Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Photo Friday: Best of 2009 - My Top 3

Monday, December 28, 2009

Cactus Monday: Bonneville or Bust!

So there will be no more frequent vacationing "Down thee Oshin" for us as most Marylanders would say.  I have a feeling that our new vacation spot will be drag racing on the salt flats. Yay adventure!  So it's a further drive than the ocean currently, but there will be lots of sun and ummm, salt!

A silly, totally irrational idea.

Just the other day I had a little bit of a freak out. . . about moving to Arizona and knowing absolutely no one.  When out of nowhere the next day, a relative on the Carlile side of my family just sort of manifested and said hello on Facebook.  And she lives in Scottsdale, just minutes from where we will be moving!  All things related to Arizona have been freaky serendipitous, I tell ya.  Everything in the universe is telling me to go.  Now I have known family there!

So, thinking of my Grandfather James Carlile, sparked an idea.  I don't remember much of him, but one of the most prominent memories is that he used to have a little 4 seater plane and flew it recklessly cross country.  I don't remember him ever being loaded with money, yet he still owned a plane.  So why can't I, right?  See where this is going?  And my Aunt, (his daughter) knows a lady who is a flight instructor who could help me get my pilot's license, ackkkk!  Why I could visit home more often than I thought!  Silly, I know.  It's fun to dream.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Oh Christmas tree, oh Christmas tree. . .

Hey wait, you're not a Christmas tree!  Reality is sinking in, and the adventure in it all is becoming all too real.  My Husband accepted the new job offer in Phoenix and has until January 31st to back out.  I told my best friend yesterday of the news, and I made her cry.  This is so hard!!!

I hope you all find time this Holiday season to savor the moments with your loved ones, and have yourself a Merry little Christmas.  I know I will be doing just that.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Deborah Mori's Holiday village craft party extravaganza!

Deborah Mori over at Life Without Novacaine posted a fun holiday blog challenge that involved transforming a chunk of wood into a cute little house to be part of a Christmas village.  Immediately I salivated at the thought of dusting off my chisels and going to town carving away like a happy little woodchuck.  So, two weeks go by in a flash (cause you know it's the busiest time of the year) and my block o' wood is still sitting on my desk staring at me in it's original state.  Determined to wrap up all impending projects, last night I went to town digging out all possible papers, objects and crafts in my stockpile to decorate it with.  And Ta-DA!  Just like that, it's all finished.  And I forgot to take a before picture.  And it looks like a tornado hit my studio.  But it was so much fun!  Click here to see Deborah's posted originals.
Materials used:  Gesso, pressed papers and decorative papers, rusty metal, synthetic hydrangea petal, buffalo snow, Modge Podge and glitter.  What do you think?
Deborah lives in warm San Diego where I'm sure it never snows so I thought I'd give her some snowy love from Baltimore.  We just got about two feet here over the weekend!  And that's not the only thing we got. . .
We got some news that is going to drastically change our life.  After being all shooken up after the scare of my Husband's job here in Baltimore ending after 12 years, he was presented with a new one in Phoenix AZ just today.  And a much better one.  A promotion and a raise, and a decent relocation package.  All things are looking a-go for a move to Arizona.  We fly out in January to seal the deal and go look at houses.  WOW.  Life can change, just like that.  And I just feel it in my bones that this is going to be a good change, and a much needed change.  But I will miss my friends and family so very much here in Baltimore.
People re-locate all the time, yet it feels so strange to me.  I've lived here all my life.  But I've always, always wanted to move and discover new places.  Have any of you ever had to re-locate far enough where car trips were just too far to go back home and visit?  If so, how did it all work out for you?  Any advice sure would help, and be much appreciated! 

Friday, December 18, 2009

IF: Undone

The first thing that comes to mind when I think of the theme word "undone", is how so many people just spaz out of their gourds around this time of year. This could be due to a number of things. One, the change of season as it gets colder and drearier outside. Two, lack of sunshine. And three, the madness of the holidays and all of their demands. Perhaps they are missing someone with whom they shared special holiday memories with, so that would make four. Five, being affected by job layoffs. And the list goes on. Occasionally, "said" person might come undone and throw a temper tantrum and act like a two year old. Hey, it happens to the best of us! We are only human after all. So here's my remedy for this, if you care to know. . . take a time out.

Our minds can really get out of control, and the best way to handle this is to stop yourself before the problem escalates, take a step back and take a good look at yourself at how ridiculous you are acting. . . go sit in a comfortable chair in the corner and think about what you have done. Then breathe.

This isn't a yoga exercise, so don't get caught up in sitting in the Vajra posture as illustrated above, unless it is comfortable and easy for you to do. And don't get caught up in props such as candles or anything of the like. This is a simple breathing meditation.  Find a quiet space. Sit up straight comfortable in a chair, hands cupped on your lap, right hand overlapping your left and thumbs pressed together. Get comfortable and RELAX head to toe and then forget about if you are doing this right. Focus on your breathing. For about 20 rounds or so, imagine breathing in white purifying light, and exhaling all of your negative thoughts in the form of black smoke. Then just keep your mind still, thinking about nothing for about 15 or 20 minutes.

It's not easy, but the more you subdue your thoughts, particularly delusional thoughts, the more relaxed, recharged and refreshed and clear headed you will feel after.  This practice has certainly gotten me through some tough times.  As the Holiday Season draws near, I hope you all are able to relax and enjoy the festivities and wonderment of it all.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

IMT & Cactus Monday: Handmade Gift

I put googly eyes on my cactus's because. . . I think they are dangerous.  You never know where you stand with them unless you can look em' in the eyes, right?

Yes, this little felt cacti is inspired by the Christopher Walken SNL skit "Googly Eyes Gardner".  He is going to make a nice desk ornament for someone special.  He doesn't bite though, he's a little softie.

And here's a little tip for you that I share with experience.  Never talk with your hands while at someone's house who has a cactus in reach.  Ouch!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

A beautiful gift from beautiful Diana Evans!

A day in Paris. . . the most romantic city in the world.

Diana painted this custom watercolor of my husband and I in her favorite place, Paris. . . after being chosen as a winner of her custom watercolor monthly give-aways.  I can't express how incredibly touched I was when this package came in the mail, and I got all teary-eyed.  What a treasured and special piece of art this is, and the likeness is incredible!  We will cherish it always, and display it framed and matted in a prominent place in our home.  Thank you so much Diana!

Please be sure to visit my talented friend Diana Evans at her blog, and prepare to be inspired!