Desk-Top Beaches

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The succulent gardens I made to sell this summer have been such a hit, I thought the kids on vacation might like to make some as mementos of our beach vacation.

I went to our local cigar shop to ask for some boxes which they were happy to supply me with.  While on vacation we collected shells, rocks, driftwood and sand.  I also had succulents from home to include.

Here is what the kids came up with:

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Nothing like bringing home a little bit of vacation :)

Rock On


Have you heard of this? This is sooo cool!!!

So, I’m strolling through a garden in my town and I look down and see this pretty little flower rock.  When I flip the rock over there is a message to go to a Facebook page.  When I get to the page I see all sorts of people hiding and finding rocks throughout my community. People post photos of the rocks they painted and then they go hide them all over town like an Easter egg hunt. The person who finds the rock then goes to the Facebook page and posts a photo of where they found a particular rock.  This way the painter can follow where their rock travels to.

Let’s talk about all the positives.

First, I can’t tell you how excited I was to find a little piece of treasure and I’m a grown-up!  Through this activity you are anticipating making random strangers happy which is a great small lesson in selflessness.  Next, it’s creative and free!  What??? Creative and free?   Who knew you could spend hours at a table chatting with loved ones and decorating with little to no cost?  Brilliant People! Finally, the entire activity is madly addicting.  The painting, the hiding, the finding and the checking in on the local rock page are just too fun to stop!

Now consider this.  I am vacationing on a little island, it’s raining and we have a house full of kids. Yep. You guessed it.  We collected buckets of rocks and got busy!

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By the time the rain stopped, we had amassed 117 painted rocks and seashells.  I don’t know which part they liked better, the painting or the hiding.  We walked all over kingdom-come finding silly places to hide rocks.  My son put one in the bottom of a soda dispenser.  My daughter snuck one into a book at the library.  They rocked the ice cream parlor, window boxes, landmarks, bikes, stores, streets… It took us a good two hours.


It’s been a few days and we are still finding people through Facebook that are still finding our rocks.  Seeing someone smiling in a photo with the rock you painted?  PRICELESS!  I’m telling you, you have to get in on this craze. I’d imagine you can Google “painted rock hiding” in your area.  If you don’t find a community page, you need to create one!  Trust me, it’s a terrific way to spend a day :)

I Had a Vision


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I’m in pretty good shape.  I have my ducks in a row, but dare I say I am exhausted!  That’s why it was nice to escape last night and have a girl’s night out making vision boards.  Vision boards are a way to “visualize” concepts, ideas and inspiration in hopes of drawing focus on aspects one would like to attract more of into their lives.  General categories include family, friends, romance, spirituality, and health and wealth.

For this new year, my focus will be experiencing & savoring happiness and letting go of my own preconceived notion of my role in this world! I’ve spent so many years worrying about being good enough, creative enough & contributing enough. That I think I’m done.  I hope I am.  Will I be mature & wise enough to let go of all of my roles and self-expectations and simply be?  For me it would be a personal paradigm shift.  That is what the Fibonacci spiral in the center of my board represents. Am I as tiny as a perfect nautilus shell or as expansive as the universe?  I think little Mary will stop focusing so much on asking the big questions and concentrate her efforts towards simply being.  Being in a constant state of questioning one’s purpose on this planet, leaves one in a perpetual state of questioning.  It’s time to make a transition from questioning to Being.

Hence the I AM.

Thank you to my beautiful friend that created this night for us.  I usually create a vision board for New Year’s, but it feels very good doing it amongst all the holiday mayhem.  It’s taken my focus off my immediate circumstances and allowed me to see the big picture.

That’s a Good Thing.



Have you ever heard of an Olympicnic?

Well it is very serious business.  Our family has started this ritual.

There may be silly races, water fights, a little corn hole, maybe a keg or two…

but now it just got a little more serious:


Now there are trophies involved!

My family used to have a Festivus party during the holidays as well.  I was given a two foot Santa boot and asked to create a trophy for that occasion. Whoever got the best position in our gift swap was cursed with taking home the boot for the year and having to return it to the next Festivus celebration.  Let’s just say over the years things were written on it, family photos may have been added…there may have even been a little glitter and Jesus, all with the highest respect and admiration I assure you.

Our new tradition is whoever wins the tiki-garden gnome or the hot-mama troll gets to “add to” their splendor for next year.  I even left shelves to fill.  I think the troll needs another entire tier below it.

Let the Olympicnic defacement begin!


I am just warning my family now, my daughter is playing to win.  She wants that tiki-garden gnome to reside in our up-stairs bathroom and she has advised us to do whatever it takes!!!

Bring it family. Bring it – Game on!



Many, many months ago I told you I had an idea…

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But I never told you the idea…


I thought I’d show you the finished project but somehow, as usual, weeks turn into months!

I have this big black box of a fireplace insert.  It’s way too much black for my cheery décor.  So I had the idea to make tiles in my pottery class and attach them to the metal fireplace surround with magnets.  This way if I ever move, I can take them off and spare the next homeowner from what I deemed to be “gorgeous”.  Let’s face it, all humans disagree on that one!  Also, the fact that the fireplace is black becomes a perfect solution for the “appearance” of grout.


Of course I haven’t finished.  I need to make roughly 40 more tiles, but if I waited until that happened, I might very well have forgotten to show you my great idea!

Obviously you could take any tile and create a fun fireplace back splash.  If I were to do it again, instead of one giant magnet in the middle, I’d put 4 tiny magnets in each corner.  This way they wouldn’t spin like my tiles are apt to do.

Oh well, my tiles wiggling and spinning seems perfectly apropos. Everything else in the house always seems to be wiggling and spinning…and cracking…and peeling… you know being a house!

Good luck.  Let’s all keep working at making this world creative! What are you up to?

Normal is So Overrated


Quite sadly, my last bike was stolen right out of my yard while filling our moving van.  It wasn’t the greatest bike, but it was still my bike.

Very kindly, my mother-in-law offered up her old bike.  It’s a gray old Mongoose.  Nothing fancy, yet quite functional.

I’m at the point in my life, where I really don’t want a fancy car (that can be broken into), I don’t want an expensive bike (that can be stolen right out of my yard), nor do I want precious materials throughout my home (that would make me lose sleep and want to buy an alarm system).

I simply want comfy things and well thought-out pieces that I can enjoy every day. And yet, if they were no longer in my life, it wouldn’t  cause me any angst. In fact, it would bring me joy because then I’d have a reason to hunt for a new well worn-out treasure!

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My little girl thought it would be a great idea to take those new duct tapes on the market and decorate what she has termed my ” ugly bike”.

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She just so happens to have a not-so-normal mother who thought this was a flipping splendid idea!

We duct-taped my bike.  It now looks like Pee-Wee Herman’s flower garden and I simply love it.

If it gets worn-out, I’ll pick new tape and if someone tries to steal it, well good luck riding this bike through town.

I think we all shall know who it belongs to!

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Here lie the ghosts of Christmases past.

I had this funny idea to make a wreath out of all those little toys you find on the stairs, under the bed,  and tucked in the car seat. It’s an homage to the bane of every mothers existence, crap toys! 

I have to say, I did have to ask my girlfriend for some of the junk off of her floor because as I began to create this wreath, my children began shrieking in protest! “I need that” “this one is my favorite” “that has sentimental value” –yeah right I say!  It’s the reason us moms have to dispose of this stuff when the kids are not around.  The old motto “out of sight, out of mind” is so true! My kids didn’t even know they had it until they see it again.

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To create the wreath I cut a circle with a hole out of a recycled cardboard box.  I then took six paper bowls and hot-glued them on to the cardboard.

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Now I had a steady base for compiling my toy wreath.

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Again, if you are a parent there is no short supply of toys.  I swear I didn’t even buy these.  How do my kids get them?  How do they multiply?  It’s like magic…or a curse!

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I started with the biggest toys and the stuffies.  They were the first to be glued into the bowls. From there I hot-glued in my favorites, meaning the toys I wanted most visible and then finally I glued in the smallest/filler toys.

Now my kids don’t have to cry because Mommy threw all their toys away.  For one month a year they will be able to revisit them!

Silly huh?

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Here are my Keith Haring gingerbread men.  Sorry they aren’t super creative.  I simply didn’t see the point since two minutes after baking I had already bitten off their heads!  My kids stuck all their left over Halloween candy on their gingerbread men.  Let’s just say after all the chocolate melted, they weren’t exactly photo worthy.  But a Kit-Kat to the head couldn’t have been such a bad way to go!

It’s 11pm and as usual everyone is already tucked in as visions of sugar plums dance through their heads. Visions of sugar plums or running gingerbread men?

Hmm.  Not sure. All I know is I’m ready to join them!

Nighty night!

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I totally asked for it.  Tonight, as we were sitting down to dinner, I asked the kids what they thought I should title my post for today. I asked if they had any good names for my dog I created out of driftwood.

“Dog?” asked my daughter.  “That doesn’t look like a dog. That looks like a fox!” and from there my kids circled the dinner table singing “What Does a Fox Say?”


Does everyone know this video by now?  The kids are going wild for it.  It is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever seen or heard, but just like a car accident, I just can’t help but peak and maybe sing a little!

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So that is it. Even though I designed it to be a chevron dog it is now 100% fox.

Funny how that works.

Moving on…

Last night I posted my Granny Chic winter head wrap. It was too dark to get a photo of it on, so I took one this morning.

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This was wild.  My mother has my self-portrait from day #1 of my creativity challenge.  I didn’t put two and two together, but as I was walking out of her house I saw it and thought to myself “this is totally freaky.”  I inadvertently created the same wreath for my head as I had in my painting over 300 days ago.  I had no intentions.  The wreath in the painting was a floral wreath I wanted to wear to my first holy communion.  My mother, still in shock that I didn’t want to wear the veil like all the other little girls allowed me to wear a crown of baby’s breath.  Totally not what I wanted.  I wanted red roses, mums and sunflowers just like I had seen at a hippy wedding back then.

Hey the heart wants what the heart wants. Now I have my wreath!

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On my car ride home today I created a more tame version of a head wrap.  This prefab was still a little to simple for my taste, so I added some yarn and sequins.

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I also had enough time to make two other large flowers. I was going to add them to my scarf, but then I remembered some of these hats I had at home.  Now I have some overly-bedazzeled  head-gear.

I am ready to take on the cold!

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Welcome to my on the road studio or as some may call it, my lap!

Off to visit family this weekend to ring in the holiday season.  This means if I want to create anything for my 365 challenge, it’s going to be inside a car!


This is a horrible photo taken in the car, sorry about that, but I wanted you to see what I was working on today.  This was a perfectly cute head wrap designed to cover your ears and head to protect them from the cold.

I have a bunch of them.  I love them.  They get the job done.  They keep me warm and they look nice.

Well, if you’ve ever caught my blog, then you know I just can’t leave well enough alone.  This green head wrap was just a tad bit too boring for me…so I had to kick it up twenty notches!


I know, I know. You just don’t know what to say.  You are thinking what the heck happened???  Well for one thing, I was in the car too long, but for another, I just really like crazy bright stuff!

When I was in college someone told me my style was “grandma chic”.  I thought that might be because 90% of my wardrobe was/is thrift store purchases, but they went a little further. They meant it because I’d rock a grandpa cardigan(1960’s) with a 1970’s wide collared shirt, maybe some 80’s corduroys  and wrap it up with a big bow in my hair.  Add the obnoxiously bright colors that I’m attracted to and I can understand where they might not think I’m from this millennium or planet for that matter!

Yeah, I’ll own that.  You can call me Grandma chic!


IMG_8403So today I armed myself with a spool of olive-green thread, a needle, scissors, beads, sequins, ribbon, novelty yarns, vintage trim, and felt. I sewed and sewed and sewed, until there wasn’t any space left!

It reminds me of the vintage floral bathing caps from the 1960’s.  Secretly I always wanted on of those!

I only got a photo of my crazy hat half-way through. I finished tacking everything on later on in the night and it was too dark and too late to get a good photo.  I will have to take a pic and add it to a future post.

I am now a proud owner of a ridiculous bonnet.  I’m pretty sure if I lose it,  people will know who to return it to and I most likely don’t have to worry about anyone wanting to steal it!

Just wait for the car ride home…my scarf is looking a little drab….

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