Category Archives: Joyful Things

Random things life has to offer that make me happy.

Joyful Things 25

dream catchers, Devon
These past few weeks have been hectic to say the least. My partner has been working away a lot and I’ve been juggling many different projects. Needless to say we are both very tired. We have just come back from a week away in Bulgaria which was nice however the moment we came back we were flooded with work and things that needed to be worked. I’m on the verge of completing my last TEFL training. I decided after the initial 140 hour teacher training I would do a couple of specialist modules to help me stand out to employers and future students so I’ve gone on to do the ‘Teach English Online’ course and I’m now working through the ‘Teach English to Young Learners’ course. Those two extra modules plus my training as a kids and teens yoga teacher should make me a strong candidate for applying for work abroad in schools. The general plan is to perhaps work full time as an English language teacher and maybe the school might ask me to also teach yoga to their kids in an after school club or for some P.E sessions. I’d also love to teach yoga & belly dance to locals in a studio space a couple of evenings a week and I’ll reserve one day a week to teaching English online and any earnings from that will go directly into savings. As you can see, a lot of thought has gone into this life changing plan which I hope will commence before Christmas this year.
I’ve also created a small batch of dream catchers to gift to friends and I’ll be creating a bigger batch soon so I can open an etsy shop and sell them. I’ve also just taught a co-facilitated yoga & belly dance workshop with my good friend Jodie who lead the yoga session first. It was a lot of hard work organizing this first one but it was a hit with our students. 11 out of 15 turned up and our feedback was glorious, the ladies can’t wait for the next one and are referring us to friends! Jodie is away in the Czech Republic until August now so when she gets back we plan to create a few more combined workshops in and around Plymouth and perhaps Totnes also, more information on yoga & belly dance will be posted soon. On top of all this I’m catching up with writing book and product reviews plus more interviews on this blog alongside a couple of articles for Bad Yogi Magazine and prose poems for other sites. Jon & I still have our garden to renovate and our window seat to complete. So lots going on and I feel like my head is spinning sometimes however I feel good, I’m in a happy place right now in my life because my wheel of fortune is turning slightly faster.
Speaking of happy things, here is my current ten Joyful Things to brighten your day!

Artist carves beautiful totem figurines using the Avocado stone.
Meghan Currie offers a new yoga video bundle, deliciously titled Honey on CodyApp.
Have you seen this enchanting Pythia Botanica Oracle deck?, Oh it’s gorgeous!
Comic illustrator creates hilarious sketches of women’s every day problems.
80 people form human chain to rescue a family drowning in a rip tide.
Funny list of things us Brits do that confuse Americans, like fridges in kitchens!
Illustrator remakes Disney characters happily ever after in our modern world.
I am currently reading The Clay Girl. This is a beautiful lyrical, magical realist novel.
Funny yet weird panoramic photo fails that look like something from a bizarre horror movie.
New favourite, magical yogi instagramer. I love her! She is so inspiring.

*Photo of me with my dream catchers taken by the lovely Jodie Hansen.

Joyful Things 24

book nerd travel problems

Cute steampunk styled illustrations of a girl and her pet Octopus.
Enchanting European Libraries captured in beautiful photos, a book lover’s dream!
These are gorgeously dark fairytale styled illustrations by Alexandra Dvornikova
This yogi, yoga teacher and artist is a new favourite of mine to follow, she’s amazing.
Very cute and perfectly round butted chinchillas! Their butts are so fluffy!
Here is the NYTimes top 52 places to visit in 2017.
This article about the wild feminine really makes me want to howl at the moon.
Here are some of the oldest colour photos, showing what society looked like 100 years ago.
I am currently reading this book about a girl born with wings, it’s a beautiful book.
Artist and his daughters create 3D paintings on glass, so lovely.

From the photo above you can see we are packing for Bulgaria, our coach leaves tomorrow at 4:30pm. We arrive at the airport in London around midnight and fly at 8am on Saturday (why such a long journey just to catch a flight? Well we live in the South West where there’s no such thing as airports or civilized things, much like Wales there is only sheep and Dartmoor ponies).

I actually quite enjoy this part of the trip because we purchase loads of snacks to take on the journey with us and it gives us plenty of time to engage in deep conversations (or sleep in strange places like the airport floor). The biggest problem I have with travel is choosing what books to take with me, this time we are only going to Bulgaria for a week and yet I have six books piled with my clothes, three of which are poetry books and rather slim, the other three are magical realist novels and rather chunky.

Even though this holiday is going to be a short one, I very much need the rest and so I am not even going to take my note book which is essentially my work book full of lists of things I need to work on. I don’t want to see it whilst I’m at my mom’s because if I do I’ll end up writing an article (for example) instead of simply winding down, doing yoga in nature and reading or writing for leisure. Which is another reason for the six books.

The weather here in the UK has been divine, we’ve had a beautiful heat wave and I’ve spent a good few afternoons sat in our back garden reading and soaking up the sun. Today the forecast is changing, dark clouds are whirling in and thunderstorms are predicted. This is actually perfect timing for us, whilst the UK experiences a very wet weather system, Bulgaria’s weather is glorious! So I can not wait to relax by the pool and take leisurely strolls in my summer dresses down the cobbled streets of Veliko Tarnovo.

Joyful Things 23

Alexandra DvornikovaImage source: Alexandra Dvornikova.

I’ve been writing a lot. So much so that I’m getting headaches and my sleep is restless. It’s OK though, I’m enjoying this time, I am feeling very wordy at the moment and I’ve purchased quite a few poetry books and novels to review on this blog, because why the hell not? I’d say Literature was probably my second favorite subject at school, beaten only slightly by Art since at the time I felt Art gave me more freedom and Literature has a tendency to be taught in a regimented way in schools.

Regardless, because of my love of both forms of expression I do enjoy fusing both together as mixed media pieces, I include text or script to my video installations and I’m currently creating an illustrated poetry book.
I, surprisingly didn’t like P.E at school, I was the pudgy kid nobody wanted on their team and yet here I am, a Belly Dancer and Kids Yoga teacher who enjoys reading books on Anatomy and Fitness Instructing but I also love creating workshops involving all four forms of expression I love dearly: Art, Dance, Poetry and Yoga.

I think, looking back I’ve always been a mixed media creative and this is probably why people misunderstand me, because I can’t be tucked neatly into one category and I’m not afraid to show my many facets either so I’m criticized a lot for just being me. but I feel pretty amazing from within right now, I feel at peace in discovering who I really am, I am enjoying this journey and that feels truly empowering and therefore the critics don’t affect me as much anymore.

But anyway, I have some book reviews and interviews to complete and publish before and during my trip to Bulgaria,and it looks like I’ll be carrying quite a few books with me. Oh! The problem with being a book nerd!
Here are ten Joyful Things for your viewing pleasure!

Florence and the Machine sings to a girl with bone cancer, in hospital.
An old farm in the mountains of Costa Rica was turned into a sanctuary for 900 dogs.
Just purchased The Clay Girl, it’s a magical realist novel. Super excited to read & review it.
We’re off to Bulgaria soon, check out these beautiful places we might visit.
Hilarious video of British men trying to get a bike of an electric fence.
Yummy, summery ice cream recipes up on Goop!
Interesting article about giving our emotions space so we can heal.
I LOVE Shakira’s new single, have you heard it? It has a lovely, summery vibe.
Clever recycling machine feeds stray dogs, this is a wonderful idea!
Ten must see Bookshops in the world according to the Guardian.

*Art work by Alexandra Dvornikova. She’s a Russian artist training to be an art therapist. I’ve just discovered her work and instantly fell in love. I adore how mystical and macabre her paintings are. Almost reminiscent of the old folkloric tales.

Joyful Things 22

eastern body, western mind book
Israeli artist creates funny & cute illustrations of every day life with his wife.
Youtuber book geek talks about all things books and she’s delightful to watch.
5 ways you are using magic when practicing yoga, there for you are a yoga witch or wizard.
A wonderful article about the dark realities of mermaids and their sexual power.
There was an amazing Thunderstorm in Plymouth, I’ve never seen a thunderstorm like it.
Meghan Currie released a beautiful piece of music called Le Grand Poem.
I’m treating myself to this surreal and mystical poetry book.
This young man hugs stray dogs and gives them the love they deserve, so touching.
This young woman creates mermaid tarot portraits, I think I might have a go at this myself!
This poetry magazine looks amazing, I may purchase a few copies to take to Bulgaria.

Apologies for neglecting this blog for a couple of weeks. Things have been pretty manic here for a short while with lots to plan and sort out. Jon, as you know is renovating the garden, he’s also started building the little book nook and seating area in our bedroom, we’re planning a week away to see my mum in Bulgaria for the end of June and I’ve been working more hours in my part time job whilst writing four articles to be published early this summer.
On top of that I’ve been attending my usual yoga classes, making time for yoga study, planning the yoga & Belly dance workshop and the Kiddo Yoga & art workshop (both happening in July) and also working on some new dream-catchers too. Jon has also been away with work a lot, a few weeks ago he spent two weeks in New York and last week he was in Paris and soon he’ll be off to Spain. It’s currently all go in the Roberts-Ness home and we are so looking forward to the restful week in Bulgaria, I’ll be packing quite a few poetry books to read by the pool alongside ‘Eastern Body, Western Mind’ which is a phenomenal book about the Chakras and placing them in a Western context, exploring Jungian psychology, childhood development and body somatics; it’s truly ground-breaking ideas! And I’ll be taking my little note book too as I have plentiful prose poems swimming about in my mind lately which is great for my illustrated poetry book I hope to publish one day and I do still fancy having a go at performing at a spoken word poetry event in the near future.

So things for readers to look forward to in later blog posts include: New Dream-Catchers, New illustrated poems, my usual yoga updates, Interviewing inspirational people (new addition to the blog), published articles & poems, my Bulgaria travels and Jon’s renovation projects!
Have patience with me, lots of delicious things are coming!

*Photo of Eastern Body, Western Mind and Jon in the background building the book nook/window seat, buy the book here.

Joyful Things 21

Yin Yoga, Sacred Dance, Sacred Women
Spout the Wonder Pup tries to play with his Yogi Mum.
Very cute Acro-Yoga Proposal, I love the woman’s reaction.
Sailaway Dress company have brand new home decor products, playsuits & day dresses, Woop!
I love this Belly Dancer, her name is Zoe Jakes, I love scrolling through her instagram.
I still really want these Oracle cards, may treat myself next month.
This poetry book looks beautiful and interesting, it’s a poetic response to mental health.
Found this Belly Dance Teaching manual, again something to purchase very soon methinks!
Fancy living a nomadic lifestyle? This couple living in a van are very inspiring.
I’m switching to using Bamboo toothbrushes & hair brushes to reduce my effect on the planet.
This & This Yogi Tea mug sets are super cute, I’ve been looking for a new mug.

Today I am just relaxing by myself after a long week of work and yoga, Jon flies back to the UK today from being in New York for 2 weeks, he’ll be in Plymouth later in the afternoon. I’ve been studying this Yin Yoga book tremendously as I think in the distant future  I’d like to specialize as a Yin yoga teacher (when I can find the funds!) but I think my approach might be slightly different to the traditional ideas of Yin and I’d love to incorporate Yang like Sun salutations as warm-ups to a belly dance lesson and maybe a short Yin cool down with a meditation to end? Who knows? I’m also studying ‘Sacred Women, Sacred Dance’ to freshen my knowledge of ancient and folkloric dances in the world in preparation for teaching my up and coming workshops and I’ve been asked to teach belly dance at a Yoga festival in Newquay, happening in September, this is totally for free as it’s a brand new festival and I’m happy to be a part of it all. I am in a really good place right now in my life, lots of things are brewing, although aspects to my life are far from perfect, it is the first time in a long time I am content within myself and where I am going, and it’s a beautiful feeling.