Gems 5.221

I hope you’re having a beautiful day. ♡
This year on  ¤ under1000skies.org ¤

This is the last Gem of the year. I am especially thankful for the number we ended with this year (221, or 2/21, my son Ben’s birthday). Thank you for all the prayers and good thoughts since he disappeared. Thank you for sharing his page and information “Missing Benjamin.” We are all grateful for everyone who has shared and reached out since Day 1 – March 2, 2016.)

Thank you for sharing a beautiful year with us. May 2020 be the best year for all of us.

Happy New Year!

fireworks

♥.

July 2018 Gallery Show

I hope you’re having a beautiful day. ♡
Welcome to our July, 2018 ¤ Gallery Show ¤

JOHNNY O

Nicole Huguenin, one of our contributing artists and volunteers, and a dear friend, introduced us to our first homeless artist John Olander in 2017.  Nicole was featured on our first Spotlight Saturday:  Dream Together (fka Wild Dream Walks).

John has not only been generous with his poetry contributions, but has been very vocal and supportive about getting the word out about under1000skies to other homeless creatives and supporters in Denver.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

 

CORD X

Through Simbi, I met Cord in July of 2017.  Cord, a very kind and wonderfully creative soul, not only shared some of his vivid photos from San Antonio but his absolutely beautiful poetry as well.

.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Thank you so much to Johnny O. and Cord X.   I’m so grateful for our connection to you, for your generosity, compassion, strength, tenacity and, most especially for your blazing creativity which inspires me every day.


With love and gratitude,

. under1000skies
☼ A “Giftivism” Initiative ☼
We are photographers,
writers, artists & advocates
serving and connecting
homeless creatives

Gems 4.96

I hope you’re having a beautiful Friday. ♡
Here’s another light-filled ¤ Gem ¤

Read by Thich Nath Hanh, chanted by brother Phap Niem. The creators of this audio track were Gary Malkin, the composer/arranger, producer, and collaborator Michael Stillwater. The work came from a CD/book called Graceful Passages: A Companion for Living and Dying, and it could be purchased by going to wisdomoftheworld.com. The creator of this video is R Smittenaar. This video can be downloaded at: https://vimeo.com/6518109 Visuals taken from: HOME, Earth and Baraka

Please forgive the lateness of this Gem.  The time/stamina I had today went to something that is deeply touching my heart:   Updates from Texas.  The chant came from a friend on KindSpring who is grieving the loss of a sister. I needed a way to let go of the anxiety that was building since I began writing this morning.  It really helped. It’s a beautiful chant.

Some news…

July

Next Monday we’ll feature our homeless artists, JohnnyO and Cord X’s beautiful creations in a Gallery Slide Show.  We’ll be taking the rest of July off except for any Spotlight Saturday interviews we might be able to line up.

August

August and ongoing, our theme will always be about the homeless and the struggle of homelessness.   We’ll use quotes, share news and feature those serving the homeless (more Spotlight Saturdays).

The exception to that is:

September

The 2nd Annual KindSpring Eowyn Challenge

Beginning on Hobbit Day (September 22nd) we’ll begin a new KindSpring Eowyn Challenge:  Walking through Earth and Middle EarthAll are welcome! All photos used will be original artwork, photos or those gifted for the limited use of the challenge.  I’ll supply the link to the challenge once it’s set up and ready.  I’ll also be continuing The Journal of Samwise Gamgee.  Since we didn’t finish that here due  to some technical problems in 2015, we’ll do the same walk as the first one:  Bag End to Rivendell with Frodo and Company.

JULY 2017 GALLERY SHOW

I hope you’re having a beautiful day. ♡
Welcome to our third ¤ Gallery Show ¤

 

Edited with PicMonkey

Created using a PicMonkey template.  Artist unknown.

Thank you so much to all the contributing artists and creatives who have helped under1000skies every day since we began in 2015.

  1. BEN ARCHER
  2. DR. RALPH BELL
  3. CONTESSA BROWN
  4. CREATIVE THEMES
  5. DAVID COLEMAN
  6. MIKE DOWNS
  7. NIKI FLOW
  8. FREE IMAGES.COM
  9. J.J. GARCIA
  10. JOHN HACK
  11. CHIP HALDANE
  12. AL HANDA & IVY
  13. NICOLE HUGUENIN
  14. JONATHAN KENDRICK
  15. STEPHANI PUI-MUN LAW
  16. M.J.
  17. STEVE MANN
  18. MARVEL COMICS
  19. CARLOS MENDEZ
  20. MELISSA M. MORRIS
  21. NOTHINGTOSEE MOVEALONGNOW
  22. CHRISTIAN NITU
  23. JOHN “JOHNNY O” OLANDER
  24. PHOTOS-PUBLIC-DOMAIN.COM
  25. PIXABAY PHOTOGRAPHY VOLUNTEERS
  26. JOE RALEY
  27. ALISA REAGAN
  28. THE REAGAN FAMILY
  29. PAUL ANTHONY SCHMITZ
  30. SHELTERING GRACE
  31. SHOWER-UP NASHVILLE
  32. SOLIVAN C. SZUPKA
  33. STOCKPHOTOS.COM
  34. WILD DREAM WALKS

 

2013

In 2013, under1000skies was just a site Niki Flow created for random poems, photos and sketches.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

2014

She didn’t do much with it in 2014.  Then on November 14, 2014, Niki’s whole life changed.  She wrote a story about it here:  It Begins with Me.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

2015

Year 1:  Gems 1.1 to 1.81.  It took almost a year to solidify a plan to keep the promise made in the November 14, 2014 blog.  On September 2, 2015, the first “light-filled gem” was published:  Gems 1.1

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

2016

Year 2:  Gems 2.1 to 2.82  On March 2, 2016, Niki’s oldest son Ben Archer, disappeared.  Ben was one of the main contributing photographers and one of Niki’s staunchest supporters.   As of this writing (1 year, 3 months later) none of his family nor any of his friends have seen or heard from him since.  Many of the posts on under1000skies were about Ben that year, but the family decided to take most of those posts down.  They thought Ben might be embarrassed at all the fuss and would come home when it died down.  So we took down all the blogs, waited and never gave up hope.  We never will. Ben’s case is also now on the Federal Database here:   Ben Archer:  NamUs MP # 33696   All updates about Ben are being kept here:  Niki Flow.   In October of 2016 we started an Instgram Account for under1000skies and in November of 2016 we started a Twitter Account. We’re also on Tumbler, G+, Pinterest and Facebook.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

2017

Year 3:  Gems 3.1 to 3.65 (so far).  In 2017 we began a brand new year with new photographers, artists and, for the first time, our first contribution from one of our homeless creatives, “Johnny O.”  We also began our first Spotlight Saturday and hope to continue these at least every other week in the years go come.  We also finally designed a signature logo and a website logo.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

clu

 

JULY – DECEMBER, 2017

There’s a lot more coming in the next six months of 2017.

Website and Stationary Story

We’ll be getting under1000.org up and running as well as our stationary store under1000skies.com.

On the Road under1000skies

On or about August 1, 2017 Niki Flow will be begin a USA tour which has three objectives:  (1) to meet volunteers and supporters of under1000skies around the United States; (2) to get the word out about under1000skies with road shows, poetry slams, music shows, and on-the-road gallery shows.  We’ll have a table set up with information about us as well as boxes of stationary, volunteer packets, and artist packs; and (3) to follow in the footsteps of Niki’s son, Ben Archer who was a traveling artist.  He visited 25 states in 2015 from one coast to the other and went to dozens of artist shows.  This is where Niki will set up her under1000skies table with the Gallery Show and Ben’s photo prominently displayed.  If anyone has seen Ben, it would be these creative folks he loved to spend so much time with.  If you would like Niki to stop in your city; if you’d like to support this road trip with materials, a bed for a night, supplies, a meal or even a few hours of company, please write to us at Gems@gmail.com.

 

thank you

To all our artists, photographers, writers and advocates, quote suppliers, cheerleaders and especially to our homeless creatives and those who love and support them too, with all our hearts, thank you.

With deep thanks and lots of love,

under1000skies logo 1
☼ A “Giftivism” Initiative ☼
We are photographers,
writers, artists & advocates
serving and connecting
homeless creatives.

OUR 2nd BIANNUAL GALLERY SHOW

I hope you’re having a beautiful day. ♡
Here’s some exciting news about our light-filled ¤ Gems! ¤

Thank you to everyone who has supported, followed, liked and commented our blog since our first Gems last fall.  It is with great pleasure that we announce our Second Biannual Gallery Show in support of The Gems Project!

Before the storm

Before the Storm in Delaware City by Niki Flow

OUR PHOTOGRAPHERS AND ARTISTS

Below, you can view our Gems by specific contributing artist.  Special thanks and a big shout-out to these talented artists who have so generously shared their inspirations with us:

Ben Archer

Chip Haldane

Contessa Brown

Michael Downs

Nicole Huguenin

Niki Flow

Nothingtosee Movealongnow

If you would donate photos, art or to volunteer, please see our About “The Gems Project” Page. We need photographers, artists, volunteers, art and photography lovers to spread the word and, of course, donations for the Artist Packs.  If you have any thoughts or questions please leave a comment below. 

Thanks so much again for visiting!

 

Save

Gems News

Big News today for Gems/Under1000Skies!

packs

As Posted on Instagram:
#under1000skies Our artist-pack supplies came in today! We have enough for six packs. Each pack includes pens, an all-weather notebook, a disposable camera and a waterproof bag (shown behind). Each (winter) pack also includes one warm scarf and one pair of gloves. Three of these packs are going to our Denver volunteer @wilddreamwalks two to our Delaware team @jazztizz and the other one to our California volunteer @big_manuel  These photos will be returned to us to be developed scanned and featured on our “Under1000Skies” @wordpressdotcom site along with poetry, musings, stories or anything else the artists care to write. We began Under1000skies as a way for homeless artists to connect with each other and form bonds of mutual respect, compassion and deep understanding from shared life experiences. Our Second Gallery #exhibition will be up this weekend. #grateful #heartsong #homeless #artists #photographers #lightfilledgems Special thanks to @cntryboyluv @#and @wilddreamwalks for photography #contributions. We are always looking for new #photos and #art to feature on our site. You always retain full rights. See our “about” page for more info. Thank you you so much for helping us distribute these packs! Thanks also to everyone for your support and for helping to spread the word about “Under1000Skies”. 😊@tizzlovesrowdy

Gems 1st Biannual Gallery Show

I hope you’re having a beautiful day. ♡
Here’s some exciting news about our light-filled ¤ Gems! ¤

 cloud

OUR FIRST BIANNUAL GALLERY SHOW

You can view the Gems (and all artists) in reverse order in our new

Gallery Carousel

Thank you to everyone who has supported, followed, liked and commented our blog since our first Gems last fall.  It is with great pleasure that we announce our first Gallery Show in support of The Gems Project.

OUR PHOTOGRAPHERS AND ARTISTS

You can also view our Gems by specific contributing artist.  Special thanks and a big shout-out to these talented artists who have so generously shared their inspirations with us:

Ben Archer

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Chip Haldane

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Contessa Brown

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Michael Downs

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Nicole Huguenin

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Niki Flow

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Nothingtosee Movealongnow

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

If you would donate photos, art, time or currency to The Gems Project, please see our About “The Gems Project” Page. We need photographers, artists, volunteers, art and photography lovers to spread the word and, of course, donations for the Artist Packs.

♡ Gems 2.16 ♡

WEDDING SONG cypress

Cyprus by Stephanie Pui-Mun Law, Shadowscapes.com, one of the paintings featured in Elanthian Love Songs.

♡ Gems, Gemstone, and Elanthian Love Songs – A Bard’s Tale ♡

Serendipity

Things are going smoothly here save for a few last-minute changes to my poetry book Elanthian Love Songs – a Bard’s Tale.  It is to be my first published book.  The release date is still set for Valentine’s Day (Sunday) on Amazon.  It’s nearly there!  The book is closely tied in with Gems as you will see, below.

My days are more balanced as I work hard. Dreams I’ve had for years are coming to be.  I’ve been getting up with the sun, doing yoga and meditating, then starting my day. I’m off coffee completely and drinking either ginger and lemon tea or peppermint (from fresh-cut herbs) as a morning drink.  At home, we’re putting in a hardwood floor in our living room and hall this week.  We’ve been unloading boxes and boxes of papers and I’ve been organizing filing systems both for our house budget and my own writing projects.  The Hay House video series had some great ideas about that.

Seashore Strolling (or Running)

We’re walking more and as the snow is melted now, we’ll be out daily again to get ready for the 5th Annual Running for Joy 5k/1 mile. I  can’t believe this is the 5th year.  You’re very welcome to join us (no matter where you walk the miles). =) Remote walkers/runners who do either the 5k or 1 mile will receive shiny awards made of 1’s and 0’s too!

Son-shine

My oldest son is staying with us now and has been such an encouragement and good example.  He is learning musical healing techniques, Ayurvedic yoga, herbal healing, and meditation.  I’m learning with him!  It’s been a joy to talk to him every day about everything he’s learned.   I’m stronger and healthier than I’ve been in a long time using his suggestions and especially getting rid of all the toxins in our home.  We eat really clean now, and almost everything is from one-ingredient organic sources.  We rarely eat meat and most of our protein comes from fish and plants.  We recently joined our local, organic whole-foods co-op in Newark which also has a huge selection of fresh-cut herbs.

Sara Michele O’Something-or-other and Shadowscapes

Today I’m putting the final touches on my book and cover. I’m waiting to hear back from my editor on two poems and from my artist friend about the cover design I did.  The cover and every one of the poems feature the beautiful art of Stephanie Pui-Mun Law (Shadowscapes.com).  We purchased limited copyright for Elanthian Love Songs.  

Soon:  Online Gallery Show for Gems

under1000skies is on temporary hiatus until we get more original photo donations.  I’m working on a gallery show and the opening date will be February 29th.

Songs of the Heart

So far I am working with a man in Denver named John who writes poetry.  He is currently unhoused but he is still taking time for creativity. He is working on putting together a two- or three-week series of photos for me and those will be featured next  His friend Nicole (Wild Dream Walks) of Denver has facilitated my introduction to John.  He’s a beautiful soul and very creative.  Nicole also has one person in Denver that is interested in being a volunteer for Gems / Volunteer Biographers and one in San Francisco, so that’s exciting!  We’re also hoping to affiliate soon with a soup kitchen in Philly.

Seeker Finds

My biggest contributor of photos in the past two months was a man who was “homeless” by choice during most of 2015  — my son Benjamin.  He says he prefers the term “nomadic” to “homeless.”  During that year, his life was touched deeply by a spiritual awakening.   He came close to dying twice. In both circumstances, his survival was miraculous.  During this year and his awakening, my son literally did an about-face.  This new direction he walks is filling me with joy — and health! He has been instrumental in helping all of us — my husband Mike, his brother Joe, his Nana (my mom), and many of his friends, too.

Laddership

The Laddership Program by Service Space where I have been one of the co-creators (as our beloved mentor Nipun Mehta calls it) since 2014 showed me that I can be a part of the gift economy and design for generosity, too.  The people I met through the program showed me that I can live my dream within the framework of my principles as they are doing or plan to do.  So, to that end, half the proceeds from the sale of Elanthian Love Songs will go toward supporting this site and the artists.

I’ll post an invitation for you soon to the Gems “1st Online Gallery Show” eta February 29th.

I hope you have a beautiful day.