Pro’s to Being Attached ~ (part two)

Two weeks ago I shared my list of some Pro’s to Being Single. Ask a young single male what’s on his list, and I’m certain it would grow ten fold. Ask a man who is afraid of commitment and the list, which is no doubt written in stone, takes on a life of its own. Ask someone who lost a love and yet another view. Married, Single, Divorced, Separated, Unavailable, Chicken we all have different lists. We all have Pro’s and Con’s depending where we are in life, what we want, need, or are ready for. We go from being single to attached when we meet someone we don’t want to be without and vice-versa!

Pro’s to Being Attached ~

  • Butterflies escape each time your thoughts go to the man you fiercely desire ~
  • You have a smile on your face that whispers “I have a secret” that comes from deep inside your soul ~
  • When you lock the door, it’s just you, him and passion bouncing off the walls, ceiling and floor ~
  • Music fills the air regardless if the stereo is on ~
  • Your heart races, feeling like it’s going to beat right out of your chest when you hear his sexy voice ~
  • Your desire to be naked outweighs your common sense *wink* ~
  • Travel and life experience is enriched when you are together ~
  • You rush home when you have GREAT News to share ~
  • The messy bed is a reminder of what you have, just had, are going to have & want more of ~
  • When you slip between the sheets his essence is still there, because he is ~
  • You subconsciously inhaling deeply when he enters the room darting straight to his neck, scent is intoxicating ~
  • You cook together, teasing one another…dinner goes cold more often than not ~
  • You wake up in the middle of the night with his arms wrapped around you feeling safe and loved ~
  • You can lay in bed talking to the wee hours of the morning face to face, or spoon in silence ~
  • He loves when you are right out of the shower, fresh and natural ~
  • You yearn to be in his presence, he embraces you for all you are ~
  • He loves your new tattoo, because he loves you ~
  • He wants to kiss you Good-night, Good-afternoon & Good-morning ~
  • He makes the BEST morning coffee that has ever touched your lips ~
  • Your family becomes his and his becomes yours ~
  • You have a go-to-guy when you need one ~
  • You have a male best friend…not to be mistaken for a girlfriend ~
  • When you go out with the girls, he’s there keeping the bed warm ~
  • Sex, sex, sex that leads somewhere magical ~
  • Intimacy ~
  • Lust and Love are experienced together, growing deeper with time ~
  • You have a man to grow old with, share life with, unfold with ~
  • You can look into his eyes from across the room knowing he’s yours later ~
  • (Insert record scratching sound here)…and then he says something that totally pisses you off and it’s like some total hottie came by and fertilized the crap out of the grass on the ‘other-side’ making it greener than you have EVER seen before…and the ‘other’ list grows…the End ~
  • Sorry I couldn’t resist! My only advice if you’re thinking of making a list…use pencil!
  • Btw the grass is NOT always greener on the ‘other-side’ but it is greener where you fertilize it…just sayin ~

It’s wonderful when you meet the right person and commit to them with mind, body and spirit, the hard part is finding the right person. When you do you don’t need a list.

Life is Meant to Be Shared...eventually when the time and person is right ~

 

 

 

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History of a Tattoo ~ Maori Style

Every time I start to think about getting another tattoo, I get the urge to do a post on another style. To continue my History of a Tattoo Series I chose Maori style tattooing or Ta Moko (to strike or tap). Ta Moko is the process of marking the body permanently with certain designs by using phi (chisels) to carve the skin rather than puncture it. Ouch!

Maoris are the original inhabitants of New Zealand. Maori is one of my all time favourites because of the cultural significance behind each design. Each design is worn for its personal significance being either; tribal history, eligibility to marry, rank, genealogy, identification and marks of beauty or ferocity. The traditional Maoris take offence to non Maori individuals imitating their culture for the sake body art. Ta Moko is the tapu (sacred) form of family and personal identification. If you absolutely love the Maori style designs they suggest you chose a Kirituhi, which is a form of pattern art that looks like Ta Moko but doesn’t make any reference to Maori symbolism. It literally means ‘skin art’.

Traditionally it took months of planning and approval from the elders and other family members in order to be worthy of getting a moko in the first place. Usually those with high ranks such as Chiefs were the only ones who could afford or be worthy of adorning them. Women traditionally only had their lips, around the chin and sometimes their nostrils tattooed which was seen as the epitome of Maori female beauty, whereas men were allowed full facial moko. Now many men decide to do other parts of their bodies excluding their face, you have to be pretty brave to sport a full facial tattoo these days! I couldn’t decide which video to include so I have included two which I though were very interesting and worth watching! Enjoy ~

More on Maori Style Tattoos…

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History of a Tattoo…The Celts ~

I’ve been seriously thinking about getting another tattoo. I love symbols because they have personal meaning depending on what lesson we have learned or path we are on in our life. In continuing with my ‘History of a Tattoo’, I have chosen ‘The Celts’ this time because I have always been drawn to symbols and love celtic artwork. I have a celtic spinning ring which I absolutely love. A few years ago I considered having the celtic knot tattooed on my ring finger but haven’t yet seen one that wore well. (and it’s supposed to be very painful in that area)

The Celts were tribal people who lived and moved around Western Europe around 1200 and 700 B.C. They reached the British Isles around 400 B.C. and most of what had survived from their culture is in the area now known as Ireland, Wales and Scotland. I traveled around Europe when I was 10 with my family and loved the beautiful country side. It feels very romantic in these areas to me, and I love the accents! Wales was where I felt butterflies for the first time when I caught eyes with a boy who drove by on a bus. I remember the moment as if it were yesterday. Funny what you choose to remember when your grown up.

My Mom’s side of the family is Scotish so maybe that is also a reason I am drawn to symbols of the Celts. Celtic culture is full of body art which was done using something called woad, (a blue dye from the flowering plant) which left a blue design on the skin.

The Celtic knot is one of the most easily recognized forms of Celtic art, with the use of spirals, single, double and triple complex braids that weave in and out symbolizing the connection of all life. I love the history behind a simple woven band! The Celtic designs are symbolic of the way various paths that life’s journey can take, with sometimes a very complex maze. I can relate to that right now. Life is ever changing we never really know our path until we are on it, most important is to just keep going’ ~ Tracy.

Here is a short video to show some of the beautiful Celtic designs, tattoo style!

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History of a Tattoo…African ~

TracyAfrican Tattoos or Scarification~

The history of tattooing in Africa dates back thousands of years. Until Otzi the Iceman was discovered, the oldest known tattoos belonged to the mummy of Amunet, a priestess of the goddess Hathor somewhere between 2160 BC -1994 BC. The designs found on her mummy, were believed to be symbols of fertility and rejuvenation.

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African scarification

Many men in West Africa undergo scaring or cicatrisation as a form of tribal initiation and bravery. This painful process begins for most young males at puberty and continues into adulthood. Scarification is done by lifting the skin a little, making a cut with a sharp tool such as a razor blade, thorn or anything with a sharp edge, and sand or ash is then rubbed into the cut to make the raised scar patterns anywhere on the body. The patterns followed are often local traditions which feel like braille lettering. Each tribe has unique designs, the man in the photo has patterns that identify his village and clan. He also has black magic symbols to help ward off evil spirits. These different designs often indicate social rank, traits of character, political status and religious authority.

scarification nuba womanFor African women, scarification is most often associated with fertility.  Scars added at puberty, after the birth of the first child, or following the end of breastfeeding, highlight the bravery of women in enduring the pain of childbirth. As if that wasn’t enough! Scars on other areas of the body such as the hips and buttocks, accentuate the erotic and sensual aspects of the female body.

Children are also included in this tradition of scarification when they reach different stages of their lives such as weaning from their mothers breast. Here in North America most tattoo artists will not tattoo anyone under the age of 18 without a parents present, however there are those who do.

In the past I have always added a video to my tattoo posts to really show the style of tattooing, this one will be no exception. However some of you might find this video graphic because of the nature of the topic. I specifically chose this one because it was filmed by National Geographic, which I grew up watching. Keep in mind as you are viewing this video that this tradition or ritual makes these individuals feel accepted by their community. Although I don’t agree with it when it involves a small child it could be compared to circumcision in North America. Technically there is no reason for either tradition or ritual. I look at these differences as educational. We are all connected as human beings regardless of our culture. I accept everyone for who they are and what they believe.  It makes the world in which we live diverse in every way. This video is not for everyone. There is some blood and a quick clip of a child who is undergoing scarification.

Here are some African Symbols with their meanings ~

adinkra symbols

Warning ~This video has some graphic content!!

I think my next tattoo will be the African Adinkra Symbol ‘Sankofa’ “return and get it” the symbol of importance of learning from the past.

Tracy signiture

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History of a Tattoo …Thai ~

Tracy History of a Tattoo Thai Style is next on my list for those of you interested in the Art of Tattooing.  In previous posts we have covered Polynesian and Japanese.

Traditional Thai Tattoos~

In Thailand tattoos were the norm for nearly all men.  Men would be tattooed as a sign of spiritual and religious faith.  Very rarely were they done as some kind of meaningless artistic display, but more often as a catalyst for change or to mark a stage in their lives.  To me that is a perfect reason to have your own canvas inked.  I like the interesting story behind a tattoo, it’s meaning is what makes the process complete.  Thai tattoo

The most popular style of tattoos in Thailand are the depictions of Buddhist Temples or Buddhist deities, such as Arya Tara our Goddess here on Tara Cronica.  Those who got these temple tattoos or Buddhist deities believed that they contained power to protect them.  These tattoos are usually done by Thai monks using India Ink or Rotring ink and were often accompanied by prayers while they were being done.

The mythical monk is still today one of the most popular creations in Thailand and Myanmar.  They are put on the human body by monks who incorporate magical powers to the design while tattooing.  Women are excluded because monks are not allowed to be touched by them and because Thais believe women do not need the extra boost as they are already strong enough on their own. How can we not love that ladies! 

Unlike Western style tattooing traditional Thai tattoos are done using hand tools and Bamboo and don’t use the same kinds of sterilization methods as you would in a shop-front tattoo studio.  Although apparently other things are added to the ink such as battery acid, plant extracts and snake oil which supposedly kills bacteria.  After being through the process myself, I can appreciate how painful the Thai method must be.  Having the religious experience brought into the art of tattooing I can understand how many are attracted to the Thai style.

Authentic Traditional Thai Bamboo Tattoing in Chiang Mai City, Northern Thailand.  Pik was a student of Grand Master Ajarn Hnuu Ganpai in this ancient art.  Angeline Jolie uses this Grand Master for her body Art

Svaha!

Tracy signiture

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Tara Cronica Ink’d at Genesis Designs Tattoo!

Genesis Tattoos in Vernon BC

(Scroll down to see photos of the big day)

TracyTracy Gets Inked! Today I got Inked!! (twice)  I have wanted to for years and until now the design and placement has never seemed quite right.  This was not a spontaneous event for me, it was planned and thought out long before the ink went on my ‘Virgin’ body never to be removed!  The Artist was Fraser Pattison from Genesis Designs Tattoo in Vernon.  Fraser’s calm demeanor made me feel very comfortable and in good hands.  My design is our Tara Cronica Symbol that we created which is the Buddhist Goddess Arya Tara’s Tiara and the Lotus.  It represents a time in my life when my passion was found and crossed over my path in life.  The branches reaching out represent growth in both myself and Tara Cronica.  Fraser created exactly what I wanted.  Timing truly is everything!  My entire experience at Genesis Designs Tattoo was incredible !  Thank you to Fraser and the Staff  for making my tattoo experience memorable !

Bonnie Johnson's Post

Bonnie Goes Next! There was a lot of excitement and anticipation and yes, a little nervousness leading up to our appointments at Genesis Designs Tattoo.  It first began during a girlfriend get together months ago.  The three of us decided that we all wanted to be together when Tracy went for her very first tattoo, which led to Jacquie and I both mulling over the idea of another tattoo for ourselves as well.  Incorporating our Tara Cronica symbol felt really right for all of us.  It stemmed from our commitment to Tara Cronica; it stemmed from a shared dedication to our friendship and it stemmed from our shared creative development of this new venture no matter where it may lead us.  The creation of Tara Cronica has allowed us all to grow and stretch in ways we hadn’t imagined.  Who wouldn’t want to memorialize all of that!

post pic 3-1Jacquie Faces the Needle! What a great day we had today!  Up until last night I was planning on placing my Tara Cronica Lotus and Tiara symbol on my wrist but, true to form, changed my mind at the last minute and stuck it on the inside of my ankle.  My friends won’t be surprised by this at all, I’m sure.  It’s classic Jacquie.

Our symbol represents the beginning of an intensely creative chapter in my life where I feel inspired and supported by my wonderful girlfriends.   I wanted my new tattoo to be in a place where I could see it and have it remind me I’m on the Path to Enlightenment and forever searching for lyrical beauty in everyday happenings.  Truth be told, I’ll never not be on that path now that I’ve begun the journey and can see how much I have yet to learn.  I’m so glad I got the tattoo and so very blessed to have Bonnie and Tracy by my side to share in the memory of it all.  And thank you Fraser and Genesis Designs Tattoo.  You Rock!

Waiting to get ink'd

Tracy's Artwork

Tracy's readyI'm ready!
Tracy at Genesis TattoosTracy at Genesis Tattoo complete!Bonnie's Artwork Bonnie's stencil outlineFraser & Bonnie at Genesis TattoosBonnie Being Inked at Genesis TattoosBonnie at Genesis Tattoos Complete!Jacquie & Fraser at Genesis TattoosJacquie getting inked at Genesis TattoosJacquie & Fraser get closeJacquie and Bonnie at Genesis TattoosJacquie at Genesis Tattoos Complete!Bonnie, Fraser, Jacquie, Tracy at Genesis Tattoos Inked!

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History of the Tattoo… Japanese ~

Tracy Previously I posted  History of a Tattoo and focused on the Polynesian style tattoo.  I will move the focus this time to the Japanese tattoo to continue the exploration of the different styles we are all drawn to.

Are tattoos no longer considered taboo?  Whether your like them or not you can’t open a magazine without seeing the men and women who adorn them.  As I said in my previous post “I love tattoos, always have and always will”.  I am drawn to those who have them out of curiosity of wanting to know the story behind the art they have permanently placed on their skin as a form of self expression until the day they die.  Have tattoos completely become acceptable in our World today.  If so it has not always been like this.

Check this out!

Japanese ~

Tattooing was considered a normal part of Japanese society until the Kofun period which ran from 300 to 600 AD when it started receiving a negative connotation.  The tattoo was previously used to designate spiritual influences as well as social status, but after this period in Japanese history, the tattoo would be used as a mark to distinguish criminals.

All the way up until the Edo period (1600 -1868 AD) the Japanese tattoos would undergo many positive and negative changes.  On the positive side they were considered a form of social status or religious belief, on the negative side, due to the Kofun period, criminals would start to use the tattoo for their own purposes.   It was not until recent times that it became a true art form as a means of self expression.

The earliest evidence of tattooing in Japan was found in the form of clay figurines which have faces painted or engraved to represent tattoo marks.  The oldest figurines have been recovered from tombs dated 3,000 BC or older.  The figurines were stand-ins for living individuals who symbolically accompanied the dead on their journey into the unknown.  It is also believed  they had magical significance.

There have been debates over whether the traditional tattoos were adorn by those of great wealth or those of lower status, but one thing stands true is that the Japanese tattoos have been considered throughout time as some of the most magnificent works of body art our world has seen.

Japanese tattooThe traditional Japanese tattoos were nothing less than complex works of art that would be able to tell another person an entire story.  Some of these stories would tell of a great battle, myth or folklore.  Japanese tattoos were and still are considered to be some of the most elaborate works of body art.

In many cases though, as anyone who has had a tattoo knows, there are certain colors that work with certain skin pigments and in the case of the traditional Japanese tattoos, all of these were done in either blue or green as these always came out the best.  That’s not to say that other colors don’t look just as good, but if you are going for a traditional looking Japanese tattoo then those are the colors to go with.

The ‘horis’ or Japanese tattoo artist were the undisputed masters.  Their use of colours, perspective and imaginative designs gave the practise a whole new angle.  The classic Japanese tattoo is a full body suit.  Now that’s a commitment!

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Don’t knock it till ya try it!

There are some things that I am not completely on board with yet but I don’t judge, I try to understand.  Don’t knock it till ya try it, right?  I think trying new things is the best way to understand them.  Sometimes that takes us out of our comfort zone.  I’ve been going out of my comfort zone more lately and I am starting to like it.

Piercing

I don’t understand certain types of piercings.  Why anyone would possibly want their pink parts (privates) pierced is beyond me.  But I don’t judge.  I spent quite sometime early last year in ‘I Kandy’ a tattoo and piercing business when ‘a really good friend of mine’ got a large Polynesian style tattoo.  It took about 6 months from start to finish, which included creating the entire tattoo from scratch, along side the artist Cristoffer Fullton. RIP.  The most incredible tattoo I have ever seen, still.  We spent hours there so I had a good look around.  I noticed in some of the cabinets they had mock ups of different kinds of piercings you could get.  I was shocked at some of them.  They had pretend pink parts(privates) on display to demonstrate what it would look like.  I had to giggle when I saw them.  Wow is all I could think!  I tried to imagine the first person who got there pink bits pierced trying to explain to the piercer what they wanted done.  “Seriously though, you want WHAT pierced?”   Piercing, when I was growing up, was something you had to wait for, a coming of age ceremony kind of thing.  How things have changed.  How I have changed along the way.

Okay, so I woke up yesterday and decided to get a piercing of my own.  Didn’t really think it over very long….spontaneity!  I wanted to step out of my comfort zone and I did.  I went in to “I Kandy” which now has their piercing space across the lane , separate from the tattoo business.  I just walked in and I got a consult to have my nipple pierced!!  Sorry Mom, I lied!!  I still can’t believe it.  I started to panic while standing there and thought, “no, I can do this”.  It’s my body, my path in life, and no one can tell me otherwise.  If you know me, you know exactly my frame of mind lately and can see this process is in full swing.  Don’t knock it till ya try it, right?  I was escorted into the ‘room’ where Mahela (the piercer) was waiting.  She was really nice and very calm.  I needed calm, let me tell you!!  I sat down on the black lounge chair and she had me sign all the packaging to assure myself things were sterile.  That made me feel better.  She calmly, and in a soft, almost hypnotic voice, asked me kindly to take a few deep breaths as she got prepared!  I have to say that it was frightening!  I took one last deep breath and PIERCE, it was done.  YES, IT HURT!  I can’t even explain the feeling except that YES, IT HURT!  So there you have it!  Me with a pierced nipple!  I would post a picture but my Mom would be mortified!!  So yeah, April fools !

PS.  I did get my nose pierced!  THANKS MIHELA !! You were awesome!!

TracyTracy

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Tattoo Curse?

Tracy’s Take

You know the curse.  It goes like this –  you meet a guy, you fall in love, he gets your name on his skin somewhere permanently and the next day you dump him.  It works in reverse too, but you’re on a Women Inspiring Women site,  so we’ll go with this version.nick-cannon-mariah

There must be some truth to this because ‘a really good friend of mine’ was in the process of getting a tattoo and the artist actually had that conversation with him.  Was he really sure that he wanted his partner’s sign on his body for life?

Curses and superstitions are all just different forms of fear trying to prevent us from not living in the moment. I think every tattoo has a unique  story behind it.  Doesn’t everyone watch Kat Von D on LA Ink just for that, the stories behind the art?

When I see a tattoo I am instantly intrigued.  I want to hear who, what, where, why and when.  I want to admire the art and artist behind the work.  I’ve even gone as far as asking two very handsome, young, strapping, hormone raging (your getting the picture, right?) guys if they would take off their shirts so I could have a better look, all in the name of research, of course.  I can’t remember what their tattoos were of, but my point is…. if you took the step to place your art on your skin you should wear it proudly and show that you have no fear.   I think tattoos are another  unique way of expressing ourselves.  Be proud of the skin your in.  What are your thoughts?

Tracy

Jacquie’s 2 cents

Well Tracy,  I think the reasons people get tattoos change with each generation but the ‘curse of the loved-one’s name’ has withstood the test of time.   I really wanted to do something a bit ‘rebel-ish’ to celebrate a milestone birthday a few years ago and so I got a small tattoo on my right shoulder.    I went through a full hour of some majorly intense smarts to get my ink trophy so it really fries my bacon when I get accused of flashing a…rub-on!!! People thought it looked too neat and tidy or ‘cute’!  I needed to make it edgier, they said!

My dear sister, always wanting to see me suffer be helpful,  suggested I add my husband’s name underneath the design.   Um…at that point in my life if I thought I was going to be with him forever maybe I wouldn’t have felt the need to get the tattoo!!!!    What part of the word rebel don’t you understand?!

I had a way out.  My husband’s Asian so if I just had the characters that made up his Chinese name added in a  vertical line  under my tattoo we’d all go home happy.   His name in Chinese is Future Go Smoothly.  No, that’s my son’s name.  Anyway, it had something to do with money, the future & happiness.  Very transferable sentiment.

I haven’t been back to have my tattoo added onto yet.  Yeah,  I’ll admit I’m not relishing the idea of having that needle buzzing in my ear and busting up my epidermis again.  Plus, I’ve heard horror stories, and had a good laugh, at the celebrities who’ve permanently scrawled things like ‘Large Waste’ or  ‘This Boy is Ugly’  in Chinese when they really meant to say Love, Honor and Obey.  I don’t know if I trust the combination of Gavin’s dad’s handwriting and the tattoo artist’s skills with something this permanent.  What if it wound up saying ‘You Don’t Know What You’ve Got ‘Til it’s Gone”.   Geez,  I’d have egg on my face!

If what you say is true, Tracy, then I owe the success of my marriage to the fact that I haven’t put his stamp of ownership on my person.  I get it.

No one can predict what will happen tomorrow, but I know now that when I do get up the nerve to add to my tattoo I’ll do it without fear.  I’ll do it because I truly believe that I’ll always have the same feeling of love, and most of all respect,  for  Big Lucky Dragon,  and that will never change.

jacquie

Bonnie weighs in…

I too decided to get inked on a birthday.  It wasn’t any milestone number, but I was at a point in my life where I wanted to do something wild and dangerous.  It was dangerous to me not because of the fear of dirty needles, but because I knew my mother would disapprove.

It was absolutely delicious to me to have this fair sized but well hidden tattoo that she knew nothing about…at first.  After a while, however, the smugness turned into fear.  Every time I was around her I was hyper conscious of keeping my shirt tucked in.   Here I was in my mid and even late 30’s and worrying about my shirt not being tucked in when I was around my mother!  Damn!  I didn’t feel empowered by my secret at all anymore, I just felt like I was 7 years old again.  For years, whenever I was on my way to see my parents, I would rehearse telling them about my body art.  And for years I would chicken out.   I spent the entire drive volleying clever come backs to all the disapproving remarks.  Then by the time I’d arrived at their door step I was exhausted and I did not want to go there!

Worse was that I even had my young son and my husband watching out for me.  There were a few times around my mother that one or both of them would cough and widen their eyes at me when my shirt had hiked up.  Finally my husband had enough and gently coaxed me into revealing my “big” secret.  I was approaching 40 years old after all.  What was she going to do, ground me?

On the day of the reveal I warned her that I had something big I wanted to tell her and that I hoped she would not freak out too much.  This was over the phone before we arrived so she had hours to guess at what it could be.  She has a great imagination and so came up with some doozy scenarios of her own.  When I finally broke the big news, palms sweating and pale skinned, her reaction was a very disappointing “Oh is that all!”.  What!

There are a few lessons in this story and they are pretty obvious so I won’t bore you by listing them.  I just hope after reading my tattoo story I can save someone from the same fate.

Bonnie

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