Sunday, December 28, 2008

Merry Christmas

Ok, it's a few days late...but since I'm having a hard time moving on from the holiday season, better late than never. ;) We spent a lovely week-and-a-half in Arizona visiting my mom for Christmas. We took a trip up to Flagstaff to sled in the snow, we baked cookies and hung around the house in our PJ's all day--it was a wonderful, restful, joyful vacation to say the least.

My mom's tree was decorated in old wooden, hand-painted ornaments from my childhood. It's funny how the little things will bring back a flood of memories from Christmases past.

I was looking forward to a break from the cold, winter weather we were experiencing back home, but it was actually COLDER in Phoenix...crazy weather! But we did have plenty of days of sunshine and bright, big, blue Arizona skies with syrupy, neon orange marmalade sunsets. (No photo! Insert imaginary sunset *here*)

Even managed to get some art journaling in at the airport while we waited to embark on our journey and again once we arrived at my mom's house. I was inspired by the wonderful art in the new Art Journaling magazine.

We're back in California now, enjoying the mild winter weather (no snow!), getting ready for Christmas part 2 and 3 (one for us and the kids and another with my dad and stepmom). The sparkling string of lights on my porch will stay lit until January 1 (and probably will stay up for the next 6 months, until I remember to take them down!).

Christmas only comes once a year, who says we can't make it last as long as we want? ;) Curl up with a hot cocoa, peppermint stick and listen to the music from A Charlie Brown Christmas. We can stay in denial for a little while longer, can't we? ;)

Merry Christmas and Happy 2009!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

“When the Cat’s Away…” Daily Giveaways

Happy Holidays!

I love giveaways! :) I just had to share this with you...Alpha Stamps, one of my favorite places to go for inspiration and unique art supplies is having daily giveaways from December 27, 2008 through Sunday, January 4th, 2009. All you have to do is leave a comment on that day’s blog post by 11:59 pm (PST).

Check out the details at:

Happy creating!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Getting ready for the Winter Performance. Maya's class sang two sweet songs. The theme was Peace Around the World. (Pose was her idea--cute little foot pointed back!)

Playing with wintry shadows and light in a little corner of the playroom.

Our house minus the overgrown trees! Let the sunshine in! (Palm trees means you know your'e in California!)

Kelsi and Mo hangin' out on a bright, crisp December day.

Monday, December 15, 2008

And Speaking of Inspiration...

Check out Susan Tuttle's new book: Exhibition 36: Mixed-Media Demonstrations + Explorations
It is full of inspiring projects and lovely, wonderful, amazing art by a variety of artists. To celebrate her new book, Susan is hosting a give away on her blog--one lucky winner will receive a copy of the book! Just go on over to her blog and visit this post, follow the instructions, and voila! You may be the lucky one.

29 Days of Giving

With the holidays fast approaching, it only seems natural that we are filled with the spirit of giving. Of course, we should be giving year round, but I know, life gets in the way and we tend to forget and move it down on our "to do" lists. I'm gulity, too--no worries. ;) But it doesn't mean you can't start now. Today. There is always room to give. Spread the love!

I stumbled upon a blog entry of artist Chrysti Hydeck and I was inspired to share this experience. Take a minute to visit and read and be inspired to share with others. It involves many generous and lovely give-a-ways, but it isn't just about "getting stuff." It's also about sharing your thoughts and inspiring you to give a little of yourself as well.

I was talking with Raul today about how at first it seemed that technology brought people closer together (faster transportation, communication, etc) but at the same time it can also push us further apart (email versus snail mail, phone call versus an unexpected visit, talking on a cell phone while sitting with your best friend at lunch, etc). But overall, I think it has brought us closer together and made it easier to connect with one another because we share a common interest or curiosity. It gives us a chance to see people in other parts of the country that we might have preconceived notions about as human and like us rather than keeping up barriers and prejudices that separate us. Same goes for learning about other people in other parts of our world. It gives us a chance to see each other in real time and to read real words written by real people who we have so much in common with even if we don't speak the same language.

I feel connected to a large community of artists just by posting here every once in a while and visiting other people's blogs and websites. But I also have a need for real life connection, too. That's what lead to my adventures at Artfest last April and what inspires me to take that journey again this April (even though I will be 8 months pregnant by then!). The need for human interaction also inspires me to meet once a month with a lovely and talented group of ladies where we exchange ideas, gifts, stories, laughter and make art.

I hope you will also be inspired to reach out to those that inspire you and make time to connect with others that share your passions. Making art is so much fun and it is so wonderful to be able to share it with others, too.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Christmas is Coming...

I really do love this time of year when the air turns crisp and cold and sometimes the sun peeks out to warm you up when you really need it. Fall has come and gone with a few leaves lingering on the trees. With the scorching temperatures gone (for now) I can pull back the curtains and let the LIGHT in! Our house is full of an enchanting warm glow during the sunlit hours of the day and, like a cat, I move from room to room following the sun for warmth and light. We got the trees trimmed in the front and back of the house and it makes for even more wonderful, light-drenched rooms. The leaves protect us from the scorching summer heat and in the winter, they draw back their shades to let the light pour in! I'm loving it. ;)

For the second time in my crafty life, I participated in a craft fair! But this time I learned my lesson and I bought affordable supplies that I could transform easily into delightful works of art. Last time I did this, I opted to learn several new crafts and the laundry piled up to the ceiling! And the kids ate cereal with water! (ok, it wasn't THAT bad. Good thing dad's the cook in the family. I just provide the basics and do the shopping. Funny side note: We were all watching tv one day and a commercial came on that showed a smiling mom carrying out a hamburger helper casserole out to her family sitting around a perfect dining room table. Maya turned to me and Raul and in a serious but inquisitive tone remarked, "Moms can cook?".) Ok, so craft fair. It was fun and it gave me the confidence boost I needed to prove to myself that I can make a living from my craft. :)

I wore my butterfly earrings out yesterday and got many compliments from friends and family. "Wow, you made these?" Yes, I did! :) And it was fun! I do have the goal of having my own Etsy shop up by the end of this year. Well, I think it's just around the corner, even if it's not technically launched January 1, 2009. ;) But big things are on their way. I just know it.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Hats Are a Good Thing

Maya when she was three went through this funny "phase" where she loved to wear hats. But not everything she wore on her head really qualified to us "grown ups" as hats. But she wore them anyway. In public, too! To the store, out on afternoon walks through the neighborhood. She is a fearless wearer of things that others might be to shy to wear out where others could see them.

She still loves to dress up in cat ears and dog masks when we go to Target or walk around the block to the bagel shop. Once, while wearing her plush dog mask on a shopping trip, she made several children giggle, moms and grandmas smile and coo, "awww, how cute" and a grown man jump in surprise when he exclaimed, "Oh man! I thought that was a stuffed animal and then it moved!"

We had to stop off at the post office after a birthday party one day and she still had the party hat on. But instead of wearing it on top of her head, she stuck it right into the middle of her forehead. "Do you want me to fix that so it's on top of your head?" I asked. "No, it's ok, " she said, "I'm a rhino!"

Be fearless. Wear something funky on your head today. Or mismatched socks. Or bright orange underwear. Just something different and out-of-the-ordinary to celebrate the creative and weird. ;)


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