And the winner is........

Sally Parrot Ashbrook!
of Atlanta

And thank you all for playing along.
[Sally, there is an e-mail link on the sidebar
so that you can provide me with an address.
I will get your prize painting in the mail promptly.

I thought this giveaway would give me an idea
of who is out there looking at my work.
I thought I might have a few more than 16 responses,
but I am still excited to be a new blogger of one year.

I will be taking a short break from blogging -
hopefully only one more week.
My little IMac of 5 years is at the hospital.
Please send happy thoughts for its recovery.


Pick One!

#30 - 7" Watercolor and gold acrylic paint

Choose your favorite little mandala from the set of 30.
Leave a comment on this post stating
your name and the town you reside in
plus your favorite piece (number 1 thru 30).

I will randomly pick a name and the winner
will win the mandala of their choice!

The winner will be announced 
Friday, August 29th.

(I must exclude #18 and #19
as friends have already expressed interest
in purchasing them before they went up for sale.

If you have any problems leaving a comment,
please e-mail me and let me know.

Also, I have uploaded all 30 to flickr 
for your slideshow enjoyment.

Thanks again Geninne for her giveaway.
I am paying it forward as I said I would.



Gold Thread

#29 - 8" Hand sewn craft paper with gold thread
One more and then the giveaway. 



#28 - 6-1/2" Card stock and sewing machine scribbles



#27 - 6" India ink on mat board.

I have recently broken down and shattered into pieces. Currently, I am picking up the pieces and putting myself back together again in a more beautiful and healthy configuration – leaving behind that which no longer serves me. I had not realized how much I was holding inside until uncontrollable emotion rose to the surface and erupted in a fit of rage. I am no longer spinning my wheels in frustration replaying the same old complaints. I am detached from anger and frustration.
My day job is not the source
of my identity, security or sustenance.



#26 - Paper mosaic with acrylic paint



#25  - 5-1/2" Collage



#24 - 6" Collage with gold paint



#23 - 6" Acrylic on mat board


Peace on Earth

#22 - Monoprint with watercolor and white acrylic


Monoprint and paper punch

#21 - 8" - Mixed media. Acrylic paint and paper collage.
(note: Titles of blog posts are not necessarily titles of paintings)



#20 - 8" acrylic on paper



#19 - 8" acrylic on mat board


Layoffs. Disaster. Wicked.

We don't know how complacent we are until things really start shaking up all around us.

Last Friday I survived layoffs at work. The third time since I was hired 15 years ago. As I was led into a small conference room I took a deep breath and reminded myself  - if I lost my job, it would be a blessing in disguise because that is a sign from the Universe that there is something better out there. I truly believe that. For everyone. Of course when I said "remind myself" I mean I was really trying to convince myself. It's easy to say you believe in something until you have to put it into practice. During really tough economic times it's hard to imagine what great opportunities lie ahead. To anyone experiencing such hardship - keep the faith.

Saturday and Sunday was a nice quiet summer weekend followed by a stormy Monday. Having small children I've had to calm their fears for years. Thunder is just loud - it won't hurt us. The lightening is really far away - it just looks close. We're in the house - so we're safe.

Reports say it wasn't technically a tornado, but 96 mile an hour winds are devastating - funnel cloud or not. Driving home from a friend's house as the sky opened up, it was the worst storm I have ever experienced. The girls were eerily calm or maybe they knew those things I would have said were not true. The lightening was close, we were not in our house and Darrin and I both feared that trees or other large objects would land on the car.

Our mini-van crawled to our house down pitch black roads caused by major power outages. We scurried in, found candles and flashlights and felt secure because we had made it home safe. After settling into our beds and finally drifting off to sleep we were awakened by the town tornado warning siren. We've only heard it once before, aside from the always annoying test each and every Saturday at 12:15 pm precisely. Now it was 12:15 am and I found myself rushing the girls down the basement stairs in complete darkness, grabbing pillows and blankets because I knew we would spend the rest of the night there. 

I've never been afraid of a storm. I was afraid of this one. The lightening was so close, it sounded as if it hit one corner of the house, then the opposite, then it was back on the first corner. The storm was not rolling in or moving out. We were in it.

We woke up to stillness and surveyed the damage. Our house is intact, but hundred year old trees all around were wounded or completely destroyed. The only damage we suffered was the lack of electricity and erratic phone service for 48 hours. 

These photos were taken a couple blocks from my house.

Many of these photos (Griffith) were taken a couple of miles from my house. I haven't let my daughters see all of them. The vision would cause too much worry during the next storm.

Adding to the excitement and busy-ness of my life. Yesterday, was our big Girl Scout trip to see WICKED! It was fabulous. And, yes, I still have a lot to learn about myself and others through Girl Scouts.

Yesterday's revelation: when it comes to people, I am uncoordinated. I don't mean I am an uncoordinated person. Forget the skateboard accident. I can juggle, do coordination jumping jacks, rub my belly and pat my head, and reverse hands. I have no skill or desire to coordinate people - which is why I am not in management or politics.

I pulled it off. Seems like months of planning. It was months of planning to purchase theatre tickets for 24 people and lead them downtown on the train. Everyone was pleased that I had made the effort, but silly me, I've been stressed out about going to the theatre.

All scouts (but one) were accompanied by parents. Once I lead them to their seats I relaxed and enjoyed the show (for the second time). I let them all know they were on their own at that point, free to stay in the city for a while and avoid rush hour trains back home. A few stayed back with me. I suggested grabbing a sandwich and walking over to Millennium Park. Very worthwhile! None of them had been there before! Needless to say - they loved it.

I have a job. I have a house. I am blessed.

Tomorrow - back to mini mandalas and few words.

Ride out the storm. peace.



#18 - 8" - Watercolor on 140 lb. paper


Flower Burst

#17 - 8" Watercolor on 140 lb. paper



#16 - 7" Watercolor on Illustration board