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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

More Amaryllis Birds

I can't tell you how much I love making these little necklaces of mine. When I make them my mind gets a much needed break from the 'everyday' and gets to sit quietly to bask in the delicious colours and texture of beads...oh how I love beads. I am the kinda gal who says 'no don't buy me that golden diamond ring...I want the beaded one instead..." ha ha. Plus, it's always nice to see your imagery in different formats...I've made some necklaces of this Red Bird before, you've most likely seen the version on the right, but now I've added the orange-y kind to the selection as well. What do you think?

Monday, March 30, 2009

Forwards with New Necklaces

So how does one continue forward with 'light' and 'good' and 'pretty' topics on the back on something heavy and important like last week's posts about the seal hunt? ....I guess you just do and just plunge on forward... So, here are some new necklaces I made last week. The right hand one is sold and the left is being held for an upcoming sale/art show here in town, but I wanted to show them to you anyhow. I really love the one on the right and I was so pleased when a beloved friend bought it for another lovely friend...the circle of artists supporting artists is indeed alive and well. Be Well and Happy Creating. Until tomorrow where I have 2 new necklaces to show you.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Help END Canada's Seal Hunt

I was feeling so so hopeful last week when I learnt of Senator Mac Harb's Bill. This is the first time ever that a politician is actually taking the steps and trying to get a new law passed to end the barbaric seal hunt in Canada. If this bill passes, I will finally 100% be able to proudly call myself Canadian...because the greatness of a nation is indeed partly reflected in how they treat that lands animals.
This is the time of year when I walk around heartsick. Any little bit of goodness and happiness is admittedly tainted knowing that the seal hunt begins this week. Knowing that 280,000 harp seal babies will be brutally killed...clubbed to death, skinned alive, or shot and left to die a slow and painful death....the only 'rule' for the murderers is the babies fur has to have begun to 'molt' which is at about 2 weeks old...is truly enough to taint any good day.
Writing this post and about this topic is not easy for me, as I write I want to cry. I want to curl up and hide and shake my head because I simply can not understand a humans need or want to kill an animal. Expressing this ultra sensitive side to all of this is not easy for me. Admitting that during deer season I hole up at home and refuse to drive the roads where I might see deers piled up on some red-necks trucks, is not easy because I like to be or at let pretend that I am strong...but I will bare my soul and beg for your time and efforts, on behalf of the seals and all animals that I feel so connected with and so in love with (and yes more connected to than the mass of humans currently destroying our world).
As for the people who 'engage' in the seal hunt...let's just truly hope that Karma is indeed a bitch!
The only glimmer of light I see in all of this is that IFAW is there for us. They are there for us who care, for those who are too weak to do much and for those not able to bring about change all on our own. Through a joined front, with IFAW, we can hopefully finally make a change. To make a donation to IFAW and help in their continued action please do click here. Jonathan and I are both proud members and any little bit you can give helps out.
We both received our 'action postcards' and will immediately be sending those out, including emails and letters as well. I am writing to you today with hopes that you'll help me and IFAW and all the exquisite precise seals that don't deserve to die in these on-going horrific slaughters.
What can you do to help? which will cost you nothing but a few minutes of your time?
You can CLICK HERE to go straight to IFAW's page to enter your name, etc and send your electronic 'vote/voice'. Canadians...CLICK HERE to send a letter to your local MP. I just filled out both forms. The first will go to all Canadian MP's and the 2nd will go to your regional Canadian MP, for us here in North Bay, it's Anthony Rota.
Senator Harb is trying to fill his office with 200,000 plus action cards, emails and letters in the next few weeks. Each motion of support will represent 1 of the seals murdered in last years seal hunt. Never before has an end to the seal hunt felt so possible, please don't loose on this opportunity to help end it once and for all.
As well as filling out IFAW's forms, please also feel free to leave a 'comment' saying your against the seal hunt and in favour of the Harb Bill on this post, leave your name and location and if I can compile enough of a list, I will gladly forward it to IFAW on behalf of myself & this blog and all of you who care as well. If you do, I thank you so very much in advance.
I know you might be thinking 'what can a letter, or my signature do?' well, it can do alot in showing Parliament that we all care about ending the senseless and needless suffering of an exquisite and beautiful species that we should be inherently and proudly protecting. We can not undo the past, but we can move forward in a united front, we can voice our need for a more positive and kind future...we can strongly send the message that we are not proud to be Canadians until this slaughter ends once and for all.
...as IFAW so brilliantly says "Senator Harb has opened the door...the world is watching...Let's show them what we can do".

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

My Third Knitted Hat

I just had to show you all my third hat attempt...it's my favourite so far and so cozy and comfy as I used a super soft chunky wool. I intended to do it all in black but I ran out of black! so I thought okay 'let's put some brown in and make it work somehow...' so I finished it off in the light brown and than decided to add the two weaved lines around the black band and than remembered I had recently gotten some cool buttons, so I sewed them on and voila...a new hat.
I am a really tight knitter though because you can often hear my needles and/or wool making a screech or scrap like sound, ha ha...so my hands need a break for abit I think...it's been fun to dive into a completely different medium for a bit...I still can't believe I made 3 hats in one week! Though my aching fingers are telling me to believe it!
There is alot to accomplish this week and I feel behind already...the full or almost full moons are keeping me up and bubbling with ideals as usual and the lack of sleep isn't helping me along very much. Though, my dear and oldest pal Lisa and her two beautiful boys are in town visiting this week and I am so happy to be able to spend time with them. It'll be a busy week and though I have much cooking, I am only popping in today to show you my newest hat from last week.
Just as a Heads Up, I think I'll be doing a 'Giveaway' quite soon, March 6th marked the one year anniversary of my keeping this blog and I think though abit late, that deserves a celebration of sorts...so keep tuning in for that...Bye for Now and Happy Creating.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I Feel So Grateful

This past weekend was a tiring one. Our little Beloved Northern abode is surrounded by many trees...for a city-limits house, it has ALOT of trees actually, which is one reason we bought this little place of ours. Well this past week we had a bad wind storm with winds up to 90km/h and long story short, it knocked down one of our precise trees...a 30-35 foot jack pine at least a foot in diameter, which went crashing down into our back neighbours yard, crashing onto their whirlpool and deck...Ugh! So most of our weekend was cleaning up that mess...but I was so impressed because regardless of that mini-disaster, we still found time for; a walk, movies, naps, dinner with friends, a batch of home made brownies, outings with the buns and most importantly, our strong and sturdy spirits remained intact despite seeing one of our beloved trees come to an end! Coming from that weekend into today and as I set forth on a new week I am feeling so full and grateful. I am grateful for my amazing and strong and sweet Jonathan. I am grateful for my mom. I am grateful for my dad, who without hesitation or notice always comes to help us out when we need it. I am grateful for our friends, who so lovingly engulf us with hugs and welcome us into their families. I am so grateful for the bunnies and the warmth and love and insight they provide. I am grateful for our cozy and warm house and my vortex of a studio/s.... I could go on...may you all be having a day filled with grace and gratitude as well. Be Well until tomorrow...Be Well. XO Mandy.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Avian Series All Together

I promised my best friend that I would soon show what the Avian painting look like as a grouping, so here they are...quite lovely I think. I have something special I am doing with them which I'll hopefully be announcing next week...Until than, have a wonderful relaxing weekend and thanks for sharing some of your time with me this week.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

A New Hat & Roo

Because our handsome Roo was not feeling well this week, I've spent alot of time at home yet away from my work and studio. With Roo not being well we've had worry and stress, long nights and little sleep and on top of that because of the crazy weather I've had a persistent and annoying week long headache, so I guess my mind just wasn't 100% on my work. So I don't have any new images to show you but I did make another knitted hat, ha ha... This one in a reddish orange colour. After I finished it I weaved a fluffy pure white wool through the bottom half and ended up really happy with it. This one turned out better than the first as I altered the pattern abit. and because I've been mentioning Roo, I thought I'd show one of my recent favourite photos of him...it's kinda washed out and grainy but there's something about it that's warm and nostalgic and I love it. He's doing much better today...the tummy 'sludge' and bladder infection are slowly clearing and he's looking more like his normal self...hopefully he'll be 100% in another day or so.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Suggesting 'Jason's' Products for the Sake of Those Beautiful Eyes...

(Our sweet Jinny in the sunlight, photo taken by my Jonathan and if you look closely you can see my face reflected in her beautiful eye)
I once in awhile I post about the importance of buying cruelty-free products and I haven't done so in awhile so I thought I would today share with you one of our very favourite and excellent cruelty-free brands...
Jason Body Products are wonderful. We have many of their items as you can see and ALL are cruelty-free. You can find them in most holistic/health stores and sometimes at places like walmart or shoppers. The Aloe Vera Gel is Jonathan's favourite and the Tea Time moisturizer and the Cooling Mineral Gel are my favourites. I highly suggest this brand, their products are lovely, natural, organic and very affordable.

Hope this post helps further convert even just one more person to switching over to "Cruelty-Free' and I hope it helps those already in transition to find a product replacements that lets them finally say "I love it, this ones a keeper". Be Well and thanks for your time as always.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

A White Knitted Hat & Good Books

So this past weekend was lovely and filled with relaxing, good food, good movies, a good visit with my sweet niece and some knitting...

My first every knitted hat and I am quite pleased with the results. It was quick to make and even though I screwed up quite a few times one can't really tell, I don't think! I wove a blue and green silk braided ribbon through just to add abit of spring-ish colour. And I am so pleased with how well the hat matches my beloved white sweater from my nanny that my mom gifted to me a couple months ago. Also for today, I must recommend these books which I recently finished and really enjoyed. 'Maid Marian' was a fun historical fictional read obviously about Maid Marian and her romance with Robin Hood, not one of the best but enjoyable. I am admittedly a big Luanne Rice fan and have every single one of her books in paperback, her latest "Light of the Moon' was a lovely read that I very much enjoyed. And "The Shadows of the Wind" by Carlos Ruiz Zafron, set in the thuggish and dark 18th century post-war Barcelona, this book is a gripping thriller/mystery full of incredibly huge characters that just grab you and pull you alongside a rich and intriguing mystery and just doesn't let you go, even after you've consumed the last page. I couldn't' put this one down and it is defiantly added to my 'favourites' list, I highly recommend this one.

Now that I've popped in to say 'Hello", I am off again to tend to a throbbing in my head and a rabbit who needs abit of extra TLC and attention at the moment. Until next post Be Well.

Monday, March 9, 2009

10 More Things You May Not Know About Me...

1 . I would someday like to live in places like; Seattle, London, Cuba, New York, Ireland, New Zealand, Germany, Italy, Bali and San Francisco for atleast a month each.
2. I dream of using my art to work extensively with an animal advocacy group/s.
3. I am slightly obsessed with reading historical fiction...especially stories about queens and kings and royalty. I just finished "Shadows of the Sun" and have to 'officially' add it to my 'favourites' pile.
4. I must have atleast 3 spoons of sugar in any of my black teas or coffee and lots of cream, otherwise I just don't enjoy it at all! I get my sweet tooth from my dad. 5. I have horrible luck with my teeth...Apparently my favourite pastime as a kid and young adult of sucking on lemons wasn't a good thing!
6. I love ashtanga and hatha yoga and pilates.
7. I relax and de-stress by running on my treadmill.
8. I am hyper yet calm at the same time, very ultra sensitive to almost everything but espeacially towards animals, and I am usually stressing about 20 things all at once! It's the magic that is me!
9. When I was a kid, I dreamt of being a mountain rescue or water rescue person...but as I grew older I realized I get to sucky and grouchy when I get super cold for too long! and I am not at all a strong swimmer..I hated all of my swimming classes, sigh so alas some dreams must fade!
10. My biggest dream is to one day successfully operate my full time studio in the middle of a huge and happy rabbit sanctuary...recusing rabbits from testing labs, etc...where my studio and work is the primary source to operate the rabbit sanctuary...that's my biggest heart of heart hope and dream (how this will work with #1, I am not quite sure of yet!).

Thursday, March 5, 2009

An Art & Ghosts Print From My Honey

So a few weeks ago, whiles browsing about my favourite Etsy shops, I ventured into "Art & Ghosts" shop and saw this print that I freaked out over and just had to have! Well, okay...ha ha, I freak out over alot of stuff and 'feel' like I just have to have it but often I of course don't end up with it. But in this case I did! I haven't framed it yet but I adore it so much... I am usually not so crazy about computer generated imagery but this image just so perfectly and beautifully speaks to me. It captures an essence of my life and my soul both of which are filled with rabbits, both of which nurture them and in return are nurtured by them. My relationship with rabbits is a very symbiotic one (in my own sense) and this image is the very first image I've ever seen that struck my heart chords because it so perfectly illustrates this very intense, personal and unique relationship of mine to lagomorphs. A friend even commented that the girl in the picture looks like an Elizabethan version of me. I could go on and on about all the little things in this illustration and how I see them as being related to me and the rabbits...but I'll stop here and just say I LOVE it, I LOVE it, I LOVE it and thanks Jonathan for buying it for me and thanks to Louise for making it.

Aside from the print we bought, this other little beauty was given to us as an extra treat, which I so appreciated and love because it was, serendipitously, the other print of hers that I was looking at getting. It fits perfectly into one of our dining room frames and there it now happily lives and delights all viewers.

Now when oh when will other artists start falling in love with my prints and just 'have to have it'!...sigh.... I am not sure if I will be posting tomorrow or not....I am feeling somewhat of a slave to this blog lately and think I must back off ever so slightly...I am just always so excited to show you all my new work, etc but alas it does take time away from other things I should be doing right now, such as concentrating on new Nubbins. So let's say that I'll see all again here next Monday or Tuesday...until then, be well, be joyful and be inspired...whether it be through your own art or someone else's.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

New Painting "Avian #5"

As promised here is the last painting of the Avian series, Avian #5. This was my very first ever series and I am quite happy with how they turned out. Creating the same character over and over, in the same colour etc was challenging but a good experience.

I am ready to move onto a new series now but I will come back in a day or two with some shots of all the Avian paintings together. The latest one is still drying in the sunshine upstairs and I don't want to mess up it's final coating in my haste to take the photos! which would be my normal protocol!

The last two days I've been working in my upstairs studio which I share with Jin and Hazel...who in the last 2 blissfully sunny days have kept me great company and quite amused by how they happily spend the whole day sunning themselves on their window bench...getting up just long enough to stretch; yawn; eat the banana I've just served and then they smartly turn around to sun the other sides of their beautiful glossy coats, ha ha.

Until the next post, be well, be inspired and be creative. XO Mandy.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Presents From My Best Friend

So last week, I mentioned receiving a parcel from my best friend Judit. Well I just can't help but share with you all some of what was in that lovely package. She sent me two of her beautifully designed pillow covers (which I serendiptously had two old pillows that fit into them just so perfectly). Here's one of them that has found it's perfect home on my computer chair...
This is the second pillow in beautiful reds and chocalate brown that so perfectly matches our upstairs living room decor...
Ohhh I love them so much and as excited and happy as I know Judit is in having her pillows in our house, I am equally happy and excited to have recieved them and to be able to use them in our home...so all visitors get ready to constantly hear me proudly annouce "...my best friend made these..." ha ha. (You can buy Judit's pillows here).
Aside from the gourgues pillows, Judit sent this beautiful silk headband or neck scarf with one of her beautiful patterns...
...which of course I've been wearing constantly and just adore.
Well that's about it for today. Join me back here tommorow for the latest and last (for now) of the Avian paintings. Be Well, Be Joyful and Be Inspired.

Monday, March 2, 2009

New Painting 'Avian 4" & Birthday Wishes

As promised last week, I have a new painting to show you. The 4th little painting on wood in my Avian series.

I am very pleased with it and they are all looking so lovely together. The golds and silvers in the paintings come through abit more in the scans than in these photographs. I will put the originals up for sale shortly after the whole series is complete. Whether it will be on my new website, at my Etsy shop or somewhere else, I've still yet to determine.

Today is a speacil day...it's my dad's birthday....HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD, my big and strong dad is 58 years young. We'll be seeing you later on this evening dad...

Thanks for stopping in and until tomorrow, by joyful, be inspired and be creative.