â€œIf you have one hour of air and many hours to go, you must breathe slowly.â€ --Mark Nepo
My One Little Word (www.aliedwards.com) for the year is TRANSMOGRIFY.
I don't swap often, so I try and send swaps that are personalized and, hopefully, special. Your package is genuinely anticipated but I understand life happens so please, just message me if you need to be late. I much prefer lateness to a hastily put together package. Extras and destashing are wasted on me unless you are certain I will love the item. See whitespace above.
Themes I enjoy: soul, peace, nature, prayer, reflection, mindfulness, books, coffee, kindness, keep calm. If it's on Oprah's Super Soul Sunday I probably love it.
I am passionate about pocket scrapbooking/Project Life. Bold tip pens that are archival quality and acid-free, journal cards (NOT journals or notepads), flat archival acid-free stickers, shaped paperclips, washi tape and stamps (especially fill in the blank) are always fun. I use word stickers to make poems. Cards that speak to the themes I like are especially helpful. I don't mind repeats if they are so themed, especially anything soulful. I love to put gorgeous greeting cards in my spreads. Gold foil, metallics, bokeh and vellum consistently inspire me. I always love hearts.
Postcards of the above themes, Sorry, tourist cards aren't my thing. Art and architecture is good. Articles about art and the creative process are always inspiring.
I love Valentine's Day, Earth Day and Hanukkah! Hearts are appropriate year-round.
I would love, love, love a mixed CD. My taste is eclectic but I haven't sought out much new music since my first son was born. Folk, alternative rock and world are my favorite genres, but almost anything goes--the only Christian music I like would be Christmas carols, traditionals like Amazing Grace and medieval chanting. I love a playlist so I don't need to Shazam.
I love art and appreciate beauty. Design-wise, think retro industrial. Or flea market zen. I love vintage graphics and clean lines. Bamboo and steel. Orange, purple and blue-greens are my favorite colors, though I appreciate neutrals and rainbows. Cutesy animals, pastels, neons and dull colors are NOT appealing. Flower images are not my thing, though I love real ones.
Free packaged health and beauty samples from your local natural foods store are always welcome. Our Whole Foods has a basket of them.
Edibles, consumables or something creatively ephemeral. Prayers and meditations are always good. You could read an oracle for me, or plan a trip, or send me on an inspirational field trip. Be experimental!
Clever or funny bookmarks from your library or bookstore are fine, but please no hand-crafted ones (unless you buy or sell them, of course).
Oh, did you ask about address labels? Why yes, sure, please!
I love going on day or weekend trips but find planning onerous. Go ahead, send me an itinerary complete with toddler-friendly pit stops. I'll send you back a report or postcard if you'd like. I am trying to get to the beach roughly once a week this year. Make a plan for any beach in southern California.
Trust your intuition. If there is something you think I would enjoy, I'm open to new discoveries. If you can find a way to send a non-material item in the mail, go for it! I would hate for you to feel stressed, so just message me if your are at a loss. Your creativity, thoughtfulness and loving-kindness are most-appreciated.
Loves and Inspirations:
Starbucks Flat White latte
Ali Edwards story kit
Staples price matching Amazon
free Pokemon tournaments
minty dental floss
I read a lot of paranormal fiction, usually before bed. I have usually read the bigwigs (Laurell K. Hamilton, Charlaine Harris, Kim Harrison, Kelly Armstrong,Thea Harrison, Vicki Pettersen, etc.) but I love short story collections to discover new writers. If my library doesn't have it, I probably have not read it (www.ocpl.org).
I enjoy reading about creativity and the artistic process, especially writing. I love art and creativity books for children (Rip This Page, Charley Harper coloring book, Pocket doodles). I read to be inspired and transformed. Intriguing self-improvement or interfaith/Buddhist/Jewish texts are fun, as are travel writing or unique (not outdated) travel guides. I like unusual memoirs, too. I especially love accounts of how people devoted themselves to a project for a time, like a living art piece (Happiness Project, One Good Deed).
I would love to read the magazines Green Parent from the UK and Real Living from Australia. I'd happily do a trade for US magazines. I love magazines and would subscribe to Shambala Sun, Mindfulness, Writer's Digest, etc. but my husband and I agreed to a moratorium on subscriptions until we get the magazine clutter under control. Still working on it, sigh. I'm allowed to read a magazine if it arrives in the mail.
I prefer foods closer to nature than not. Sugar, eggs, butter--these are divine. My dislikes are below.
I absolutely adore chocolate, especially if it's all natural (no artificial colors or flavors, chocolate doesn't need them anyway). I don't usually like fruity chocolates but I have learned to eat chocolate with nuts. Or maybe I've learned that I prefer to eat nuts with chocolate.
I love hot chocolate if you can find a natural packet.
I drink mostly coffee (unflavored and always caffeinated!). Keurig cups are fine. I use them so rarely I am in denial about their environmental impact.
I almost always drink coffee but for an occasional tea: strong blacks, especially chai, sometimes green, and the once in a blue moon herbal at night. Prefer caffeinated, never decaf (blacks and greens). I have quite a stash already that I never seem to get to since I go for the coffee. Dislike licorice, fennel, and anise. Again, no artificial flavors, please. No white, roobios, pueh or mate. Brandwise, if this is helpful, I consistently enjoy Tazo, Mighty Leaf, Forte, Dilmah, Twinings. Revolution, and Two Leaves and A Bud.
I am a foodie, so if you love it, I'll try it.
I am highly allergic to artificial sweeteners and artificial scents. I can get a headache from fragrance even before the box is opened. Mold and mildew smells do the same. Essential oils are lovely but anything labeled fragrance or parfum is made with synthetic chemicals. Thank you for being extra attentive to this quality.
No artificial coloring please. I avoid artificial flavoring as well.
I very much dislike licorice/fennel/anise.
I can tolerate super tiny amounts of caramel but it's really not my favorite. I don't like sticky sweets. Tootsie rolls are an example of something we would never eat.
Coconut (to eat). Love coconut miilk and Seven Layer bars-go figure.
Carob. Give me chocolate any day, but please, hold the carob.
Tea wise-I am just NOT a fan of Stash, Lipton, or Bigelow--they tend too be too weak for me as I prefer strong teas.
Although I drink mostly black and some green, an occasional herbal tea is fine. We NEVER drink decaf. Please, no unwrapped bags without messaging me first.
I do not collect ATCs.
Please, no hand made bookmarks. No journals, please. Unless they are the heavy duty scrapbook-y kind you can paint in. Journal prompts like conversation card packages are fine.
Again, I plead, no flimsy fabric reusable bags--they will go straight to the thrift store.
Cosmetics, perfumes, lotions, etc. If they are not all natural, I won't know what to do with them. See artificial scents above. If they are all natural, I'd love 'em!
I really, really dislike cutesy things, like animals in hats.
I don't like foam and vinyl and such. I try and be mindful about plastic. I love anything eco-conscious, fair trade, or organic. Reused, repurposed, recycled, or thrifted are all earth-loving, but please, please, please let me know if something is used.
Sad to have to say this, but anything dirty. I have enough trouble keeping up with my current messes and will not get around to an additional burden.
At risk of sounding ungrateful--I REALLY do not want foam or vinyl stickers, flimsy plastic items, confetti, cut up pieces of paper, or cutesy/girly items. They make me sad.
Zev is 12. He loves cartooning, reading cartoons and graphic novels. He collects "rare" coins (this means rare to him: like the 1976 quarter in my wallet or anything not from here, especially if it's gold-colored). He loves Pokemon cards and makes films of deck openings. He also makes animated Lego movies, so unusual figures or animals may become Youtube stars.
Caleb is 3 and loves dinosaurs. He calls himself Caleb Dinobuster after watching a Ghostbusters homage on Dino Dan. Superheros and horses are other loves. And stickers. I need to hide my postage stamps. He loves to cook, both real and pretend.
I love trees and rocks.
I only go to Papersource once in a blue moon because I love everything there and it's a true indulgence.
I love literary-oriented things.
Vintage typewriters catch my eye. Humor, edgy is fine. Or not. Who knew I had a favorite publisher? Drawn to many things from Chronicle books. I like bookish decks and cards with quotes. I'm trying to get to the Northern Lights. Anybody been to Tromso, Norway? Or Iceland? We just got a slow cooker and I need reliable recipes!
Education-wise, I am trained in Montessori and RIE. My BA was in Medieval History although I studied writing, dance and psychology as much as possible. I was a social worker and massage therapist before I had children. I lean toward attachment parenting. I am intrigued by all religions and have practiced many of them. I enjoy the vitality of authenticity and deep connection. Anything about contemplative traditions and practices is fascinating. My mid-life career goals are to host RIE-style, meditative playgroups and to pursue a career in spiritual direction and chaplaincy and, as always, to write. I have been writing posts for my blog for FOUR years and have yet to publish any. Hear ye, hear ye: 2015 is the year.
I do love shopping and thrifting and yard sales, I just try and be super, super mindful of what I bring home. It's so serious and seriously necessary that it has become a spiritual discipline. I must ask: Do I love it? Is it beautiful? Is it necessary? Will I use it? Three out of 4 yeses are required to bring it home. See whitespace craving.
Reusable Bags are a personal addiction. Sturdier is better, the plastic or, thicker canvas bags hold up best to repeated washings. I don't need any from the big chain stores we also have in California, thanks, but your local grocery store bags or a fun bag from your favorite hole-in-the-wall, would be fun. I frequent several different grocery stores and I never feel guilty when I bring in bags from grocery stores we don't have here. I generally don't like bags without words. Again, please, no thin, flimsy fabric bags.
I do needle-felting (wool roving! wool roving!) and am learning to knit and embroider. I can hand sew but would love a machine one day.
Anything from nature or made from natural materials for our nature table is fantabulous.
Carefully chosen and CLEAN previously loved items are welcomed (see recycling above). Just please, please, please, let me know if something is not new.
A note about who you are, what you love and why you chose to send what you did is always appreciated. It feels odd to me when stuff is just put in an envelope without explanation. Thank you!
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