Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Pacifica in Pictures

Following up on the post I made last evening, I present to you: the pictures I took while in Pacifica, CA. Not nearly as many as I would have liked... funny how, looking back on things, you always would have done it differently. I wish I had spent more time studying and enjoying my surroundings. These pictures are fond memories nonetheless...

And lastly... a photo of the Golden Gate Bridge, just 10 minutes away!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


No pictures this post, but I'll make it short and sweet.

For a brief time (3 months), I lived in Pacifica, CA? It's just 10 minutes outside of San Francisco. Anyway, the place has never left my heart. There is a certainn poetic grace, an artist's muse to it all, if you will. It is perpetually foggy, which adds to its unique charm. It rests directly on the beautiful coast of the powerful Pacific Ocean. It is characterized by a famous long, "L"- shaped boardwalk/pier where, on a good day, one might receive a visit from a San Fracisco seal, who swam a little to escape the tourists visiting Alcatraz and the Wharf.

My small literary soliloquoy here does not do Pacifica justice. It really is an amazing, inspiring ocean-side town well worth getting to know.

Monday, December 12, 2011

A Drawing Progression

So, for those of you who don't know, I'm a Home Health Aid currently. I work every weekend for a wonderful 98 year old woman, who is in great shape, despite her age.

But this past Saturday morning when I came in, she was in bed. Upon closer inspection, I found her foot was swollen. A LOT. So her granddaughter and I brought her in to the emergency department. Thank God, she was ok. They never found out why the foot was swollen, but it wasn't sprained, broken, or a blood clot, so they released her.

We were only there for a few hours, but while the granddaughter went back with her for tests, I stayed in the main area and began working on a drawing. I am becoming increasingly more interested in sketching, so I looked at some reference material and began this. A lot of it is improvised, and it is by no means perfect, but for a first attempt? I think it came out rather well. It should also be noted that I did it all in pen, without any preliminary pencil marks to erase. So any mistakes I made I had to work with. :) What do you think?

And I finished my painting for my son! Here is the finished product:

Sunday, December 4, 2011

To Paint Is...

So my wonderful son David is turning 16 in a few days. I would love to be able to give him a store certificate or something, but funds are really tight. So I figured I'd work on something that I hope he'll really appreciate... a small painting from my heart to his :)

What do you think so far? I'm painting it from this photograph:

This is the slow progression:

To Paint a Painting...

So, my wonderful son David is turning 16 soon, and I'd love to be able to give him a store certificate or something, but funds are really tight. So I figured I'd work on something that I hope he'll really appreciate... a small painting from my heart to his :)

What do you think so far? I'm painting it from this photograph:

Here is my work area (lol):

This is the slow progression:

I think I can do the trees fairly easily, but it's sure difficult trying to get the water to look realistic... but, the fun continues! Hopefully, it'll turn out good :)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Emotional scars seem to take longer to heal than physical ones. We think about where we went wrong... what we could have done differently... that we just should've known better!

God doesn't think that way. We beat ourselves up. He forgives. He is, after all, a loving Father.

Sometimes we forget how close He is. We should try and remember more often.

Yes, we make mistakes. And yes, those emotional scars hang on, and often continue to hurt.

But God is there. He is our comforter. None of us are perfect. He already knows that. That's why He sent us Jesus, to bear our sins upon the cross.

That doesn't mean we are free to sin willy-nilly! It means that instead of the punishment we deserve, we now have a way of redemption for when we do slip up.

That way of redemption? Jesus. Do you know Him as your personal Lord and Savior? Maybe it's time you did. Those emotional scars you have? NOTHING compared to the physical ones He endured on the cross... for YOU.

Pray to Him. He's waiting for you with love. Tell Him that you've done things wrong. Tell Him that you need His forgiveness and that you believe He is who the Bible says He is... the Son of God. Invite Him into your heart... and mean all that you say. Then begin going to a good church and learning more about Him. Your life will never be the same.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Adventure Walk!!!

Having two little children so close in age makes individual time difficult. Kyle is about two and half now, and Jubilee is 18 months. :)

Today Mom was home, so I left Jubilee with her a while and took Kyle out on an Adventure Walk!!! We went into the woods and tromped for an hour and a half through brambles, along paths, around trees, through marshy areas, etc. You get the idea. He had a BLAST. We have deep woods near us, and this is only the second time I've taken him back there (the first was in early Spring). We went a different way this time, and discovered some things we'de never knew were there!

We had a really great Mommy-Son time, and I wouldn't trade it for anything. They grow up too fast...

Saturday, November 26, 2011

This Crazy Weekend! :)

OK, so yesterday was Black Friday and today, I believe, is "buy from a local small business day". LOL. Don't know about tomorrow, but then Monday is "Cyber Monday", where you are supposed to get deals from buying online.

Well, who am I to not jump in on all the hype? I'm offering 20% off any purchase in my shop from now until midnight Monday. Come visit and see what you like HERE.

Just use code: SMBF7212 and happy shopping!!! :)

And don't forget to enter my awesome giveaway which ends Dec 1!!! See the easy details HERE!!!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


I have been illustrating basically all my life. From desk tops and school books in elementary school to commissioned walls for Christmas in Jr. High to wall posters and newspapers in High School. I loved it. It was who I was. But I never really knew much about the "Art World", or art history, until I got to college. That's when I became really "introduced" to art. From Warhol's soup cans

to abstract sculptures, the high standards of the Renaissance to the hard work and immaculate detail of people like Frank Lloyd Wright and Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

At first I was shocked. Certainly, there was a lot of art that was clearly "art"... good design, well-thought out pieces. But there was other art that was, well... shocking to me. Shocking that it was called "art". See, I was always told to follow my talent. If I could draw, then art was the obvious avenue for me to persue. If you sing good? You'll be a singer. Work well with tools? Then you'll make an excellent architect. You get my point.

So you can imagine my surprise when I at last began to learn about art and the vast myriad of what is considered "art". Standards change. Artistic styles fluctuate nearly as rapidly as fashion trends. A child working hard to hone their sketching skills to perfection has to struggle to find their place amongst new "ideas"... like this:

"Odalisk" by Robert Rauschenberg

So, you can see that what the majority called "art" was really not what I expected. It seemed that provacative or crazy stuff won out over true drawing skills. Put a rooster on a box? You end up in a museum. Draw a person's face in perfect detail? You end up on a street in Manhattan, trying to get people to pose so you can sell a drawing to pay your rent. Talent no longer seemed to hold the weight it did back when I drew "wonderful" pictures in school.

Alright, I've gone on enough... weigh in, please. I know I'm not the only one out there with an opinion :)

And don't forget to enter my awesome giveaway for DailyRepose for this wonderful prize!!! Just click on the pic to go to the giveaway! :)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Let's Hear it for Handmade Soaps!!!

Welcome Everyone!
The other day I received in the mail several soap samples from a wonderful seller on Etsy. I had been eagerly anticipating their arrival, and when they did, I couldn't wait to try them! As I opened each one, I was rewarded with an amazing scent that directly corresponded to the name of the soap. And upon using them, I was so happy with the lather AND cleanliness that each one delivered. I was very impressed with a paper she included that told how to care for and use the soaps, and each sample had the ingredients posted clearly on a card packaged with the soaps.

Obviously, I was so impressed with her soaps that I had to ask her if she would like to have a giveaway on my blog, and she agreed! So, without further adieu... I present to you,

The Interview

(Me) "Do you want people to have to follow your blog in order to enter the giveaway?"

(Shelli) "I don’t have a blog but ‘liking’ my Facebook page would be great! Or ‘liking’ my Etsy shop."

(Me) "Do you do any other soap-making process than cold-process? If so, which is your favorite, and why?"

(Shelli) "I only do Cold-Process soap making. The whole cold-process just feels more natural to me and I love the fact that it takes less electricity use compared to other methods. It does take a lot longer for my soaps to cure. Cold Process soaps take 4-6 weeks to cure, but they are worth the wait."

(Me) "How did you first become interested in soap making?"

(Shelli) "After becoming aware of the dangers in the ingredients of commercial soaps and wanting to further my commitment to a more natural lifestyle; I looked everywhere for soaps that were Vegan, Eco-Friendly, Gmo- Free, Palm Oil- Free and made with real ingredients. I quickly realized that the only way to get soap that met those criteria was to make them myself."

(Me) "What is your favorite scent/soap to make?"

(Shelli) "My favorite soaps have always been the 100% Natural Soaps, the ones with no artificial colors or fragrance. I love the ones made with real teas and herbs. I also make 98% Natural soaps because so many people want a scented soap. They are made with the same ingredients as the All Natural bars, but have Phthalate-Free Fragrance and a small amount of colorant added."

(Me) "Do you do any other crafts?"

(Shelli) "Oh my, yes! I also love working with paper, which is why each individual soap label is handmade. I also make scrapbook pages, scrapbooks, invitations, tags, greeting cards, wrapping paper, decorative wreaths, and do some sewing. I am now learning to crochet, being taught by my mother who follows no patterns (just her needle, yarn & imagination)."

(Me) "Soap, like any other craft, is an art form. What advice would you give to others? What is the most important lesson you've learned while on your crafting journey?"

(Shelli) "Just let go and create. Don’t worry about what the outcome will be. If you start overthinking things or feeling frustrated; it’s time to step away and take a break. I’ve learned that you just can’t force creativity."

(Me) "What's next for you?"

(Shelli) "Well, honestly I don’t know. I try my best to be in the moment and since my creative process is a bit Mad Scientist meets Martha Stewart, I never know what will come next, but there will always be soap!"

Wonderfully said, Shelli! Now for the Giveaway!!!

Brown Sugar & FIG Soap Bath Hand Bar SCENTED Vegan- Handmade-Cold Process- Palm free Soy Free-Gmo Phthalate Free

ONE lucky person will win the soap above, plus Shelli will throw in a free soap holder! She will mail directly to the winner via First Class mail. The giveaway will run from Nov 1-Dec 1. On Dec 1, a winner will be chosen at random from all the posts below. Please leave your email address so I have a way to contact you. If you are not comfortable doing so, please come back here on Dec 2 to see if you are the winner. If I do not hear from the winner, a new one will be chosen at random.

Here is what you need to do:

Mandatory Entry:
Become a follower of this blog. Then visit Shelli's Etsy Shop. Come back here and leave me a post letting me know that you are a follower (or have become one) of my blog, and what is your favorite item in Shelli's Etsy shop.

Extra Entry:
Visit Shelli's Facebook and like it. Come back and leave a comment saying you've done so.

It's as easy as that!!! Trust me, you WANT to win this soap... it really IS amazing. I love it, and I know you will, too!!! Good luck, everyone!!!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

I LOVE Being Creative!

Hello everyone!

Quick post today to let you know how I've been coming along with my crafts. Everyone loves to do crafts... there's just something so fulfilling about working hard on something, and then having it turn out to be something you're proud of. :) Yay for all of us who are creative!

So, I was looking through my craft supplies (here is a pic of just SOME embellishments I have...)

and I came across a piece that I'd completed a while back that I had deactivated from Etsy. Well, I took a good look at it, and I really still love the way it came out, and chances are more than likely that if I like it so much, others will, too. So I relisted it tonight! Here it is, my

Steampunk Butterflies Repurposed Jewelry for Your Hair

I remember making that piece was a lot of fun. Steampunk to me is a very interesting and intriguing style that keeps growing. I also like SOME Victorian... lacey patterns, but not huge heads... sometimes, it goes too far. LOL.

I work with a 98 year old woman (God bless her!) who lives in a retirement community. Every one who lives there has little shelves for decorative purposes outside of their respective apartment doors, and a lot of people put out candy in little bowls for tomorrow. The lady and I went around to these apartments and took a little candy. She asked me if it was stealing. I said of course not... they put it out for us to take. It's not for "kids", as no kids are allowed to live there. She is so precious and cute, the woman... she's an angel :) Anyway, I'm not allowed to post a pic of her, obviously, but I can of the candy!

And last, but certainly not least... I'm working on more magnets! I'm really liking the way these ones are coming along... any criticisms? They're always helpful!

And please don't forget about my wonderful giveaway!!! You still have time to
enter :)

Friday, October 28, 2011

Etsy Down??

Is Etsy down?? *Looks around quickly* What am I going to do?

...maybe use my stamps?

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Catch YOUR Eye?

Happy Thursday! I have been doing a little peeking here and there around Etsy on my off time for some interesting shops, and here is one particular that I've found that not only deserve a mention, but high praise, as well!

It is RandomlyGenerated, where you can find a wide array of very well-done peg people. Peg people, you ask? Yes... you read me correctly. But not just any peg people... there's peg people from the most popular movies, tv shows, heck, there's even a Ziggy Stardust David Bowie one! But I can ramble on all I want, you'll never get why I'm so excited about them until you SEE them... go take a peek! They've got everything from Ghostbusters to Galaxy Quest to Star Trek!!!

On a completely different note, I have found that (especially as the Christmas season draws nearer) that I have many products that I simply don't get to use. For example, most of my ACEOs (Art Cards, Editions, and Originals) are hand-illustrated originals, so I don't really get to use my stamp collection, although I've got a nice one, and many are wooden.

Well, I can't believe I actually posted a blog without pictures, but sometimes I think if you truly want to see something, then you have to go look at it. Seriously, take a look at the above Etsy shop... you'll be glad you did :)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

This Little Light of Mine

Some days are difficult. That's just the way it is. Today I found myself a bit under the weather. But you want to know what perked me right up? I began singing "This Little Light of Mine" to my baby girl, Jubilee... and it really improved my mood. That's why the Bible tells us to "put on the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness"... a lesson maybe we need to apply to our daily lives more often?

So after that, I was more motivated to take pictures of my latest creation, and to get the computer out so I could list it. Here it is, my first "official" Christmas item!

It is a Sculpey Polymer clay magnet that I titled "Christmas Frost". You can see more of it here.

If you are wondering, the above Bible passage was taken from Isaiah 61:3... a VERY uplifting read!

Have a wonderful evening, everyone!!!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

What to Write?

I've been waiting all day in eager anticipation to write on my blog! Should I write about my kids? Or my latest art project? My favorite time of year (Autumn)? My favorite show, Dancing with the Stars? My mind is all a jumble with possibilities, but yet when I actually set fingers to keyboard, I draw a blank...

Nothing lasts too long anymore... on my birthday, which was Oct 10, I took my little kids (Kyle, 2 & 1/2 and Jubilee, 14 months) out for a walk. I bought them each little pumpkins (gourds?) as an Autumnal memento. Today, I found that Kyle's was mushy and white in spots :( Anyway, here is a pic of them the day they got their gourds.

They are getting so big. I am amazed at how fast time if virtually "flying" by... I know it says that in the End Times, that the days will be speeded up for the sake of the elect. Does anyone believe that we have entered the End Times? I know many probably thought they were in them when horrible things happened, like the Great Depression. But I'm really curious, does anyone believe we're there yet?

I've been trying (emphasis on "trying") to balance my time between every thing else and creating. I've been working on magnets and some really great ACEOs that I'm proud of. It's so good when you spend a lot of time on something and it comes out great. Too often I'll work hard on things that fail my expectations. But try, try again!

Here are Kyle and Jubilee the other morning, enjoying their breakfast :) I love them so much... I could write endless posts about them and only them... but I won't ;)

Well, before I forget, don't be remiss in entering my Giveaway! Go check it out :) And every one, have a great evening!!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Just a Moment...

...of freedom. At work currently, but wanted to stop in for a moment and show you all what I'm working on next. Opinions, as always, are always encouraged! :) Hope every one is having a great day!!! OK, take a peek: they're Polymer Clay magnets!

Friday, October 21, 2011

ACT Team Water Birds Submissions!

It has been too long, but finally, here are the submissions for the ACT Team "Water Birds" Inspiration contest... please, as always, email me your choice, 1, 2, or 3. :) I hope many of you vote! Here are the submissions... voting ends on Nov 11.

Please email me at: and let me know in the subject line that you are voting for the ACT Contest. Thank you to all of you who participate!

Wonderful Giveaway!!!

Yay! It's time for a really great giveaway that you're going to love:

No, the giveaway is NOT for the baby, she's MINE! LOL :) It's for this wonderful Lampwork Necklace from Halcraft USA! See?

It is a necklace that you make yourself! What a perfect gift (Christmas is coming!) for that special loved one... a beautiful necklace that you made yourself! Take a look at these beautiful beads...

This do-it-yourselfer comes with easy to read (and understand!) instructions and a list of everything that comes with the necklace. The only thing that does not come with it is the center pendant (they want you to buy one seperately), but it's such a beautiful necklace, you don't even need a pendant!

So, what do you have to do in order to win? It's simple! So many giveaways have detailed and time-consuming things to do in order to enter, but not me!

Mandatory Entry:

Become a follower of my blog and leave a comment indicating that you are. You MUST also leave an email address or subsequent way to contact you, so I can let you know if you're the winner! :)

Additional Entry:

Visit my ETSY SHOP
and check it out, then come back here and write a second comment letting me know what is your favorite item in my shop AND why.

See, told you it was simple! :) The giveaway ends on Friday, November 11, 2011. That still gives you plenty of time to create the necklace and get it ready to give to whomever you wish (even if it's to YOU!)