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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Find inspiration

As you may be able to tell from my last post, creativity has been on my mind lately. Well, I guess coming from a writer that isn’t surprising, huh? This week, and many to come, I’ll be playing with the other stuff I like to do. Here’s a little bit of what’s I’ll be doing:

  • Reupholster an ottoman. It belonged to my grandmother and the fabric is faded, torn and outdated. But I have to have small pieces of my grandmother in my home. I have the fabric and some fabric glue then later I may find upholstery tacks for embellishment.
  • Work on a painting. There has been an idea for a painting brewing in my mind for some time. The image is clear and I already have a name – now I can’t wait to begin. Yesterday I purchased paint markers, which I believe will make this project come to life.
  • Sewing, alterations & up-cycling. I have a small pile of sewing and alteration-like projects waiting. (I love up-cycling old clothes into new designs.) And there is a bin in the laundry room that contains the next group of sewing projects.

That’s just the beginning of what my mind is on and I’ll definitely share with you.

Sometimes very small things inspire me: a thought, a word or a picture. It’s what I do with the inspiration that matters.

petularenee  on Pinterest

I’ve found quite a few places to help fuel my creativity. And, if you’re like me, you know one of those places is Pinterest. More than 12 million people pin to their Pinterest boards so there is relatively no limit to the images you’ll find. I was resistant to Pinterest at first, but now I spend quite a bit of time browsing, liking and following. If you haven’t already, check out my Pinterest boards. One of my boards, Crafty Creations, is full of inspiring ideas – some of which I’m going to try.

SloDive  Dive Into Inspiration  slodive  on PinterestThere is some inspiration to be found on a board I would have never thought to click on: SloDive: Dive Into Inspiration. I was surprised to find that tattoos and body art are quite capable of exciting my muse. Take a gander and see what they do for you.

I also find inspiration in magazines, nature, paintings and sometimes television. There isn’t enough time and space to list everything I read or view, but I figure you have some ideas to share as well.

Where do you find inspiration? Is it Pinterest, YouTube, a particular magazine or book, blogs? Leave a comment and share what fuels your muse – I’m sure you’ll give me and other readers ideas to play with.

Don’t forget to comment and stay tuned for my project updates in the weeks to come.


Monday, October 28, 2013

Have you implemented what your “creative” revealed?

I’m a writer. Way deep down in my heart where the first beat began I’ve always been a writer. It didn’t really show up ‘til I was about 5 years old (really!) and sometimes it wasn’t actually in writing that it appeared. I had magical, mysterious, fantastical stories rolling around in my head.

A “regular” person – you know, those non-writers – think that it’s just imagination or daydreaming, but when you’re a writer those images birth words. It’s pretty much the same for every artist. Have you ever wondered how a photographer can look at the sun, trees and flowers and produce a photograph worthy of an art gallery? Us “regular” folks – the non-photographers (I couldn’t resist) – can take the same exact picture and it’ll be nice or pretty or just plain bad.

That’s the nature of the creative beast.

Sometimes in the midst of those creative outbursts a therapeutic moment occurs. When that creativity is present there is a message for yourself that springs forth. Today I found one of those messages in a post I wrote in 2010. Funny, cause that happens pretty frequently, but infrequently enough that I often forget the magnitude of the message.

Which side of the moon screenshot 2010The post, Which side of the moon?, is one of a quite a few posts where I write about my thoughts, what I want to do, what I think I should have done already, what I should do and what I’m going to do. It’s usually around the end or beginning of a year when I feel the pressure of not having accomplished something or delayed in proceeding with said accomplishment.

The delay often starts and ends with my health. Ahhh, such an ongoing issue. But, do you know what? I don’t worry about my health – it’s often on my mind, but not among the things that bother me. At least not consciously.

What’s important is the question, uh, the answer to that problem. How do I surpass what keeps me from advancing? Unless you have a true answer that includes knowledge of my everyday life then I encourage you to think of that as a rhetoric question.

Today, before the day ends, spend a little time being creative and see what surprises you.




hands writing in bookHere we go: What have you created, written or planned that you haven’t reviewed lately? Are you truly meeting the goals you’ve set for yourself? And if you have, please share how you’re making that happen.


4 Holiday Gifts to Melt the Hearts of Mothers-in-Law

Guest post

Disclosure: Included links will direct you to retail sites. I have no affiliation with these retailers. For complete information read my disclosure policy.

Whether your mother-in-law is your closest gal pal or arch rival, you're obligated to give her a nice Christmas gift. Your responsibility to your husband is to shop for a gift that helps strengthen the bond between his two favorite women. Release your inner creativity, put in some thoughtfulness and use pretty wrapping paper to make this year's present a success. Make your mother-in-law smile with any of the following holiday gift ideas.

Photographic Memories

Celebrate your husband's family and childhood by creating a photo collage that highlights family photos from childhood to present day. Gather baby, school, sports, holiday, vacation, and college pictures and print them onto a quilt or frame them in an elegant over-the-door scroll frame. Scroll frames can be found online at Bed, Bath and Beyond for $29.99. Print pictures in black and white for a nostalgic feel or upload them to a digital frame that she can keep on her kitchen counter or bedside table.

Vera Wang Floral Arrangement

1116_ftd_flowersIf your mother-in-law is like most women, receiving flowers warms her heart, soul and home. Adorn her home with an extravagant holiday bouquet by Vera Wang. You'll impress her with this stunning bouquet of red roses, white Asiatic Lilies and rich greens that will complement her beautiful and vintage Christmas decor. The FTD Grand Occasion bouquet by Vera Wang starts at $129.99.

Lavish Dinner

Cook a three-course holiday meal for your family in honor of the matriarch herself. Ask your husband for a favorite family recipe, share one of your own or cook a recipe you've always wanted to try. Delicious holiday fare ideas include pumpkin cornbread stuffing, country sausage and sage, honey mustard and pecan-crusted lamb chops, or pumpkin macaroni and cheese with amoretti crust. For a memorable encore, serve Christmas cookies or red velvet cheesecake in a gorgeous serving tray, such as the Corelle Melamine Service Tray — Pretty Pink, available online at Target for $12.99.

Gift of the Month Clubs

Think about your mother-in-law's personality and favorite indulgences. If she's a culinary expert who loves to cook a savory brunch every Sunday, give her the Bacon of the Month Club or Bacon of the Season Club for $49.95 a month. Give a caffeine addict the Coffee of the Month Club for $24.95 a month with 3 to 12 month options, or if she has a sweet tooth, a Cupcake of the Month Club will deliver 12 gourmet cupcakes each month for $39.95 a month with a 3 to 12 month option. Check out more gourmet gifts at

As you thoughtfully shop for a meaningful gift wrapped and given with love, you can count on a grateful and happy mother-in-law during this holiday season.

About our guest blogger
Patti Campbell is a stay-at-home mom of three from Hawaii who runs a small ecommerce business out of her basement.

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