an old friend

I haven't worked with block prints in a long time and I miss them dearly. I can't decided what part of the process I enjoy the most—drawing, carving, printing—they all offer something special.

I carved this last week and today I'm working on the printing. Next will be some embroidery. I'll post photos of the completed project next week.

If you've never tried this type of project I suggest you visit Gennine's blog. She's a genius on all levels of this craft... and much more.

printed linen

Enjoy the weekend everyone!

on paper

your million dollar dream

I am my own worst critic. I always feel like there is so much more I could be doing and ways in which I can improve. The funny thing is that just as I'm beating myself about one thing or another I have outside input that sets me straight. I am reminded of the fact that I am accomplishing a lot and that even though I still have a lot to learn I should feel free to pat myself on the back.

A few days ago I received an email that informed me that my blog was mentioned in a new book by Tamara Monosoff called, Your Million Dollar Dream: Regain Control & Be Your Own Boss, Create a Winning Business Plan, Turn Your Passion into Profit. My blog was on a list of five that she recommends. To say that I was surprised and flattered is a huge understatement. I purchased the book and sure enough there I am on page 163. Thank you so much to Ms. Monosoff for the mention and kind words.

I'm already half-way through the book and I keep wishing that I'd had something like this when I was starting my business years ago. It's a very easy read and although some chapters aren't quite relevant to my situation since I'm already established in those particular areas, I am finding the tips on marketing very helpful. The reminder about focusing on my goals and pressing forward in a determined fashion has also been good. I've enjoyed the stories she shares of other entrepreneurs and their experiences because they're so inspirational. I think this would be a great book for someone that is just starting out, specially since it's written from the perspective of our current global economy.

So... from where I stand today I think a little pat on the back is in order, right?

Give yourself one or several too. We all deserve it!

in progress

As part of a Mother's Day gift for my Mom I'm going to be stepping outside of my comfort zone just a bit. The materials at hand include linen, a carved flower for block printing, embroidery hoop and thread and this lavender. If my entire house could smell like this I'd be in heaven.


Well hello everyone! It's very nice to be back. I've missed sharing and reading what you've all been up to, but I have to say that it was nice to lead a more secluded life for a bit.

I'd be lying if I told you I was completely away from all things internet and TV related. It's hard to do when it isn't something the rest of the family was doing. I think my biggest feat and surprisingly the easiest was staying away from the internet. I had to be on for work related things and a couple of hops and skips here and there but I did stay away from all blogs, twitter and Facebook. I've never warmed up to Facebook so that was very easy (I probably won't be back). I also realized that the blogs I read and Twitter were the two things that I needed to get the most far away from as possible. Don't take me wrong... I love, LOVE the people, ideas and interactions that just these two things alone offer me, but I was simply overwhelmed.

So what happened while I was away...
- I balanced out my responsibilities as a Mom, wife and business owner—priorities got straightened out.
- I read books (in plural and from start to finish) - the kids joined in too. Monkey see, monkey do? I remembered what it was like to read a bit before going to bed vs. simply crashing with exhaustion.
- I drew and sketched a lot. I also worked on some watercolors.
- I actually sewed a tiny bit!
- I made significant progress on my proposal for book #2!
- I lost a few pounds (record breaking since that hasn't been possible in many months) by simply reducing portions a bit and eating more conscientiously vs mindlessly. I thought more about how the simple act of taking better care of myself improves other areas of my life.
- Got a new haircut but still haven't decided what to do with the whole hair coloring thing. The gray hairs are gaining serious ground!
- Set some new goals for my business as a whole and for this blog.
- Designed and started production of a few new products for my long abandoned shop. Stay tuned!
- And as odd as this may sound it was nice to just let my mind wander aimlessly without the mental chatter of everything that I see and read online.
- My life slowed down because I wasn't running around as much. I felt like time was always on my side. This alone helped with all of the above.

Aside from the last two items on the list I am fully aware of the fact that I could accomplish all these things without having to skip town per se, but precisely those two items were the ones that were the driving force behind this whole idea. My mind simply needed a quiet break and I needed time to get my act together again. Part of it was also curiosity. I wanted to see what would happen and what I'd learn.

So how will this little experiment change my routine? Well... I finally came to realize that I spent more time on the internet than I had admitted to myself before. In light of this, I will only be around when I need to do some research and my 'just exploring' minutes will be timed and scheduled (while I get in the habit of this new practice). There are several projects that I want to tackle and the only way I can work on them is by being more proactive in the way I manage my work hours. I don't want to let them tick by with mindless clicking here and there. I will be more deliberate in my approach but I also want to leave room (specific time) for exploring.

So there you have it. I'm very happy to be back and I'm feeling quite refreshed. If any of you have ever considered doing something like this... do it! Trust me, you won't regret it and we'll all still be here when you get back.


I'm just popping my head in here really quickly to let you know about a little something that I'm going to be doing the next few weeks—or rather not doing. I won't be around here for a bit.


I won't be on the internet at all and TV will be used at a bare minimum if at all. I'll definitely be back I just need some time away. My projects are begging for some serious attention and my brain is just needing a drastic detox. I don't know about you but there comes a time when I just wish I lived up in the mountains in a cabin or a hut on the beach, take your pick, where I could get away from all the man-made sensory overload. I've been craving for this for so long and I don't know why I've been putting off. This is it—today is day one and I'll be back on the 26th. What a relief. I almost feel like I'm packing my bags and taking off somewhere but I'll simply be in my comfy home focusing on what I need to. I'm really looking forward to this and to showing you my new found path when I get back.

Be well my friends! - XO.

recycling projects for easter

I worked on two simple Easter projects for Going Green with Yolanda Green, a local TV show, and aired over the weekend. One is an Easter card and the other is a bird's nest (different than the one in my book). The materials are very easy to come by and you'll be done with the projects in no time at all (although the bird's nest does involve some extra drying time).

This card project can be used to create all types different types of looking cards simply by cutting out a different shape. How about a heart, a star or something more contemporary like a circle or square? I also think that a monochromatic version (all white fabric with white paper... ooohh) would look great too.

easter card

One small change to materials - I recommend you use a glue stick vs. craft or Elmer's glue simply because the card stock bends out of shape with the dampness of the glue. I don't know why I didn't think of that before shooting the segment... Hindsight is 20/20, isn't it?

easter card - materials

Check out all the how-to in the video below. (Note - I don't think it's showing up on readers).

Please excuse the bare looking house. This was shot several weeks ago when we still hadn't quite moved everything back in from our whole remodeling ordeal. Come to think of it I'm still not done with all that!

You can download the template for the card here.

Happy Easter!

easter card