Saturday, November 29, 2014

holiday where abouts


'Tis the season. 
And if you are looking for a little extra something, possibly hand made, most likely one of a kind for someone special on your list.
(hey, maybe even for yourself!
Just wanted to pop over here and let you know the
whereabouts of my creations.

Swell Gallery in West Dundee ~ fun vintage and handmade finds. 
This is where you can find my mixed media canvases and my limited edition hand-printed/painted cards. Like shown in the image above.

Fine Line Creative Arts Center ~ artist made textiles, jewelry and gifts. 
where I'll be showing my jewelry. Be sure to check out the class schedule, also. 
A Precious Metal Clay Class might be just the right size for your loved one. 

Okay, back to the workshop. Can't expect the elves to take up all the slack. 
Hope you are having a wonderful holiday season.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

art guitar collaboration ~ community and pride

An interesting set of circumstances and a referral from Tricia of Artistocology has brought me to an opportunity to work a few hours a week with the special needs adults at the Douglas Center as part of their Art from the Heart Program. At the Douglas Center the work program clients create art to sell at various venues. Part of the proceeds go back into the program, but the artist also gets a portion, too. There is a great sense of pride to make money from their sold art pieces. Besides the day to day creating of cards, mosaic mirror and planters, candle holders and jewelry, I’m especially proud of their most recent efforts on a collaboration I initiated and helped design along with artist, Chris Zonta.

I haven’t been here very long but this group has melted my heart. At any given moment you’ll hear a serenade from a client, who never fails to call you “beautiful” or “my friend”. Listening to their good news, helping work out frustration or just receiving a hug ~ very fulfilling.

As we work with some very basic tasks, such as placing paper and tile, gluing deliberately, painting ~ I try to convey simply about elements of design. By using a specific color ways, we create unity. Showing how placement and size create balance and focus.
Each person has their own qualities and personality to add. Working with this group has reminded me to enjoy the process, communicate simply and just relish in the little victories.

This guitar has been tenderly attended to.
From sanding and painting the base coats
to placing the mosaic design on the front 
to the painting mandalas and the collaging the back and sides
Pride has patience has been put into every step. 
Some of the participants are extremely talented, others are enthusiastic but struggle to hold even a paint brush. But each has contributed themselves in the best possible way.

As much as the art guitar has help create pride and collaboration among the clients ~ we are reaching out to the community. This beautiful piece of art was just unveiled at the Holiday Show at the Liquid Lounge and this weekend will be visiting Ivy’s at 5419 W. Devon Avenue in Chicago, IL 
{UPDATE:Bidding is over}
Place a bid to owning a heARTful piece and give back to this wonderful group!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

radiant lucky star

Indeed I was Lucky to have traveled to Hunt, TX for my first Art Camp. Waldemar really has a way of making you feel like a kid again, but the food, staff and grounds welcomed you like an honored guest. 
Three lovely meals a day, each out doing the other in ingenuity and deliciousness. Lovely creatures fluttering and scampering. Of course hearts appeared. Plenty of breathtaking views to ignite my creative juices and make me put my traveling watercolor palate to good use ~ what a treat.

Mindy Lacefield’s post last Spring enticed me to sign up for Lucky Star. Learning and practicing her mixed media techniques, walking, enjoying nature and jotting down our “field notes” in our journals. Under the protection of the creeping myrtles, I sketched, wrote in my journal and enjoyed the beautiful quiet. Complete bliss.
Then there was the Moon - a full moon on Thursday barely visible but on Friday the cirrus clouds highlighted something I’ve never seen before, a prism rainbow halo around the moon. Violet, red, pink to orche. I was so moved, I went up to the cabin and painted much to my patient cabin mates amusement.
Cowboy Clutch was such a fun way to start and get my hands dirty. 
Soul searching, meditating and grounding then creative play with the beautiful soul of Elizabeth Quigg.
A reading of my natal astrological chart reaffirming my need for balance and insight of some pivotal areas in my life from the apothecary expert, yogastrology instructor and energetic spirit of Stacy Wooster.
  I do believe I picked the perfect balance of creating, learning, spirituality and reflecting.
But, I must admit a few days before going Lucky Star, I was wondering if I signed up for the wrong classes. Signing up back in Spring, a serious case of MOS (missing out syndrome) came over me,  making me question my schedule. With so many excellent artists to learn from, Juliette Crane’s magical class, Vivienne’s beloved photography, screen printing with the talented Becky Dawson and omg stitch a folk dress with Cal Patch, bright and endearing Katherine Center, among the talents ~ how can one choose!?
Guess, I'll just have to go next year.
Truly an amazing time. 
One of the lasting encounters was at the bright of day... a sun shower falling gently from a seemingly blue sky. Creating beautiful ripples at the river. 
Each drop ~ a person, starting from the center,
radiating, intersecting and converging.
In grateful harmony.
Each drop
a connection ~  a sign ~ a direction ~  a start
Time to radiate, Lucky Stars.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

slow & steady

Remember crossing a stream when you were young? Seeing the rocks just under the surface, not sure of how deep they are, if they are slippery, sharp or a bit deeper than expected. Tentatively you step anyway, knowing that at any moment you might slip, fall and in less than a second soaked, but not caring. I was reminded of this sensation when hiking Little River Canyon in Alabama this Spring and again while rock mining/sluicing in North Carolina this summer. It’s an unsettling feeling, not always know what lies beneath. But the anticipation of finding potential gems in my path far out way the concern I may fall in.
I’ve been taking chances lately ~ gratefully have only stumbled, not fallen.
Just adjusting... slow and steady.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

fake currency... open dreams

In general, I've been sleeping poorly. Quite a bit going on in my life right now. This morning I was awake especially early, but didn't want to get up because my daughter will "sense" my presence missing and wake up startled. Today is a big day for her, she needs her sleep. 
So I'm writing in my journal and reading a bit. She turns over, eyes open but looking through me. I tell her it's too early to be up. She protests, "wait, just one second" ... I'm thinking shoot I should have been quieter, now she's up! She holds out her hand. "Can you give me fake money so I can unlock my favorite dream?" I gently put the imaginary currency in her palm, she takes it, holds it up to her head, turns it slightly, "click" and gracefully puts her hand back against her chest. Closes her eyes. Sleep. 
And tears start streaming down my cheeks. This is us, living heARTfully ever after. Taking in every wonderfully imaginary moment. 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

a new year ~ overwhelmed with gratitude

I’ve always thought of my birthday as a start of the new year, more so than the celebrated New Year. And since there is only so much time in a day, I tend to extend the goodness by doing my favorite things for days.
This year was no different...
but maybe it was...
~ flowers from my garden & fireworks
~ fitness and bike rides
~ birthday bikram : always ending with Namasté
~ countless wishes of happiness
~ friends, family and a bit of silliness
~ music, wonderful company and laughter at Summerfest
~ A bit of culture : Milwaukee Art Museum
~ flights of fancy and favorite foods
~ adventure - Great America... spinning silly with my daughter
~ tiny gifts revealed by the universe
~ undivided time with my daughter : relishing in fleeting childhood
~ teaching : sharing my passion with other creative souls
~ morning message : reminding me that all our talents, gifts and resources are to be cherished... truly pieces of an universal puzzle
~ a good faith gesture : unfinished business might soon be resolved
~ finding frequency and vibration that reaches in and pulls out : my new singing bowl
~ & a fortune that couldn’t be more relevant and feeling it’s truth
Indeed it felt different. When my Mom handed me my sweet birthday card with horoscope inside, I was overwhelmed with gratitude of all kindness I’ve been graced with this week and really all year. More so then ever I feel like things are falling into place. Maybe not totally making sense, but the direction is a bit more clear. A really great start to a new year.
Feeling truly blessed.
Thank you.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Challenging = Changing

I recently did a yoga challenge. 30 practices within 30 days. A challenge I really didn't think was "for me" - I'm not "that" person. But, I have grown more determined each day, I say "why not"

As a precursor, just that day, my knees were reminding me of the awesome 40th birthday party for my cousin Saturday night and a tweak in my back. I was sincerely thinking I should take a week off of yoga. So glad I didn't. Here is what happened...

Day 1 ~ Self talk. Wednesday go in, show up, like I do. See the challenge board, thinking that's not for me. Then I see the 60 day challenge, all through class I'm negotiating, well I could do 30 in 60 days. Thinking that was the challenge.

Then, while in my standing series - I noticed framed by the wrinkles I often wish away, between the determined eyes in the mirror, it was there. A heart. It is known by friends that hearts and feathers have help light my way the last few years, I so appreciate the universe’s encouragement. As I  questioned it’s existence and stretched forward to the mirror in standing boat pose, it grew stronger.  Truly I believe I saw my inner eye, as a physical heart. fleeting… perception beyond ordinary sight. so gratefully moved. It was apparent again at the end of the practice. I listened.

Day 2 ~ Action plan, followed by doubt. I mark on my calendar, the plan. I tell my wonderful employer of my intentions, that I will need to practice at lunch. I'm determined. And then several people mention how far Palatine is. One dismissed, "wow your are traveling more then you are working out." I'll have to admit it's close. Then, I get told by my massage therapist that the pain in my back is most likely ligament, not muscle and could take several weeks to heal.  Kinda thinking I can "fall off" this train and no one will know. True, I guess, except me.

Day 3 ~ Accountability and progress. I hear the words that tell me I can do this. Challenging yourself, changes you.

Day 4 ~ This isn't so hard. The scale is starting to agree.

Day 7 & 8 ~ To stay on target, I need to make up days I miss, when I'm with my daughter.
So yes, a double. "Who is this girl?" First time for everything. It was on the "plan" but I almost didn't do. Almost. I woke up late, with the monthly reminder that I'm all woman. Exhausted, stressed and behind at work. I'm in the room during my first class and decide, why not? I went into the second class with no expectations, except stay in the room. Maybe that's one of the reasons it seemed easier? I was more balanced... maybe not as strong, but out of my head?

Day 9 ~ still at it, feeling strong. balanced.

Day 13 & 14 ~ another double, I barely made it through the second class. The practice is always the same - you are different. 

As fragile as 14 was Day 15 was fierce! - felt so strong. Shake it  up - 60 minute class.

Stay out of your head, in this practice is not mind over matter. Your body (matter) is more capable than the doubt in your mind. I try to use focus to help with determination to stay in a pose, but I notice soon as my mind starts thinking, I lose the focus, my breath changes and the pose suffers or collapses.

22 ~ Unexpected Class - Level One. Led by Doug, an instructor I love/hate. It was a good change of pace. And realized why I might have trouble reaching for my heels in rabbit (and other) poses. I have extremely short arms. hmm.... visions of t-rex doing yoga... yep, that's me.

Day 23 ~ vaguely recall trying to quiet my mind in savasana. While zoning up into the heat baffle, I started to see little gnomes hiking their way in and out of the small vents that release the hot air. Umm... yeah - yoga - better than drugs.

Days 24-27 ~ I must admit, I was feeling exhausted. Felt like my life was out of order, my house a mess and struggling to be "excited" to go to class. It felt like a chore.

But why go this far to just fall short of the goal. I think I sometimes do this in life also.

I banished the negative self talk and sacrificed everything for to make it to thee last few sessions. Even took a half day vacation to finish a double 28 - 29.

DAY 30 ~ Valentine's Day - practicing some SELF Love - the perfect day to complete my 30 in 30 day challenge —with my favorite "girl Friday"- Agata. I couldn't think of a better way to celebrate a day of Love, than loving myself first.

So, it's been almost 3 weeks since I completed the challenge. I haven't felt so dedicated to the practice last week. Also, talked myself out of a few classes. Started looking at my upcoming calendar and thinking maybe I'll cut back. But Challenging means Changing. This practice is the balance I need physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. 

Accountability is the key ~ so I'm saying right now. I'm committing to at least 3 practices a week. Because I have to put myself first in order to be the best person I can be for the wonderful people in my life.

So if you are so inclined to try Bikram Yoga. Let me know, I'll be here New Level Hot Yoga. 

Friday, February 7, 2014

grateful reflection

~ the universe uses circumstances we would not choose ~
~ to take us to places we would not go ~
~ to introduce us to people ~
~ we may have never met ~
It was two years ago today I made a definitive choice based on circumstances out of my control. Making me see myself, others extremely dear to me and even the world in a different light. 
It's been a time of introspective investigation — realizing and changing old patterns.
Forever grateful for my kindred spirits, forever friends and many others I've learned from and connected with along the way.
“‎Close your eyes & imagine the best version of you possible. That’s who you really are, let go of any part of you that doesn’t believe it."
— C. Assaad

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

artist reception

Artist Reception this Friday, Jan. 17
at the Addison Center for the Arts
213 N. Lombard Road, Addison
Entrance is at the Northwest corner of
Addison Trail High School
Come view some art and nibble a few refreshments
The show will continue throungh February 1, 2014