What Inspires Me To Create on Live In Color Blog

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Me and our daughter Nai

I miss sharing in this space with you all. There are moments though, when we need time away to bring us back. We must sit with ourselves and rediscover what ignites the soul. I certainly do not ever want this blog to feel like a job. Creativity is my oxygen; it sustains me, nourishes me in a way I cannot explain fully…

Photo Credit: Frank McKenna

As a little girl, I fell madly in love with words (poetry, books  and songwriting) and visual art (painting, sketching, and later photography). Often my younger brother Dave and I acted out plays we wrote, perched in our treehouse.

We were constructing new worlds with ever growing imaginations. Growing up in Baltimore meant surviving, but our parents always ensured we embraced possibilities. We understood there were experiences beyond our neighborhood.

Photo from my photo series – Baltimore: Sorrow, Promise & Hope | Emelda De Coteau, Live In Color blog

Photo from my photo series – Baltimore: Sorrow, Promise & Hope | Emelda De Coteau, Live In Color blog
Perhaps it’s why creativity never left me, even years later, when I found myself in the 9-5 grind. I felt deeply that actively creating held liberation. Inspiration for me abounds, sitting within the sounds of nature, hearing laughter from our little one, Nai, artistic culture, and the endurance of the human spirit.

Photo Credit: Emelda De Coteau
Live In Color Blog
On a brisk Saturday morning in January of 2010, I started Live In Color blog, and, like my life, it’s taken shape and grown over the years. Initially I simply sought to inspire others and share my spiritual journey.

I now feel called to not only blog, but cultivate a community which empowers women in three core areas: faith, activism and inspiration / motivation. I want you to not only exist, but live in color!

P.S.

Wednesday I’ll share where else you can read my words online…

What inspires you to create? Tell me in the comments below! 

Cultivating Creativity When You’re a Mom

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Photo Credit: Emelda De Coteau

Anyone with small kiddos knows you can barely pee in peace most days, let alone create! Ha! It’s tough. This business of being someone’s Mom and wanting a piece of freedom for yourself. How dare you?

When I think back to my pre-kid life and time management, I just laugh. Some days moments seemed to slip away.  In actuality, I amassed an abundance of hours and minutes.  The key to unlocking them? Recognizing those windows to create.

Now I am a productivity ninja! Pockets of free time become blog posts or photographs (sandwiched in between chores & homeschooling Nai of course). Last Sunday, I won the Mama lottery –  a few hours to myself.  I pushed beyond a desire to curl up in the bed with Netflix, and instead chose a long nature walk and photography.

Breathing in natural beauty transforms us and it’s absolutely essential to self care. When I produce  something – poetry, photography, an essay, blog post or article – there is an overwhelming sense of liberation afterwards.

It’s so easy to lose our identities as Mamas. But rebelling against convention, and making it a priority to create moves us into a broader purpose – beyond ourselves, our kids, and instead, extends these gifts to the world. As much as I love our daughter, I cannot allow parenting to swallow my identity – and neither can you. Seize those sporadic minutes here and there, and make something lovely.

What do you create? How do you make time in your busy life to keep going?

Photo Credit: Emelda De Coteau

 

Photo Credit: Emelda De Coteau
Photo Credit: Emelda De Coteau
Photo Credit: Emelda De Coteau

 

Photo Credit: Emelda De Coteau
Photo Credit: Emelda De Coteau

 

Two Life Lessons from my Toddler

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Naima De Coteau Photo Credit: Emelda De Coteau
Naima De Coteau
Photo Credit: Emelda De Coteau
Naima is an avid explorer. Even in the womb, this girl moved with agile determination. She enjoys a good swing or sliding board as much as the next toddler, but also likes walking through the park, picking up flowers, digging for rocks and climbing into trees.

A few weeks ago she layed down in the grass, gazed toward the placid indigo sky and smiled. Not a tepid smile either; one filled with the kind of innocence we see in children, before the world has convinced them to hold fast to reality and stop dreaming  Her quiet exuberance is contagious.

Oh, what lessons she taught me in 2 minutes:

1. Stop expecting and start experiencing.

Hitting the park together does not mean staying on the swings, or sliding board, Mom. There is a world beyond what I “should do,” and I intend to embrace it.

What kind of lives would you and I lead if we turned away from the “should” syndrome? This tendency towards compartmentalizing expectations for our kids goes beyond them and impacts other areas of life, too.

How often are we frustrated because partners, friends, or family members defy our expectations, choosing a path we do not approve? It’s difficult, this pulling back, but there is freedom in releasing the need to control. Every day, I am learning this lesson.

2. Slow down, and enjoy.

We live in the era of multitasking on speed. Everyone, everywhere is busy, all the time. Between floods of emails and navigating social media, our minds move incessantly. Being still is a lost art. It’s not lazy, this desire for tranquility, I promise you all, those times heal us in numerous ways.

In those few moments, lying next to Naima, I absorbed the natural beauty of birds, their rhythmic songs. Oh what lovely sounds.

While my pre-kid life included random meditation (when I could sit still! Ha! ) and walks around the track, headphones were never far away. Reflecting back on those days,  I missed so much.

When you and I are open, the lessons come to us in many forms. These days, mine are often taught by our spirited three-year-old who is determined to help Mommy see life with different eyes.

What lessons do your kids teach you?