Happy Halloween!


Happy Halloween!  Here's my crew at work in all our zombie ghoul. I mentioned earlier that our Student Government Fall Festival was last Wednesday, and we went with a Halloween carnival theme. With the exception of Elise, in the blue shirt like me, these are all students involved in my office.

Wear Pink Day

And here we are looking a little more alive, all in our pink for a breast cancer awareness activity we did on campus a few weeks ago.  I hope you and yours have a Happy Halloween whether you're dressed in blood and gore or pink fairy wings and glitter! What are you and/or your little ones dressing up as?

Adjusting to Fall!

Smoky Quartz Earrings

As much as I welcome the cooler Fall weather (though "cooler" is a relative term here in Florida), I'm just not much of a Fall/Winter girl, especially when it comes to color. I suppose if we had the change of seasons and the beautiful Fall color that more northern climates have, I'd enjoy it, but here, it's pretty much green, and then for a spurt, brown when we get a freeze. I'm not complaining, mind you, because I am most definitely a Spring and Summer girl, again especially when it comes to color. And weather for that matter!

When I sit down at my jewelry bench, I'm naturally drawn to pinks, purples, blues, greens...in a word, bright happy colors!..so working in the more muted tones of Fall and Winter, like these smoky quartz earrings I created, is a challenge for me. I have the biggest of my Fall shows coming up in less than two weeks though, the Halifax Arts Festival in Daytona, so get busy I must. Procrastination be darned!

We had our Student Government Association Fall Festival today, so I currently look like a zombie...with purple glasses and blonde curls...well, bloody blonde curls anyway. I'll post some pictures later this week!

Catching My Breath!

Chi Os

Happy Monday! I just wanted to share a little follow up picture to Thursday’s post. Here’s the gang that made it for the weekend, at the Ale House on Friday night. I’m peeking out from the middle of the back row. Great weekend shared with old friends. Some of us stayed out much later than others, but thankfully I was in bed each night by midnight! Between tailgating pre-game and going out to eat and hitting an old haunt after the game, Saturday was a very long day, followed up for me by a photo shoot Sunday morning, so I’m feeling the payback today. I’ll have some shots from Sunday morning’s shoot for you later this week!

Reliving the Good Old Days...


Tomorrow afternoon, I'm heading over to Tallahassee to spend the weekend with some of my college sorority sisters. We started this tradition during football season last year, so many of us reconnecting through Facebook, so this will be our second gathering for a game and some walking down memory lane. It appears I'll be on the older end of the spectrum for those attending this year (we range from 1985 initiates to much much younger....) but I'll be staying with one of the gals from my pledge class. We look so young in this picture, huh!?!? I'm on the far left. I think I was 20 or 21 here and about 30 pounds thinner, and we must have been at a themed fraternity social, given our attire and the drinks in our hands. Can't remember what the dolls were all about!  The two girls in the middle I actually went to high school with as well.  Here's to old friends and good fun! Any fun plans yourself, this weekend?

409 Shots

1964 Ford Thunderbird
1964 Ford Thunderbird
Saturday I had an opportunity to both show my photography at a car show and shoot the show while I was there. For a car geek like myself, particularly classic cars (Barrett-Jackson auction, anyone?), this was heaven. It was fun being there during set up and listening to all the vroom, vrooms all up and down the street. The actual selling part was not very successful because I was off the beaten path—even with my super salesman father manning the booth—but I had a great time shooting the show.

When I got home, unpacked, showered and starting looking through my shots, I saw that I had taken 409 shots (it was a very big show!). Let me paint a little picture for you. See, when I’m shooting cars, I like to get down on their level, eye to eye, or eye to headlight in this case. So since I shot 409 photos, that meant that I squatted 409 times. Are you starting to get the picture here? Imagine doing 409 squats in one day. Oh my goodness, I could barely walk on Sunday. And stairs? No way. And I live in a three-story house! So as I pushed through the pain, walking, um crawling, up and down the stairs numerous times on Sunday doing laundry, Benny got a big kick out of the fact that it took me at least five minutes to navigate just one flight of stairs each time.

Yesterday was not much better, as I looked like a duck every time I had to walk across campus. Today I’m starting to walk a little better, but stairs are still rather painful, particularly coming down. I learned two things from this lesson: first, I guess I need to do more squats on a regular basis, and second, I probably don’t need to do 409 of them in one day. Here’s just one shot from the day. Now I need to get busy editing!

Wishes for the Future

Dandelions Wishes

Remember the dandelion picture below? Well, this is what happened two minutes later. :-) Olivia and I had such a lovely walk through my sister’s neighborhood that day. Sarah had decided to stay back at Kim’s house and play with the baby. As much as I love my girls together, I also love to find time to spend with them alone. We’ve started splitting up reading time in the evenings now. One night Sarah will read with me and Livvie with Benny, and then the next night we’ll switch. Only hard part is I’m missing bits and pieces of both The Fantastic Mr. Fox and James and the Giant Peach now! I want to hear all of both stories!

I came across a film trailer earlier this week that addressed how girls and women are often portrayed in today’s media. Wow. I knew that it was happening, but I just never saw it all put together quite like that. Very moving. I posted it on my sorority alumnae page and commented that we are all so much more than what our outward appearance shows to the world, and we need to teach that daily. I know I try to teach my girls that by encouraging their individuality, the special things each brings to this world, and their own individual awesomeness. Take a look at this video and let me know what you think. There are some troubling images in it, but unfortunately, it paints a very true picture of how the media often portray girls and women today.  The film is called Miss Representation.  It was a reminder for me that my wishes for my girls' future must start in how they view the world today...and how it views them.

Mix it Up Monday: Dandelion Wishes

Dandelion Wishes

We've had a rainy, dreary weekend here in North Florida, with a good old-fashioned, hard-rain packin' nor'easter bearing down on us all weekend. Benny and the girls and I were able to catch up on lots of "inside" projects and just be lazy. We watched The Lion King at least four times since we finally picked up the new DVD and the girls had never seen it before.  Love that movie.

I got some new jewelry made and did some photo editing. This picture is one from my trip up to see my sister in the DC area back in April over Easter weekend. I've titled it Dandelion Wishes. Later this week, I'll show you what Olivia did to this lovely little dandelion. :-)

How was your weekend?

October Free Bling!

October 2011 Free Bling

Time for my monthly Free Bling Friday giveaway! Random.org picked comment number 44 as the winner of my September Free Bling, so congratulations to Kara from New Ipswich, NH!

For October, how about a little fall foliage? This is my "Florida Flurries" photo created as a one inch glass tile pendant. I captured this picture in the 100 Acre Wood (our name for the Theodore Roosevelt National Recreation Area). To be eligible to win, simply visit either of my Etsy shops (here for jewelry and here for photography) and leave a comment in the comment box below with the link to your favorite piece along with a way to reach you and where you’re from by midnight Thursday, November 3. Want more entries? Tweet, blog or Facebook this giveaway and leave another comment with the link. The next winner will be drawn via random.org Friday, November 4.

Don't want to miss a single Free Bling Friday? Click here to sign up for free weekly email updates or subscribe in the reader of your choice over there in the right column. And be sure to join my Facebook Fan page for specials. Thanks for stopping in!  Giveaway open to US and Canadian residents only.

Making Books with the Girlies: Olivia

Olivia's Book-Girls Play Day 4
Olivia's Front Cover
I mentioned in Sarah’s book post below that Livvie definitely likes to blaze her own trails when we’re making art. She’s always liked to do her own thing, but I wonder if in regards to art, this trait might be related to an art project that she was working on a couple of years ago. She questioned herself so much before she realized she really could do her own thing. I wrote about it here.

Olivia's Book-Girls Play Day 2
Olivia's Inside Front cover
Her book is an expression of our family. On the cover, she’s painted herself and her sister; I particularly love the curly hair she’s given Sarah. Inside the front cover are Molly and Isabelle, our dogs; inside the back cover are Tink and Savannah, our cats; and on the back cover are Benny and me. We are all in our own castles.

Olivia's Book-Girls Play Day 1
Olivia's Inside Back Cover
Raising twins is a very fascinating experience. My girls’ personalities and approaches to the world are so very different, yet they’ve been raised with the exact same experiences: same house, same parents, same teachers from day one. As I’ve shared with you here, Sarah’s becoming quite the fashion diva and loves to really stretch her fashion boundaries, yet when she’s making art, she follows very closely the steps that I’m taking. Olivia, on the other hand, is not as adventurous when it comes to getting dressed every morning, yet chooses to go in a completely different direction making art. I love their contradictions!

Olivia's Book-Girls Play Day 3
Olivia's Back Cover