Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Real. Real. Real.

If y'all are wondering if I am still alive, I am sorry. I guess I should start by telling what has been keeping me from the blogging world.

Almost two years ago I was diagnosed with depression aggravated by anxiety. Physically this presents with fatigue, hypertension, high blood pressure, irritability, migraines, lack of interest, inability to make decisions, and Vitamin D deficiency. I struggle with a lot of the same issues that most women/mothers do, including self-worth, body image, and feelings of guilt, not to mention stress. All this is overwhelming on its own, but throw in some physical repercussions related to brain chemicals not doing their job, and suddenly it is crippling.

There are good days. Lots of them. Relatively good. I count a day with no migraines a good day, even if I still feel like I should be sleeping most of the time. There are people and things and activities in my life that are such great blessings to me. I try to mentally list the ones that have helped me each day.

Creatively, I have still been working on lots of things, things I enjoy doing. Mostly they are things that can keep my hands busy throughout the day while my kids are schooling, while my husband is working online, while Netflix is playing whatever show I am working through season by season. Mostly with my chihuahua on my lap. Our favorite way to sit together is on the couch criss-cross applesauce, her in my lap nest-style, and a bed pillow or two lying over her to serve as her cozy cave and my flexible "table" as I work.

I try to remember to make myself comfortable as I really do enjoy comfort. I prefer cozy, so I will be wearing yoga pants with a t-shirt, a zippered sweater within reach, fuzzy colorful socks, and perhaps a fleece throw nearby. I prefer to keep my hair short because it is one less thing to hassle with if I just need to brush and put on a headband, and I can't stand to have it down on my neck. Right now it is currently too long, and I can just put it in a pony, but I really just need to get it cut again.

This blog has been on my mind for awhile, and I have been feeling guilty about dropping off of it. I know it isn't a big deal to most people, and it is something I am working on, but it isn't too hard for me to come on here and chat a little. I don't think it will be just about crafting anymore. I need a place to be real.

Are any of my readers still out there? Are any of you familiar with depression? Do y'all think I'm just bonkers by now? I'll blog again soon.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

AEDM, Day 3

Adding Gesso to a few pages at a time.
I think the reasons for my slow progress are:

1) I have only been working on it after the kids are in bed.
2) Drying time. I allow the pages to dry fully, because heat drying tends to leave the gel medium a bit tacky, and then the gesso flakes off later.
3) I want the whole book to be prepped because I wasn't sure until today what I was going to do with it. I decided to go with a theme.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Day 2 - AEDM

More of the same.
Today I just didn't feel colorful. I stressed about budgeting, got the whole family involved in cleaning up the living room, and then just focused on prepping another page in the file folder journal. Still, it's progress.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Art Every Day Month

My blog has been so neglected lately. I decided, since November is a month of adjustments and schedules and budgets for me, to add in some daily fun with Art Every Day Month. Hopefully that will keep me posting through the month as I have a whole new art journal to work in.
It started out as a pack of 10 file folders.
Three stitched signatures through some neon yellow duct tape.
Phone book pages get ripped and gelled on for durability and texture.
First inside spread gets the same treatment.

I made it to the second spread before I had to switch gears.
A quick coat of gesso means I can start the colorful part tomorrow!
Make time for ART today!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

OWHVCMP2013

Hey all! I have moved, and finally got unpacked, and have been working really hard to make some card kits for an OWH Card Making Event in Portland, Oregon on September 14th. While in the midst of making all these card kits, Operation Write Home hosted their annual Labor Day Virtual Card Making Party, complete with 10 challenges:

Challenge #1: Winter theme with a sketch challenge.

Challenge #2: "O"- circle, one. "W"- witch, "wicked". "H"- Halloween theme. OWH Sketch #14.

Challenge #3: Triple Die Cutting Technique.
Challenge #4: OWH Sketch #29, Love theme.

Challenge #5: Masking Tape Block Stamping Technique.

Challenge #6: Regularly scheduled OWH Sunday Sketch, #188.

Challenge #7: This one is based on a tic tac toe board. I chose stamping/coloring, punny sentiment, and things with 4 legs. OWH Sketch #41.

Challenge #8: Leaf motif with fall colors.

Challenge #9: One or more bees with bee sentiment. OWH Sketch #15.

Challenge #10: Negative from a die or punch. See the spiders punched out of the black strip. OWH Sketch #35.
And there you go! Each of these is the prototype for a set of ten cards to be assembled at the card making event next Saturday. All except for #3, which is just 1 card. I will be back to post more of my cards soon, now that I am back into a rhythm.

If you want to see more of the awesome cards from the VCMP, visit operationwritehome.org

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

A Color Challenge Over at SMB!

Hey there! I know my attendance has been pretty sketchy lately, but the upside is that I have been keeping up with my creative time. I am two weeks away from completely finishing a daily journal (this will be my 2nd completed journal ever, 2011 December Daily being the first).

I just wanted to pop in to let concerned readers know that I am still alive, still making art, and that my project is the inspiration piece for the color challenge on the Social [Media] Butterflies blog. Here is a sneak peek:

Until next time!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Social {MEDIA} Butterflies Blog Hop: Halloween Edition

I hope you're all having a wonderful fall, the weather here is gorgeous, and I hope you're all enjoying it as well! This month the girls are going to be bringing you a Carve It Up theme--- using our Silhouettes, Cricuts, fussy-cutting, punching, exact-o knife-- our designs will all have a unique cut up piece to it!





My project for this month's theme is a holiday art journal spread...

I have a few of these Ology books that the kids have destroyed (ripped pockets, missing pull-outs, etc.) and I have them set aside to alter for art journals. I mean, it will be exciting using the formats included on the pages with flaps, fold-outs, and pockets!
The very first spread in the book included one flap, but first I had to gesso everything. The paper is a little slick to begin with, but I love the patterns and pictures and text and designs of the original pages, so I only put down one layer of gesso. I wanted some of that original page to peek through the layers. After the gesso, I put down orange acrylic paint, then dabbed on some watered-down turquoise. I used my finger to apply a bit of black, and then I used a couple background stencils with some copper shimmer spray. I couldn't resist adding a bit of gold paint, too.
I decided to use this month's Studio Calico kit, Roller Rink, as well as the add-on I purchased, Couple's Skate. I recently decided to not save my SC kits exclusively for scrapbooking, even though I still like to keep them intact until they are mostly used up. I added some doodling with a black permanent marker and stenciled some places for journaling.
I free-cut the two jack-o-lanterns, and I pieced together all those little candy corn embellishments. The envelope is reserved for stashing wrappers from favorite and unique candies that we may come across this year.
Inspired by this PIN I used small scraps to make some leaves. Leaves are my favorite part of Autumn, so of course they would receive mention of a journal spread about my favorite things about Halloween.
I used even smaller scraps to make this collage owl.
I love that this month's kit came with vellum die cuts. I used the little puff stickers to represent a street of houses for trick-or-treating. I love that gold washi tape, too.
I used a hand-cut banner to represent the making of Halloween decorations, and the witch hat is hand-cut to represent handmade costumes, which is a tradition in my household. Sorry about the weird color of the photo!
There's the flap I mentioned. I am reserving this space for photos of our costumes this year.

So, the page is really busy and not like any of my other journal pages at all. But I definitely had fun making all the components, and I look forward to making more pages in these books. I am not sure if I want to reserve this book for Halloween pages, or holiday pages, or just leave it open.


Thanks for hopping with us!