Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Soulbrush interviewed me!

1.) What is it about mandalas that fascinates you so much? I like the sense of harmony when creating a mandala. And the limitation of the circle. Before I sometimes had a piece of paper in front of me and the possibilities were endless, it just made me indecisive. Somehow it didn´t let my creativity flow. I got stuck in all the paths which were open for me. Once I knew what to draw or paint it was ok. When I started with mandalas I liked the fact that birth numbers were connected with colors, so I didn´t have to pick them myself. I was forced to work with colors I didn´t like or prefer. The most unexpected things occur on paper! Meanwhile I learned to appreciate all colors. I let myself be lead by intuition and faith that it will all turn out just right. I have found my own style and I love the fact that there is always an animal in my (birth) mandalas. During the process of creating the mandala I learn a lot myself. I learned that there is no animal on this planet which isn´t interesting, once I know which animal to paint I search the internet and find the most amazing details about it. The same About colors and symbols. It is a feeling of diving into something or someone. This taught me too that every human being is beautiful , since a birth mandala unfolds the blueprint of one’s soul. Mandalas teach me how to be patient, or at least try and they quiet me down, especially my mind. After 8 years of painting mandalas I am still fascinated and I don´t want to stop yet. There is still so much to learn. In the beginning I thought it would be a temporary thing but now I think I am hooked for life. I have the feeling this is my “thing”, . 2.) When is your birthday and how do you usually celebrate it? I was born on the fourth of July (1961). I don’t like to celebrate my own birthday. When I am at home I try to go out for the whole day and do something nice with my husband and kids. Afterward my kids always say: 'Mom, that was a great party!' Last year I celebrated my birthday at home and I went to fetch my parents, to do them a favor. In the evening some friends came over and we sat outside in the garden and had a nice time. I have no idea why I don’t want to celebrate: I think you have to celebrate life, but you can do that every day. 3.) Have you always had Shi Tsus and what do you like most about this breed? I worked at a shelter when I did my study for shelter and animal kennel management. (I did beside flying). Later the manager, Corrie, asked me if I wanted to help her out with shaving and cutting some neglected animals who had been removed from their owners. Of course I said yes , I will never say no to an animal who needs my help. So I went to the shelter And had to do 2 animals. I started with an Afghan, and that took me all day. The second dog was a Shih Tzu. I decided to take her home and trim her there and bring her back the next day. I started cutting and washing her but it was an enormous job! Friends came over and I had to stop. At that time we had 6 cats (adopted from my work in the shelters as a volunteer) The friends who came that night had a nervous dog with them and all the cats were stressed and ran away. The dog lay on top of the couch and looked at me like: 'You see how well-behaved I am. I would never do anything like this dog is doing.' The friend said: 'this dog is no trouble at all. You can have 10 of these.' And my husband agreed .'Well then, we can keep just this one can’t we?' I asked. That was the moment we decided to keep her. Next day I took her to a dog parlour to have her cut. The day after we went to Antwerp because my husband told me he had seen the most beautiful leash there. On our way back we went to visit the shelter to show Corrie how beautiful she was and to tell her that we would keep her. We parked the car and the happy dog heard where we were (she was nearly blind in both eyes) and her wagging tail just dropped. She thought we were going to take her back….. She looked at us in despair. Corrie was also startled when she saw us: 'Oh no ………you are returning her?'. We told her and Snorkel (that’s what we named our Shih Tzu) not to worry. (Corrie knew that we would keep her when I took her home, she told me later) After she died 8 happy years later (she was about 8 when we got her) I wanted a pug (I just love them) , but my husband convinced me Shih Tzu’s were the best. And they are such happy, friendly and gentle dogs! Snorkel was for sure the most wonderful dog I have ever had, I still miss her. 4.) Has blogging changed your life in any way?? It sure has! It is addicting! I have met so many nice friends, warm and inspiring people! Every morning I start with coffee and blogging. I learn a lot from other bloggers, enjoy the eye candy they present me with or the wise words. There is always someone who makes me laugh. I am inspired and encouraged . I love my circle of blogfriends! 5.) Are you a good cook and what is your favourite food and drink? It is certainly not my hobby! But I can make a few yummy dishes and no one ever complains . My favourite foods: I love Asian ,Lebanese & Italian food Pizza, fries, fried rice, fastfood (love Mc Donalds), sateh with peanut sauce oh my g…… In short, everything that is bad and fattening . But I started a low carb diet this month and lost 3 kilos (6 lbs) so far ! No more fries, bread , sweets etc. I am very determined to persevere. And I feel good. After the diet I hope to sustain a more healthy lifestyle. My favorite drinks? Wine! And since I can’t drink that all day water, I just love Spa Reine! I drink a lot of that, I am very particular in my brand of water.I don’t drink tap water. And I love fresh orange juice (but I am allowed just one fresh orange a day for now) If anyone would like me to interview you with five questions just leave a comment saying "Interview me." Here's the instructions: 1. Leave me a comment saying, "Interview me". 2. I will respond by emailing you five questions. (I get to pick the questions). 3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions. 4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post. 5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions. Thanks Soulbrush from this interview! It was fun! And thanks for your help as well. More Interviews: Soulbrush Kim Suki Patti Lolo Are there more interviews? Let me know and I will add the link


  1. Oh, how interesting! I particularly enjoyed hearing about how you got into/found your mandalas. That not knowing what to create is a big problem for me...very fun to learn so much about you Marianne!!! That was fun.

  2. what a delightful post m.
    dankie vir die baie mooi anywoorde, en ook die fotos, veral die shih tsus en liewe snorkel.
    ek het dit ook so baie geniet. vandag gaan ek na my seun en skoondogter en babatjie vir die dag en dan elke dag van nou aan, hulle sukkel baie. die 'tube' van hier na hulle is amper 2 ure, maardan kom my ma om my te haal vanaand. hulle wil alleen wees oor die nag, so ek kom husitoe. dis harde werke maar ek geniet dit so baie!

  3. This is a great post and I just love the story of your little Snorkle. I can completely envision the little tail drooping when he thought you were bringing him (her?) back to the shelter - that must have been heartbreaking!

    Pugs are WONDERFUL dogs (great with children) but these little Shiz's are wonderful also

  4. M - did Suki interview or SB???

  5. Hi Mim!
    Yes it was heartbreaking! I really felt it there! But I had to do my best to assure HER it was only a visit!
    Later I workes it that shelter two days a week as an assistant manager and then I always took Snorkel with we to work. It took a very long time before she had the confidence I was not taking her back and later she knew we were just going to work.
    I will never forget that tail dropping down and the look on her face........

    And Soulbrush did the interview!

  6. Marianne, this is a wonderful interview. Soulbrush asked some good questions. It is good getting to know you better.

    The picture of your sweet little dogs peeking through the fence is so cute.

    You are quite right that mandalas are your calling. You do such a great job making them. I love this one with the lizards.

  7. Hi Marianne,

    This is wonderful and so insightful. I love the way you talk about creating the Mandalas and what that means to you. Your passion comes through in your words to be sure.

    The same is true when you talk of your little puppies...ah, so cute.

    Don't we all love those foods which are not so good for us? I know the best thing to keep me focused on what is better for my body is realizing how the food makes me feel as and after I eat it.

    Thank you for the shout out, too. Wonderful interview to be sure!

  8. /soulbrush, great questions. Marianne, what wonderful stories you have told. I esp love the story of your doggie. So sweet. And the meaning that making mandalas has for you. Isnt it magical you have found this. Laurel at has just published the interview I did with her.

  9. what a wonderful post marianne. great interview! i love learning things about you. how fun!
    :) melissa

  10. How funny that you and I posted our interviews at the same time! Suki interviewed me.

    I love Shih Tzus too! i had a wonderful rescue one for almost 16 years. I have to say I don't miss the constant grooming but I do miss him :(

    I think mandalas are your "thing" too!! Marianne, I'd like to comission you to do my birth mandala. Would you please email me and give me the details you need?

    This was a wonderful interview!


  11. What a wonderful interview; great questions and great answers. It is so nice to know you better.

    The whole dog story had me in tears! So sweet!


  12. You are a special lady...your interview was wonderful, and sensitive...I continue to send prayers and wishes of hope and peace to you...God Bless you and your family.


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