Listen to Your Heart


I just finished putting this girl together after three days of working on her in-between work and life responsibilities (grrrr...!). This project was so dang fun. I loved working with fabric, book papers, mod podge, gesso, paint, pens, oil pastels and using my sewing machine...all on one project. 

I was following along in a class created by Christy Tomlinson and didn't have all of the supplies that she used on hand, but didn't let that stop me from working my own magic. 

I loved thinking about what word I would choose for my heart's intention as I worked on the girl too. Love, love, love!!

I'm so happy with how she turned out. Maybe on my next one I'll be brave and put a face on her! 


52Questions | Week 5


This weekend was a bit busier than usual for me so I'm posting last week's art journaling a day later than usual. Here was the prompt:

and here is my art journaling. 

I actually did my journaling late last night and was pretty exhausted but I had been thinking about what it was that I wanted to say so was able to kick it out pretty quickly. This morning however I've already thought of more things that I want to, I forgot to put learning how to play the banjo on my list! 

My journaling includes things like how I want to learn how to play the fiddle (or violin), the harmonica, the piano (beyond what I learned to play in school), how to better identify the rocks in my rock collection and gemstones (from my dad's collection), how to quilt (like my grandma), how to identify trees, mushrooms, and bird calls with confidence. How to exercise and stick with it! I also included things like how I want to learn how to ask for help (something I'm not very good at), how I need to learn to not always prepare for the worst-case-scenario (my need to not fail or be prepared emotionally for things when they don't turn out), how I want to be better at acknowledging that the things that I most admire in others are also within myself as well. I need to learn to say no to others sometimes so that I can take care of myself. I need to learn to not be a "someday" is happening right now. I want to get better at believing that there is so much goodness that is meant for me! It's so easy to listen to that little voice, that when things get hard, whispers "That is simply not meant for you."  

I journaled in my songbook that is serving as my art journal with black sharpie and then sewed some sheets of vellum paper and placed them over the top. added some typed phrases and a butterfly that I had in my scrapbook stash and called it done. 

This week's prompt is:

If you are following along and wish to have access to our private Facebook group please comment or email me at livelifecreateart[AT]gmail[DOT]com and I'll send you the link! 


52Questions | Week 4



Wow, I can't believe it's been a month already of prompts! I'm slightly proud of myself for creating something every week so far haha! I'm finding that the schedule of posting the prompt on Sundays really works for me - I have the entire week then to think about what I have to say about the prompt and then what it is that I want to create for it. So far I've been doing my writing and creating either late Saturday night or early Sunday mornings. It's proving to be the perfect way to wind down a bit from my work week and settle my heart a bit for what's ahead. 

This week's prompt was strength:

I love how every prompt can be interpreted in so very many different ways. Strength will look and mean something entirely different depending on the person, what they're going through, their mood, the day, etc. I chose to write about how sometimes strength looks quiet and small. How sometimes I've looked outside of myself, to others, or to the world to tell me what it is that I should do based on if it was the "strong" thing to do when in reality true strength can be in those actions that are the most true to our hearts and not loud or showy or masquerading as "brave". 

There was an instance in my life where I was faced with a difficult decision and I looked to my dad for words of advice and guidance. He made the comment to me that I would have to be a really strong person to choose one particular choice, and at the time and in my vulnerable state, I took what he was saying to mean that that is the thing I should choose because "being strong" is what it was that I was supposed to be. This being based on my own meaning of what "strong" meant at the time...and unfortunately, how I had chosen to navigate my life at that point in time. Now, so many years later I think I got his message wrong. He wasn't saying "strong" was the way or even particularly "good"...he was truly saying that it may be a very difficult path to maneuver. Strength today means a sort of vulnerability. It means truth. It means kindness to myself and to others. I've kept my journaling private for this week's prompt but you get the idea of what it is that I'm thinking and feeling based on what I've shared here I think. 

I knew that I wanted to create something small for this week's entry and I thought a little book would be neat. I found a tutorial online for this adorable DIY Miniature Book and followed that to create my own. 

I really love how this ended up...kind of obsessed with looking at it and holding it haha! My librarian mind is actually thinking of turning this into a program, so many things we could do with this! Harry Potter spell books, a book of motivational quotes for teens, love poems for valentine's day, a book of miniature photos of friends...hmmm.

I glued real pressed ferns to the front and back inside of my book because they are so delicate, I thought that worked with what I was trying to communicate about strength being something small, quiet, and almost fragile at times. 

It probably doesn't look like it but my book as fourteen pages of text! So I was actually able to get quite a bit of journaling in there. My font size was 8. 

Next week's prompt is:

52Questions | Week 3



Sharing this week's prompt from my 52Q group and the project/journal entry that I created to go along with it! 

Here's the prompt:

and then here's what I created for it:

Something kind of funny, I've noticed that each week my project gets bigger and bigger haha! I decided early on that I wasn't going to commit myself to using any one size or medium and I think it will actually be fun to see all of my projects together at the end of the year. Perhaps I'll create a fabric pocket to attach to the front of my art journal that will hold all the smaller cards/pages, etc.? Not sure yet. 

My art journal pictured here is actually an old book that was given to me by a friend a few years ago now. It's the Fireside Book of Favorite Songs selected and edited by Margaret Bradford Boni and arranged for piano by Norman Lloyd. I love it! It's got old illustrations coupled with sheet music. For this entry though I put gesso over the pages, you can see some of the music notes through the gesso here and there in real life, not so much in the photos. 

I'm so thankful for this group and weekly practice! So far it's felt so good to intentionally carve out a bit of time to be creative and reflect in this way. 

52Questions | Week 2



This week's prompt made me think about what pieces of clothing have been my favorites over the years and what made them favorites. I've found that all of my favorite pieces of clothing have actually been thrifted items that I've come across along the way from resale shops or things that have belonged to other people. Nothing is anything that's fancy or expensive. 

Lately, my favorite piece of clothing is a navy blue and red ringer style tank top that I got several years back at a thrift store while in a town I was just passing through. It's the absolute perfect weight and super soft. What makes it a favorite though is probably the fact that since it's so comfy, I grab it to wear during most of my most fun and memorable outdoor adventures. I've worn it during several mushroom forays, numerous hikes, on treks searching for waterfalls (pictured below - hence the reason my face is so red from all the exertion required, ha!!), and it's my "official" work shirt for messier chores that are done around the house. It's almost on it's last legs, there are two fabric runs along one side now, there are faint aqua blue paint flecks around the chest from when I painted the ceiling of Zoey's clubhouse, and the fabric is worn so thin now that if I wear the shirt in public I now have to be aware of what color bra I'm wearing underneath. I recently discovered too that there is a spot where the red trim is pulling away from the blue fabric under one arm so you could say perhaps that this prompt inspired a bit of an ode of sorts to my favorite adventure tank. 

A few other honorable mentions include a pair of stove pipe light wash jeans, a light honey colored pair of calf high boots with a wood stacked heel and a v-neck men's white tee (all thrift shop finds from my UW-Platteville days) - man that was a good outfit. I have a memory of walking in a grocery store with my college roommate and best friend (Cherity) on a Saturday night before going out on the town and feeling pretty dang good wearing that outfit, haha! Another favorite is a red Miller High Life tee that belonged to my best friend's (again, Cherity) boyfriend which I borrowed when we were all camping together and for whatever reason, I somehow kept. I cannot stand that beer but that tee-shirt was so soft and worn-in just the perfect amount. I wore that until it was sheer in parts! Another item that I have and love simply for sentimental reasons is my dad's dress coat with tails that he wore to art shows. It's decorated with some crazy designs (it was altered by another artist, my dad bought it at an art show). My dad called it his "spirit coat". 

(Back of this week's art journal card...)

I've got two pieces of jewelry that are meaningful favorites, both from my parents...a tiny pair of dime store silver-plated elephant earrings were given to me after I went to the circus in Wabasha with my mom and dad and ended up with a crush on the boy tending to the elephants. Everyone was so excited about everything happening in the tents and I was fascinated with what was going on outside of the circus grounds behind a chain link fence. My dad being my dad, mortified me (my pre-teen/teen self) and walked on over and introduced himself (and then me!) to the long, dark-haired, handsome boy that was washing and caring for the smaller elephants. My dad kept me there talking for what seemed like forever asking how he came to be working with the circus, what were the challenges, what were the takeaways for him, did he enjoy his work and traveling, etc., etc., and then a couple weeks later I got these funny little earrings. We never talked about it but I always felt that there was a lesson in that moment for me, that my dad was filling me in on a little secret just in having a conversation with someone who seemed so not like me, but perhaps really was...hence the earrings to commemorate. The other piece of jewelry is my brown bear pendant that I wear almost every single day still (I've had it since high school). It's meant to be protective and healing and is associated with great strength, power and self-knowledge. When I take it off to wear a different necklace for special occasions I will sometimes place my hand at the base of my neck and panic thinking it's gone...I'm so used to having it on it's almost become a part of me. 

This was a fun prompt! I can't really say that I think or put too much thought in my clothing most days...was kind of interesting to think about different things in this way. 

Here's the prompt for next week...

52 Questions | Week 1


I have formed a little journaling group (open to anyone!) and the idea is to share weekly prompts (I post them on Sundays) and then everyone who wishes or has the time, has the week to think about, create something, art journal, photo journal, blog, etc. about how they feel about the prompt. I created a private group where people can share what they write or create but nobody has to feel as though they have to share to be a part of the group. I've been craving creative connection lately but life has been so busy and challenging lately that I don't have time (or the energy) for a big project or commitment. This is perfect for me and I'm hoping it's rewarding to others as well.  

Here is our first week's prompt and my interpretation of it. 

Unexpected or big change has always been hard for me. Ever since I was a little girl I liked knowing what was coming up ahead so that I could be sure to feel ready. Before making any big decisions I would have to mull things over in my head for some time before committing to anything regarding change out this way it may have appeared that I was quick to decide things, but in reality, I would keep things locked up tight inside until I was really certain about whatever it was that would be changing in my life (the things that I could control). I didn't want the outside noise of other ideas, expectations, or people's thoughts to cloud up the decisions that would affect my life. 

When I was young that looked like not learning to ride my bike without training wheels for some time until bam(!), one day I just did it (because I had practiced it in my mind and just finally decided to do it). It looked like getting my ears pierced (on a whim) when really I had been thinking about it for months and just hadn't told anyone. When a bit older it looked like breaking up with a boyfriend after dating for three years after sitting and watching a morning sunrise - it had been done and over in my mind for some time and in that moment, it was just time to say it our loud. It looked like quitting school and then starting somewhere else, surprising all those closest to me. So many other examples but the gist is that for some time I was able to feel as though I could control the changes that were occurring in my life by either closing off to things until I felt ready or just shutting myself away from acknowledging certain feelings I had regarding changes (death of friends is a good example of this). 

As an adult I have realized that these have been coping mechanisms - my "sort of" arranging my life to eliminate as much change as possible...the act of creating an illusion that there isn't change but in reality there is change happening in my life every day. I know it's the one constant. I also know that I am a creature of comfort and due to life events, my tendency still is to create a false safety net of sorts to feel safe by trying to create a false sense of control when it comes to change. 

When my parents divorced when I went off to college, in my mind, I lost my entire family. I no longer had the home that I grew up in. I no longer had the town where we all lived to go back to. I didn't get to be a part of my mom's "new" family since I was grown up and on my own. I didn't "grow up" with my little sister like I envisioned, etc. Everything changed in an instant, and that shook my world. I think it's that experience that shifted something inside of me where I felt as though I absolutely needed to "control" change and what that would look like in my life. I quickly discovered that doesn't work out so well! I've learned that the more that I resist change, the harder and more difficult my life becomes. If I lean into change and meet it softly, albeit slowly, and with open arms...things tend to go quite a bit better. 

Change is the one thing I can count on in life and over the years I have had to get on board with it or risk missing the boat that takes me through experiencing a genuine and full life. I have gone through so much change it feels (as everyone does) - little changes (moves, health, body changes, milestones, priorities, job changes, etc.) as well as big changes (my dad getting sick with Parkinson's, dad's death, changes to family dynamics and structure, changing roles, dog's death, priorities, living life with a pandemic, homeschooling Zoey, preparing for Zoey to off to college, anticipation of how my life will change with Zoey gone away to school, etc.). 

It would be easy to look at all of this change and be overwhelmed, and in moments when I am going through some of these life experiences I absolutely am (terrified actually!!) but when it comes down to it, I feel that I have grown so much due to every single moment of struggle and worry. Every single one of these experiences surrounding change has required me to be open or to close up and retreat. Working at remaining open has been the route that I've been actively pursuing as it's the one thing that helps me get through to the other side of whatever it is that I'm going through. More often than not, there is something so beautiful waiting for me on the other side. 

My hope is that moving forward, I am able to stay this course and trust and have faith that I will be able to get through any and all changes that may be ahead. Sometimes simply manifesting the belief that all will be well is what can make it so. This reflection is hopefully serving that purpose! 

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new” -Socrates

Scrapbook Layout | February 2022 Main Kit from My Creative Scrapbook



My final layout share using this month's Main Kit from My Creative Scrapbook! I have had so much fun creating projects with this kit! It was truly an amazing way to start off my design team journey with MCS that's for sure. I knew that I wanted to use this splattered artsy patterned paper for a page and this one came together quite nicely just featuring one photo and then adding die-cuts and other ephemera around it. 

Scrapbook Layout | February 2022 Main Kit from My Creative Scrapbook



Good morning creative friends! This morning I'm sharing with you a layout that I actually created a process video for...something that I'm really not all that good at yet but that I'm determined to get better at this year. It's one of my personal goals, so if you want to take a peek at where I'm at right now go ahead and scroll down to the bottom of this post. Just remember...I'm still learning so please be kind!