Project 365: creation journal. Week 4.

Week 4 of my creativity project. The key is to create one thing each day, a project 365 of sorts. The vague criteria keeps my imagination open and my motivation going.

Day 1: carved a few pumpkins. The better one is the one I used a stencil for.

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I also baked cookies with the kids to get in the spirit of Halloween. Recipe for sugar cookies by Wilton.

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Day 2: another rendition of a painting I found on Pinterest. I love re-creating art that inspires me 🙂

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Day 3: ninja turtle pumpkin. Full blog post on how I did it here.

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Day 4: made a card. Only had a couple minutes.

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Also made rock candy so me and a coworker can be Walt and Jesse for Halloween.

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Day 6:
Took photos at my son’s school for Halloween.

Day 7:
Started designing labels for a Christmas craft I’ll be making with a friend.

Week 3 of right-brain project

Week 3 of my creation journal.
Keeping things versatile is keeping me strong. I like having such a broad range of creative activities I can count towards this project.

Day 1:
Spent the morning taking photos. Spent the afternoon editing them and a backlog of several more photo shoots as well that I was able to finish up.

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Day 2: I admit, I missed a day. I’ll make it up before the week is up though 🙂

Day 3: drew something. It sucked. Guess I wasn’t feeling it.

Day 4: mini photo session

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Day 5: fun with facepaint. Practicing a sugar skull for my friend who wants to dress up on Halloween. We did a run through just for kicks.

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Day 6: editing photos

Day 7: saw an image on a YouTube video (proof: the photographers on photography) and decided to paint it.

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Creation journal week 2

I’ve unofficially challenged myself to do one creative thing each day. The criteria is quite vague allowing the project to be versatile and encourage all forms of creativity. Last week was inundated with editing photos from a photography session last week. I did manage to sneak in a batch of cookies, paint a rock, draw and paint a card for my aunt, and take a few more photos for a friend of mine.

So here goes week 2!

Day 1:

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Day 2:

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Days 3 & 4: shared my joy of painting rocks with the kids:

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Day 5:
Finally painted one myself:

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Day 6: back to cards. For one of my favourite little girls!

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Day 7: more editing:

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Creation journal

Week one of my right-brain project. I’m trying to create at least one thing per day. The criteria is vague which helps me keep my motivation. All I must do is create something new. A photo, a sketch, a letter… Doesn’t matter what.

Day 1:
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Day 2:

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Days 3, 4 & 5:
Edit edit edit. Been spending my time in Lightroom. Craving that pen and ink, but it’s going to have to wait. I’ve got 900 photos to sort through, and probably about 60 to edit.

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Day 6:

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Day 7:

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Daily dose of right-brain

I have to admit I get a fair amount of inspiration from Pinterest. I follow Amanda from Wit & Whistle for her sketches and typography. I recently stumbled upon the following quote:
Draw something every day, even if it sucks.

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I find myself curled up on the couch at the end of each crazy day, and these words repeat in my head. I can no longer idly watch a show without a pen and sketchbook in hand.

Or perhaps a rock and a sharpie marker.

Or maybe I won’t even let myself sit down until I’ve set the lights up in my makeshift studio (aka the living room) and taken a few photos.

I’m craving it like mad lately! I don’t know if I’m trying to balance the left brain or if I’m just scratching an itch, but I feel like there’s so much creativity in there that is wanting to pour out. I feel like I haven’t had a complete day if I haven’t created something.

So I’ve challenged myself to exactly that. Create something every day. Even if it sucks.

Thanks Amanda for the inspiration. http://witandwhistle.com/

If these walls could talk: moving on

It’s a really odd feeling spending our last night “home” before it’s “our old home.” These walls, that have been the backdrop of our lives for the past ten years, will no longer be ours. We will no longer climb 37 stairs to get from our kitchen to our bedroom. This quirky but awesome house will not be the place that welcomes us home each day. I know we’re off to somewhere new that we will consider home eventually. But right now we’re caught in “house-purgatory;” not quite here, not quite there.

With mixed emotions we move on to a new beginning. We are so thankful that we’ll be near enough all our people that they will remain a huge part of our lives.

I will post again in the future about all the wonderful things about the new house, but today I mourn the separation from our past. With a bittersweet heart, I reminisce about all the milestones and memories we’ve had in the last decade. Marriages, births and deaths. School, jobs and daycares. This is the house where the limo picked me up to bring me to where I married the most unbelievably fantastic man in the world. These were the steps I carried my newborn babies up when I brought them home from the hospital. These walls watched me transform from a young woman into a wife and a mother. They’ve radiated with the love of our friends and families. They’ve seen so much laughter and so many tears. We’ve had so many great times that I will treasure fondly until the end of my days. We love this home. It will always be a part of us.

So as we pass on the proverbial torch, I wish for the new owner that his life will unfold as incredibly as ours has while living here. I hope he has the same good fortune we had while living in an awesome area with really fricken cool neighbours.

Goodbye house. You will be missed.

Lucky Boots?

About a month ago, we brought the kids to the store to pick out their costumes for Halloween. My son wanted to be a Pilot, and my daughter chose a Cowgirl outfit. She was very excited about her costume, and has danced around saying “yeehaw” and “giddy up” all month long.

Something very strange happened the weekend before Halloween. During our renovations (which you can read about here, if you’re interested) we knocked down a few walls. Literally 5 days before Halloween, we stumbled across this inside a wall:

At first, it was just plain old funny. Boots inside the wall, what an odd thing to find. But then we realized, hmmm, that’s strange, our girl is going to be a cowgirl this week, that’s awfully coincidental. But it really blew our minds when we realized that these boots were EXACTLY the RIGHT SIZE! Seriously, what are the odds?!?

A few people mentioned that perhaps they were haunted. I’ve chosen to believe that they will be her lucky boots.

Renovations

We’re halfway through a renovation in our laundry room. It’s a fucking nightmare of a mess. My husband is doing an incredibly great job and I am being very patient.

I want my house back! It’ll be done before we know it. I’ve been tremendously helpful. I’ve done a few random renovation-related errands, but mostly my husband and our awesome friend B have done most of the work.

Okay, really, I haven’t been overly helpful, it’s not my area of expertise. I’ve done my best to stay out of the way, and keep the kids entertained. I am ever thankful to my husband and B for putting in hours of labour and for having the skills to pull off this project. 

In the end, it’ll be worth the wait. After 9 years of tripping over our shoes by the front door, we’ll have a hall closet at our entryway. We’ll have a stand up freezer, so I won’t have to go outside to the shed and duck under the bicycles hanging from the ceiling and dig around in the dark looking for something to eat for dinner. We’ll have cabinets. With doors. To hide all our junk. Not the shelves that were spilling with random laundry room/dumping ground objects. It will be beautiful.

In the meantime, the random junk from the shelves seems to be scattered all over the house. And construction materials. And drywall dust. But soon, oh, so soon, it will all have a nice new home. Except the drywall dust. It must go.

Read my next quick post about the random treasure we found in the wall we knocked down…

Haunted House

When we moved in 9 years ago, we were excited that it would be our first Halloween with our very own front door. As the night unfolded, we learned quickly that our neighbours were big into Halloween too. Their daughter’s birthday fell on that day, so it was a great excuse to make a big thing out of it. R would get the biggest pumpkin he could find, and hook up a microphone and amp. The tradition was “the talking pumpkin.” It always got all the kids in the neighbourhood excited!

My husband and R got into reminiscing about past Halloweens. When my husband was a kid, his dad used to make this big, long tunnel through the front yard to the front door. Little did I know, this conversation was going to map out the Halloween tradition that we’ve held ever since.

For the last 8 years, there has in fact been a haunted tunnel at our house. Some years it’s been really long, and snaked around corners. Other years, a little more modest. But nevertheless, it has happened every year. I have to say, it really makes for a fun night!

This year, amidst a huge downpour, and despite the renovations we’ve been working through all week, we kept the tradition alive.

I’m really proud of my husband, and his ability to map the whole thing out. He put a lot of work into this one-day-set-up-and-take-down haunted house. He puts the walls up, and anyone else who has time to spare jumps in and decorates it. (On which note I send out a huge thank you to my awesome neighbours!)

The tunnel is filled with smoke and black lights, and random halloween props. I have to say, the biggest disappointment of the whole thing is the fact that you can’t really get a good picture of the thing. The whole scary factor of it relies on the fact that it’s dark in there.

On the outside, we’ve got a graveyard, and a crypt and our pumpkins and such.

And of course, Halloween sound effects loud enough for the whole neighbourhood to hear. Whether your celebrate Halloween or not, you just can’t ignore it around here!

In the past, we’ve had some scary-costumed grown-ups “haunting” the tunnel. I dressed up scary this year, but after seeing the absolutely horrified reaction of my own young children, I opted out of the make-up… we kept it pretty PG this year. I can’t wait for the kids to be teenagers, so we can scare the heck out of them on purpose!

Oh yeah, and it wouldn’t be Halloween without a few carved pumpkins! Here’s a couple of them close-up…

Happy Halloween everyone!

 

Missing the point

I was reading to my son at bedtime tonight. The story was filled with jokes. The last joke in the book said “what kind of ship never sinks?” “Friendship.”
My son pondered this for a moment than decided that he could make up his own joke. He said “what kind of…” And looked around the room for inspiration. Settling on my face, he continued “eyes…” Uh oh, I think I know where this one is headed, (although he doesn’t yet…)
“What kind of eyes never open?” He thinks for a moment, then chuckles “DEAD EYES!”
Great job buddy. You nailed it.
The riddle part of it anyway.
The part about jokes having to be funny? Overrated.
I had to hide my face in a hug while I quietly burst into laughter, so maybe it was pretty funny after all.
For the right audience.
I apologize in advance to all my parent friends whose children might hear this gem first hand in the coming week.

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