the CEO! Creative Eternal Optimist! Blog
Friday, April 30 2010
It is Fowl Friday with Fran & Freda! Big news we are apparently getting ready to fly the coop this summer. Debra is off this weekend checking out some new nests for us to feather. We of course put in a request for certain amenities, a word we have heard often this past couple weeks! I want an ensuite, Freda would like a jacuzzi to soak in. Her legs get tired from all the dancing and she loves her bubbles! A yard with a pool of course or at least a pond for us, ocean view and maid service. Debra has often remarked we have maid service already, her. Don't tell her but as a maid she is not so great, in fact we would fire her but since we don't pay her that is kind of hard to do and she does own the place!
So while Debra is gone we were given instructions to declutter the coop. That is not easy, you never know when one red rubber boot might be needed, bottle caps, shoelaces, shower cap with holes we got some good stuff! We can't part with any of it but Debra is tough and says we better smarten up or we could end up on Hoarders! Sigh so we will try to purge while she is gone! Wish us luck! Fran & Freda
Wednesday, April 28 2010
May is almost here! Creativity is blossoming everywhere! I wasn't able to participate in the Sizzix Scoreboard bloghop this week but you can check out all the talented designers and wonderful creations on Eileen Hull's blog!
In about three weeks I am off to International Quilt Market in Minneapolis. Everything to do with quilting and sewing happens there! The magazine I write for Creative Homearts is also located there and I get to visit the offices plus stay with my dear friend and editor Julie Stephani! Big plans are in the works so exciting.
The show is inspiring and the displays are amazing, alive with color, pattern and texture! Quilting is a true art form! A great place to conduct business, connect with fabric companies and publishers. I am working on another book proposal and pitching a new fabric line so we will see what happens!
Have a joy filled creative day! Follow the JOY! Debra
Tuesday, April 27 2010
Life is constantly changing with each day. Much of it is in ways we do not notice, we age every day, our children grow, the tree outside the window is suddenly towering over the house. Living cells are in constant motion and always changing. Yet change is one of the hardest things in life for us to deal with. Losing people, children move out and go off to school, favorite places close, these types of major changes are often hard to deal with. We focus on the loss at first, mourning what was but then it is time to move on. Becoming stuck is the real loss for with loss comes space for something new to enter.
I find myself at a place of more major change. In the past two years I moved my mother three times before she passed away, my oldest daughter moved in and back out, my youngest is preparing to move out and away for school and I am considering leaving the city I have lived in for thirty three years. I am thinking of moving to a larger city only an hour and a half away to be closer to the special someone now in my life. I love my home and people are already lining up who want to buy it. It is scary and a little sad, my plan saw me here for many years caring for my Mom while my youngest went to school here. My Mom is now gone and my youngest is off to school in another province and I met a wonderful man. It is also exciting and I am very happy. I am taking a chance, luckily my work moves with me easily so that is a big plus!
I realize after losing a dear friend a short time ago that life is indeed a precious gift and we must live each day fully. I could play it safe and stay here or risk it all and follow my heart. I truly believe life is simply a love story and so I am off on an adventure. I do not know if there are fairy tale endings for princesses over fifty with a combined seven children and two grandchildren part of the package but I do believe there are love stories for all of us, anywhere, anytime, any age!
As I prepare to downsize to an apartment for the initial move my daughters and I have been going through everything from Barbies to school pictures, so many memories. There are many more to make and live.
I have found as each item is sold or donated and leaves my space I feel freer. I choose to live more simply with only things I love around me. So much is leaving, it is though much harder to part with things you still like but have no space for and yet seeing them go off to a good home to be enjoyed is very satisfying.
Now it is back to work! Writing about fuzzy snowmen!
Follow the JOY! Debra, CEO!
Friday, April 23 2010
Fowl Friday with Fran & Freda! You know the expression ...like a chicken with it's um head cut off, well that would describe Debra and her daughter Kate at present! They are having a big garage sale on Saturday, so big in fact we were slightly worried that we might end up in the craft section. Ah yes Debra has sections, did we mention she likes to organize everything! There is electronics, household, furniture, toys, holiday and crafts. Oops I almost forgot outdoor equipment and gardening which will be of course outside the garage. Then items have colored stickers denoting their price point, red for $5, yellow for $3, you get the idea. Kate is serving up tasty muffins for those attending the sale.
Debra is downsizing and Kate will be leaving the nest shortly so stuff has got to go! Debra will never have a completely empty nest as she will always have us. We will be a little sad to leave this house but not sad that the felines are going with Kate! We will be able to shake our feathers without fear or frolic in the bath without furry intervention!
So at the crack of dawn Debra and Kate will be up and busy on Saturday. Freda & I have just requested they be quiet so our beauty sleep is not interrupted. Debra apparently said something I did not quite hear, had to do with chicken wings and supper I think. Follow the Fowl, Fran & Freda!
Wednesday, April 21 2010
Heart, Art and the Earth, we can not exist without these three. It is interesting that the word art is found in both and heart is earth when the h is moved to the end. Tomorrow is the official Earth Day, it has been forty years since the first one was officially declared. Forty years later more than one billion people in a hundred and ninety countries are taking part.
Living with respect is a way of life most of us strive for. The earth needs our respect, man has taken advantage, abused and neglected the earth and the consequences are serious. This is our only home, it is a beautiful, amazing place filled with natural wonders.
It is encouraging to see how people and groups are working together to make a difference. We can all make a difference in our daily lives, living purposefully, reducing our carbon imprint (calculate your own) our waste, our energy consumption, walking more, eating locally. What we do for the earth is also very good for ourselves.
To celebrate Earth Day I am spending as much of the day as possible outside along with decluttering my home even more by donating items to a local charity and organizing a garage sale for the weekend with my daughter.
Celebrate Earth Day with your heart and your art! Live well! Follow the JOY! Debra, CEO!
(photo courtesy of Michelle Zimmerman)
Monday, April 19 2010
Working from home has many benefits. Office attire can be very very casual, pj's are often the choice of many creative people. Hours flexible, short commute time, a walk across the hall most often. Breaks are often to throw in laundry or make a meal or referee kids or pets. Pets are always welcome at the office or studio. My daughter has three cats Milla, Bella and Merlin and when I am in my studio they like to join me. The sunny couch is their spot. I am thinkking I need to hang out a Do Not Disturb sign not for me while working but for the cats naptime. Apparently I am not very exciting company!
This week I am finishing a column for Homearts, writing more instructions for some other projects and getting details together for a big event, more later on that!
My daughter and I are also having a big yard sale this weekend. She will be leaving the nest soon and can use some extra funds. I am looking at downsizing so it is time for things to have a new home. I am being ruthless or trying to be, it is easy letting go of things you don't care for but when you still like something even if it is not useful anymore that is harder to decide. I found setting limits is working, for example only one container for fleece means what doesn't fit in the container has to be sold or donated. My daughter has been selling some larger items on Kijiji which is like Craigs List and as each item leaves I feel lighter. It is time to have less, to be free from stuff making more time for experiences and simplicity. So it is onward with the purge, not holding my breath for any help from our feline family! Follow the JOY! Debra, CEO!
Friday, April 16 2010
IT's Fowl Friday!!! Fran here! Freda well of course she is here too! (Body yes mind a little iffy) This week we have been travelling, not too far though and the transportation has been over bumpy country roads. Freda gets car sick so Debra's solution is just to put her in a ziplock bag (with an air vent). Not sure the SPCA would approve though! We were part of a presentation at the Keswick Ridge Quilt Guild. The ladies were so nice and we had fun! This weekend we are off again to the Scotiabank Relay for Life Fashion Show. No, we were not asked to model even with our great legs but we will be there to support the cause and Debra of course!
At home things are not good. It is spring and the felines in residence have spring fever big time! Their favorite toys to toss around are these brightly colored plastic coiled springs. These springs look suspiciously very much like our legs.
A coincidence we think not or at least I don't. Freda and thinking not a strong combination, I think it is all the dancing! Anyway even though Debra keeps us high on a shelf in her studio those cats keep eyeing us. It is very uncomfortable, we have watched them climb up to the fish bowl on another shelf and drink from his bowl. Beta fish are not too bright either, when the cat takes a drink he swims to the top, one day soon he is going to be a fish slurpy!
Life is never dull around here! Freda and I are going to start wearing leg warmers to keep the cats from eyeing our legs. Even though they have those coil toys everywhere it does not seem to be enough! So these chicken legs are heading for cover, I am thinking pink or purple striped leg warmers with a floral accent, Freda's choice animal print. She wants a new look for her profile photo on Hatch.com. (Watch out roosters)
Have a fowlish fun weekend! Follow the Fowl, Fran & Freda!
Tuesday, April 13 2010
Last night I gave a presentation at the Keswick Ridge Quilt Guild. They were such a wonderful enthusiastic group, even laughed at my jokes! Several of the members I have known for years and it was so nice to see them again. Thank you Mary for inviting me! My youngest daughter Kate went with me, took some pictures, sold my books and fabrics. They had asked for a 30-40 minute presentation, it ended up being longer and then there were questions. Everyone said how much they enjoyed it which was so good to hear. When you speak before a group the goal is always to make it interesting. Honestly I was not feeling at my best last night but once I started talking about my journey in the industry and all the funny "behind the scenes" things that happened along the way, I remembered how much I love what I do. How much I love sharing my passion for creativity and being able to design and teach others with my work. Thanks again ladies!
Thank you also to Meredith, a Creative Homearts Club member for sending me photos of the cute puppy she made for a shower gift from my Sleepy Time Puppy design featured in the magazine. She made a dalmation puppy, just adorable and gave me permission to post her picture.
Today working on my design for the Sizzix blog hop tomorrow! This week's die is the teacup, should be fun! Have a creative day! Follow the JOY! Debra, CEO!
Monday, April 12 2010
When Mondays are met with sunshine and spring time, it begins the week with a zesty flair! This week is a celebration of creativity, connections & caring. Tonight I am off to do a presentation at the Keswick Ridge Quilt Guild, speaking about my design work, books and fabric. Tuesday is a very special day, a Celebration of Life for my dear friend who passed away Friday night. Donna was very talented and I am blessed to have had her as my friend. I have many pieces she created as gifts from painting to quilting she infused every piece with her love. Wednesday is the Sizzix Scoreboards TM Teacup Blog Hop by designer friend Eileen Hull.
Sunday I am taking part in the Scotiabank Relay for Life Fashion Show.
In the new issue of Create & Decorate are spring vegetables I made for Dow using STYROFOAM TM brand foam and National Nonwovens Wool Wisps TM. Needle felting on foam is so easy, the full instructions are available in a download on their website as well. The radish were my favorite to create.
The current issue of Creative Homearts features my column "Make it Green" and my visit to Mrs. Grossman's sticker company. Links to pictures are on my website's front page.
So to a creative week everyone! Embrace creativity, a cause & those close to your heart always! Follow the JOY! Debra, CEO!
Friday, April 09 2010
Fran here for Fowl Friday! Today will be short and sweet, just like us. Although Freda has this illusion that she is some tall chick with long legs. I think she has some body image issues...Debra has a dear friend who is in the final stages of her life. So we just want to say we are thinking of a wonderful woman and her family today. Debra's friend has been part of her life for many years, more than thirty since she was just a young chick herself like moi! (not saying she is old now but you do the math 30+ yikes!) Anyway to life, love & dear friends! Hug a peep today! Follow the Fowl! Fran & Freda!
Wednesday, April 07 2010
Sometimes words come easily and often not. I try always to be authentic and write from the heart. This week work is not where my heart is, it is with a dear friend, one who has been important part of my entire adult life. She has battled long and hard supported by the most loving and wonderful family. She is a woman who has walked always with love in her heart and everyone who knows her has been touched by her deep generous spirit.
We have laughed and cried together, shared many journeys and she has been one of my biggest cheerleaders, always believing in me. She and her husband are my favorite love story, having met at fourteen knowing their future was to be together. She is talented, creative with the most amazing smile making every holiday, special occasion both spectacular and meaningful.
I love her dearly as do many, many others. I am a better person because of her presence in my life. I will miss her and always carry her in my heart. Life is simply a love story. Just live & love. Debra
Monday, April 05 2010
Celebrating Easter Monday with a Chick Parade! Bring on the Chicks and their Peeps! Enjoy! Debra
Friday, April 02 2010
It's Fowl Friday! Freda is busy laying and dyeing her eggs for the annual Easter egg hunt! Presently she seems oblivious to the fact her tail feathers are brightly multi colored as well! Debra's daughters were also in the kitchen making a rainbow cake so it is a color filled world around here! A perfect segue here speaking of color, Debra's partner Deborah Peyton, a talented illustrator and responsible for drawing us so delightfully! The two of them have been busy collaborating on designs for fabric. Here is a sneak peek peeps! Follow the Fowl!
Thursday, April 01 2010
I am a Calendar Gal! well almost...every year Creative Homearts puts out a calendar, my bunny is April! Spring time cuteness is hopping everywhere! Margot Potter designed the cutest Peep bunny necklace for ILovetoCreate. Designer Eileen Hull's Sizzix Scoreboards TM are featured in another blog hop. The talented designers involved are turning out gorgeous projects. I will be part of the next one coming up in two weeks.
Heidi Borchers, "Eco Heidi" has begun a campaign to recycle Starbucks coffee cups into amazing art pieces. She has a video showcasing the wall art created. Thinking it would great for Tim Horton's in Canada! The numbers of cups thrown out everyday is staggering. In Canada we roll up the rim for prizes, thinking roll up the rim with a prize for recycling would work. How cool would it be to see recycled cup wall art in every Starbucks and Tim Hortons! Lets put the heART in ART! Debra, CEO!