Lucky you, Murphy

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In this cold, cold tundra (though today I was informed, “it’s only chilly, wait until winter…”) every bit of colour and positivity counts. I have yet to encounter a blizzard, a long power-out, or the days with 20 hours of darkness, but it won’t be long. I’m working to forge friendships and build personal strength that will get me through the winter.

In my last post featuring positive graffiti, I featured a local artist and someone (unknown) who had changed F*** the police to Hug the police. I found some more today on a photo walk that made me smile and that I wanted to share with you.

Murphy’s law is something that you come to expect and anticipate here. Staff shortages, unpredictable weather, losing your internet if the wind is too strong or it rains. I really like the graffiti I found that says “Lucky you Murphy” because Murphy’s law never leaves you feeling lucky. Things go wrong up here, and you just have to deal with it and keep going. I hope you enjoy these pictures and that you remember that you can get through whatever is going on in your life right now.

If you are clever, you can probably see what the word graffiti used to say before it was changed to something more positive.

“I wish you didn’t have to fly away”

posgraf1

“Shucks, you’re #1”

posgraf5

“Lucky you, Murphy”

posgraf4

“Cook’n peachy” – on a second glance, I realized this probably says “Look’n peachy” … guess I had food on the brain.

posgraf2

“<3”

posgraf3

“you kno you luff it”

posgraf6

Thanks for reading! Follow me elsewhere…

YouTube channel 

Instagram (@jessihannahjay)

When I Grow Up

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The plan was always to become a writer and an artist. 

I am reminded of this as my nephew who I nanny tells me his dreams for the future. The NHL, an olympic speed skater, American ninja warrior (even though we’re Canucks), NBA… and finally, an artist who sells his work.

chalkAs a nanny, my job description is diverse and ever-changing. My sister did a back to school photo shoot with her boys last week and I got to be the chalk artist for her.

So, technically, I got paid to make art. I didn’t sell anything but my time and talents were valued enough for her to ask me to do it for her. It was an a-ha! moment for me.

I want to keep doing the things I love always. Whether I am paid to do them or not. I must create; I must absorb and learn from other people’s creations; I must keep asking questions.

Now that I am working two jobs, my time to create is somewhat limited. But I try to play some music, do some drawing or writing and some reading every day. It keeps me sane and feeds my soul.

Today, I was off nanny duty, so I started my #radicalselflovebible.  It was great to just curl up in bed, put on an audio book (Harry Potter again, of course, what else?) and create something of importance to me.

I hope you hold on to the dreams of your youth and pursue them with gusto. And if you are having trouble finding what you want in life, hit the rewind button and look at what you spent time doing as a child. What did you want to be when you grew up? 

Thugs, Hugs & Dumpcano

Love, Style, Thoughts

Magical narwal!graf2I will always find graffiti intriguing. I have never done large-scale art, I have always been more at home with my nose in small sketch books at home and scrawling on paper napkins when eating out. Iqaluit has been great for the street art (not only graf, but there are also stone and metal sculptures everywhere). My brother in law’s friend was commissioned to do these murals. These ones pictured are on the side of the fire station, I have yet to photograph the very large mural near the hospital, though that is another one I must get some pictures of.

graf3This is one of my favourites. It’s completely magical and I just love it. The colours and concept are amazing.

graf1Some other non-commissioned street I’ve come across include “HUG the police” on the side of a shed, and “west coast Thug Life” on a shipping container. I could make a whole album of things I find in the tundra. One of the most interesting so far was that plastic boot. There is a lot of litter, I wish I had the time and resources to repurpose them into something cool. But they are fun to just come across when I’m running too.

Dumpcano, you ask? Our dump has its own Twitter account, because it’s on fire. It has been for months. I can read about the drama in the local newspaper. I have only really skimmed our newspaper, though that’s something I’d like to be more diligent with, in order to connect myself better to the community.

thugshugsdumpcanoLife in the North has thus far been an incredible thing. I feel healthier, happier, and more whole. I’ve met some first-class people at my job as a waitress. I can easily walk to work, the store, the library, the ocean. My runs through the tundra are challenging and breathtaking. My love bank is filled every day by three amazing little boys who want to draw and play and dance endlessly with me. I have stuck with my vegan lifestyle. The 6 weeks I’ve been here have flown by.

I’m feeling endlessly inspired by this new environment. I can’t wait to share more through blogging and YouTube!

Thanks for reading!

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/jessihall1
Health Blog: milesonmilesonmiles.wordpress.com
Instagram: @jessihannahjay

To See

Love, Thoughts

I remember the words of my art teacher in my first year of university. 

tosee

The landscape here in Iqaluit is amazing. The tundra rolls as far as you can see, lichen-covered rocks jutting out everywhere, explosions of purple arctic fireweed (which, I am going to try to make tea with!). 

I’m grateful for those words, and those lessons. Even more so since having aged and experienced a few more years in my life, progressed in my mental clarity… I feel like I see more. The light is a little brighter to me, the flowers more fluid and the changing terrain more enticing for exploration. Even the litter which can be found in crevices and nooks along the tundra is interesting for my eyes to cross. 

loveshadow

Outside my house, there is a lot of construction going on, as new houses are being built around ours. As it was Sunday today, there was nobody on the lot, and as I walked back from a little adventure on the tundra, I noticed this shadow on some of the heavy equipment. A heart shadow. 

Maybe most would walk right past it.

But my eyes are ready and my brain is receptive to everything. 

So what are you missing in your hurry, in your worry? We’re all in such a rush, that nothing is in focus. What opportunities have you missed because of an inability to recognize them as such?

What a gift it is to see, let’s make the most of it. 

To hear more about my move up to Baffin Island, check out my vlog about Moving to Northern Canada. 

peace, 

J.

Choosing Love

dreams, Love, Uncategorized

One of the biggest questions people try to answer is this: How can I be happy? 

My answer is this: do what excites you. Pursue your passions. Choose self-love and make time and space in your life for the things you love. 

Place yourself in the situations where you will get to practice your art (whatever it may be), spend time with the people you cherish, and surround yourself with individuals you admire and who make you better. 

Here are some of the things I love to do. 

I love to be behind the camera to capture every moment around me, so that in the future I can look back on happy times and places I have explored. 

camera

 

I love to make art. Drawing mainly, but any form is fun for me. 

drawing

I love to eat healthfully and make my food aesthetically pleasing and Instagram it all. (@jessihannahjay

food collage blog

 

I love to make music. Piano, guitar, singing, writing… This was on Main St. in Vancouver. 

Main Street Piano Collage

 

What would you do more of if you had the time? What activity or group of people makes you feel alive? What can you cut out to make room for what you love? 

The more you envision the life you desire, the more you practice things you like in every small choice throughout the day, the closer you will get to a life you love. 

 

Coming Attractions

Thoughts

Dear Neglected [but probably didn’t notice I left] Readers,

I have news.

I have contracted an infection. 

It occupies a lot of my time, it’s on my mind while I’m at work, and when I am going about my day.

Now, in light of Withdrawal, you might be thinking this bug I speak of, is the grammer bug….[begin rabbit trail] By the way, I have my phone back again. Somehow over a month after having lost it, a fellow student at my school tracked me down on Facebook and I was able to get my phone back and not have to replace it! I have been Instagramming to no end (delicious foods, pretty flowers and selfies of course), though that is not the point of this post, and this is not the thing which infects me. [end rabbit trail]

Creativity.

My impulse to create, my urge to bring newness into existence, to build upon what exists and to ask questions about what’s around me that no one else is asking. My desire to form and fabricate a life of beauty and meaning, to appreciate the aesthetic of simple things, to celebrate performing arts, to find new ways to love.

It has been overwhelming. It is like an infection, which itches, burns, screams for attention. It does not settle until it gets this attention.

So what to do? In reading a post on Gala Darling’s blog titled “Blog On, Babe: Get Organised!” I knew what I had to do. All the disorder of my mind had to be shaped into a plan. All the ideas had to be compiled and ordered, given a number in the line of the endless projects I wish to accomplish.

She suggested making a calendar out of a large post-it and writing down what day you will do what. It just so happens I have giant post-its, so this morning I let go of all excuses and sat down and made this 7 week calendar of blog posts and YouTube videos I will be making.

Also, in a book I am reading by Michelle Goodman, The Anti 9-5 Guide, she suggests carving out time several times a week to commit to your pet project on the side. Time to do the creative things you wish you were doing while you are sitting in your cube(or other less than thrilling day job location).

SO I DID IT. 

Screen shot 2013-06-05 at 1.11.24 PMThis took a good couple hours to make, what with the additional research and detail hunting. But it was worth every minute. I am so excited to follow this plan and be more consistent on my blog here(3-4 posts a week coming up!), and also finally start my YouTube channel.

So what’s coming up?

FILM: Reviews, actor and director features, my YouTube channel
ART: Artist features, gallery visits, my drawings, crafting
MUSIC: Favourite bands, artists, songs, covers on my YouTube channel
STYLE: Outfit of the day(OOTD), decor, DIY
LOVE: What I’ve learned about loving myself, things I love(& you should too), relationship talk

First up is a music post, and that’ll be coming up on my birthday! Check back this Saturday, June 8th! 

Peace & love kids,

-jessi hannah jay. 

Follow me on Twitter & Instagram @jessihannahjay