taking a small break...

so it's finally friday...... what a week!!!

I hung all my paintings yesterday in The Wine Gallery... here's a picture of one of them...
The light didn't mesh well with my camera on my phone but you get the idea... this one I made especially for the wine gallery and the purples in the painting go so nicely with the wall!

The weather in Oklahoma City was perfect yesterday...

I took this picture from my phone when I was driving home... this is the field behind my house. It's so nice to be seperated from a busy road but the land is for sale.... and it's commercial property so I'm not looking forward to the construction and buildings that will be happening here in the future.

This is going to be my last post until next week... Miranda is on her way while I type and there's tons of fun to be had this weekend! But don't worry I will take plenty of pictures and post them on Tuesday :) I will catch up on all your blogs after my little mini-computer-vacation! I've been reading them all from my phone, I'm just not able to comment!

I hope you all have a positively wonderful weekend!!


thank you thursday

I want to start by saying thank you to all of you for your kind words and encouragement regarding my first attempt at live painting yesterday! I really appreciate it and it means a lot to me!

I was in a bit of a panic all day but it all went smoothly... my paintings are hung in The Wine Gallery and I painted while talking to quite a few people last night. It was a little bit awkward standing while painting, but the people were all very nice and interested in what I was doing and it really helped that Amber, Amber & her mom, Angie, Cindi & her cousin, and Diana all showed up! Thank you girls! Just having you there made me feel more comfortable and confident!

So here's the painting I worked on...
I added some detail to the tree and painted the birds last night... still have a ways to go, but hopefully I can finish it today or tomorrow and get it displayed!

Now for a few more things I'm thankful for this week:
  • Thank you to the great people of Oklahoma for voting for Sally Kern. Apparently Sally believes that women don't make as much a men do 'because they all tend to spend more time at home with their families' and that 'minorities earn less than white people because they don't work as hard and have less initiative'. Her and other members of the Oklahoma House of Representatives approved a proposed constitutional amendment to eliminate affirmative action in state government yesterday. She's also been in the news for years preaching about the sins of homosexuality. WTF were you thinking when you voted for this lady OK?!
  • I'd also like to thank Governor Mary Fallin for signing 2 anti-abortion bills on her 100th day of being Governor. Thank you for taking away a woman's right to choose. I'd also like to politely note that I did NOT vote for her.
On a more serious, less sarcastic note...
I'm very thankful....
  • for painting and the beautiful release it gives me. 
  • for the lovely beautiful people who appreciate my paintings and all the hours I put into it.
  • that the sun is outside my window shining after many days of wind and rain.
  • that I start my new job on Monday! I don't miss the heels but I miss the bi-weekly paychecks!
  • that Miranda will be here tomorrow!
  • for dark chocolate almond milk. mmmmmm.
  • for the nice people at Applebee's who made a Paradise Chicken Salad -minus the chicken- for me last night! oh, and a side of red potatoes and a skinny margarita!
  • for my grade in math... I thought for sure that I bombed my last test, and I found out on Tuesday that I actually got a 92%! Which makes my overall grade in Business Math 98.89%... only one more test to go :)
That's all for today... I still need to finish hanging my paintings and my math homework this morning... busy busy busy! Hope you all have a wonderful day and thanks again for all the positive energy regarding my painting last night!!


today is the day

I'm painting in front of people for the first time today... deep breaths.

I think I'm prepared... but being self taught and anxiety prone, I don't feel prepared.

I bought an easel at Michael's yesterday... not the fancy schmancy one I wanted of course (because it was $200) but the little tiny cheap one that cost me $7 (after using a 50% off coupon). I don't paint on an easel. Ever. I paint for such long periods of time that I don't want to stand. Plus I like to turn the canvas all different way while I'm paining and hold it at certain angles to get the right line or texture. So tonight should be interesting, to say the least. I may request a constant flow of wine to keep sooth, or shall I say, drown, my nerves.

So last night I went to the Oklahoma City Festival of the Arts.

It's my favorite event in OKC and I patiently wait all year for it. It takes place at a lovely place downtown called the Myriad Gardens and has tons of art, food and music. My kind of place. We only stayed for about 3 hours last night and I wasn't able to see all the art... we did take some time to have vegetarian indian tacos and wrapped the night up with a suicide chocolate sundae....

the gardens have been under renovation for a year now and this is what they've done so far. I have mixed feelings. I had a lot of great memories of the old gardens and loved how it was hilly and full of trees and hidden walking paths... it made me forget I was downtown. Now they've taken down all the trees and shaped up the pond so it has cement around it... what kind of pond is surrounded by cement?!?! and now that the trees are gone, you have a clear view of the big tall buildings... not very garden like. But it's all fancy and modern now... it is what it is, I guess.
I'm going to include some before pictures and then the pictures from last night....
the old northwest view

love the turtles! and I didn't see any last night!

southeast view

south view

and here's the after......

northwest view

west side view of the gardens (it used to be a full of trees and turtles)

one of the stages

I love the water that runs alongside the walkways! (it's new)

crystal gardens (eastside facing west)

my favorite part... lots and lots of art

Ok well I'm off to do some last minute preparing... I'll take some pictures tonight to share with you all tomorrow and I'll let you know how it goes (if I survive!)... hope you all have a wonderful day filled with sunshine (if so send it my way... it's been raining all morning!)


paintings, business cards, and birthdays

It's finally finished!!!

30 x 40 x 1.5
Well kind of... I still want to go over the words with another layer to make them a little thicker and darker. But you get the idea. This is from my most favorite book Eat, Pray, Love and it says 'the sun that moves the sun and the other stars', it just looks prettier :)

I also ordered my new business cards....

Aren't they pretty?!?! My little sister did a wonderful job :) I can't wait to get them!

And Happy Happy Birthday to my lovely friend Courtney, who started calling me Sarafina which lead to my shop name! Love you, miss you and can't wait to see you in November!!!

Super short today... sorry! I'm trying to get a whole lot done and I'm running out of time!


monday morning inspiration

As I've taken the first few steps into displaying my work in public, I've learned a whole lot. I didn't realize how much work goes into it and I'm feeling exhausted. There's so many little details and touch ups here and there... my clothes have speckles of paint, in my house lingers the faint stench of uv protective spray, and my mind is on overdrive. My index finger is a little stiff from my obsession with getting perfect pictures and my wallet feels lighter but I have pretty new business cards on the way.

I've decided it would be nice to put together a portfolio of my past work to have with me at the wine tasting this Wednesday. I decided this yesterday and with volunteering today and trying to finish homework and 2 more paintings, I haven't really left myself much time to put it together... but here are a few of pictures of my work old and new (I don't have pictures of a lot of my earlier work so this starts last year)... I'll start with the oldest and move towards the newest and hopefully my journey on canvas inspires you on this monday morning.
this one hangs in a newlyweds house in WI (and its my all time favorite!!!)
My first Etsy sale! This painting lives in Brooklyn!

This painting hangs in my friend Shasta's house

this is still isn't finished and is in my spare room

this one is hanging in my dining room
this painting (along with the one below) now live in Austin, TX
they were my 2nd and 3rd Etsy sales
inspired by Diana, this one is going to The Wine Gallery

This one hangs in my hall, i still love Edward Cullen

This one also hangs in the hall but is soon going to The Wine Gallery

Another Wine Gallery piece

this one, too
and this one...
this is my 4th Etsy sale and now lives in CT with Melinda

this one was created specifically for the Wine Gallery
That's all lovely beautiful blog friends... I hope you've enjoyed the pictures and make the most of the start of this new week... now I'm off because I'm late!!!


sunday morning music

The only thing that can possibly be better than a sunday morning, is a rainy sunday morning. I've been patiently waiting for rain for weeks and putting up with inaccurate weather forecasts, who have been promising rain all week. So when I woke up this morning to a small rumble in the sky and heard the pitter patter of rain drops, I was elated.

So Friday night I went out with my friends... you know you had a good time when at the end of the night your jaw hurts from laughing so much! Amber took all the pics on her pretty camera so this is the only one I got...

Then yesterday I took a day off from my computer because I was feeling overwhelmed... I actually laid on the couch and watched tv in the morning (which I rarely do) and then I had a workshop in the afternoon where I learned how to take pictures of my paintings... or should I say, I learned how expensive all the equipment is that I need to take good pictures of my paintings.

Each week just keeps getting busier and busier as the end of the semester approaches. Now I have final projects to be working on and I have the wine tasting this wednesday where I get to paint in front of people. I've been trying not to think about it because it gives me anxiety.

Today instead of poems I'm going to give you a few of my newly discovered favorite songs, because lyrics are basically poetry and I'm in more of music than writing mood this morning....


every day is earth day

Humankind has not woven the web of life.  We are but one thread within it.  Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves.  All things are bound together.  All things connect.  
~Chief Seattle, 1855

 Happy Earth Day! Although I strongly believe everyone should treat every day like Earth Day, it does make me happy to hear and read about all the celebrations going on today. I personally am doing my part next Saturday. I've volunteered for 'Plant the Plaza' and my friend Miranda (who will be visiting from WI) is going with me... We're going to be making the Plaza District pretty and digging in the dirt, which growing up in the country was one of my favorite things to do! Nothing like a huge garden with rich dark soil and a water hose to keep me occupied when I was little! Lora of LoLoMakes is coordinating Plant the Plaza and has a fun etsy shop with some great gardening items... you should check it out! 

Over the years I've definitely taken great strides in being 'green'. I've collected a whole drawer of totes and I politely decline plastic bags if my purchase can be carried or put in my purse. I've switched to natural cleaners without all those horrible chemicals. I recycle all the aluminum, plastic, glass, and paper we use and I've been trying to be more package conscious. We switched to the cfl bulbs years ago and I turn off the water while I'm brushing my teeth and washing my face. Nothing major but throughout time I've added new eco-friendly habits to my daily life. 

My next project is I want to start composting. I've been reading about how to make your own and I think that may be my project on Sunday. I already give my rose bushes my coffee grounds and banana peels, which I'm pretty sure they greatly appreciate.

Ok, off to finish my paper. Once and for all.. I'm sooo close to being done and I have a fun girls night planned with my friends and Angela, who is in town for the weekend from Denver, so I really need to finish it by this afternoon. I hope you all have a happy earth day and a wonderful weekend!!

You forget that the fruits belong to all and that the land belongs to no one.  ~Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Discours sur l'origine et les fondements de l'inégalité parmi les hommes, 1755


thank you thursday

Oh so much to be thankful for this week...

I'm thankful for....
  • music (specifically Ours by the Bravery because I'm obsessed... I'm listening to it right now)
  • kale (my new favorite snack)
  • the hr dept at school for hiring me as an assistant!
  • Miranda for making the trip to see me next week :)
  • living though all the stupid crap I did as a teenager (ok, ok... and as a twenty something) it really is amazing that I am alive to write this today.
  • Melinda, for writing the sweetest note after receiving my painting 
  • kleenex, for being there for  me after reading the note Melinda sent me
  • paint, if not for liquid colors to put on something I would be lost
  • animals. I'm so thankful I haven't eaten them in over a month!
  • the opportunity to paint in front of people on the 27th. even though I'm extremely nervous.
  • poetry.

Hearthside by Dorothy Parker
  Half across the world from me
Lie the lands I'll never see-
I, whose longing lives and dies
Where a ship has sailed away;
I, that never close my eyes
But to look upon Cathay.

Things I may not know nor tell
Wait, where older waters swell;
Ways that flowered at Sappho's tread,
Winds that sighed in Homer's strings,
Vibrant with the singing dead,
Golden with the dust of wings.

Under deeper skies than mine,
Quiet valleys dip and shine.
Where their tender grasses heal
Ancient scars of trench and tomb
I shall never walk: nor kneel
Where the bones of poets bloom.

If I seek a lovelier part,
Where I travel goes my heart;
Where I stray my thought must go;
With me wanders my desire.
Best to sit and watch the snow,
Turn the lock, and poke the fire.



It's already Wednesday... where has my week gone?! This is one of those weeks where I wish there were more hours in the day, and I'm sure the next 3 weeks will be the same. Then the semester will be over... sigh. Just in time for summer semester to begin... luckily I'm only taking 2 classes this summer.

Anway, all I have left to do this week is write the paper. Have I started? Nope. What am I doing instead? Reading and writing blogs. Hey, it's writing, so it kind of counts, right?

I just don't want to write about multiculturalism. The more I read about it, the more bored I get. There's so much controversy surrounding it, and I'm having trouble finding facts, everything is one sided and based on opinions. I just really don't care enough to write about it and I'm struggling.

So here I am...

Since moving into our house almost 2 years ago I've been slowly but surely planting and landscaping, although that's mostly my bfs forte. I have contributed a little though... here's proof!

These are some bulbs that I planted last spring. I fell in love with the long stalks of green and was shocked when this spring they've bloomed!
 Here's a close up of the pretty purple flowers! (and the still kind of brown lawn... it hasn't rained here in weeks! It's sooo dry.)

This is the ivy that I planted last spring. I bought it from the evil empire known as Walmart, and it was only $.50. It was only one vine about 3 inches long and so pathetic looking, I bought it because I felt bad for it... a little coffee grounds, banana peels, and lots of water later... it's flourishing and I'm pleased :)

One side of our flower bed is reserved for strawberries and blackberries. I planted 3 strawberry plants last summer and they've multiplied! We already have picked a few ripe strawberries but mostly they get eaten by animals. There are sooo many I don't mind sharing :)

The next two pictures I can't take credit for but I wanted to share anyway because I think they're so pretty. This is some type of rose bush (I think... it has thorns?) that is right outside our front door and I love the pink and white flowers!

Okay, now to share a painting I have previously blogged about but just finally finished last night....
Originally I was going to leave the bottom gray space open for customization and let whoever bought it choose the words, but since I want to display it in The Wine Gallery, I've decided to just go ahead and finish it. I choose this line from the song Aquarius by The Fifth Dimension. I loooove this song and it always makes me happy.

So now I have 5 of the 7 paintings done. Time is ticking so I need to get to painting! and writing (my english paper, not blog! :) ) so here's the poem of the day....



photo-happy tuesday!

Good morning :) Today seems like a beautiful day...
but then I realized that today is the anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing that happened in 1995. I didn't live here then (I was in 8th grade in WI) but I've been to the memorial and it's hauntingly beautiful. My heart goes out to all those who lost loved ones that day and who's lives were forever changed. I remember hearing about it on the news, but it didn't really sink in until I did the Memorial 5k last year and saw all the people walking and running, wearing buttons, hats and shirts with pictures of the people, the children, they were running in memory of. It's impossible not to get emotional. For those of you who haven't been, here are some pictures....
west side view

sw side view

Amber & I after the Memorial 5k in 2010

east side view

north side view

nw side view

I'm still a tab bit sleepy and I have a slight crink in my neck from sitting at the table all day and night long yesterday doing homework. But I did get a lot accomplished. When my eyes finally went cross with formulas and multiculturalism controversies, I decided to unwind the best way I know how... painting.

Here's a peak at a few canvases I've been working on....

This one has been a work-in-progress for some time now... I was kind of stuck and waiting for an idea to come to me and I did last night. I still need to make the letters a little more bold and give Robert Louis Stevenson a little credit for saying this but overall, I'm pleased. I freehanded the words so they took me a few hours, but I felt like they complimented the wine/poetry idea.
30" x 40" x 1.5"
The next is a little something I've been working on for a girl that I used to work with in Wisconsin. She wanted a painting that coordinated with the  Hayley Bedding she was getting her daughter from Pottery Barn. It still needs a few minor tweaks and lines here and there but for the most part, it's close to done. The little girls name is Maryn so I also painted a wooden M that she can hang in her room that matches.

This one I just started this weekend and it's no where near close to being done... It needs another layer of red and then I need to figure out if I want to do just yelow circles or incorporate some orange in there, too. I'm painting this with the inspiration I received from reading my all time favorite book... Eat, Pray, Love.
One of my favorite lines is: "L'amor che move il sole e l'altre stelle. (The love that moves the sun and the other stars.)" and that is what I'm painting on this, which is why I left lots of room for the words. I don't think I'm going to put the english translation on it, but I want to write it big in a twirly flowy pretty kind of script font.

Lst but not least, I thought I would share this... because it's probably the strangest gift I've ever received, though oddly I think it kind of fits me in a weird way. And I love it because it's unlike anything I've ever laid my eyes upon.
Saturday, my bf's mom knocked on the door and when I answered it, she said she had bought something for me but her husband was carrying it over because it was too heavy for her to carry. This immediately piqued my interest.
Then he walked through the door with this......

The lighting in my living room isn't great, but I'm sure you can tell it's some kind of bear (I think) and a long oblong piece of glass sits on top of it. I have no clue where to put it, our house isn't tiny but there's just not a good place to put it, so for now it's in a corner of our living room. It  makes me chuckle every time I look at it.
Isn't it weird the things people see that make them think of you?!

Another busy day, I need to study a bit more before class and I take my exam this afternoon... my anxiety is always worse than the exam itself. So I hope all you lovely beautiful people have a wonderful sunshine filled Tuesday... it's poem time!
Since I already talked about Elizabeth Gilbert and I love her, I'm going to share two poems by her :)

From Elizabeth Gilbert, Two Poems from an Ashram in India

From Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
All this talk of nectar and bliss
is starting to piss me off
I don't know about you, my friend,
but my path to God ain't no sweet waft of incense.
It's a cat set loose in a pigeon pen
and I'm the cat - but also them who yell like hell when they get pinned.
My path to God is a worker's uprising
won't be peace till they unionize
Their picket is so fearsome
the National Guard wont' go near them.
My path was beaten unconscious before me,
by a small brown man I never got to see,
who chased God through India,
shin-deep in mud, barefoot and famined, malarial blood,
sleeping in doorways, under bridges - a hobo.
(which is short for "homeward bound," you know)
And he now chases me, saying, "Got it yet, Liz?"
What Homeward means?  What BOUND really is?

If they'd let me wear pants made out of the fresh-mown grass from this place,
I'd do it.
If they'd let me make out
with every single Eucalyptus tree in Ganesh's Grove,
I swear, I'd do it.
I've sweated out dew these days,
worked out the dregs,
rubbed my chin on tree bark,
mistaking it for my master's leg.
I can't get far enough in.
If they'd let me eat the soil of this place
sewed on a bed of bird's nests
I'd finish only half my plate,
Then sleep all night on the rest.