Thursday, April 29, 2010

So I'm 40, now what?

I want to thank everyone who stopped by and posted a birthday wish for me today... thank you so much. I am touched to know I have such great friends who truly care about me. I appreciate and care for each and every one of you. I so enjoy reading about everyones lives and ups and downs and thoughts and such. We really are social creatures, aren't we? I get my fix everyday as I peek into your lives through your lovely blogs.

So, today I am 40. Well, technically yesterday since it is 1:23 am as I write this. Nothing really exciting happened to me today. Another decade flew by. I had a fairly normal day, a day in the life... No magical wind blowing in change, no tears of sorrow about turning another year older. It's better than the alternative! But I did feel the many well wishes of my friends. I enjoyed a burnt frozen pizza while Asher had a hotdog. We're a healthy bunch, ya know. Daryl worked as usual. He did buy me some beautiful Wave Petunia's and a sweet card to his credit. I think I'm liking being 40.

I did decide to make some cupcakes for myself and Asher. Actually, it was his idea first... kinda. I told him this morning, since he had forgotten, that today was Mommy's birthday. The first thing he said to me was "but where is your cake?" gotta love him. A boy truly after my own heart. So this evening I looked through the pantry to see what was quick to whip up. Nothing is quick to whip up. I had a box cake... fine. I had fudgey icing that I know for a fact is pre 1995. I opened it thinking... what could go bad? Well it stunk like plastic and rancid oil. It was Pillsbury Lovin' Lites. Who remembers those? So I tossed it and made my own with Hershey cocoa (their recipe) and I don't think I'll ever buy that plastic tub again. I let Asher decorate the finished cupcakes and I'm still stepping on those tiny little balls in the kitchen. Do you know how hard it is to sweep those things up? He loves to bake and help with things in the kitchen except the cleaning up part. So I had to post these cute pictures of him enjoying the process.

Well the hub bub is over and I've decided to update my profile picture to the one I posted as my last day in my 39th year. I didn't do it on purpose, the blurriness, but I love what Rebecca of Knee Deep Studios said about it... "I love how it's blurry... echoes the blur between our 30th and 40th years, how we often see ourselves, the waves of life we encounter, the changes that happen oh so slowly but surely until one day, we look at ourselves in the mirror and hopefully say... "I like who I've become." Well, Rebecca, I think I do like who I've become. I hope we all can say that. Good night friends (or good morning!)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

My last day in my 30's

The end of an era has arrived and now I am looking down the throat of a milestone. 40. The Big Four Oh. Tomorrow at precisely 10:17 am I came into this world 40 years ago. My dad always says well you are actually already in your 40th year... yeah, yeah Dad...

My dear mother always called me at the exact time and would tell me the story all over again, as how it was raining like crazy, thunderstorms and she stepped out of the car into a water puddle. How she was drugged, even though she gave natural child birth, she was in and out of it. I guess that's what they did back then. She had long beautiful hair, down to her waist and the nurses were all fussing about it, "what are we going to do with this hair?" She, in her drugged state, was terrified they would cut it off. They didn't.

I cannot believe I am at this major milestone in my life and she isn't here to share it with me in person. She is in my heart and on the tip of my tongue all the time, but she isn't here to laugh with and hug and tell her thank you. She would always make my most very favorite dessert for my birthday, Boston Creme Pie, and no one can make it like she did. Not even me, not that I won't try. She used an iron skillet to bake the cake in and came up with a magical concoction for the yummy rest. She's done that for as long as I can remember. I miss her terribly.

I have decided that in my 40's and forever more... I am going to do what I want to do to please myself and not care about pleasing everyone else, which I think most of us do. I'm not going to become this uncaring person, but I'm going to try to let myself be free to act the way I feel inside and dress the way I feel inside and not worry about my body not being the ideal size. I want to truly be myself and I think time is the only thing that will allow us to do that. To be true to oneself that is.

This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.
Farewell, my blessing season this in thee!

Shakespeare. He had it going on. Or at least he had a whole lot of meanings floating around and pretty ways to say them. Either way, I like this one for sure.

I'm not nearly as deep as this all sounds. Anyone who knows me, knows that I am a jokester more than a deep thinker. But I do think deep sometimes... more now than ever. I think about life, death and my son and his life for the future. I think about how I wish things to be different but know that in 20 years or even less... things will be different. I think about how my mom lived just a few months longer than her mom and wonder if I too have the same fate and my son who is an only child will bury his mother at too young of an age.

Yes, 40 brings with it a certain freedom. Freedom from trying to be something I'm not and the freedom to re-create myself to what I hopefully will like. I like to think I'll be free with myself to be who I am in my heart... maybe I'll be like one of my most memorable and earliest influential art teachers, Mrs. Schenk, who was such a free spirit and obviously didn't care what anyone thought of her as she wistfully floated around the classroom with her scarves to "A Starry starry night". I hope I feel that sort of freedom.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

working on more

Aren't these pretty flowers? I picked them from the side of the road yesterday not far from my house. They smell divine. I think they are some sort of wild phlox. They sort of smell like honeysuckle... mmmmmm

I am getting things ready for our show this Saturday and managed to list a new Mother's Day card for Single Mom's last night on Etsy. Printing cards and creating new images and will be matting and framing up stuff all week. I really wanted to have time to do a few more painted pots because I really enjoy painting them and think the show arena will be a better venue for the pots as apposed to Etsy because the shipping has to be so high. But I'm not sure I have enough time. I fear we are going to get rain on Saturday and that is a bummer. We've had an extremely dry April and now this weekend of all weekends, it might make up for it. :(

Gale has come up with two more Mother's Day poems, so I'll be making two more designs for sure. They are really sweet writings and I know they will be well received. Our stuff seems to be really liked in person, I guess people just can't understand how it will look in person when they see it on Etsy. We're not doing so well on Etsy.

Here is our Vietnam Soldier montage that I think turned out pretty nice. I am hoping to get it photographed today and possibly listed for Etsy by bedtime tonight. I think it will do well at the show. We are offering 2 versions, one will be like shown here and the other will be offered customized to have a soldier's photo and name and dates on it in the right hand corner. There is also a monument of our version of the "wall" in Evansville on the customized version.

Have a great day everyone!

Monday, April 19, 2010

past midnight posting

Well I've been catching up on my favorite blogs tonight and thought I'd post something just real quick. Nothing really important... just little things from my day.

Pretty day today, but chilly and breezy. So I stayed in a while and worked on a new piece for GeeJayCreations. It's a montage for Vietnam Soldiers. Gale's husband was a Vietnam Vet and she wrote it for him a while back. I'll post it in a day or two. I also finished up a card for Mother's Day. It has Gale's poem about single moms and is real cute.

I can't believe Mother's Day is catching up so quickly! I better be listing it on Etsy asap! While on the subject of Etsy. I actually forgot to pay my Etsy bill this month on both of my shops! Yikes! I'm going to get kicked out or thrown into Etsy jail. Surprisingly, there were no late fees.

Not sure if I mentioned it already, but Asher got his first bicycle for his 4th birthday this March. But today was the big day that we all went riding together on all of our bikes in town (New Harmony, IN). We went to a park that has a playground in the center of what resembles a racetrack with blacktop around so you can walk, ride bikes and believe it or not drive on. The second he saw the playground, all bets (and bikerides) were off. We did talk him in to one lap of biking and of course he was so excited that he fell right away on the blacktop. Splat. That one wasn't too bad, but then he did it again. and again. This time crying and holding on to me, he finally understood that you have to look forward while you ride and not backwards, I hope.

The hubs had to go in tonight around 5pm so Asher and I went to Wallyworld to get groceries and poke around. He managed to shake me down for 2 new construction toys, another backhoe and another dump truck. This kid has more construction equipment than Quakers got oats. It's partly my fault, too. Oh well. But I getting tired of not being able to sit on my own couch because it is his "road". He really needs to lighten up. Only child thing.

Oh! and I saw a shooting star tonight on my way home! They make me so happy!! Of course I made a wish... but I can't tell you what it was or it won't come true. So you'll have to just wonder, sorry! haha

Just so you know, Monday and Tuesday's moon are in the best time to plant, lunar-ly speaking that is. The moon will be in Cancer starting early Monday morning, and Cancer my friend, is the best time to plant. Now go out and plant something!

later, taters

Friday, April 16, 2010

Deadlines VS Sunshine... who will win?? + Giveaway!

The one week count down is on to my next art show... I've got to keep going but the sunshine and abnormal temperatures are whispering my name!! we've had 20 degrees above normal for the last week and it has given me summer -itis. It shriveled my tulips... but man it feels great.

I'm passing on a giveaway of a fellow blogger friend... Lulu Kellogg. She is having a giveaway of a beautiful necklace in honor of her 400th post. Make sure you stop by her blog to enter to win this little cutie shown below. While you're at it follow her, because she's pretty cool and has great wit.

A little news on our homefront... my husband spent the last dime plus some of our tax money 2 weeks ago and this week our transmission went out on our truck. $$$ big bucks. :( Murphy strikes again.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Pictures as promised

I'm writing this as my poor dogs are barkin' and I'm not talking about K-9's. I was in my greenhouse for 6 hours today on the concrete transplanting more than 350 tomato plants. Today we hit a record high of like 86 degrees and my thermostat told me it was 111 degrees in there where I was at. All fans ran non-stop. The number of tomatoes keeps growing because as extra seeds have sprouted, I can't bear to clip off, so I carefully dig it out like a surgeon. But I mainly had to transplant because I am hoping changing the soil will correct this miserable problem I have with them this year. Let me share my tale of woe with you and then I'll get to my goodies I bought this past weekend at the art show.

For those of you who may not know, I have a greenhouse and now for the last 3 years I have sold heirloom tomato plants that I grow from seed. Now I've been growing tomatoes from seed for 20 years so I'm no novice in this department and I usually never deter from the tried and true method of sewing them in cells of seed starter mix under lights. But this year, I thought I'd try to get a leg up and up over myself by avoiding the time consuming process of potting up. If I'm growing just for myself, I don't pot up, just pop 'em in the ground and stand back. But if you're selling these babies for $3 a pop, people expect a little sumtin sumtin if you know what I mean. So I pot them up to hopefully get a larger plant and it's also easier to sell individual plants as opposed to the 6 packs. So my plan was to go to this great gardening web site, gardenweb and see if anyone had re-invented the tomato wheel. I caught up with someone, who will remain nameless, who seemed to know what she was doing and I followed some advice that I shouldn't have. I should've listened to my gut, but that's another story. She plants her seed into decent size cups using not seed starting mix, but potting soil with fertilizer in it. She claimed it was so mild, it wouldn't burn them up. hmmmpf. Well, I'm not sure what kind of soil she was using, but I can tell you that mine did. I even as a safety net, put the soil at the bottom for about 75% of the mixture and used the soilless potting mix as the 25% top part that the seed went in to. So I helplessly watched my little seedlings struggle to start and them some died. The others have literally ceased to do anything. So with 5 and a half week old seedlings looking like they are 1 week old I am sweatin bullets. Why didn't I replant you ask? I did, and did and did. I replanted more seed than I ever have. I even had to order more seed. My problem was, I stupidly used the same soil concoction. I kept hoping that as soon as they developed their true leaves they would benefit from the fertilizer and take off. They didn't. So instead of starting from square one, which would be replanting using the right medium, I decided to try to salvage what I had and transplant into a better mix. I carefully removed each and every seedling from its pot and carefully shook off the offending soil to put it in good tried and true mix called Promix. See the poor little babies here. Only problem is when you transplant it stalls the growing, so now I'm still sweating bullets. I have my largest order this year, so I am praying and hoping and doing what ever else I can think of to get these toms going. Please say a little prayer for my tomatoes, they are due to be ready for pickup May 1st!!

Sorry, I know that was a book and boring for non gardening people. So back to the art show I attended with my dad last Saturday. It was an excellent show and really most every artist was great. It was a juried show, so you expect greatness but every once and a while something gets in that makes you think they must serve on the board or something. I won't mention names... because I hope I'm not thought of in the same respect! haha

So here's what I bought:

Paper art by Betty Shew - she makes a mold out of clay and presses hand made paper pulp (I guess it's pulp) into her molds and voila! I was downright shocked at how low her prices were. I guess because she can make many from one mold. Her work is so dimensional. Some of it was framed in shadow boxes and some was just like pouring out of the paper... so sculptural! Beautiful.

Seiz Pottery Nice guy and great organic looking pieces. I found some inexpensive magnets that I love and only $3 each. Nice work and pretty colors.

Silhouettes Etc. Incredible paper work and all done with scissors. She calls is silhouettes but my dad who is also a paper artist, called it Sneerandschnitty. I know I massacred the name here, but that is how it sounds. She said almost no one recognizes the silhouettes as that and was impressed with Dad. I think his head got a little bigger from that... haha. She had this one piece that was a feather and you would swear it was a real feather. Very talented. Said she uses surgery scissors. I wanted an original piece from her but my wallet had shrank by the time I got to her... but her pieces are worth it. I got a greeting card that was a print. Still very pretty but you lose the sculptural effect.

There were so many pieces that I would have loved to purchase but I just couldn't afford them. I was amazed at how many of the artists there either didn't use Etsy or had never heard of it. One lady was afraid of copyright infringement... which I reminded her can happen on or off the internet.

Some of the biz cards I managed to pick up are:
Garry McMichael mixed media
Luna Silks hand painted fabrics
Randall Spangler - painter, illustrator - super nice guy
Catworks - digital art for cat lovers
Beads of Fire - original glass beads and jewelry

There also were many that I just neglected to pick up a card for :( wish I had now.

Well, if you've made it this far... Wow!! thank you! :)

I had a request to show my dad's work and I love that idea. I'll be doing that soon. He makes paper sculptures, but actually hasn't made any in a while... but plans to start again and with bigger and better ideas. We hope to attend art shows together. How cool would that be?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

long day but inspiring

Today I rode along to St. Louis with my dad. For me that is a 3 hour drive. We went to see the annual Spring Art Fair at Queeny Park. It didn't disappoint. It was chocked full of very talented artists of different walks of life... and medium. My dad used to attend the show as an artist for 10 years to be exact, but as he has gotten older, and works full time... he is too tired to do much creating after working all day. He and I both got fired up though as we walked along the colorful and inspiring show. He has plans after retirement to get back into the scene and I'll bet he will do more of the gallery route as he rediscovers how exhausting it is. Plus, Mom was always there for moral support and his own personal cheerleader and with her gone... well it's just not the same. We both talked about how much we missed her and would point out pieces to one another that we knew she would love.

The crowd was about what you would expect when it is a gorgeous spring Saturday in April. But I did see people walking around with bags of their purchases. I hope they all sold something and at least paid the booth fee. I know first hand how disheartening that can be to not sell at a show. I picked up a few pieces myself and will post a few pictures as soon as I download them from my camera. I just love to have real art in my home and wish I had a billion dollars to help support the incredible talent out there.

We had a great time and I could tell he was glad to do something fun for a change instead of just stay home. We chatted the whole time back and driving home flew by. For those of you near that area, the art fair is going on again on Sunday from 11-4 and you can download a $1 off coupon to enter, which is only $5 anyway. I hope everyone is having a great weekend.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Spring Fever real bad!

I hope everyone had a great Easter. My husband wouldn't go, but I drug my son to church but only after I told him the Easter Bunny doesn't come to your house unless you've gone to church... that changed his tune real quick. They had a wonderful Easter program and it kept him entertained. He did pretty well considering it lasted over 2 hours of sitting in the pew. He was really excited to come home to find the Easter Bunny had visited us (thanks to hubby!). Here are some cute pictures from that day.

I've been outside a lot these last few days or actually more like a couple weeks if it wasn't raining. I've been having a great time moving plants around, getting starts from family members and planning more flower beds! Not to mention tending to my more than 320 tomato plants I'm growing in my greenhouse. In fact yesterday I drove to my aunt's house to shovel horse poop for fertilizer for my garden! I'm fairly sore today but not as bad as I thought I'd be. Needless to say I'm not getting a lot of GeeJayCreations made or even any of my personal painting or drawing. I need to get on it cause my partner Gale has been busy again. She's sold more montages and now she has found a floral shop willing to sell our goodies in her shop! I'm really excited and need to get busy. When it's pretty outside, I have a hard time staying inside and in front of the computer! We have an art show April 24th which is right around the corner which I'm excited about and want to get lots of work done for it. But as you gardeners know, the itch has to be scratched! Plus there is a small window of transplanting time for certain perennials.

What about my evenings you say? Well I'm happy to report that in between playing with my boy, I've completed a course online through and am trying to get as much learning in before my 1 months worth of learning expires.

Have a great rest of the day everybody. I'm off to Walmart... ugh. Enjoy the beautiful bleeding hearts.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

He is Risen!

Matt 28:5-6 And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.

Matt 28:6 He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.

I hope everyone takes a moment to remember the true meaning of Easter today and take the time to be thankful for the sacrifice. God loves each and everyone of us. Have a great day.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Good Friday... why is it good?

Jesus was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane (Mark 14:43-52).
Jesus endured six trials - three by Jewish leaders and three by the Romans (John 18:12-14, Mark 14:53-65, Mark 15:1a, Mark 15: 1b-5, Luke 23:6-12, Mark 15:6-15) Jesus survived painful beating, whipping, and mocking (Mark 15:16-20)
Pilate tried to compromise with the religious leaders by having Jesus beaten, but this act didn't satisfy them. Pilate handed Jesus over to be crucified (Mark 15:6-15)
Jesus was mocked by the soldiers as they dressed Him in a purple robe and a crown of thorns (John 19:1-3)
Jesus was crucified on Golgatha, which means the Place of the Skull (Mark 15:22) The sky turned dark for three hours (Mark 15:33).
Jesus cried, "Father! Into your hands I commit my spirit!" and He died (Luke 23:46).


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