Monday, January 31, 2011

My Favorite Things

Katherine Center talks about making a Comfort List based on a character in her book, Get Lucky. Instead of a comfort list I thought I would make a favorite things list.

1)  Perusing Etsy for fabulous handmades.
2)  Homemade Lavender aromatherapy spray.
3)  Inspiring artists blogs.
4)  Taking e-courses.
5)  Stampington & Company mags.
6)  Reading books on my ipod Touch
7)  Artist Dates (The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron)
8)  A matinee movie with a friend. This weekend I saw No Strings Attached. It was good but I'd wait for DVD if you're on the fence about this one.
9)  Cupcakes!!! (My local cupcake shop - Sugar Crave)
10) Planning a trip to Kripalu with a friend.

What are some of your favorite things?

P.S. I took the flower picture this past weekend. It was a beautiful spring-like day yet I was still shocked to see flowers blooming. We've had one cold winter for Florida and this weekend was a nice break from it, albeit a tease. To my Northern friends, I wish you warmth as your cold weather isn't going to let up for a while. Have a good week all!

E-course Excitement

Today I'm excited to begin not one but two e-courses today!

The first is THIS Moment with Mindy Tsonas of Wish Studio and Under a Pink Sky. This is a 5-week course which focuses on, "live the life of your dreams by loving the life you have." 

The second is Get Your Paint On with Mati McDonough and Lisa Congdon. This is a 5-week painting class with inspiration and assignments in a safe environment. 

I hope you can join me!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Weekend Musings

I experienced Afternoon Tea at our local British Tea Room, Willows on Saturday.
They brought this lovely spread and it was all so delicious!
There was a great assortment of teas to choose from. My choice was the Darjeeling tea. What a great experience! Enjoy the remainder of your weekend!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Recently Read Books

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In a recent post, I told you how much I love to read so I thought I would share my book list with you of recently read titles.

Recently Read
The Not So Big Life by Sarah Susanka
Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang by Chelsea Handler
Tales from the Yoga Studio by Rain Mitchell
Such a Pretty Face by Cathy Lamb
Learning to Breathe by Alison Wright
A Homemade Life by Molly Wizenberg
Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks
The Long Road Home by Mary Alice Monroe
Living a Charmed Life by Victoria Moran
Hand Wash Cold by Karen Maezen Miller
168 Hours by Laura Vanderkam
Blogging for Bliss by Tara Frey
Mindfulness Yoga by Frank Jude Boccio
From Here to Nirvana by Anne Cushman
Plus countless artsy-type books like Taking Flight by Kelly Rae Roberts, Journal Bliss by Violette, and Inner Excavations by Liz Lamoreux

On the Horizon to Read
Art at the Speed of Life by Pam Carriker (Just got it!!!)
The Happy Book by Rachel Kempster/Meg Ledger
The Artist Within by Whitney Ferre
Love Walked In by Marisa de los Santos

What are some books you've read recently?

Thursday, January 27, 2011

On the Web

photo credit
 Christen Olivarez shared the fabulous Create Mixed Media website that offers Stitched Up, a *free* downloadable mixed media project ebook. It includes six projects each with a bit of stitching involved. I can barely sew but this is beautiful and you may be interested.

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Goddess Leonie shared a link from the adorable Cassie of House of Owls on her post, 50 Ways to Woo Your Muse. Her list is funny and crafty. Number 25 was one of my favorites:
Find a box of crayons, and pick out a few with less-than-inventive names. Give those colors better names. Cheese Doodle Fingers Orange. My Crush Definitely Saw Me Naked Pink. Mallard Duck’s Shiny Feather Teal. Take a thin Sharpie & scribble in their new names.
I hope you're having a wonderful week. I'll be back tomorrow with a list of recently read books.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wishcasting Wednesday: What do you wish to enjoy?

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Jamie Ridler posted this prompt for today's Wishcasting Wednesday:

What do you wish to enjoy?

I wish to enjoy every aspect of my life. Wow, that sounds like a big bite to chew! We tend to place emphasis on the things we really enjoy like spending time with family, creating art, writing, etc. while we have a tendency to just breeze through the mundane tasks like housecleaning and checking email. What if we mindfully tackled each of these tasks and found a way to enjoy them or at the very least be present while doing them? What a difference it would make in your life! If cleaning house is a chore, why not put on some funky music and dance to the beat as you scrub the sink? Why not say a silent thank you for each email you open thanking that person for thinking of you today? 

What do you wish to enjoy?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

10 Things You Don't Know About Me

Earlier today, Christy Tomlinson posted a list of ten things you may not know about her. Christy's openness and honesty inspired me to put myself out there too.

10 Things You Don't Know About Me
Donovan, Dec 2010
1.  My family consists of my 10-year old son Donovan, two pound puppies Olivia and Bella, and an annoyingly, needy cat named Tigger. Also a handful of fish and two dwarf frogs.

Bella (This is an older pic. She's much larger now.)
Olivia ("Olive")
 2.  I tend to be a loner. That's not to say that I don't have friends or like to spend time with others. It's just that I like to spend a lot of time alone exploring my interests.

3.  My biggest fears, besides failure, are snakes and rollercoasters. I live in snake-ridden Florida so I've had to face that fear far too many times. My rollercoaster fear, I've tried to get past for the sake on my son who is fearless but they still frighten me and I find no fun in them in the least bit.

4.  Since Christy listed a word she commonly misspells, I'll tell you mine - probably. The only reason it's spelled correctly here is the blessing of spell-check.

5.  I like most types of music except rap. Lately I've been into folksy-type music like Schuyler Fisk. I'll soon post a music list for you to check out.

6.  I love, love, love to read. I'm currently using an e-reader on my ipod Touch. Even as a child my nose was always stuck in a book. Another future post, a book list.
Amanda in India, Nov 2010
7.  This past year I was able to visit the #1 item on my bucket list - Pray in India. I am so very thankful to have been able to make the trek to explore the place that has held my heart for so long.

8.  I love to travel and plan to make two more trips this year if vacation time and money allows. The first is a getaway with a girlfriend to Kripalu which we've said for years that we would do. The second is to my first art retreat. I'm still debating on which one but it's a HUGE step for me to take that first brave leap out of my comfort zone to meet like-minded artists in the art community.

9.  I'm mostly an "in the closet" artist. Most people who know or work with me have absolutely no idea what I spend so much time on except for those in my close, personal circle. This blog was my first step in "outing" myself. I guess this is mostly because of my insecurity in my own talents. I'm trying to remind myself that we all have to start somewhere and that I need to be true to myself.

10.  My favorite mind-numbing activity to veg out is to watch Family Guy marathons. It's terrible but I just love the show and it's generally how I spend my Monday nights thanks to TBS and Cartoon Network.

Thanks for tuning in to my ramblings. Have a great night!

What's your story?

photo credit Amanda J. St.Clair

Not only is your story worth telling, but it can be told in words so painstakingly eloquent that it becomes a song. ~Gloria Naylor

I recently came across this quote on Kind Over Matter and just had to share it with you. Isn't that absolutely beautiful?! We ALL have a story to tell. Tell yours!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Weekend Musings

So here's what I worked on this weekend:
I worked on two paintings plus my usual weekend household requirements; house cleaning, laundry, etc. Boo!
Enjoy the last little bit of you weekend!

Friday, January 21, 2011

On the web...

Your word of the year by Christine Kane

While perusing the web yesterday I came across this *free* download while on the sweet Heart Piercing Life blog, Word-of-the-Year Discovery Tool from Christine Kane. It's a divine little worksheet that helps you hone in on your word of the year (I talk about mine here) and how to embrace it as part of your daily life. I can't wait to get started on mine tonight! Happy Friday!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Keep calm and carry on!

I just had to share this lovely with you.  Go to M+D for a free (yes, I said free!!!) Keep calm and carry on desktop wallpaper. There's multiple colors to choose from. Today felt like a calming pink day!

Monday, January 17, 2011


"At the center of non-violence stands the principle of love."  ~Martin Luther King, Jr.


"Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace and gratitude."  ~Denis Waitley

Thursday, January 13, 2011

What word chose you?

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With it being a brand new year there is much talk around the web about choosing a word to define your year. In a sense, you are setting an intention, a wish, of what you want to project for the year ahead. I’ve been so inspired by the various words chosen such as fearless, dream, wish, trust, grow, and connect. I thought so greatly about what my word for this year would be and started thinking “abundance” would be a great word to choose. Little did I know that my word had already chosen me. It was just waiting for ME to realize it! 

It did not merely whisper to me but practically screamed, “Open!!!!” Of course! “Open” is my word. It’s so simplistic yet has countless layers to it. Just like the layers of my life – personal, professional, creative, spiritual, etc. It certainly fits the intention I wish to release to the universe this year. I wish to be open to new opportunities, new dreams, and new adventures. I wish to be open to all the extraordinary gifts that may come my way as I allow myself to be receptive.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I AM a winner!!!

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What a wonderful Wednesday! I just found out that I'm a winner of a brand new Curly Girl Organic Tee with these super cute quotes! It must be my lucky month(s) because I was thrilled to win Curly Girl Holiday Napkins in December. Thanks Leigh and the lovely ladies at Curly Girl!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Start from now

photo credit Amanda J. St.Clair

"Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending."  ~Anonymous

Just Pre-ordered!

I'm so excited! I just pre-ordered a signed copy of Pam Carriker's upcoming book Art at the Speed of Life! To get your copy:

I hope your week has started off wonderfully!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

My favorite things (cont.)

6.  Curly Girl Design (

The quote that I sometimes feel is my mantra comes courtesy of Curly Girl, "I'm fairly certain that given a cape and a nice tiara, I could save the world." So could you!

My favorite things

photo credit Amanda J. St.Clair

Here are a few of my favorite things:
  1. Laundry done, house clean, and still some time in the weekend to relax.
  2. Bath & Body Works Stress Relief aromatherapy (Eucalyptus Spearmint)
  3. Saturday afternoon at the movies.
  4. Hours passing by while creating art. Where does the time go? :-)
  5. Opening the windows to let fresh air in
I hope you had a wonderful weekend!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Is the universe whispering to you?

"That whisper you keep hearing is the universe trying to get your attention."  ~ Oprah Winfrey
I've heard the universe whispering to me for quite some time but I shut it out. Sometimes I would question myself, "Really? You think YOU are an artist?" and proceed to laugh it off. One day I chose not to respond negatively and decided to see what I was made of. So here I am, exploring my creativity and listening to the whispers. I have no idea where it will take me but I am enjoying myself during this learning process.