Friday, January 30, 2009

Photo Friday: Costume

Just one of Lia's more creative outfits...
Lia Playing Spy

June 18, 2008

Thursday, January 29, 2009

TiLT: Things I Love Thursday

It's time for the FAMILY EDITION!

Jacqueline: Diana (awww that's me!), my children, fruit...
Antonio: Lots of things, especially computers, Wiis, PS3s, X_Box 360s, Legos, electronics...
Esme: Care Bears, my online friends, Pullips, Arion (he's a Tae Yang), Dals, horses, bubble gum, Brendan...
JoAnn: Computers, pink - the color, shoes, animals, Brendan...
Lia: Bratz dolls, Care Bears, CANDY! Bubble gumm too, Brendan, and Sasha...
Bunny: head skritches, Antonio, things to sit on like warm clean laundry and piles of paper or books, attention, running water...
Allie: fresh water in my bottle and cucumber peels!
Me: The universe granting me time off when I really need it, getting the messages I need to hear when I need to hear them, surprize packages in the mail, SUZI BLU (omg she rocks!), old photo that bring back good memories, finding new artists' blogs for inspiration... Have I mentioned my girlfriend & family lately? They're always on the list...

Things I Love Thursday is brought to you by Gala Darling...


I can't believe it! I've been featured! Mind you it's on a site I rarely go to, but do have an account and recently uploaded some new work to: Talent Database's Art Channel (Warning" the pages load SO SLOW which is why I rarely go... high frustration for me...) Anyway, feel free to check it out, and if you want to comment over there, you can make a fan/enthusiast listing, you don't have to be an arr-teest! LOL!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Give Away! One World, One Heart

ETA: Comments are now closed, winner to be chosen soon!

OWOHFrom January 9th (sorry to have not posted this sooner; I just found out!) to February 11 people all over the world (seriously, check out the list on the right!) are taking part in a little giveaway. The idea behind the giveaway is for artists all over to meet each other and find some new friends! I've added a bunch of great blogs and I can't wait to read more!

Of course, I've decided to join in and offer my own little giveaway!

I'm offering two prizes to two winners. The first is this adorable bunny (molded); about 1.5" in diameter, and mounted on a blue snow storm, it would make the perfect addition to any winter outfit. Or I can add a magnet to the back, instead of a pin or pendant, and you can pop it on your fridge or file cabinet to brighten your mood wherever!

The second is this soft, petal-pink rose, hand sculpted, on a matching heart, also about 1.5" from leaf tip to leaf tip. Again I am able to make it into a pendant, brooch, or magnet. Just let me know when you order. Let this pretty pink piece chase away your winter blues, or show someone you love that they are special.

Here's how it'll work:
  1. Leave a comment here on this post stating that you want to be entered. Let me know your prize preference: [bunny or heart] and [pin, pendant, or magnet]

  2. Be sure to include your email or blog address so I can contact you if you are a winner.

  3. On February 12th I will randomly choose, using's Random Number Generator, and announce the winner here on the blog and contact you via email or your blog.

  4. That's it!
PLEASE MAKE SURE I AM ABLE TO CONTACT YOU! Some people have left comments with private blogger profiles and no email address, and I have no way of contacting those people if they win. Please make sure when you comment that I can reach you if you win or I will have to choose another winner... :(

Goals etc...

It's hard to feel like you're capable of getting anywhere when you keep getting blindsided by stupid colds. I take all the necessary precautions, why do I feel like the only teacher who keeps getting sick??? Why can't I just suck it up like others and function with a cold...??? Bleh...

Anyway, I've been doing a lot of reading about goals lately - well actually I've not been seeking out things to read, they've been dropped in my lap, or my inbox, as the case may be... Monday, was not only Chinese New Year, but it was also the New Moon, and there was a partial solar eclipse and some planetary influences that made it a powerful day for sending your intentions to the Universe/God/Goddess. So everybody seemed to be talking about it...

Christopher Witecki from talked about lightcasting your request to the universe (when meditating you listen for messages, when lightcasting you speak), and Gala Darling picked up on that and said, " can do it anywhere, whatever the occasion. You don’t have to sit down cross-legged with a flower in your mouth, trying to balance a crystal on your head while visualising spinning each chakra simultaneously. There are no rules, just do what feels good to you. You can visualise while you’re spinning a hula hoop around your body, while you’re doing the gardening, while you’re walking to work. All you really need to do is make some time to focus on what you want, while at the same time experiencing the feelings you’ll have when you get what you want, like exquisite joy, bliss, happiness, etc. The more you think about what it is you want, the more these feelings should build up inside you, so that you feel like you might burst. Allow yourself to let these feelings wash over you in an awesome wave."

Then Aby Garvey of Simplify 101 sent an article on Goal Setting with five way to remove the fear and mystery around setting goals. The very first one was so important for me to hear; it was Tuesday, and I felt like I had lost my chance to take advantage of the powerful forces moving in the universe, yadayadayada, and would just have to wait... But here's what Aby said:
Now is the Right Time
You don’t have to start a diet on a Monday, and you don’t have to set goals on January 1st. Today is the perfect day to get started with goals. Yep, you can start on a Tuesday at the end of January—even if you’ve never in your life written down a goal before now! (I’ll tell you how to get started in just a minute.)

The truth is, there is never a perfect time to create change in your life…there’s always going to be something else vying for your attention. But setting goals is especially empowering when you are facing a life transition such as job change, or you’re heading toward a big birthday, or you’re feeling somewhat stuck or uninspired. Goals will energize and inspire you, putting you back in the driver’s seat of your life.
That's right, it doesn't even matter that it's now WEDNESDAY and even another day later than the day of the New Moon, and a Monday, and everything else...

She goes on with these four bits of advice:
It Starts with Exploring What You Want which is not always easy! I fell into office work and then was lucky enough to be able to quit and explore several options before deciding to be a teacher. I've gone through school, and am now teaching, and am finding that even that is not what I wanted to do. So again, I am questioning what it is that I really want out of life...
You Deserve What You Want! and she summed it up most eloquently in this statement, "When you are living your life on purpose and spending your time on things you love, you are enriching the lives of others through your joy and happiness."
Failure Is Not an Option because each mistake you make along the way is a lesson, an opportunity to learn and grow. You only fail when you give up trying.
Action Makes It Happen and here she says to pick you goal, then find one thing to move you toward that goal and do it. Rinse. Repeat. And continue to do so until you reach that goal!
Which brings me BACK to Gala Darling! She is going to have the second annual iCiNG Transformation Challenge starting February 1st, which is an opportunity to achieve a goal that you have been trying to reach, but haven't as of yet. Last year, Gala exercised daily and ate 100% raw; others quit smoking, created more art, changed their diets, worked on their relationships... all kinds of transformations!

Anyway, she is going to be posting all kinds of inspiration on a daily basis (which you can get right in your email by subscribing) and suggested reading this article called "13 Wondrous Ways to Wahoo Your Way into 2009!" to help you plan for whatever changes you want to make. I'm not sure what goals I'll be making yet, but I will definitely be following along and posting here about how it's going. Feel free to join in if you want, or just follow along here! ^-^

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Etsy Blogger of the Month: Rose Works Jewelry

Beautiful jewelry for beautiful women... yes, every woman is beautiful, and this jewelry is just as lovely. Look at this piece, which she even is offering to customize!

And this one is just screaming for me to buy it...

Don't forget to check her out and see what she has that might be calling to you...

Valentine's Day

So the Blog Carnival this week is about my plans for Valentine's Day, and I have the worst memory. I dunno, I used to celebrate every little thing... Then I got married, and my husband's blasé attitude about everything kinda rubbed off on me, and it's been hard for me to get excited about anything any more. However, having a family, with kids who get excited about EVERYTHING, really brings back my own enthusiasm! Last year we had so much fun! We all made Valentines and had a special extra sweet dinner... ^-^

This year I am hoping we get to do the same kind of thing. Handmade Valentines, spending the day with my little family, yummeh foodz... ^-^ I might even wear this... Assuming no one buys it...

Let Your Heart Take Flight

Monday, January 26, 2009


To sick to blog properly...

Heading to work...

Home from work...

Happy Chinese New Year!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Self Portrait

I am so damn proud of myself... *blush*

my first self portrait
I should have checked the photo one last time before I called it finished; I think it needs more shadow under the eyes and side of the nose. And I see all my other errors too, but I love it anyway! Look, it's got glitter!!!
my first self portrait
photo reference
I am sure you've all seen this before...
photo reference

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Love Stories

I was just about to ask something to a friend, when I realized I'd love to hear the answer from everyone! Especially since Valentine's Day is coming up, and the season of love and all...

My friend mentioned that one of her recently posted photos was taken from her honeymoon in May, and since it seemed so recent, I wanted to know the story of how she & her husband met and fell in love and got married... I realize not all of us have spouses or significant others, but I'd still love to hear any tales of love you might want to share, happy or sad, romantic or platonic... Maybe your love story doesn't even involve another person! Perhaps it's the story of coming to love yourself or discovering your passion...

So, share your love stories with me?

Friday, January 23, 2009

A Few Quotes

Where shall we get religion? Beneath the open sky,
The sphere of crystal silence surcharged with deity . . .
The midnight earth sends incense up, sweet with the breath of prayer --
Go out beneath the naked night and get religion there.

~Sam Walter Foss, Nature and Religion

If that which you seek, you find not within yourself, you will never find it without. For behold, I have been with you from the beginning, and am that which is attained at the end of desire.

"I was struck by the simultaneity of darkness and light, of the tall buildings and the long shadows they cast at sunrise, of the homeless on the street corners where limousines awaited their well-heeled occupants, giddy after a night of partying. I witnessed the polarity but I sensed within it an extraordinary wisdom. Everything in the world was far from perfect, but there was something enlightening about the energy about the energy inherent in this chiaroscuro contradiction: The darkness defines the shape light assumes, negation expresses the possibility of what should be. In knowing this, I realized if we are ready to see the unseen - if we have the courage to face the shadows we normally seek to avoid - we can create what could be. In the face of everyday tragedies, the very possibility of healing and transformation made my heart sing."
~ Pyllis Curott, Book of Shadows

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Sweet 16 Layouts

So I finally did some scrapping. I had found all those old pics (OMG I just found 2 more boxes!!!), and wanted to do a few pages. The first was for a telephone challenge on one of my scrapping groups. TONS of fun! The 2nd is the flips side of the page. Yeah, I could have done a 2 page spread, but I didn't want to... :P

Sweet 16

Sweet 16, Page 2

FAE Team Exhibition: Love at First Flight

Please go visit and see our work!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Leftover Photos

No idea what to do with them? You know the ones I mean, the one where Uncle Al had his dentures out, the out-of-focus blurry ones, the ones of that random place you can't remember anymore... heck... maybe those pics of your ex? Of course you could just toss them - or burn them in a moving and freeing ritual - but how about repurposing them? Taking those trashy old photos and making them into beautiful art... Sound intriguing?

Then you have got to check out this little tutorial: Upcycled Photo Tutorial. So easy and fun - and to think, we all once had issues with cropping! XD

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Why I haven't scrapped...

I got distracted...
Sorting Photos
Sorting Photos
Yes, those two drawers are full, yes, the table is covered, no, that's not all of them...

Friday, January 16, 2009

TiLT: A Day Late & A Dollar Short

Things I Love Thursday is brought to you by Gala Darling, of course she posts hers on time! LOL!

Calls to work in middle & high schools, because the kids are awesome!

Selling things in Faerie Garden Fancies and having someone request that I make more right away!

Finding pictures I thought were lost forever...

Having wonderful art supplies to play with whenever I want

I have a warm bed to snuggle in at night... and half the day if I feel like it!

Mash-up Songs: United State of Pop 2008 (Viva La Pop)/DJ Earworm, GHv2-Thunderpuss Megamix/Madonna, and Sweet Dreams Vs Without Me/Eurythmics vs Eminem to name a few...

Random Exclamation!

I figured out how to follow blogs here! Watch out, people! Whee!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Monday, January 12, 2009

Dragons again...

Look! The egg from my dragons is now a baby!

Adopt one today!

Aren't they the cutest family???

Adopt one today! Adopt one today! Adopt one today!
Gundisalv, baby, and Anna Belinda...

Monday Bunday

Today's bunnies are soon to be the latest additions to Faerie Garden Fancies!

Bunny in a Red Scarf
Bunny in a Red Scarf

Brown Winter Bunny
Brown Winter Bunny

Grey Winter Bunny
Grey Winter Bunny

Today's Sketch

I drew this in school today - I had way too much free time...

Frog & Fairy
Frog & Fairy
Pencil sketch on plain computer paper, overlay added in PSP for color...

Friday, January 09, 2009

Elephant Sanctuary Pair

Ok, MAYBE I am a little overly-emotional right now, but this made me cry...

Elephant Sanctuary Pair

Watch CBS Videos Online

Photo Friday: White

Since I am waiting for AAA to come jump the car again... >.< (Guess I need a new battery... Or to move south...)

Our Back Yard, 1/8/09

Thursday, January 08, 2009

TiLT: Things I Love Thursday

'Tis time once again to recognize all the things that I've been lovin' on this week. As those of you playing at home already know, TiLT is inspired by the lovely & inspirational Gala Darling...

Sun on the Snow
A grand way to welcome the New Year!

Sun on the Snow
The Moon in a Blue Sky
She never fails to stop me in my tracks...

The Moon in a Blue Sky

Ice on Trees
Freezing rain can be beautiful...

Ice on Trees

Lisa Frank's Bunnies
I wish we could still buy them...

Lisa Frank's Bunnies

Shelf of Happy Thoughts
Shiny, sparkly, happy people!

Shelf of Happy Thoughts

Disrespectful Snacks
At least it was honest with its feelings...

Disrespectful Snack

Magic Wands
No matter the size...

Magic Wands

Smiley Mugs
Leftovers from the 70s!

Smiley Mugs

Honorable Mentions: Subbing for a great teacher with a great class; Snow days to ease the guilt of not wanting getting a call to work; Neopets; clean desks; drawing; the car still works; the cop didn't tow it; Celestial Seasonings Holiday teas, dragons...

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Dragon Stuff!

My dragons...

Adopt one today!
...named for a wise fog spirit from Nordic mythology...

...and Anna Belinda...
Adopt one today!
...named for the Latin Anna meaning favor or grace and the German Belinda meaning beautiful serpent...

...have mated! Adopt one today!

Please click?

Mostly Wordless Wednesday



Sunday, January 04, 2009

Cleaning off my Desk

Did you know that the second Monday of every year is Clean Off Your Desk Day? I didn't. I came across this tidbit of information while, what else? Cleaning off my desk. Tomorrow I may be returning to the world of work, and Tuesday I am for sure, so my goal for today was to get rid of the piles that had been on my desk for far too long. As I cleaned, I realized that many of the papers fell into 2 categories: things I was hoarding (lined paper, folders, notebooks...) and things I should have filed or taken care of long ago (pay stubs, district calendars from last year, odd bits of paper with web addies or other things to look up online...).

So, I parted with some of the things I had been hoarding - the kids are always asking for paper and will use it more than I was obviously - and I went through a bunch of papers, tossed some, filed some, took care of others, and found a place to store the things I really do plan to use eventually (a few notebooks and folders, stickers for my students, etc.). And while I was sorting things out, I came across a fun ditto for the kids, which explained that "One day in January is called Clean Off Your Desk Day..." Of course, I needed more information.

Apparently, the creator of Chase's Annual Events had a horribly cluttered desk, and his daughter, with whom he shared an office, requested that he clean it off at least once a year and added it to his calendar. Thus the tradition was born! This year it falls on Monday the 12th, but obviously I've started early.

So here's some quick tips from the experts:
  1. Only keep things on your desk that you use everyday! Stapler, scissor, paper clips... If you don't use them every day, find some place off the top of your desk to keep them. Even if you do use them everyday, perhaps the top drawer, front & center, would be a good place to store them.

  2. Organize things in a manner that make sense. If you're right-handed, you'll probably want to keep your pen cup on the right, and your phone on the left, since you might need to write while on that call. But if you're like me, maybe you turn to the left when you're going to write, and keeping the pencil cup on the left makes more sense. No matter how you organize your things, make sure you leave the middle clear. That's your workspace!

  3. Keep your similar items organized together. For a crafter like me, that means all my scissors are together, all my punches, all my paints, all my papers... erm... mebbe not all my papers, but in a perfect world... In your world, maybe it's your phone, message pad, and rolodex all kept side by side.

  4. Use an inbox only as a brief holding station. Make sure you go through it at least once a week, if not daily, and empty it out. You can use a separate box for things that need to be filed, but make sure you keep on top of that as well or you won't be able to find what you need when you need it. You may also want a third box for out-going papers, and when you need a break wander them off to where they go: recipes to the kitchen, magazine to the living room, paperwork to another department...

  5. Here's one I disagree with: Remove distractions. They say to move pictures, little toys & knick knacks, and candy off your desk to minimize distraction. I suppose this may be true in an office environment, but at home? I prefer to have my desk area filled with the things I love and that foster a sense of creative play. I have bubbles, I have dolls, I have matchbox cars, I have pictures of my friends and family, I have a Magic 8-Ball for making those difficult decisions... But the experts suggest that photos should be placed to one side where others can see them, and where you can also if your not working, less distracting. Little toys lead to you playing and not working, which results in less productivity. Candy invites others to interrupt you, and invites you to snack all day too - at least in my case! So use your own judgment. I prefer to have the candy as far away from me as possible, but keep the other distractions around. Maybe in your workplace that wouldn't be such a good idea...

  6. If things have gotten really bad, it may be time to do the old Clean Sweep. Grab three boxes & a garbage bag and start on the top. Label your boxes and start sorting: Important or Urgent, for those items that need you to take care of ASAP; Can Wait, for those things that just need filing, or other attention, but aren't so urgent in nature; and I Dunno, for the things you just aren't sure of. I use a big question mark. Of course, throw the garbage in the bag. When you're done, take care of those urgent things, then go back through the Questionable box and sort it out again. Lastly, take care of the less urgent box.
Some helpful sites:

Friday, January 02, 2009

Fancy Nancy

Last night I got very cross. I have a lot of worries and no control over them at the moment. So I was very grumpy and trying not to be, because I know the people around me are *not* the cause of my frustrations. For some reason I was up very late and couldn't concentrate on the book I am reading when I got into bed. So I went searching for some lighter reading. I found Fancy Nancy by Jane O'Connor, illustrated by Robin Preiss Glasser. Yes, illustrated; it's a children's book, but let me tell you: Every book should have as much glitter on the cover - or more! - as this book does! And it's a beautiful iridescent glitter too. That alone helped alleviate my mood. Or perhaps it was my conversation with Jacqueline.

Bunny: (spoken sternly, remember I was grouchy) This book is *covered* with glitter!
Jacqueline: (looking for a solution with positivity) I'm sorry. Do you want me to scrape it off for you? I could glue it back on before we return it.
Bunny: (still gruff) No! Why would you want to do that?
Jacqueline: (almost laughing now) Well its presence seems to offend you...
Bunny: (sulkily) No. It's embossed on and I *like* glitter.

Or something like that anyway... Absurd!

Then I read the book. Obviously the book stars Nancy, who likes to make things fancy. Tiaras, feather boas, jewelry, bows... The first thing she does is make her room fancy, and it just reminds me of what I used to do... And still try to do, only a little less chaotically. Flowers, posters, lights, color, dangly things... And her favorite color is fuchsia (a fancy word for purple) and she even has fuchsia hair mousse (it's on the grocery list!). So many of the things she does resonate with me...

However, her family is a little boring: jeans & tees, very little color... So she gives them fancy lessons and gets them all fancied up! In celebration they decide to go out to eat all dressed up. It's so silly and wonderful and magical! I won't give away the details, but there is an accident, and Nancy wants to go home. And when they do, Nancy gets into her bathrobe and looks. Just. Like. Me! And the end of the book is just so sweet...

More books need to be written like this! More glitter, more fancy, more sweetness!

And it improved my mood...

Thursday, January 01, 2009

TiLT: 2009 Edition #1!

Yes, it's time for another Things I Love Thursday!

AAA memberships - they've saved my @$$ on more than one occasion, and we're waiting on them again...
Lia's effusive joy and Ant's interminable patience
My mom, who loves me no matter what, who I can talk to about anything, who helps me more than she knows...

Zelda: A Link to the Past; yeah, I am addicted again...
Burt's Bees Beeswax Lip Balm - mmmmm... Minty-goodness!
Paints in a rainbow of colors

Have I mentioned my girlfriend lately? Because she is peachy keen! ^-^
Heat in the house! Man it is COLD outside!
That man who just came and jump started my car! Thank you!

New Year's Eve Party

No not mine... We did have fun though! Special punch to toast the New Year in, and watching the ball drop on the internet...

But the real point of my post is to join in the party they're having over at The Roost, where everyone is gathering to post their Favorite 10 Photos from 2008. But you know me! I couldn't pick just 10! So I decided to pick one from each month, and I couldn't even stop there! LOL!

So without further ado, I give you my Top 10 Photos of 2008:

January 08 was cold of course, but there were birds at our feeder! Here I've captured a blue jay and a chickadee...

February was spent primarily indoors. This is picture of Bunny one afternoon when Jacqueline & I were scrapping...

March was still very cold, but the sun on the snow & ice is always so pretty...

April brought the first flowers! This one looks about to kiss the sky...

This one was taken Memorial Day. Emma was showing the Esme & JoAnn her new camera...

By June we were finally swimming and loving every minute of it!

Flat Rock in July, our favorite time & place...

Me, August 2008. Lots of twilight swims during the summer for us...

Our sunflowers got a late start and didn't start blooming until September! This was one of our favorites...

A twilight walk in October at Sterling Nature Center, look at the gorgeous poison ivy growing up the tree!

The November moon, always a beautiful sight...

Just this month! Lia climbs up Ant's snowman while Ant shovels off the roof...

BONUS! I couldn't leave these out no matter how hard I tried to stay to 10 12...

Ten ran away from home this fall; I hope it's not because I made her share the seat with me...

And Saten passed away not long after. He always did the silliest things for such a dignified old man...