I Had a Vision


2015-12-11 09.55.21

I’m in pretty good shape.  I have my ducks in a row, but dare I say I am exhausted!  That’s why it was nice to escape last night and have a girl’s night out making vision boards.  Vision boards are a way to “visualize” concepts, ideas and inspiration in hopes of drawing focus on aspects one would like to attract more of into their lives.  General categories include family, friends, romance, spirituality, and health and wealth.

For this new year, my focus will be experiencing & savoring happiness and letting go of my own preconceived notion of my role in this world! I’ve spent so many years worrying about being good enough, creative enough & contributing enough. That I think I’m done.  I hope I am.  Will I be mature & wise enough to let go of all of my roles and self-expectations and simply be?  For me it would be a personal paradigm shift.  That is what the Fibonacci spiral in the center of my board represents. Am I as tiny as a perfect nautilus shell or as expansive as the universe?  I think little Mary will stop focusing so much on asking the big questions and concentrate her efforts towards simply being.  Being in a constant state of questioning one’s purpose on this planet, leaves one in a perpetual state of questioning.  It’s time to make a transition from questioning to Being.

Hence the I AM.

Thank you to my beautiful friend that created this night for us.  I usually create a vision board for New Year’s, but it feels very good doing it amongst all the holiday mayhem.  It’s taken my focus off my immediate circumstances and allowed me to see the big picture.

That’s a Good Thing.



Have you ever heard of an Olympicnic?

Well it is very serious business.  Our family has started this ritual.

There may be silly races, water fights, a little corn hole, maybe a keg or two…

but now it just got a little more serious:


Now there are trophies involved!

My family used to have a Festivus party during the holidays as well.  I was given a two foot Santa boot and asked to create a trophy for that occasion. Whoever got the best position in our gift swap was cursed with taking home the boot for the year and having to return it to the next Festivus celebration.  Let’s just say over the years things were written on it, family photos may have been added…there may have even been a little glitter and Jesus, all with the highest respect and admiration I assure you.

Our new tradition is whoever wins the tiki-garden gnome or the hot-mama troll gets to “add to” their splendor for next year.  I even left shelves to fill.  I think the troll needs another entire tier below it.

Let the Olympicnic defacement begin!


I am just warning my family now, my daughter is playing to win.  She wants that tiki-garden gnome to reside in our up-stairs bathroom and she has advised us to do whatever it takes!!!

Bring it family. Bring it – Game on!



Many, many months ago I told you I had an idea…

2015-02-24 13.54.15

2015-01-06 16.05.33

But I never told you the idea…


I thought I’d show you the finished project but somehow, as usual, weeks turn into months!

I have this big black box of a fireplace insert.  It’s way too much black for my cheery décor.  So I had the idea to make tiles in my pottery class and attach them to the metal fireplace surround with magnets.  This way if I ever move, I can take them off and spare the next homeowner from what I deemed to be “gorgeous”.  Let’s face it, all humans disagree on that one!  Also, the fact that the fireplace is black becomes a perfect solution for the “appearance” of grout.


Of course I haven’t finished.  I need to make roughly 40 more tiles, but if I waited until that happened, I might very well have forgotten to show you my great idea!

Obviously you could take any tile and create a fun fireplace back splash.  If I were to do it again, instead of one giant magnet in the middle, I’d put 4 tiny magnets in each corner.  This way they wouldn’t spin like my tiles are apt to do.

Oh well, my tiles wiggling and spinning seems perfectly apropos. Everything else in the house always seems to be wiggling and spinning…and cracking…and peeling… you know being a house!

Good luck.  Let’s all keep working at making this world creative! What are you up to?

Normal is So Overrated


Quite sadly, my last bike was stolen right out of my yard while filling our moving van.  It wasn’t the greatest bike, but it was still my bike.

Very kindly, my mother-in-law offered up her old bike.  It’s a gray old Mongoose.  Nothing fancy, yet quite functional.

I’m at the point in my life, where I really don’t want a fancy car (that can be broken into), I don’t want an expensive bike (that can be stolen right out of my yard), nor do I want precious materials throughout my home (that would make me lose sleep and want to buy an alarm system).

I simply want comfy things and well thought-out pieces that I can enjoy every day. And yet, if they were no longer in my life, it wouldn’t  cause me any angst. In fact, it would bring me joy because then I’d have a reason to hunt for a new well worn-out treasure!

_aIMG_0233 (2)

My little girl thought it would be a great idea to take those new duct tapes on the market and decorate what she has termed my ” ugly bike”.

_aIMG_0233 (4) _aIMG_0233 (5) _aIMG_0233 (6)

She just so happens to have a not-so-normal mother who thought this was a flipping splendid idea!

We duct-taped my bike.  It now looks like Pee-Wee Herman’s flower garden and I simply love it.

If it gets worn-out, I’ll pick new tape and if someone tries to steal it, well good luck riding this bike through town.

I think we all shall know who it belongs to!


Like me on Facebook:  Be Creative Mary



#349- Ghosts of Christmas Past (1)

Here lie the ghosts of Christmases past.

I had this funny idea to make a wreath out of all those little toys you find on the stairs, under the bed,  and tucked in the car seat. It’s an homage to the bane of every mothers existence, crap toys! 

I have to say, I did have to ask my girlfriend for some of the junk off of her floor because as I began to create this wreath, my children began shrieking in protest! “I need that” “this one is my favorite” “that has sentimental value” –yeah right I say!  It’s the reason us moms have to dispose of this stuff when the kids are not around.  The old motto “out of sight, out of mind” is so true! My kids didn’t even know they had it until they see it again.

#349- Ghosts of Christmas Past (4)

To create the wreath I cut a circle with a hole out of a recycled cardboard box.  I then took six paper bowls and hot-glued them on to the cardboard.

#349- Ghosts of Christmas Past (5)

Now I had a steady base for compiling my toy wreath.

#349- Ghosts of Christmas Past (6)

Again, if you are a parent there is no short supply of toys.  I swear I didn’t even buy these.  How do my kids get them?  How do they multiply?  It’s like magic…or a curse!

#349- Ghosts of Christmas Past (2)

I started with the biggest toys and the stuffies.  They were the first to be glued into the bowls. From there I hot-glued in my favorites, meaning the toys I wanted most visible and then finally I glued in the smallest/filler toys.

Now my kids don’t have to cry because Mommy threw all their toys away.  For one month a year they will be able to revisit them!

Silly huh?

#349- Ghosts of Christmas Past (3)

Here are my Keith Haring gingerbread men.  Sorry they aren’t super creative.  I simply didn’t see the point since two minutes after baking I had already bitten off their heads!  My kids stuck all their left over Halloween candy on their gingerbread men.  Let’s just say after all the chocolate melted, they weren’t exactly photo worthy.  But a Kit-Kat to the head couldn’t have been such a bad way to go!

It’s 11pm and as usual everyone is already tucked in as visions of sugar plums dance through their heads. Visions of sugar plums or running gingerbread men?

Hmm.  Not sure. All I know is I’m ready to join them!

Nighty night!


Join us on Facebook:  Be Creative Mary



I totally asked for it.  Tonight, as we were sitting down to dinner, I asked the kids what they thought I should title my post for today. I asked if they had any good names for my dog I created out of driftwood.

“Dog?” asked my daughter.  “That doesn’t look like a dog. That looks like a fox!” and from there my kids circled the dinner table singing “What Does a Fox Say?”



Does everyone know this video by now?  The kids are going wild for it.  It is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever seen or heard, but just like a car accident, I just can’t help but peak and maybe sing a little!

#326- Beginning to take form (1)

IMG_8616 IMG_8609

So that is it. Even though I designed it to be a chevron dog it is now 100% fox.

Funny how that works.

Moving on…

Last night I posted my Granny Chic winter head wrap. It was too dark to get a photo of it on, so I took one this morning.

IMG_8547b IMG_8542

This was wild.  My mother has my self-portrait from day #1 of my creativity challenge.  I didn’t put two and two together, but as I was walking out of her house I saw it and thought to myself “this is totally freaky.”  I inadvertently created the same wreath for my head as I had in my painting over 300 days ago.  I had no intentions.  The wreath in the painting was a floral wreath I wanted to wear to my first holy communion.  My mother, still in shock that I didn’t want to wear the veil like all the other little girls allowed me to wear a crown of baby’s breath.  Totally not what I wanted.  I wanted red roses, mums and sunflowers just like I had seen at a hippy wedding back then.

Hey the heart wants what the heart wants. Now I have my wreath!

2013-12-01 12.21.58 IMG_8574b

On my car ride home today I created a more tame version of a head wrap.  This prefab was still a little to simple for my taste, so I added some yarn and sequins.

IMG_8556 IMG_8565

I also had enough time to make two other large flowers. I was going to add them to my scarf, but then I remembered some of these hats I had at home.  Now I have some overly-bedazzeled  head-gear.

I am ready to take on the cold!


Join me on Facebook:  Be Creative Mary




Welcome to my on the road studio or as some may call it, my lap!

Off to visit family this weekend to ring in the holiday season.  This means if I want to create anything for my 365 challenge, it’s going to be inside a car!


This is a horrible photo taken in the car, sorry about that, but I wanted you to see what I was working on today.  This was a perfectly cute head wrap designed to cover your ears and head to protect them from the cold.

I have a bunch of them.  I love them.  They get the job done.  They keep me warm and they look nice.

Well, if you’ve ever caught my blog, then you know I just can’t leave well enough alone.  This green head wrap was just a tad bit too boring for me…so I had to kick it up twenty notches!


I know, I know. You just don’t know what to say.  You are thinking what the heck happened???  Well for one thing, I was in the car too long, but for another, I just really like crazy bright stuff!

When I was in college someone told me my style was “grandma chic”.  I thought that might be because 90% of my wardrobe was/is thrift store purchases, but they went a little further. They meant it because I’d rock a grandpa cardigan(1960’s) with a 1970’s wide collared shirt, maybe some 80’s corduroys  and wrap it up with a big bow in my hair.  Add the obnoxiously bright colors that I’m attracted to and I can understand where they might not think I’m from this millennium or planet for that matter!

Yeah, I’ll own that.  You can call me Grandma chic!


IMG_8403So today I armed myself with a spool of olive-green thread, a needle, scissors, beads, sequins, ribbon, novelty yarns, vintage trim, and felt. I sewed and sewed and sewed, until there wasn’t any space left!

It reminds me of the vintage floral bathing caps from the 1960’s.  Secretly I always wanted on of those!

I only got a photo of my crazy hat half-way through. I finished tacking everything on later on in the night and it was too dark and too late to get a good photo.  I will have to take a pic and add it to a future post.

I am now a proud owner of a ridiculous bonnet.  I’m pretty sure if I lose it,  people will know who to return it to and I most likely don’t have to worry about anyone wanting to steal it!

Just wait for the car ride home…my scarf is looking a little drab….


Join me on Facebook:  Be Creative Mary



I just recently purchased these wire chairs.  They are inspired by Harry Bertoia who designed a similar chair in 1952.

My thought with these was easy maintenance.  I am so very tired of scrubbing off tomato sauce, rice, and who-knows-what from the bellies of my wooden chairs.  I can hose these down if necessary!

I’m a big fan of  everything mid-century modern. I simply can’t get enough!

I’ve had one problem so far.  These chairs came with black chair pads.  I really don’t like the black.  It gives the chairs an office furniture feeling.

I don’t like them.  So I might as well play with them right?  I have nothing to lose.  I’m going to replace them anyway.


I grabbed a can of primer and immediately got rid of the black.


I reached for my big box of handmade stamps and started to play.  I had no idea what I wanted which isn’t the best way to go into a project…


I wound up doing a little bit of everything!


The pads are cute.  But in hindsight, I wish I made them all one pattern.  It’s just too busy.

I have so much color and art going on around the house, that I actually like this dining area all white and tranquil.

I think these may be a very short-term addition.  Only in creating the opposite have I affirmed my desire for white simplicity.

Hmm…I wonder if I have enough of that primer left?


Join me on Facebook:  Be Creative Mary


#292-finding shapes in the clouds (1)

I’d like to share with you a fun little tradition my daughter has started in our household.

My daughter had asked if I’d create zen-tangles with her at bedtime in lieu of bedtime stories.  She’s a super reader, so if she wanted to switch it up a little, I was game.  Very quickly, I realized these drawings were not zen-tangles.  They were something else.

My daughter and I take turns each night.   One person draws a strange shape on a piece of paper, the other person gets to decide what they think that shape should turn into.  We then take our collection of Sharpies and doodle together to create that character.

I’ve decided to call the game “Finding Shapes in the Clouds”.

OK.  So now that you understand the premise, you can play along!

#292-finding shapes in the clouds (7)

What do you see in this shape?  Me, I see a bunny rabbit…

#292-finding shapes in the clouds (2)

but my daughter saw a duck in a beret!

#292-finding shapes in the clouds (10)

How about this one? One of the United States?  Maybe a ski boot?

#292-finding shapes in the clouds (3)

I saw a Dorito-eating monster washing them down with Coca-Cola. Notice the yellow teeth?  It’s a naughty monster.  A naughty monster wearing nine Converse sneakers!

#292-finding shapes in the clouds (8)

Hmm…what do you see?  A deformed ear?

#292-finding shapes in the clouds (4)

How about a dog with a goatee named Calliope!

#292-finding shapes in the clouds (9)

#292-finding shapes in the clouds (11)

My daughter instantly saw a Toucan bird filled with exotic plumage…that’s what you were seeing too right?

#292-finding shapes in the clouds (6) #292-finding shapes in the clouds (5)

These are two more we did, but I don’t have the blank shape for them.


My daughter can be quite stubborn.  I am not allowed to teach her anything.  She just says “I know Mom…I know….”

She doesn’t know everything!  That is what is making this project great.  She gets to call the shots part of the time and the other part of the time she is under the illusion that we are simply simultaneously doodling.

Not true!  There’s way more to it.

On the turtle, she mimicked three different patterns I was working on; a checker-board, brocade and line motif.   I don’t even know if she realized where I left off and she began…(shh! I got to teach her a little bit about pattern!)

On the fish I taught her how to draw a scale or petal pattern.  On the Toucan bird I taught her the Herringbone pattern. All together, I’m teaching her to use her imagination and look for things that the average eye may not see.

It’s brilliant!

My daughter just thinks we’re doodling but secretly she’s learning.

Best of all, I win because I have found a small little moment of the day, where I can bond with my daughter.

Shh, don’t tell her!


Join me on Facebook:  Be Creative Mary