Week 48 of good deeds


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This will be brief, as my sister and her family are visiting, and it’s such a precious joy to have them here, but sharing my week with you in this way is such a great joy too, and has become such an anchor that I consciously choose to make time for it. May reading this post serve you, whether it be to make you smile, to remind you of the good you have done and received this week or in whatever other way the words work their magic, because I do believe in magic and I sure believe in words, and the combination – well, that’s powerful stuff:-)

Sunday 13th April

Started packing up my stuff still left at the house, in preparation for Mum moving out.

AND good deed(s) received:

Mum made me a crepe, when I made a mess of it – twice!!!

Monday 14th April

I led a games session in French and enjoyed and encouraged the laughter at my unusual accent (I learned my french in Africa)  Went home with Mum that evening so I could help with continue preparing and packing the house next day.

AND good deed(s) received:

Mum treated me to take away and we went to a concert at our local community arts venue. It was excellent, and had us all singing along and swaying.

Tuesday 15th April

Mowed the lawns and helped Mum with more sorting/packing.

AND good deed(s) received:

Mum and I laughed so much, and the was just a lot of joy in sharing some of the precious memories from our time in this house as we worked to begin to make it ready for the next tenants. I was given a  cup of tea and had a lovely catch up chat with one of our neighbours, who said they would miss me.

Wednesday 16th April

Spent a lot of time properly preparing for a presentation in French on the topic of personal and planetary transformation, as I’m pretty rusty with the language.

AND good deed(s) received:

I listened to a very inspiring talk from one of the Gaia House teachers, and I’m just so grateful that this wisdom is so easily accessible to me. For a donation of 2 pounds I get an hour of warm, inspiring spiritual direction and encouragement that I can listen to again and again.


Thursday 17th April

Gave a thoughtful and fun final English lesson to the group who’ve been here a month, and chatted with someone about silent retreats, as she will soon do one of five days – her first. Did food shopping for my sister’s arrival, and hoovered the house as part of making it ready and welcoming.

AND good deed(s) received:

Incredibly warm appreciation from the french group for the presentation I gave, from the English students, from the woman I chatted to about silent retreats…yes, lots of appreciation today:-) Left me feeling a little full!

Friday 18th April

Did a one on one creative writing session with a new student which took us both quite deep. Cooked for my sister and her family, so they walked in after a long journey to a meal ready and lovingly prepared. Delivered our lawnmower to a friend, who’s just moved into a new house and bought it from us.

AND good deed(s) received:

My new student chose to pay me more than I asked for. Mum gave me strawberries. Family arrived for a visit, driven up all the way from Germany!!! They were very appreciative of the dinner and gave me such lovely warm hugs when they arrived, especially the three kids.

Saturday 19th April

Helped get a lovely buffet style breakfast ready for us all, and booked us in for a pony trek on the beach nearby as my niece is mad about horses, just like I was at that age.

AND good deed(s) received:

My brother in law treated us all to lunch and we had the most hilarious game of charades after dinner that evening, especially when my Mum tried to get us to guess ‘Loch Ness Monster’. My niece did brilliantly with Cleopatra, part of which involved pointing to a banana and then drawing a a triangle in the air, which means pyramid, obviously!

I wish you a wonderful week dear friends. Hugs, Harula xxx

NaPoWriMo 18 – Listen


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Hello dear friends, sorry this one’s late. I have family visiting, who arrived yesterday and, well, I also wanted to share how I’m hitting an edge at this point of NaPoWriMo. I’m nervous that the quality of what I’m writing is decreasing and it starts to feel a bit forced. It’s an interesting challenge, and I’m very grateful for the support of all those who are taking the time to read. I’m going to continue – just letting you know…I know! Oh, this poem is about something that happened years ago, came up yesterday in a one on one creative writing session I did with someone. Blessings on your day!


she said

scared and shamed

I wanted to leave

there and then

until I breathed

and found

the gentle cell

of truth

within the angry body

of her attack

and met it

with open arms

laughing at myself

for forgetting

I too make mistakes






NaPoWriMo 17 – None of the above


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I entered

the sleeping house

on tip toe

and promptly dropped my mobile phone


I turned up the heat

and got sidetracked

returning to burnt food

and having to start again

I smiled

with as much smile

as I could muster

but my heart still bled


for I tried so hard to be quiet

I tried so hard to be quick

I tried so hard to be happy

and ended up

none of the above









NaPoWriMo 16 – Overdressed


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I saw through

my bedroom window

a handsome pheasant

who made me feel

distinctly under dressed

being still in my pyjamas

and yet

like the emperors clothes

just a featherful illusion

for the pheasant

was doing nothing but

flaunting natural finery


nakedness of the body

would be perhaps a little cold

but nakedness of the soul?

what fears

am I wearing

to clothe my own light?





NaPoWriMo 15 – Mundane miracles


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from my screen lined cave

reality hit me

with a Monet sky

of soft dappled blue

and I stared at the clouds


for their beauty had snuck up on me

catching me

and my breath


to wrench me from dull numbness

into the common joy

of mundane miracles





NaPoWriMo 13 – If you could bottle it…


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The salsa music

insists we dance

as pancakes dripping with nutella

and happy fingers folding pizza

into an eager mouth

too small to take it all in

blend to form

a heady mix called joy

that fills the small cafe

whose well-equipped kitchen

still lacks the machinery

to bottle and sell

its secret ingredient

Week 47 of good deeds


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rubikshttp://livingintheshadowlands.wordpress.com/2012/02/21/how-the-rubix-cube-changed-my-life/ (image credit, and an interesting post…)

It’s here for another reason (see Saturday) but actually, the Rubik’s cube works well as a symbol for week 47. This week has been quite chaotic (a mixed up Rubik’s) but somehow I feel like I’ve stayed connected to the knowing that, underneath that wild mismatch of colours there are six balanced sides waiting to be revealed. It’s good to know, and it’s also good to acknowledge that, you know what, sometimes I don’t want life to be that neat! I like rainbows. Knowing that I have the tools, that I know how to balance things if I want to, is enough. Not managing to ‘solve’ life all the time is, well, part of the fun.

Sunday 6th April

Gave encouragement and feedback to two of the older girls who had decided to choreograph a dance/acrobatics performance together.

AND good deed(s) received:

Was invited as an ‘honoured guest’ (their words!) to visit a den two of the children had created it the woods. Their first adult guest – how privileged was I!!?

Monday 7th April

Spent some dedicated time reflecting on Rwanda, it being the 20th anniversary of the genocide, and sending love and blessings to my friends there.

AND good deed(s) received:

Lots of appreciation for the poem that I wrote in response to my reflection time.

Tuesday 8th April

Went on a hunt for music for one of the older girls who plays the ukelele, as she wanted to learn some new songs.

AND good deed(s) received:

Had a lot of fun during a creative session where people were invited to share songs and music, and was thoroughly entertained by watching all the adults dance to YMCA while it was played on a ukelele and sung by a twelve year old girl.

Wednesday 9th April

Checked in with the kitchen crew to let them know that the parents had asked that we hold back on the chips and fish fingers so the children would try more of the ‘adult’ food. At the same time, I shared how much the children had enjoyed the child friendly menus of pasta, moussaka and homemade pizza, so ‘extra friendly’ food wasn’t really necessary.

AND good deed(s) received:

On the beach, when one of the children asked me, ‘what are you doing?’ and discovered I was collecting shells, he offered to help. Had fun with one of the mums, the only adult who joined me in eating burnt marshmallows along with the kids:-)

Thursday 10th April

Prepared a fun party for the children, including inviting one of the Thai boys to come and show them some of his magic tricks, and how quickly he can do the Rubik’s cube. Remember those? I messed it up good and proper and, after having a good look at it, he ‘solved’ it in less than a minute, with his hands moving lightening fast! Incredible! I just loved seeing the other children’s jaws drop with wows of amazement.

AND good deed(s) received:

I was taught several magic tricks myself, now I just have to practice my poker face, or I’ll spoil everything…BUT I did manage to act as assistant on one trick without the children realising it was me helping the magician guess the card!

Friday 11th April

Took time to listen to another side of a squabbling sibling story, which had gotten to the point of tears. I managed to stay out of it in terms of not taking sides, but made myself available to both and the tears slowly faded. It’s not easy being a pre-teen. I really felt for these kids, and I’m so grateful to them for reminding me of what it looks and feels like to be authentic with emotion because you haven’t yet learned, or been taught, to hide from others or yourself what you’re really feeling.

AND good deed(s) received:

There were sooooo many laughs in today, not least several of the kids turning up for our celebration dinner in animal onesies! They looked something like this (this isn’t one of ‘our’ kids though). Did you know, dinosaurs really LOVE raspberry cheesecake, but they’re not so keen on herbs in their lasagne…

onesie(image credit: http://www.mightyape.co.nz/product/Dinosaur-Kigurumi-Kids-Onesie-Large/21448902/images/15249444/)

Saturday 12th April

Took time to say goodbye to the families, especially the children, and waved them off as they left. I then helped the team who were cleaning the bungalow for the new arrivals, as the families hadn’t had much time and the place needed some TLC. Found that one boy had left a rucksack behind, and managed to arrange for it to be sent on to his next address. Had lunch with the one remaining family, a mother and son who were staying on for a few days, and gave them some pointers in terms of things to do and see, and found some left over dessert (because I knew he’d loved it) from last night to cheer up the boy (aged 7) who was tearful and sad after having to say goodbye to all his new friends all in one go – bless!

AND good deed(s) received:

Received some warm and sincere hugs and thanks from the families, and also from the two Thai boys I’ve been teaching, as we had our last lesson that afternoon. It was a goodbyeful day – I tell you, my heart was seriously aching by the end of it – but in a good way I guess.

I wish you a beautiful rainbow week, and one you only solve if that’s what you really want to do:-) Otherwise – many multi-colour blessings to you all! Hugs, H xxx

NaPoWriMo 12 – In triplicate


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in triplicate

sealed with assurances

of future meetings

we know aren’t guaranteed


amid talk

of the final goodbye

and what to do

when she chooses to leave

the bag of bones

it’s hard

to still call a body


then I remember to stop

and say hello

to the me being wildly tossed

in all this coming and going

so she knows

I know

she’s still here









NaPoWriMo 11 – Veneer


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When you answered my question

even though it broke

your tough-boy veneer

I broke too


I knew

the best I could do

was to let you believe

your veneer was only scatched


but I’d seen your sweetness

and ached for your shame

I’d certainly never want

to be twelve again


I’ve been that cruel sister

and the tender innocent

too, like you -

how I wish I could make your journey easier










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