympics of dance. In all my years of adjudicating dance competitions, I’ve never seen more gifted dancers and performers. In addtion to a fabulous time, I developed new relationships I’ll treasure for a long time. I left Wisconsin with a full heart and enriched creative inspiration. I thank God for bestowing the passion of dance and art inside me. I am truly grateful for what it offers … the power to heal, bless and move the soul.


Inspiration of the Month – Receiving the prize too soon

New Picture

We’ve all experienced times when something was given to us too soon. Perhaps it was a promotion, material possession or an opportunity. Years ago, I remember asking God for the principle role in a major show because I felt perfect for the part. I studied the landscape of the role and thoroughly considered what I could offer as an artist. Alas, God had a different plan. I auditioned and was hired as a member of the ensemble. Thankfully, I wasn’t too heartbroken. But I wondered why God was holding out on the prize.  A little while later, I received my answer when God whispered, “you have more to learn.” It wasn’t my time.

I grew to understand a very important lesson … better not question God’s timing because he truly has your best interest and knows what you “need” before you “want” it. If you let go and allow opportunities to take their own course, you will have peace in your decisions and less heartbreak. God puts us in process before giving us the prize.

Inspiration of the month – Creativity

It’s pumpkin time … and time to tap deeper into your creativity! Whether it’s looking at an old project or new one with fresh eyes … writing a story  … or drumming up new crazy ‘off-the-wall’ ideas. The benefits from increasing creativity in your ‘everyday’ life are endless. You’ll become a more confident and happy person and inspire others to be creative too. I challenge you to add more creativity to your life. Break free of the comfort zone and what feels easy. Dream, Explore, Learn, Create!!

Inspiration of the Month – the Blueberry Festival in Girdwood, Alaska

Blog pic

Do you want to get inspired, reinvent yourself, or start a new project? Well here’s the encouraging news!! Start small so you don’t get overwhelmed with the quest for perfection. Getting inspired to make positive changes in your life is never about being perfect. Start small, take a long morning or  afternoon walk, or write a letter to yourself about all the things you like about yourself. Or … call an old friend, or post positive words of affirmations all over the house. Push yourself to do the things you don’t want to do, so you can become the person you were meant to be. Action is the key to becoming more powerful. So get inspired and creative. I’m rooting for you!

Remembering Mom – Shane Morton

My mother was something special.  I suppose we all think that in some way.  She had already raised 3 kids when I surprised her and dad much later in life.  Mom and I had a special bond for some reason.  I viewed her through the eyes of someone who knew that he was holding something precious. Something so fragile that it could break at any moment.

When I was 4 my Mom developed an inner ear disorder that made her extremely dizzy if she stood.  We missed out on so many moments together through my young life because of her disability.  I didn’t understand and I would lash out at her when my frustration got to deep.  I shudder to think of some of the words that came out of my childish and immature mouth now.  Huge regrets there.

When I was 15 I performed in Agatha Christies Mousetrap.  It was the first time I truly excelled at something and I so wanted to share it with her.  When she didn’t come it left jagged tears in me.  I can’t explain what happened next.  My mother who had been practically chair bound since before I started school, stood up and was never sick again.  Yes, that means that the illness that she was suffering from wasn’t some ear problem.  It was something that was in her head.  She shook it off and never felt it again.  Heck, she now wouldn’t stop moving.  She would drag us around all over the place.

My mother and I found so much in common in our later years together.  We had always been close.  But now we were finding out how much alike we truly were.  We were getting to experience so much together.  She showed me what strength lies inside us if we could only be brave enough to reach down and pull it out.  Something I think I have excelled in ever since she showed me.

My mother died of cancer when I was 24.  I saw her suffer for the last two years of her life and saw her fight with everything that she had.  I held her hand as she passed away and it was one of the most precious moments of my half lived life.  I think of her often.  When I have hard decisions to make, I try to make the one that she and my father would be proud of.  I try to live my life with as much love and wonder as they did.  I try to be the person that they always wanted me to be.  I follow my artistic passions just as they wanted.  I am proud that they were the parents I was blessed with.  There is so much that I miss about her.  Her laugh, her talents, I used to love to watch her piece quilts.  The intricate stitching that she was able to do awed me.  I miss her smile.  I miss talking to her.  I miss watching old movies with her.  I suppose there is nothing that I do not miss.

She has been gone for almost half of my life now.  Her birthdays come and go.  The day she died…comes and go’s.  Everything is an anniversary of sorts now.  A countdown to slowly forgetting the things you want to remember.  Growing numb to the pain of loss and feeling a little guilty about the fact that time does make it easier. Christmas is the one time that my family, especially my mother demands attention from me.  The holiday has never been a religious holiday for my family, it was about togetherness and presents and decorations.  I have the love of the holiday because of my mother.  I pull out decorations and think of her.  I trim the tree and see her smiling and humming.  When I wrap presents I remember the joy she showed when she was able to give gifts to me and the rest of the family.  I remember the sadness when we had a hard year and didn’t have as much there.  I cook a big dinner just like we did at home. I will always be proud to be her son.  I hope when she checks up on me she is as proud of me.

Remembering Mom – Julia Maddox

My mother passed away two months ago. I still can’t believe she’s gone. Mom was an animal lover so at her funeral instead of flowers we requested donations to the local Humance society. She would have loved that.  Right now I’m just being with the fact that there’s a big hole in my life. I’m sad and that’s OK. When I’m ready I’ll fill it with things that really make a difference for people.

Springtime is here!


Spring is officially here!  It’s time to brush off the winter blues. It’s time to clean our homes, put those sneakers on and hit the road, or sign up for a new yoga class. It’s time to re-focus on health and passions. As we inhale the clean spring air and observe the blossoms blooming, let us first give thanks for our many blessings. Here’s to a fantastic and exciting spring!

Inspiration of the Month – Feeling Powerful

Feeling powerful starts with telling the truth about where you are in your life. Do you feel stuck or unsure about how to take the next step to your dreams? If you’re not currently aware of your purpose in life, it doesn’t matter. Just pick any activity to get moving in some direction. This will help you discover your purpose and awaken your dreams. Get off the couch. Doing nothing may feel easy, but it makes you unhappy.

“… the risk of moving toward our dreams is much lower than the slow, everyday punishment you inflict on yourself by suppressing your dreams.”

– Mel Robbins