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August 2007 Archives

August 1, 2007

A = 1 Point

The keyring above was made - just for me - by Kritty of Kritty.com. When I made the first set of OAmyOAmy pen pouches available, Kritty suggested a trade... and I so clearly came out way ahead in this deal*. After seeing the keychains she made the blogger at Old School Acres, I was smitten, absolutely smitten, with the keychain idea. Kritty does necklaces - great ones, beautiful ones. But, I have a number of pendants and a few to which I'm very, very attached and which I wear all the time.

So, I really wanted a keychain. And, as I said, I was smitten by the two I saw with the children's names and the small symbols. But... I had no idea what "word" I would suggest she use. I considered a few things. M. suggested their initials - which posed some OBVIOUS problems. (If I write them here, little one's first and then big boy's... I'll end up with a zillion spammers on my site again. So, if you know the names of my kids, you "get" it. Otherwise, just ignore and keep reading.)

Ultimately, I couldn't decide.

So I left it up to Kritty.

My keyring arrived a week or so ago. (I've been slow in getting the photos in place for this post.) And... what a wonderful keyring it is! It's a Scrabble "A" on the one side. The other side says "MIDDLE A." Those of you who have listened to my podcast for a while will recall the show this year on the week of my brother and grandfather's birthdays when I talked about the significance of "the Middle A" for me. So, I was incredibly touched when I turned it over in my hands and saw that.... And then... on the edge... so tiny that I can't fathom how she did it... she's printed: CREATIVE MOM.

It's a work of art. It's a work of meaning. It's smooth and silver and has wonderful weight to it in my hands. It's full of words and symoblism for me both at this point in my life and in the history of my family since I will always be the "Middle A." And I love it.

Do I think you should go and put in an order for a keyring of your own? You bet I do. Do I think you should consider an initial or word keyring or pendant as a holiday gift or a birthday gift or a just because gift for someone else? You bet I do. Do I think you should be buying handmade this year? You bet I do.

Is it too early for such things? Absolutely not. It's August.... and thus begins the fastest few months of the year for many of us. So... start thinking now... what letter or word do YOU need?

[* I didn't mention above that Kritty also sent me a stack of ATC's she'd made with her hand-carved stamps, blank ATCs... in a cute pocket that says "blanks," another pocket of ephemera, and... rulers... since I can never find mine. It was such a great package. If you ever get anything from me in the mail, any of you, you probably won't find all that. I'm usually doing good just to get something in an envelope and to the mailbox. And these days, I have to go to the post office to have things weighed and measured, which only adds to the time it may take for something to actually be mailed. It's true. So, thanks all around, Kritty! Seeing the packets of "makings" Kritty sent, and recalling that Poppins included some makings with a birthday card she sent me makes me think a SMALL ephemera swap would, indeed, be kind of neat sometime. I know many of you have done those.]

August 2, 2007

One Step Forward, Two Steps...


Click through to read the note.

That about sums it up. I owe many of you emails. So sorry. I'm on the run again today. And, when I'm not running, I'm working on putting things online so that I can officially take up residence at Etsy.

PS: Silly putty today is NOT the same as silly putty I remember as a child. If your child smooshes it all down in his/her underwear, you do have a problem on a number of levels. Suggestion: be on your way out of the house with the other child so that you don't have to deal with said problems. Try not to laugh as you go. But, be aware, that even once the underwear and socks are tossed (because it also got smooshed in the carpet and then stepped in), the silly putty may still appear again... in your hair more than a week later... with no reasonable explanation how it got there since 20 minutes later you had not only washed it but taken time to do a pretty thorough blowdry job. Granted, during a week when there are "head checks" going on at school (and if you know what that means, you know what it means), green silly putty isn't the worst conceivable thing that can happen to a mom, especially one or ones that have co-sleeping children.

If you woke up today and didn't find anything out of the ordinary smooshed in your hair, and you have had no melted ribbon in the last 24 hours, ruining a project that had become a favorite, consider yourself off to a good start.

PPS: I can't even write a short PS note, can I!

Whoah! How Did I Miss...

How in the world did I miss the release of Foolsgold: Making Something from Nothing and Freeing Your Creative Process... and what rock must I have been sleeping under to not have heard of Poemcrazy: Freeing Your Life with Words.

I was doing a post on something else, and it was running the risk of being "needy" ... and in the process, I ran into mention of (and high praise for) Foolsgold.... high enough that I immediately headed out to take a look. And then I called up Poemcrazy and saw in the overview reference to both Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird and Goldberg's Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within (an important book way back when for many writers of my age). You may recall how very much I love Goldberg's book on painting, too: Living Color: A Writer Paints Her World. (I talked about that one forever ago on the CMP.)

I'm curious... how many of you have read The Artist's Way or Walking in this World? Just curious.

August 3, 2007


Well... I'm back with an updated version of the post I stopped myself from posting last night. Why am I back to this one... well, I thought I'd take a few minutes to catch up at Bloglines... and I saw this. Wow!

And, so, here's the relevant sections from yesterday... If you find yourself with time on your hands... you could (and should) spend time looking at Teesha Moore's gallery. You could (and should) similarly spend time at Lynne Perella's site.

If those names sound familiar... they should. Perella wrote two of the books I read/scoured/perused/oogled last month. Teesha's work appears in at least one if not two of them as well (I'm pretty sure).

First Wave of Pen Pouches



Well, it's official. More items, particulary pen pouches (but I hope other things this fall) will be coming... but the way I do things, it could be 2010 before I actually post the link to this if I don't just "do it." In other words, OAmyOAmy is at Etsy now.

I know some of you are looking for the "Treasure Bags" (like this one) for kids (or for the kid at heart) (or just because you're a cool artist type). A few are ready to post. If you're interested in a TB, feel free to talk to me about pattern and color. I'd rather make customs on those, if possible.

August 5, 2007

A Skirt

Okay, this photo and short but sweet post from SouleMama even makes me contemplate a skirt... Seriously. Shockingly. And, of course, it makes me wish for one if not two such friends!

(SouleMama's book, The Creative Family, comes out next year.)

August 6, 2007



August 7, 2007

Still Working...


August 27, 2007


Today was "back to school," which meant... yesterday.... I had to "decide" what to do with my hair.

As I dried my hair a week or so ago, I realized that this summer I let myself go grayer/whiter than ever before. I watched it happen... but it was summer, so I didn't have to see the day-to-day elementary school drop-off crowd. I was still at the co-op several times a week, but it's a co-op folks, which tells you something inherent about the community, at its core. So, I let it go... in part, the summer sun (although it has been foggy as soup a lot) strips color from my hair very quickly. So, I haven't rushed to color.

I figured I could wait to do it until right before school started back up... and, ultimately, that's exactly what I did.

I know many of you are of the "stay natural" mindset.

As with most things in life, I've got the each-to-her-own mentality.

So, let me tell you a little story...

My grandfather had beautiful snowy white hair all my life.

My uncle went snow white in his late 20s.

My mom started going white in her 30s. But it wasn't until late 40s that she let it go and stopped "covering."

And she loved it. She had nice gray/white hair. And she loved it very much. We all supported that.

But, after a scary time of medical stuff, we were really pushing for dying the hair just to give her a bit of a new leash on things.

She was resistant.

A year later, we were still pushing.

And she agreed.

Now... we're do-it-at-home type folks... so we all three went, and debated, and picked a nice medium blonde shade, thinking it would take her back to where she wanted to be...

(I tried to stay mostly out of the picking. I didn't want to be responsible. But I was there.)

And... an hour later, she came out with.... PURPLE hair.


You may hear about ladies with blue hair.

This was a class of its own. This was purple. A shade of lavender, in fact.... maybe tinged with some pink... and still some gray.

I almost died. I felt so bad and so responsible.

She handled it very well.

(Amazingly so, in fact.)

And after a long time at a salon the next day, it at least wasn't purple any more.

Now... me... I've had my own hair issues and color stories....

So I debated this summer... halfway I got really used to the sheer quantity of white I have... and yet.... yesterday... I went ahead and "did" it... and... I must say, I feel like a new person!

Hair is a strange thing...

August 10, 2007


I've been feeling a return of "black" coming on for a while now anyway... but after finally seeing Harry Potter 5 today, I'm thinking I have to seriously reconsider all that pink I wear!

August 11, 2007

100 Good Wishes

So... I was cleaning a pile on the bar in the kitchen... it's endless... I was cleaning this time because somehow I've "misplaced" a copy of a Netflix movie that I know we've had out for several months and still haven't watched. It went to OR with us and came back, and now I can't find it. I've been looking, casually, for a few days now, with no luck. So, I was poking around in a few catch-all folders and the little barrel bag I keep there to stash various things, just in case I'd stuck the Netflix sleeve in with other papers and kid drawings and catalogs and magazines. Frustrated with so much "stuff," I was tossing things into the trash, and when a scrap from the Keepsake Quilting catalog fell out, I almost tossed it without even looking. But paused, wondering why I'd torn it out to begin with...

There's a "turtle" quilt shown, which is very sweet, and so I'd torn out the page just for the "visual" of it. (It's not something I'd make.) But, today, I read the blurb to discover it is a "Bai Jia Bei" (100 Good Wishes) quilt. I'd never heard of that before - apparently a tradition in China where newborns are greeted with a quilt sewn from 100 swatches of fabric sent by friends and family. Neat, huh?

OAmyOAmy Update

A few of you have asked me if/when I'd be posting new bags to OAmyOAmy at Etsy. I will be posting a smallish batch tomorrow (Sunday). Several top-zips, a few front-zips, and just a few treasure bags.

(My favorite bag ever (maybe) is in this crop, in fact. I'll show a photo tomorrow/later.)

August 12, 2007

OAmyOAmy Updated


Updates are live at etsy!

August 13, 2007



I've had this photo to post forever... I'll be mentioning the book this is from in EP 60 of the CMP. (Maybe today? My thoughts are a bit scattered, so we'll see. Maybe tomorrow....)

At any rate, this is from volume 1 of Owly, which contains "The Way Home" and "The Bittersweet Summer."

This morning I read Embroideries... usually I don't sit and read anything in the mornings. But I did today. And this is what I grabbed out of the stack, which is still mostly graphic novel format (even though I'm "not"...). I wasn't sure what to expect from this one (given the name) - and the name does NOT mean what you think here. I found it very interesting - the whole book is from the span of time after dinner one night when all the women in this family in Iran sit and talk... fairly explicitly.... okay... very explicitly. Not for the delicate-minded. (I'll update later with a link... am having trouble with Amazon's server...)

August 14, 2007


Giant LEGO Man washes ashore in the Netherlands...

August 16, 2007

Hoooooooops. Sooooo Cool

I don't (at the moment) have a space to do it, but I ran into these swatch portraits via Craftapalooza, and, wow, it is such an awesome look - easy, but such wonderful visual effect. Check it out!

A strange moment for me... I responded to circles! (Just kidding. I love circles.)

Photo prompt...

This prompt at Superhero Designs' blog caught my eye the other day. Very cool. (She makes fabulous jewelry, too, by the way.)

August 19, 2007

Black and White


We read the one these pages are from weeks ago... and I've held onto it because it made such an impression on me. Finally, I'm getting around to posting the image... and it's fitting somehow for me... right now.

August 22, 2007

Shadows. Seeing.


At the park. Struck by shadows. But... as Kritty noted at Flickr... the presence of those shadows does, indeed, mean it was not a "gray" day... at least not outside!

[Remember -- Listen to Episodes 60 and 61 of the Creative Mom Podcast for the full scoop on the CMP's August 25 participation in the 15th worldwide sketch crawl. Hope many of you consider joining us - in spirit!]

August 23, 2007

A Blank Canvas


That's what this was when we bought it... a blank canvas.... a canvas for which I had many plans.

It matches a toybox... another blank canvas... which also remains blank.

We had a crib... which was never used. We bought the bed... which was eventually used.

But the canvas remained blank.

And as I struggled to maneuver it out of the room and down the hall over the weekend, I was saddened not by the exit of the bed... but by the fact that as it left the house... it was still... a blank canvas.

The basement is littered with (functional) blank canvases... chairs... blackboards... tables... some primed already... waiting... some not even primed.


August 24, 2007

A World of Color




Should I muster a show next week, a bit of knitting will crop up (some of you miss it, I know). I thought I'd be saying that I was "considering" working on the Podcast Sweater again... but, alas, in a fit of restless energy last night (I generally only knit at night), I dragged it out... spent time figuring out where I was (that I had written "armhole" instead of "shoulder" in one spot on my series of notes took a while to figure out, for sure...)... and finished up the two fronts. The back is halfway done.... This will happen!

But... overall... such color!

August 28, 2007

Art Expo

If you are planning on being in the Pasadena area in October... check it out.

August 29, 2007

Indoor Color


A bit belated in following an old CMP prompt from this spring... a grid from indoors... This is an assortment... but... I have had to laugh at how many of you have commented on the bit of office space I recently showed at Flickr being "pink." The walls are actually terracotta. The irony is that there isn't anything (well... okay, maybe "something") in our house that is pink. It's funny how "pink" everyone thinks me at this point!


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