Contacting Me

You can always email me at karen@karenika.com. I love email.

Categories

Badge

http://www.karenika.com Click here for how to use.


This is a Moment of Deep Joy and Gratitude for me

This is a layout I made for My Mind’s Eye.

I’ve been experimenting with making pages that are 2 6x12s where one side is all journaling. Here’s the journaling on this one:

My sweet boys,

As the two of you started growing up and learning new things, I had my own list of “what to teach the boys” which included items like reading, programming, art, writing, and math. I had many non-academic ideas, too. How to be kind, how to always say please and thank you. How to make sure you apologize if you hurt someone. To make sure you look them in the eye when apologizing. And how to say “I forgive you” when someone apologized to you. How to serve others and volunteer your time to the community.

My list was long and layered.

But I wasn’t worried about tackling it. I knew that, with time and patience, we’d make it through each item. I knew that I was capable of teaching those to you. I cared about the list and I was willing to take the time.

But then I had this other list.

The one full of the things I didn’t know how to do but wanted to make sure you learned.This list was much more challenging because, in this case, it wasn’t a matter of time or patience. Even if I had all the time in the world, I couldn’t tackle this list on my own. I didn’t know how to do these things.

While this list was layered and complicated, too, the very first item on the list was what most would consider easy: learn to ride a bike.

Learn to ride a bike.

As someone who never learned it, it was essential to me that my boys would learn to ride bikes at the typical ager most other kids learned. I wanted to make sure this was a part of their childhood experience.

Other people might think I was crazy to worry about this simple task so much, but, to me, teaching you how to ride a bike was a monumental task. How do you teach something to someone that you’ve never learned in the first place? Even though I had tried to learn a few times, I knew that there was no way I was going to master this in a way I needed to, so I could teach you two.

So I enlisted Daddy.

He’s an awesome biker and I told him that it was crucial to me that you boys learn. Daddy told me he’d take care of it.

And, take care of it, he did. He got you the bikes, the helmets, he spent the time and the effort. He ran alongside you for hours and held on and let go all at the right times. While I was vaguely aware it was progressing, it wasn’t until this weekend that I realized he had really come through all the way.

As I stepped outside to snap some photos of the two of you, I couldn’t believe my eyes. Nathaniel was able to ride all my himself, on the big boy bike with pedals and no training wheels. Yes, he still needed a bit of help occasionally, but he pretty much had it down. And David was a master-rider. Biking round and round without a care in the world.

I cannot tell you the joy that filled my heart. This is why I love Daddy so very much: he is the perfect complement to me and helps all my dreams come true. Thank you so much, Daddy, and I am so very proud of you my biking boys!

Remember This - Week 5

Here’s another one I made for My Mind’s Eye.

This page says: you are confined only by the walls you build yourself.

Ain’t that true?

I find that I often tend to think that there’s only one way forward. What I would like to remember instead is that there’s no one way. And that there’s no forward. Life is a winding path. What might look like “forward” might be a detour and what might look like a detour might be the real path to joy. Not that there’s only one path to joy. or success. or bliss. or whatever it is i am after that week.

Regardless of the notion of path or not, it is important for me to remember that I am free and not confined by anything except for the restrictions I am creating for myself. Being free and whole is a core desire for me. To feel whole, I need to remember to tear down the walls I create.

Here’s a photo that shows off all the shine in this page:


Remember This is a project for 2014. You can read more about it here.

Remember This - Week 4

This page says: What is it like for this person?

Yet another gem from Tara Brach.

There’s some journaling here too and it says:
Because we are conditioned to pull away from suffering, awakening a compassionate heart requires a sincere intention and a willingness to practice. It can be simple. As you move through your day and encounter different people, slow down enough to ask yourself a question. “What is life like for this person? What does this person most need?”

How is that for a reminder? I love this thought and I love how it’s serving me and others.

I am not a huge fan of how this page turned out; it’s messier than I’d like but I still love the sentiment and it’s something I need to remember. I want to remember.

In the end, that’s what matters most.


Remember This is a project for 2014. You can read more about it here.

Remember This - Week 3

This is another page I originally made for My Mind’s Eye. It says: the most important thing is to remember the most important thing.

Another quote from Tara Brach and one that I want to remember.

I actually wrote a longer blog post about this one a while back. When I was talking to my coach, I had this idea of a pie chart showing what I care most about if everything I care about could fit inside a circle, how big would each slice be?

So this is my visual. It’s a bit less like what I originally imagined but I still like it.

The sections I have are:

  • creating
  • health
  • read
  • friends
  • work
  • service
  • family

I think this one might be worth doing again at some point. I feel like the categories might be slightly different even now. OR maybe not.

Either way, for now, I still love this. It helps me keep things in perspective. It helps me remember to prioritize what matters most.


Remember This is a project for 2014. You can read more about it here.

Remember This - Week 2

It says: It did not happen to you or because of you. it just happened. remember it is real but not true.

This page was originally done for My Mind’s Eye. It uses mostly scrapbooking papers and paint.

This page came about as I was listening to a podcast with Tara Brach. She was talking about one time when she was working on her book, against a deadline, and the computer crashed before she was able to save the writing. She then talked about how we take it personally and think that something is happening to us. How we blow it all out of proportion and how we construct a big story around what happened and what it means.

I do this a lot.

I make it mean something about who I am. What I am worth. Or more like, not worth.

Since whole is one of my core desires this year, it’s really important to me to remember this one.

It just happened.

a few more shots:

 

 


Remember This is a project for 2014. You can read more about it here.

Savor the Gifts of the Present Moment

Since I will not get to write tonight either apparently, I figured I’ll share a recent layout with you. This one is almost all My Mind’s Eye and was made for the Big Picture Classes’ recent NSD Creative Crop.

My challenge was to use your own handwriting. When was the last time you used it on a layout?

Here are few different shots from it:

I Love My sweet amazing boys and their silly hats in every way

I noticed that it’s been a while since I shared any of my layouts with you. While I am doing a lot less scrapping lately, I am still making some pages and here’s a recent one I made for My Mind’s Eye.

journaling reads:
My boys like to be silly. They put hats on and make silly faces and laugh and laugh. Then can play one little hat for over twenty minutes. I don’t really understand how they can find so much joy and entertainment from such a small thing and yet they do. And I love that about them so much. How the smallest things can create joy in their lives. How they can entertain themselves and laugh and laugh. I love how easy it all is for them. It never was for me and I am so grateful that joy comes so easily to them and how happy they are. I love them so!!

details:

Gratitude Journal - Week 8

Here’s this week’s gratitudes and celebrations:

Before:

and here’s what the page looks like with all the gratitudes and celebrations:

There we go. Just another excuse to create art and remember the present that is my life.


Gratitude Journal is a weekly project for 2013. You can see a detailed post on my goal other details here.

Journey into Collage – Week 51

text reads: you are not bound by the labels others have put upon you. you are free. only you choose who you are. don’t forget. only you.


Journey into Collage is a project for 2012. You can read more about it here.

My wish for you: Make Love of Yourself Perfect

This is a layout I made for My Mind’s Eye.

And the journaling says:
If there’s only one thing you get to have or be, my wish is for you (and me) to know that all you need is already within. Deny yourself nothing. Give yourself inifinity and eternity and discover that you don’t need them, you are beyond. I love the the two of you with all my soul and I wish you endless peace and contentment. May you make love of yourself perfect.

details:

The greatest joy of life comes from the smallest moments

This is a layout I made for My Mind’s Eye.

And the journaling says:
One of the greatest joys of having kids is watching them delight in the smallest moments. Like when Nathaniel found this little toy bucket and sat in it. You thought it was the funniest thing my sweet boy. And when daddy pushed you around you laughed with so much joy (until it was David’s turn of course.) Seeing you two have the best time with the simplest things is a daily reminder to me that I should be grateful for the smallest things in my life, too. There are the moments when we cherish life. Thank you for reminding me what matters most. I am so deeply grateful for the two of you and I love you with all my heart.

details:

i am learning that being your mom means i have to be brave. thank you for teaching me so much

This is a layout I made for My Mind’s Eye.

And the journaling says:
This morning, we went to the park and there was this closed slide where I couldn’t see you slide down. You both loved it but it made me super anxious. What if you got stuck? How would I save you? Your daddy explained that part of being a mom is learning to let you do it and be brave. And that I had to be brave, too. It’s so hard not to protect you all the time. I love you so very much my sons.

details: