It doesn’t get any better than this!

Written in my guestbook this morning:

35. Lauren Edwards Hi!

I looove your art!I was at the Candler Park Festavil and you gave me the pictures of the Basset hounds. I am going to ask my mom if we can buy a piece of your art!Please write bak.

Love,

Lauren Edwards

2003-10-19

My reply:

Lauren,

It was a pleasure to meet you and it makes me very happy to know that you love my art. I really appreciate you letting me know that. I did notice how many times you came back to my booth and that really made me smile! I hope you enjoy the pictures I gave you! Thank you for coming to see me and writing in my guestbook!!

Have a wonderful day!

Love,

Michelle

arghh!!

Ok, I am officially freaking out. I have been sooo calm the past few weeks, deciding not to stress over my festival. And last night the “maybe” demons took over! Maybe I should have done cards….Maybe I should have done magnets…Maybe I should have done more things earlier. Maybe no one will buy anything!! Arghhh! I am working onsite and am really trying hard to care about anything going on in this office! At least I did a ton of work here the past two days, so their office is in fairly good shape. I don’t know why I am surprised at any of this. I get like this (fairly insane) before small fundraisers. Of course I was going to freak before the festival that marks my one year anniversary into this whole crazy life I lead! Seriously getting dizzy. No really I am. But that is just the head/chest cold and lack of oxygen I think. I am rambling now, but now you have a clue as to how my mind sounds to me! It is crazy in here! Madness I tell you. Ok, need to go be productive and try to stay calm. Yeah. Calm. Right. Arghhhh!

dream it, design it, do it

It is 12:30 am and I am finishing up some design jobs. I have a half painted canvas with an Irish Setter lurking over my shoulder that is begging to be finished. The house is so quiet. I can hear my husband in the next room snoring. It is tempting to stay up until 3am and finish it, but I have to be up at 6am to get ready to go onsite and work somewhere else. Anyone who has kept up with my blog knows I can be a bit of a workoholic. But actually, I think I am just an average person working for themself. We have to work this hard to stay in the game. To pay the bills. And, well, to be honest, the masochistic part of me really does love it.

The headline of this blog is from a Home Depot Ad that is all over yahoo right now. The tag line really caught my eye. I think it applies to everyone that wants to live a richer, more fullfilling life. Whatever it may be. First we have to dream it, then make plans and design how that life will look, finally and most importantly, we have to do it. And all this is a process. Some days I am dreaming, some days doing, some days designing my life. So often I can get caught up in one of these phases for too long and anxiety or pressure to be something else too soon sets in. I think the secret is a balancing act of all three. I am in doing it mode right now, but once the frenzy of the festivals is over and I get into a daily rhythm of painting again my brain will shift into dream mode again. I have a few things that need to be dreamed on then designed in the back of my head. And I will trust that there is a time for all that to get done one day. I am in such a place of gratitude with my life right now. To some my life may be far from perfect depending on their definition of success, but for me I am walking on clouds right now. I encourage everyone that may be reading this to keep moving forth in whatever process of your life’s plan you are in. Remember that there is a time and season for everything and trust in that. It will give you a calm and sense of knowing that you are exactly where you should be. Just don’t quit. Don’t you ever quit. As hard as it gets, you can ALWAYS be dreaming about it, and that is a very good phase to be in.

bit of craziness…

Sure it will be a good idea to work onsite for the three days right before my big festival…not! Oh well, here I sit in someone else’s office keeping them up to date while my mind thinks of all the things I need to get done when I get home. I have not gone to bed until well past midnight for over a week now and a nasty head cold has gotten a hold of me. Luckily, I am waaay too excited for my festival to let any of this bother me! I picked up a banner I had made yesterday and it is too cute! I am really excited and cannot wait to see my booth all put together. A whole lot of craziness going on! I have been so busy lately that I said in passing to my son yesterday, “I guess mommy is not being such a good mommy lately, huh?” He quickly replied, “Don’t say that! You are the best mommy ever! You are just a busy mommy right now!” THAT made me feel alot better. I truly am enjoying this frenzy of preparation and cannot wait to sit in the sunshine and meet new people this weekend! Wish me luck!

rain or shine!

Saturday I had my doxie festival! What fun! Who knew there were so many varieties of those tiny tiny weiner dogs! And I don’t think any owners will be offeneded when I say they might very well be THE most spoiled dogs I have ever seen! Just like little children when they get tired they look up, “yip!” and their (very trained) owner picks them right up. They then rest their head in a crook of an elbow and go to sleep! Amazing! This one women who was selling these very plush bags that you carry your dog in with a shoulder strap was making a killing!! It sprinkled lightly all day longer, but the turnout was amazing and all the little weiner dogs in holiday costumes kept me smiling all day long! Well that and my orders that same in! Look for a painting of three silver dappled doxies (I didn’t know either, but you can see what they look like in my painting) coming soon! Plus some very other handsome little guys!

Then yesterday I had the golden retreiver rescue which was in a gorgeous park with a huge lake. It was sunny and beautiful and I actually got a sunburn! What great dogs goldens are!! So beautiful and friendly! I did very well at this event and just had a fabulous time! I met awesome people and both people that one my gift certificates at these events were very excited and that just makes my day!

I am now very revved up for my big festival next week, and am getting all the last of my supplies. I pick up the banner for my booth tomorrow! I can’t wait! I am hoping for a beautiful weekend without rain, but as Saturday proved, rain doesn’t seem to stop too many people from getting out and having a good time when the opportunity presents itself! Once again I think, “Wow, do I really get to make people smile for a living?! Again, thank you God for my life!”

home sweet home!

Ah….back at home. My husband, my dogs, my hot pot of coffee a room away, now that’s what I’m talkin’ about! But while I am glad to be back it was fun to go work onsite somewhere. I forgot about the office talk, being able to ‘talk shop’ with another designer, being able to bounce ideas off another, share music interests, share cool design sites, just TALK. I forget how silent it can be working for oneself. I go back a few days next week again and am sitting in on a big brainstorming meeting for a magazine they are having me work on. Ironically both designers are out next week and I will be manning their office alone. Sigh…it was nice while it lasted! 😉

Today I am painting like crazy for a doxie festival Sat and a golden festival Sun. I want to paint one of each breed for display and encourage people to order now for the Dec. holidays. Then next Saturday marks my one year anniversary into festival-dom!! I am SOOO excited and am having a banner made for my tent. It will look similar to the masthead of my website-lots of dogs across the top. I am trying to compete for the “best booth” display which comes with a cash award. Thank you design skills!!

Oh, another perk of working somewhere. Free stuff. Yesterday someone came in the design office, recognized me from when I had been there before and offered me two free tickets to the Thrashers season opener!! So my husband and I got a free date nite which only cost us $80 after babysitting, the crazy expensive food at Philips Arena, and the train ride to get there. Don’t ya love free stuff!? But it WAS alot of fun!! Ok, off to work…Oh who am I kidding?? Off to get my coffee! Oh, and I am wearing an old tee shirt, my comfy pj bottoms and bare feet. And I’m lovin it!!!

A public display of affection…

Dear Katrina (Of Feisty Scribe Fame!),

I received a surprise from you in the mail yesterday! Your card was so very thoughtful and beautiful. You are such a kind and inspiring soul and this world is so very lucky to have you in it! I was so moved by your thoughtful gift. After reading it I exclaimed out loud to an empty room, “There is hope in this world!” I know that if a person I have never met face to face in the world took her time to make me such a lovely card illustrated with honeysuckle simply because she knew I liked it…. Well, then I know this world is indeed the wonderful place I believe it to be. Thank you Katrina from the bottom of my heart. You continue to inspire not just me, but so many others everywhere. Thank you for being you and sharing yourself so openly!

Most sincerely,

Michelle