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Tag: goals

Gifts and Goals

Gifts and Goals

Endings Are Beginnings: Goals

There’s ALWAYS a HUGE flurry of activity in November and December, trying to finish up final projects and commissions of the year, doing sales/shows, and prepping shipments, along with my own household holiday “stuff”. 102 cloverI am thrilled to have completed ALL of my 2016 business goals, considering that my husband was bedridden for over two months and in the hospital for almost a week.  An ocean-themed coloring book was created, 100+ bowls painted (!), and diorama “Daydream” boxes put together, among other things. An odd item on my personal list was to find 100 four-leaf clovers in 2016. I found #100 in October, and ended at 102 (unless I find another before New Year’s)!

tabledoneGoals give you focus, and reaching goals leaves room for more learning experiences! Breaking big goals into bite-sized pieces helps you accomplish what you set out to do (learn, create, grow, build, accomplish). For example, painting a whole dining set with 6 chairs is a HUGE undertaking, so we broke it into steps which made the project less daunting. We removed the seats and cleaned the chairs. Cleaned the table. Sanded rough spots. And so on. You can’t do it all at once. Baby steps.

What makes you say YES? What do you WANT to do in the next year (not what do you HAVE to do)? Name your GOAL!

ocean coloring bookThe Making Of An Adult Mandala Coloring Book

Producing “My Mother’s Garden” adult coloring book (last year) meant labor-intensive sketching from garden photos, scanning the sketches, cleaning up the scans, and then laying it all out the book format. It took a long time! My latest adult coloring book, “Ocean Rhythms,” was done on my laptop in around 50 hours (including creating the art and finding suitable quotes and ocean facts for each page). The mandalas I was creating needed to be more precise than my hand-drawing skills could produce, and building them in CorelDRAW was the best way for me to accomplish the task.

mandala creationAfter laying out a blank page to the correct size and format for publication, I chose five or six creatures and a tiny decorative motif for each mandala. I started with the center, created a circle, and then aligned objects (sharks, fish, starfish, whales, turtles, etc) along the path of the circle varying the numbers in each piece. Increasing the size of the circular path, I added more creatures in various configurations. Some of the pages are distinctly Hawaiian (in fact, I used Hawaiian petroglyphs in some of the pieces), and each mandala has a main focus, whether shells, deep sea, sharks, or turtles. It was a very interesting learning process as I got my hands on some tools in Corel that I’ve never used before. I’ll admit that it still is a very unusual but pleasant, feeling to color in a book that came from my brain and hands!

ARTIST’S PICK: 10 Beautiful Gifts

dolphin dioramaHere are some of my top picks from the store (at this moment). Clicking on each will take you to the product in the shop. 1) The “Daydream” diorama boxes with beach scenes are my absolute favorite…and I have some gnome dioramas, too! Dive into a magical world when you open the lid…this Pacific dolphin swimming near shore makes me smile every time I open the lid!

2, 3) I still have a wonderful selection of 35″ square hand-dyed Kaleidoscope silk scarves. Some of them look like stained glass windows, and all of them have glorious colors! And in the same sort of design vein, the Ocean Rhythms adult coloring book fulfills that need to “color all the things”.

silk scarf     mandala sample
4, 5) Hand-painted ornaments for the bird lovers and turtle lovers! Birds and turtles are cute, but add a Santa hat, and they are super adorable!

painted ornamentspainted bird ornaments

6, 7, 8, 9, 10) Unusual new pieces: a realistic three-toed sloth, a fiery mandala bowl with “lava” dripping on the edge, a tiny peacock feather ring bowl, a yarn bowl with a nest inside (the other two yarn bowls sold immediately), and a whimsical jewelry tray (or trinket tray) filled with pretty swirls of pink, white, and black.

1539 sloth bowl  volcano mandala bowl    tiny peacock feather bowl  bird nest yarn bowljewelry tray trinket tray

So there you have it! Pretty things, an adult coloring book project, a gift sale, 102 four-leaf clovers, and GOALS!
Remember, the completion of goals leaves room for new goals, new projects, and a chance to learn new skills, and I hope that you are looking forward to 2017’s gifts with the anticipation of a child. Let me know what you’re dreaming GOING to accomplish in 2017!

THANK YOU! Thank you so much for your incredible support this year! It meant so much to John and me (and he is doing MUCH better now). Until next time, have a wonderful holiday season and a Happy New Year, no matter how you celebrate!

Eclectic Dawn

Walls and Goals

Walls and Goals

It is incredibly difficult to find 1/8″ birch plywood in our area. Few places carry it, or they don’t carry the size we needed, or they want you to buy a truckload. We only needed six sheets to make the curved wall in the interior! We ordered some from our local DIY store, but when the order came in (later than promised), the pieces looked absolutely terrible and we rejected the order.
John called every place in the surrounding three states that might carry 1/8″ birch ply, but no one does (unless we wanted a truck load of it), so we were back to square one: ordering from the DIY and taking our chances when the wood arrived that it would actually look decent.
20150419.04Luckily, he was able to convince the supplier for the DIY store to let us pick our pieces (in Raleigh, over 80 miles one way), and they’d put our name on the order and ship it to our local DIY store for us to purchase (because they couldn’t sell to us directly). This whole process of finding 1/8″ birch plywood took almost two months, but we finally got it! He. Is. Tenacious! And God bless the ever-helpful Brittney at the DIY store who tried every which way to make sure we got what we needed.

WIRING: John mapped our new wiring out so that we’d know where wires were running when we were installing the ceiling and walls, as we certainly didn’t want to damage any of the new wiring with an errant staple.

Here are some of the lights we found for the interior. We wanted to keep a sleek atomic retro look, using LEDs for longevity and minimal power consumption, so we opted for new lighting fixtures instead of vintage.  

lites003  lites004litess006
Two of the four round lights will be installed under the dining area cabinets, then one in the ceiling, and the final one in the galley. I found that nifty light shown on the left at Lowe’s, and it will go by the dining table. There will also be a courtesy light in the back bed area and one inside the porta potty closet.

We are on super tight budget for this camper, so every penny saved is important, but we are not cutting any corners. We just do a LOT of comparison shopping for everything we purchase. John calls me the queen of research, but he’s been finding great deals himself! We check ebay, amazon, craigslist, local stores, big box stores, and independent online merchants. Plus, we re-purpose or re-use things, using items for a different use than their original purpose.

So, as of April 22, 2015…wiring: completed! Birch plywood in hand! Insulation and walls in progress! Today, the 1/8″ install will be completed, and then we’ll move on to the side walls. Below, there’s my arms getting tired holding up the ceiling for stapling, and the finished ceiling install. I’m looking forward to seeing that wood varnished…ooooo!

My arms!  20150419.06

The excitement is building! Once the walls are varnished, we get a real floor! And lights! And cabinets! And a table! omg…a bed!
When we originally set up a rehab plan for the camper, we set benchmarks so we’d have surmountable goals.
TIP: Any project seems much less daunting when you have smaller goals to complete instead of the entire project. You don’t start out with “finish camper” or “land on moon”! You start with “strip interior” or “choose rocket building team”. Finishing the exterior paint and window installs meant we were halfway done, and having interior walls will mean she is almost 3/4 completed. WOW!

Of course, I’m always thinking five stepscamprLITES010 ahead, so now that the walls are going in, I’m dreaming of tabletops, countertops, and flooring. Keeping it space-age, I’d like a black galaxy-looking tabletop and counter (far right). Definitely a neutral flooring. A pop of color for the backsplash to draw out the warmth of the stain and the vermillion in the curtains. It’s all coming together…till next time, keep setting tiny goals, and keep stepping towards the finish line!
Eclectic Dawn
Thank you for supporting my etsy shop – it helped us so much while JohnnyV was sick!