Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Not Your Mother's Better Home and Garden

I love my magazines.  I have mentioned several times about going to the bookstore and spending a couple of hours going through the magazine rack for my inspiration and additions to my stash.  Last week I was at Hastings, enjoying a hot chocolate, buying a couple of gifts and relishing a bit of bookstore time.  I was seated next to the magazines rack, the side where all the Vogue, Glamour, Elle magazines reside.  In other words, an area I seldom venture.  Looking up, I noticed a little 'black duck' in amongst all the glossy swans and the article captions on the front cover immediately caught my eye.
picture from IndieChick site

I think the one about living a passionate life was the one which snagged me immediately.  I skirted around the rope separating the cafe area from the bookstore, grabbed the magazine, brought it back to my table and started flipping through it.   It only took a quick look to know this was going in the pile coming home with me.

The cover is grey-tone with splashes of pink, a really nice change from the elaborate covers of many magazines, including my beloved "O".  The next thing I noticed were there were few, very few, ads.  In fact, the couple of ads which were there were to help Indie Chick be published.  So no annoying perfume ads (although I could use a couple of new strips in my undie drawer).  No ads trying to sell me $500 shoes while I am trying to figure out what bills to pay this month.  Many of the pictures have than 'instagram' look to them and the page layouts are edge to edge.  No over abundance of white, glossy space here.  And then there are the articles.

 At the grand age of 57,  I am thinking "what do some 20-somethings know about life"...for me that was half a decade ago and I'm still learning.  A bit gritty and in your face, those are not stories on "how to catch your man" or "50 uses for kumquats".  These are truths your BFF would tell you, bold, bald and out there and not for the faint of heart.  (Definitely not Family Circle.  If you are easily offended and need things glossed over, don't pick it up.)  And this five- decades-of-living-under-my-belt woman enjoyed every one of them.

I giggled a bit over the "7 signs it's a quarter-life crisis".  Even at my 'half-life' many of these questions still arise.  And the passionate life article (by Chrystal Rose) that initially stopped me?  Well, I wish I had known these hints when I was 25 rather than having to struggle at forty-something on starting to redefine and reinvent my authentic self.

The problem with this magazine?  Where was it when I was 20? 23? 27?  Instead I had Cosmopolitan giving me permission to have sex with everyone that came along, a quiz on my style, and how to do it in heels (hey, it was the late 70's, early 80's!)  Another article, by Julie Zantopoulos, (which is going up on my board), is "Screw You, I Don't Need Your Support".  As someone who only in the last few years acknowledged to herself about being a writer and artist, this really hit home.  "You succeed because you're a badass and you're not going to let anything stop you." has become my mantra.  Most of the articles are written by the same handful of young women.  They might be young in years, but I found most of their advice and comments pretty spot on.  The things they are writing about are things I hope I taught my daughters at an early age so they don't have to struggle later on like I did/do.

Showing the magazine to Savvy meant I lost possession of it.  She's looking to subscribe.  Here was a magazine which spoke her language as a young, soon-to-be 24 year old woman.  She fits the tagline of IndieChick - self-empowerment for women.  I subscribed to their website.  Funky, linked to the latest in social media, and insightful, these young women are a force to be reckoned with. 

Meanwhile, the magazine is on the bathroom floor - which is a good thing.  It gets read and re-read and read again. Until the next issue takes it's place.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Day Before

Tomorrow is my surgery to fix my broken wrist.  I am looking at it from two points of view and wishing it were all over, including the healing.   So this is a little something I have been working on over the past few days.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Regifting - Day 2

Lousy night of little sleep.  My body feels like a toxic waste dump.  Come on surgery.

Friday, December 12, 2014


Since I am down a hand, 'regifting' a mandala from last year.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Hardest Post

This has to be the hardest post I have ever written.  Not because of subject matter, but because I slipped on the ice on Monday afternoon.  The fall resulted in breaking my wrist.  My right wrist.  And you guessed it, I'm right handed.

What is funny and ironic is that I was following someone across the street who was wearing heels.  I was in tennis shoes with tread on them.  Teach me to care about other people.  But so far I think it's kind of funny.  Until in a phone conversation with the orthopedic nurse which I was referred to by the Urgent Care Clinic advised me my appointment on Wednesday was to discuss my surgery next week!

Wait!  What!  Surgery!

So for Christmas I'm getting an operation.  And not the game.  

Everyone at work couldn't be more concerned (it occurred in the street outside work) and the offers of help are just fantastic.  The girls are being great.  But the kid in me which is thinking "Wow! I have a cast (temp one at this point) is quickly being replaced by reality.  This sucks!

I had all kinds of writing plans over the holidays.  Not this trying to be comfortable and elevate and ice.  In fact, my elevation and icing plans included a couple of drinks out.

But it does give me pause to stop and think there are people who go about their day-to-day lives with only one arm.  They have my immense admiration.

And Savvy pointed out as I was struggling to get out my daily dose of vitamins that thank goodness I have been taking calcium supplements or my intimate encounter with the pavement could have been worse.

So finals for the semester will be interesting.  So will my participation in the Documented Life 2015 project, the Flow journal 30 day class and the start of the writing group next week.

Anyway, be careful what you wish for.  My desire to have a cast came about 5 decades late!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Digital Art

I think I might be getting the hang of using Photoshop....finally.  I'm getting to where I wanted to be when I first started taking Graphic Design classes a few years ago.  I need to integrate some elements from Illustrator into Photoshop, but that's the next step.  Here are a couple of pictures I created over the past few days.

Untitled 12.14
This first one is an experiment blending spheres, doing some fractal-type designs and layering.  What is fun is the background is actually cloud pictures I have taken.  They make a good nebula.

Total Eclipse of the Moon

Once again a composite of a couple of pictures I have taken and some circles with layering.  What I'm excited about is I feel I am getting to where I want to be to start doing the things I want to do.  Hammering out a little Illustrator elements to assist in some of my design elements.  

I'm so happy!

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Christmas Shopping Hairdos

Last week Savvy and I went to do her Christmas shopping.  It turned out to be more of a day of beauty than Christmas shopping.  Savvy had her 'do' in mind for several months and her work gave her the go-ahead for her style.  It's a bit hard to see, but shaved on the sides and back and long on top.  Her head feels so soft when I pet it.  I do have to say that the two stylists at Cost Cutters here in Helena did a bang-up job on our heads.  I like them much, much better than Great Clips.  I didn't feel like they were cutting our hair by formula.

I got mine cut while there since I looked like the bear coming out of hibernation.    It's one thing to know I will not have to face the 'old lady pink head' as I get older.  But sometimes it being so thick makes me look like a bit overgrown.  So the back and sides are short (but not as short as Savvy's) and the top longer.  I do have to say I have gotten a few compliments on the 'do', so it must be a definite improvement.

Another thing we did (beyond spending way too much money) was to get makeup.  I haven't worn makeup in ages!  But we went to Ulta and the nice girls there kindly helped this old lady pick out something that wouldn't take ages to apply and that didn't look made up.  I do have to say that a little bit of makeup isn't bad.  (But we didn't have our makeup on in this picture.)

So I am starting the new year with a new hairdo and makeup.  Let's see what other changes are inspired by 2015.  

Monday, December 08, 2014

Mandala Monday - King Leo

Every year when I was growing up in Tennessee, my paternal grandmother, Ginny, would get a large tin of King Leo Peppermints.  These are stick peppermints and are the soft kind of peppermints.  The kind you can put in your mouth and they just melt.  The kind, as a kid, I would walk around and think I was so cool with my 'cigarette'.  (Hey, remember, this was the early 60's!)

These days I know I can order them on the internet, but it's not the same as walking into a store and finding them.  So I was really delighted, when last week I found a small tin of them in a local Helena store, The General Mercantile.

It's a fun store to go into.  First off, it's an old store.  And it is filled with all kinds of fun candy and gift items.  And a huge koi swimming around in a pond inside.  AND, as we found out last week, they make a killer hot chocolate!  

Savvy picked up some items for friends and I got my peppermints.  I'm not going around 'smoking' my peppermint any more.  But I will save the tin and put something in it.  And stick it in the closet or on a shelf so Lady K can find it and go through all the treasures inside, just like my grandmother did with her tins.