Weekly Photo Challenge: Silhouette

Sorry this one’s late, folks. I’ve been looking for inspiration. I hope these do it for you :-)..

Where would we be without those that move in sync with us? (Photo courtesy of http://www.smashingapps.com)

This one forms a lump in my throat… love it…my heart will go on.

I started Choi Kwang Do about 9 months ago so this appeals to me (photo courtesy of http://vanimg.s3.amazonaws.com)

I write because I have to

I fell in love with solitude twice.

Photo Credit: Girl Mogul

The first time must have been before the age of 10 – I don’t remember exactly but I know that by my teenage years, I relished being alone. It was an odd thing for a natural extrovert like me. I found myself looking for those moments where I could hear my own thoughts.

By the time I was 14, the thoughts had turned to words, words that needed to be put on a page.

Then I started writing poetry. That was it – I was head over heels with writing – and the solitude it required. The compulsion to write was at times overwhelming. Sometimes, I ignored it, deeming it a “weakness”, a flaw that made me appear soft and sensitive. This and many other things meant I stopped writing poetry. But I never really stopped writing. It manifested in letters to friends, emails and even little ‘sorry-I-missed-you-while-you-were-out’ notes. My friends thought I had a way with words.

Life is the busiest it’s ever been and solitude is rare and precious.

Photo Credit: Gotham Girl Chronicles

I have found that I can’t hear my thoughts as often as I’d like. I can’t express words as clearly as I used to. Solitude eludes me. But I still write. This time, solitude is a former lover that I never really stopped loving – one that only needs to meet my eye and I’ll come running back. So perhaps, I fell in love with solitude once. Maybe one day, he’ll come back to me, the noise will quiet down and I will hear the words coming from over my shoulder.

To the boy I love…

on his 6th birthday:

My handsome boy's got attitude. Like!

I want you to know that you are so very special. You touch the heart of everyone you meet. You are confident, thoughtful and funny. You put others before yourself. Please continue to do this even when it is hard. Also treat yourself well.

I see parts of me in you. Like your desire to please others at the detriment of your happiness and even safety! I remember when you came home from school without your gloves one winter’s day. I asked about your gloves and you said you gave it to a boy who didn’t have a pair. “He was freezing, mummy!” you said with complete innocence in your eyes. I smiled at you although I really wanted to cry. 

Be proud of who you are but respect others who are not like you. You are a beautiful boy and I hope that life treats you fine – that people love you as much as you love them.

I love you and happy birthday, my dear.
Love always,
Mum xx

To the task mistress with love.

Abraham Lincoln, the sixteenth President of th...

Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States of America (Image via Wikipedia)

I wrote a letter to myself this week. I plan to read it next year. It has a kinder tone than I expected. A year ago, It would have been a much harsher, irritated tone. I wrote the letter following my post, The luxury of being average and after listening to a TED talk by the historian, Doris Kearns Goodwin. She spoke about the lives of  two past US presidents: Abraham Lincoln and Lyndon Johnson. You can find the video of her talk here. I understood that I have been imbalance between three realms: work, love and play. Especially play. As you will see from the video, Lincoln appears to have found this balance leading to a fulfilling legency, while Johnson did not. Doris is a great storyteller, a skill I always admire.

In the letter, I tell myself that I’m good-natured, clever and fun to be around. I remind myself of how blessed I am to be alive, healthy and surrounded with the goodness of love. I also try to persuade myself to be less judgemental of my failings and to aspire equally for play and love as I do for achievement (work).

Maybe the older I get, the wiser I’ll be about these things. I’m glad I got to write this letter although I feel some sadness that I hadn’t written it before. Or perhaps someone else should have looked out for me and told me these things a long time ago. Well, maybe somebody did. I was probably too busy beating myself to death about the small things. I’m pleased that I’ve finally arrived in this place. Thanks for reading :).

A special thanks to Kaushic Kalyanaraman who inspired me by sending the TED video to me.

“Te Amo” means I love you- Giving warmth to the children of Peru (Part 2)

“I interviewed Alison Mcquillin a week ago. The first part of the interview describes how Te Amo came to be. The second part below describes what her vision is for the International outreach. Although Alison is clearly modest in her aspirations, it is glaring that Te Amo is a tremendous blessing and that the effect of that blessing will remain for generations to come….”

—-INTERVIEW Cont’d—-

Kemi. What does it feel like to be able to provide this gift to those kids?

Alison. Providing the simple gift of a jumper stirs up so many feelings! It breaks my heart that children suffer in this way, but it also fires and slightly angers me that this is the case. Honestly, I wish that there was more that I could do, I just want to give each of them the biggest hug and tell them that it’ll all be ok.  But the thought of them wearing the little jumpers gives me peace that these vulnerable children will experience love.

Kemi. How long has Te Amo existed? Where do you see Te Amo going in the next few years?

Alison. Project Te Amo has only been going since February but I hope that it will continue as a form of outreach at City Church. We hope to expand to other parts of Peru, for example the mountain children in Cusco as well as other countries in South America. Next stop, the World!

Kemi. How can folks get involved? Do they need any special skills?

Alison. Anyone can get involved from novice knitters to those who could do it standing on their heads with their eyes closed! Any willing volunteers can get in touch with myself, Kathleen or James Gregory. Kathleen or myself will set you up with a very simple pattern as well as wool and needles if you need. We have just been donated a whole load of wool and need more keen knitters to pick up those needles! If you really can’t/won’t knit but would like to help out, we will be sending the jumpers out this summer and would be extremely grateful for donations towards postage!

Kemi. What is your one wish for those kids?

Alison. Above all else, I wish the children to be safe. Safe from having to sleep alone in dark alleys; safe from crime; safe from drug addictions; safe from fear.

Kemi. Do you believe your kindness will change their lives? How?

Alison. Almost all of the children living rough have been forced in some way or another to abandon their homes with parents, brothers and sisters and fend for themselves. Most of them have lost their childhoods by becoming glue sniffers, beggars, prostitutes…and now associate adults with pain and fear. I hope that Te Amo will remind them that there are people in the world that see them and want to show that they care. I may never know the impact that the jumpers will have on the lives of the children that will wear them, but I would like to think that they will believe the message that will be stitched to the collar of each one…te amo.



I'm halfway through the front of a jumper. Yaay!


I’m one of 15 knitters that will bless the life of a child with a beautiful jumper. I’m making space in my schedule to do this because I believe in children all over the world. I’m making progress as you can see above. Hopefully, I will get it all done by July when it gets sent off to Peru. So exciting!!

Thanks for reading about Te Amo- it is close to my heart- Muaaah! 🙂

Project Te Amo can also be found on Twitter –

@ProjTeAmo or on Facebook.
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