Category Archives: Ephemera Almanac

{Ephemera Almanac Volume 14} Writing Resources

tell stories people want to read

As much as I love books as objects, I also love them because of the stories they tell. And perhaps the idea of story that I am most enamored with in the end.

This week has been a bit of a challenge, and I am giving a lot of thought about how I write the story of what my life means in my own head. The links I found along the way were a lot about writing and writing resources, as a result, in all its many forms.

Happy exploring…

  • Then I was pumped about writing in general and dug up the 15 best writing blogs and am dying to dive into all of them immediately. Look for more thoughts on these in future posts.
  • Dal - There is so much greatness in this week’s edition! I’ve bookmarked for later reading. Loving all the links, the NYT article is really interesting but also shows just how accessible it can be to making a creative living, though requires tenacity and hard work. And yay to hand lettering!ReplyCancel

  • Masha - I’m always drawn to writing and writing resources. Great post, thanks for the links.ReplyCancel

  • Claire - Yep. Totally bookmarked. And this week’s favourite name? Laken Nix!ReplyCancel

  • lola - So many links, so much reading to do (o.O) Loved the NYT article – refreshing to see how people other than the megastars of the creative world manage to make a living.ReplyCancel

  • Nichola - So much goodness to dive into here. Thanks for sharing!ReplyCancel

{Ephemera Almanac vol. 13} Meditation and Mindfulness in Hawaii


meditation and mindfulness

photo credit: barrymcw.

This week, we’re returning to the woo-woo. It seems that everyone enjoyed that previous woo-woo edition, so I’m going to share more resources for meditation and mindfulness this week on the Ephemera Almanac.

I’ve been very lucky to spend this week in Hawaii on the Big Island with my family and found this beautiful spot for my morning meditation, just a few minutes’ walk from where we’re staying.

Every time I get away from my everyday routine, it gives me an opportunity to re-evaluate how I spend my time and live my life. I love the chance to fine tune my personal practices.

Here are some treats for you as you assess these aspects of life as well.

  • In my mid-twenties, I left psychotherapy as my profession and went to Spirit Rock for a silent retreat to mark the transition. It was a wild ride- my mind was anything but quiet, I assure you. The experience taught me so much and to this day my practice is a hybrid of zen and vipassana.
  • Later, I added mantra practice to meditation. I use this mala, which I love so much. I have worked with several mantras, but this is the one I am most pulled toward at the moment. Youtube is a surprisingly helpful source for mantras, as you get practice through repetition and the correct pronunciation. Just search for the mantra you want to work with in YouTube and keep clicking until you find a voice and orchestration you enjoy.
  • One of the best things I did for myself this past year was to take this course with Susannah Conway, The Sacred Alone. It’s starting up again in a couple of weeks and if you want to build a meditation practice, I highly recommend it as a great starting point.
  • If all these practices and resources feel overwhelming, start with just 5 minutes a day. That’s as much as I can do at home in my regular life a lot of the time and it still makes a difference.
  • And finally, following a Buddhist philosophy doesn’t mean you have to purge all your emotions. Here’s why it’s important to allow anger in a healthy spiritual life.

And now, back to my regularly scheduled swimming and reading. A whole stack of reviews to come… Im about to start my 4th book of the week… am hoping to get through five by the time we’re home…


  • Emily - I love this post! Love the spot you found to sit, it looks beautiful.
    One of the books I’m currently reading is on neuroplasticity and I’m pretty excited to uncover how my brain will have changed once I have been meditating for ten years.ReplyCancel

    • caroline - Thanks, Emily! What’s the neuroplasticity book? I love that sort of thing… And yes, I’ve been meditating about that long as well but not as regularly as I do now. I’d love to know the impact it’s had as well.ReplyCancel

      • Emily - It’s called The Brain That Changes Itself by Norman Doidge. Such a fascinating read!ReplyCancel

[Epehemera Almanac vol. 12] Secrets and Escapes

secrets and escapes ephemera almanac


This is Oskar, our middle kitty. He has just turned 8 and was becoming too boisterous for our 16-year-old kitty. So we got him a little kitten friend. Great idea, right? Someone more age appropriate to play and run around with? Wrong.

Oskar spent the first two weeks we had Hugo hidden in our towel closet in the bathroom with his head against the wall, groaning. How could you do this to me?

Now, after a month, he seems to be returning to the fold, even playing with Hugo a little bit. But when he was worn down by yesterday, he turned to a book for support. I must say, I couldn’t help but feel a little proud of this choice.

This week, the links seem to gather around secrets and escapes:

[Ephemera Almanac vol. 11] Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride edition.

Mr. Toad's wild ride



Holy moly, it’s Sunday already. What with jury duty kidnapping my Tuesday, I felt like Wednesday was a whole new Monday. So here we are, on a kooky schedule.

And in honor of this upheaval, I have a group of links that will promote transformation and bold new adventures.

  • Another blogging friend and poet, Claire Mann, made a pilgrimage to the Bronte sisters home. I am dying to go there now. These photographs make me want to hole up somewhere and write my butt off.
  • I know I talked about it earlier this week, but Fluent Forever is still seriously rocking my world. I want all the languages immediately.
  • Susan Cain, author of the excellent book, Quiet, has started a site for introverts. I am loving it, especially this knockout post by a teen who describes how the book helped her accept herself.

Happy Sunday!

  • Giusy - I can’t get enough about your posts Caroline! This is a gem, i will definitely check the Fluent Forever website, the author looks also awesome! Xoxo, GiusyReplyCancel

  • Claire - It’s quite mind blowing the level of self acceptance Daisy has as an introvert and HSP at just 17. I’m 39 and the impact these characteristics have had on my life is just dawning on me! So glad you enjoyed the Brontë post now they were HSPs and introverts of great magnitude! They definitely make me feel that I’m in GREAT company.ReplyCancel

    • caroline - I had the same thought- I can’t imagine how savvy she’ll be by the time she’s our age… and yes, the Brontes are a great inspiration for sure. 🙂ReplyCancel

[Ephemera Almanac vol. 10] Make Your Nerd Heart Sing

ephemera almanac

Welcome back for another jam-packed issue of the ephemera almanac. I’m excited to see we’ve reached number 10! Thanks for all your comments and support. If there’s something you’d like to see here, please do let me know via email or in the comments.

Here’s the roundup of treats for this Thursday:

Happy Thursday everyone! What have you seen on the web that made your nerd heart sing this week? Please do share- I love to know what you’re all reading…


  • Claire - Well, in reading the list of cookery books and coming across ‘Every Grain of Rice’ by Fuchsia Dunlop – all I could think was Fuchsia Dunlop? Why don’t I have a name like Fuchsia Dunlop!
    As for links that make my nerd heart sing, I just never do the surfing and searching for myself so I appreciate these weekly round ups that you and other talented magpies put together 🙂ReplyCancel

    • caroline - Fuchsia Dunlop is an outstanding name. Perhaps she has some excellent links to share as well. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Nichola - Thanks for sharing! I can’t resist a book recommendation & love discovering new blogs.

    Love Austin Kleon’s work too, “Let go of the thing that you’re trying to be (the noun), and focus on the actual work you need to be doing (the verb).” Brilliant :).ReplyCancel

    • caroline - You are so welcome! Austin Kleon is great. I love that line as well- I think I am going to try to organize all my projects around it for the foreseeable future. It’s a bit like Rilke’s living the questions, in a way. Definitely nother one of my favorites.ReplyCancel