Friday, December 31, 2010

Free Cards & FREE GIFT Friday ~ The Artist's Way

Hello fellow mama artists ~ today, instead of just offering Free Cards for Free Cards Friday, I am also gifting a copy of The Artist's Way book and a hard bound Morning Pages Journal.

If I can help one of my favorite supporters and friends start 2011 with some fresh purpose and inspiration, I am ON IT!

One commenter will get BOTH gifts. NOTE ~ when you comment, let me know WHO this gift will be for and a tiny bit about how you think it might inspire you/them.

Julia Cameron says:
"Most of us have no idea of our real creative height. We are much more gifted than we know. My tools help to nurture those gifts."
The Artist's Way has sold more than two million copies worldwide, and Julia Cameron's followup bestsellers The Vein of Gold, Walking in this World and The Right to Write are likewise flagship books which are taught in universities, churches, human potential centers and even in tiny clusters deep in the jungles of Panama.

above information © and borrowed from Julia Cameron's website.

It's Free Cards Friday! Add your comment to this blog post telling me WHO this gift will be for and a tiny bit of how you think it will inspire you/them (here at the blog or on the Facebook page) throughout the weekend and be in the running to win these two insightful books plus some cards ~ I'll choose the winner on Monday (unless there are less than 5 entries, I may wait til next week).

Wishing you a safe and happy New Years Eve & Day,
Love & Sincerely ~ Katie

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Power of Scent ~ Living Simply in Sweden

In February 2010 I spent 10 days in Sweden (near Stockholm) ~ in a small and simple apartment with my mama. We were a few blocks from my brother’s home with his wife and new baby. My mom and I spent each night and morning in our little studio apartment, with its tiny kitchen sink and hot plate ~ its tiny bathroom, bunk beds and fold-out couch. The front (and only) door opened into the middle of the room and it was decorated sparsely and simply.

I had a backpack, a bottom bunk, a spoon, a bowl, a pan, a towel or two, and my things: a book (the Simple Living Guide by Janet Luhrs), a sketchbook and notebook, my flip video camera (see a Sweden market video), my thermal underwear and a few outfits, my hair scarf, a package of Bob’s Red Mill 10-grain cereal, tea, honey, bags of nuts and my water bottle. Also my Alaffia face wash and lotion, and of course a toothbrush and paste as well as a coat, hat, boots and gloves.

Each morning I woke when the sun said so, into deep peace, and took time to sit and breathe. I cooked my pan of cereal on the hot plate and after eating washed my bowl and spoon. We took turns in the shower and bathroom. My getting-ready routine has always been so minimal that while my mom got ready (and before she woke) I had plenty of time to sit and read at the tiny table, as well as write. At some point we headed out of our warm well-lit studio, up through the snow (2 feet) to see my brother and wife and their tiny boy in an almost equally simple and very peaceful apartment. The air was fresh and cold, the sun was bright, we were so happy.

These ten days were eye-opening to me. I was already striving for a simpler life, however in a home with a husband and two children it is hard to live with minimal possessions and maximum amounts of time to just be. This trip gave me an exceptional opportunity to live the way I have always wanted.

Each evening during the visit to Sweden, I washed my face and applied my lotion ~ Alaffia Skin Renewal ~ it seemed so everyday to me at the time. Upon my return, I ran out of that lotion and decided to try an alternative type within the Alaffia label.

Last week, I purchased the initial lotion again and was so surprised upon my first use of it after my shower. As the scent (which is a bit strange, but pleasant) reached my nose, I was instantly transported back to our simple little apartment in Sweden. It was amazing ~ the power of a scent. It brought back detailed images and memories ~ standing in the tiny bathroom, sitting at the little table reading, sitting in silence, walking through deep snow. The happiness and peace of those days easily came back to me ~ I loved it.

I look back very fondly on this trip ~ and look very forward to the time within the next year or two, when I can take my little family of four to experience that same beauty and peace. It may take some time to get there again, but in all seriousness, each night when I get ready for bed, I receive a remembrance gift of peace and simplicity in the simple use of that lotion.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Joy & Peace ~ video process part 2 ~ Free Cards Winner

The Free Cards Winner for last week is Amy! Let's do it again this Friday.

Have a great week everyone ~ it's back to painting for me,

Love & Sincerely, Katie

Friday, December 10, 2010

Time, Intimacy, Simple Living ~ Free Cards Friday

I place here, for you to ponder, a paragraph from a book that has become a life manual for me over the last year. A most-wonderful book that has been opening my mind page by page (I just started at the beginning again this week) in regard to... Everything that is important to me.

Every time I read this particular paragraph I am stunned by its accuracy, its obviousness, yet the clear truth that so many just don’t understand it. I am not saying that I have things figured out ~ but I am saying that this paragraph (just one inspirational paragraph in a book riddled with inspiration and insight) seems, to me, capable of unraveling so many inter- and intrapersonal issues that we may face.
Read This:

Our Intimacy Famine. From The Simple Living Guide by Janet Luhrs

“Our time famine is really an intimacy famine. It is much easier to stay busy and frantic than it is to love and know ourselves and others deeply. We’re busy because we want to be busy. Staying busy appears to give our lives meaning (just look at all of the things I have accomplished and all of the things I do in my life!), and staying busy is safe. We don’t need to really get in and look at our lives when we’re rushing from one thing to the next.”

“A speeded-up life not only robs us of time to connect with others, but it also makes us impatient and angry. We don’t have time to listen to our partner’s point of view. We don’t have time to wait for a bank teller who is just learning. We don’t have time for our children. We don’t have time for ourselves. When we’re overscheduled, we become selfish, because our whole day is spent trying to catch up and our night is spent trying to recuperate...”
Now, Seriously ~ Read It Again.

And a final thought about Simple Living ~ Simple Living is not about living in a white-walled house with few items and trying not to spend money ~ Simple Living is about making choices about how we spend our time and our money, how we spend our days and being conscious of the moments as they happen. Simply choosing fewer/more intimate interactions, versus more/less intimate interactions. Simply not getting caught up in buying~doing~going~having~impressing.

I want to do simple intimate activities with my children this season ~ and as soon as school gets out (after next week) I am itching to go pick up my grandma at her house and do something special with her and my boys. Time spent talking and listening with my two grandmothers (my boys and I are so blessed that they have two great-grandmothers) in a slow and intimate, rambling way is one of my favorite things.

What do you like to do with your loved ones this season (and/or all year long) that nourishes your connections and feeds your soul?

It's Free Cards Friday! Add your comment to this blog post (here at the blog or on the Facebook page) throughout the weekend and be in the running to win some cards ~ I'll choose the winner on Monday.

Love & Sincerely ~ Katie

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Joy & Peace ~ Painting Process ~part one~

More coming soon as I work further on this painting. In the meantime, it is back to romancing the commissioned paintings!

Have a great night,

Love & Sincerely, Katie

One Year Ago While Painting Motherhood ~ Free Cards Winner

Feeling Adequate As a mother and business owner, I find the demands can be overwhelming and often wonder just how much I am “supposed” to accomplish in one day – in order to make myself feel that I’ve done enough. read more

Interior Landscapes Today as I was clearing out the Christmas clutter and chaos, I was reminded of another direction my work has travelled - a second direction that inspires me and lights me up in a new way - and as I vacuumed up the last tree needle I decided to show you these pieces. read more

Stay tuned for Part One of the Painting Process for a brand new painting ~ Joy & Peace (hopefully) coming tomorrow!

The Free Cards Winner for last week is Rose!

Love & Sincerely ~ Katie

Friday, December 3, 2010

Crafty Mamas Holiday Bazaar at Milagros Boutique in Portland, OR ~ Free Cards Friday

I am honored to be a part of this upcoming event in Portland, OR ~ I hope to see you there!

The Crafty Mamas Holiday Bazaar
is Saturday, December 4 from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. at Milagros!

The Crafty Mamas Holiday Bazaar will feature a wide variety of locally made goods by a craft vendors! Clothes, jewelry, toys and more. There will also complimentary refreshments, art activities for the kids and more.

Admission to the event is free and families are very welcome!

In addition to being a fun community event, the Holiday Bazaar is a fundraiser for Mercy Corps. Mercy Corps works to alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression throughout the world by helping people build secure, productive and just communities. Milagros and all the vendors at the Holiday Bazaar will be donating 10 percent of their sales to support Mercy Corps.

It's Free Cards Friday! Add your comment to this blog post (here at the blog or on the Facebook page) throughout the weekend and be in the running to win some cards ~ I'll choose the winner on Monday.