Happy New Year!

I'm back! I have been waiting to get some new photos that I would be excited about to use on my blog. My camera is not working and I am in the market for a new one, was waiting for the sales!
So now once that happens, I will be up and running again with great new pics of all that goes on in my 24/7 life!

We have had an interesting month with the weather here in Illinois. Winter had arrived with a big snow storm dumping about 18" of snow on us and then left again with temps in the 50's and rain storms. Is this global warming? Not sure I can handle it. The mini cooper I drive has a hard time in the big snows. Maybe the west coast is calling? 

Christmas has now come and gone again. Hard to believe it is all over. Now we look forward to another New Year and all it holds.

Wishing everyone the best 2009 and hope it brings great things your way.


Summer Festivals come to an End

The weather was great! Thanks to all who came by and visited again this year. I always look forward to catching up with everyone that I have not seen in awhile. I also enjoyed meeting and chatting with all the people that stopped by that I did not know. I hope everyone is enjoying their jewelry purchases and looking forward to finding a great new fall wardrobe to go with them, right?!

I could not of done it this year again without the help of my friends, who always keep me company and calm during set up and take down. Thanks to Dawn, Dixie & Kathryn, and of course Olivia and Mike. You all are the BEST! Missed Sue this year who has been my right arm for many an art show.

My friend Dawn and I have collaborated on some new custom necklaces with your pictures in them (above are a few examples). If interested in hearing more on them drop me an email or conversation me through my etsy web site.
We are excited about the great gift giving possibilities that these will bring for the holidays. Pictures of your kids, grandkids, favorite vacation shots, pets, weddings, babies, etc.

Now that school is starting it is bittersweet to say good bye to summer. How fast it went again.
I look forward to fall and all that it brings: color changes, cool crisp days (sweater weather), apple picking, homecoming football games & dances, bonfires, crocks of chili, walks in the woods, halloween and so much more. So embrace the end of summer and look forward to the joys of the coming season. Life moves fast, enjoy every day!

For a feel good moment & probably a little cry, listen to this:


Summer Art Festivals

I am busy preparing for this summers Art Festivals.
I have a lot of hand forged metals, shadowboxes and wire worked pieces that I am really excited about! I am praying for nice weather this summer with no surprise THUNDERSTORMS!

Here are the dates:
Libertyville Art Festival
Libertyville, IL
August 2 & 3
Saturday 10-6 Sunday 12-4

Long Grove Art Festival
Long Grove, IL
August 16 & 17
Saturday 10-5 Sunday 10-5

I hope to see you at one or both of the shows!

Girls Names on Mars!!!

This image, released on Memorial Day, May 26, 2008, shows the American flag and a mini-DVD on the Phoenix's deck, which is about 3 ft. above the Martian surface. The mini-DVD from the Planetary Society contains a message to future Martian explorers, science fiction stories and art inspired by the Red Planet, and the names of more than a quarter million earthlings. Grandpa put the names of all his young earthlings (grandchildren) on the DVD. So we will be expecting messages from martians any day now. How cool is that!!!



Wear it Proudly...MaMa

Mom's, let them know how you feel!
Some fun new creations that I felt a need to make :-)

And most of all, remember:

I wear this one to remind myself and the girls daily!


Spring Break

What a Vacation...
We saw more on this vacation then we ever imagined.
Flying into LA to rent a car and drive to Las Vegas for a few days.
Airline benefits in March, during spring break...a little hard to get places!
After arriving in Las Vegas we drove to the Grand Canyon. WOW! What a beautiful site. The only thing that worried me was the fact that there were no guard rails. Can you believe it? My vertigo and watching my family walk up to the edge was enough to make me crazy! It was such a beautiful site though. We had such a wonderful day there.

After a day at the Grand Canyon and the Hoover Dam on the way, we headed back to Las Vegas.
The next day we spent touring the strip. Ceasars Palace mall and the Bellagio Fountains and the favorite stop the M&M's store :-)

Then we drove back to LA to return the rental car, what a beautiful drive. We flew to
San Francisco and spent a day and a half there. Below is a picture of Lombard Street (the crookedest street). I finally got to see San Fran. It has been a long time coming. We spent the majority of our time at Fisherman's Wharf. The food was awesome and we had a lot of fun on trolleys and walking up some really steep streets! I will have to go back some day and wander through some other neighborhoods, anyone interested?

The girls were so glad to see green grass they just had to lay in it! We were so sick of SNOW!

After that it was back to snowy, slushy Chicago. We spent a little time in San Francisco airport trying to get out, but finally did. I wanted to include this beautiful picture Kelsey took at a butterfly garden at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas. What a shot!

We were happy to get back home and not have to eat out and ride public transportation anymore. I was thrilled to have a beautiful weekend this week and look forward to no more snow. The tulips are starting to come up, next our very own butterflies!

sPriNg hAs SPruNg!


Three years ago I went to the Long Grove Art Festival to check it out for the possibility of adding it to my Summer Art show schedule. That day, I happened to stumble upon this Eclectic little boutique called "Olivia's Past".

This store has the BEST clothes and accessories, so of course I had to get a few things! As karma (I believe) would have it ... 2 years later I had my jewelry at the Long Grove Art Festival when a beautiful gal named Lynne came by. An instant connection was made as she loved my jewelry and I loved her cute Lacey Top and her fun loving spirit. To my surprise she owned "Olivia's Past" and asked if I would be interested in putting my jewelry in her store. I was thrilled by the opportunity to show my jewelry in her shop, because I loved it so much. A match made at the Art Fest! Oh, and by the way, I do own that cute Lacey Top along with some other things.

CR Design Gallery Trunk Show
See my new line of jewelry for spring and summer
"Olivia's Past" April 18th from 11 - 8 April 19th from 11 - 6
Come on by and see for yourself all the things this boutique has to offer and enjoy an evening or afternoon in downtown Long Grove.
Get ready for Mother's Day and Spring/Summer

Some baubles currently available at the store.

(click on pictures to view more detail)


Oh, March is here and that means a few short weeks for those of us going on spring break, or a few short months for those of us not and the swimsuit season is upon us! I don't know about the rest of you, but I have been spending some quality time at the gym this month! All these days of being snowed in with a lot of time to relax and EAT and the muffin top has over flowed.

To my surprise, I have enjoyed this month at the gym. I feel like I have come to life again. I have gotten out of the house and actually see people. I even ventured into my first yoga class today and I must say that I am going to make it a weekly event. I loved it and lord knows this 40 something body needs some stretching out. Every time something gets dropped I am afraid to pick it up, because it hurts and I might get stuck!

I say make an effort this month to try new things. Life has much to offer and we tend to get stuck in patterns of the everyday. So go out and enjoy the rebirth of spring and embrace swimsuit season muffins and all :-)


Snow Day

And winter slumbering in the open air
Wears on his face A dream of spring.

...Samuel Taylor Coleridge

A winter snowstorm keeps us at home warm and snuggly...
On this February day.
Something is very comforting about this.


Preview Artist: Pravina Studio

My brother Dave's girlfriend Diana makes beautiful purses and I wanted to showcase some of her work and bio. Enjoy...

As an anthropologist and a museum curator I seek to preserve cultural artifacts. Objects possess a power, a history. They tell the stories of people's lives. As an artist, I am happy to be doing my part in creating meaningful handmade objects.

After being a terrible failure at sewing a blue, shark shaped pillow in my 7th grade home economics class, I thought I'd hung the bobbin up for good. Imagine my surprise when I bought my first sewing machine a few years ago and realized that I, in fact, love to sew.

Fascinated by the tactile quality of things, I experiment with contrasting textures and colors. Every piece I create is unique. No assembly line here. I will thoughtfully sit surrounded by different fabrics until I've found just the right combination for the project at hand. It might take 10 minutes, it might take 2 days. The fun is in taking ingredients and transforming them into something new. Creating something that didn’t exist yesterday.

Pravina Studio's online presence:


Family Fun in Springfield

We went on a family fun trip to Springfield, IL our capital. The reason for this trip was for Kelsey to compete with her cheer squad in a competition. I was excited at the chance to go and see our state capital and visit the Lincoln Museum which I had heard so much about.

We arrived at 7pm on Saturday eve and knew we were in for a fun filled week when the screaming, jumping, hugging started the minute we walked into the hotel as Kelsey ran into other team mates. We had a nice dinner in the hotel and called it a night early so we could take advantage of the morning before the competition.
We started the morning with a great breakfast at a little restaurant called "Tea Thyme". A small cozy restaurant with one of the friendliest waitresses I have ever had. This was a great way to start out one of the coldest days of the year. We then went on to tour Lincoln's home. We got to see how Lincoln lived before the white house.
Back to the hotel to get ready for the competition. Kelsey got ready and met up with her team for some last minute coaching and practice.
They competed around 3 in the afternoon and took first place in their division:-) We were all thrilled!
Next morning on to the Lincoln Museum. What a wonderful place. We all learned things we never knew about Lincoln and the presentations were unbelievable. Here I begged the girls to pose with the wax figures of the family. Kelsey was too "creeped out " to stand by them, but Courtney said she would. I think the picture speaks for itself (click on picture to see larger).

We headed home after the museum with a quick stop to Cozy Dog for hot dogs on a stick a famous spot of old Rt. 66. What a fun excursion, a big thanks to the cheer competition that brought us there.


New Years Resolutions

Here it is "Start a Blog" (resolution 1: Journal, be accountable)! What a great way to sum up the weeks activities and reflect on how much I accomplished all week. I always heard it was healthy to journal your thoughts, so why not?!

O.K. here goes the excitement of my week. I worked on my taxes! Wow, got an early jump on them this year (resolution 2: Do not procrastinate)! I usually put this task off until Harold is bugging me that we only have a week left to get it done. So hey, January and I am almost finished with the haunting task of doing my taxes:-) Must admit it is a great feeling.

I have also reorganized my studio (resolution 3: Be organized). For those of you that have visited my know what a task this was too! So now I am freed to go down and create my new masterpieces for 2008. I cannot wait to get started on some of the new ideas that are running through my head. I will update my blog with my new creations as they are born (resolution 4: Focus on creativity) .

I am also devoting this year to being a stronger mother (resolution 5: Don't kill the children). Teens can do things to you that require great strength, those of you who have them know what I am talking about. Of course I am going to gain great strength at the gym this year too and eat healthier (resolution 6: Same as everyone else).

More dates with the hubby (resolution 7: Harold, who's on that).

I have now put them out there. Feel free to send me yours too, so I can help hold you accountable. Thanks for being a part of my first blog. Look forward to doing more!