Preschool Painting – The brown period

As a creative Mother and Homemaker, painting was a big part of our weekly activities in our home. Most of the time, we worked only with Red, Blue & Yellow (the primary colors). This was great for a while when it was just about getting each individual color on the paper. Then started the mixing phase. Where beautiful greens, oranges and violets flourished- NOT! Nope – this kicked off the brown phase. Where all of the paint became mixed together into elephant skin colors or bark tones.

Usually to the delight and disappointment of my young artist. This phase is hard even for me the veteran art teacher – not to touch the paint or the creation.

I would give in to my own urge to not have grey reign. Only giving two of the primaries or two analogous colors so that days work would be vibrant still. It wasn’t until we reached the end of this phase, that I realized the power of the the brown period. He learned how to push the colors and also how to STOP!

The many months… years of brown. Gave him an understanding, I could not give him. His cells had to learn this on their own.

Let your kids experiment – I double dog dare you!

Reclaiming Homemaker – A safe place

I recently found out I was horrified by the change from Home-Ec to Home Consumer Sciences. I claim feminism and love my fierce believe in equality. BUT I ALSO HOLD SACRED HOMEMAKER. I am a slightly hippy, local food loving Momma. I gave up the high powered career to raise my child and nanny my brother’s children. Was it the path I thought my life would take? NOPE, never.

My path was surprising, as my hubby and I thought about building a family we quickly realized it would take one of us leaving the 60 hours a week to create a space to build a family. I worked in to build a small but meaning-filled art business two years before we started trying for a family. I then started nannying my brothers two children before I had children of my own.

During this time, I spent a lot of time explaining what I did exactly… that is when I landed on Creative Homemaker. I created a sacred safe creative space for my two charges to flourish and when I became pregnant. I focused even more on Home Making. This was a term I was raised to joke about. I love the term in my art to be a maker. I feel the energy in this language.

As ancestrial diet and local eating became the craze, my need to be a homemaker and claim the sovernty of that language turned on even more. I feel like my work is seasonally driven and it is work that is rhythmic.

I have put my own unique spin on Homemaking. I am a creative soul and my heart was nurtured by my family who believed in me. When I was told “I was not an artist” at school, the craft and art supplies ever increased at my home. This was essential for my soul to continue to breath. The creative work I engaged in at home helped me develop until my heart, until my head said – “who cares” in late high school and I started taking art classes again… surprised or not at all, I was pretty good.

Home can be a place were we create safe spaces for the whole family can figure out what makes them tick. How do we inspire vulnerability and life long learning at home?


Creative Motherhood – A case for increasing creativity in your home!

Many of us were not deemed create in elementary school. Jimmy’s horse looked like a horse. My horse was green and had horns. Jimmy is the artist the rest of the class is cute. This differentiation might be good in other areas of learning, it is important to identify the best readers and athletes but within the class for further challenge. This is not the same for Art. The project can become as challenging or easy depending on the complexity of the thought of each student.


If art and creative study is happening without focus or openness in the education system. It is time for Mothers to reclaim the mantle of creativity at home. Creating an environment of safe learning at home and one in which we are learning is an essential part of my home and could be part of yours.

My question to you is – Why not us?

NEW ART SHOW – 30 new pieces


PUYALLUP CITY HALL, 5th Floor, 333 S Meridian
Showing now through July 10
Meet the Artist Reception May 19 5:30-7 pm

This show is a collection of art quilts and acrylic mixed media paintings. I love the play of textures in this show. This collections roots come from my love of women’s stories and handiwork.

I actively try and reclaim the sacred work of home-making. An ancestral view of women spending effort and time to make home a beautiful safe place to grow a family is a connection to the past I hope to emulate. Scrap quilts and beautiful paintings have graced homes for centuries. It is no surprise to me that the recently the handprint cave paintings where discovered to be female hands. This is part of the magic of womanhood and work of our gifts. Homemaker’s Hope is a statement of authority for me to create a safe place for my family to be who they are.


As an artist, I live my life out loud and am always creating – everyday in fact. After completing an art degree in college I set about living my life in a creative way – I work with families, individuals, churches & businesses to have their stories and values come to life in commissioned works of art. I work in acrylics, fiber art, public speaking, sculpture, and journaling.

Book Club – Reimagined

When I wanted to start an empowering women’s book club I emailed about ten of the ladies in my life that had showed some interest in diving deeper into Brene’ Brown’s work, Daring Greatly. Who responded? Two women. One who I was recently reacquainted with (see earlier post on Duct Tape) and one who many had said “you and her should be friends.” So not exactly who I thought. We met the first time and wow. It was like we had been together for years. The club quickly and affectionately became known as “Wine Club” with books. We started reading books about business and sharing our many lessons learned on our hard-fought journey toward self-acceptance and living in larger bodies. All of us agreed about a year in we should host a daylong retreat to create space for women to investigate the way they talk about and treat their bodies.

The lesson for me in this was- the book club was not what I expected. Driving to the first meeting I felt disappointed and somewhat a failure for not getting enough interest. I think I even opened the meeting with “I’m Sorry…” My achilles heal of self-love, blaming myself. That is when the lovely red head next to me said, “Why are you sorry, the right people are here.” Period end of story.

Is there a community you are hoping to create? What’s stopping you? It might not look like you envisioned, and that might be the best thing about it.

Journals – Gathering focus

I am an avid art journal enthusiast. At first I carried a chunky half page journal with me everywhere I went. It housed my grocery list, idea sketches and art journal elaborate pages of mixed media. It was a jumble. Now i carry a thin journal with in my purse and my quick sketches, meditation notes and everyday notes live in there. Then at home I have a few art journal books that help me explore different topics.

Journals I started

  • prayer book
  • journal Bible
  • Enough- my personal journal
  • Things my Son Says and Does
  • Word of the year

I am thinking about starting-

  • Sow – Garden journal
  • Sacred Selfies
  • Love- a journal dedicated to the people who make all the difference

Do you keep a journal or diary? It is never too late to start.



The bamboo was a copy of a painting I did, love how the quote works it's way around the painting
The bamboo was a copy of a painting I did, love how the quote works it’s way around the painting

My practice of journal keeping has changed my life.  My journals are for sketching, keeping inspiration handy and playing with texture in an smaller format. This work has expanded my creativity in the larger projects of my life.

I also use journaling to create and refine my artistic vision.  When I have a spark of an idea. I jot it down in a journal, then doodle it and research it and expand it.  Sometimes that is enough. But those ideas that are worthy. They become in big paintings, creative endeavors and interesting happenings in my life.



I have started taking selfies… but not the usual ones, laughing, eating something strange or my feet at the beach. I am trying to create rituals & practices to create a best friendship with myself.

My internal critic has been a powerful, loud and mean part of my internal monolog for years.  Trying to shut her up has been a process.  My best way of coping and quieting her – is to create rituals that give me proof that she lies.

For years, I just decided I didn’t need to be in any photo’s because I was less than.  How strange is that?  It is humbling to set down the word weapons you use against yourself.

Changing the Voice with these two amazing online resources – & a Facebook group called We were there, too.  About how Momma’s need pictures with their children.

This photo pictures me with a halo of art.  I love that it shows me as I was at the time.  It is a grieving picture for me.



My heart yearns for story. I love it, it seeps into my pours and helps me focus my creative inspiration. My Hubby Smash spent the last two years as a MBA student and working full time… so I had some time on my hands to indulge in story.

I started with Tolkien. I have had an affinity since a child for the the story of the Hobbit. But with the Lord of the Rings movies… I fell in love with the epic drama of it all.

I found Professor Olsen and started listening to his college lecture on Tolkien. If you are a fan, this resource is phenomenal and will deepen your knowledge of all things Tolkien.

What stories feed your soul?


A teachable moment sometimes comes when you least expect it. I had one of these this year when I asked a long lost friend to coffee with a side of duct tape.

I had seen a friend from Junior high pinning swim suits & knew from Facebook that she was in her year of yes! I decided to send her a brave message – “I know I haven’t seen you for 20 years but do you want to wrap each other in duct tape & make a mannequin of your likeness for sewing?”

Of course, she said yes!

As we reconnected and realized we were kindred spirits, we wrapped and noticed the elegant angels of each others form (artist & massage therapist). It was then that the talk turned to societal beauty and our thoughts around Health at Every Size (HAES). I fight for my self worth fiercely… she does the same.

I never realized having a form , a realistic look at yourself is shocking. I spent a ton of time just staring at it. I have plans to make some clothing for myself but the work of the mannequin has accomplished so much all ready.

It has given me eyes to see myself & I am so thankful.

beautifully made
beautifully made
My bad- to-the-bone duct tape self
My bad- to-the-bone duct tape self
All wrapped up - armor on!
All wrapped up – armor on!
Stand up straight, strange feeling corset
Stand up straight, strange feeling corset