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Friday, February 27, 2009

Feed Your Creative Soul

As I grow as an artist and as a person. As I learn to protect my priorities and tender heart more fiercely. As I tackle the tricky landscape of creativity...one message keeps surfacing as being so crucial and important to ensure that the circle of life, art, and growth continues strongly and in support of one another... And that message is to Live, Love and Laugh but beyond all else feed your creative soul....feed your creative soul but beyond all else Live, Love and Laugh...a self-supporting circle, as important said forwards as backwards.

Yesterday my creative soul was fed by my parents sweet as pie puppy, whom I succumbed to spending the whole day with doing nothing but loving, snuggling and defiantly alot laughing. In the evening I tucked my forever crammed and zooming brain under my headphones and ran for a blissful hour on the treadmill...In whatever form filling up your creative well and special life may come in..may you always know that it's there for you every single day.

Until next week where I promise I'll have some new work to share with you. We've (and mostly Jonathan) has been working tirelessly on the new website and it's looking so great and I am getting so excited to show everyone but it'll be another couple of weeks yet. Have a great weekend and thank you for stopping by.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Brillant Light & Love in Shadow & Pain

It strikes me as beautiful that despite the awful night I had yesterday I was at the exact same time so aware of how lovely the night was too. I honestly love days like this because they remind that I am indeed growing as a human...and more and more able to appreciate the brillant love and goodness in my life, despite any bad.

(photo by my honey)

So here's what happened....nothing big or earth shattering by any means just little tiny moi feeling somewhat despondent lately, from my work and from those around me. But, in keeping true to my self-imposed promise of not withdrawing 'inwards' but instead reaching outwards, I kept my lunch date with my dear friend Becca, where we were later joined by her boyfriend Darren and the 3 of us just had the nicest chat about life, family, our businesses and struggles and following our truest selves instead of taking the easier routes which may be funner but not always so authentic or right. I left my friends feeling so grateful for them. I left them feeling more positive and again ready to step positively into my beloved studio. Without even knowing it, they were there when I needed a hand and a push upwards and that meant the world because it reminded me that they will always be there when I really need them, weather I ask them to be or not.

But, despite the fact that I was indeed feeling much cheerier...I was still really missing my best friend. There awaiting me in the mailbox upon my arrival home was a package from Judit. However by this time, for reasons unbeknown-st to me, a monster migraine had quickly set it's sharp dagger teeth in...but I just had to rip into my parcel, so whiles I did so, Jonathan completely understanding that I could do nothing else at that moment but rip into my parcel, ha ha...made me a super strong coffee (which sometimes helps my head) and I sat with that coffee made with love and the super long delicious letter amongst all the beautiful love-filled goodies (I'll show you them very soon). I found myself tearful...not because I was sad, but because I suddenly, despite the bad head pain, felt so happy and charmed; Here was my steadfast sweet sweet man waiting patiently to give me a back rub. Here I was just coming from a lovely afternoon with two lovely and supportive friends. Here I was with a package just for me from one of my most favourite and loved people in the whole world.....Well needless to say, I suddenly felt so silly for ever feeling disjointed from my life because just when I needed them I had a flurry of beautiful reminders that I was far far from alone.

So anyhow...of course the head pain got increasingly worse, so bad so that I wasn't able to sleep a wink...and in true form Jonathan didn't either, he never leaves me alone during my worse migraines and that alone makes my heart squeeze with love. But also this evening 'Bad-Timing' saw it fit to have a nice chunk of glass find it's way deep into my heel! On top of this! Ella-Luna looked liked she wasn't feeling well (or she was just worried about me because she always acts 'weird' when her mama isn't feeling well...she just knows) anyhow there we were at 2am from 3am with my honey carefully digging that damn piece of glass out of my foot! because of the headache I couldn't bend over to see it and it had to come out because well I could barely walk on that foot! At 4am we were giving Ella-Luna a nice warm bath because she had abit of diarrhea and she hates being dirty...and again it just struck me...the beauty in this tiring, pain-ridden night. Despite everything, I felt so loved and so full and so lucky and so part of my special little family that I felt like I would burst with happiness!

It's just funny and wonderful how things turn out...especially when you can see the Light in the Dark.

...May you all find your light in your darks...Be Well...and until the next post...Wishing you strong and flowing creativity.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

It Was a Good Day for a Snuggle

No need to say more...except a thank-you to my awesome Jonathan for taking these great shots.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

New Painting "Avian 3"

As promised, here is the third Avian painting. I spent the day at my mom's yesterday and between our chatting and snuggling the puppy, I got this one finished off and another one well started. I am really into these little guys now and it is finally dawning on me how nice and practical doing work in a series is. I have lots of new ideals for more series with fresh new plans for those ideals and I am hoping that I am finally onto something! I have 2 more to finish up by end of this week than I will take a break from them to move onto another series I have all drawn out and ready to go. But I will be back to this 'Avian' series as I hope to at least create a collection of 12 or 15. This is my favourite one so far, what do you all think? Be Well and Happy Creating.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Favourite New Find

I am just popping in quickly today to share with you one of my favourite new finds. Whiles out and about in a thrift store a couple weekends ago I found this old glass bobble...which I know was an light attachment but as soon as I set my eyes on it, I had to have it...and for only $4.00, why not! I brought it home, gave it a good scrub, used one of my dad's wooden vases as it's base and Voila, a perfect and beautiful new candle holder...I just love it and have been using it almost every evening since I got it. I love finding uses for old things and it defiantly proves the old adage right...someones else's trash is indeed another persons new found treasure, ha ha.

I am so happy and pleased that my best friend Judit, featured my new necklaces on her blog last week. Judit and I usually share very similar tastes and I know she is also like me in that she won't post anything on her blog that she doesn't really like, so I am just glad that my necklaces made the cut, ha ha. Click here to read the post. Thanks Judit.

Until tomorrow, when I'll finally be able to show you the 3rd Avian painting...Be Well and Happy Creating.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A Beautiful Weekend Past

What felt like a somewhat difficult week 'creative-journey' wise ended up being brilliant and leaving me sighing with utter happiness and my heart wrapped in coziness...I love days like that. The sun was shining and it felt like I haven't seen the sun in weeks so I admit to being catlike and lounging about in the spills of sunshine quite abit, ha ha. The jazz station was playing a delicious and brilliant assortment. The rabbits seemed extra content and sleepy (finally our Ella Luna has calmed down and reverted back to her sweet behaved, yet always spirited self!) and I found time not only to sleep in, but to also make myself a delicious lunch, to sit under a warm blanket and dive into a book for abit...to rabbit snuggle...AND time to sit in the glorious sun with napping bunnies around me to happily start a new painting...ahhh...life felt grand...THAN...

My handsome honey walked through the door calling out "Mandy, where are you?..." he was in search of me because his arms were full of flowers and his face full of that gorgues smile of his that I love ohhh so much...ahhhh too much, a bouquet of these sweet smelling white ones for my upstairs studio AND a bouquet of roses for the living room and my downstairs studio...now how spoiled am I!...but wait...

...ha ha, did I mention that he surprised by buying me my favourite all-time game for the PS2 and had it shipped to little moi, so I got a surprise in the mailbox in the middle of the afternoon....

...wait, it's not done...THAN, I had a delicious dinner made for me, yum yum yum...oh and a fantastic hazelnut coffee...life is indeed very very good and I'll admit that without hesitation, guilt, or fear of being jinxed or punished! Plus, family day...an extra day to have my honey at home...bliss....happiness...bliss...sighhhhhhhh.....ha ha.
Hope your weekend was lovely too. Until tomorrow be well. XOXO

Friday, February 13, 2009

Love Deeply

Of course I didn't illustrate any valentines day pictures! I need to get better at that, ha ha. I meant too, but I've been to occupied in my world of 'Nubbins' and other sparks of creativity. But I did take abit of time to play around with one of my photographs...not too shabby for someone who barely used a computer, ha ha. Anyhow, just popping in quickly today to wish you all a very Happy Valentine's Day weekend...

...May you Love Deeply, as much as you can, for as long as you can, and with as many as you can...Happy Valentines...See you all Monday. Love Love Love, Mandy a.k.a. Bijou of Bijou's Whimsy.

(p.s. To my amazing man...your love is beyond belief and beyond words, Happy V-Day my super-genius, thank you thank you thank you...love you love you love you...to infinite. XXOO)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Who Could Resist

Who can resist a new pup...especially one as cute as this one, ha ha. I was glad to spend another day over at my mom's this week...I was happy to spend the day with this cute little fur person and I gladly babysat for abit so my mom could go out for some errands.

...and I was happy to enjoy my mom's company and good conversation and of course our always delicious lunches together...today it was a beautiful spinach and sauteed mushroom salad with baby tomatoes, poppy seeds and fresh Parmesan made by my mom...and a yummy black bean soup made by moi....

As we ate lunch, Maggie decided she was safer up on the counter, out of reach of little doggie paws...her look of annoyance is undeniable, ha ha but the two are slowly getting to know one another and getting along better than anticipated.

...after lunch we decided a little bit of dessert was in order...a teeny-weeny slice of strawberry cheesecake, fresh strawberries dipped in chocolate and peach teas were in order...
...and Missie, forever the black blur, ha ha...waited patiently as we finished up our feast...
It was a lovely day and I am glad to be back on track with my weekly visit with my mom. I usually get a good amount of work done there as well...
...but today wasn't so successful as Missie would lounge on my sketchbook or steal my pencil, and well just wanted to play and I can't resist saying no to her adorable sweet little self....
...though I did manage to get my 4th paper cut design sketched out (so keep your eyes open for those soon hopefully)....and this, in simple and sweet images was how I spent my Wednesday. Charmed for sure and exhausted most defiantly as our Ella Luna is 'nesting' and only let us get about 2 hours of sleep the previous night!
Until tomorrow...Be Well, Be Happy and Be Inspired...and get over to the shop and buy a necklace! Pretty Please with strawberry cheesecake on top!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Member of PETA

Just popping in quickly today to remind all animal lovers out there to renew their memberships, or to join as a member of PETA for this new year, if you already haven't.

(As a member, we received from PETA, this great package at Xmas time with fantastic recipes and this beautiful poignant photograph)

Jonathan and I are members, we have been for a few years now and it's a very crucial cause in the continuing fight for Ethical Treatment of Animals. I know some people don't like or just don't understand PETA. Sometimes their methods are seen as being too extreme...but in this day and age, where most of the population of this earth is desensitized, extreme methods, extreme visuals and extreme action is what is necessary to engage people and to spark change. PETA and it's people work with a strength and courage that people like me just don't have. Aside from talking about animals and ethics, etc once in awhile on my blog, encouraging friends and family through my own daily practices of animal kindness and dedication and perhaps, I finally admit to sometimes 'hissing' at the old ladies who walk past in fur coats! I just don't have the heart strength or vocal power myself to invoke change...so I count on great organizations like PETA. A membership is cheap...it's worthwhile...it helps them continue the fight...so please, if you love animals, do your part and join.

Incase you haven't noticed I have included a new section to the sidebar with my favourite links referring to Cruelty-Free companies, which products are and are not cruelty-free and also which companies do and do not test on animals. I have been asked a couple times now, as to where I find such info, so these are the links that I refer to often. When I find others I will add them. I've included this on my blog for everyone's easy convience and I hope it helps.

Thanks for listening....and perhaps considering. Be Well and until the next post Happy Creating.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Necklaces in the Shop

You can now officially buy the following necklaces from the shop...
Finally, I was able to take some good and flattering shots and I finally got this small batch into my Etsy shop.

I have to toot my own here and say that I truly think my necklaces are very well made, unique because of my colourful and whimiscal illustration and just really fun to wear. I am hoping that they sell quickly...so if your interested head on over to the shop to check them out and hopefully pick one out for yourself and/or a loved one.

Join me tomorrow for something new...and thanks for taking time out of your day to pop in.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Welcoming a New Pup

My parents surprised us last weekend by calling and telling us they brought home a new puppy. And this is the adorable little fur person with the sweetest face and personality who is the newest addition to the Saile family...
They named her Missie (though she was almost named Milla) and she's sweet as pie. I spent all of Wednesday at my moms this past week, just playing with her and holding her when she napped (which right now is all the time, ha ha) and just staring at her adorable precise little self. My mom says she has 'hot lips' and Jonathan and I say her little face is very reminiscent of an Ewok. I can't stay away long...I had to go visit with her again on the weekend and I plan to again this week for sure...a new furry baby is always a wonderful thing.
Welcome sweet little darling...Welcome.

Friday, February 6, 2009

New Avian Painting

Just popping in to share the 2nd painting on wood in the Avian series. Now I am off to ski with a friend...Have a wonderful weekend everyone and see you here again on Monday where I reveal the newest addition to the Saile family.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

For the Sake of Rabbits Worldwide....

This is our beautiful and most wonderful Roo...a giant chinchilla who we happily adopted into our home about 3 years ago...those eyes of his, are the windows to beauty and peace...look at him, and look into his eyes and tell me it's okay to take rabbits just like our Roo here and tape their eyes open to smear lipstick on...the spray perfume on...to pour bleach on...until the rabbits either die or go blind...and this is considered the least evasive of animal testing...Now, I am not trying to ruin your day...but I promised myself that I would authentically blog and so please next time you buy beauty products or household products think our or precise Roo and millions of other just like him that aren't lucky enough to be in a loving home but stuck in a testing lab cage...

I am posting today from the deepest place in my heart and asking you, my dear readers to Please use Cruelty-Free, Not Tested on Animals Products, if you already are not. Again, I won't terrify anyone by showing the reality to you in photos etc, because some of the photos I've seen are quite traumatizing and are to this day still seared in my brain and scorched on my heart, but seriously if you love animals, be it rabbits or dogs or cats, than don't live another day in support of companies and products that treat them inhumanely. Switching your current products to cruelty-free is easy and just as affordable and nowadays there is a wide range of choice in most stores for your easy convience. You just have to look for the little rabbit logo or 'not-tested on animals' caption on any packaging for a clean and free and conscientious purchase. I've shown you our favourite Cruelty-Free products before, but I haven't done so in awhile, so I wanted to again stress the importance of doing this simple act...and I wanted to show you one of our favourite new lines..."Earth Therapeutics"... This is just a small sampling of the products we have by Earth Therapeutics. Pictured here are their fantastic Green Tea soaps, heel repair balm, stress relief bath salts, Bedtime lotion, hand cream, foot cream, body scrubs and my most favourite, the lavender and chamomile body wash.

This line is only one of many many cruelty-free options out there, so don't just think because you can't find the ones I suggest here on this blog that there aren't any to be had, part of the fun is looking and trying all the wonderful choices out there...experiment with different cruelty-free brands to find your favourites, trust me you won't be sorry.

Thanks for listening, I hope this post sparks even just one person to change over to better and more conscientious buying habits and I hope, as always that you'll join me back here another day. Be Well and of course Happy Creating.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

10 Things You May Not Know About Me

The other day I saw fellow blogger do this "Ten Things You May Not Know About Me" and I really liked the ideal...a fun way for my readers to get abit more inside info about me and my world and work...so here we go...
You May Not Know That...
1. I have been with my honey, Jonathan for 16 years now, we meet in a strawberry field when I was 15 years old and he is my biggest artistic fan and supportor.
2. I can not create without music on...and usually I play it fairly loud...I am somewhat addicted to the sky.fm stations and the Toronto Jazz Fm.
3. At our bunny journey peak, all at once, we had 6 rabbit and a skinny pig...I miss those days terribly. The house was so full and chaotic and busy and warm and everyday I miss those who had to leave us. Our first bunny was Beanie, than came my first skinny pig Gimmley, than followed our Ella-Luna, then the best skinny pig ever named Thodan, than we found Roo lost in the forest, then came the triplets we saved from a farm Noodle, Jin and Hazel, than came the wondrous muse and beautiful soul in Hobbs whom we found in our backyard with broken leg...now you know all of our babies names...Rabbits fill my life, my heart, my soul and my art.
4. I am crazy about books...A home isn't cozy to me unless it is filled with books.
5. I don't eat meat and I am very rigid within our household about only buying cruelty-free products.
6. I think if there is a god on earth it may very well be Peter Gabriel...or atleast look and sound like him, ha ha.
7. My favourite sweets are chocolate dipped strawberries, strawberries dipped in whipped cream and chocolate covered marzipan.
8. My favourite alcohol is Peppermint Schnapps. My favourite non-alcohol is Iced Tea with no ice!
9. I love to dance but my honey doesn't, so I do so alone, crazy style in my studio whenever my little heart pleases.
10. So far I have travelled to Germany, Switzerland, alittle bit in the States in and around Traverse City and Mackinaw Island, A month travelled around the West Coast, A month touring the East Coast, and of course around our beautiful Ontario.
That all for today, until the next post...Happy Creating and Please do pop back in again.