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22/05

The Impossible Game

Lately things have been a little nuts around here. Ok scratch that, make that the past 3 years things have been a little nuts. I feel like after I had kids, my life went spinning out of control. I am in no ways complaining, I love my kids- and they are what make life fun and wonderful. And also crazy.

Do you ever fill like that? Like your life is crammed with so many good things, and you wonder how on earth you can get it all done. How can I take my daughter to that awesome art class, squeeze in that eye exam for myself, throw dinner in the crock pot since I know things will be crazy later in the day, and call that client who is not happy with that 4th round of logo design? I find myself thinking, someday I will be able to get this all done… when I am all organized; when I get through this list of clients; when my kids get older.. when, when, when.

And this my friends, is called the Impossible game.

I was introduced to this concept a few weeks ago by the amazing Mindy Gledhill (who spoke at last week’s creative collaborative) She said that we often tell ourselves that we need to do it all, and that we can do it all. And this is the impossible game. Because it is IMPOSSIBLE to do EVERYTHING. I cannot now, or ever, do everything I would like to.

So, its all about priorities right? I love to make lists, and lately I have been trying a new technique. I use to make a list of everything I need/want to do, and then trying madly to do it all (and then having a breakdown about how I am overwhelmed/insufficient, etc)

So now, I make a list of everything (I am taking baby steps), and then I pick just 3 things that I will do the next day. It’s all about changing expectations. Most of the time I am finding, I just get these 3 things done- and that is a reason to celebrate! Sometimes I can get a little bit more, but most of the time– I get less done than I want. It is hard work changing your expectations, and what you really can accomplish in a day.

So friends- I have to improve on this. So I designed this poster to put on my desk- to remind me to not play the impossible game. I think this quote sums it up pretty well.. Please print it out and put it wherever will help you to remember to not play that impossible game!

 (note: green border not in download) for personal use only, please do not distribute without permission.

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01/05

All Children Are Artists

One of my favorite things about my childhood is how much my mom fostered in us a love of art. I remember being signed up for lots of different art classes: drawing, painting, papermache, etc… We were constantly doing crafts and learning, and going to museums to look at beautiful paintings and sculptures.

Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that I would later become an artist and designer. I can’t tell you how glad I am that my mom instilled in me this love of art at an early age. (Even though I was too cool for art in high school- but that’s another story)

Now as a mother and an artist, it is especially important to me to encourage my children in the arts. I believe that allowing them to draw, paint, and make messes gives them a creative edge they will need all their life, in whatever field they go into. We are constantly making art and messes over here- whether it be putting food coloring in yogurt and finger painting, making chalk drawings, watercoloring, or making macaroni necklaces- we LOVE getting creative.

A few months ago, my friend Annie announced some art classes in her basement called Bear Cave Studios. I was beyond excited- and we have been going to those regularly, and loving it. (Even though we will be moving in a month here, one of the first things I am going to do is find a mommy and me art class.) Anyways, we have been loving these art classes so much, that I designed the following print to help promote these art classes.

So now- I am giving it to all of you. There are 5 different colors included in the pdf for whatever color suits your little artist best. We have one hanging in my daughter’s room, and it is possibly one of my most favorite sayings- reminding us that there is an artist in all of us!

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14/01

A real Post on Reality

I have been wanting to do this post for awhile now … but yesterday I was completely inspired by my dear friend Yan- who posted about the reality of her situation.

Why don’t we post our reality very often online? On our blogs, facebook and twitter? Now don’t get me wrong, I adore all of the pretty things we can find on pinterest, twitter, facebook and design blogs. Let it be known, I LOVE PRETTY THINGS. I love finding inspiration and getting ideas on how to design, decorate my house, what to cook for dinner, etc.

 

However, I think that sometimes we forget to post about REALITY.

So here is to you- Reality. I think that there is a place for beautiful things, and there is a place for the beauty of reality.

 

Want to know what some of my reality is? Oh let me tell you…

I didn’t shower half of this week, or put on makeup. This is NOT an unusual week. My studiomate Alma can attest to how often I show up to work in my pjs, workout clothes… or looking frazzled.

I gained 20 pounds in one month this pregnancy. Yep. Not even kidding.

I haven’t worked out in 4-5 months. I haven’t had time, or the energy. (and if you know me, you will know that I worked out RELIGIOUSLY before this time.. so this is very strange) In fact, I am not really sure when the last time I worked out was…

I cooked dinner once this week   . . . and it wasn’t organic or pretty looking. And I may or may not have had fast food several times this week. Yum.

I live in small apartment…not a big house. But I adore it! Half of my apartment has nothing on the walls. Nothing. I have empty frames sitting on the floors, with good intentions of starting the decorating process… for THE PAST YEAR.

When I started my business, things were really hard. I didn’t sleep enough because I was always up working and worrying about how my family would survive. I wondered where my next client would come from, how I could keep working so hard and still juggle motherhood, being a good wife, friend, and business woman. I wish I could say that with hard work, these problems went away overnight. But really, sometimes things are still hard. I have learned that businesses grow organically with work, sweat, tears, and belief in yourself, and the support of others. Thankfully after years of hard work, I don’t worry as much about finances. However, I still struggle and worry about juggling motherhood and family responsibilities with my business. It’s hard. But I have learned to be grateful for hard days as well as the good… because they give me perspective, vision, and ultimately make me who I am.

And I have to say I have learned to love the craziness. I love my messy house, my laundry that hasn’t been done this week, the food that is going bad in my fridge, and the long lists of to do that never seem to get done . . .

 

So why am I saying all of this? I want you dear readers- to come here, and expect lovely things. But I hope that these lovely things will only inspire you in your own life. I hope that you will know that behind this is a real person, who is far from organized, on time, and just a little bit crazy.

 

But most of all, I hope that you will believe in yourself, and believe that we are all doing better than we think we are. 

 

So I give you a free download, a little print to print out, put on your fridge, and remind yourself how awesome you are. Embrace the beauty of your own reality- whatever your challenges may be.

 

 

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22/11

Thanksgiving Post: Gratitude

Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday. I love getting together with family, giving thanks, and of course- eating delicious food. This particular season, I am feeling very grateful for so many things. This past week I have witnessed a few things which have made me feel especially humbled by all of the amazing blessings I have in my life.

Some quotes on Gratitude that I love:

“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity…. It turns problems into gifts, failures into success, the unexpected into perfect timing, and mistakes into important events. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.” (Melodie Beattie)


“At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.”

“To educate yourself for the feeling of gratitude means to take nothing for granted, but to always seek out and value the kind that will stand behind the action. Nothing that is done for you is a matter of course. Everything originates in a will for the good, which is directed at you. Train yourself never to put off the word or action for the expression of gratitude.” (Albert Schweitzer)

 

 

Have you stopped to list the things you are grateful for? I always find it amazing how my list can go on and on. So on this week of gratitude I give you a free download. It’s an 8×10 that you can print out, make your own gratitude list, and put it somewhere where you can see it. You will be glad you did!

Happy Thanksgiving!

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03/11

Collaboration: free download & challenge

Now I have been known to talk about this before- but I view collaboration as essential. I believe that as we collaborate with others and work together we can all grow and do better. Think of all of the things we enjoy because people have collaborated: symphonies, music, technology- all of these exist as people share, challenge, and work together. 

 

So how can you collaborate? I bet the odds are good that if you look around- you can find a way you can work with others. If you happen to live in Utah, a few artists and I have started an artist collaboration called creative collaborative. We meet once a month and encourage each other in our endeavors. Tomorrow I will share with you some specific collaborations I have done- and the HUGE benefits which have come to me because of collaboration.

My gift to you: this fall greeting card which you can download, print, use, give as presents… just enjoy! (click button below to download high res pdf card for your personal use)

My challenge for you: If you download the card, I challenge you to think of a something you would like to do with someone- and do it! It can be small- like completing a craft with someone, or writing a note with your siblings and sending it to your parents. Or look around your community and see if there are group meetings or something you can do to encourage group collaboration in your area. I promise you that it will make a difference in your life- just try it!

 

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02/11

What Is It?

The past 6 months have been a whirlwind for me of work and sickness from this pregnancy- I have been so caught up with my busy day to day schedule and my never ending to-do list. In the midst of all of this- I have been asking myself how I could make a bigger impact on my community. Not just my local community, but this wonderful online community. As a result of much thought, brainstorming, and work, I am launching this new project called Create Change.

So what is create change?

Every two weeks I will be picking a new topic. These will range from fun, lighthearted topics, to serious, heavy problems that exist in our society. I will be posting stats, information, quotes, and anything that can inspire and inform- but in a well-designed way. Every week I will have a free download available that is centered around the topic at hand,  and a challenge co-ordinating with that download. These challenges and downloads will hopefully encourage all of us to create change in the world- to be aware of these issues and topics- and to impact all of those we meet in a positive way. Each week I will also be featuring real life stories and experiences from friends, family, and readers.

My hope is that each of us can recognize not only the bad problems in our society and community, but also the good and beautiful that exists in each of us.  I hope that together we can “create change” in ourselves, and in our communities.

So are you ready? Check back tomorrow for the first post on this week’s topic: collaboration!