Day One

renxmas_Frenchnutcracker_seethroughSome of my favorite things to do each year are make ornaments and decorations for our home. I love the hand-me-downs that I’ve gotten from family and friends over the years, but to be able to make something that I can hand down to my own daughter to build her own traditions with is very special to me.

This year, my daughter and I have been doing a lot of knitting so our tree reflects that. Garlands of finger-knitted bulky yarn with a flurry of new snowcapped, hand-made ornaments over white tree lights. I’ve also made it a point to weed out the decorations that no longer suit us and either gift them or recycle them in some creative way, giving them new life.

So are you ready? Check out the Advent page for today’s artsy freebie! And if you would like to share the page with friends, just click on the image at left and save it to your computer. From there you can post it to Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest!

Illustration Friday | Future


Posting from my phone today, so we’ll see how this works. I’ll update the image when I’m home worst case.

Not had much time for art lately, but that is being remedied this weekend; I’ll share more about that later.

A lot going on this end. I’ll be updating this post later today so keep your eyes open!

IF Ocean

Getting back in the habit of following Illustration Friday again. I always seemed to carried away by the day-to-day, I don’t do near enough drawing anymore. I’ve been using the 52 folders system (post coming) for the past couple of weeks in order to get back on track and it is helping. I have been more productive than I have in a while, but it is a constant battle.

Sharing an old drawing that I pulled out of the archives, so-to-speak. This is Water, from an older elemental series that I am rereleasing. as cards and prints via Etsy. Enjoy!


Moments of sanity

I do believe that things happen for a reason though so, when my daughter wanted to paint something for her father yesterday, there was no surprise when I accidentally pulled out two small canvases instead of one. That was all the incentive I needed.

I have not had time for much more than doodling lately and my sanity from day-to-day is, typically, directly related to whether or not I get moments of creativity. I have been wanting to sit down and make something for weeks now and doodling wasn’t cutting it. I needed to dig into something, get paint on my fingers, a brush and pen in my hand, make a mess.

This year, I have had to do a big push for freelance work. Aside from college, homeschooling, household obligations (that tend to get put on the “do later” list), making food and…what am I forgetting, oh yea…sleeping, I haven’t had time to delve into anything. I have stolen moments here and there to write, much easier than dragging out all my paints, but it isn’t the same.

I was sent several small, 5×7 inch canvases in a thank you package from a friend recently. The package itself has taken up semi-permanent residence on the edge of my desk as I’ve yet to sort through it and put everything away. This week, in between work, school, and everything else, I will be completely reorganizing the largest room of our house; three computers and desks on one end, kitchen on the other, art studio/catchall in the middle. It is my hope to move our writer’s meetings here again as it is much more conducive to conversation, we can do and say what we want, and the kitchen is right there.

For now, I steal snippets of sometimes life-saving time to make memories with my daughter.

We laid newspaper out on the dining room table (the dining “room” being part of the aforementioned space) and pulled a few paints, a couple of brushes and palettes. Half an hour later I was refreshed and feeling human again…at least for another week.

Donations for Noah

I was sent an update earlier today for Noah’s CareBridge page; you might remember Noah from my earlier post asking for Christmas cards. As soon as I saw there was an update I just knew…

Our Angel
Posted 2 hours ago

After a long battle with Stage IV Neuroblastoma cancer, Monday morning at 8:02 AM, Noah Biorkman passed away at his home in South Lyon, Michigan.

Scott and I, along with our families, would like to thank everyone for the continued support over the past few years during Noah’s illness. As most of you know, Noah has received more than one million Christmas cards over the past few weeks. The outpouring of love and compassion has been remarkable and we are extremely grateful. We are now asking for everyone please respect our privacy during this very difficult time. The funeral services will be for family only. We are asking that instead of sending cards and flowers to Scott and me; please make a donation in Noah’s name to either of the organizations below. With your donation, Noah’s legacy will live on for many years to come, if not forever.

Thank you so much for your support and love.

The Biorkman Family

Even if it is only a few dollars, please remember this sweet little boy and send a donation to one or both of the following:

Department of Pediatrics and Oncology
University of Michigan
1500 East Medical Center Drive
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-5718
Checks payable to: The University of Michigan – Noah’s Pediatric Oncology Fund


Make-A-Wish Foundation of Michigan
230 Huron View Blvd.
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48103
Checks payable to: Make-A-Wish Foundation of Michigan – Memo: Noah Biorkman

Stop sending cards to Noah!

STOP SENDING CARDS! From what was relayed to me, they received 80,000 pieces of mail on November 11th alone. Wow. They need peace now though so they can focus on their son so thank you if you sent one! It makes my heart happy and gives me hope for humanity to see that kind of an outpouring.

Now, we need that for Sophia!

Wow!! Thanks! Please STOP!!!!
Posted Nov 13, 2009 1:03pm

Wow! The outpouring of love and concern for Noah is just amazing! Scott and I never in a million years thought that so many people would want to send Christmas cards to Noah. However, please note: We did already celebrate Christmas LAST Sunday — November 8th.


Noah is very ill. He is not getting out of bed and it’s time for Scott, our families, and I to concentrate on our son. His time is very short and he needs us.

Scott and I would like to say thank you so much for the support and continued show of love. However, we are asking that everyone please stop sending cards and gifts.

Also, everyone please post the stop order on Facebook and any other websites or organizations that you belong to. We need the peace right now.

Thank you for your understanding in this request.

Also posted to my original post

Giving it over

“Whatever you’re doing inside of me
it feels like chaos, but somehow there’s peace”

I woke up this morning in a lot of pain. I have been dealing with an abscessed tooth for about three weeks now and, though I am on antibiotics and have had a full exam, many grateful thanks to Dr. Cayia at Baylee Dental, one of my clients, I really need to have both offending teeth removed and will not be right till they are. Working freelance has been an amazing experience, one that I continue to enjoy, but the pay is a hazard as it is good but sporadic and with the economy the way it is, there never seems to be enough when I need it.

My best friend Laurel and I are sisters in many ways. We share our loves of art and writing, and she has always been a great help to me on all levels. If I were ever to have been blessed with a sister in my life, a true kindred, it is her. This past week she offered me encouragement and help with some witchy goodness she had found.

I am an eclectic Christian…which basically means that I am “too pagan for the Christians and too Christian for the pagans”. I use cues in my daily life to remind me to be prayerful and, at times when I have one, I have an altar that is my quiet space, reminding me to take a moment to say thank you and keep the people in mind that are on my prayer list. I consider myself a natural witch and I believe that God has given us so many things to be thankful and to use to better our lives.

The lovely Laurel made up a mixture of the ingredients that I needed in order to work the spell, things like cinnamon sticks, cloves, cardamon, nutmeg and ground ginger in measured amounts. The spell that goes with it was simple but it was allowable to write your own so…

Money simmer in the air,
Money shimmer everywhere!


Fire to water, water with earth,
Money simmer, air give birth.
Financial gain bring harm to none,
Solutions and a bit of fun.
This prayer I offer, resolutions asked,
with these words the spell is cast.

Just doing the spell made me feel better, taking action to give it to God and take it off my shoulders. I know that I was heard and my house smells wonderful. LOL I have gone back in over the last hour to stir the air with it and carried the simmering pan throughout my home in order to spread it, saying little prayers along the way as well as repeating the spell. Everything just fell into place. Despite the buys both being home they were sleeping in, despite my daughter being awake she was working on homeschool in the living room which kept her distracted; I had quiet that I normally do not get and it was amazing. I needed a small pan and the kitchen was a wreck. I haven’t been keeping up with the house with the pain I have been in and, miraculously, the one pan I needed to cast was actually clean. Of course, it was the ONLY thing clean but I am dealing with that next.

After I cast the spell, I started noticing things when I went to check my email. Now I realize that

I got a link from inspiration Paulette Insall whose blog I follow and was introduced to Sanctus Real. Funny how things seem to fall into place…

Sanctus Real’s “Whatever You’re Doing”

You can find the lyrics here.

The face of courage.

hero –noun, plural -roes; for 5 also -ros.
1. a woman of distinguished courage or ability, admired for his brave deeds and noble qualities.
2. a person who, in the opinion of others, has heroic qualities or has performed a heroic act and is regarded as a model or ideal.

If you had asked me earlier today who Margaret Moth was, I would have had no idea. I had never heard of her.

If you were to ask me now who Margaret Moth is, I would have to tell you that she is my hero in the most sincere form of the word.

To watch these full screen, go here.

You never know where you will end up

I got a bit of a shock yesterday. I got an email from MTV Playground requesting one of my Moleskine images – “Frida Celebrates”, one of my newest ones – for their global events coming up. There was a link to their site in the email so I went to check it out and found my profile on their front page!!!

081309_FridaCelebrates_blogIt cycles through, but my profile is on their Featured gallery page for the time being and I wanted to share the good news since the set they have chosen is my Moleskine spreads. What is funny is that I did not realize I had a profile on their site.

I found out that they apparently have a relationship with/to Behance; it was my Behance profile up there, which I had just updated with that set. It really goes to show you just how much smaller the world is getting and that you never know where you will end up.

On a side note, Flickr (and apparently now Behance) are turning out to be mainstays for client traffic for me. I have gotten more freelance work and exposure from people looking through my work on Flickr than I think I have on my own site. I have also noticed that there are a lot of people using Flickr as an actual portfolio. I think it is awesome considering Flickr has several “rules” about it being for photographers and not artists.

Regardless, creativity is flowing there.