Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Thoughtful Tuesdays : What Will I Leave Behind?

Today's excerpt has picked my brain and got my wheels turning. I  hope it does the same for you!

The following is an exact excerpt from the book Listening To Your Inner Voice by Douglas Bloch. I in no way possess any ownership of the following. I am simply sharing the thoughts, expressions and words of an author who has inspired me.

What Will I Leave Behind?
As we grow older and face our own mortality, we begin to ask ourselves, "After I am gone, will my life have made a difference? What will I leave behind?" One way to contribute to future generations is through art. The Latin proverb states, "Ars longa, vita brevis" (life is brief but art endures). Centuries after his death, a writer, painter, or musician still speaks to us through his creations. 
Acts of committed service also open the doors to immortality. As Martin Luther King, Jr., prophetically stated two weeks before his death, "I won't have much money to leave behind. I won't have the finer things in life to leave behind. I just want to leave a committed life behind."
Not everyone is required to make a sacrifice of Dr. King's magnitude, but all contributions have their impact. Whatever we give in loving service is what we leave behind. In the words of Thomas Stanley, "To leave the world a little bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived: This is to have succeeded."


          1. My life has a purpose and a meaning. 
          2. I have found something to live for. 
          3. I dedicate myself to a worthwhile endeavor.
          4. Though my existence is finite, my ability to love is infinite. 
          5. What I give in love shall endure forever. 
          6. Your Own ______________________.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Art Walk Anyone?

I interrupt your day to bring you an important news bulletin.

Fresh from the inbox of my e-mail, information regarding this Saturday, February 25th, 4th Annual Art Walk (That's tomorrow folks!). Local businesses will be sharing their space to display art work and are encouraging you to pop by for a little visit and take in the art from various artists of different ages, backgrounds, and styles. Being a self directed walk, you can leisurely stroll through the various shops at your own pace. Maybe even stopping for a coffee at Flow Lifestyle Boutique, grab a quick and delicious bite to eat at Art of Eating Deli & Catering or Bella's Cafe and Bistro. Why not both?! With all this walking and art admiring, you'll need to keep yourself fueled! lol. More information on the Art Walk can be found at any of the participating locations, which I will be posting below.

The following is a copy of all the locations where you can  enjoy some fabulous works of art and check out locally owned businesses. It has been suggested that this walk take place between the hours of 10am until 2pm though it is up to you when you decided to venture out. It is also noted that not all locations may be open given it is a weekend, however the art may be in display for an extended period of time. 

YMCA‐92 Church St, Megan Gould & Rene Cole
Flesh Impressions‐86 Church St, Rozlind Anderson‐Pringle
Pages & Stitches‐82 Church St, Don Russell
Art of Eating Deli– 82 Church St, Diana Vertis McIsaac & Ginny Chapman
Deanne Fitzpatrick’s Rug Hooking Studio‐33 Church St, Display features recent work by Deanne Fitzpatrick
Mansour’s Menswear‐27 Church St, A number of works from the private collection of Robert Mansour
Damaris Spa & Wellness Centre‐16 Church St, Kathy Estabrooks
Pugsley’s Pharmacy‐63 Victoria St, Judy Arkell
Inglis Jewellers‐91 Victoria St, Gil Collicott
Focal Point‐93 Victoria St, Focal Point hosts works by a number of fabulous local artists
Gallery 8‐8 Havelock St., Bert Van Leeuwen
Royal LePage‐102 Victoria St, Bob Morouney
Shear Impressions‐111 Victoria St, Donna Farrell
Amherst Music‐113 Victoria St, Patrick McWade
McCully Market‐115 Victoria St, McCully Market features work by a number of local artists
Bella’s CafĂ©‐117 Victoria St, Bella’s is featuring a show called “Arist First...Illness Second” in February
Flow Boutique‐127 Victoria St, Susan Black
Dayles Department Store‐129 Victoria St, Work of ARHS Students
Carters Cresting‐beside Dayles parking lot, Catherine Bussiere and Isaac Fresia
Tantramar Community Radio (on Acadian is the same building as Carters), John Warner
Town Hall– 5 Ratchford St, A celebration of work by local African Nova Scotian artists is up in February
Cumberland County Museum & Archives‐150 Church St, Display of work by Darlene Strong

Special thanks to Stephanie from Flow Lifestyle Boutique and to Andrew, the Arts Culture and Heritage Coordinator at the Town Hall for relaying this information on to me. If anyone would like to add their business website, please feel free to contact me. I'm hoping this chest and head cold I have clears up in time for the stroll tomorrow. If not I'll be bundling up with a few extra layers of Vicks vapor rub, so if you don't see me, you'll definitely smell me! Haha. 

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Artist Spotlight

At the start of February I wrote a blog about an art show I am involved with that is currently on display at Bella's Cafe and Bistro which is promoting mental health awareness. Today I want to share with you some of the works and biography's of 2 of the artists who have also contributed to this show. If you live in the area, you still have time to drop down to Bella's and enjoy some fabulous art with some delicious food! 

*Again, my apologies for the quality of the pictures. I've tried my best to edit what I could. Come on new camera!!! haha.

Art Show Description. Slightly blurry.

Bradley W. Rogers has been creating art for 40 years in various mediums. Mr. Rogers has been a mental health consumer for some time. Mr. Rogers was born and lives in Oxford, NS and has been a volunteer with Communities in Bloom and with the Food Bank in Oxford.

Gloria Winnifred Brown is a local beginner artist who has been painting for about a year. She paints for fun in her spare time. She enjoys working with different colours and designs and experimenting with different techniques. Painting is very peaceful and contemplative. She likes to do modern designs, flowers, finds from the earth and mother nature. Experimenting with new ways of drawing and painting art is interesting.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Thoughtful Tuesdays : Life Is for Giving

Morning came too soon for me today. I'm going to be busy busy busy, so let's dive right into today's post for Thoughtful Tuesday!

The following is an exact excerpt from the book Listening To Your Inner Voice by Douglas Bloch. I in no way possess any ownership of the following. I am simply sharing the thoughts, expressions and words of an author who has inspired me.

Life Is for Giving

When Albert Schweitzer said, "The only ones of you who will be truly happy are those who have found and learned how to serve," he was stating the ancient truth - that the meaning of life lies in the giving. The quality of your life is in direct proportion to your willingness to give. 
In the classic movie, Its a Wonderful Life, George Bailey discovered this truth. Though he had many opportunities to pursue his ambitions elsewhere, George remained in his community and dedicated himself to providing affordable housing to its members. When his guardian angel showed him what the town would be life if he had never been born, Bailey realized how much of a difference his giving had made.
George also discovered another secret - that what you give is what you receive. Whatever you give out comes back to you. When you extend yourself to nurture the spiritual growth of another, you nurture your own growth. Although his material possessions were modest, George Bailey toasted to the "richest" (i.e., the most beloved) man in town by the people of Bedford Falls. Later he remarked, "No man can be poor as long as he has friends."
Bailey gave himself for the joy of giving, and joy is what he recieved. By following this path, we, too, can be blessed.  


1. Freely I give; freely I receive.
2. I give for its own sake, because it feels right in my heart.
          3. Giving is its own reward. 

          4. As I love well, I live well. 

          5. All that I give, I give to myself. 

          6. Your Own ____________________.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Evening of Art (and great success!)

These wonderful women made fantastic dates for an Evening of Art, Saturday night. The amount of fun we had supporting the Autumn House is immeasurable! I haven't heard the results of the evening, but I can tell you this much, the incredible outreach of support from the community and surrounding area was something to be admired. 

The entrance was lined with the donated art work that would later be auctioned off. As we strolled to the end of the 'hallway of art', we found tables filled with donations for the silent auction. Making our way into the main room where the live auction would be held, we discovered the yummy treats served by Art of Eating Deli & Catering along with the paintings that would be going as door prizes. So much art to take in! I loved it! The seats filled quickly as we anticipated the start of the live auction. Dean Truman impressed the socks right clean off me when he started the bidding as the auctioneer for the evening. I have no idea how that man talks so fast! My only exposure to live auctions is from the tv show 'Storage Wars' haha, so when Dave started going, I felt slightly overwhelmed. However his ability to engage the audience and the response from the crowd made it so exciting. When it came time for my piece to be auctioned, I felt my stomach drop. I'm not going to lie, I was so scared the audience would not be receptive to it. The bidding began and before I knew it, the winning bid was $200! SOLD! hehe. How neat (and what a MEGA relief! I did a happy dance inside).

I can't express how powerful it felt to see so many people attend the event, the amount of art work that was donated (there was 44 pieces for the live auction, I'm not quite sure how many for the door prizes), the 62 different businesses and individuals who made donations for the silent auction, the volunteers who set aside a few hours all for such a deserving cause! It warms my heart to see so many generous souls. I can't wait for next years auction!

On my Facebook page, Sadie Jane Collection  you can find pictures from the event. I'm pretty sure it's accessible even if you do not have a FB account. (If not let me know in the comments below and I'll post them here) Sadly not all of my pictures turned out too well (again blame my poopy camera, working on upgrades!!) so at this point, I'd like to take a few lines to give credit to all the artists who contributed!

Ian Fancey                         Don Russell                                                         Feron Young
Charlotte Prime                  Ted Evans                                                           Colin McCabe
Meagan Lewis                    Summer Shore Women's Luncheon Group          Bert van Leeuwen
Jill Bentley                          Nicole Allen                                                        Pat Thomas
Mark Boon                        Darlene Strong                                                    Elaine Amyot   
Virginia Chapman               Emily Evans                                                        Stephen Claxton-Oldfield
Wendy Baumann                Barbara Yorston                                                 Judith Arkell
George Griffin                    Derrick Currie                                                     Robert Lyon 
Edna Boon                        Gloria King                                                          Marilyn Cook
Ruth Brown                       Gil Collicott                                                         Laurill Hamilton
Donna Farrell                     Darlene Hotchkis
Deanne Fitzpatrick             Linda J. Purdy

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Evening of Art - sneak peak!

Saturday is quickly approaching and I finally have the finishing touches on the two paintings I have been working on for my donation. I have felt a lot of (self induced) pressure with these two paintings, so to feel as though I have reached a point where I can say "c'est fini!" (my french is limited, I hope that is correct) and walk away from the paintings feels wonderful!

Appropriately timed with Family Violence Prevention Week this event will be showcasing local artwork and serving delicious food from a local deli all while raising money and awareness for the local women's shelter. It will be a very powerful night, one I'm so fortunate enough to attend.

Here is a peak at the two paintings I will be contributing to this cause. The first, 'After the Storm' will be for the auction, and the second, 'Creating Harmony' will be for the draw!

*Note: I took these pictures using my cell phone. In person, the colours are more vibrant, and there are some colours that aren't even picked up from the camera on the phone. Also for some reason, her hair seems blotchy...it is solid black in the original painting*

After the Storm
Acrylic and Structure Gel on Canvas
valued at $250

Creating Harmony
Acrylic and Crackle Paste on Canvas
valued at $60

My Colourful Valentine

I must admit, I was pretty spoiled yesterday for Valentine's Day! First, Beth took me out to dinner with our little tater tot Valentine. He is just too precious. Three weeks shy of his second birthday, he is one smart cookie. As we sat waiting for our food, he points to a decoration of Cupid holding a heart. "What's that?" he asks. "That's a Valentine" we reply. Well that was his new word for the rest of the day. For such a little man, I was blown away at him saying such a big word! He continued to entertain us singing his ABC's, his 'Elmo and Ernie song' and "C is for Cookie". What a little gem he is!

We return to the homestead with just enough time to make a spot of tea and heat up the cave the little. Last night, for the first time ever I had a very special guest alongside me in the Spidey Cave. She also happened to be the BEST Valentine's date ever!! This young, talented and incredibly sweet artist spent a few hours in the cave with me, exploring the world of acrylics. I had so much fun!! First we explored the tonal scale, and then applied it to a painting of a ball to show shadows and highlights. Then we created our very own colour wheel by mixing our primary colours (that's red, yellow and blue), to create secondary and tertiary colours!  With our new colour wheel handy we explored the idea of complimentary colours and referenced Andy Warhol's famous pop art as examples. For the first time ever, this young artist experienced the wonderful feeling of painting on canvas. She created her very own pop art painting, and the itch to keep going only grew stronger. The old saying is true, 'Time flies by when you're having fun'. Before we knew it it, it was way past her bedtime, and it was a school night! How lucky were we to stay up late on a school night to make art?! Another date has been set, we both are looking forward to it! 

Here's a couple of pictures from last night:

Hope you all had a wonderful Valentine's Day! 

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Thoughtful Tuesdays : Not By Bread Alone

Happy Valentine's Day!! Once again, I am amused at the timing of  'Thoughtful Tuesdays' and where I am in my life journey. Today is a holiday, where like many others, the materialistic and commercialized pressures can take away from the purity and sincerity of the actual day. It can be challenging to step away from social pressures and place your wallet in safe keeping, but it sure does feel good! I kept my debit card hidden for this 'Hallmark' occasion and busted out some construction paper, glue sticks, and creativity instead. It doesn't matter if you are in a relationship or single, love makes the worlds go around.  As a very dear friend  of mine posted on her Facebook today, "Hippie Valentine's Day. Be kind to one another!"

The following is an exact excerpt from the book Listening To Your Inner Voice by Douglas Bloch. I in no way possess any ownership of the following. I am simply sharing the thoughts, expressions and words of an author who has inspired me.

Not By Bread Alone

The other day I was feeling off center, and so I took a walk around the block to lift my spirits. As I passed one of my neighbor's homes, I spotted a luxury car and began to imagine my pleasure at owning and driving such a vehicle. Suddenly, a still small voice whispered from within, "You can't fill a spiritual void with a physical object. Because you are a spiritual being living in a material world, your deeper needs for love and connectedness can never be satisfied in purely material terms."
And yet we climb the ladder of material success only to discover that it is leaning against the wrong wall. It is clear that human beings need a certain amount of food, clothing, shelter, and comfort to meet their physical needs. But anything beyond that is not truly essential for inner contentment. As the philosopher Marcus Aurelius said, "Very little is needed to make a happy life."
In Scripture we read "Man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of  the mouth of God." Ask yourself, "What are my spiritual and emotional needs, and what steps am I taking to address them?" As you begin to feed and nourish yourself with spiritual food, your soul's hunger will be filled. There is no deeper satisfaction than this.  

1. I nourish my soul with what it needs.
2. I know what is truly important in my life. 
          3. The love of my friends and family defines my true richness.

          4. My physical needs are more than met, and I give thanks for this. 

          5. I am peaceful and content at the deep level of my being. 

          6. Your Own ________________________.

And I'll send all my lovin' to YOU!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Thoughtful Tuesdays : Finding Your Purpose

So yesterday I became lost in my paints down in the Spidey Cave. I was so focused on getting these paintings done for the upcoming art show Feb 18th, to fundraiser money for the Autumn House (a local transition house), that I completely forgot it was Thoughtful Tuesday! 

Yesterday/today's excerpt from the book, "Listening To Your Inner Voice" speaks volumes to me. I hope it will resonate with you as well.

The following is an exact excerpt from the book Listening To Your Inner Voice by Douglas Bloch. I in no way possess any ownership of the following. I am simply sharing the thoughts, expressions and words of an author who has inspired me.

Finding Your Purpose

Everyone has a dream. Everyone has a purpose or mission, something specific he is called to do. You are on this earth for a reason. Although you can temporarily hide from yourself, you can never lose your connection to your purpose. It is always with you, beckoning to be uncovered. You just need to listen and let it speak to you. 
When you do decide to follow your dream, be prepared for resistance. The old beliefs and messages from the past that say it cannot be done will come rushing to the surface. How will you respond to these voices of fear and doubt? Will you allow them to immobilize you? Or will you tell them who is in charge and move forward in spite of your fears?
Despite the objections if everyone around her, Augusta pursued her dream of becoming an Olympic athlete. At first her series of disappointing performances seemed to confirm the predictions of her family and friends. But then she won a race. The improvement continued until a number of first-place finishes gave her a spot on the Olympic team. 
          No matter what the obstacles,  choose to be true to your purpose
          and let it guide and direct your way. Your destiny is beckoning you.
          It is time to heed the call. (page 38)


         1. I am aligned with my higher purpose.
         2. I am in touch with my destiny. 
         3. I hear my inner voice and heed the call.
         4. I am living a life of purpose and passion. 
         5. I follow my dreams and make them a reality. 
         6. Your Own _________________. 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

NEDA Month

February is filled with love. Not just because Valentine's happens to fall on the 14th. It is a month filled with awareness for a particular cause that I hold close to my heart. In fact, this cause is so important to me, that I am willing to face a new challenge in an attempt to raise more awareness. I'm aware of how broad my audience here can be. I am already blown away by the number of viewers. With this knowledge I can feel a new sense of fear being created, in turn creating my new challenge. I am about to disclose a very personal story with you, my unknown readers. I have chosen to share this story with you in hopes that it may help you, someone in your life, or just help spread a message to you and those around you. My inner advocate needs to be heard. 

I was in college and I thought I had found my niche. I was volunteering, organizing events, and studying one of my passions in hopes to create a career. Then I stumbled. I lost friends, I lost my education, I lost relationships with people I cared for. I lost weight, a lot of weight, I lost control of my thoughts. I lost everything. I had been battling an illness for over 10 years and finally was diagnosed after I hit my rock bottom. I have Anorexia Nervosa. It is an eating disorder. But I didn't quite fit into just that category according to DSM-IV. I was given a second 'label'. Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified, also referred to as EDNOS. As I sank further and further into my eating disorders, I could not see what others were so worried about. I could not see how sick I truly was. What I saw was an incredibly distorted image. 

Finally there came a point where I had nothing left to lose but life itself. I admitted myself to an out of province treatment facility in hopes to recover from this. This would be my second attempt at this program. The first time, I was not ready to get better. I somehow believed I 'needed' my eating disorders. It gave me a sense of identity, control. It gave me things I felt I could not give myself. Upon my second admission into the program, I gave it my all. I was ready to leave this nightmare behind and start living. I soaked up every singly ounce of recovery information, tool and skills I could. I challenged my distorted thinking with facts. I gave myself permission to ask for help when I need it. I left everything I knew behind and for four months I focused on healing. 

It has now been almost two years since I graduated from the Eating Disorders Recovery program. Though I have had a few slips along the way, I am doing well. I still struggle with negative and distorted thoughts and feelings, but I make sure my voice is stronger than "Ed's" (this is a name we place on our eating disorders to separate us from the disorder, it's a very effective method). When I first began my recovery journey, it was just myself. Along the way I have made incredible friends, and my support team has grown and become very strong. Their continual belief in me helps me through the harder days, and makes the great days so much more enjoyable. 

For those of you who are reading this who are suffering, or know someone who is suffering from an eating disorder, please hear me...Recovery IS Possible!! I never in a million years believed that when I heard it from others. I thought they were lying, or never had it as bad as me. But that was the eating disorder talking! It wanted me to believe I needed it. Thankfully I found a way a to be stronger than ED and you can too! You have to work very hard to not only recover from an eating disorder, but to maintain it as well. There were times when I felt all that hard work wasn't paying off, or worth the pain I felt inside, I had never been so wrong. I stuck to my recovery and now, I feel free. The energy I spent fueling my eating disorder is now focused on making more positives. Instead of leaning on the eating disorders for a sense of identity, control and false love, I am now learning how to offer these things to myself.

February is National Eating Disorder Awareness Month. Certain weeks may focus on specific themes, but they all bring light to this life threatening disorder.You can visit the following sites to learn more information on eating disorders, how to bring awareness to our family, loved ones, friends, or your community. We do not have to suffer along. We do not have to be ashamed. Most importantly, hold on to hope, and know that you are stronger than ED may try to make you think you are.



Thursday, February 2, 2012

The Valentine's Day Survival Guide

Sadie Jane Collection

The Valentine's Day Survival Guide

I have had more than my share of solo Valentine's Days. I've also been in relationships where Valentine's Day was somehow forgotten, or experienced the 'Oh $#!% it's Valentine's Day'...boyfriend runs out and returns a few hours later with a plastic bag of random holiday related purchases, pickings from the bottom of the love day inventory. Nothing makes you feel more loved than that! haha. So if you are holding your own this holiday , I have some ideas that might help fill your heart with warm goodness and leave the disappointment on the doorstep!

With no silly date to impress, you can decide if you want to be thrifty this Valentine's or go all out! Prepare your absolute favorite meal at home, or be thrifty and raid your cupboards for existing ingredients you won't have to buy. Recipe Key will help you create a meal based on the food you already have on hand! Better yet, order in! Let some one else do the cooking for you! Just don't forget to add dessert to that order!

While you wait for your food to cook, bake, or arrive, crank up your favorite feel good music playlist and dance! Seriously, like no one is watching. You have no idea how much fun you are missing out on until you hold a hairbrush in one hand and just give 'er! (For some this might be a good time to close the blinds or curtains hehe)

So your food is ready, light some candles and have a romantic dinner with your number 1! (pst...That's YOU in case you were wondering). Not so much a fan of sitting at the table in silence while you eat? Then pop in your favorite comedy movie (unless you're in the mood to watch a tear jerker...or you likes them scary movies! ) and chow down.

With no one else to spend money on, why not buy yourself a little present? Have it wrapped at the store, so after dinner you have a little something to open. Not into spending money on yourself, at all? That's ok, why not check out a local organization you support that is in need of some love. Play cupid and instead of love arrows, send a love donation to them instead. 

Not feeling the being alone on Valentine's Day? That's cool too. Why not ring up your single ladies (or single men) and invite them over for a little singles party? Just make sure your musical selection is filled with upbeat tunes, and no mushy crap! haha. 

Want to go out? Why not warm the hearts of others and volunteer? I'm sure there are a few community organizations that could use your loving! Think retirement homes, hospitals, animal shelters, etc. You could bring board games, bring a tray of snacks, or special treats for our furry or feathered amigos. 

These are just a few ideas I thought of to help you survive Feb. 14. For more great ideas, check out 20 Valentine's Day Ideas for Fabulous Singles

(Etsy : JulieAnnArt)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Love is in the Air

14 days until Valentine's folks! Now I could very easily get on a rant about how Valentine's Day is a highly commercialized holiday with extreme pressure and marketing aimed at spending money to prove our love, and how the socioeconomic status of a couple tends to be compromised for the sake of unnecessary materialistic purchases. I could also rant about the importance of self love and independence and how this holiday that displays unrealistic standards for expressing love for others and the need to be paired up is ridiculous.

But I won't.

Instead, I'm going to embrace this holiday filled with love. I am going to love and be loved. I am also going to share some pretty awesome Valentine themed DIY projects with you to help spread the love this February 14th. For those of you playing the solo role, no worries, I have some ideas for you too!

Start your Valentine's with a 'heart-y' breakfast. hehe. Learn how to make heart shaped hard boiled eggs over on annathered. It looks super easy to do, and very thrifty. You could even make heart shaped toast with strawberry jam, or heart shaped pancakes!

Love is in the air with these colourful decorative hearts. Kids can help out to, as long as they have adult supervision with the iron, or have a grown up do the ironing for them, depending on their age. Over at skiptomylou  you can find out how to make these crayon shaving hearts. 

Ok so this is where you can make sure a certain card company or two won't pocket your money this Valentine's Day. Learn how to make your own pop up card at RobertSabuda , just scroll down towards the bottom for this pattern.

How precious is this Valentine's Day tree? You could create hearts out of construction paper, or any paper around the house really, with little love notes on the back. Take a stroll through the park to find a tree branch, you could paint it, or just leave it natural. I really love this idea from skiptomylou .

Get ready to set the atmosphere at the dinner table tonight. This pretty and easy to make. Find some scrap lace (check out local thrift stores) or paper doilies and using a mixture of 1/3 water 2/3 white school glue, 'paint' the lace/doily onto the glass votive. Allow enough time for this to dry and set (perhaps you could do this the night before).

When the moon hits your eye like a heart shaped pizza pie...that's amore! Personally when it comes to cooking, I don't think there is any other meal more fun to make than a pizza! And one 'decorated' with hearts is even better. If you are a vegetarian, or you are like me and just don't like meat on your pizza, you could make heart shaped tomatoes to replace the pepperoni. (Of course you can use your imagination and turn any topping into a heart, or form heart shapes with peppers, mushrooms etc)

Who doesn't love ice cream sandwiches? These heart shaped, chocolate and strawberry treats are too tempting to resist! Mint Design Blog  has the 'scoop' on how to make this cute love dessert (A heart shaped pizza followed by this love filled dessert? Sounds like a great feast for Valentine's Day!)

Create your own love fortunes by making homemade fortune cookies! Alphamom has a recipe if you want to use your baking skills! All of the ingredients may be in your cupboards already which is very wallet friendly. If you don't have access to a printer, cut up some paper and write your own fortunes!

Not so keen on baking? Why not get crafty and make a toy fortune cookie?

Martha Stewart has a step by step tutorial on how to create felt fortune cookies. I like how she fills them with chocolate kisses so you can still indulge your sweet tooth!

I'm a HUGE fan of making tents so when I saw this, I knew I had to make it. Even when Valentine's is long gone, I may have to keep this little nest idea for rainy days and a good book. I found this love tent over at Design Sponge.

Head on down to the beach and find some small, flat rocks. (If you don't live near a beach, just try to find some small rocks, or pebbles). You only need a handful. Then pop over to Craftbits and learn how to make wish stones. You could bring these into your love tent and make wishes with your significant other. Or you could make a love nest for yourself and make some wishes just for you!

Ok, so you don't have kids, or a significant other to share this with.  Maybe you're pretty upset because of this and now you don't even want to do these things for you. Well..fret not my loved ones! Tomorrow, I'll be posting a Valentine's Survival Guide, and trust me, it's going to be fun!

Bella's Art Show

Good Morning!
This post will be super short, I have to dart out the door, but I did promise photos! Here it is,

My first art show of 2012, at Bella's Cafe and Bistro. The show is intended to raise awareness towards mental health. This is a collection of my first paintings of 2012 with a special guest appearance from my last painting of 2011.

*Note: colours and textures in these paintings may vary from actual painting. My camera isn't living up to it's fullest potential these days, makes me sad.

These Strings Bring Wisdom
Acrylic on Canvas

Optimistic Puppet

Acrylic on Canvas

New Growth
Acrylic on Canvas

Acrylic on Canvas
(picture on the left is a close up of the texture in the flower)

Beautiful Spirit
Acrylic on Canvas

I have to run, busy busy morning! Create yourself a great day folks!