Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year

Happy New Year, Loves! My wish for you is that this will be the year you put all your dreams into action and start living the life you deserve!

Have you discovered your one word for 2013 (mine is Self-Care)? I stumbled upon this sweet website, This Year I Will, if you need a little inspiration. Need more inspiration? Check out this recording by Liz Lamoreux reading the words from Ali Edwards One Little Word. Lovely.


Quote - Heartbeat

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The goal of life is to make your heartbeat match the beat of the universe, to match your nature with nature.  ~Joseph Campbell

Friday, December 28, 2012

2012 Reading List

Here is my completed 2012 reading list in no particular order:

1) A Sweethaven Summer by Courtney Walsh
2) All I Did Was Listen by Rachel Awes
3) Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire
4) Brave Intuitive Painting by Flora Bowley
5) Creative Pilgrimage by Jenny Doh
6) Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
7) Desire to Inspire by Christine Mason Miller
8) Emotional Freedom by Judith Orloff
9) Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
10-12) Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy by EL James
13) Finding Your Own North Star by Martha Beck
14) Half the Sky by Nickolas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn
15-24) House of Night series by P.C. & Kristen Cast (Books 1-10 currently available)
25) Inner Excavation by Liz Lamoreux
26) Love the One You're With by Emily Giffin
27) Mixed-Media Girls by Suzi Blu
28-39) Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris (Books 1-12 currently available)
40) The Cradle by Patrick Somerville
41) The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
42) The Fire Starter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte
43-45) The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins
46-51) The Immortals series by Alyson Noel (Books 1-6)
52) The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul by Deborah Rodriquez
53) The Best of Me by Nicholas Sparks
54) This I Know by Susannah Conway
55) This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper
56) A Dog's Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron
57) Bossypants by Tina Fey

I can't believe I read 57 books this past year! Wow! For 2012, I got in touch with my inner teenager with various vampire-type books, finally read the books that one of my favorite shows True Blood is based upon (Sookie Stackhouse), read the series that was most talked about this year (Fifty) and have no idea why I keep reading the series (Sorry, Ladies, but the writing was atrocious!) If you agree the most hilarious review ever can be viewed here.)), put off reading a series (The Hunger Games) because I thought it would be too brutal towards children and ended up devouring it (The 1st book a week before the movie came out and the 2nd and 3rd book the following weekend.), had my world turned upside down by the violence towards women in Half the Sky, and saw the world though a pup's eyes.


Thursday, December 27, 2012

2013 Word-of-the-Year

Each year I pick a word to set as my intention for the year. A word that will support me in living out my dreams and to guide me as I make my way through uncharted waters. Honestly, it's not me who picks the word but the other way around.

For 2012, my word was seek and at first it seemed that this word really didn't fit my year. After further reflection and heaps of journaling it seems that seek was right on the money. In the past year I have explored new interests not just in artistic endeavors but also in deepening my spirituality, trying new activities, joining new groups locally and online, trying new classes, and researching and reading in subjects that interest me. I got involved, put myself out there, and got out of the house more. I let go of a great deal of my need for perfection and in turn discovered that I've been missing out on the process in pursuit of the end product. The process really is where it's all at! 

In 2012, I sought tranquility in my home through organization, releasing the clutter, using safer cleaning products, and embracing simplicity. I sought peace within my heart by telling my story, what hurts the most, and speaking my truth. I set myself free by chucking the sensitive label out the door and embracing the gift of my sensitivity, label free. Seek.

My word for the coming year is full of so much possibility packed in two little words. For 2013, I wish to delve into self-care

While I packed my schedule with tons of art and activities in 2012 I noticed that I allowed very little time for self-care. I spend way too much time last year sick or recovering from one problem after another. In fact, while I type this I'm recovering from a yucky cold. I've had colds, respiratory infections, sinus issues (that let to a surgery), a routine endoscopy and colonoscopy (that turned into anything but routine), and then add insult to injury I had a piece of bone that had to be surgically removed from my mouth (leftover bone from wisdom teeth removed a good 15 years ago). I'm laughing not complaining because these were inconvenient (and some painful) but none were life-threatening. It is what it is. 

I digress... I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired! I want my good health back and I want my waistline back! I want energy and I want to be able to walk up a flight of stairs without (sounding like) I need a respirator! I want to wake up feeling well rested and I want the strength to open a jar of pickles! Why are you laughing? I seriously can't open a jar to save my life! LOL. Ok, maybe to save my life but not before then. :-D

Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah.

This is the year I take care of myself mind, body, and spirit. 



Have you picked your 2013 word yet? Here are a few helpful resources to hone in on your word:

Quote - Radiate love

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Let your light shine. Be a source of strength and courage. Share your wisdom. Radiate love.  ~Wilferd Peterson

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Wishcasting Wednesday :: What do you wish for?

Thank you for joining me for this week's Wishcasting Wednesday. If you'd like to join this magical circle of dreamers and doers, please visit Jamie Ridler Studios.

This week's prompt:

What do you wish for?

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For the last Wishcasting Wednesday of 2012, I wish to release myself from any disappointments, hurts, and frustrations I carry with me from this year and the past. I wish to begin this new year with a clean slate and a fresh start. New dreams and a fresh prospective.


Monday, December 24, 2012

Travel Adventures + Retail Therapy

I was in Huntsville, AL last week for work and was surprised by the great shopping options. They have an Anthropologie and I don't in Panama City. Boo! That may be a good thing or else I would stay broke! LOL. Anthro never ceases to amaze me with the showroom eye candy they call a store. I want to move into their store. :-D

Rocking my new Anthro fingerless gloves.

Chandelier lighting in the gorgeous hotel I stayed in (SpringHill Suites).

A section of artwork on my floor at the hotel.


Quote - The Spirit of Christmas

Would that the spirit of Christmas
could live within our hearts
every day of the year.
~Charles Dickens

Have a very Merry Christmas! 
Happy birthday, Jesus!


Sunday, December 23, 2012

Tried and True Sweet Christmas Goodies

One of my favorite parts of Christmastime is making sweet goodies for loved ones. I have a couple tried and true recipes that I turn to each year that never fail to delight.

First is my homemade fudge with walnuts (+ a small portion without nuts), buckeye bars (which I think are even better than Reese's Cups!), and chocolate truffles (rich and melt in your mouth).

This recipe is so simple you can make it in a microwave, which I do. Before finding this recipe I tried and failed making fudge on the stovetop more times than I can count. I almost gave up until I tried this version in the microwave and BAM! Nailed it! Recipe for Fantasy Fudge from Kraft.

Some folks make buckeye balls but I prefer them in bar form. I don't even like peanut butter (yeah, I've heard it all before.) but I LOVE these bars! Recipe for Buckeye Bars.

I stumbled upon the truffle recipe in a Kraft Foods magazine several years ago. They are super easy to make but a bit messy. I've never tried to alter the recipe just the toppings or sometimes no toppings. I'm sure you could alter it and come up with some awesome versions but I like the simplicity of the recipe and the sweet creamy taste without no changes. I used chocolate sprinkles, red and green colored sugar crystals, and peppermint sugar crystals. Recipe for Chocolate Truffles.

This recipe is a newbie for me. I've made monkey bread before but this one kicks it up a notch. Cream cheese makes everything better! Recipe for Cream Cheese Monkey Bread.

Sweetly Yours,

Saturday, December 22, 2012

DIY Feather Angel Wings

I was so absorbed in making these that I forgot to take pics along the way for step outs. They're simple to make so I'll just type it out. LOL. I unfolded a cardboard box (Recycle!) drew one wing with pencil. I cut that wing out, flipped it over, placed it on top of the remaining cardboard, traced around it, and then cut that piece out. This way you have two identical angel wings! I painted a sloppy coat of white paint on the side that I would be coating with the feathers (in case any cardboard shows through) and around my edges. Once the paint is dry, lay out a few feathers (I purchased mine from Hobby Lobby) to get an idea of how you want to place your feathers. I used a hot glue gun to secure my feathers basically only glueing one side of the feather so I could overlap them (sliding the next feather under the unglued portion of previous feather). Once I was happy with the feathers I added a coat of Glitter Blast (in diamond dust) because everything is better with glitter! I strung a few bells and glued to the backside and adhered the wings to my wall with double-sided tape over my fuchsia + turquoise Christmas vignette. Voila!