Sunday, January 27, 2008

I WON!!!

I am so excited to announce that I was one of the winners of a contest put on by fellow blogger Dayna at A Bug's Life. Her blog has become one of my must reads lately. She details the lives of her family which includes children born with a chronic illness. As someone raising two children with different illnesses myself, I feel connected to her in many ways and have enjoyed her writing. So the other day, when she decided to offer up the chance to win a game that she and her family enjoyed...well...I could not resist. She asked people to write in and explain why they would like the game and, in addition, to choose another family to give the game to as a gift and explain why you chose them also. This is the game...

and it looks like a blast. In our family, in particular, we are always looking for fun activities that promote family togetherness and also allow everyone to participate. So many games that please my very active 6 year old are not really geared toward my wheelchair bound 5 year old.

Unfortunately, I did not win the original contest that also gives the gift of a game to the family of your choice. I did win one for us though and I am very grateful for that. The family that I chose to receive the other one was a family that I don't know personally but met through another on line friend. They recently (like days ago!) lost their 4 1/2 year old son to cancer and they have 3 other young children. I really thought that, as they try to rebuild their lives after this devastating event, this game would give them something not only for fun but to open up the lines of communication. That said...I think that I will still purchase one of these games for them and have it sent down to them as a gift.

So Thanks! to Dayna and Thanks! to Jeff and Thanks! to the Memorable Mealtimes company who made this contest possible. We are so excited for our game to arrive!!

And now...the results in the Pinewood Derby race last night were...The car Mega Six, built by the Peanut and Dad, came in 22nd out of 45 cars. Pretty good I thought for our first race.

It was a fun event and even Bubby got into it after he realized that his girlfriend from PreSchool, Ally, was there. Here they are watching the race. So cute! And here are some more race photos...

Peanut and a friend cheering on their cars!

Dad at the finish line...what a cute finish line judge!!

And then there's to explain this...I was workingn in my office yesterday when I heard a funny noise so I turned around and there it was...nuff said...

Have a great week everyone!! I hope to get back to some creative stuff...

Tuesday, January 22, 2008's cold up here! We live just outside of Chicago and let me tell is cold out there. The wind chill dropped to -20 the other night which is just not fun. I thought it was too good to be true a few weeks ago when the weather was in the 60's up here. That is just not normal for January but was a delightful break from winter. Now we are back in the thick of it and freezing our tails off. I guess the up side is that I don't mind staying in and getting things accomplished.
My children have been off of school for the past two days so I have been doing more family type things (like baking) than artist type things but I still have a few items to show from the weekend. Yesterday I started a cool series of self portraits that I plan to hang in the new basement. I am providing canvases and advice to everyone and asking them to paint their own portrait. So far S and my friend Brenda have completed theirs and I will get some photos up here soon. I plan to cover an entire wall with these fun paintings.

I have several new paintings in the works for the basement. That was the only up side to a forced remodel is that is gave me the ability to redecorate. I will post some pics here as things come together more. I am hoping to have most of it finished before the big Lala paloosa!

And now...introducing...


I met Cliff yesterday in my basement. It seems that he is a spy that has come to reside in my home. I heard about all of his daring and brave adventures and how he kidnapped my son S. He is a bit of a mystery man about the house. If you see him!

Here is a preview of some of the things I have been working on lately. I will have this pillow up on Etsy shortly.

This bag is a cool little girl size. I love the funky fabrics. It is part of the new line of Children's clothing and accessories that is brewing here in the Studio. I won't be listing those items until I have completed the entire line so look for them in the springtime.

And now I am off to bake some cookies, paint, work on a pinewood derby car, clean up my house, make some hats, buy football tickets and clean my studio...all while keeping my 2 year old from causing bodily harm to herself or others. Wish me luck...

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Already forgotten...'s the 15th day of the new year and I am sorry to say that I have already blown most of my resolutions. I think it is amazing the hope that comes with a new year. The wistfulness and joy that come with the chance to start over again. It seem so fresh and so wonderful at the time. But then, life intrudes and suddenly, you are back to the old bump and grind with nary a thought to the wonderful goals you set for yourself in the beginning. Maybe that is how God feels about creating the world sometimes. "Wow, this is such a wonderful beginning, everything is new and beautiful and it has a chance to be so much." and then poof "What the heck happened here??".

As I read the news lately I find myself wondering "What has happened here?" a lot lately. The world seems a whole lot scarier for some reason, especially since I have had children. It is like these little people come out and you have to protect them so suddenly everything looks a whole lot scarier than it did before you had anyone to protect other than yourself. Can you tell it has been a hard day!

But on to brighter topics...I got a chance to visit with my friend Stephanie today over coffee which was wonderful, and as I listened to her talk about the "ministry" that she is creating for battered women and how she longs to be successful so that she can empower other women to be successful as well, I realized how very blessed that I am to have such wonderful women for friends. Each of them is so different, each with their own strengths and weaknesses, and each brings a different kind of joy to my life. Stephanie said today, "My plan is to be rich so that I can give to others to make their lives better. I want every one of my friends to have what it will take to make them a success in the world." The other day I was visiting with my friend Brenda who said "I wish I could just win enough money to be comfortable and to help you guys build the house you need for Austin." (for those of you who don't know, my 5 year old son is in a wheelchair as a result of a vaccine gone wrong) And I sat here tonight thinking that I don't really need to be rich, at least not that kind of rich, because I am so rich in the love of the people around me. Of course I would love to have enough money to give my son a shower that he could actually use, don't get me wrong about that, but mostly tonight after hugging and kissing my children and thinking about my friends, I am feeling loved. And, not to be corny, but sometimes it really is all you need

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Two in one...

Who knew it was possible...two posts in one week. But it is the new year after all. Today was a day of good news. My good friend who thought she might have cancer was deemed "cancer-free"...Yeah! I had some terrific responses to the direction that my business is going now (more on this later). And, most of all, my kids were well behaved and I got almost everything done that I needed to. Whew...
I took some interesting photos around the house yesterday and thought I would share them with you. I have been trying to figure out more things on my camera since I have had it for months now and am still doing the point and shoot thing. I know it can do so much more so here goes...

My crazy daughter...look at those cheeks...nuff said...

Thought this was an interesting shot.

And my crazy gang...this is the scene in the boys bedroom every night. Ella thinks that she can just sleep with them and it is a big fight to get her into her bed. They love it though.

So I had this idea the other day and I have been playing around with it ever since. It has me pretty excited for the new year and I couldn't sleep last night with all of the creativity going on in my brain. Of course, it is in the early planning stages but I will start sharing some shots in the next few posts. I think it will be a fun addition to my already crazy life!

And now, a while back someone sent me an e-mail that challenged me to come up with 10 things that I liked about myself. These things could not include my husband or children. The idea is that we, as women, just do not spend enough time thinking positive thoughts about ourselves. We are quick to criticize ourselves for so many things but we just don't focus on the positive as much as we should. I took the challenge and it was a little bit harder actually than I thought it would be. But I did it and even challenged some of the women in my life to do the same. I said I would share mine so here they are...
1. I am creative.
2. I love children and animals.
3. I tend to put others needs ahead of my own.
4. I am able to accomplish a lot in a short amount of time.
5. I feel compassionate toward others and can empathize with them.
6. I am a pretty good cook.
7. I do not judge people by what is on the outside.
8. I love deeply and completely.
9. I try to be honest in all things.
10. I have cute feet. (don’t ask)

If you have not done should give it a try. It is a nice way to start out the new year on a positive note. And now...on to my new project!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Happy New Year!! has been a long while. A long busy while. I looked back on my last post and realized that it was before so many things. Before the tornado that took out our trees and our basement.

Before my son's really cool reptile birthday party which required planning for the 80 people in attendance.

Before Halloween, which was so much fun for all this year. This was the year my daughter figured out that Trick or Treating meant CANDY. Oh the joy of it all.

Before the Holiday cluster which was nice this year...not too much stress but lots of little colds at our house.

And is the New Year.

Last year, in the midst of having my entire basement torn apart and drywall dust covering everything in my life, I swore that this year would be different. You know how it is. This year I will be thinner, healthier, make more art, spend less money, etc, etc, etc... But most of all, I swore I would write more in this blog.
I am excited to report that our basement is almost finished. I am just setting up the studio/office again so that I can get busy producing and listing some items both on Ebay and Etsy. I feel like I have been so out of touch with my creative self in the last few months so it will be great to get that back at least. And I am anxious to share more photos of the kids who are growing up before my very eyes and are just a riot these days. it first post of the New what I hope will be a solid commitment to post often. Thanks for all of the positive feedback and e-mails in 2006. You can also leave comments here by clicking the comment area after the post. I love to hear from you all...
And here's wishing you and yours and Happy and Healthy, Thin and Wealthy, Wonderful 2008!