Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Why I like my Mac...

Because it understands women--that with every request we make is implied the word "now". It gets me. =)

I'll bet I've spent days of my life--maybe even weeks--waiting for my computer to get in gear. Waiting for downloads, waiting for reboots, waiting for it to turn ON. Waiting, waiting...

Mac is NOW.

About beliefs and foundations

It seems to me that the only true foundation we have is what we hold to inside ourselves. It is the beliefs we choose to embrace and make part of us.

I've spent much of life thinking and rethinking, making a decision, and then deciding something different later. I like to be flexible. Yet, there are some beliefs, some ideas that serve us greatly. These are our foundations.

If you find a belief that brings you joy and comfort, hold to that belief. Find others to add to it. Create your own foundation for what "life's all about" with the thoughts you think and the beliefs you embrace.

How firm our foundation is entirely up to us. We can choose to make it sturdy, or.. let it be blown away, like sand in the wind. Choose beliefs that serve you and support increased life for all. Each day we are building. What do you want to create?

Some beliefs I hold to:

The Universe is a kind, loving and supportive place, and even the challenges are for our growth and learning.

Life is about learning and discovery.

Help and guidance is always available.

Expression in all forms (art, writing, song, etc) makes the heart sing.

People are good, especially as they clear away limiting beliefs.

There is only abundance.

Connection is bliss.

and...with some input from the Beatles...

Love is all you need:

There's nothing you can do that can't be done.
Nothing you can sing that can't be sung.
Nothing you can say but you can learn how
to play the game. It's easy.
Nothing you can make that can't be made.
No one you can save that can't be saved.
Nothing you can do but you can learn how
to be you in time. It's easy.

All you need is love. All you need is love.
Love is all you need.

Nothing you can know that isn't known.
Nothing you can see that isn't shown.
Nowhere you can be that isn't where you're meant to be.

It's easy.

My favorite line:

Nowhere you can be that isn't where you're meant to be.

Wherever we are, wherever this day finds us, is right for us.

I know, I have my own things I am resisting about this day. But there is wisdom to be found in asking, Why? What creates this resistance in me? Things aren't always as we prefer in the moment, but later, they seem perfected orchestrated, as we open to the lesson.

Here's to a New Year of healthy foundations.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Adios and Letting Go

It is a good word, rolling off the tongue
no matter what language you were born with,
Use it. Learn where it begins,
the small alphabet of departure,
how long it takes to think of it,
then say, then be heard.

Marry it. More than any golden ring,
it shines, it shines.
Wear it on every finger
till your hands dance,
touching everything easily,
letting everything, easily, go.

Strap it to your back like wings.
Or a kite-tail. The stream of air behind a jet.
If you are known for anything,
let it be the way you rise out of sight
when your work is finished.

Think of things that linger: leaves,
cartons and napkins, the damp smell of mold.

Think of things that disappear.

Think of what you love best,
what brings tears into your eyes.

Something that said adios to you
before you knew what it meant
or how long it was for.

Explain little, the word explains itself.
Later perhaps. Lessons following lessons,
like silence following sound.

~Naomi Shihab Nye

Thursday, December 18, 2008

It's getting better...

Yep, it's a scarf.  I officially knitted my first scarf.  I'm as surprised as you are.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Knit Pics--a washcloth scarf???

Sometimes things don't go as planned.  Especially when you are beginning a new hobby...like, oh, I don't know...let's say, Knitting, for instance.  This is what happens if you cast on 72 stitches (or loops?  whatever...) and then run out of yarn.  Apparently, the knitting expands in width--to almost double.  Well-noted!

But who doesn't like a nice wash-cloth scarf you can where when it's breezy in the tub.  You are naked, afterall...gotta warm up somehow!

Happy to report, Washcloth #2 was a success. Size 10 needles, 40 stitches on, and 32 bumpy row thingy's--my sister Lani taught me that technical term.  Thanks, Lan.

It's still not very loose looking, and I don't know how I can knit any looser...so I'm guessing my needles are too small?  Hmmm....   The cool part is that this one only took two days, and I only knitted when I was driving (well, riding as my HUSBAND drove...I really should clarify), watching movies, or any other time I was just sitting on my duff.  Like when I was watching the How to videos about my dear, sweet iMac.... or even while waiting for our table at Carabba's.  Knitting really fits in well!  AND you get washcloth scarves.  How cool is that?

And then of course, more fun on the Photobooth with my buddy, J.  Don't we look funky?  He's a riot.  Having kids to play with is a good thing.  =)

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Mmm...banana bread

from Lindsey Brackeen:

My Favorite Banana Bread

4 mashed bananas
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup butter
1 1/3 cups natural cane sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Crumble Topping:
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1tablespoon flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts or pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour two 9x5 inch loaf pans.
Combine banana and sour cream. Set aside. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla and banana mixture. Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt; stir into the banana mixture. Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan or pans. Mix all topping ingredients and crumble across the top of the batter.
Bake for 40 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean.

Blast from the Past and Polaroid Tool

Remember this? It's still as awesome as it was in '84. Let's see...that's...24 years ago! (yipes--had to pull out the calculator on that one!) Oh me oh my, my life is flying by...

And then I came across this cool tool. I makes you photos look like Polaroids...but I think you need a Mac to use it...maybe not. But how's that for a blast from the past?

Polaroid Tool - oh, and I just noticed there is a PC version if you scroll down.

Have fun!

Friday, December 05, 2008

Lookie what I got!

from Christy's Creations


From the way cool Bolsa Chica blog!

Must be my lucky day. I love snowmen and Brown and turquoise together. I just decorated my bathroom in those colors! THANK YOU!!

And the Winner is....

Congratulations, Ginny! This was just too fun! If you'd like to be notified when I have more give-aways, paintings, or soaps, just fill out this form below:

Freebie for you & Drawing Notice...

I realized this morning I didn't say what time I'd stop taking entries...so let's make it 12 pm Mountain time. Shortly after that, I'll be posting the winner...so watch for it. Now for the freebie.

A friend of mine is giving away these incredible booklets and audios called Philosopher's Notes. He's says, "They are kind of like Cliff Notes...only way cooler." They are certainly COOL! He has a goal to give away a million of them, so I'm getting the word out. I'm passionate about reading great books from conscious people, and Brian Johnson makes this easy by writing up a shorter version, filled with gems from the real books...but condensed into about 6 pages. He's also made audios of each one as well. How cool is that? You can find them here, for FREE, until December 31st.

Enjoy them, from Creating Consciously!

Philosopher's Notes

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Blog Give-Away Day!

It's give-away day and I have something special for you. Up for grabs today (and for a couple more days, as suggested by the people at Sew, Mama, Sew) are these 3 handcrafted soaps. Two are lightly scented with "Endless Love" and the brown layered guy is "Hint of Mint Chocolate."

Handmade soap is truly an affordable luxury. It can transform your daily shower or bath into a fragrant, sudsy escape. Handmade soap gently cleans without stripping your skin's natural oils. The result is clean, soft, healthy-feeling skin. You can try some now for free, through this give-away day.

As well as a PRINT of one of my paintings, "Alice Contemplates Her Apple." 8" x 8"

TO ENTER: Simply leave a comment on this post and on Friday, December 5th, I will randomly draw one of the names to receive these gifts. Easy as Pie!

I will ship to the United States, Canada, Australia and the UK--or if you know your country has reasonable shipping prices, that's great too.

And, for all who visit today, I am giving away a great little PDF booklet on the high joy vibration of gratitude. Download here.

For more fabulous handmade giveaways visit sew, mama, sew for a list of bloggers participating in GiVeAwAy DAY!

Knit-picky or knot....

So, my friend Marie gave me a washcloth that I adore, and I've always wanted to know how people make them. And since that time I keep running into people with a pile of string and knitwork or crochet in their laps, so I've decided to try my hand at it, armed with nothing but the Internet. AND, I am super excited to start a hobby that I never want to sell. It's just for me, and just to relax me, and make movie time a bit more productive.

I've found some great videos to help me along, because when it comes to knitting, I have no clue. I think it's just a bunch of knots tied together, and it is, but it sure is clever. Marie can knit all sorts of fun things, and I was really impressed with some of her projects. For me, I'll be thrilled with a washcloth.

I gave it a go last night and....well...I started with the 100% cotton yarn for washcloths, and I'm thinking this might have been a bad idea. I did make a cute little square I might wrap around a bar of soap, but the cotton yarn seems to catch on itself. So I need to run to the store and try some more slippery yarn for practice. But, I can now officially cast on, and do the knit stitch. And even a little binding. But...the sample piece is not very pretty, and even has one hole, so I must have missed a stitch. Some of the rows are haywire. But I'm getting a kick out of it. What a funny thing to do with sticks and yarn!

Here's a great video I found that talks about Continental Knitting, which I am learning, rather than the "throwing" kind. Whatever that means. I learned it from this site, which I like because the person in the videos sounds like Maggie Gylenhaal. I loved her character in Stranger Than Fiction, so it's fun to pretend she's teaching me to knit. Didn't her character seem like she could knit?

Here are some great beginning knitting links as well:

Knitting Help - My Favorite

Hipster Knitting

Tips for the Beginner

Simple Dishcloth Pattern

CyberSeams: How to Knit Videos

Monkey See Videos

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

So cute, so tiny!

Welcome Caleb! These are my brothers, and Jared, in the blue, is the Big Daddy now. Isn't this baby precious? He was only 4 lbs. 14 oz.--notice the size of Jared's hands compared to this little guy. I got to stroke his sweet baby hair and touch his cheek today. Hurry and grow little guy, so we can hold you!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

And the world welcomes in a new life...

No, this isn't one of mine, but isn't he cute? Today, my little brother became a Daddy. I had the chance to talk with Jared and Liz last night about contractions the upcoming events. Liz was scheduled to be induced tonight, but little Caleb didn't like that idea, and he made an entrance around 2 this afternoon. It was hard to know what to say last night, knowing how profoundly the next 24 hours would change their lives forever. But, now they know too.

I finally feel like an aunt. Since I've been the grandchild-bearer so far out of my mom's 5 kids, I have to admit, it was much easier to see the family expand this way. Thanks, Liz!

We'll go see the little guy tomorrow and get some good pictures. Isn't that what an aunt would do?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

You've got to love her...

This is my mom. She's in Korea right now, apparently examining the large leaves there. She's out being an adventuresome soul. She's pretty darn lovable.

Feeling Mellow....

Feeling mellow today. I mentioned on facebook that sometimes you just need to tell you kids 'no'. Like when they say, "Mom, will you count to a million?" or "Mom, will you smell my feet." I think I'd choose the feet, if I had to pick. But today I just said no. =) But 4 year olds are great.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Ah...Blessed Speed....

We finally got an Internet connection speed that can keep up with me--well, almost. But it's awesome. And with the wireless filling our whole home, I can sit anywhere. For instance, right now I'm sitting with the fam watching 10,000 B.C. (well, the ClearPlay version--I hate violence). That Saber Tooth Tiger is awesome! And the Mammoths. Anyway...we were without this caliber of Internet for quite some time, and now it feels like heaven. Nothing really messes up my flow like w a i t i n g....for....SSSSSS LLLLLLL OOOOOOO WWWWW pages. Uck! Those days are over!

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Musings and Camera Fun on November 1

Fun with Self-Portraits...

Watch my finger glow!

Have you seen these pictures on the Internet--random poses and self-portraits. I like how you just catch yourself here and there, and snap the shot. Kind of fun.

I have to say, I really like my hands. They are probably my favorite attribute--and the ones I see the most, especially when I am writing away.

Last year's boots that I'm excited to wear again this year...

Then, the random self portrait, taken in our new bathroom. I love tile. It's so earthy.

Have you ever really looked yourself in the eyes? I seem to catch myself with a serious face quite often. Which is strange, because I don't FEEL all that serious. Aren't eyes amazing, though? They capture a million different emotions--and then when you look at them very close up, they have another million facets. I love eyes. I think I have eye-close-ups for each of my children.

Hmmm...hubby and daughter just got home. Steph watched The Crucible--a play her school was putting on, and Randy went to fetch her. Time to stop musing...

Friday, October 24, 2008

My 2nd Baby is here!

Why is it that writing a book is so much like birthing a child? I do not know--but it's the most fitting analogy I've found. The ideas for this book came to me on a Monday, not too far back, and I had the bulk of it completed a week later. I love it when the ideas just flow. It's called I Create Vitality: The Art of Living in High Joy Vibrations. And the first few chapters covers vibration in an incredibly scientific way--I love to have things make sense to my heart--and MIND!

You can learn more about it by clicking the image above. And if you happen to know my middle name, I'll give you a free copy. Just shoot me an email and I'll send it on it to you.

Monkey See Monkey Do?

I have found the coolest site filled with how-to videos! You can find it here or click on the image above. Yesterday I watched a video on soap-making, and today, I'm learning video editing. Oh, there is certainly a Mac computer in my future!

Monkey See is kind of like You Tube--but the videos are fast and crystal clear--way better quality. What have you always wanted to know how to do? Check it out!

Speaking of YouTube, if you go to splandoo.com--you can learn to download videos to your computer so you can watch them offline as well. How cool is that?

Off to learn more cool things...

Monday, October 20, 2008

Too Funny for Halloween

This picture says it all, doesn't it? You've got to admire the creativity! Thanks, Michelle, for giving me a laugh!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Carve your pumpkin....

You can practice online here--it's far less messy!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

No Middle Ground?

Either you do or you don’t.

I realized last night, that with faith and living the conscious life—you either believe it and experience it—or you don’t. There is no middle ground.

So much of my life I’ve spend between the gears, on all sorts of things. Stuck between decisions, unwilling to fulling give myself to anything. Do you remember learning to drive a stick shift? Remember that awful sound between gears? Okay, maybe you weren’t as bad as a stick shift driver as I was (No comments, Jared!) But still, you can imagine the analogy, can you not?

Either you have faith, create your life consciously, expect miracles—or you don’t. It’s when you are stuck somewhere in between that life gets painful.

I was thinking last night of two types of people. Those who don’t believe in “something out there” and those that expect miracles. Those who don’t believe, leave it up to themselves. They are bound and determined to make whatever it is they desire happen—no matter what. After all, it’s up to them, right? I commend the tenacity this displays. The pitfall is not recognizing or realizing all the help and love available to them.

Then there’s another kind of person, who expects miracles—who expects input from God and the Universe, direction, and help! But, this method can also run amuck if you have…a plan. A way you expect things to go along the way as you expect something to turn out. If you detach from all the “how’s”—this method still works pretty well.

But what if you were to combine the two. Put your energy completely into something, and expect miracles along the way. You press forward, ready to do it all, but know some things are going to come about quite easily. If we forge ahead and expect that THIS thing was going to be easy, or that the help would show up at THIS particular juncture—we might be in for disappointment. But if you focus instead on accomplishing the task no matter what, and are open to help however it comes—you accomplish, and you don’t end up doing it all by yourself either.

Forge ahead, let nothing dissuade you, and notice the miracles as they drop in.

I think God wants us to be SERIOUS. Not frumpy and grumpy—but certain, sincere, and sure of what we want. When we ask and set out to create—we’ve got to really mean it to experience the success we desire.

Huh--still not middle ground--but there certainly is synergy. I choose the best of both worlds.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

The only thing this picture is missing is...

Well, ME of course. And I can't tell if this one has tan leather seats or not--because I'd like those as well. They only seat 4--darn--but they are so cute! I would have never thought in a million years I'd get a bug, after my boyfriends-with-bugs that breakdown history. But I love the new version. So this counts as an entirely different car, in my opinion. Ideal, would be the brand new covertibles. But--26 grand. Ouch. But the standards are great, too! I'd like a pretty green one with tan leather interior, in great shape, and under 50,000 miles--for under $6,000--or whatever makes my payment around $130/month. Do you doubt me? I've already seen them in blue and silver, fitting the bill. There's bound to be a cute green one out there!

The Gecko Green metallics are pretty nice as well. You can see them here.

Too Funny

Use this the next time you need to give an apology. I found it on my friend Marie's site. She finds such clever things.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Friends for life

This was at the Ropes course--we where all standing on a tiny, 3 foot platform, holding on to each other for dear life (the game was that if we fell off, we'd die in the "ocean").

This is after we made it through the Ropes Course--see the next post for some great adventurous shots! Here we have top row: Camille, Jamie, Craig, Brandon, Doug, & Marie (yes, the Marie I'm always talking about). and then bottom: Me, Katrina, Carrie, & Andrea.
Getting Goofy! We'd been through alot together by this point--time for some fun!

Now for the most exciting part--

Hmm...so what's Apryl up to? This is Doug helping me get my gear on. What's the gear for? You'll see!

And a hard hat? Doing some mining? I look like I could have been on Zoolander. I like this picture with my cute pointy nose profile--too funny!

And up we go. There were metal prongs to use to climb with--about 1-2 feet apart--18 of them total.

A little perspective. I don't know how tall it was. 35 feet or so? Enough to freak me out.

Now, by this point, that little pole is wobbling like crazy as well. The idea is to stand up--and then jump!

This moment was one of the hardest in my life. My muscles were all shaking and starting to cramp up. If you have any issue with heights--you'll understand! Just stand up, I kept telling myself. See that little tiny platform? The other trees look close, but they weren't! Nothing to hold on to!

I did it! And then this next picture is just after I jumped. It looks kind of like a flying squirrel. It was actually harder to get from the pole top to the platform and stand up, than it was to jump. But that second before the ropes tighten was interesting! I made Janine look me in the eye and promise she wouldn't let me fall before I'd go up the pole. I had a neighbor who's husband fell and had a brain injury that really messed him up...because the spotter wasn't paying attention (it was a scout thing--so much for be prepared)...so I wanted to be extra sure I could trust Janine. She was awesome!

This is Doug hugging me (I clung right to him--so glad I made it and didn't die!) and then Jamie in the red, Andrea, my buddy in the white, and then Becca in the stripes. They were so awesome to root me on!

I did it! And it's true--life is different after doing something like this. Most things in life are not very scary at all, compared to what this was for me. It's a great lesson in perspective!