Sunday, 29 January 2012

Rocking your world friday

Hello Friday Rockers!
I thought I would really struggle this week to come up with anything that rocked my world as its been a bit of a bad week, but when I sat down to think about it I was amazed at how many things I found, which is the whole point right? Thinking I'd had a bad week when actually there were things that made me smile, made me glad and made my heart a little lighter.
My daughter has been really poorly for nearly two weeks now, it started off as a flu bug thing, high temperature, headache and has progressed this week to a chronic ear infection and now to a chest infection with a cough that absolutely racks her little body. I have had a touch of it although nowhere near as bad as her and now hubby has gone down with it too. But onto the rocking stuff.

Good blogs friends.I have found some amazing people since I started my blog, people that inspire me daily, make me laugh and a couple of really special people who I email regualary now. I had a very generous offer from one of them this week and it really touched me that they would think of me! These wonderful people inspire me to stay motivated and without their wonderful comments on my artwork I know I would have given up the idea of trying to be an artist a long time ago. So thankyou wonderful bloggers!
I attended The Lotus Tree launch party last Saturday night and what a wonderful evening that was. (I designed the logo for these lovely ladies new buisness, a yoga and healing studio). They had a guy called Mike Eastwood open the studio for them , he is a crystal therapist and author of lots of crystal books and crystal cards. He led the whole room in a blessing for the new studio which was lovely, even though Lady P and me were stood right in front of a radiator and thought we might pass out from the heat! There was free champagne and wonderful food and I must admit to leaving there a little tipsy (I don't normally drink so a couple of glasses of fizz and I was well away!). The ladies loved the gift I gave them and I was even mentioned in their thankyou speech, which was so sweet of them.
The car had to go in for its MOT on tuesday. This always cause me a lot of worry as the car is old and always needs something doing to it. I asked the Goddess to please keep it in our price range as we don't have much money, being right after xmas and its my sons birthday next weekend! We waited all day for them to phone with the list of whats wrong and how much, my worrying getting worse as the day went on and my IBS kicking in as well. But when they rang, there were just a few things needing doing and although it was still money we couldn't afford it didn't break the bank this time!
Laying on the sofa with Shelby and watching Disney movies! I always moan about the Disney channel being on but as Bea was so poorly this week I let her watch what she wanted! She asked me to sit with her as she wanted a cuddle so I finished up my work and snuggled up with her under her duvet.We watched geek charming which I actually really enjoyed! American teenage school angst in all its glory!!
My little bags for my affirmation cards finally arrived which has meant I can start packaging them up. I have made little clay charms to hang from the bags and they just need painting and attaching and then I can take them to the Lotus Tree and hopefully people will buy them!

Good friends who will rush over and help me with an excel spreadsheet for my work! I still cant use excel no matter how many times I have been shown!
Seeing all the birds in my garden and hearing their birdsong has really cheered me up this week. Although it has got colder the sun has been shining and the birds are going crazy singing in the hedges of my garden. The daffodill bulbs are pushing their way up and I have seen the first crocus' this week. Imbolc is next week which means the promise of spring is on its way when the fertile Goddess returns to the land. I always feel that there is such promise at this time of year, everything is new and fresh and the cycle is begining again.
So thats my list for this week. I had to think hard but reading it through now, there were so many things that rocked but could have got easily lost this week if I had not had to think about them and make a list. So thank you Virginia, there is always something in your week to brighten it up!
Head over to Virginias blog to join up with other friday rockers.
I hope you all have a good week!
Sami x

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Rocking your world friday

Hi Friday rockers! I am late posting as I have been soooo busy this week.
So, what has rocked my world this week?

First off, my wonderful sister who made me a pair of fingerless gloves and a matching hairband with her fab crochet skills.
Going to see Damh the Bard live in Southsea with a wonderful bunch of friends. We have had the tickets booked for ages and were so excited and he didn't let us down!

 Damh the Bard is a pagan folk singer and his music just inspires me so much, it's what I always listen to when I am creating my paintings. You can just get lost in the magic of his words.
It was a wonderful evening and Paige even got him to sign our tickets so we could scrapbook/journal them.

Finding an hour in a very busy week to do a bit of art journalling. Lately I am finding that I spend too much time on pinterest looking at other peoples creativity rather than creating myself!!!
And the reason for my busy week and the most rocking thing of the week, The Equals News Years Party!
The friendship group organised a huge party to celebrate the New Year so its been hectic this week with all the last minute details.
Over 100 people attended last night, from all backgrounds, nationalities and faiths. The members of the group prepared all the food (and there was enough to feed double the guests!), ethnic dishes galore-Indian, Thai, Indonesian, name it we had it! They also put on several cultural dances, making the costumes themselves as well. We even had a guy come last minute with a full on disco for us at no charge...this is the sense of community that this group inspires in people.
There were traditional Indonesian games played and a huge raffle.
Everyone who attended said what a great time they had and we had trouble getting people to leave at the end!
So my huge thanks and appreciation go to this wonderful group of women for all their hard work and commitment.
Its just a pity that I had to spend most of the evening talking to all our VIP guests and promoting the group, instead of letting loose and enjoying the wonderful atmosphere! Oh well, thats my job and its so important to get across to people what we do so we can access future funding.

And lastly, my wonderful children. They were such a big help to me last night with the setting up and tidying up. My son was dragging tables and chairs about, setting everything up and selling raffle tickets and my daughter helped sell tickets on the door and helped some of the younger kids make decorations to take home. I was so proud of them last night ansd loads of people commented on what a credit they are to me, which made me beam with pride. They are such good kids and I thank my lucky stars everyday for them.

I am going to try and link this up at Virgina's blog, but I am still having problems with blogger, some people's blogs I can comment on, others I still can't. Does anyone have a fix for this...let me know!
So thank you to all the people who commented on last weeks post, I managed to read everyones posts but some I could not leave a comment on. Some that I could comment on last week, I can't comment on this week so If You think I havn't been by, I have I just can't tell you how wonderful your posts were!
Sami x

Friday, 13 January 2012

Rocking your world friday!

Hello Friday rockers!

 I have had a great week, loads of things rocking my world at the moment!
  • My homemade meal plan is working very well. I have done weekly menus for the next month, one to save us money on shopping and two, because my daughter and husband are such fussy eaters and I am fed up with cooking 3/4 different meals a night. On the 1st Jan I told my daughter that these were the meals I was cooking, if she didn't eat them she would go hungry and also that there would be no sweets or crisps during the week. There was moaning and much huffing and sighing but She has eaten every meal I have cooked even things such as cottage pie and spag bol. We have always had problems with her eating (learnt behaviour from her Dad and his fussy ways I think!) and it got to the point where all she would eat is frozen proccessed c**p like sausages, burgers or pizza. A couple of months ago I swapped her onto veggie sausages and veggie chicken pieces as I felt that was a healthier option and for the last two weeks she has done amazingly well with her eating, I am so proud of her!
 And here she is in her new Big Bang Theory T-shirt which she bought with her xmas money. She wanted to be like her brother who has several Big Bang t-shirts! (we are huge Big Bang fans!)
  • My Somerset studio art journal magazine finally showing up and the hour or so peace and quiet I had last night to pour over it!
  • My lovely friend Paige who spent all of sunday afternoon and monday evening helping me to design my positive affirmation cards on the computer. I had spent a while trying to do it but couldn't get them quite right so whizz that she is on the technical side of things, she sorted them out in no time! They looked great but printing them at home wasn't giving me the results I wanted so Paige suggested that I get them printed from so she also uploaded them to there for me. So Big hugs and thanks to Paige this week! They have just arrived today and I am so pleased with them.
 Affirmation cards

  • Seeing the Logo I was commissioned to design in print on my friends buisness cards has really rocked my world! They have had some really positive comments about it as well which is great. They were really specific with what they wanted the design to look like ( a person in the yoga 'tree' pose emerging from a lotus flowers with branches around it!) so I am glad I managed to achieve that for them.
They are having a launch party next week to officially open their buisness. It is called The Lotus Tree and it is a yoga studio and healing room where you can have all sorts of holistic treatments. They have also agreed to sell my affirmation cards and have enquired about some of my art for their treatment room!
As a gift for them I kept the original drawing I did of the logo and I have mounted and framed it for them, I really hope they like it!
  • My Son Caleb who is 14, getting an A* in his GCSE chemistry exam! He came home with the result yesterday so then I spent an hour phoning all my family and close friends to brag about it!!!! I am so proud of him, he is an absolute star at school and works so hard to get good grades.
  • Just being thankful for what I have. Joining rocking your world has really encouraged me to be more positive and to remember the little things that have made my week great. I do thank my deities daily for the blessings I have been given but its so nice to write them down somewhere as well in a list so I can look back and say' my Goddess, I have had a good week havn't I?'
If you want to join up with other rockers head over to Virginias blog.
I hope you all have had a good week too!
Sami x

*Edited to say...Blogger won't let me comment on some blogs :(
Is it blogger or is it me again? My blog has finally been sorted out and working properly for the last couple of weeks and now there are blogs that I can't comment on.
Virginia, it wont let me comment on yours to say great rocking post, crafty womble I cant even access your blog and bad penny I can read your blog but again it wont let me comment the page just goes blank when I click the comment box. I did manage to comment on Joannas blog this morning though so I don't know whats going on???!!! I will keep trying but wanted to just say I am not being rude by not leaving comments for the other rockers.When blogger lets me I will be back to comment!!

Friday, 6 January 2012

Rocking your world friday!

Hello! I thought I would join up with Rocking your world friday this year. This is hosted by Virginia over on her Celtic House blog.
It's all about listing the things you are grateful for or the things that rocked your week-pop over to her blog, she explains it all much more eloquently!
I always read Carmens rocking posts and it often makes me think what good stuff has happened in my week, so I thought I would give it a go, I can't promise I will post every week but I will try!

 Sooooooo, whats been good this week?
  • Spending New Year with my Sister, her partner and my nephew. We played dance central, watched Sarah milligans new DVD-so funny, ate lots of nibbles and generally had a fab evening.
  • Playing on the Wii with my hubby and kids, I know this sounds pretty basic but we havn't all played together in so long and the kids can be so funny, making comments about losing and dancing around being really silly. When I stood back and watched them for a minute it really did make me smile. They are such great kids and I am so proud of them!
  • I am grateful for the xmas and birthday money I recieved, it means I can spend it on arty stuff without feeling guilty!
  • Seeing my little robin in the garden. He always appears when I am worrying about something and I like to think he pops up just to let me know everyhting will be ok.
  • And finally, the wonderful ladies of the friendship group, for all the extra work everyone is putting in to organise our new year party and all the enthusiasm they bring to it. Let me explain, I work as a friendship group co-ordinator for an organisation called Equals. I run groups for women from ethnic minority backgrounds (the Isle of Wight has a very small % of ethnic minorities and lots of these women can feel socially isolated).The groups provide a safe place to come and make friends, take part in activities, get some training, get involved with the community and learn new skills.They are the most wonderful bunch of women I have ever met. They are so supportive of each other, always enthusiastic to part in activities and so kind and generous. This week I was working on stuff to update our display board as we have an event coming up. I had seen an idea on Pinterest and thought, perfect, we can all make that together at the group. The ladies had so much fun, choosing their hairstyles and drawing their faces on and we created this for our display board.It also promoted discussion about judging people by their skin colour and other issues, so all in all a great session this week.If you want, you can check out our website.

Well, thats quite a lot of things to be thankful for this week! Its so good to be able to make this list, so often we get bogged down by the moaning and groaning, not having enough, being fed up with our work, our weight etc.that we forget that often its the littlest things in life that make us happy, and they are normally the most important!
Sami x

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Strathmore artist workshops-they are free!

I joined the Strathmore Artists Studio Workshops again this year. I tried to do a couple last year but didn't have enough time what with us having to move out of our house for a few months. The first workshops this month are by Tracy Bautista and are called 'Doodles unleashed'. There are two videos to watch which are about 30mins in total.Once you join you can access the videos until August, I think. It is a ning site so you can join the forum and post your work if you want to, but there is no commitment to do so, you can just dip in and out (Carmen!!).
I copied what Tracy did in the videos and came up with this.

 First layer was spraying through stencils and found objects like rubber bands and feathers. I had no rubber bands or feathers so I made my own feather stencil out of card. I made the circle stencils out of card and used my crop-a-dile to punch some holes in them. I used Dylusions inks as I didn't have any fluid acrylic to make my own sprays.
 The next layer was to add some paint
 Then to outline bits in indian ink (waterproof)
And then to make more marks and doodles with marker pens.

I throughly enjoyed this process! I can still be a bit uptight with my art, worrying I am going to mess it up or that it won't be perfect...I have got a lot better since I started art journalling, but the perfectionist in me still lurks in the background! I found this really liberating, it didn't have to mean anything it was just playing with different mediums and as Tracy says in the videos, just being free to make marks on the paper.
I love how its turned out and think I will use this process again for backgrounds in my journal.
Sami x

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Calendar challenge 2012

Hello 2012!
I hope you all had a wonderful New Years eve and I wish you all health, happiness and creative abundance for 2012!

Here is my January calendar page for the calendar challenge over at Kates blog. This is a year long challenge to create a calendar page for each month and fill it in with your daily activities! I managed to complete last years and thought I would play along again this year.

For this page I used Dylusions paints and sprays, a crafters workshop template, a piece of Lego (guesse who got Kates art journalling DVD for xmas!) and old book paper which I doodled circles and flowers on. I drew the girly myself and her wings are stamps that I made last year.
For last years pages I used the Pagan celebrations and the seasons as inspiration for each month so this year to try and make it a bit different I am going to use positive affirmations each month.
I am looking forward to seeing everyones pages again.The post below this one shows all 12 of my pages from last year and I am so proud that I managed to keep up!
Sami x