Monday, January 30, 2012

if only the whole day was 'morning'

Why do I seem to have all my drive and energy first thing in the morning?  I get all these great ideas either driving to work at 4 a.m. or while I'm at work, or now, just 30-40 minutes before work.  Then, I get home and have had all day to forget them!
Everyone is talking about Pinterest.  I have been avoiding it, because I feel as if my head will explode if I have to add one more thing to follow online!  Getting my shop back open was going to be my segway into more research of other shops, people, trends, etc...but I have yet do really get into it!
Oh...but back to Pinterest...I was overwhelmed at the home page!!  I scrolled down a bit and thought 'what the...!?'  I know a lot of you are into it, and I'm just wondering if it's worth trying to find time for?  I mean, is it simply another place to share photos?  What was that other site???  OH, shoot, I had an account through them....right! Flickr...oh, or Tumblr...are they all the same idea?  Which one's better?  Do you have an account for each one??  Now I'm just stressing myself out about it.

Let's move on...

I'm a bit scattered this morning.  Hubby got home last night, well, in truth he got home this morning around 12:30.  I have been getting up leisurely on my days off.  Making as much noise as I like.  Even yesterday morning, at 3:30, I turned lights on, talked to myself and Moxie out loud, while getting ready for work.  This morning...sshhhh.  And with all the quiet, I somehow almost left for work an hour early! 
Moxie had, of course, gotten me up to go out, just before Hubby got home.  And, of course, was having no problem with her leg anymore.  I know it is because I gave her one of her old pills for the pain, but I really don't want to take her to work this morning.  She hates it in the kennel.  And, with it being Monday, I have no idea what's on the books and I would hate for her to sit there all morning just to not get seen until 4pm.  Oh, jeez!! I just remembered her license expires tomorrow!!  Scattered!

So, what ARE your thoughts on Pinterest and other photo sites?  What do YOU use them for?

Sunday, January 29, 2012

sad day...

My poooooooooooor little dog has a bum leg.  This past summer she had numerous x-rays and tests to find out that she has dysplasia in her right hip.  So far, we have been able to pretend it's not there.  She took some meds for about a week or so, and the we weened her off those and just had her on supplements and such to keep her joints in tip-top shape.  Because I work at an animal hospital, where we have state-of-the-art laser therapy available, we did that for a week.  And, so far, that's been enough to keep her in good working condition.  Unfortunately, I think the 24 hours of crappy rainy weather, coupled with her obvious depression that 'Daddy's' been gone since Thursday morning, has caused a serious set back. 
She isn't putting any weight on it, and has been in bed since last night.
I put a heating pad on her hip, and massaged it a bit.  I gave her some of the meds that were left over from last time, and I've doubled up her supplements. 
I am often frustrated with my hospital job, but things like this constantly remind me that this job is a huge money saver. 
I am CRUSHED that she's in so much pain that she can't move.  I was in tear this morning thinking about the possibility that she may need surgery after all.  But this job allows me to not also add the medical bill stress to the equation.  And I'm thankful for that, at least.

She's the best thing to happen in our lives, in my opinion...there is nothing in this world like the companionship and love of a dog! 

In happier news: don't for get about the giveaway!  Winner gets picked Thursday afternoon.  So far, it looks like David of Clearer Reflections will win, as he's the only one participating so far!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

good news...giveaway update

After thinking about my giveaway a little more, I decided that just one weekend isn't enough time.  In my original plan, the giveaway would've run closer to a week, but then things got away from me...but, I didn't change the end date.

But, now I am changing the end date!

I've decided to run the giveaway through Thursday...and, I'll pick a winner to announce in my post on Friday.  That seems more fair.

So, again, good luck!  And thanks for sharing!!

And, if you missed the original post, or are just tuning in and want to know more, go here for the original post.  There you will find the 'rules' and take a peek at the prize!

Friday, January 27, 2012

It's Friday...time for my first giveaway!

Boy, I'm coming in under the wire for a 'Friday MORNING' post!!  As you may remember, Hubby is in NYC for a conference this weekend.  He left early yesterday morning, and I was out ALL DAY yesterday.  So, since I took the next two days off, that meant no alarm or good reason to get up at 5a.m. as I usually do.  It meant, instead, that I made the dog wait until 6 a.m. for her breakfast.  It meant freshly brewed coffee and homemade pancakes for breakfast, and lingering in my jammies. It also meant catching up on all I missed from being away from my computer for nearly 24 hours!
So, here we are at 11 a.m. and I'm finally to the point where I can post my giveaway post.
I have officially re-opened my etsy shop (MyDearest -yes, I've decided to keep my original name) and added some great new stuff.  I DID leave my old stuff in, too, for now so that my shop isn't nearly empty.
And, now I'd like to invite you all to take a peek.
Here are the giveaway rules, if you'd like to play along!

First, you should check out my Etsy shop, since it is what I’ve been working on getting up and running. Then,

1.  Check out my Facebook Fan Page and ‘Like’ me (if you truly do, of course).
2.  Follow my blog, if you don’t already, and let me know in a comment here.
3.  Do you have a blog of your own, with friends who may be interested in my shop? why not blog about this giveaway, and add a link (and let me know in a comment here)!
4.  Do you tweet? I’m trying to get into it…why not ‘Follow’ me? Tweet me something…it’ll be fun!
Each of these actions will get you an entry into the drawing, so do as many or as few as you like. I’m just trying to find some love for my shop, out there in cyberspace. Anyone who is already doing any of these things will automatically get entered, for your previous kindness! (if you’re not interested, you can just let me know, but who doesn’t love free stuff!?)

The prize?
This hot new bag…

...and this cool quilled snowflake!
The bag is 100% cotton (it’s going to shrink a bit when you wash it) in a ‘natural’ creamy color. It has been awesomely embellished with an iron on transfer. The design is an original, by me. I took a piece of card stock and cut out a flame outline, then put the outer bit over another piece of card stock. Then, of course, there was some scanning and printing, etc, etc.
The snowflake is one of many that I made over this winter. It was my entry into the world of quilling and I just fell in love. Every single snowflake I made, pulled me deeper into love with this art form. I’ve added some jewelry to my shop, using this art of paper twirling.

The winner will be chosen by random at noon this Sunday afternoon. I know it’s not a lot of time, but I’m hoping that this will not be my last giveaway.

Good luck, Everyone!! And thanks for helping me get a little deeper into this social networking thing!

Oh, and Happy Friday!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

I used to be good at photography!

I'm still trying to get my photos just right, but I think I'm getting there.  I used to use a colorful background with fun dots all over, but I think I'll try the all white route this time.  We'll see how it goes.  I'm having fun making jewelry, though!!

This week is proving to be much more hectic than I imagined.  What was going to be a chance to really concentrate on improving my photography skills for etsy, has turned into a 'well, I can maybe carve out some time here or there to do it'.  Hubby is getting set to be away Thursday through Sunday, so I'm trying to spend the little bit of time we are home together when HE'S not working, to relax and hang with him.  That's pretty much only when we're eating dinner.  He's working at the bakery today, though, so I won't see him for lunch...perhaps I'll get some stuff done then.
The real problem is me, of course.  I took pics of all my new journals the other day, and wrote out the descriptions.  I did the same for my jewelry two days ago.  But, I'm just not happy with the shots...and I'm determined to do this right, so I need to take all new photos.  Which means, I have to break down and buy new flood lights (or whatever those are called).  I had one my dad gave me, but have lost it in borrowing it out.  Not that one lamp would do me any good.  I don't even own more than the one table lamp we own, and all of our light bulbs are 'soft white'.  I also have been using a lame photo editing program, b/c I hate waiting for my photoshop to open on my computer.  Yes, I am blaming technology for my short-comings AGAIN!

Anyway, it looks like, as much as I want to hang out with Hubby on his last night in town for awhile, I'll be spending the whole afternoon taking pictures on Wednesday.  (Family matters have taken over Thursday.)  I really wanted to be up and running by Friday morning...perhaps Thursday will just have to be a late night.

Don't forget...there's a giveaway in the works!  You can checkout my Facebook fan page now, if you'll be part of the giveaway entry.  You can go here, or click on the box at the top right corner of this page.  Official rules and such will be in my Friday morning post, though.
(Sorry for all the promoting...that's what this week is about for me.  I promise to be more interesting once my shop  is back up and it's not all-consuming for me.)

Monday, January 23, 2012

well, well, finally snowed!

And I mean SNOW!  Of course, i didn't get any pictures, but imagine the ground being green as you drive to work at 4 one morning.  You go about your business, stocking shelves and such, away from windows.  4 hours later, the store opens and you see that it is starting to snow.  Snow that was scheduled to start at noon.  4 hours after that, it is time for you to go home and it has been snowing the whole time...quickly.  So quickly that there is already a half foot of snow that you must walk through to get to your car...and then brush off your car.  No trucks on the roads...why should there be?  It's Saturday, no body does anything on Saturday! *sarcasm, in case you missed it in my typing*
It didn't stop snowing for about 12 hours.  and we got about 14-16 inches in that time. 
Once it stopped though, that was it.  At 7 pm I went out and shoveled my car out of the little spot I was in.  I managed to get my car up our driveway just enough to keep it from sticking out into the road.  And, we did get the street plowed...of course, that just means it's a giant sheet of ice now.  The nice thing was that I had just had my car (exhaust) fixed AND fresh gas, so I didn't worry about the car.  And, I was smart enough to wait for the snow to stop, but also not wait for the next morning to shovel and brush my car.  The worst part of the morning was prying my frozen doors open.  The roads had been cleared through the night, and it wasn't a big deal.  (I hate driving in the snow) 
As pretty as it is, and as troublesome as it is having snow melt while it's still winter and cold snaps come and go, I am excited that it's actually supposed to be in the high 40's today (near 50), so most of it will melt.  Hopefully, it will dry up before it gets cold again.

So, in the spirit of this crazy snowstorm, I've decided that my giveaway will be one of my quilled snowflakes!
This is like the ones I sold over Christmas and New Year at our friends' bakery.  I think they turned out great, and I would like for one of my readers/fans/followers to have it. 
I am setting the giveaway to coincide with the re-open of my Etsy shop at the end of this week, so stay tuned for the specifics...since I don't expect people to 'like' my shop or facebook fan page without getting to see what I have for the shop! That would be silly!  I'm thinking Friday morning/afternoon...mark your calendars!

Today might be my first day testing my split-shift plan at the vet.  It is my hope that I can sneak in an afternoon workout, now; but, also, I hope it gives me a little extra time during the week to get out into the virtual world and start discovering all the great stuff out there!  I read others' blogs and think 'wow! they find some great stuff!' and so I've come to rely on others for that.  But I want to be able to say 'hey, look what I found!'  You know?  What I really love about online communities is the way they can so easily help out one another.  I mean, for someone in Ohio to expose someone in New England to an art show in California, all with a few typed words and the click of a's just amazing.  (Just as an example)
I am not technologically savvy, which is why it has taken me so long to get to a point where I am ready to go out beyond my little cyber-world, but I can't deny it's power.
So, hopefully, you can look forward to some more interesting posts this year! (hopefully)

Well, if you like my snowflake and want one of your own...get your etsy-loving twitter and facebook selves ready for Friday's post.  

Friday, January 20, 2012


Let's see...what's going on? 
Well, I've been creating new stuff for my re-opening next weekend (yikes!).  I have a nice collection of stuff but I will continue to work as much as possible during my 2 day 'vacation', while Hubby is in NYC at a children's book writers conference thing.  Of course, there is always some sort of family drama these days, but we work through our bumps in the road as best we can, don't we?

I have successfully worked out a split shift during my days at the animal hospital.  It will, of course, go as a day-to-day sort of thing...I will take a noon-3pm lunch, unless something crazy happens and they need me to stay/come back early.  But, all-in-all, it is a victory for me. That gives me a little time during those days to get a little bit of crafting in, so the whole day is not a wash!  And, this will hopefully keep my frustration down so that I am less tempted to just quit.  As much as I would love it, it's just not in the budget.
Oh, which brings me to another bit of good okay news.  I have been dealing with an exhaust issue with me 2000 Chevy Cavalier for...oh, about a year or so.  I knew there was a problem with part of the exhaust rusting, but I was told that the location would mean a total exhaust replacement.  Now, I'm no dummy...I know that's a major repair...major $$!!  So, I let it go for awhile.  I have never had to pay more than a couple hundred dollars for repairs on this car...and that's usually for tires or total brakes.  I really like this car, with it's little faults (such as the uselessness of having a fold-down back seat when the little 'bump outs' restrict you from using the full width of the car, and the dashboard that seems to have a new crack in it every time I look), it has been pretty reliable and inexpensive to keep.  With this new issue, there has been talk of a new car.  Hubby has been trying to get me to get a new car for quite some time.  I don't want to shop for a new car, I don't want the hassle of buying a new car, and I certainly don't want the payments of a new car!  Well, Monday, my car wouldn't start.  It was the coldest day so far, and I just let my gas get too low.  Normally, I'd just try a couple times, pump the gas pedal, and it would start and I could get to the gas station.  But it was just too damn cold. 
After that little annoyance, I decided it was time to get the car fixed (well, checked at least).  The timing was good...I got out of work at 10:30 am yesterday,and we both had today off, so being without a car wouldn't matter.  I didn't go to my usual mechanic, the one who said 'total exhaust replacement'.  I went to Midas.  Where they still had me in the computer from before we bought our house...i think it had been 9 or more years since I'd been there (probably to have my muffler replaced).  ...this story is getting way longer than I expected...let's just cut to the chase...
I asked for an estimate before they did the work.  Hubby and I had decided anything over $800-1000 would not be worth keeping a 2000 Cavalier with 123,000 miles on it (though I'm shooting for 200,000...I kind of have my doubts, but don't tell the car!).  When he started giving me the didn't sound too bad.  They were just gonna weld the pipes, take out the rusty bits and replace the brackets that had 'disintagrated'.  Then he said the bracket holding my engine up was also rusting out...they can replace that.  THEN he tells me (because I also had them do my way overdue oil change) that my engine is leaking oil ...a lot of oil from several places.  Oh, here it comes...this is where I have to give up my car that I have had for 11 years!!  Some how it all came in (including the oil change) just over $460!!!  Now, that's not money I really wanted to spend on car repairs, but boy was I relieved! 
My only issue now is that the cap they replaced will not solve all my engine oil leak issues.  So, that means I'll have to revisit that at some point.  I also found out, b/c they do a courtesy check, that my belts 'need immediate attention' as they are 'cracked'.
Moral of my long-winded story?  I'd say, buy American!  :)

Enough of that...I just had to share because I'm so darn happy that I don't have to give up my 'stagecoach' (I call it that because it's all rickety and an old stagecoach).

Here's a funny little pug that I got to love on Monday/Tuesday.  He was the highlight of my time at the vet this week.
He is 9 years old.  He is the male version of my temperament, attitude, the love of belly rubs and having his butt scratched, even the way he ducks his head when you go to pet him (the professionals call that 'being head shy', I guess?).  This little guy was adopted/rescued from a family who gave him up b/c someone in the family kicked him and broke his jaw!  Can you imagine!!??
Even better...can you imagine him snuggled up with Moxie...
If I had known about this guy when he was being surrendered he would be mine right now!!  But...after picking up more ear cleaner and joint supplements for Moxie this week and spending $50 WITH my 50% discount, I remembered why we still just have the one.  And, why I probably shouldn't leave my vet job after all!!

And today, I am going to attempt to make a Light Box to take photos in.  I want my new stuff to look great!  I mean, that's the whole point of closing and make it better, brighter, prettier.  I'm so excited about the stuff I'm working on, too.  I even decided to make a set: necklace and earrings:
...wait until you see the finished product!

And as far as blogger goes...I'm having trouble with my pages.  Once the page loads, it disappears and I get a blank white screen.  Is it just on my end, or are you guys getting that too? I hope it's not frustrating everyone else like it's frustrating me!!
Happy Friday, anyway...

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

something's up

Blogger is not being nice to me! I am unable to retrieve my comments.  When I click the link to open comments, it just goes blank.  I'm annoyed, especially since I'm just about to do a giveaway to promote this blog, my facebook fan page, and the re-opening of my etsy shop!  Hopefully-fingers crossed-it'll either work itself out by the end of the month, or I just need to update something.  Once again, I'm reduced to scratching my head over this technology stuff!

I had a small victory yesterday...well, I got the ball rolling towards what I think will work out for me.  We had a technicians meeting to discuss the schedule yesterday afternoon.  I wasn't really looking forward to it, because it usually means I have to stay at work for the entire 11 hours I'm time to leave for that hour break I look forward to.  But yesterday was car wouldn't start in the morning.  I put off getting gas to the point I usually takes a couple tries, but she usually gives in.  Not this time.  It's been so unseasonably warm, that I wasn't really paying attention to the fact that the 'cold snap' was going to affect things.  Hubby had to drive me to work...I was stranded!!  BUT, the good thing about the meeting: lunch was provided!!  I didn't have to starve!
OH, my 'victory'...the past few weeks, well since everyone has been back from vacations, it's been too many staff members to keep everyone busy.  Last Monday we were even short one because she had jury duty, and I still had nothing to keep me busy!  So, I had it in my head to offer to do a split shift, where I would basically take a 3 hour lunch break (noon-3pm).  I suggested it to the 'lead tech' yesterday and she's running it past the hospital manager today.  I like getting paid, and need the money, but I HATE standing around all day.  It makes my 11 hour day feel like an eternity...twice!  I hope they go for it, because my frustration with the whole issue has got me to the point where I believe I would rather quit and scramble to find another job, than put myself through that agony! 
I won't lie, my main goal is to get a couple hours of the day to work on my own stuff, too.  All I think about now, while watching the minutes tick by at work, is how I could be working on my own stuff at that moment!  Today, we'll find out if they actually go for it. 
They are actually hiring more people and putting more people on, and say 'the reason will become clear soon' but won't tell anybody anything.  I think that's wrong.  I am increasingly frustrated with the way they are changing/running things lately, but I'm just two days there...I gotta keep things in perspective, I guess.  I think they are getting more techs to take the kennel people out of the hospital picture altogether so they can increase boarding.  In which case, they have some major construction to do, too, though.  I guess we just wait and see.

Unfortunately, all of this, and a little family drama is keeping me from having any time to do much of anything these days. I'm more exhausted than normal (emotionally drained, I think) and time is scarce at the beginning of the week for me.  But my head is full of ideas that just need to be executed (the good kind of execution!).

Sorry about the two consecutive days of picture-less posts...I'll try to be more engaging and less gloom-and-doom next time!

Monday, January 16, 2012

come on, split!

Well, it's Monday again.  yippee!!  Today will test my patience and cool-headedness (though, that's not probably a real word).  Last Monday and Tuesday were excruciatingly boring.  I stood around for a good portion of my days and wanted to quit just so i could go home.  Today, we have a 'scheduling meeting' where I am planning on pleading my case for a split shift.  This will allow me to not just throw up my arms out of frustration and quit a job I can't afford to leave just yet.
I'm hoping I don't chicken out, or get all red-faced if they tell me 'no'. 

On another note, who tweets??  I am having the hardest time getting into it.  I'm doing better this time around, in that I actually remember that I have a twitter account and check in once in awhile.  It helps that my facebook updates post to twitter, so I don't have to try to be witting or funny or ...there all the time.  It seems to me to be a place where people can feel closer to famous people.  I was hoping to use it as a networking sort of find other people with similar interests...but, I am finding it very hard to carve out time to FIND people.  I have the same problem with my Etsy account...I need to make time for research.  (Which I'm hoping I can accomplish with a long lunch break on Mondays and Tuesdays!)
Here's a confession:  I just replied to a Simon Pegg tweet.  I felt silly doing it, and I feel odd that I've done it.  The world has become a strange place. I mean, sure, if I were to follow someone famous, they like something I made...I mean, you can see where this is going...I'm sure we've all thought of that scenario! 
Anyway, lately I have definitely been feeling like I was born too late.  Almost as if I have been struggling for nearly 38 years to fit in and evolve with the times, but instead I'm just grasping at the end of the rope hoping to just not be left behind. 
These are the things that run around in my head when I wake up at 4 a.m.  I need to be more productive, that's what this is telling me!!

But for to work.

Sunday, January 15, 2012


I have been really trying to get new stuff made by the end of the month.  I have some journals ready, and I've shifted my focus to my new jewelry line.  I'm mostly working 'organically' and letting the shapes tell me what to do.  Of course, like with most of my work, it's all pretty much based on nature, anyway, so I can't help but go a little free-style.
I made this adorable pair of grapes (they will be earrings in their future):
It amazes me how quickly time shoots by when there is a deadline in play.  Hubby is headed to NYC at the end of the month and I'm using his energy to try to push myself every day after work.  I'm pretty exhausted, but excited about my new work.  As much as I liked my handmade paper bowls (3-D art, as I like to think of it), it's just not as appealing to others, I guess.  And that's fine, because making paper jewelry is giving me a new opportunity to continue to work with paper (which I love) and make something that other people might truly also enjoy.
We will see.
I'm also hoping to have a give-away to coincide with my shop re-launch...stay tuned for that!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

poker night...and beyond

Tuesday night is poker night for Hubby.  The gang travels so that no one is always having to host.  Most of the couples have kids, and yes, their are a lot of couples playing.  I'd say we're getting to a 60-40 split (male-female).  Some couples alternate weeks, but that's all their business, not business is that we hosted 2 weeks in a row.  They play tournament style Texas Hold 'em.  They play a whole 'season', starting just after new year's and ending just before Christmas.  Last season's big winner: My Hubs!  He won enough money so that he was able to take a leap of faith and head out to NYC at the end of the month to try to find an agent/promote the book he's been working on.  How fortuitous!
But, just as their is one guy who likes to always host the final tournament, Hubby likes to host the first game of the season...that was last week.  I was a good sport, even though that meant going to bed at 6:30 with earplugs and pillows over my head, so I could get up just hours after everyone left.
Then, just the second game one steps up to host this week.  Now, normally...I'd say, 'too bad for you', but I happened to get Wednesday off this week.  So, again, I was a good sport and let everyone come over last night.  I stayed out in the crowd until the games started, then I grabbed my stuff and headed downstairs to my studio.
My plan was to get some work done anyway, but it is infinitely harder when there is a party going on upstairs!!  And it's not the kind of party I can 'hang out' at...I'm not into poker (I have played, I have won a few times, but it's just not enjoyable enough for me to do it a lot).
 But I did get some work done.  I finished another small journal.  I think I'm gonna cool it on those while I figure out what to do with my quilling.  I love the idea of jewelry or wine charms or other such trinket type things.  I think I could make some kick-ass coasters, but they would need to be treated like mad to keep them from being ruined.  I mean, I can only really make paper water-resistant...never truly waterproof.  I think that will be something for later, when I have more time to ponder the process.
In the meantime, I played around.  I love fire-themed things (I am an Aries, after all!) so I came up with this little number:
(forgive my photograph, again...this was taken very late last night...on my work can see the glue...)
 I have changed it around a little, and glued it all together.  I'm thinking pendant or possibly, make a set of earrings.  In length, it is only about the size of a bottle cap.
Then I started playing around with some leftover snowflake bits and came up with this:
A necklace perhaps?  I think it's quite pretty!
And then with some other bits and pieces, I thought I could do bookmarks...but I don't think anyone reads books anymore!! Sad. 
I do like it, but it's back to the drawing board, with this one, I think!
So, overall, I was fairly productive, considering I was only really working for about an hour and a half and there was a lot of other list making going on, too.
I'd love to do a give-away to help promote my etsy re-open, my blog, and my facebook page.  I'm just trying to work out the details.  I feel so like a fish out of water with all of this!  I look around at all the success people are having and all the knowledge they have and ...well, it really makes me want to quit a job!  (I'm working on lessening that frustration, but that's another story entirely!)
I'm hoping for another productive 'day off' today.  Maybe a break this afternoon to go see The Artist at our funky old theater in town.  It's a great little, one screen cinema with actual chairs as seats and a huge ceiling mural done by Rockwell Kent.  It was built in the 1930's and it's just a cool place to go.  They show independent and lesser-known films, but they also did a music series a couple years ago.  We saw Ingrid Michealson there (after a Grey Goose promotion in the neighboring!).  And, that led us to get tickets the next year to see the singer from My Brightest Diamond.  It's a great locally owned antique...part of what I love about our town.
Boy...that was a strange tangent!!
Off to conquer the world...

Monday, January 9, 2012

ugh! Monday...ugh! Tuesday!!

I don't hate Monday because it's 'Monday', the first day of the week.  I mean, in all fairness, Monday falls in the middle of my work week, almost every week. I hate it (and Tuesday) because they are the days where I feel like they don't really...exist.  What I mean is that I get up, go to work, come home for dinner and sleep...both days.  There is not really any time for anything else...I live those days simply to work.  And I can see it starting to become a negative factor in my life.  I don't know how the other girls work 4 of these days (of course, they also have 3 days off a week, so I'm sure that helps)!  I basically get up Monday morning, and wait for Tuesday evening to arrive.  What a waste!
The kicker: in a couple weeks I will be getting another review at my other job (we have them every 6 months).  I have been at this job just a couple months less than the vet job, started at a couple dollars less/hour; yet, in a couple weeks I will be making more at the grocery store than at a job where I kind of put myself in harms way every minute. 
I'm not here to complain about work...really, I'm not.  I just can't help but think of all the stuff I could be doing if I wasn't getting scratched or bitten, or...well, all of the other nasty things animals will do when they're scared...all day.
Unfortunately, we are in a time where I don't dare quit a job just out of frustration.  It just means I have to work harder to focus on other things that DO make me happy and just put Mondays and Tuesdays out of my mind.  Nose to the grindstone, and all that.
I'll work out to release some stress AND get back into shape.
I'll put my frustration to work for me and bang out some journals and other paper crafts (I do get to use a hammer when I'm making my journals, so there is definitely opportunity for stress release there!).

I just had to get that off my chest...come on Wednesday!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

I'd love to be more focused, this year

I could browse on etsy all day!  I tend to get caught up in something and I will click the next page arrow over and over again!
But there is always work to be done, right!?  I finally stopped myself long enough to toss our 'tree' into the compost bin and wrap up the lights.  Of course, getting my handful of decorations back up into their proper place in the attic will probably not happen for another couple of days.  Baby steps, here.  There are some days when I am just chompin' at the bit to get stuff done and I can go from task to task without slowing down.  Then there are days, like today, when I don't want to do it at all, so I have to force myself to start and see how much I can do before I start to wander off onto another path. 
While cleaning today, I remembered the lovely books I got for Christmas.  And by 'got', I mean, I brought them as my swap gift and then stole them away from my sister. 
I want to snuggle up with a hot chocolate and these little beauties right now!

Can you see the date? 1896 and 1902! Can you imagine the people who've held and read these!?  I'm no history buff, but I do often think of all the lives that have been lived before me.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Big Day, Today!

I feel great about today!
I had some minor chores to do this morning, but I had my mind set on major studio time today.  And I didn't let myself down!
Hubby had a little freelance project he was finishing up today.  He was also really in the mood for BBQ, so we decided that we would work really hard this morning, and treat ourselves to lunch out at a restaurant we've been wanting to check out.  It was a place we had been before, but they closed down, and have recently re-opened at a new location.  In the future, they are also hoping to add back their live music...BBQ, blues, and bourbon...all I need for a completely fulfilling life!
Anyway, I had my mail art submission to finish (check).  This is something I would not have even known about or considered if not for my exposure to mail art through Dave at ClearerReflections; and, the information I found through The Pen Thief.  But, I'm really excited about this show.  Partly because my friend in Sacramento (where the Milk Gallery is) is going to try to get over to check out the show!
I also managed to get two more journals in the works, today.  They just need to be bound and I'll be on my way to re-stocking my shop for the re-open I hope I can do at the end of this month.
I updated my blog, as you may have noticed.  Anything dealing with technology always seems to throw me into a tizzy.  I like playing with the blogger templates, though.  I could've sat all morning arranging and re-arranging my stuff!  But, throw in the badges and buttons and codes and I'm startled.  I have, for quite some time, been trying to figure out how to link my facebook page to this blog.  Just moments ago, I did it, in just a couple minutes.  The whole time, I was looking for answers in the wrong place.  Sometimes realizing how silly I've been is almost as frustrating as the journey to get to the answer!
So, now we're winding down for the evening.  Hubby's making buffalo chicken chili, a delicious concoction he dreamt up a while ago.  After tasting it, our bakery friends had him make it to sell at the bakery a few times.  Tomorrow, I'm back to work, but hoping to keep my momentum and get some studio time in the evenings.  We'll see how it works out, since I also want to make time to use my fun new toy (treadmill) more regularly.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Time to light a fire!

I love doing collages.  For this one, I used a sheet of scrapbook paper that was all about camping.  I cut out a bunch of objects to piece together this 'girl'.  I saw that campfire and thought, 'wow! what great hair that would make!' And the rest is history.  I really like this piece...even 4 years after I made it!
I am trying really hard to motivate myself to get back into the studio.  My plan is to make use of whatever free time I can spare to re-new my shop listings.  Hubby got me a super cool journal for Christmas.  It has photos of a quilled bird all through it.  The pages are interesting, in that, some are lined, some not, some half lined...with no particular rhyme or reason.  It really lends itself to whatever I feel like doing: lists, sketches, random notes that I hope I can understand later...
Today, I've been lazy.  I visited my dad in the re-hab facility, after working a full day, without getting much sleep the night before.  It is amazing how draining little things can be when they add up throughout the day.  I have tomorrow off, so I am allowing myself some down time. 
My basement has a bit of a dent in it, as far as my cleaning goes.  After a trip to the recycling station tomorrow, I will be a little closer to clearing out the 'junky' half of our basement.
I have made a studio list for tomorrow, too.  It is pretty helpful to have a day off, same as Hubby, when he has so much of his own work to do.  I am less tempted to just watch trashy TV and eat popcorn all day.  I could imagine a life being an artist couple...I think I could get used to it.  If only the money was more consistent!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Well, Hello 2012

This is a terrible picture, what with my hair showing off how absolutely frizzing it gets as it grows, but it was the last picture taken of me in 2011.
We were off for our last social evening of the season.  Hubby took me out for a lovely dinner.  We sat for 2 hours, drinking wine and cocktails, and having tasty little tapas.  The restaurant was called Trevi, and it's tiny...just 8 or so tables.  They have outdoor seating during the warmer months, however, and we are hoping to go back when the weather warms, for a few drinks as we enjoy the outdoor fountain.
After dinner, we headed out to a small party at a friend's house.  When we arrived, there were just 3 other couples (besides the couple hosting), and only a few more people stopped by as others left.  By midnight, it ended up just being a few of us chatting and sipping champagne as (poor old) Dick Clark counted down our last 10 seconds of 2011.

So, here we are, in another new year.  From the looks of this shot of my grow out so far (6 months? I can't remember) it's gonna be another couple years before another cut! Oh, well...I refuse to give up! :)

So far this year has been absolutely grand!  Last night a friend said she wants more snowflakes for gifts for her sister and mother (by November...I think I can manage!).  Hubby and I got the treadmill into the basement (finally, after having it for 3 weeks or so!); and, we did it without having an argument and with him doing it my way (which, of course, was the more clever of our ideas).  Today was well worth waiting 23 days for, too.  Because we were out so late last night (well, this morning) and I had been up for about 22 hours before getting back to bed, I was out cold!  The drinks helped, as I wasn't tempted to get up early with my head pounding just a bit. At one point I heard hubby get up, for what I thought was a shower, but apparently fell right back to sleep.  I awoke a bit later to the muffled sounds of cupboard doors and clanking dishes in the kitchen.  He was, as I had asked for but did not expect, making me breakfast in bed!  He even made coffee...for the first time ever, at home!  He also, for the first time ever, made my eggs with soft yolks!  Normally he simply scrambles eggs...and these were perfect.  Eggs, bacon, toast, coffee, and o.j.!  It was so nice.
Then, we had a lovely walk to the beach.  The weather today was spring-like and gorgeous. 

I hope all of you are enjoying this new year as much as I am so far.  Tomorrow, I start working on my goals of working out daily, and getting into my studio to work daily.  I'm excited about the new year, as I usually am with every new year.  Sure, it's just the next day, that happens to be a new year, but it really is a great place to start when you don't know where to start, otherwise.

Happy New Year!!