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Wednesday, December 9, 2015

On the eighth day of Christmas, Bijou whispered to me . . .


. . . a suggestion to present be.

BE PRESENT

Molly writes:
I see it more and more – buttons, bags, signs, and apparel touting this message or something of the sort – "Be present" "Be in the moment" "Just be" – but what does that mean?

I am present. I cannot possibly be the past or be the future? Can I? Of course not.

But the truth is, our minds often wander to another place or time that is not in the present here and now. We hash over what has already happened, as if we can change it. We worry about what might happen next, as if we can predict it. And, we miss what is happening at this red hot (chili pepper) moment.


Nowadays, it's also too easy to spend so much time calling, texting, photographing, and posting an experience that we miss the actual experience. What if we could reset our clocks to the present time zone and fully participate in our journeys as we are experiencing them?


I have found that creating Zentangle art resets this clock for me. It slows me down as I focus on the one stroke at hand. I don't focus on the one I made before and I cannot predict how the next one will go. I certainly cannot do all three! If I tried, it would jeopardize the quality of it all.

When I purely focus on the one stroke at hand, as if it is the only one there is, something beautiful happens. I then move on to the next with that same intention and in that way, I get more out of each moment.

This has trickled into my life too. I find myself more aware of where I am and who I'm with. I'm also less likely to overbook myself which just results in my rushing to the next event, not able to enjoy where (and when) I am. Also, by not trying to capture every memory on a camera, I can enjoy the moment more. Now, I pocket my phone when I am with others.

And whenever I discover that, once again, I've forgotten where when I am, I say to myself, "Time to do a little tangling to reset my clock!"

Cheers to being present – now and everywhen!

-----+-----

Maria writes:
This is a fun project for sure. The trick is to find a glass or vase with fairly straight sides and not much pattern in the glass.

Molly had this idea. She held the tiles while Julie poured in some wild rice.

You could also use white rice or lentils or black beans, but dry please! Noah had given me this "bouquet" of hot peppers ('cause I love all things spicy). You don't want to put live flowers or plants in the rice. Dried flowers, or even a branch from your yard would do. (You could hang more Bijou tiles from the branches!)

Have fun!

-----+-----

Winners from Day Seven:
  • Lady Dragoness 
  • Charchick 
  • Hazel Shepherd

Congratulations! Winners, please send your snail mail address to Zentangle (at) gmail (dot) com.

We're all having so much fun with this . . . thank you for all your wonderful comments!

Rick, Maria, Bijou, Molly, and Julie 

61 comments:

Jennifer Matthaei Cottrell said...

This was the topic of a networking luncheon I attended today!! Love the vase idea - you guys are just so creative!!!!

Ester Massuger said...

I'm wondering how you guys keep coming up with all these creative ideas :)

Elipella said...

A great reminder for staying in present awareness- thank you. I love your work and teachings. Just did a Christmas workshop with CZT Diane Lachance last Saturday- just focusing on one stroke at a time. Before I knew it, four hours passed! Mindful in the moment:)

Holly Williams said...

Be present and slow down! I had a student in my class today who said, "I'm so slow, I didn't even finish!" I congratulated her for taking her time and not hurrying! <3

Melissa Cahn said...

Mindfulness and Zentangle go hand in hand. Being present for another person is a true gift. Thanks for the inspiration.

Janice Mantell said...

The ideas just keep getting better! I'm going to slow down and enjoy creativity!

topstitch said...

That little guys is the cutest thing. Did someone make him? Does he have a change of clothes for the holidays?

Jo Ellen

Linda Dochter said...

What a great idea! It prompted me to use some recycled glassware from a chemistry lab.

Laura Oldham said...

I, too, have found that being present while creating art work does then show up with a greater ability to be present in other spaces in my life. Love the vase idea!

Onefineteacher said...

Tangling does help me to be present in the moment! I need to be tangling more during my day, that's for sure! Thanks for your wonderful ideas!

swxe said...

My favorite so far! Love the tangles, love the reminder, love the mini-peppers, even love the elf --- and I'm not usually an elf / gnome kinda girl ;-)

Dorian said...

Being in the moment and not stressing about the end result...important for this time of year.

Jan Brandt said...

Molly, your post was WONDERFUL! I must admit to missing special moments, incredible views & sudden surprises because my eyes are on my camera screen. My husband has tried to tell me ... but the way you put it finally got in. What a gift you've given me! Thank you, my dear. :)

Jan Brandt said...

Molly, your post was WONDERFUL! I must admit to missing special moments, incredible views & sudden surprises because my eyes are on my camera screen. My husband has tried to tell me ... but the way you put it finally got in. What a gift you've given me! Thank you, my dear. :)

Cathrine n said...

Words of wisdom and all true. Hopefully we take heed.

Donna Pilato , CZT 18 said...

Such a great, easy idea and, as always, a terrific reminder from Bijou.

Angelia Lanouette said...

Zentangle is the perfect way to remind us to live in the moment! Thank you!

Wendy H said...

i really like to see all the beautiful tangles that you share. I'm still at the learning stage and like to see everyone's ideas.

Wendy said...

So true. I love the wee elf man x

Phyllis C said...

Thanks for another great suggestion--be present and be in the moment. A great reminder for all of us

CraftyQuilter said...

Be present, how true... perhaps all all my gifts shall come with a special tangle tag saying
"Enjoy Christmas,...And your gift,... But most of all I hope this this present will remind you to be present,... Participate, remember and embrace... Every holiday, every family day, even every average day,...You'll never miss the joy, the beauty, the memories we tend to let slip by us.... Let the true meaning of the holiday enhance you, your family and your world."
I think it needs a rewrite. But I think the thoughts your post triggered comes through. Thank you.

Susie said...

I love this idea. I'm thinking of using either dark aquarium rocks or the glass marbles you put in vases (also dark). I suppose it would also look stunning with black tiles against white rock. Stunning!

Kellie May said...

Thank you Molly, for presenting your way of experiencing "one stroke at a time". I never quite got the spirit of Zentangle the way I should, until now. Wow! I finally get it! Now that I understand this better, I will have a go at one of Molly's tangles, keeping in mind that it's not about the previous nor future stroke, it's about NOW. I love both vase ideas. I am in Louisiana, by the way, where peppers are a common decoration this time of year through Mardi Gras. I want to make one with wild rice...another Louisiana favorite. (My friends will be envious.) Thank you!

Antonine Koval said...

What a wonderful reminder for a somewhat homesick Chicago girl living in beautiful Arizona that not all expressions of Holiday cheer involve snowflakes and cold winter charms. I can "be" right where I am! Thank you for this!

JJ said...

One of the hardest things for me sometimes! Thanks for the reminder!

Sue Zanker said...

I am saving all your 12 days of Christmas.......maybe you realise it or not, but you need to look at putting together all these little ideas into a book, and most important the words you have been including, wise without being preachy ! Think about it. I am going make up a little book for myself with just the key phrases I need to remind myself......each day I wait for your next little "pearler" (which is an Australian-ism which means in essence, "you little beauty!" can be referred to things, people, a view, just about anything.......

lishamarie said...

Being present is something my hubby and I do for each other, everyday we've made the dinner table and dinner time the no phone zone.
We listen to each ores day and make comments about the news we've read. We chat, eat and relax. I think people need to be in the moment even if it's for 30 minutes to let the person know that you love them care about them and still want to be present with them.

elianna987 said...

Thank you for another wonderful idea for bijou tiles and a graceful gentle reminder to be present.
Blessings,
Debbie Butterfield

Mamie P. said...

Thank you, Miss Molly, for this timely reminder from Bijou. I really like this presentation.

Anne's tangle blog said...

That's one of the beauties of Zentangle, being in the moment when tangling. I love the vase!

Taz42 said...

I am not always "in the moment" but when I make the connection I can achieve anything. Thank you for these words of wisdom.

Quwatha Valentine said...

In this moment I love the red peppers, the elf and Bijou!

Paula (PEP) said...

This made me smile so much - not only the sentiment behind the post but your staging of the tile with your little helpful elf, he's such a character.
Paula (PEP)

Lynn Jarrett said...

I think this craft is the most simplest so far, and rightfully so, when you are talking about "being." So many people have no idea what being in the moment is all about. They are not comfortable with themselves and the wonderful silence created when you are in the moment. It seems as though the rest of the world dissolves away. I too have experienced it on occasion when I have been working on a Zentangle project. I will all of a sudden realize that 30 minutes have passed and I had absolutely no clue. What bliss!!

Megan Hitchens said...

Thank you, Molly. I really needed this. I try to be present, but some days it is so hard, particularly when mistakes from the past rear their heads and fill my mind. I need this reminder (and I need to get back to tangling). Thank you. This means so much.

luvhymns said...

What a grande idea, tiling to recharge.

webster@nventure.com said...

wow . . . another grand idea.

Sue Sharp said...

I've had an "aha" moment with this lovely post! If I thought about it at all, I guess I considered the process of tangling as something that usually focuses me, and helps me let go of the other things on my to do list. Something that calms and fulfills me in the moment. What I hadn't considered was that it RECHARGED me. The "aha" part is that I now realize that when I'm done a tangling moment or session, I ALWAYS seem to have more energy, feel more confident, and get more of those things on my to do list done in a more efficient manner. Another RECHARGED "aha" is that the more I practice Zentangle, the more i enjoy and find inspiration from others, and what's going on around me. So thank you for the insight to seeing Zentangle as more than just in the moment but also as a Recharge! In hindsight it seems it should have been obvious, but to me it wasn't...

Dawn Price said...

I love the red of those red hot peppers!

Barb R. said...

A lovely, lovely post, Molly. Such a great reminder about living in the moment. It's what I love so much about the zentangle method.

laurasalas said...

Yes! This is what I struggle with most and strive for most!

Terri Young said...

For our 2016 Journal I chose BE as my word for the year. It all makes so much sense and Zentangle really brings it all home. Bless all.

Ellen said...

So true. At the moment I find it difficult to draw, because my head has other things it's focussing on. And that's ok too. Love the idea of the vase. Thank you for sharing

Anonymous said...

I agree ! Jackie S

Ginny Stiles said...

The red and green of the peppers is perfect for the holiday!
And along with staying in the present, I think also learning to "listen" are the two most difficult lessons you have to learn.

Laura Carpenter said...

being present not always easy, thanks for the reminder ;-)

Lucy said...

Love this question as we approach the new year, "Time to do a little tangling to reset my clock!"
Thank you!

Promise said...

So many blessings and opportunities to be grateful! Thank you Bijou and ALL of the Zentangle community for these reminders!

MLGoosen said...

I
The jouney, not the destination is the essence of Zentangle. I teach these words, and try to live this mantra. This is a positive reminder since when I book classes, I've been known to forget my own words, and get over extended. Thank you for my best ever New Year resolution! MLGoosen

Sarah Hluchy said...

Love today's bijou-ism! This is what I want to do, to live such a life so that I don't have to worry about the future in the first place. Zentangle also helps me stay in the moment. When I'm feeling stressed or over-stimulated and then start tangling, I'm able to observe my emotions and without being unduly affected by them. I'm able to ruminate on the situation at hand, if need be, without assigning an emotion to it. If there was no known cause, or if there were nothing I could do about the cause of the episode, then Zentangle serves as a dizteaction, allowing me to let the episode pass naturally without making it worse.

1 Art Lady Kate, Tangles and More said...

I think that it is always a good to remember to just be in the moment and be present. I am reminded of that every time that I visit my husband in memory care. Just be in the moment and enjoy the smallest of things. I love the vase idea too. Kate Ahrens CZT IX

Jean Chaney said...

Very wise words! I think this is just beautiful and yet has a spark of whimsy. Thank you for sharing!

brenda shaver shahin said...

Love this idea with the glass and the dried rice. So unique! Zentangle has definitely brought me to the "present" more than anything in my whole life has! Thanks! Love all the Bijouisms! I think our little Bijou is brilliant!

charchick said...

I love how doing Zentangle does help me be present in the moment. It's helped me center my scattered thoughts, and to just do something for me, even if just for a few minutes. :)

Dana Jones said...

I broke up with my last boyfriend because he couldn't live in the "now". He always wanted to argue over what happened last week, last month, last year! Since I found Zentangle, I am even more in tune with what is presently happening. I wish I could expose him to the life - changing experience that this "art therapy" has been for me.

Dana Jones said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gerri Hanus said...

Love getting new ideas for where to add tangles whenever I read one of your blog posts. <3

Mary B. said...

Living in the present is something I strive to do every day. When doing a tangle, I'm focused on what I'm doing right then and not thinking of anything else. Love the vase idea, too.

twin410 said...

We have to Be Present to relax, enjoy, cherish and love what you
are doing. (IT also helps to Be Present when chili peppers are around!!)

Holly Moseley said...

Great thoughts, Molly! I've been trying to live this way for a while now. And teach others the gifts that come with presence.

JAMIE HERRON said...

Thank you for all this inspiration!!!!