It’s Been Awhile!

Hey there blogland!  Holy cow it’s been awhile since I’ve wrote a blog post…about 7 months or so!  I guess I just got kind of burned out & wanted to try to step away from being on the computer so much.  I’ve also been trying to get some sort of focus on eating right, exercising (still having a hard time with this one) & maybe putting myself back out there after a 3yr. break to try to find myself a mister.

IMG_2382I have been pretty good about the eating right.  For the majority of the year I was doing Jenny Craig, but I just kind of his a plateau and would lose and gain the same few pounds.  So, I finally just nixed that a month or more ago…it was just kind of expensive and honestly, I was burnt out on the food because I’m a creature of habit and was eating the same select meals every week and it just got old.  So I’ve kind of switched things up on my own and been trying to eat more of a high protein/low carb diet and I’ve actually started losing again.  I was looking through pictures the other day from back in February of this year when my parents visited and I’ve actually lost about 25lbs since then.  I didn’t really notice a difference until seeing pics side by side.  Plus, I also ordered myself a few outfits and purposely ordered a size smaller than normal kind of as a goal to get into, but to my surprise the smaller size fit already.

I really need to get into the habit of exercising again.  I was doing really well for about a month and doing the treadmill everyday and getting in at least a couple miles.  Sometimes, I’d even jump on for a second go of it later on in the day if I was really bored.  The only reason that sidetracked me though was a pair of dress shoes that I wore for a weekend that tore the hell out of my feet, making it impossible to wear socks and tennis shoes because it was so painful and bandaids and tape didn’t stick to the backs of my heals to try to get any relief, so that left me to get out of my habit.  Now I just need dig down deep and find the motivation and desire to jump back in the game.  It is hard though…I’m the first to admit, I hate to exercise….at least at first.  I’ll get there eventually though.  At least I managed to get through Thanksgiving without too much of  a gain!

Lets, see….what else have I been up to??  Oh yes, I have been working on a three piece painting for a friend of mine that they commissioned me to design and paint.  It’s Star Wars themed, so of course this brought me great joy as I’m a Star Wars geek. I tell you…I have never in my life had such a fun time painting.  I was so excited with each phase, from coming up with rough sketches of possible layouts of the symbols to just getting the first coat of paint on the canvas!  I even did miniature magnets of the designs first to make sure they looked just right.  Hopefully, I’ll be getting some more magnets done and in my Etsy shop if you’re interested for a little Star Wars art for your refrigerator!  Promise they look pretty bad ass!  Each canvas for the large wall hanging I was working on was 12×36, so its 3ft x 3ft if you put them all together.  I’ve had a couple of the painting done for about a month or more now, but I was having trouble getting the 3rd piece drawn to scale.  It’s so much easier to draw tiny than on big scale for me.  But the other night, the creative bug hit about midnight and when it hits I have to jump on it, so I did some sketching…wasn’t happy…took a pen and when over the pencil sketch to try to make some corrections and finally got it to look just so and then I took my exacto knife and cut myself out the stencil, so I wouldn’t mess up the main canvas, as those suckers aren’t cheap.  Then a few hours later I was all done.  A little sad that they are done & might even be sad to see them go to a new home, but I’ll also be happy knowing my art work is hanging in someone else’s house and that they love it.

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IMG_2410I would be totally happy to duplicate these paintings again if anyone out there is interested.  Just shoot me an e-mail at thelittleblackraincloud@yahoo.com or visit my etsy shop and put in a request for a custom piece and we’ll get you going!

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#SorryNotSorry

LittleRainCloudImageHELLOOOOO??  Anybody out there?  I’d say sorry I haven’t posted for awhile, but I’m not. I had just realized I was spending way to much time on my computer, iPhone, iPad & whatever other technology based gadget I could get my hands on!  So much so, I wasn’t getting out and doing anything on the weekends because by the time I walked away from my computer or whatever I was using, my weekends were gone, which left me not feeling so great because I wasted so much time.  Recently, I banned all electronics to my office area, so if I want to be on the computer, I have to go to that room if I want to look something up, rather than having it attached to me from the time I get home from work until I go to bed.  I’ve noticed it’s helped me mix things up a bit.  Now I’ll come home, make dinner and then sit down and enjoy it while I watch a random episode of something on the t.v.  Then I’ll head to the office to do a quick check of things online and then since I’m in my office where I have all my art supplies, I’m more prone to playing around with my paints and brushes vs. starring at the computer screen, which I already do Mon.-Fri. from 9-6.

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I’ve also been trying to work on a few sketches and come up with some new ideas of things to paint.  You wouldn’t think it would be so hard to come up with ideas, but sometimes it my mind is as blank as my canvas when it comes to new ideas.  Kinda of like writers block, I guess.  Any of you out there have any ideas of things to paint that you may be interested in if they were in my shop?  Feel free to throw out some ideas!  I’m always game for a new challenge!

I am pretty excited that I have had a couple of sales over in my etsy shop over the past couple of weeks! I think I screamed when I got my first actual sale & then a week later I had a request for a custom painting!  Made my week!  I’ve even had some other e-mails for possible requests in the future….LOVE!  I’m my own worst critic & you have no idea how thrilled it makes me feel when someone likes my work!

Besides disconnecting from technology a bit & painting, I’ve also been busy blogging believe it or not.  Where are these posts, you ask?  Well, currently they are all saved in draft mode & will be published over on i.seekissimmee.com sometime in the coming week.  You’ll see me under the “Who’s Next” section if you go over to the website now.  I did the same thing last year and enjoyed it so much, I signed up a year ago for another crack at being their guest blogger for a week.  I love writing up all those posts, but man am I glad I’ve got them all done and out of the way.

Anyways, I just thought I’d pop my head in for a bit & let you know I’m still alive!  Just been too busy getting messy playing with my paints lately & enjoying it!  Well, I will do my best to write a little more regularly, but I can’t make any promises!  Have a great weekend y’all!

Feelin’ the Love!

As I’m not one of those people that celebrates Valentine’s day, as it seems like a “Hallmark” holiday to me, I am one to celebrate unbirthday’s & today is mine!  Yay!  Well, let me tell you…it’s been a pretty darn good unbirthday, besides the 4 separate conference calls I had to be on today & not being able to get much else done inbetween….I definitely felt the love this week, even though it was all Valentine’s Day themed…haha.  Earlier in the week, I walked into my office to find an earlier Valentine from by bestie that was super adorable.

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See…I told you it was super adorable!  I cleared out the chocolate this week and then hung up the lid to the tin on my bulletin board.  I love me some old school Mickey & Minnie!

Then yesterday afternoon, before I closed up the office at work, my student worker came in and worked her magic on the front office and decked it out in pink and red decor all over the place.  It definitely caught everyones eye today!

IMG_1403And then….when I got into work this morning there were homemade cupcakes from Miss Decor & the other student worker, who is also Anti-Valentine’s day….she made heart shaped sugar cookies with black frosting and some had angry little faces on them…lol.  Cracked me up & they were pretty darn tasty too!  Then I walked into my office & had flowers, a handmade card & box of chocolates from my little decorator….such a little sweetheart!

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IMG_1411I’m not a flower person either, but these were super cute and had pink confetti hearts all over the flowers…ADORBS!  Then the card was just the icing on the cake.  Definitely felt the love today!  Thanks girlie’s!

 

Catch Up Time!

Holy smokes guys….it’s been a while since I’ve written an actual post!  So, I guess it’s time to play catch-up!  November 16th I packed my bags and headed home to Illinois for Thanksgiving for a nice 12 day vacation.  It’s hard to believe it was a month ago today that I was getting on that plane home.  Like they say…time flies!  Time flew by pretty fast when I was at home too!  It was a lot easier leaving and not crying my eyes out like I usually do when I leave, since my parent are coming to visit the first week of February!  YAY!!  Anyways, before I flew home I thought it would be nice to have some family pictures taken since we haven’t had any taken in years, so the day after I arrived, we headed out for pics down by the Mississippi River & then to my favorite park.  We lucked out & it was a gorgeous & warm day outside for that time of year….now a week later…it’s was in the 30’s, so when I say we lucked out, I mean it!  Here’s a few shots…

Mom, Chris (Not so little bro), Me, Dad & Sara (little sis)

Mom, Chris (Not so little bro), Me, Dad & Sara (little sis)
Sara, Jenn & Chris

Sara, Jenn & Chris

12.17If anyone back home reads this & is looking for a good photographer in the Burlington, IA area, you should check out SAS Photography & contact Sarah Schulz, as she does a wonderful job & has awesome prices!  Thanks again, Sarah!

After being a bum & gaining 10lbs from all that great home cooking, I headed home on the 27th.  I had a little bit of an annoying cough when I got on the plane & had been popping vitamin C all day like a crazy person, but by the next day or so I was back in Orlando it had turned into a full blown cold…Blah!  I blame the plane ride & all that recycled air.

So with being on vacation, being sick & busy with Christmas shopping…I just haven’t had the urge to write.  Seems like when I do have thoughts of things to write…its when I’m somewhere that I’m not near my computer, like on the ride home from work and totally space out and miss turns and such…yes, I do that.

I have managed to do a Disney park pretty much every weekend since I returned from vacation, so I can check out all of the Disney holiday goodness.  Like the lighting of Cinderella’s Castle….it was magical & oh so beautiful!  I took a video of the whole thing so you wouldn’t feel left out, but I can’t figure out how to post it here, so I will post pics, which just don’t do it justice!  🙂  We even experienced New Year’s the night I went as they were filming some sort of New Year’s celebration and had the clock on the castle set to midnight for filming…it was kind of comical.

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IMG_1012Along with enjoying all the lights & events in the parks, my friend Eric & I have been resort hopping and checking out the lights & decor in all of the Disney resorts.  They all have lovely trees…one had a life size Gingerbread house in the lobby that they of course were selling gingerbread cookies out of.  Another had the biggest freakin’ Mickey Mouse wreath I’ve ever seen!

DisneyChristmasNow last weekend, my friends Eric & Jay took my out for and AWESOME dinner at Epcot at Tutto Italia, which included specialty seating for the Candlelight Processional AND V.I.P. viewing area for the fireworks show Illuminations.  I didn’t get any pics that night, as I was just having way to much fun.  There are several videos on YouTube of the Candlelight Processional…I went to the one that was narrated by James Denton (Actor from Desperate Housewives).

Now this afternoon I have plans to go with my Disney companions to go to Mickey’s Jammin’ Jingle Parade at Animal Kingdom & then we are hopping over to the Osborne Family Light Spectacle at MGM (Currently known as Hollywood Studios, but I refuse to call it that like any diehard Disney fan)! 🙂

Well, that pretty much wraps things up to what’s been going on in my world lately.  Got all presents wrapped and shipped out yesterday, so all that stuff is out of the way.  I have gifts for friends sitting here to hand out this coming week.  I’m kind of bummed I’ve only gotten one Christmas card so far this year.  I always loved Christmas cards…I only send out a few anymore since I never seem to get any back.  I was super excited to come home Friday though and found my landlords had left my yearly Christmas present hanging on the door, which this year was the cutest cookie jar…filled to the brim with cookies & a cute jar full of peppermint taffy.  They are the best!

IMG_1022Well…I’m going to call it a wrap!  Let’s hope the writing bug keeps flowing this week, so here’s until next time!

Cheers!

It’s the Little Things: Painting & Halloween Fun

I thought it was time to do a little things post, as I’ve been slacking since the link-up over at Hello Hue hasn’t been up for a little while, but it’s back up again, so it you’d like to join in and do a “Little Things” post you can link up here.

I got the creative bug this week and did a few paintings for my shop.  Loved how this Cherry Blossom painting turned out.  I did it on a 3×3 canvas & turned it into an adorable magnet.  I’m currently working on a 10×10 version for the BFF since she liked it so much.

I went to Hobby Lobby this afternoon and literally everything was 50% off….it took so much to just walk out with one thing!  All of the framed pics and canvas paintings were 50% off and I was just drawn to the “Bird on a Wire” pic.  I walked away about 5 times, but kept going back and finally an old woman walked up behind me and said, “That’s a good one, I think you should get it”, so who am I to argue with an adorable old woman, so I got it! 🙂

On Halloween, my adorable student worker came in all decked out in her Snow White costume and totally decked out my front office in decorations and passed out candy!  Love my student workers…they are adorable and so full of energy.  So thankful for them…they brighten my day.

Thursday morning I get to work and a Nutella truck is in the parking lot, passing out free Nutella and waffles covered in Nutella.  YUMMO!

Other things Not Pictured:

Making plans for some Disney fun for the next two Saturdays in a row!

Seeing pics of my BFF all decked out in full on Princess costume in order to get some $2 Chipolte!  And then getting a phone call that night to hear a funny story….yep, it’s the little things that make my day!

Seeing another good friend post in excitement that he got a role in the t.v. show “Vampire Diaries” and is in Altanta Facebooking status updates from the set in excitement.  So proud of him!  He’s going to be a famous in no time he’s so talented!

It’s Novemeber…15 more days until I get to fly home for a week and a half!!  Can’t wait!

Weekend Wrap-up

Whew….that weekend went by fast!  It was a pretty mellow week this week.  It was actually kind of slow at the office….hence the below “We’re Bored & Happy it’s Friday” photos.  It was entertainment for a good 10 minutes or so…

Then on Saturday, it was just so darn gorgeous outside….I went to Disney!  It’s finally that time of year where we are getting the cooler weather…low 80’s…haha!  I went in the afternoon & then had some friends meet me there who are Disney nuts too!  We had a good time running around and doing a few rides like The Haunted Mansion, The People Mover, Pirates of the Caribbean, etc…  We snuck in a few others things here and there as well, but the parks were insanely busy for this time of year!  We saw 60 minute wait times for rides like Peter Pan….CRA-ZY!

Disney is all decked out in Halloween decor & was super cute.  You can see in the photo above of a Minnie Mouse holding a pumpkin statue and then of course the adorable pumpkin Mickey wreath.  I was a little hungry since I ate brunch and by 3:30 I was wishing I would have just waited and had lunch.  Since there is a bit of a Biggest Loser weight loss competition going on at work that I’m in on, I tried my best to be good.  I ended up opting for a delicious fruit tart….yes it was as good as it looks!  It was hard opting for that vs. the hot cinnamon roll the size of a plate that smelled out of this world, but I was totally satisfied with my fruit tart as it was very yummy!

Well, that pretty much sums up my weekend in a short and sweet way.  I was pretty much a bum today, other than for some light cleaning & laundry & of course the Sunday grocery run at Target, where I always find other things to buy besides groceries!  Perhaps, I should limit my Target run to once a month! 🙂