Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!

I love New Year's Eve! No, I do not go to parties (I think I might be anti-social). I stay home and watch movies, eat and sip bubbly. I hug my kids a lot (which sort of annoys them) and the DH, too :). I count my blessings and try to ignore the landfill that my house has become (kids home from college, friends of kids home from college, teens, pets, Christmas, me, DH...). I usually fall asleep before midnight.

Yes, I am a barrel of fun. Thank you for noticing.

Here is my New Year's wish for each of you: time. Time to be with your family and friends. Time with your pets. Time for yourself, for your art. Time to just be, and to enjoy this funny little planet we are riding around on.

Happy New Year, and thank you so much for your friendship in 2009!

Monday, December 28, 2009

At least it's creative clutter...

My 'studio' is really a work area in our bedroom. It consists of two tables pushed against some old bookshelves, with enough room in between for my chair. I also have another little nook where my sewing machine lives. I would show you the tables and the bookshelves, but there is Christmas wrap and laundry everywhere (that's my excuse for this month, I'll think of a new one for January). Instead, I'll show you the table tops and what I am working on right now. Yes, it is extremely messy, thank you for noticing. :)
You can see the Experimental Doll did NOT blow up in the oven (whew!) and is patiently awaiting her turn with some paint. I'm also made another doll's head, because I only had 3,999 unfinished projects and I wanted an even 4,000. The other table has more unfinished projects! There are some cut out plushies: a fox, the Love Monster and a gnome. Oh! And I see a painting I never finished (you can just see her umbrella!). And there is my bag of aquarium gravel that I use to weight some of my dolls (of course, you need to have THAT out 24-7). For inspiration I leave out my super cool heart pin-cushion I snagged at a thrift store for three bucks, and some paper mache skulls from Michael's I never got around to painting.The bookshelves hold all my children's books (I have far too many), and reference books I use. They also hold all sorts of other random things, including plushies I have purchased from etsy artists, old toys from my kids, and random thrift store purchases.Evidently I like to tape little drawings everywhere.I'm working on several little heart paintings. These aren't finished, I have to add all sorts of flame and skull goodness to them. Anne, I think you can tell which one is the one I am making using the fabulous supplies I won from your blog! :) If I ever get the rest of the area cleaned (don't count on it), I will show you my robot toy collection and even more unfinished projects. For now, I will return to my cave and paint hearts and sew Love Monsters. After all, Valentine's Day is coming!

PS The adorable Mr. Toast is on etsy at yummypancake. :)
PSS The equally adorable grey monster with the blue horns, named Louie is from Dkoss2.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

It was very merry...

Early morning chaos followed by a slothful evening's peace. It was a wonderful Christmas.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas, Renee

What an amazing year I have had. I've tried to make a go of my little art venture and finally found the courage to blog. I have been blessed with another year with my DH and my kids. A dear friend of mine from my Topanga years has endured a battle with cancer, and shown me grace under fire. These are Christmas gifts aplenty, but I have made new friends this year. People I have never seen, but who I check with daily. Whose lives I follow as if they were my lifelong neighbors. How wonderful is this? I am never lonely as long as the internet is up and running. :)

There is one friend who has, without a doubt, changed me forever. If I could bottle up the essence of Renee, it would have to include these things: unfailing courage, kindness beyond measure, a wicked sense of humor, intelligence, and above all things, a love of family and friends.

Because of Renee, I have remembered to hold these things high in my heart, and to forget the other million things I obsess over (my weight being one :). Because of Renee, I have met other amazing people who have renewed my faith in humanity.

So thank you, dear Renee. I wish you a Merry Christmas (free from any bats). I wish you a day surrounded by your loving family: good smells wafting in from the kitchen, old songs and memories floating on the air, happy chatter filling the rooms, your family near and your grandkids underfoot. Thank you so much for the gift of your friendship.

A Merry Christmas to each and every one of you. I hope you are with people you love, and if you are not, and are alone on Christmas day, I am sending you a big hug (complete with free shipping!).


Sunday, December 20, 2009

Let it snow!

We got a ton of snow! 22 inches!! (okay, those of you that live where it snows in 'feet' every winter stop chuckling).

It is very beautiful. Deep and crisp, and even.
Sophie got in touch with her husky roots. She flopped down in the snow like it was a comfy old couch.

Luna wasn't too sure about it at all.
Lucas and I tried to keep the bird feeder clear, because we love those little guys, and it's hard for them when it goes from green and grassy in the backyard to solid snow in one day.

Last night we trudged through the snow to our next door neighbor's for a Christmas party. I have a new respect for our ancestors, who had to deal with winter, and without the benefit of snow blowers. On the way back, the DH took these lovely pics of the lights covered with snow. And welcoming us home was our little snowman who was nestled snug in his snowy bed.
Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Experiment Doll gets ready

I don't know why this is, but when I have a million things to do, I decide that it's the PERFECT time to start a new project. Maybe this is my way of trying to enjoy the season, and slow down time, since for some reason it is barreling by at warp speed. Maybe it's because yesterday afternoon the house clutter (although it is cheerful clutter: wrapping paper, gifts, bows, boxes, greeting cards, unwashed laundry - haha snuck that in) just about made my head explode. Or it could be that wrapping for three solid hours fried my brain. WHATEVER. A new project it is!

For some time I have been meaning to actually use the super sculpey I bought last year (or was it the year before?). I've been tinkering with the idea of making some dolls with clay faces, hands and legs, and soft bodies. I have no idea how to do any of this. I joined Cloth and Clay Dolls (thank you Lori!), which does have tutorials, but I don't have any money yet for those (Santa? Listening?). I spent some time on youtube looking at very helpful videos on how to make dolls, and then I did what I normally do: ignored it all and started playing!

Here is a doll-in-the-works, I have dubbed her Experiment Doll. Since she is my first, I'm not too concerned with how she looks (but don't tell her that). She might blow up in the oven after all. haha. This one is to get the kinks out (btw, I'm cackling like a mad scientist here).

So if you see a beige UFO sailing past your window, do not be alarmed. It's just Experiment Doll going on a ride into the great unknown!

Ho ho ho!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Spooky Time Jingles and a cup of cheer

I am a little late showing you my work for Spooky Time Jingles. That's because yesterday was my anniversary (22!) and between that and a few other holiday chores, I didn't get to my blog. Instead I had a lovely dinner out with the DH. I had lasagna and a great chianti and could barely move afterwards.

So here are two new sugarplum fairies. Bonbon (on the left) is in charge of tasting divinity fudge and caramel. Jujube (right) works in the New Candy Products (NCP) department.

I decided to sew a gnome home. It's made from the bits and pieces that I have squirreled away from other projects. Of course, the gnomes needed a couple of toadstools in their yard. Lori of RunLoriRun! and I have been sharing the same creative wavelength recently. Check out her adorable Christmas houses!

And because the season is so busy, and sometimes we forget to smile and enjoy, here is a cup of cheer. Okay, two cups.

From a nice woman in Texas who really likes to decorate: A Christmas House

And I know many of you love Straight, No Chaser, but in case you don't know them, or if you are feeling just a little blue watch: The Christmas Can Can!

I hope you have a relaxing day with some hot chocolate, or a good latte thrown in (no Splenda - REAL sugar!), because life is all about the details, right?

Ho ho ho!

PS The skellys said I have to include them, even though this isn't their holiday. So here is Isabelle, and two ornies (Lenny and Poppy):

Thursday, December 10, 2009

I have the answer to holiday stress!

As I was frantically running up and down the stairs with packages to ship so that members of my family MIGHT get their gifts before 2010, I noticed how the furry members of my family were dealing with the holidays.

They were napping. Blissfully asleep, dreaming their little fur child dreams, snorting and snuffling, all the while my hair was falling out from stress.

Napping.(This might explain the mysterious unplugging of lamps and phones. I was hoping for a ghost. Ah, well.)

More napping.

Here's one where Sophie opened one eye to see what I wanted. Opening two eyes would have required too much energy.

Watching them nap was so relaxing, I decided to share some past napping moments.

Here is the husband napping.

Child napping.

Child napping on a train.

There now, don't you feel more relaxed?

So if you are feeling stressed out from the holidays - just walk away from it. The packages, the paper, the cards, and yes, even the music. Get a blankie, curl up and nap. Here's an added bonus: it's cheaper than shopping. :)

Monday, December 7, 2009

A couple of new pieces, and a collector's tree from STJ!

Let's hear it for hand-made! Huzzah! The artisans at Spooky Time Jingles have created a one-of-a-kind gift for Christmas art collectors. This 6-foot-tall Christmas tree is filled with original handmade Christmas ornaments from the artists at STJ. It's going to be auctioned on Ebay.

Here's the link to the STJ Christmas tree!! It is gorgeous.

I finally finished a few dolls. Here is young Frida. When I made this, I was thinking about Frida when she was a young girl. I wonder what she was like? I wouldn't be surprised to find out was in charge of the classroom. I love this material. I think this fabric is for Valentine's day, but it has a tattoo feel to it that I love.
And this is Claire. I made a sketch of a girl like this, and I wanted to see if I could make a doll that looked like her. Although she looks simple, she was really kind of a pain to sew. But I love her anyway. These two are headed to etsy. I am sewing up some more sugarplum fairies and a skelly. Who says you can't sew skellys at Christmastime? Not me!

A couple of pics of our lovely snow on Saturday! Ho ho ho!!