The Monastic Mamas Unblock & Unlock Your Best Creative Life Podcast-logo

The Monastic Mamas Unblock & Unlock Your Best Creative Life Podcast

Arts & Culture Podcasts

Small bursts of creative/spiritual insight as well as amazing interviews with women doing their creative freedom work. I want to help you live your best creative life! Listen, be inspired, implement and create. Come on busy lady, you've got world-changing work to do! You can also follow me over on IG @monasticmamas and check out my website at


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Small bursts of creative/spiritual insight as well as amazing interviews with women doing their creative freedom work. I want to help you live your best creative life! Listen, be inspired, implement and create. Come on busy lady, you've got world-changing work to do! You can also follow me over on IG @monasticmamas and check out my website at




Episode 28: The School Wound of Creativity with Lucy AitkenRead

Lucy AitkenRead is a writer, facilitator, and certified coach. She's also mum to two children, Ramona, 11, and Juno, 9, and they have all been unschooling for a decade. Three years ago, Lucy poured this experience into a bowl and stirred it together with her work in social policy and activism to bake the DISCO – unschooling course. After facilitating the first two courses, she began to feel like this work was so deep that she needed to be very certain she knew what she was doing as a subterranean guide, so she spent 2020 doing “transformational depths” training in order to be able to provide the hybrid of intuitive coaching and consulting she is now known for. I reached out to Lucy because I have been in a swirl of thought lately about creative unblocking and how excavating our creativity is tied up with our school experiences. In my work helping women unblock their creativity through "The Artist's Way," my "Memoir-In-Progress" Course, and creative spiritual direction/creative companioning, I have heard story after story of how school experiences have hindered creativity. Cue Lucy! I asked about her experience of the "school wound of creativity" and how it affects us long-term. But we don’t stop there! Listen in for tangible ways to move through these long-standing wounds to move towards freedom. And if you want to connect with Lucy's work, head on over to or follow her on Instagram at lucy_aitkenread. --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 27: Kristy Gordon & JoyDance

Kristy Gordon, the founder of JoyDance LLC, invites others to experience God’s love through movement. Her story begins in the garage of her childhood home. She shares, “I spent hours in the garage playing my little boom box and dancing till I was a sweaty mess. I danced without rules, without expectations. It was there that I learned dancing connected me to something bigger than myself, healed my soul, and brought me pure joy.” As an adult, Kristy began pursuing worldly success and external validation. Even after earning a Ph.D. in sociology and working in academia, she felt a dark emptiness within. “I couldn’t find that little girl from the garage inside. God mourned my withered spirit with me. Fortunately, my story did not end there. God picked me up and set me on a path to return to that feeling of freedom and joy. It was during this journey back to wholeness that JoyDance was born.” Kristy is excited to say YES to God’s call and continue sharing JoyDance with others. Come listen in to Kristy's journey. Her story back to first loves and wholeness through movement is an invitation for us all to listen to the voice of God in our own story and revisit the spaces that bring us deep connection and joy! --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 26: Sick Days//Guarding your creative energy when you’re sick.

Let’s talk about the correlation between over-consuming content when you don’t feel well and moving out of illness with your creative health intact. --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 25: FOMO is dangerous creative currency

I’m at it again with the random thoughts about this creative spiritual journey. Fear is a really crummy motivator and when it becomes a driving force, at least for me, the creative well begins to run dry. So here’s what I’m doing about it. Take a listen. --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 24: Spaghetti Throwers (Or, The Episode Where I Try to Convince You Not to Quit)

Can we have an honest chat? Sometimes creative work as hard. Sometimes I want to give up and I know sometimes you do too. But let’s keep throwing spaghetti at the wall, shall we? Let’s keep believing that no creative act is ever wasted. --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 23: Permission to Take a (Creative) Break with Barbara Baer & Creative Dreambox

Barbara Baer is an actress, dancer, director, creative & movement teacher. In her work, she seeks to address the human condition with a glimpse of hope. She lives in France & Switzerland with her family. It was through a personal crisis that Barbara realized how important it is to give oneself time to be, to breathe & to take care of our body, mind & soul. That’s when she created the Creative Dreambox: A space for creative selfcare; a creative playground. Her favorite way of creative selfcare is movement & collage-making. Barbara hosts regular creative time-outs in the South of France and in Switzerland. She loves to sing, go for walks with her dog Pinot - a lagotto romagnolo, and create collages in all sizes. I know you are going to love listening to her share about her journey, her work and the joys of creating space for others to take a (creative) break. Here are some of the resources Barbara references in the episode, along with links to connect with her on Instagram and through her website. Links: Instagram: @thecreativedreambox @barbararahelbaer Books: Les exportés“ by Sonia Devillers at Flammarion (in French) Falling upwards‘ by Richard Rohr Petit guide de médecine chinoise‘ by Misha Ruth Cohen at Editions chariot d’or Podcast: Turning to the mystics by James Finley by the Center of Action & Contemplation --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 22: Finding Your Fire with Firefly Scout's Stephanie Rose

In this episode, I sit down to talk with Stephanie Rose, Founder of Firefly Scout. Stephanie and I met about a year and a half ago through "The Artist's Way." She is an empath with a beautiful take on creativity and finding what lights you up. I know you'll enjoy this episode as we talk about her journey, why she does the work she does and some beautiful thoughts on creating rhythms and finding evidence for discovering our magic. Here's a bit more about Stephanie: "Feeling overwhelmed and waking up to the reality that her life wasn’t fulfilling her sense of WHY, Stephanie went on a personal growth journey. As a working mom with two boys, a spouse and all the grown-up commitments that come with it, she started taking moments to put herself first and remember her true self. Through a lot of intentional exploration, she became aware that she is so much more than ‘just a mom’ and was limiting herself when she let those basic life details define her. She’s taken the process she went through and packaged it up to share with all of us in the Illumination Kit and created a collection of other easy-to-use tools to inspire us all to keep scouting out all the things that light us up." You can find all of her amazing resources, including her Illumination Kit at her website: And here are 3 books she mentions in the episode: Discover Your Dharma by Sahara Rose Sensitive is the New Strong by Anita Moorjani It's Not Me, It's You by Mhairi McFarlane I know you are going to be as inspired by this conversation as I was! --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 21: Kat Renee//Painter, Story Teller & Theologian Expressing Universal Truths Through Ragged Dolls (And So Much More)

Kat Renee is an artist working out of her home, most recently located outside Dallas, Texas. With a BA in Art and an MA in Theology, Kat Renee has studied a wide range of subjects, all of which inform her artwork. She began a career as a commercial artist, but in an effort to create more meaningful art, left commercial work to focus on a personal project: a collection of paintings dedicated to the transcription of real-life experiences into visual stories. Using rag dolls as characters in these stories, she depicts each scene with specific detail and careful symbolism. Kat Renee has participated in several group shows in southern California, and is excited at the opportunity to expand to other cities. She views her art as an opportunity to understand 'truths' hidden in human circumstances and universal in human experience. In the words of John Lennon, "My role in society, or any artist's or poet's role, is to try and express what we all feel." In this episode, Katie and I sit down to talk about ALOT ... from the history of art in the church, to art as prophetic vehicle, the need to create messy middle spaces for artists of faith, why the church would do well to engage with and invite artists into sacred space and the wide breadth of the human experience artists encompass in their work. And SO. MUCH. MORE. This episode was particularly fun for me as Katie and I have been friends for over 15 years and recently reconnected around this idea of artists in the faith space and how art and spirituality are so deeply connected. You can engage with Katie, her work and her beautiful Ragged Doll series at or You can also find her on Instagram @katreneestudio. I really think you are going to enjoy this conversation. I know it did! --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 20: Creative Micro Rhythms

I recently spoke with Kathy Belge on her “Solo Women RV” podcast about the art of catching creativity while you travel. You can listen to the episode here: After talking to Kathy, I realized I wanted to bring some of what I talked about to my own audience. So here’s a micro episode for you! If you like what you hear and want more, go take a listen to Kathy’s podcast. --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 19: Do Analytical Creatives Actually Exist (Or, How Curiosity Taught the Cat to Keep Living!)

Are you a creative person or an analytical one? Ok, it's a trick question! Because I truly believe that we are all both. Where have you excluded yourself from certain spaces because you have believed you are only one thing--analytic or creative? A "numbers" person or a "words" person? And why have you believed these labels in the first place? In this episode, we'll not only take a look at how curiosity, the great equalizer, can serve us in breaking down the silos we put ourselves and others in, but we'll also walk through a couple tools to let curiosity guide us towards permission to be everything that we are without the labels and restrictions. And if you want to link to the resources I've share in the episode, I've written about them on my blog at I also reference my upcoming Memoir-in-Progress writing course, happening July 30th. If you want to register, you can sign up here: --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 18: Deana Casella: "Chasing the Moon: Travel, miracles, magic"

"Barns burnt down, now I can see the moon" -Mizuta Masahide Grab a cuppa and come listen to this beautiful conversation with author Deana Casella. After a tragic accident threw her young family's world upside down, Deana and her husband Anthony had to find a new normal. Armed with a contagious attitude of gratitude and her spirit of adventure, Deana and her family weathered some really hard seasons. And almost 30 years later, when Anthony is wrestling through a dark season, Deana has a crazy idea. What if they take some time to reconnect in one of their favorite ways: travel! The story of their adventures on a 4-month world cruise will inspire you to take your next adventurous next steps and chase the moon! Here's the book's description: "What if when at the age of 50 you had a chance to take a “gap year.”? A year off to do anything you wanted, a chance to live the life of your wildest dreams and take a trip around the world? 33,000 miles, 26 countries in 115 days This is that story. Chasing the Moon is a powerful, intimate and honest memoir about love, loss, miracles and lots of magic. About living life to the fullest and the transformative power of travel. Author Deana Casella shares her story and her travel journals from this extraordinary journey circumnavigating the world. Chasing the Moon is a collection of stories about favorite places visited, the incredible people she met along the way and the stories that were shared. But nothing is quite so simple as that. Taking this chance did not come without difficult lessons learned early in life. Lessons that taught her not to take one moment of this precious life for granted. To say yes to every opportunity. To say yes to adventure. To chase the moon." There's even a surprise drop-in by her husband, Anthony, in the episode! You can grab a copy of her book here: --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 17: You Have the Right (To Remain Silent)

Where do you, as an artist, find your largest source of validation? Does it come from others? Or does it come from yourself and your own sense of joy in doing your work? In this episode, we look at two industrial complexes: the educational industrial complex and the social media industrial complex. We see how these systems have trained us to look for external validation and how that undermines our creative flow. And we talk about some ways that we can reclaim our sense of worth! --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 16: Dark Night of the Creative Soul

Have you ever felt simply un-inspired? The old tricks to find your creative wind aren't working and you are wondering if maybe you've just lost your creative mojo altogether. Fear not! We all have dark nights of the creative soul; seasons where we feel bereft of energy and inspiration to create. In this episode, we look at what the word "inspire" really means and talk about some quick wins you can have to get some of that God-breathed creative energy back. --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 15: The Virtue Trap

“We strive to be good, to be nice, to be helpful, to be unselfish. Afraid to appear selfish, we lose our self.” -Julia Cameron. In this episode, we’ll take a look at the virtue trap and how we use it to block ourselves from actually getting our creative work done. I’ll also talk about how I have used this block and how I have moved past it. --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 14: Laugh the Devil Down

How can the Old Testament idea of Samach, or rejoicing, help us as artists to be creatively and defiantly joyful in the face of grief and pain? I've personally walked through this in a deep way. Go take a listen to the "I'm a Survivor" episode in Season 1. I'm acquainted with pain. But in that pain, I've also seen God show up in incredible ways. I have to tell the truth about both. The darkness and the light. And you, as an artist, are invited to do the same. --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 13: Why We Story

Why is story so important? As important evolutionarily as things like food and sex. And therefore, why does your art and the story you’re telling with it matter? In this episode, Jaime uses the framework of Lisa Cron’s book “Wired for Story” to talk about how we can use story to get behind the lives of the people our work serves. --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 12: Ronda Barney: Author of "Dear Susan: Letters of Comfort, Hope and Peace for Women Facing a Life-Changing Illness."

In this episode, Ronda Barney and I sit for a chat about her new book "Dear Susan: Letters of Comfort, Hope and Peace for Women Facing a Life-Changing Illness." This beautiful book invites those who have faced life-changing illness to look closely at their experience with both grit and grace. No stone is left unturned as Ronda gives language to both the hurt and hope into which anyone who has experienced deep grief has been invited. And for those of us caring for friends, family members and loved ones facing a life-changing illness, "Dear Susan" gives us the tools to help walk beside them as they process, grieve and ultimately, find glimmers of hope. In our conversation, Ronda discusses her own journey with debilitating illness and how that gave her a lens into helping others. As well, she talks about the amazing (and I mean, it's amazing) story of how she came to write the book and how God took it from letters written to a faceless "Susan" to a very pointed book written to and for (as well as shaped by) the actual Susan. I invite you to listen to this episode with a box of tissue and an open heart. And then, be sure to go check out Ronda's work at the links below! FB: Ronda Barney LLC Instagram: Website: Here is the "Dear Susan" bio to give you a sneak peak into this beautiful book! "Are you or someone you know facing a life-changing illness? When we experience the shock, the losses, and the harsh demands of pain and endless recovery, often devastation is all we see. Locked in a prison of unknowns, our hearts cry out, but the deep anguish goes unspoken as though it is our secret to bear alone. As hope dissipates, we wonder how to get through another day. Ronda Barney is intimately acquainted with devastation, hopelessness, and the haunting unknowns of illness. Forged out of her own healing journey, she was led to write letters of hope to a fictitious Susan. But, for two years, the letters laid quietly in Ronda’s journal. Then, miraculously, and right on time, she met a woman named Susan who was facing a terminal illness. Ronda began sending these letters to her new friend, opening a pathway of comfort, hope, and peace amid her suffering. Ronda is inviting you on the same journey. These letters will address the complexity of your anguish and loss while providing a bridge to finding • New joy, unconditional love and meaning • Strength to give voice to your pain • Freedom to be fully alive You can do more than just get through today. You can experience life fully alive! Come. Goodness and beauty await you, even now." --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 11: The Hero’s Journey: Setting Your Feet on the Path of Creative Risk.

It’s been one year since our family sold our house and began traveling full-time. Yes, it was creative risk. But creative risk doesn’t always have to look so grandiose. It can be one small step towards trusting that there’s something else for you. That your creative voice matters. That showing up is important for you and for the world. I mention two authors in this episode. The first is Richard Rohr and his book “Falling Upward.” At the end of the episode, I also read a short piece by Anne Lamott. If you are a writer and have not yet read her book “Bird by Bird,” I highly recommend it. --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 10: Eva Butzkies: Costume Designer, Embroidery Artist and Creative Empowerment Encourager

Eva Butzkies is a costume designer and embroidery artist. Besides creating costumes for opera, dance and theatre productions, she supports women on their way to discover and celebrate their uniqueness through creative practices. She works in different cities in Europe and is based in Basle, Switzerland. Her brand Keine wie Du can be found @keine_wie_du on Instagram and the website for her costume work is In this episode, we deep dive into the joys, challenges and multifaceted layers of Eva’s creative work. We also talk about the beautiful parallels between our creative and spiritual lives. Eva is a deep well of creative insight, inspiration and joy! Grab a cup of coffee and come be inspired. --- Send in a voice message:


Episode 9: Are you fempowered?

Do you have a tribe of other faith-fueled creative women cheering you on, working alongside you and keeping you going? This week’s podcast is all about finding your tribe. Because none of us creates in a vacuum. Creative support systems are a MUST for creative longevity and a wildly beautiful gift from God. --- Send in a voice message: