Saturday, May 16, 2015

Spring Into Warner Recap

It started off raining and dark, but dried out and brightened up. Lilah and I were really worried we wouldn't get to work on the mural, but as you can see, much painting was done!

Here are some close-ups of the murals. There are two - one is an ocean scene and the other is a forest. This time, we didn't end up with any narwhals in the treetops and tigers in the ocean. I think the colored backgrounds really helped.

 Next chance I get, I'll clean up some of the lines and scribbles and fill in some missing colors, but I was really impressed with all the mermaids who appeared today!

Inside, the book sale went really well. I still have a lot of books and other supplies so maybe I'll do another bigger sale this summer.

The best part was meeting new people who had just moved to Warner and best-est, was getting to see my college friend, Andy, and his family! It's been... a really long time.

When we got tired of selling books and painting, we closed up shop and visited with the other vendors, checked out more of the yarn-bombing - these chicks had appeared on our bench overnight! - and then got some ice cream at the Velvet Moose.

In the same building as the Moose, is a new/old shop. It's old because Country Cobwebs has been around for ages and was pretty much across the street from my house. And new, because it has new owners and a new location. I hadn't had a chance to go in the new shop because I always had the kid with me. I was impressed at how much they fit into the space and how it feels a lot like the original CC. I'm not really into "country" but I have always adored the jams and sauces. 

I was so happy to see some of my friends today - "Hello, Apricot Jam and where have you been Local Honey?!"

And as I was checking out I looked up and saw these adorable kitten earrings! I may have to go back for the red hightop sneaker earrings too. 

If you are in the area, be sure to take a look. The owners are the sweetest people - and did I mention they are right next to the ice cream place? (Try the Sweet and Salty Caramel ice cream!)

Friday, May 15, 2015

May 16 - Book Sale and Mural at Spring Into Warner

There is nothing like a little advance notice, eh?

Tomorrow is Spring Into Warner - a celebration of the Arts in our little town. It is low-key and a lot of fun. And a little bit odd. Everyone is preparing today and the yarn-bombers have been at work...

They decorated the trees in front of my studio too!!

Lilah can tell you which of the trees have the softest yarns...
and, yes, sweaters DO grow on trees!


They're everywhere - bike racks, fence posts... there are even knitted monster feet on the town hall's railings!

There are lots of great events going on, so here are the map and schedule (click to see the details).

From around 10am-2pm...
Inside The BeeHive Studio - we will be having a HUGE BOOK SALE! There are craft books, art-biz books, journaling books, Zentangle books, garden books, cookbooks, even some great novels and art books for kids too.

Every book is 20% off. BUT - if you buy 5 or more books - you get 40% off instead. The discount applies to the NEW books as well as to the already discounted books with the yellow bookmarks in them. I know - that is kind of crazy since many of those books are already marked down to less than $10. (I sound like a used car salesman!?) "CRAZY Prices!! Come on down!" But, seriously, I just got in some new books from Quarry - and they are on sale too.

This is part of my I-need-to-raise-money-for-cartoon-school-so-I'm-selling-off-everything campaign. There are three tables full of great books, and two bookcases, too.

If it doesn't rain (please don't RAIN!) - I'll be outside with Lilah working on the mural. We painted in the backgrounds and tidied up the art, so it's ready to have more characters drawn on. With all the color, it really stands out from down the street. The Velvet Moose is a good viewing spot. Ice cream cone in hand...

If you are brave enough, please join us - we could use the help. I have paint markers so it is easy and fun. If you aren't comfortable drawing, you can always pick a character to color or add some Zentangles.

Besides, how often to do you get the chance to draw on the walls?

Monday, May 11, 2015

May 21 - Creative Business Mastery

I just found out that my interview on the Creative Business Mastery Tele-summit - will be on the third day. That's May 21st. I'll be the first "Master" of the day. I still get such a kick out of it! Me - a Master! I hope we all still feel that way after the event... I'm sure you'll let me know what you thought of the interview. (Please?)

If you missed the first post about the tele-summit, you can read it HERE.
And if you haven't had a chance to sign up yet - it's free - so go ahead - click HERE or on the image above. There are really interesting women speaking on Money, Marketing and Mindset. All good stuff.

And feel free to share it with more of your friends!

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Confessions of a Creative Business Master

(That title was written with a smirk and a wink.)

Confessions... I am absolutely terrified of speaking in front of people. Any number of people. And, I am easily distracted by shiny, new ideas. I love them. I have notebooks full of them. I create logos for businesses I want to create.

And yet - I have piles of unfinished projects that just make me feel guilty when I see them and I usually hide behind the excuse of "If I only had enough time..."

Sometimes, these flaws can be put to good use. The flip side of the idea thing, is that I believe that anything is possible. I used to read magazines like Somerset Studio and Cloth Paper Scissors and notice the same artists' names popping up - and they would do round robins together - and I wanted to be part of a group like that! And I listened to podcasts, and blog interviews and then tele summits where these amazing people would talk about their lives and ideas and problems they had overcome...  I wanted to be one of them too.

Guess what!?!

Turns out all my mistakes and ideas and fears - over time - fermented into something also known as "Experience". And I now qualify as one of those people I always wanted to be.  How cool is that?

Minette Riordan asked me to be one of her experts on her upcoming Creative Business Mastery Telesummit - and despite my number one fear (speaking in front of people) - I said "yes".

I guess my passion to be heard, is greater than my passion to hide!

Click the image or HERE to go to the site and register. This is a FREE Telesummit with some very cool ladies including Minette - (who is also a Certified Zentangle Teacher).

You'll love the info if you have ever felt unfocused, distracted by ideas, panic-ed about income, or overwhelmed by your own passions.  There will be 3 days with 16 speakers, broken into 3 topics: Money, Marketing, and Mindset.

What if you aren't Right-Brained and have no intention of listening to the interviews? That's fine too (although I have trouble believing that since you read my blog...) but be sure to click through anyway and then scroll dooooooowwwwwnnn to see my photo mixed in with all those other amazing women!!

I want to make a really big deal about this because it IS a big deal! I don't want this to be just another one of those cool things that I accomplish but allow to be lost in the sludge of other ongoing yuckiness. You know what I mean? Because THIS is where I want to put my energy and creativity. (I'm sure at least one of the speakers will cover that topic too).

I hope that you will join us online - May 19-21. I can't wait to hear all the wisdom - and great ideas - at the Tele-summit. And be sure to pass this info on to your other Right-Brain friends!

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Back at Ya, Judy

My friend Judith Moffat recently did a great blog post about how much fun she had playing with my new Inspiration Sketchbooks, The Tangles of Kells and The Tangles of Santa Fe.

Click the image to go to Judy's blog.

 But what REALLY got me excited was to see her journal page with her Santa Fe-inspired mandala!

Journal page and mandala by Judith Moffat.
My books are meant as "Inspiration" - something to get your motor revving and Judy took the ideas and went flying! I've posted about her mandala coloring books - HERE - and - HERE. She is a Master and I hope to have her come teach a class at the BeeHive someday. Coloring books are getting a lot of attention lately for their meditative and stress-relieving qualities... plus they are just plain fun! Judy's coloring books do all that and they also teach with interesting facts, AND they have humor and characters.

I keep looking at that journal page and hoping that she'll do another coloring book with that image - and others - I want to color them!

Friday, May 1, 2015


Well - we Unplugged in one sense of the word - or at least, we tried. We came to Ogunquit to relax a little, but we spent a bit too much time online to be truly unplugged.

Just when you think it couldn't possibly get any crazier... all the Crazy Eggs hatch!!

This is Spring Vacation week. AND it's the week to choose which college you want to attend. AND it's the week to cram before the AP Exams next week. AND scholarship applications are due. AND - that's just a few of my son's Crazy Eggs hatching...

This morning, we drove down to the Post Office and handed over Alex's college decision* and a few of the scholarship envelopes and then walked out into the Ogunquit sunshine feeling a little stunned and a bit lighter. Our first day of vacation had been spent making frantic phone calls and having intense conversations on the merits of three, somewhat randomly chosen, colleges... what financial aid really means... what huge amounts of debt can do to one's future.. and the general meaning of Life, The Universe, and Everything. Ironically, the answers to the first few questions were remarkably close the the third answer ("42"). So, after that day of stress, we were a bit at a loss of what to do today!?

Lilah suggested we go to the little toy store and get some more Minecraft figures. OK. Then we went next door to get some fabulous pieces of chocolate. OK. Yum. Then we decided to burn it all off - calories and stress - by walking the entire length of the Marginal Way. (The cliff walkway along the ocean).

The view from our lunch table.
We spent a few hours in Perkin's Cove eating fried calamari and quizzing Alex on his AP Psych notecards. I know it is odd... but I get a huge kick listening to Lilah using words like "genetic" and "parasympathetic nervous system" and "amygdala"... (Lilah is 8, by the way). Even the waitress was smiling. We were all laughing pretty hard. And a few of her pronunciations had me picturing some great comic book scenes... Queen Amygdala and Darth Vader... Genie Tickling Mo Defied Organs.. (genetically modified organisms)...

And then - retracing our steps along the Marginal Way...

In the many past posts that I have written about my escapes to Ogunquit, I have often mentioned a dilapidated, gorgeous house that overlooks the ocean, that I fantasized about owning. And turning into an arts retreat center.

The view from my fantasy house. And the house.

See the pile of rocks and rubble in the photo below? :-(
I guess there will be another McMansion coming soon.

My huge house - gone!
We were also shocked to see a sign forbidding piles of rocks. Seriously. Piles of Rocks. Another one of the five things I loved about the Marginal Way. Two are now gone.
I hope they don't forbid climbing on the rocks too...

Lilah on the rocks.
Gull on a rock.
The garden outside our apartment.
Our tiny neighbor.
The Beachmere Salad - yummmm!
Lobster Roll.   Yum Yum YUMMMMMMM!!
Tomorrow, it's back to NH and we are practicing being stressed again. But we aren't taking it seriously enough. Everything seems so much funnier. Laughing has always been the best recharge for all of us.

*Oh - and if you were curious which school Alex finally chose? He chose Vassar.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Oprah, Lego, and a Smidge of Art

I've been having a lot of roller-coaster weeks. Maybe you know what I mean? Where the very thing you have been dreading, can end up being a relief or a positive step forward. Then, what seems like a simple kindness from an unexpected source, turns into an unexplainable, soul-crushing blow. And then when you feel like you are constantly looking over your shoulder, waiting for the next blow... nothing happens.

I am certainly learning that I am a lot stronger than I have given myself credit for - but I am also re-evaluating my motivations (and those of people I come in contact with).  I get so mad or discouraged and want to yell and stamp my feet!!! But - STOP, girl! That's giving in. That's letting "them" win - whoever (or whatever) they may be. That's not me. That's a distraction.

One of the odd side effects of having trouble sleeping - is that, when I do, I have some very intense, exhausting dreams. In one, I was in a place like the Grand Canyon, walking along the rim. I was in awe at the beauty and unreality of the scene. I was walking towards a very tall, green, majestic mountain covered with trees. I wanted to climb that mountain even though I knew it would be a lot of work. I kept getting distracted by the view of the canyon until I realized there was an uncomfortable pull coming from it. Like a vacuum suction, it started pulling things down and swirling away into a black hole. I was trying to move toward the mountain when I heard yelling and saw that I had one of my kids dangling off each of my arms. They were being pulled toward the edge. I knew that if I let go... I could make it to the mountain and safety...
I was digging my bare feet into the rocks to try and get better control and I felt like all my oxygen was being pulled out of my lungs from the strain...

Yep. That's when I woke up.

I admit it. I am tired. Physically, emotionally and mentally.

Today - I put on exercise clothes - with no intention of exercising - but as an excuse to not leave the house. I felt pulled toward the studio to do more cleaning (a different blog post to come, it's on the To-Do List) and lots of other "Shoulds."  I procrastinated a bit by folding laundry and grabbed my iPhone to listen to a story while I worked. I had recently downloaded Oprah's book, What I Know for Sure, and that is what started playing.

I finished all the laundry and as I walked through the dining room, I saw three partially built Lego sets...

I spent the afternoon building and listening to Oprah's voice.

That woman is amazing. Her own story is inspiring and heartbreaking. We listen to other women talk about their pasts, their mistakes and their dreams - and we can't believe they can be so cruel to themselves. And yet - what do we do to ourselves? We are always "too fat", "not good enough", a "bad mother"... stupid, insecure, scared... mean mean MEAN!

If I can forgive Oprah, why can't I forgive myself?

So I followed her lead and asked myself - what do I know for sure?

A few weeks back, that was the theme for a journal group I am in. It is actually a very hard question - but the one thing I know for sure, is that you get what you expect.

In other words, if you expect unhappiness, you get it. If you expect to suffer through the "terrible twos" with your toddler - you most certainly will. Expect bratty kids? You get them.

But if you expect miracles, kindness, happy children, an adventurous life... you get that too.

A weird example... I'm listening to Oprah and pressing little blocks together. I have no idea what the pieces are creating - I'm just following the steps in the directions. I hit a snag when the pieces are being assembled... sideways...? It makes no sense. It's not fitting easily... ugh... my fingertips are feeling bruised.... but I adore building with Legos. I love the challenge and the puzzles. I trust that this has a purpose and it will be worth it, so I just keep going.

About ten minutes later, I pop the annoying bit into place and put a few pieces over it to hold it together - and OMG! I suddenly understand WHAT I was making!? The Legos spell "1932" (just under the clock tower). That's why the pieces were sideways and wonky!
Well then.
I was expecting something cool to come from the crazy - and sure enough.

I am very proud of my fire station.

(I also built this fairy treehouse!)

What I learned today...
* Listen to Oprah, she knows her stuff.
* Give yourself permission to take a break. Recharge.
* You can't help anyone else if you are sick, tired or sad.
* It's perfectly OK to want what you want.
* Create something. It feels good.


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