Friday, March 30, 2012

To Kick Off the Weekend

My friend Amy is my crazy cohort of whimsical madness. She and her friend made this video a few years ago and it still cracks me up.

Without further ado, "The Holey Blue Jeans" song:

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, March 29, 2012


$540 million dollars.

Like the rest of you, I am daydreaming about what I would do if I won the jackpot:

1. Pay off all of my debt

2. Pay off my mother's debt and provide for her future

3. Buy a modest home  (i'm uncomfortable with big houses but I'd love a nice-sized farmhouse)

4. Buy a new car (my current car is 12 years old but it's still running strong!!! And it's paid off!)

5. Give a nest egg to my closest friends and family.  So many of my loved ones have extreme financial worries.  Have wonderful it would be to take that burden away!!!

6. Take that trip to Disneyland I have been dreaming about.

7.  Pay off any debt my church has and provide nest egg for future projects

8. Quit job and focus on my family

9. Set aside money for Noodlebug's college education

10. Work on losing weight, getting healthy and getting pregnant!

11. Set up philanthropic foundation to fund worthy local projects

12.  Save and invest the rest!!!

#11 is a particular daydream of mine.  As I drive around town, I see so many things that my community needs. I'd love to fully fund the Polly Klaas Theater which has been vacant for years awaiting funds. I'd love to fund the Children's Museum of Sonoma County so that it can open even sooner. I want to give major money to the VOICES center for emancipated youth in Santa Rosa so our foster children don't slip through the cracks.  I want to create new playgrounds and parks in my community. 

How fun would it be to give away money as a job? I would be such a great professional philanthropist. 

It's fun to think about, isn't it?

My needs are pretty modest. I'm not the type of person to need a giant house, flashy car, yacht, expensive clothes, etc.  I would be happy to just let go of financial worry. That would be amazing!

What would YOU do with the jackpot?

Monday, March 26, 2012

Spring Break is Over

(image source)

Had a wonderful Spring Break last week.  I got to pretend to be a stay-at-home mom the whole week and I had a wonderful time.  Wish it could be every day.

I have some creative work to share with you but I'm feeling a bit down in the dumps today.  A little bit family drama. A little bit growing pains with Noodlebug.  A little bit rough return to work.  A little bit rainy weather.

Hopefully, I'll bounce back soon.

Hope you are having a lovely Spring so far...

Monday, March 12, 2012

What I'm Starting Today

Tonight, after Noodlebug goes to bed, I am going to start this ecourse:

This Christy Tomlinson/Junelle Jacobsen course really appealed to me because I want to learn more about art journaling in general and stetching in particular.  I love Junelle's style and her subject matter.  I'm nervous this is too advanced for me and that I won't have the necessary ability but I'm willing to give it a shot! I'll let you know how it goes!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Sign Guy

I'm sure you have seen those sign guys around town. You know the ones. They typically have on a funny costume and they are holding giant arrows trying to get you to visit some business nearby.  Today, my son was fascinated by a sign guy wearing a Viking hat.  He was a good sign guy with lots of cool moves. He was spinning his sign which was a giant arrow and doing some fancy footwork.  It made a big impression on Noodlebug.

When we got home he said, "I wish I had a hat with horns."
Because I am extremely weird, a lightbulb went off for me.  I went into the garage and pulled down my costume trunk.  Sure enough, I had a set of Viking horns. (Who doesn't?) I used to work at a very large Nature and Science museum and we had a Viking exhibit come through years ago. I still had my horns.  I thought that would satisfy Noodlebug. But.....if you give a mouse a cookie...

"Mommy, now I need a sign!"

I couldn't help myself.

He needs a little work on his footwork but I'm pretty sure we'll be able to hire him out soon.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Mail Time!!!!

If you have a kid, you are probably familiar with "Blue's Clues."  My son has just discovered it and I may be developing a crush on Steve.

Anyway, I have to admit that I really enjoy Steve's "Mail Time" song:

That is exactly how I felt when I came home to surprise mail yesterday. I LOVE surprise mail!!!
This special mail came from the incredibly talented Shelly Massey.  I met Shelly last year at ART IS YOU where I took two of her classes.  I recognized her as a kindred spirit right away.

Shelly surprised me with this sweet painting that she did:

I haven't decided yet whether it will go in the kitchen or in my workroom.  But I love it!!!
Thank you, Shelly!!!

Thursday, March 8, 2012


My friend Greg is a cartoonist/painter/writer/library worker.  Hey, in this world, we all have to wear many many hats!

Many years ago, Greg did a series of paintings where he put his friends into famous works of art.  Since I am a huge Frida Kahlo fan, he did this portrait of me.  (and my cat Toulouse)

It is based on this Frida Kahlo painting.

I wish I could show you the others.  They are so great.  Most recently, Greg did this self-portrait called "Narcissus Ascendancy." 

His version of a "sad clown" painting.   I love all the different ways people find to be creative. It can be endlessly amusing.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Action Pack #9: The Mad Scientist Edition!

I am such a fan of WhipUp's Action Pack series.  They are always filled with such wonderful activities to do with your children. This issue looks especially good:

Who doesn't want to be a mad scientist? 

In this issue there are more than 14 fun, curious, tasty and artistic scientific experiments:
  • You will learn about microwave expansion
  • and the science of bubbles and yeast,
  • you’ll experiment with crystals
  • and make some cool potions too.
I can't wait to try the "Fireworks in a Glass" activity!

Although these activities are geared for children ages 7-12, I find that most can be adapted for children of other ages.

Only $5 for 20+ pages of activities to do with your kids. 

Get your digital copy here.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Trash Can à la Melody Ross

Melody Ross's artsy craftsy trash can inspired me to make my own. Here is Melody's tutorial.

Here is Melody's lovely trash can:
(image source)

When I saw her tutorial I was reminded that I too have a big plastic bucket in my garage.

Mine is still a work in progress but I like how it is shaping up:

Not the greatest photos but you get the idea. I painted  on the tree branches and then cut out the images freehand.  My branches are filled with birds and insects and I'll be adding butterflies next. It needs more. Maybe some quotations?

I'm just glad I have a trash can in my workroom now!  Thanks for the inspiration, Melody!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Happy Feet

"Hey, I put some new shoes on,
And suddenly everything is right,
I said, hey, I put some new shoes on and everybody's smiling,
It's so inviting,
I'm short on money,
But I'm long on time,
Slowly strolling in the sweet sunshine,
And I'm running late,
And I don't need an excuse,
'cause I'm wearing my brand new shoes."

-Paolo Nutini

Friday, March 2, 2012

What I'm Listening to Today

I was fortunate to grow up in a place where I graduated from high school with most of the people I started kindergarten with. I think it is a wonderful thing when you can look at someone and see them as they were 10, 20 or even thirty years ago. I met my oldest friend Kelly right before we both turned four and we are still friends today even though we live far away from one another.

I have known my childhood friend Rob Giles since elementary school and he just came out with a new album called WHEN WE WERE HAPPY.  I'll be downloading it this weekend.

Rob is a terrific solo artist and also plays with THE RESCUES.   You may have seen them on "Glee."

Talented, yes.  But also an all-around great guy.  I'm so happy for his success.

If you'd like to hear the new album, go here.

One of my favorite Rob songs.  Live.