40 By 40: # 8 Take the Kids to the Drive-In

On Saturday, October 17th I had decided to take the kiddos to the drive-in theater.  Since moving to Sacramento, driving down 50 and seeing the large screens off to the side, I have been interested in going.  How many are even in existence any more?  I remember in my youth there was one outside of my tiny little Minnesota hometown, but it is a very fuzzy memory.

The kids decided which movie we were going to see.  There wasn’t much of a choice, so we ended up seeing Pixels…the one with Adam Sandler and the old 80’s video game characters.


Generally speaking, I don’t mind Adam Sandler movies.  And truth be told, I have had a crush on him since Wedding Singer and 50 First Dates.

So we got into the car and headed to the theater, completely unprepared. Next time we will have to bring lawn chairs, blankets and pillows.  Also, we will have to park more central to the screen.  It took forever to get through the line and the movie was about to start, so parking wasn’t ideal.  How did I know I should have gotten there more than 30 minutes early?

The movie wasn’t terrible and kids and we have a memorable experience.  We are definitely going to do this again.

drive in theater


40 by 40 #6 Get a New Tattoo

I am a little behind with updating my blog.  Life tends to get in the way sometimes, but that’s okay.  I have been learning to roll with the punches and trying not to sweat the small stuff…and it’s all small stuff.  I stole that last part.

I had been playing with the idea of getting a new tattoo for quite some time, which is why it made a relative early spot on my list.  I wanted to get something that represented me and what I want for my future.  I had been pinning all kinds of ideas onto my Pinterest board and frankly they were all over the place.  I have too many interests!!

I was talking with my coworkers about the possibilities and what I wanted to do. M.C. just mentioned an idea off the cuff and it really stuck with me.  That night I went home and drew out the concept… an infinity sign made from a paintbrush that was painting itself.  Kinda like the MC Escher print of the hands drawing themselves, Drawing Hands.

drawing hands

I decided I wanted to get it done that weekend.  So I took a half day off of work on Friday, October 2 and recruited my friend M. to go with me to the tattoo parlor.  I chose to go to Forever Tattoo in Sacramento, CA.  I have known many people who had work done there and it all turned out very nice.

Here is my tattoo artist, Ian Carder,  at work…

tattoo ian carder

That’s my arm.  I decided to get it on my left wrist.  The closer to my hand he worked, the more painful it was.  But it wasn’t all that bad.  I like to think I have a relatively high pain tolerance. (not really, I’m kind of a wimp)

He is an awesome tattoo artist.  He took my design that I created and came up with two possibilities that would work well: one that resembled my own design pretty closely and one he did that had more symmetry to it.  I liked both, but I went with the one I designed.  I love it!


This was the final result.  I really like how it turned out and it looks even better in person. That makes it my 5th tattoo and probably my favorite, although my cherries are a close second.  I celebrated with a few of my friends at Ironhorse with a glass of Monkey Knife Fight…yum!!

40 By 40: #9 and #10


It has been a very busy and productive Labor Day weekend!  On Saturday, Sept.5th with the help of my friend A., I was able to check off #10 on my list: shoot some guns at the shooting range.  I was nervous but really enjoyed the feel of the guns in my hand.  I shot a Ruger 22/45 (.22 caliber) with a red dot site first.  It was surprisingly light and the accuracy was confidence building. The next gun I shot was a Glock 19 (9mm).  That one was really fun, and I think my favorite out of the bunch. I also shot a Springfield Armory 1911 A1 (.45)  That one was okay, but I really liked the 9mm.

I had never really considered owning a gun of my own before, but it something that I could see myself doing in the future.  It was relaxing and used a lot of focus.  I could block out everything else while I was looking through the sight and trying to hit my mark.  Until someone down the way shot what sounded like a freaking cannon and even made my friend A. jump.

I will definitely go again, and maybe shoot some rifles or ARs.


On Sunday Sept 6, I did something that I was way more nervous about.  I jumped off the high dive at the cabana club. I was so anxious that I figured I should do it right away and get it over with so I could enjoy the rest of my afternoon.  So at 3:15 I marched over to the high dive with a small entourage and made my way up the ladder.  My friend’s daughter, who happens to be a life guard and was on duty, took it upon herself to announce my ascent and encourage the rest of the crowded to club to cheer me on.

I stood at the top contemplating what possessed me to ever put this on my list and seriously debated turning around and climbing back down.  But no.  I was committed.  My friends were watching, my children were cheering and strangers were smiling and clapping.

I went to the edge of the board, held my nose, and jumped in.  I felt like I was falling forever!  When was I going to hit the water?  Then splash!!!  And it was all over.  I had done it!  I conquered my fear and I think I will probably do it again.

Thanks friends for not letting me get out of it!

40 By 40: #3 Learn to Meditate

#3: Learn to Meditateheadspace

I guess saying that number 3 on my list is complete is a bit misleading.  It is really more of a practice, but I have started the act of meditating.

I choose to try this out by downloading the app Headspace to my phone, on recommendation of a friend.  It has a free 10 day trial before having to purchase anything, so I thought that this would be perfect for my purposes.  I started on 8/5/15 and completed it on 8/15/15.  Every morning after my first cup of coffee I settled myself on the couch and followed along with the guided meditation instructions given by a soft-spoken gentleman with a relaxing accent.  Each session was 10 minutes long and I was surprised  how quickly the time seemed to go by.

I found the first day to be very difficult.  I wasn’t sure what to expect and was trying too hard to rid my brain of the thoughts that were whirling around.  As I progressed day by day, I found it easier. I had to learn to let go and not try to control the thoughts but to let them come and go without dwelling on them.

I like the act of just taking some time to quite my brain and have a little solace before heading out the door to the crazy day ahead.  This is something that I think I will continue to do.

headspace 1

Thanks for stopping by to check on my progress.  Rest assured that I am tackling more of the items on my list and I will post more when they have been completed. Yay!

40 By 40

I have recently turned 39 years old.  Only one year away from the dreaded 4-0. Forty? How did that happen?  Didn’t I just graduate from high school? I have been reflecting on what that means and am going to make it less scary.  I have decided that I will embrace the last year of my third decade of life and try to a do a bucket list of sorts by making a list of 40 things I would like to do before I am 40. Nothing like bungee jumping or sky diving. No exotic travels. Just stuff that I don’t need a ton of money to do and /or can do with my friends and kids.  And as I love to make lists and cross off items as I accomplish them.  I will update my blog as I do them, therefore helping with accountability. So I started my preliminary list and think I have the final draft ready.  In no particular order, I present my… 40 by 40 list

  1. Use my blog that I started forever ago
  2. Open an Etsy shop for my paintings and crafts
  3. Learn to meditate
  4. Take a cooking class
  5. Read a “classic” novel
  6. Get a new tattoo
  7. Take a trapeze class
  8. Take the kids to a drive-in movie
  9. Jump off the high dive at the Cabana Club
  10. Shoot some guns at the shooting range
  11. Try a belly dancing class
  12. Visit the Monterey Bay aquarium
  13. Get certified as a personal trainer
  14. Apply to be on a reality tv show
  15. Host a dinner party and cook all the food myself
  16. Buy myself flowers just because
  17. Take a self defense course
  18. Finish the large paintings I started but left incomplete
  19. Submit art for publication
  20. Get a deep tissue sports massage
  21. Do a fun run (color run, mud run, etc.)
  22. Show my art in another local art gallery
  23. Have a boudoir photo session
  24. Practice yoga regularly for a month (and then hopefully longer)
  25. Write a piece of creative writing
  26. Learn to play the piano
  27. Get a Brazilian
  28. Take the kids go-karting
  29. Go to the farmers market under the bridge
  30. Sit at a coffee house and draw
  31. Try a dating website
  32. Apply for a business license
  33. Plant an orange tree for my patio
  34. Create a list of my awesome accomplishments, make it look arty and frame it.
  35. Find an online art gallery to add my art to.
  36. Go camping and learn how to use the camp stove
  37. Try a new hairstyle from Pinterest once a day for a week
  38. Go to Tahoe
  39. Go to Vegas
  40. Go to Hawaii

Whew!  That’s a lot to do in just one year.  I feel like it can happen and I’m looking forward to crossing items off my list.  I can already cross one of them off…number 1!  Using my blog.  Boom, Now I just have to keep this up.

I’m a natural!

Today was the last of three days of a screen printing class I took, just for funzies. It was an awesome experience with a great group of ladies. 

I learned how to prep a screen with emulsion, expose my image which was drawn onto acetate with an oil paint marker, rinse out the emulsion to expose the design and finally do some prints.

It was a stressful process.  There are so many things that can go wrong at any stage.  Although others had experienced some difficulties, I had a relatively successful experience.  My practice pulls were awesome and I wish they were on archival paper instead of newsprint.  I did get a couple nice ones on Bristol board which I will probably add some hand drawn elements to.

I really liked how the tank top turned out.  The positioning of the design is particularly pleasing.


And finally my tote bag.  I think I will be sporting my sketchbooks and pens in style.


So, I think I’m a natural. Most of my prints came out great.  I am interested in doing more of these but maybe skip making the screen from scratch.  The company that supplied all of the materials used in the class can actually send you a finished screen with a design you send them. Yay!

It’s gonna be a good year


I am starting out the new year with a show at a cute little art gallery. Being that it is my first show at a gallery and the fact that I am one of 2 featured artists, one could say I am a little excited.  I had a reception on second Saturday in January which went really well.  I witnessed the sale of 3 pieces, one of which is below:

Pictures never do these works justice. 

I was also published in three publications which is a first for this particular gallery, and definitely for me. The gallery sends out press releases for all their artists and I am the only one that had 3 picked up.  I got copies of 2 and still am looking for the third.  Here is the interview I did that went along with the press releases:

Super excited to see my name in print!

I am now working on a few more pieces to add to the show as I have another reception in February. 

I hope it goes as well as the January show did. 

I need to get more gallery shows.  How can I keep this momentum going?