Tuesday, 9 September 2014


Anyone else been feeling a bit out of sorts lately?  Reflecting too deeply, thinking, over-thinking, analyzing - feeling anxious and overwhelmed for no certain reason whatsoever?   There may be an explanation, which may help you - as it's helped me understand what I was experiencing and why, and thus not looking at my immediate life as such for answers, but lifting my gaze upwards towards the brightly lit night skies....

I'm a bit of a novice in this area, so I asked my very talented and inspiring niece and great friend, Natasja Brand-Mason to write this piece which I felt I'd like to share with you all...  Natasja,  thank you so much for a very inspiring and informative and well written piece of information xx

Natasja says 'Before we start it is important to distinguish between the influences of the moon and astrological influences. There’s a lot of interesting information about how the different planetary bodies can affect our lives and behavior. We can also see the moon more as a giant amplifier.

I believe we are all affected by the cycles of the moon. The moon exerts a gravitational field on the Earth, therefore tides are affected by the moon. Our bodies are about 60% water, of which our brain is around 85%, so this is one of the reasons we are also affected by he moon. This influence can be very energizing. Science tries to disputes the effects, but I know that Portugal get their riot police out on the full moon due to the fact that a lot more people behave disorderly than at other times. The more sensitive the person, the more the effect can be.

It is also believed that the moon affects the cycles of women. A lot of women’s cycles get tuned into the moon cycle. This is not true for women that use oral contraception. So the start of a women’s period can be at the full moon. It is also said a woman is at her most powerful at the time of her period. So this can be a testing time for women. Energies and old issues can be stirred up by the full moon’s energizing effect, and this combined with a heightening of our female powers, can have an overwhelming affect if we don’t prepare for it. At the same time we can use this time to our advantage to become more of our true self and let go of the bits that no longer serve us.

It will help to become aware of natures cycles. To understand the moon’s cycles, we have to look at the wider picture. Everything moves in cycles. Energy rises and peaks, then falls and disappears. Then reappears and the cycle starts again.

Like day and night, the sun comes and goes.
Like the seasons spring, summer, autumn and winter.
New things are initiated in spring. Crops are planted, and this is also the time for us to start new projects. Just so the new moon is a time for initiating new projects, clearing, and personal growth.

Full moon, like summer is a culmination of our efforts and projects. Most importantly is to let go and appraise what you have done, as the energy is turning. The full moon is the peak when the most light shines on your unresolved issues. Use this energy for releasing old patterns & healing. Fill the empty spaces created with new positive patterns and energize them with positive energy.

Autumn, like the waning moon is a time for review & evaluation.

In winter we hibernate. When moon is dark be still and do nothing. Dark moon is 3 days before the new moon. Pamper yourself and rest. Don’t ‘do’.

The reason we might be so out of touch could lie in how our time gets divided by the Gregorian calendar. How it divides the year into 12 months, is not aligned with the cycles of nature. A month is really a cycle of the moon, from new moon to full moon. In old cultures they understood and worked in harmony with these cycles. Our modern society is for the most part completely out of tune and out of touch with the cycles we life in and are intrinsically part of.

So how to we deal with those times of feeling so deeply sad, disappointed or whatever feeling causes you to take notice of yourself?  To have a sustained and balanced personal growth, you would need to simultaneously work on all areas: physical health, the mind, soul/spirit and emotional. Starting with physical sometimes gives you that bit of extra help to give you the motivation to get on with it.

I recommend starting with the practice of Earthing. If you have not yet come across it yet, I highly recommend reading more up about this. Here’s just one link you might find useful:


Crudely explained, our bodies are electric. We can stay healthy by means of absorbing the electrons available to us from the earth’s electro magnetic field. This is also true for plants and animals. Illness or free radicals carry a positive charge in the body. The negatively charged electrons come and fix this issue. So by standing barefoot on a place on the earth that is not covered by some obstructions, we will absorb electrons through our feet. If the area is wet or damp it is more conductive and effective. The charge first works through our outer layers such as skin, then deeper to the muscles, and after about 30 minutes it will reach deeper organs and bones. So at least 30 minutes a day is recommended.

If you live by the sea you are very lucky, as walking in the salty water will give you the fastest and best results. Since we started wearing shoes with plastic and rubber soles, we have been cut off from these health giving electrons to such a degree that we have become ill and depressed.  Do an experiment. Try one week where you go outside and stand on a piece of grass, or best yet go for a paddle in the waves. You will be surprised by this easy and free tool for health. I worked with a woman in Sydney who had terrible morning sickness and it was causing her so much distress. I recommended Earthing. She came back the very next day,  extremely excited that it worked. Since then she had hardly any nausea.

So in these times of acceleration and pressure, this is one of your best tools, and as I said it’s completely free. If you don’t have the time, then I guess your health and growth is just not a priority for you right now. For those that have no access to bare ground, there are Earthing mats you can buy or build yourself, just do some research. A friend of mine built his own Earthing mat for their bed, and has reported amazing results of increased energy, better sleep and health.

The most difficult area to address I believe is the mind. This is a whole discussion in itself, but in order to grow, and if you want to be a successful soul, you are going to have to sort this one out at some stage. Making personal time is very important. I’m very guilty of this one myself. Find something that suits your taste. Yoga, nature walking, singing in the shower. Whatever it takes. He is not everyone’s cup of tea, but I find the material in Eckhart Tolle’s free course extremely helpful:


Maybe set yourself a time, even if you start with just one session a week and watch something inspirational and conductive to your growth.

What does the full moon have to do with any of this? I recommend seeing the full moon as an amplifier of what is already going on within you.  It can stir up and bring to the surface things that need your attention and needs releasing.  Higher energy will always dislodge and stir up lower energies that are trapped inside you.  Old energy is from past, unresolved issues. Picture it this way: every time something that you deem ‘bad’ happens to you, and you can’t or won’t deal with it at that moment, it separates and gets trapped in a bubble inside of you. A part of your energy is now trapped inside you. Trapped energy distorts with time and can get negative. If you want to clear yourself and get all your energy back, sooner or later you need to ‘burp’ these bubbles.  The energy gets released and if done right, get changed into positive energy. A clue here is not to identify with the old energy as it surfaces. Don’t give it your ‘stamp of approval’ as it will then just go back inside, waiting to resurface at another time. Become rather an observer of it as it rises and just let it out. This is difficult to do and we usually only make this distinction after the fact. But by practicing this awareness, we can become prepared, and then when the right moment comes, we can release it without re-energizing it.

We all know that emotional pain is uncomfortable at best, but this is only because of our perspective on the situation. Feel glad that you have the opportunity to get rid of something that no longer serves you. If you can, give healing and love to that part of you that feels neglected or disappointed. As this is how you change and grow and get chance to blossom into your true potential. The pain is from holding on. So observe it as best you can to gain an understanding of what is behind these feelings and reactions.

The moon’s light will help you illuminate those hidden feelings and little pockets of trapped feelings you’d rather forget. But remember the past has already happened.  It’s over. So thank the experience and this feeling that reminded you that you still have something trapped inside, that you need to release. And then thank this experience, embrace it with love. Don’t judge it, as this will just tie you into another round of the same experience. Love it and set it free, and wish it well. Now give yourself love and compassion and healing into the area that has been freed up. Each and every person on this planet is very brave and has gone through so much in their journey. We are always hard on ourselves as we know and can feel our deepest true potential underneath. Also don’t look at others and how they are, what they do and compare yourself with them. You need only express  YOU. So shine who you are as best you can. Focus on being the best YOU that you can be.

And trust that we are all part of a very beautiful and intricate puzzle, and each piece is needed to be exactly as it is to make up the picture. What would a puzzle look like where each piece is exactly the same?

Whether you might believe this to be true or not, we are all connected. This becomes apparent when someone you care about can pick up your thoughts, or you experience coincidences such as humming the same song, or calling each other at the same time. Just as a flock of birds can change direction in a split second, or a school of fish moves almost hypnotically in unison, so we humans are also connected. And while one of us are suffering, we will feel this pain. We can try and block ourselves of and try any addiction to try and suffocate this empathy we all share. The most helpful thing to do is to ask forgiveness

for our part in this pain, and so bit-by-bit we can help with the healing process of our group. Attacking something or someone will always just cause more pain and separation.

Enveloping it with love will set it free from your judgment and give it a chance to change.  And the love will help it remember it’s true nature and guide it back to this state.  If you want to get a better understanding of this forgiveness process, I highly recommend watching the material of Dr Hew Len and the practice of Ho’oponopono (based on an

ancient Hawaiian practice).

you tube

I have crammed a lot of information into this article, so I recommend finding the area that excites you most, and follow your inner guidance to the tool that is most relevant to you right now. We are all in the same boat. Next time you see someone be rude or insensitive to you, remember they might be going through some painful process you are not aware of. Just as you would not be unkind to a small brother or sister, rather lend them a loving hand, or just give them a smile, or send them some love. Lets help each other be the best we can be. Let’s be the example of freedom, love and growth.

In Lak’ech – “I am another you”

Natasja is an artist influenced by her love for nature and animals. She received a BA (Law) degree in 1997, but chose not to pursue a career in this direction. She has had an interest in health and consciousness for over twenty years and has a wealth of knowledge and experience in this field.

Natasja Brand Mason Art

Natasja Brand Mason Art

Monday, 1 September 2014


I'm just a little bit in awe of these fabulous light coloured coats and that oversized cardigan!

Which is your favourite?  Oh it's just too hard to choose, but if I had to it will be a tough choice between the first one and the last one.  

Oh the delights of fall; weekends away and country walks through forests and paths covered in autumn leaves.  Fresh blue skies and that nice crisp chill in the air....
Movie nights and red wine and those long winter nights...

Summer I do adore, but autumn I welcome with open arms too!

Images via pinterest

Sunday, 31 August 2014


Just a quick note can sometimes make someone's day.  So when you think of that someone;  a friend,  a sister or brother or mother or father, or partner- just do it. Say 'hello' or 'goodnight' or 'have a great day'. It will take less than 30 seconds, but could really make their day.

Here are a couple of messages which you are welcome to download and share

Sleep tight sweet darlings And have a great week!
And remember being thoughtful will always be fashionable


Thursday, 28 August 2014


This week has flown past, this week my energy levels have also been quite low....  
Until today.  Cause on a Thursday evening I have a Tai Chi and Qi Gong class, and it pretty much is the highlight of my week.  I get so much out of it, it calms the clatter and chitter chatter in my head, it focuses my mind and it strengthens and relaxes and re-energises my body and soul.  I should really get back in the habit of practising regularly.  

After class I felt so good and energised I went for a run - in the dark.  Sometimes its quite nice, its a safe neighbourhood, and there are normally people around, heading home, or heading out, or also heading out for a run.  Was good to get some cardio in at the same time!

But... with all this abundance of energy it also leaves me quite invigorated at this late hour - and not ready for sleep.  So I washed my hair, and here I am - in bed, wet hair, laptop open writing this post.  

And that my darlings is just an ordinary evening, in an ordinary life ....  And I just love this quote, its so perfectly sums it all up.  

'  time stands still best in moment that look suspiciously like ordinary life  '

Sometimes we yearn for the madness and the perfection and the highs and lows of a magnificent life - and I do believe, life is magnificent and I love each and every moment of mine.... but sometimes life also happens in the not so spectacular, the not so special, the random everyday moments of just being, of going to a class, or a group or an event.  Moments of cooking dinner and having a nice chat with a friend....  We need to remember to live and to live fully also in those ordinary moments and to be fully present, fully aware and to fully enjoy those moments of just being ordinary.

Lets keep going in those ordinary moments -  those life moments - but at the same time....

'  keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable  '

Because the unimaginable still happens, and it happens sometimes, no most times when we least expect it.  So be ready, and leave a little room in your heart but in an un-expecting kind of way....

Sleep tight now everyone, and have a great start to the weekend tomorrow, yay its Friday!

Images via Pinterest

Tuesday, 26 August 2014


Beautiful interior styling by Charlotte from Blackbird; for Alvhem Swedish Property Brokers.
Sadly this spacious yet minimal property is no longer in the market...

via nordic days blog


Wednesday, 20 August 2014


Recreational Island House, in the Dutch lake area ‘Loosdrechtse Plas’ designed by 2by4-architects

Project description
On an island of 5 by 100 meters in the Dutch lake area ‘Loosdrechtse Plas’ 2by4-architects designed a unique recreational house. The house is a subtle frame that captures the view from the inside out and outside in. Completely anticipating on the client’s needs 2by4 has designed the house in such a way that it can customize the interaction with the surrounding nature. One of the glass facades can be completely opened so that the wooden outdoor terrace becomes part of the interior. To even more lift the inside-outside barrier the dark wooden facade can be folded open, creating a panoramic view to nature. The folded facade becomes an abstract perpendicular element that floats above the water. By opening this part of the facade the wooden floor of the living area is now directly connected to the water enabling the inhabitants to access the lake from the living room.
Although the size of the house is limited it still contains all the functions that are needed for comfort. Shower, toilet, kitchen, closets, storage and other functions are all integrated into a double wall. According to the need of a specific function the wall can be modified so that the spatial configuration changes, resulting into different atmospheres. The fire place, that hangs from the ceiling, also contributes to the changing of atmospheres because it can be rotated towards the outdoor terrace for those cozy summer evenings.
The orientation of the house is based on sunrise and sunset. In the morning cold light shines on the east facade, illuminating the white interior. In the evening the warm light flows into the west facade, announcing the end of the day.
Visitors that arrive at the house enter it in a series of sequences. Seen from the main land the house floats above the island. Arriving on the island itself the visitors are guided towards an elevated jetty that brings them to the terrace on the other side. The terrace continues towards the inside of the house where it stops halfway. Here the floor changes material and becomes a raised platform from where the visitors can look back at the nature they just came from.
Due to heavy demands after international recognition of the Island House 2by4-architects has started a prefab version of the house. I will maintain all the main features of the original design, but will be much more affordable, flexible and faster to built. The flexible prefab cabin can be used for a wide arrange of functions like garden house, small business unit, bungalow, student home, family holiday dwelling, mountain cabin etc. 2by4-architects even wants to strife to create a do-it-yourself kit for the more enthusiastic client.
I love love love everything about this - except the size - for me it can be just a tad bigger, won't you say?
Especially if there is a group of friends, or more than 2 people.  But on the other hand, I imagine your time will be spent mostly outdoors enjoying the lake and landscape and scenery - and indoors only for shelter and sleeping and cuddling in front of that cool fireplace!  For a tiny space this is one of the best designs I have seen in some time!  I love how the kitchen and bathroom components are slotted into the wall areas.  Clever idea right there!

Please can I have one of these delivered pretty pronto!

Via contemporist

Tuesday, 19 August 2014


Big apologies for the long and unplanned absence from AnUrbanVillage.  Lots of life stuff going on, and not enough time - but I'm back now, and back for good!

Love love love this quote!

Via maika nagao

Tuesday, 22 July 2014


I know its not always the easiest thing to always be conscious of where your mind goes wondering - but being aware of your thoughts can make the difference between you having a good day and a bad day.  Just that one small tweak to keep those negative thoughts at bay, and replace them with a neutral or positive thought.

Each morning I try to get up as soon as I wake up .... its a challenge, but one I will muster;  I did say 'try'  I have read somewhere that by getting up as soon as you wake up, you will tap into all that first and fresh energy of the new day.  Wake up with a smile, and a big stretch and open your curtains and blinds and windows wide (its summer now, and believe me its been lovely to have a continuous hot few days; my windows are wide open from the moment I come home to the morning I leave for work.

Fresh air, and that fresh morning air especially is not only good for the body but also good for the soul.  Step outside and be grateful for just one small thing. However small you may think it to be, that small thought of gratefulness will start a chain of positive thoughts to continue being at the front of your thought process.

Smile as you're making your way to work, or to the gym or to a meeting,  listen to some good music,  always dress well (even on dress down days,  you will feel good when you look good,  you know what I mean)  Be helpful, do the best you can every day, and at the end of the day, tell yourself well done!  Being human with all our feelings and emotions and distractions can be one darn challenging experience, and by having a good day;  that is consciously creating a good day, by just making a few small changes, your outlook will soon change,  and as your outlook changes, your circumstances will soon start changing, the right people, the right opportunities will start appearing, your whole life will change - because you decided to make that change.

Change your thoughts and you'll change your world!  Lets all try and work on this small yet powerful concept, and I promise you the rewards will be worth it!

Have a consciously great day, and if its not started out as a good day; you still have the power within you to do something that will make the day good; maybe compliment someone on a good piece of work, or thank someone for keeping the door open for you,  maybe by making someone else's day good for just one moment, you will feel a bit better - you will get a positive response and that will make you feel good.

Go out and feel good and have a feel good day you all!

Images via Pinterest

Sunday, 20 July 2014


Easing into Sunday evening, with a bit of pinning, a bit of blogging and a bit of sketching.  A perfect way to end a gloriously relaxing weekend.  Oh and a bit of apple crumble pie baking was in order too...

Some truly realistic and absolutely beautiful renders created by Raya Todorova, from Bulgaria.   Lightness and soft hues, some contrasting greys,  great art -  If I could choose to live in any rendered space, this one will probably be top of my list!

First spotted via my unfinished home

Images via Raya Todorova on behance