Thursday, December 20, 2007

Monday, July 09, 2007

Repurposed Art People

Check out this cool article over at Collectors' Quest. There are some amazing artists and crafters featured (including me!?) and some really awesome pieces. Personally, I'm in love with the bowling ball/carafe lady. She may need to come and live at my house.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

summer school, green living and bubbles

It is summer school time and I've spent the last week with a group of 24 thirteen-year-olds. They are the kids who struggle to get with it during the school year and just don't quite make it. They've been working diligently on creating a documentary-style biography of a person of their choice. It has been amazing to see this group of so-called misfits turn out work that is beyond my wildest expectations. Sure, there are kids who still don't care and who simply can't care because of circumstances beyond their control. But there are always those kids who shine and who are like little beacons of light, showing me that the rocky coastline of teaching is worth traveling.

I still have six weeks of summer school left though, so check back in with me at the end of July and see if I've crashed in the rocks or the crew has organized a mutiny.

This week has also been a big week for my husband who launched his new business, live green. He has been working hard, mixing up green cleaning products, researching ways to make people's living spaces cleaner and greener, and getting in gear to save the planet, one home at a time. I'm super proud of him and I highly recommend his services. I can safely say that our bathrooms are cleaner than they've been in years.

A good majority of the last month has been spent blowing bubbles. Oscar is a master bubble blower, be we are struggling with bubble solution. Any good tips or ideas for bubble solution that works but is also non-toxic? We also want to try out new bubble making techniques, but all we've seen are bubble guns which we aren't so excited about. Any suggestions or ideas would be much appreciated!

Friday, June 08, 2007

The Best Kind

So many times in my life, I allow an agenda to focus me. I do this because of this. I complete this because then it will lead to this. I make this so that I can do this with it. I've been realizing more and more that lately, doing something for some predetermined outcome takes a big chunk of the joy out of the actual creating for me.

Today, while Oscar napped, I sat down and made a little stuffed for someone whose birthday it is today. It was such a pleasure to just sit and create and think of her enjoying what I had created just for her. I wasn't thinking about anything but the simplicity of creating and doing beautiful work and knowing it will belong to someone who is special to me. It was just about transferring a little piece of me into someone else's life. To me, that is the best kind of crafting/creating/art.

Monday, June 04, 2007

At least I'm not putting on mascara while I chat on the phone...

My newest and most favorite thing that I've been busily creating is the Beatrice Agenda.

I was always standing in line at the market, sitting waiting for a film to start, driving to and from, and some inspiration, some creative tidbit would pop into my mind. I'd be at the local bookshop and want to scribble down the address of some must-visit website, but alas, all I had with me was gum wrappers and receipts. I was forever scrambling for bits and pieces to jot down ideas, creative concepts and the random thought floating around in my head. I looked around for something that I could easily carry with me that actually had enough room to write, could also hold a pen or pencil or two and would close even after I'd stuffed it full of assorted papers, receipts and other miscellanous objects.

I found nothing. So I started playing around with creating one of my own design. After much tinkering and lots of trial and error, the final product emerged: the Beatrice Agenda. Practical, pretty, and unique. There are several available in the shop.

Perhaps now I won't always be scrambling for a piece of paper, but rather scribbling down some important item while I drive. Makes you feel safe on the road, doesn't it?

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Shop Update

There are a bevy of new items in my shop (see sidebar to link there.) This is what I have been busy, busy, busy doing. I've also been busy ending the school year, planning for summer session and hanging with the coolest guy in town.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Spring is Sprung

Spring is here and we have been enjoying ourselves outside. The zoo, the new tricycle and Oscar's new Vans have been getting a ton of use.

I've also been busy editing my young adult novel, which I hope to send out by the end of the month, and attempting to become a runner. I'm going slowly with the running as I have a previous knee injury thanks to one crazy night at a disco and a history of shin splints, not to mention plantars fascitis and orthotics. It's going well so far and I hope to do a 5k in the near future.

On the making and creating front, I've been playing around with several new ideas. Once my novel is edited and out the door, I plan to share.

As for repurposing, check out this very cool, very green new blog: Sew Green

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Happy Birthday!

We had the biggest, bestest birthday party yesterday. Family gathered, food galore and one happy, happy two-year old. I can scarcely believe he is actually two. I am just so very happy that he is here and he is mine and I get to know him and all of his silly, sweet ways.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Long time, no post

Things have been crazy here. To top of our busy lives, I've been sick twice since the new year. This time I even scored some amoxicillin! Yeah for drugs!

This is what our weekend is going to be like...jammies, reading and eating. Hope your weekend is cozy!

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Busy, sick, busy and not necessarily in that order...

As I poke my head out of the pile of Kleenex and see that the calendar says "February 7" I can hardly believe it. Has this year been flying by or what? I've gotten some things done, like a little ebaying (selling) and a little reading (see recommendation below) and even a weekend away at a fabulous Electric Arc Radio show. If you have the chance, check out one their very funny podcasts or stop by for a show if they are in your city or a city near you.

But there is still much, much more on my to do list.

While I sniffle, I thought I'd share the best book I've read this year with you. Of course, it is really only the second adult novel I've read this year (I think so far I've logged 14 young adult novels, but that is partly research, so it isn't entirely for pleasure.) The book is "Man Walks Into a Room" by Nicole Krauss. It is unnerving, emotionally raw, and eloquently speaks of the solitude that we all live in. Read it. And then read her other book "The History of Love" which was one of my favorite books from last year. I suggest reading both in bed, with a hot cup of tea and a handmade quilt to keep you warm.

And make sure to drink lots of orange juice, wash your hands often and if you must sneeze, please do so into the crook of your arm.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

New Treats Listed on Etsy

Check out my etsy shop (click on the link at right) to see a few of the goodies I have up for Valentine's Day. More to follow...

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Pre-spring cleaning

I am longing for a clean and organized house. I feel like throwing things out. I feel like sweep out the cobwebs, dusting all the corners and sorting through all the piles. I know it isn't spring, but I feel like spring cleaning.

So the last week and probably the next couple of weeks (months?) will be spent sorting, organizing, ebay listing and labeling. I have a big to-do list started and I plan to add more to it today.

I can't seem to tackle certain projects until certain other things are in order. For instance, when I was in grad school, I couldn't do research or write until I'd cleaned our apartment. I suppose it is really just a form of procrastination. But at least I'm using my time-wasting time to actually accomplish something.

I'm not sure what it is I am avoiding right now, but once everything is in its place and dust-free, whatever it is must be something big.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

To Keep You Warm

So, I did accomplish a few things this weekend. The first was a try at homemade macaroni and cheese. It looks great, but was a little lumpy and clumpy. It tasted o.k. but wasn't as creamy and delicious as I hoped. I checked one of my favorite cookbooks, "The Best Recipe" by the editors of Cooks Illustrated, which is where I should have started originally. Turns out condensed milk is the key my friends.

I also made a trip to fabric heaven, aka Mill End Textiles. I had a 1/3 off coupon in my hand and let's just say that I was one of those people that makes other shoppers who are in line behind me groan when they see how many bolts I have in my cart. This collection will make a quilt for Oscar's big boy bed.

Tomorrow is Monday. Already? When is our next vacation day? Even though I love teaching, sometimes I long for a wide open schedule that was just filled with things like time with Oscar and crafting and reading and perhaps even an afternoon matinee or two. I guess that is what summer is for!

Saturday, January 06, 2007


Do you ever feel discombobulated? I do. I feel especially scattered lately. I feel like I am searching for some sort of answer, some sort of focus in my life. Perhaps it is because this is the beginning of a new year. I have millions of ideas floating around in my brain and in my heart, so many things I want to do, see, read, taste, create, enjoy. The new year makes me think of all that I want to become, all the experiences I want to experience.

I feel like I have the energy and the passion to do something amazing with this gift of a new year. And yet, I can't quite wrap myself around what that thing is. So I'm going to just let things keep swirling around inside and hopefully the paths of this year will reveal themselves to me.

In the meantime, check out some of the beautiful people and sites that have added to the creative chaos in my mind:

Shim + sons

Thursday, January 04, 2007

I Keep Meaning to Post, I Really Do!

I mean to post. I really do. But then, I start reading all the other magically delicious blogs out there and I get sidetracked. I find a link in a blog I love to a new blog that I must then read from start to finish. Within that blog, I find a link to their Etsy shop and then, well, I am just a complete loss to civilization at that point.

What did I do over break? I spent it with this guy. Now you might think he is doing a reverse snow angel. But no, he isn't. He is swimming.

More soon about must-read blogs, crafty endeavors and macaroni and cheese recipes.