Friday, January 27, 2012

Julie Nutting's Class

I recently took a class with Julie Nutting, artist and author of Collage Couture.  She taught us how to make these wonderful  Valentine paper dolls.  Three different dolls all with the same body.  I love them.  Pick up her book.  This is something I could make daily and feel like I really created something cute.
The other day my friend Cynthia came over and we created canvases together.  These are unusual colors for me to use.  I usually love the cool tones…purples, pinks, blues, and teals.  The texture on this canvas was created with encaustic wax, which was fun to play with.
Here is Cynthia’s beautiful encaustic piece.  It has a lovely old world look to it. 
It was a fun day and I hope we do it again soon.
My next paper doll is going to be a larger canvas.  I think I want to go big on the dress, with vibrant colors.  Stay tuned!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Fun For Me

Prior to Christmas, I made two paintings that I liked quite a bit.  They were both created as white elephant gifts for the two creative book clubs I participate in.  The parameters of the white elephant swap was that the gifts had to be handmade and they had to be something I would want to keep.  I think I accomplished that.  I had a lot of fun painting them and I really wanted to keep both of these paintings. 

I was so excited that at both clubs the paintings were very well received.  My girlfriend affectionately calls them my "big head girls."  

By the end of the swaps, the paintings went to two lovely ladies that I feel confident are happy with them.  If I couldn't keep them, I am happy that they went to good homes and will be well loved.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Utter Rambling

I pretty much spent December in bed. I have a herniated disk and there's an excruted fragment lodged against the nerve, which is causing serious (I mean sometimes a 10) pain. Taylor graciously put up some christmas decorations for us. We had a lovely low-key christmas. Some of my kids and inlaws came over. We had to cater it because I couldn't cook. One of my grand babies was here and he was a total joy. He's too young to understand anything about Christmas. Still, he was so fun.

I saw my doctor on December 5 and didn't get the MRI until the 31st. Finally got the results and my options on January 10th. That's more than a month of taking meds to get through it. I have pain killers but I hate them almost as much as the pain. I have a nerve med that finally seems to be helping, but it makes my brain crazier than it already is. My memory is completely shot. I don't know how it can get worse, but it is!

I was just telling a couple of friends that the worse part about these types of illnesses is that they are invisible. No one can see them. My insecurities come out and I wonder if people think it's not real, or maybe I'm a hypochondriac, or worse, just a complainer. Truth is, sometimes I am a complainer, but that's because I get sick of the pain and I get sick of waiting.

When I got the results of my most recent MRI, at first I was elated because I felt sort of validated that, YES, there is something wrong with me. I'm not crazy! Course, then the realization that there's something wrong with me sunk in.

The good news is that I am not alone. I have a wonderful husband who always takes care of me. I have a fabulous daughter who helps me more than she'll ever know. My very loving sister and my best friend both check in on me even if only for some phone company.

I have a home and food and two cars. I have a room full of art supplies. I can walk and I can think. These two things are difficult for me, but I can do them.

I'm taking an online class right now with some girlfriends because that's what I can do. I'm playing Words with Friends with my son-in-law because that's another thing I can do. I spend time with friends as much as possible because it makes me happy and that's what I can do.

It's amazing the things you think about when you're incapacitated. I've been making lots of lists. Lists of goals for 2012, art supplies that I need, that I don't need, bills, things to do, prayers, gratitude lists, lists of things I want to learn. Then there's the lists of things I need to do to the house, the yard, buy for the house...bla bla bla!

I saw the Ali Edwards challenge and decided I needed a WORD. I had to make a list about that.

2012 Word:  HEALTH

What does it mean to me?
Getting my back as strong as possible
Lose weight: be aware of everything that goes in my mouth
Exercise: physical therapy, walking, 
Drink water
Feeling good about myself: hair, skin, nails
Keeping my brain active: games, reading, art, 
Clearing the clutter from my home and my life

Dr. oz says:
Eat mindfully with full concentration to get the maximum pleasure from food and to keep from slipping back to old patterns. 
It's easy to slip back. You will have to fight to get back on track.  
You are trying to rewire your brain. It takes less time to slip back then it does to stay on track. 
Stress affects the pleasure center in the brain that makes you crave and want to eat more.
Exercise, do art, play w grandbaby, meditation. 

Jeez, life still goes on with or without lists.

Made the decision to get more injections in my back. It should help the pain, and keep me away from the surgeon for awhile. So, here I sit waiting just to get an appointment with the pain specialist who will give me the injections.

I'm thinking I need to get over it and perhaps make another list about something.