Creativity Coach - Artist Desiree East

You want to THRIVE and live in the PRESENT MOMENT. You want to CREATE THE REALITY YOU'VE ALWAYS DREAMED through CREATIVE LIFESTYLE HABITS.You want to tap into that hidden, CREATIVE POTENTIAL that is ready to be UNLEASHED to the world. When your inner voice, your intuitive heart --- YOUR creative genius --- is nourished and pampered, you know you can create profound changes in your LIFE that is the art.

Desiree East is a Soulful Entrepreneur, Certified Master Transformational Coach, Creatively Fit Coach and Visual Artist. Desiree facilitates live creative workshops and retreats, as well as, online art programs focused on personal and professional development. She inspires her clients to create meaningful change in their lives through creative ritual, using art-making as a modality for creative wellness and deep transformation (no art experience required). 

Filtering by Tag: Nusa Dua

home sweet home in bali: andree's homestay

Many of you have been asking about where we are living...well, here it is. Andree's Homestay. It's a quaint little compound, and so far, the best long-term deal we've seen in the towns that we were interested in staying in. It's not advertised, and most of the guests find this place by word of mouth. We knew about it, because our friends used to live here (Thanks, Ken and Niken!) The family and staff that live here have been wonderful, and now that we have adjusted to Bali living, we happily call this our home away from home... It was challenging, at first, to find a place that fit our needs and our pocket book. We've learned that the stuff you see in travel books and magazines were not as affordable as we expected it to be. If you are vacationing, you can spend as little as $20/night (sometimes less) for a room, backpacker style. Or you can stay at a posh resort for $100/night, and upwards, to $800/night or more for a room.  And then, there is everything in between. A lot of the beautiful villas (that I wished we could live long-term in) are catered mostly to vacationers, and as GORGEOUS as they are, you end up paying western prices...let's say anywhere from $560/week for a small villa to $3,500/week (or more) for something spectacular. Most of the high-end villas include a staff.

Obviously, we can't afford that.

On the other spectrum, you can rent a traditional house for, let's say $3,000/year --- yep, that's approximately $250/month, with a commitment of at least one year --- (at least, that's what we've heard). Or approximately, $400/month for a two-bedroom, two-bath house. Most local houses have open-air living and traditional amenities, or a combination of both. If you go this route, you are usually responsible for setting up utilities, internet, etc. on your own.

Andree's Homestay was the perfect fit for us, because it has a mix of both western and traditional amenities. The rent fit our budget (at $400/month), and all utilities and internet are included...and there's a pool! We also have security and a full-time staff on the grounds, so if there is anything we need, it's nice to know we have help.

There are a lot of things I like about Andree's: it's nice and quiet; it's located near some very nice beaches (where touts are apparently banned) and located near low-pro surf spots; we can easily drive to the West Bukit to surf more popular spots; we have a wide variety of restaurants to choose from; we have met a lot of people from different countries who are also here long term (did I tell you, we met someone from Los Osos?); and although, we are still in a very nomadic state of mind, we have made it our own...

When you travel, what is it that makes a place 'home' for you? Are you planning on visiting Bali anytime soon or are you an expert on Bali living? Feel free to share your thoughts below...

parking at andree homestay. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

view from upstairs. andree homestay. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

big fish. andree homestay. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

plants near the pond. andree homestay. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

our front door. andree homestay. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

view from our studio. andree homestay. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

elephant statue. andree homestay. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

lounging area. andree homestay. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

another lounging area. andree homestay. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

the swimming pool...essential, to cool down. andree homestay. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

it's official...we're in love

I'm gonna keep this one short. But, by all means, please keep the questions and emails coming. Our friends and family have all been asking if we've settled in; if Bali has been what we expected; if it's all that we've hoped for; if it's getting easier... Our two-month anniversary of living in Bali is here, and I can definitely say that we have found our groove.  A routine, if you will, and a very nice one. It almost deserves a Marvin Gaye soundtrack to go with it. Seriously. And I can talk for hours on end about what we did and didn't expect. I think I might save that for another post, because I will just get all philosophical about it, because that's just how I am.

That said, I have a gazillion photos to share, and we haven't even really done any touristy stuff yet. We are just getting started...so I will keep shooting and promise to share more later.

Besides, the truth is, we just bought a bunch of pirated DVD's for super cheap (my apologies to my brother, Kalae, but that's all they have available to sell here, in the malls and everywhere...and somehow, it's completely legal???), and I just want to veg out in front of a movie in our cool, air-conditioned studio...aaaahhhh.

For now, here are some photos. This is a typical day for us: wake up, stretch, eat breakfast, check the surf, paddle out, eat again, and work on business/creative projects at home when the waves aren't good --- maybe go sightseeing, if we feel inclined. And then, Repeat. It's going to be hard to leave, and I don't know how we're going to break it off to beautiful Bali gently when the time comes...

it's official we're in love. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

everyone wants a piece of the action. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

where are we? i think we were supposed to go over there... bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

surf check. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

surf check from the cliff. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

entrance before walking through a tunnel. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

loving the adventure. sea cave at uluwatu, bali. desiree east

yes, it was that big. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

shooting from shade. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

brendon fave empty peak. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

bigger than it looks. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

cute little side-of-the-road calf. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

balinese woman in red. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

diggin the freshly blended fruit juices. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

we like lemon iced tea, too. bali, indonesia. desiree east

 lemon iced tea. photo by desiree east

one of our favorite places to eat. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

balinese seafood satay. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

time for ice cream. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

chasing the bad spirits away...balinese style

following the parade. photo by desiree east How I Brought in the Balinese New Year: Part Two

Thursday, March 22nd: the eve before NYEPI 2012

After a day at the beach, we went home to get some food in our stomachs before the evening's festivities. Tonight, our goal was to see the ogoh-ogoh parade. Time to make some loud noise and chase those bad spirits away!

I whipped up some saimin. It's been our staple food, at least at home. I threw in scrambled eggs, green onions and crushed mint leaves to fancy it up. It was a quick meal, as we wanted to head out before sunset.

We had no idea what we were doing, or where to go. We just went.

My little red pay-as-you-go cellular beeped, and I checked the text message. "Hi Des, where do you want to meet?"

"I don't know, where is a good place?"

"We are driving right now...we'll let you know if we find something."

Finally, after a series of mini-texts, back and forth, a phone call comes through. "I see a huge group of people standing in line at Hardy's. I don't know why there are standing in line. But something is going on..."

moped frenzy by desiree east

So, we headed down toward Hardy's, a local market, where our friends decided to park it. (Everything in Bali is kind of word-of-mouth. No fliers, nothing online, you just have to ask around if you need any information. About anything - no really - anything.)

On our way down, we saw a large group of people dressed in Hindu attire - well, actually, half temple attire and half street clothes - and a giant purple ogoh-ogoh statue with multiple arms extending in the air.

"Oh, look...ogoh-ogoh! Stop here! Thanks, Babe." I'm such a pleasant passenger-seat driver. My husband loves it.

We found a perfect little spot to park, right behind the group. Talk about timing. They were getting ready - or actually, they were all sitting, relaxing on the ground. Traffic was still going by, but slowing down, while passerbys took quick snapshots of the statue.

ogoh ogoh with white hair. photo by desiree east

We decided to park and wait till the group decided to leave. They had to have been going somewhere, and we figured if they head down the road, they'd eventually end up at Hardy's.

So we followed them. It was pretty cool. Exciting. We have it on video. We walked down the hill, toward the bypass, following the drumming, the music, the ogoh-ogoh. Meanwhile, a plethora of mopeds and cars were still attempting to through, going the opposite direction as the parade.

It was kind of nuts, but fun and exhilarating at the same time. We came to the conclusion that they don't really close off the streets for parades. Ummmmm...kay.

As we marched behind the ogoh-ogoh, along with the mopeds and the cars, we approached one of the main traffic lights. Our village's ogoh-ogoh started to merge with the main parade on the bypass. "Look, more ogoh-ogohs!" I felt like a little kid at a Disneyland parade. Except it was different. Waaaaay different.

The group from our village turned right, and we turned left, fighting our way through a river of people and idling mopeds, to head in the opposite direction toward Hardy's. It was like swimming upstream, except instead of getting water up your nose, we were sucking in exhaust fumes.

dodging mopeds by desiree east

We finally met up with our friends at Hardy's parking lot. Yay, we made it! Their car was smoking for some reason. Go figure. Maybe it was the freon. They just got their air conditioning fixed. Oh well. Let's walk! Downstream we go...

So we walked  alongside the parade, walked through mad traffic, and followed the ogoh-ogoh madness, colorful, ginormous, statues flying high above us. We headed toward the end of the bypass in Nusa Dua - walked about a good mile, or so it seemed.

this one I like to call, 'the flying drunk one' by desiree east

At one point, I started walking through a group of people, oblivious to the fact that they were all wearing the same color T-shirts. I suddenly realized there was a giant ogoh-ogoh coming my way. Oops! The parade had suddenly come back toward our direction, and I was walking right through a group of parade people."What the...???"

You should have seen my face. I was so confused. Pure comedy.

See, this is why we need traffic control, people. You know, like traffic cones, and officers in reflective vests. Not in Bali, though. But it's okay, I kinda liked it. The chaos.

As Brendon protected me with one arm, I got pushed (gently) into some bushes in the median, while the rest of the crowd - families, kids, tourists - followed suit. Here they come...loud whistles, drums, cymbals, torches, music...and a gigantic ogoh-ogoh, flying above us. "Wait a minute, didn't I see that one already?" Oh yeah, they magically made a U-turn somewhere. That's right.

I learned later, that while carrying the ogoh-ogoh statues, they purposely stop at intersections and u-turns, and rotate the statues around in circles in order to confuse the bad spirits...??? Oh, okaaaay. Now it all made sense...

After getting our fill of seeing the brightly colored, impressively built statues, we headed back, like a herd of cows. It was a long sweaty walk back to Hardy's. The temperature doesn't drop much here in the evenings, either.

We all decided it would be a good idea to hop in one car and grab a cold beer and a grab a bite to eat. But we ended up in traffic, unknowingly getting stuck behind another ogoh-ogoh parade from another village. And then another one. To top it off, all of the warungs (small side-of -the-road eateries where you can eat local food) were pretty much shut down. After a good  45 minutes of sitting in ogoh-ogoh traffic, we finally made it back to Nusa Dua.

Was it worth all the madness? Totally.

a family enjoying the parade by desiree east

red ogoh by desiree east

flames to chase the bad spirits away  by desiree east

bright colors by desiree east

 a lion-looking one by desiree east

random and untitled update #1

bali roads by desiree east Hello from Bali! My apologies for not updating sooner, but it has been somewhat of a whirlwind since our arrival. Brendon and I are finally settling into the groove of things.

The internet service is kind of spotty, so my blogging will be pretty random until I figure out some sort of routine for it, as it seems like we get the best connection at nighttime. Because of this, I'm not sure how I will go about updating my blog. So far, I've got two weeks worth of photos and random stories to go with them.

I'm not kidding when I say random, either (because that's just how it is here, no joke). In a nutshell, I've learned quickly, that the best way to adjust to the pace of the Balinese lifestyle is to just 'go with the flow', follow your instincts, accept the blessings as they come your way, and most important, laugh off any little frustrations that might test your patience.

Like the internet connection. (At this very moment, I am frantically typing at a million words per minute, hoping that I am not cut off whilst in the middle of uploading stuff). And I probably won't have time to edit my grammar and such, so cheers to that.

Someone hand me a bintang, please.

On that note, I will archive everything the best I can by dates. Feel free to to click on the calendar (on the right, in the side bar) to see what we've been up to. My success in uploading photos will also depend on how strong the internet connection is, so...we'll see how that goes, too.

Sooooooo...what have we been up to???

For now, I will start with how our day went today...the MELLOWEST day since we arrived. Pretty uneventful, but a nice change, because we have been going non-stop for the last two weeks, while our friend Mike was here. Unfortunately, we had to say good-bye to Mike yesterday. I'm pretty bummed. No more side-of-the-road robot dances.

good-bye beers at the airport. bali.

Today, we took it easy and settled into our new place. We walked around our neighborhood. No car. No driving. No traffic. We strolled around, took our time, and went really slooow. Although, it was very hot - kind of like walking in a giantic, outdoor sauna, or a very large, enclosed greenhouse, if you will - it was relaxing. Oh, except on the main street, where we were dodging buzzing little mopeds and the occasional construction work truck making its way over dusty potholes.

entry towards our street or 'jalan' by desiree east

country road and neighborhood dog by desiree east

We walked further to see if we could find laundry service. We found a little laundry place right around the corner. You can see quite a few of them along the streets of Bali. There are no laundry mats, just laundry services. You drop your clothes off. They wash and hang them to dry for you. You pay by the piece.

It's been raining in the evenings, and it's been very humid, so hopefully, we will get our clothes back somewhat fresh and dry. It could take one day, or two days, or maybe even three or four days. We'll see. That's been our mantra for the last two weeks, "We'll see..."

laundry time by desiree east

On the way back, we stopped by the Silly Snail Cafe. It's also a base office for the R.O.L.E. Foundation (Rivers Ocean Lakes Ecology Foundation).

A Balinese woman greeted us (shoots, I forgot her name), and we attempted to communicate back-and-forth between Indonesian-English and then English-Indonesian, by using the usual hand gestures, facial expressions, and head nods.

She asked if I had any children, then in turn, I asked her if she had any. I thought she said that she had 20 kids, as I repeated after her, "Duapuluh? Duapuluh?" I vainly attempted to count to twenty with my fingers, "Satu, dua, tiga..." 

Smiling, the Balinese woman kept on nodding her head, "Ya! Duahpuluh." 

(I thought to myself, 'how cute...she is so proud of her twenty children').

But, still very confused, I looked at her petite, little frame, and I asked one more time, "Duapuluh???"

After smiling, giggling, and gesturing through a good two to three minute conversation of charades, I finally figured out that she had only one child who is twenty years old, "Oooooh, okaaaay..."

It was pretty comical. While I thought she had twenty kids, she was probably thinking, "Wow, this girl can count to twenty really well..." I think I need to hire an Indonesian tutor.

The R.O.L.E. Foundation provides education to local women and children, and offering programs that cover areas such as:

  • Women’s Literacy and Vocational Skills
  • Children’s Environmental Awareness
  • Eco-Friendly Business Start Up
  • Environmental Restoration and Waste Management Projects

This looks like something I'd love to be involved with. If we end up staying in Nusa Dua, and if I have more time, I would love to learn more about teaching/volunteering here...but who knows, "We'll see..."

the silly snail cafe and ROLE Foundation. nusa dua, bali. photo by desiree east

medicinal plants by desiree east

i heart orchids by desiree east


transformational creativity coach desiree east

Desiree East is a Soulful Entrepreneur, Certified Master Transformational Coach, Creativity Coach and Visual Artist. Desiree facilitates live creative workshops and retreats, as well as, online art programs focused on personal and professional development. She inspires her clients to create meaningful change in their lives through creative ritual, using art-making as a modality for creative wellness and deep transformation (no art experience required). 

desiree east - certified creativity coach - master transformational coaching method - creatively fit coaching - creativity coaching association.png

All images, illustrations, and artwork on this site are copyright © Desiree East unless otherwise noted, and may not be edited, reproduced or sold by any party without written permission. You may have permission to distribute and share posted articles and content, although credit would be greatly appreciated. If you would like to purchase or license any images, illustrations, or artwork, please contact Desirée East directly for more info.

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