Daisy Nails

Daisy Nails

I’ve been falling behind on my weekly nail art. I’ve been mostly wearing them for two weeks now sometimes longer. Life certainly has changed since we got our kittens. I love spending time with them and it’s hard for me to tear myself away from them to do something else.

I’ve also been doing some projects for co-workers. My co-worker Sara is getting married next month and I designed her invitations. I also made a cute little wedding cake topper of her and her soon to be husband. And now her husband has me making groomsmen out of clay so he can give them as gifts. It’s been fun but very time consuming. It’s so rewarding to make something that the person you’re making it for loves.

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Riley and Emma being adorable.

Bride & Groom
Polymer clay wedding couple.

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Sunshine Nails

Sunshine Nails

These nails have a yellow to light gray gradient with subtle white polka dots. I like them because they remind me a of sunshine.

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Here’s another picture of those crazy kittens of mine. They are getting bigger everyday! They love their cat bed (which I am thankful for). Their favorite toys are a paper bag, a box that previously contained 12 cans of soda, and a paper ball. I like these toys because when they get to much wear and tear they are easily replaceable. Riley is letting Craig clip her nails when she’s tired but Emma isn’t having it. They have recently discovered how to get up onto the dining room table and disciplining them to do anything hasn’t been going so well… but maybe persistence is the key. Riley likes to be pet and picked up and Emma just wants to bite my fingers off. I love them both 🙂

Thoughts About Weightloss

Another random entry….

I am on a diet. Yes, that’s right you heard me! Why am I so defensive you might ask? One would think that choosing to watch what you eat in order to lose weight would be considered a good thing but surprisingly enough, I get more negative responses than positive ones…

I started out at 150 and my goal is to lose 20lbs. So far I’ve lost 15 of the 20. I started by downloaded a fitness app that, when you enter in the food you are eating, it keeps track of the nutrition information and most importantly the calories. Based on my height and weight, I need to eat about 1400 calories a day to lose .5lb a week. It’s been about 2 months now and it’s worked like a charm. If you’ve never done this before, you would be surprised at the amount of calories people consume on a daily basis without even knowing it! I can only eat at restaurants that have a low calorie menu. Breakfast places especially, serve meals with a calorie count that is through the roof! It’s no wonder there is an obesity problem in the US. I heard somewhere that soon, restaurants will be forced to provide the calorie content of their menu items. I think people might be less likely to eat something if they new how many calories were in it.

So why the negative reactions? I’m not really sure… I haven’t quite figured it out yet. I’m thinking that maybe when there are doughnuts or other sugary food around and I turn them down, the person who offered feels bad about themselves for choosing to eat them and directs their negative feelings towards me to try to make me feel bad? Of course, that’s all just speculation.

Another theory I have is that when I tell people I’m counting calories, they associate me eating less with having an eating disorder and that I am being unhealthy. But really, when you can have a 100 calorie snack you would probably rather have a whole banana than a half a cookie and so I find myself eating less junk and more fruits and vegetables. Besides that, to maintain my current weight I can only eat 1600 calories and adding 200 onto the amount I have been eating to lose weight is like practically nothing!

Anyway, it amazes me how personally people take it when I turn down their food. They tease me about it and attempt to put me down or they will try their hardest to break my will power. But the biggest factor in any diet is having will power of steal. If I decided to have a cheat day, I plan it ahead of time. If I start telling myself, it’s only one doughnut, then I will start talking myself into cheating more often and then I will fall right back into the same habits of over eating.

This isn’t the first time I’ve tried counting calories. Losing the weight is not easy but the hardest part is turning a diet into a lifestyle change. I haven’t been able to master that one as of yet. It’s so hard when there are so many yummy foods to eat.

Thanks for letting me vent and I hope you will not judge dieters too much. It’s nothing personal, I swear! A little encouragement and kind words go a long way in all aspects of life, especially when someone is accomplishing something that is not easy!

Watermelon Nails

watermelon nails

Sorry it’s been so long since I’ve posted anything. Craig and I got kittens! They are adorable and have been very distracting. They are about 8 weeks old I think… both are girls and their names are Emma & Riley. Most people think we are crazy to get not just one but TWO kittens but I am so glad we did. They keep each other entertained most of the time and I am less worried when I leave them home alone because they will keep one another company. They can, of course, be very naughty but aren’t they cute!

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Riley

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Emma

Plaid Nails and Secret Santa

Plaid Nails

Nail Polish Used
OPI Big Apple Red
China Glaze Liquid Leather
Finger Paints Key To My Art

Today was a really fun day! It was the last day off work before my vacation until next Friday. I made an ornament for my co-worker to give to her daughter as a Christmas present and she loved it! It made me so happy to be able to make something she was really proud to give her daughter.

1st Christmas Ornament

1st Christmas Ornament

It was also secret santa day. I got this really cute double tier silver platter type thing. We were challenged with trying to guess who gave us the gifts we got. Mine came with a card and so I started comparing the handwriting to all the Christmas cards I had received from my co-workers and that’s how I discovered who it had come from! I’m very proud of myself as you might have noticed 🙂 She suggested I put my nail polish on it and I could not think of a better use for it myself! What a great gift! The funnier and more embarrassing part of the story, however, was when I started trying to puzzle out who gave it to me with someone, while the person who gave it to me was in ear shot and I said I thought it seemed like something an older lady might give as a gift. Good thing the person had a sense of humor about it! Haha, oops!

Nail Polish Stand

I got my boss in the drawing for secret santa. I knew whoever I got I was going to make something for them with clay. She has two little girls who are into dancing, so I made two little girls out of clay wearing dancing outfits and glued them to a picture frame. To be completely honest I almost didn’t give them to her because I wasn’t sure it was a good enough gift… but she loved it so much I almost felt like crying. I couldn’t have asked for a better reaction. And people came up to me through-out the day just to tell me how much they liked my gift. Another one of my co-workers even commissioned one from me! I forgot to take a picture of it :/ but I’m sure I can still get one. Today was really what Christmas is all about for me. It’s so much fun to make someone’s day 🙂

Craig and I are going to try to attempt to go skiing in the next couple of days. I’m pretty nervous about it since I haven’t actually skied in probably 20 years… I hope I don’t chicken out!

Merry Christmas everyone!

Ashlyn

Ashlyn Illustration

I did this drawing of my niece Ashlyn. It’s been such a long time since I’ve seen her and I miss her so much. I’ve been begging her for a recent photo so I could (digitally) paint a picture of her. I realize that this a is a very stylized rendition and I did it that way because I am infatuated with the style of an artist named Kelly Vivanco. I love how she exaggerates the eyes and uses thick dark outlines and bright colors. I don’t claim to be anywhere near as good as she is and I wish I could have gone a little bit further with it but my computer can’t keep up with photoshop these days.

Speaking of computers! Craig is going to build me a new one, he already ordered the parts. I’m so stoked, I haven’t had a new computer in about 7 years. I have had a few upgrades on various parts to keep it going, but I’m long passed due for a new one. I can’t wait!

Anyways, There is not much I can do to show Ashlyn how important she is to me when we don’t get to see each other. I don’t want all of our memories of each other during this time to be non existent. I want to create a good memory… so I hope she likes it 🙂

Ashlyn Side-by-side

The original drawing, which I did in pencil and marker is on the left and the photo I used for reference is on the right.

A random journal entry

Okay, something a little different for today! A random journal entry.

I never realized until today how much I love buying art. I spend a lot of my time on my computer looking at design. I look at interior design, graphic design, nail art, photography, sculpture, and illustration. I know when I see something I love because it brings out some kind of emotional response in me… when the beauty of it is beyond breathtaking. The kind of art a person loves says just as much about that person as the actual art says about the artist and it’s a nice reminder to me to remember (and love) who I am and it’s heart warming to know that even though I don’t know this person, I share something with them.

When I buy someone’s art it’s like having a piece of their personality in my home and I feel a strange sort of bond with a person that I’ve never met. What makes it even more special for me is because I get to validate the artist, I get to let that person know that I value their passion in life and I think that feeling would be amazing. I know what it means to be an artist. It’s tough because the quality of your work is all you have to go on, and when you have to be creative every single day, conjuring it can sometimes prove to be difficult. You are also putting yourself out there for someone else to judge and of course you want their approval.

Anyway, I get a strange sort of thrill when I make a final purchase and I anticipate everything I possibly can about it. When it will get here, what kind of frames should I buy, where I should hang it in my home. I also like the prospect of being able to not only share a little bit about myself, but also share some of the artist’s work with you.

Here are the prints I bought today by Loish van Baarke. I hope you like them. Left | Middle | Right

Lois van Baarle | Illustrator