Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Answer for Randy

Randy, you just left me a comment asking about my shelving units... they came from Costco! They are metal and look like a big deal to put together but they are not. A girlfriend and I were able to assemble them ourselves! They are awesome! Thanks for the comment!

Range of emotions

I'm having an odd range of emotions today. This would have been my 25th wedding anniversary. A huge milestone in a marriage. I am feeling both sad that it isn't that day of celebration, as my divorce was final in Sept. last year, and relieved, all at the same time. I'm learning to live "in the middle" of such extreme emotions, accepting that both are true. Grief and relief mixed together. I think I'm feeling much like one would feel walking through something like cancer with a loved one, over a long period of time, and then losing them. So deeply sad to have lost and so relieved at the same time. The suffering is over. Well, actually, the suffering is only over on a certain level. The affects never go away... the trail of pain remains. It's what is done with it that makes all the difference. I continue to pour my heart out to the One who knows everything about me, who loves me unconditionally, and never leaves me. God knows my complex emotions and thoughts and carries me through.

Just this past week, I asked myself a couple of hard questions.
1. What am I afraid of that keeps me from the feet of Jesus?
2. What do I want more than Jesus... what really keeps me from him?

Well, my list was a mile long for the first question. For the second, I only wrote down two words before I was completely stopped in my tracks. Security and control. Plain and simple. In a life of feeling very afraid and insecure and everything seems like complete chaos, those are two things that I find myself striving for. But Jesus gently reminded me of this IMMEDIATELY upon writing those two words down: My security comes in believing that HE is in control. Ahhhh.... I can firmly stand on this truth and trust that no matter how crazy everything in my life looks, feels, and is, NOTHING got by my God. He is not taken by surprise. What an incredible comfort. I'm choosing to believe in His love, protection, and provision for me as I continue to walk through deep waters. And as I look for His presence in my present moments of every day, I'm overwhelmed with gratitude and joy. Yes, that peace that passes all understanding is MINE!!! I don't have to know what is coming next (although I honestly would really like to! ha!) but I trust He knows and He will walk with me through it, whatever it is, no matter how bad, not matter how crazy and scary. Thank you, Jesus!

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you," declares the Lord." Jeremiah 29: 11-14

I'm believing in my future and I'm seeking....


While I still have more work to do organizing and cleaning in my studio, I am making progress. see?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Mark your calendars!

For Sunday, March 13th. From 2-5 I will be teaching another Altered Composition Notebook class so if you missed the one hosted in my home a few weeks ago, now is your chance to jump in. Only this time, it will be at The Creative Quest! All you need to bring is a jar of rubber cement glue. I'll provide everything else! Call the Creative Quest at 623-847-2215 to sign up and join me for this fun class! These altered composition notebooks make awesome journals and fantastic gifts!

Also, at the store THIS Saturday, The Creative Quest will be celebrating it's anniversary! I have put together a few samples of cute fabric flower pins as a $5.00 Make 'N Take. Everything is provided for you to make a flower of your choosing. I am putting together a wide variety offabrics, trims, buttons, etc... to create a one of a kind pin. Great to add to your outfit, hat, bag, etc...

My boys spent the night with my mom last night. I got up early and hiked with my girlfriend and am back to day #2 of cleaning out my studio. As you can see, it has been the room of doom... no room left to work.
I am making great progress. I took some of my work to a local store called Ecocentricity, this past week, to show them and see if they would be interested in carrying pieces to sell. The owner wanted everything I took in and then some! So I need to kick in high production mode and get some more things to her and also for a couple of other local stores I want to work with. Ecocentricity focuses on showing work from local artists, especially those who recycle and repurpose materials. They also do consignment for resale on items and offer ecological alternatives for various things. I'm excited about some ideas that came up in my conversation with the owner. I need to make some time to meet again and explore these ideas further. What is cool is they also donate part of proceeds to help with homelessness! How cool is that?! So, if you are local and have not ventured into this little treasure of a store, it is located at 137 W. McDowell on the south side of the road.

OK, cleaning/organizing break is over. Later!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

OWOH: And the winner is.......

Leslie from http://leslie-mylifeandtimes.blogspot.com/!!!!
Congratulations Leslie! And thanks to everyone who visited my blog and entered my drawing!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Beaded Prayer Totem

I am offering a new class in my home on Friday evening, Feb. 18th from 6:30-10 pm. I'd love for you to join me!

Beaded Prayer Totem

For centuries, in many different cultures, beads have been associated with prayers. In this class, we will create something beautiful as a reminder of those prayers which we will write and encase in small beaded prayer pillows. Our pillows will then be mounted to form a totem. This class will be very relaxing. The beading process is very meditative. We will make 5 prayer pillows to our totem. The totem itself will measure approximately 6 inches in length without the hanger and beaded trim. These also make a wonderful gift of blessing to someone close to you.

This is a very relaxing project to work on. Very meditative and therapeutic. I do hope you will be able to join me!
The cost for the evening is $25.00. All other supplies provided. ( but you may want to bring a pair of scissors.) You will also receive a complete instructional handout to take home. Snacks will also be provided for the evening.

Please r.s.v.p. as soon as possible as space will be limited.

*If you have cat allergies, please know that I have three cats in my house. If you are interested in the class and cannot come, please contact me to schedule a class in your own home and invite friends to join you!

I'd appreciate it if you could please pass this on to other creative friends who may be interested in this class.
Hope to hear from you soon!

On another note: Registration for CREATE retreat starts tomorrow! I'd love for you to join me in Costa Mesa at this awesome retreat! Head on over and check it out! Click on the icon to the right!

Sunday, February 6, 2011


It's that time again... actually, I'm a little late getting on the bandwagon for this, the last year, of the One World, One Heart give away. Sorry for the delay! To find the full list of all bloggers participating this year, go here. If you want to find more about participating yourself, check it out here.

My offering this year will be this:

My miniature wall hanging measures approximately 3x5 inches. If you would like to be in the drawing for this handmade item, you must be a blogger. Please leave a comment and CONTACT INFO! That part is very important! I can't mail your prize if I can't find you! I will be using a number generator on Feb. 17 to choose the winner of this sweet felted heart wall hanging.

Since the purpose of OWOH is to connect bloggers around the world, I know I'll have many new readers visiting so, I'll tell you a bit about myself and hope you'll come back and visit often!

I'm a single mom of two boys, ages 9 and 11. We also have three cats, all boys. I'm surrounded! I'm a mixed media artist who enjoys watercolor with pen/ink, acrylics, fiber art, book binding, photography... and just about anything else in between! I really enjoy teaching art. I teach locally at a store where I also work part time as well as at Art Unraveled art retreat. This year, I am excited to travel out of state to teach for the first time at Create in Costa Mesa! I also teach art to home school kids once day a week. When I'm not doing art, teaching art, caring for my family, or involved in a church activity, I am cutting hair or serving food to the homeless and poor. My life is very full and very busy. I also enjoy hiking and yoga. A bit of silence early in the mornings is golden in the midst of a lot of busy.

I hope you come back and visit here often!

A different point of view

I have often posted photos of the sunrise but today, I'm posting one taken yesterday morning from a bit of a different perspective. I took this photo from inside my house instead of outside. I love the way the pieces of cut glass in my front door reflect the colors of the sunrise each morning. This is usually the draw for me to run and look out! I glance at the front door and see the color through the glass like this and head for the window for a better view.... then often out the front door with camera in hand! Beautiful, isn't it?

I wasn't on the schedule to work yesterday so I was able to go to Prodigal's home a little bit later and stay for the whole morning. I spent probably 2 hours in the kitchen washing dishes! As food was served to the many homeless and poor, trays and large pans were brought to the kitchen to be washed. There is no running hot water so a very large container of hot water with a valve is set up to do dishes. Funny, people think that helping feed the homeless means standing out with food yet sooooo much goes on behind the scenes for it to ever happen. Volunteers arrive about 5 a.m. One man, Owen, starts making pots of coffee. He literally stands at two coffee makers making coffee for TWO HOURS to fill the large thermal containers so everyone can have warm coffee when they arrive. What a gift to those who have been out in the freezing cold all night! The smile on Owen's face never leaves the entire morning and he serves from behind the scenes, making coffee and cleaning up, mopping floors at the end of the morning, helping put supplies away. There are numerous people just like Owen, who show up every morning to set up tables, set out napkins and utensils, put food out, cook food, unload and set up clothing offered, and musicians there singing each morning. All this besides those there to serve plates of food to those cold, hungry, weary, and rejected by society. There is no line to stand in for them. The come, sit, and are served as if they were in a restaurant, out in a parking lot! Oh, then there is all the clean up and putting away of supplies in a storage unit! This happens every week. Truly, it's such a simple way to make a difference. No special talent is needed to make a huge impact. It's a beautiful morning.

I then got to go see the little house they recently purchased that is now under construction for remodeling. It will be a safe place open 7 days a week, during the day, for the homeless to come shower, wash their clothes, get a warm bowl of soup, see some cool art, listen to music, and have help filling out government papers and such. A prayer garden will also be put in the back yard. I'm glad I will get to watch the entire project be birthed. Right now, the house is a mess and the entire back wall has been taken out with plans of expansion.

I went to Scottsdale on Friday and visited a new up and coming art place. Fun art offered for sale as well as classes of all kinds, not just about art! It's called Jam. If you are local, check it out!

Yesterday, I had a highly emotional afternoon but later ended up going out to downtown Glendale for the "Chocolate Affair". A huge festival that happens every February. I did not go for the chocolate, however, since I do not eat sugar but, I went to check it out for a possible art vending opportunity. A monthly art venue will be happening down there and yesterday was the first so I wanted to see how it was going, what kind of art was being offered by other artists, etc...
I am looking for places to sell my work as well as teach so I'm going through a list. The tough thing about Scottsdale and Glendale is that since they are different cities, I would have to acquire tax licenses for both places. It begins to be expensive to hold tax licenses for all the surrounding cities. Not just paying the taxes on items sold but having to purchase the license. I need to think through and make sure that I'm choosing a venue where I can recoup my money and make a profit or, I'm in a city with multiple opportunities to sell. Unfortunately, here in the summer, all that shuts down so you have to crank during the nice months. Since I already have a Phoenix license, I need to investigate other opportunities here in my own city. This sounds a little funny. You'd think I'm driving way to other cities to look for possibilities when, in reality, there are so many cities surrounding Phoenix as part of "The Valley" that you have no idea when you drive out of one into the other. From the sky, it looks as if it's just one enormous city! They all just run together.

Anyway, I'm trying to gather information to move forward with my art as a career. It takes courage, is slow going, and I want to be wise with my choices. Financially, I'm not in a place to take risks so I have to be especially careful.

Well, need to start getting ready for church. Hope everyone enjoys their day!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

A must have

I am reading THE best book by Ann Voskamp. It is called "One Thousand gifts: A dare to live fully right where you are." I cannot get a picture to load or I'd show you the cover. Follow the link to get your own copy to see and read more about it. It speaks to my heart causing me to feel like I have no air in my lungs, completely breathless it leaves me. I have been reading Ann's blog for a long time and I'm often stirred to tears at what she writes. Rarely have I ever read anything by such a gifted writer as she. Poetic, raw, emotional, deeply thought provoking. She awes me and causes me to see God in a different way. She challenges me. She makes me uncomfortable. She makes me take deep breathes having someone put to words the deep longings in my heart that I have never been able to articulate. I'm so thrilled to have won her book in a give away. It is a must read. Seriously. You can get your own copy here.


Registration for CREATE opens Feb. 8th!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!