Monday, April 30, 2007

Color Me Happy

Don't you love being a parent?

A Sunday afternoon with brand spankin' new markers and a chocolate ice cream cone equals utter bliss to my little guy and I.

Ah, to pretend to be a child again...
Going back for a few hours via ice cream and markers...

"Mama! May I have some orange juice please?!"
Then I wake up.

A new week.

Back to reality.

As an aside, what really astounds me is the fact that my three year-old actually requested to have his work uploaded onto my blog!

Ah, the ways of a child growing up in the twenty-first century...

So, here it is:

Oh what the heck, here's another of his:


Saturday, April 28, 2007

Where is the line drawn?

So, where does craftiness intersect with art?

I'm puzzled by that.

Technically, I "doodled" on this card.

I designed it.

Does that make it art?

When does a paper-crafter become an artist?

What defines an art piece?

The composition?

The complexity?

I've seen abstract paintings that are considered art which look like the work of a preschooler.

Is it just a $3.00 greeting card or a $30.00+ mixed media assemblage?

I've seen both ends of the spectrum from equally successful artists.

Is it just the marketing?

Who defines it?

The artist?

The buyer?

Is it different for everyone?

What's your opinion?

Sure, I've had my work published in magazines a few times. Nothing to speak of really...

Sure, I've sold a few paintings. Some assemblages on canvas too... (See below.)

Sure, I've been "hired" countless times to create things for people...

Anyone could do this stuff though... It's not complex.

What defines an artist?

Below, is the definition from
a person who produces works in any of the arts that are primarily subject to aesthetic criteria.
a person who practices one of the fine arts, esp. a painter or sculptor.
a person whose trade or profession requires a knowledge of design, drawing, painting, etc.: a commercial artist.
a person who works in one of the performing arts, as an actor, musician, or singer; a public performer: a mime artist; an artist of the dance.
a person whose work exhibits exceptional skill.
a person who is expert at trickery or deceit: He's an artist with cards.
Obsolete. an artisan.

—Synonyms 1. Artist, artisan are persons having superior skill or ability, or who are capable of producing superior work. An artist is a person engaged in some type of fine art. An artisan is engaged in a craft or applied art.

I'd love to hear your thoughts...


A girl who plays with paper and doodles on stuff...

Friday, April 27, 2007

Divine Picks

Do you dig preppiness? Elegance? Fabulous picks that one shouldn't be deprived of?
If you haven't already, check out my other blog, Divine Pick of the Day. You'll be glad you did. Honest.

Simplistic yet true...

Briefly Weightless...

Stephen Hawking.
Such a brilliant individual.
Weightless eight times.
My heart is so happy for him.
Bound for forty years, he finally felt brief freedom!
Adore this book of his.
Have it around here someplace.
Read it cover to cover.
Check the article HERE.

At this hour?!

Five-Seven-Five be gone!

'Nuff said.
Goodnight all.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Want a blog-exclusive sneak peek?

As some of you may know, (My baby.) is launching in the very near future. In the coming week, I'll be showing some sneak peeks on my blog for all of you fabulous people!
However, Divine Papers is changing a bit... Don't get all up at arms- It's for the good, I promise.
Divine Papers is becoming a bit more upscale, shall we say. Sure, I'll continue to sell what I do on Etsy. I just adore that community. I've met so many wonderful artists. The new site's products will be a bit different though. Preppier. Timeless. Elegant. ~Everything I love. The above is a new greeting card design from the Stitched Label Collection. It's all I can show right now... Check back later for more...
(Shameless self promotion over.)
I have soooo much to do this weekend! Sooo much work to do on my site. It's completely designed from scratch and built by yours truly. The products are designed and created by yours truly. Photography? Mine. All verbiage on the site? Mine. I'm a wearer of many hats in this little endeavor... :) That's a good thing though. I feel human beings should never stop learning. Never stop gleaning knowledge from each and every possible subject he or she may be interested in. Life is short y'all. Live in the moment and make your dreams happen now.

Look what I found in my mailbox...

I just wanted to share two more cards from artists across the country mailed to Operation Hokie Hope. The first, is from Houston, Texas and the second is from Joan in Indiana.

Thank you so very much ladies for your participation in this important cause.

Remember everyone, it's not too late! If you'd like to send a greeting card to the Operation Hokie Hope cause, please mail it to:

Operation Hokie Hope

2308 S. 17th Street

Rogers, Arkansas 72758

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask me!

On its way to me...

I just had to take a moment and share this fabulous card that Renee' Dezember created for Operation Hokie Hope! She thoughtfully photographed it for me before she sent it!
Thanks Renee'!

I need your help...

So, those of you who know me well know how big of a stash of art supplies I have... I'm trying to get organized, but I need your help. I just purchased three of these fabulous containers, and I need help deciding what to put in the one on the far left... I have silk flowers in one and stamps in another one... What do I have that will fit in the last one??

What's in it for you?

I'll tell you.


Yep, a deliciously fabulous one, at that...

Sooooo, this delicious RAK will be bestowed upon the person who gives me my favorite usable suggestion of what to put in the third container...

Thanks in advance for your help!

(Please excuse the blurry photo. Less than desirable lighting and my camera are not friends.)

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

And yet another...

So, this Haiga thing is fun.
Addictive really.
It combines much of what I enjoy.
Photography? Check.
Writing? Check.
Adding a little Photoshop goodness here and there? Check.

Gotta love that.

Totin' it Amy Butler style...

So stoked here.
Just had to share this.
My new purchase.
To tote my crafty notions around in when I work away from home...
Amy Butler has now crossed over into the scrapbooking world as well.
Gotta love that.
More later.
I have 90 cards I must ship out to a shop tomorrow!
Must. Have. Starbucks. Now.
(A Venti Peppermint Mocha, to be exact.)
It's going to be a late night y'all...
P.S. I know I owe emails to many of you- I've been crazy-busy lately, so please bear with me and know that you'll receive a reply ASAP! Thanks so much for your patience!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Operation Hokie Hope

(Click on the Operation Hokie Hope link at right for info, for those of you just now hearing about it!)

Okay everyone, please remember that the deadline to mail your card for OHH is May 1st! It's quickly approaching and I would love to send as many physical representations of our prayers and thoughts of hope that I can to those at Virginia Tech. I know you do too.

Also, thank you soooo very much to those of you who have posted about the cause on your own blogs and in your online groups. I really, really appreciate it. What a wonderful age we live in where knowledge has the potential to be spread instantaneously. Amazing, isn't it?

Send your cards to:

Operation Hokie Hope
2038 S. 17th Street
Rogers, Arkansas 72758

If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at

Lastly, please feel free to use the OHH image I created at the link in furthering the cause.

So, this is me being poetic... Again...

So, I thought today's earlier post needed a friend...
So here it is... They belong beside each other, don't you think?
Click to enlarge, if needed.
P.S. See today's earlier post for my uber-uncharacteristic delve into photo poetry.

Poetry?? What the &%@#??

So, I was surfing through different blogs last night, and low and behold, rediscovered a form of poetry which I actually received an "A" on in AP English waaaay back in high school... Haiku, it's called. I know you've heard of it. What I hadn't heard of was something called Haiga. Though I'm sure I learned about it during that little unit in class, I have since forgotten. (Sorry Ms. Fields. Lol.) Anyway, it's like Haiku, but with a photo. Sooooo... Being the artsy-creative person that I am, I grabbed my camera and went outside. Unfortunately, I do not have a green thumb, so the only thing worth taking a photo of in my yard was this dandelion... So, I did what I could with what I had... Maybe my brain was way out there and no one gets this? Or maybe it's just too simplistic that it's laughable? Ah well... It's my first (~And most likely last... Lol.) crack at Haiga- I suppose I can't be tooo hard on myself, now can I?
Anyone know anything about poetry want to take a crack at critique?? Go ahead. I have a hard shell. I can take it. :)
Happy Tuesday ladies and gentlemen.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Vintage Made New...

My sweet mother left this fabulous (~And super long! Lol.) comment on my blog... Rather than "approving" the comment, I thought I'd share it here instead:

Nothing fancy is required for a quick "handbag refreshening kit." For any metal trim, Brasso is great, but also MAAS brand All Metal Polishing Cream is totally awesome at returning any kind of metal to a sparkling shine.

For cleaning the outside, use GOOP original waterless mechanics hand cleaner (~Found in the automotive section of any Walmart, Dollar General, ect). Rub it on and wipe off with a damp cloth.

If you are blessed with a patent leather bag: For a super shine, rub patent leather with vaseline, let set overnight, wipe the purse off with paper towel in the morning, then buff with a dry cloth towel. Car wax is also an oldie but goodie at restoring shine. Shoe polish (~Not liquid, but the type in the little can.) is also terrific at restoring new life to any kind of leather. Just match the color of the shoe polish with the color of the purse.

To remove a mildewy smell, line bag with crumpled newspaper, place in a few charcoal briquettes, close back up and leave for a week or so. Also, you can try spritzing the interior with lemon juice and placing purse (opened) out in the sun.(test small area for color fastness first).

Can we say genius?? Thanks so much mom for your tips! They are much appreciated!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Random Photos of my House

I wanted to show you a bit of my style.
It's called champagne taste on a beer budget, as so eloquently defined by my mother. Lol. I suppose I've always had that kind of taste. I do what I can with what I have. I have to remind myself sometimes that hey, I'm only 23. I've got the mama thing down. The creative thing down. I have a lifetime to "build up" my happy little abode...

So, I'm content with where I'm at.

Just a lazy Spring afternoon here at the Gates house...

Catching up on the news...

Catching up on some creative time...

Catching up on custom orders...

Etsy has been down, so that's been a bit of a challenge...

I do, however, hear my new Jane magazine calling my name...

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Divine Pick of the Day

So, I've started a new blog...
Check it out HERE.
It will be updated each and every day!
What do you think?

Friday, April 20, 2007

Trying to be artistic here.

Executing a photo shoot and all...

With my new best friend.

It's vintage.

Ooh la la.

It needs some lovin.


Some polish of some sort.

But oh, I'm in love with it.

My dear mother gave it to me today.

I'm stoked.

Indeed I am.

Anyone have any tips on vintage purse care?

I'd love to hear 'em.

Operation Hokie Hope is really coming together. I really appreciate everyone who has emailed me and offered to spread the word. The more prayers and thoughts of hope that are sent, the better.

See the post below this one for more details about Operation Hokie Hope.

In synopsis:

Operation Hokie Hope is a greeting card drive meant to gather physical representations of our prayers and thoughts of hope for those at Virginia Tech. Please send your greeting card with your sentiment written inside to:

Operation Hokie Hope
2308 S. 17th Street
Rogers, Arkansas 72758

All cards received will be mailed in a large box to the appropriate parties at Virginia Tech.

Also, feel free to forward this information on and use the banner to help further this cause.

This weekend, I'll be working on orders for Divine Papers, but I'll report in again on Monday with an OHH opdate.

Blessings to all.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

All right ladies and gentlemen, here it is: The info for the greeting card drive I've been planning...

Please feel free to click on the photo to enlarge it, then save it and add it to your own blog or website.

Please spread the word.

As many prayers and messages of hope are needed.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

I was going through some old photos I've taken and ran across this one... I took it quite some time ago while the fam and I were having a picnic lunch in the park. Those are some pretty piled high sandwiches, eh?
Anyway, just wanted to share a happy moment with y'all... I won't be posting any new creations for a day or two as I am catching up on custom orders and some wholesale orders...
Also, and most importantly, tomorrow I'm going to be posting information about a greeting card drive I'm putting on for Virginia Tech. I'm going to gather as many cards as I can from scrapbookers and indie artists throughout the country and send them to the university. I can't fathom what they're going through. I mean, some of those people are my age! I think it would be nice to send a physical representation of our prayers and positive thoughts... Check back tomorrow for more info, please!
P.S. I will be photographing every single card I receive and sharing each of them on my blog, along with the person's name who sent it, and a link to each person's blog or shop.
Warm Regards,

Monday, April 16, 2007

Oh dear me, just how did this end up in my cart at Walmart today? I'll tell you how. Those darn complimentary frozen food bags at the end of the freezer aisles make it too tempting sometimes to smuggle something such as this through the entire store up to the front to check out... Especially if one says in a loud voice, "Oh, I hope our 100% fruit juice sorbet doesn't melt in this heat we're experiencing outside today!" Completely believable, don't you think?

Um. Yeah.

So, thank you Walmart, for providing those fabulous non-see-through paper bags for my ice cream. For some reason, I just feel better buying it when no one is able to glance over and see it next to the Healthy Choice diet dinners in my cart... Yes?

Sheesh. There's my daily calorie allowance all in a single pint.

Let's see... There are four (4) servings per container at 260 calories per serving... That's 1,040 calories in one pint.

Soooo... If a person, hypothetically of course, ate the whole thing and drank Diet Coke for the rest of the day, 1,040 calories for a day isn't too darn bad!


Sunday, April 15, 2007

Well, as some of you may know, I was contacted about a prospective media opportunity...
It seemed like a for sure kind of thing judging from the way the individual was talking about it.

Alas, it was not.

Sadly, I will not be appearing on The Martha Stewart Show.
(Well, any time in the near future anyway...)

Although, I feel honored to even have been contacted in the first place.

That, I am proud of.

Soooo... I'll continue on doing what I'm doing, enjoying life and having fun.

Just as I always have.

Only, without Martha. :)

The above photos are brand new things listed at my Etsy shop today!

Does anyone else that reads this have an Etsy shop?

If so, I'd love to check it out! :)

Also, if you're waiting on a proof from me, I'm working on it! :)

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Just some random stuff I've done lately.
I've been so busy with orders.
I am thankful though.
I always say that's the best kind of problem to have.
Today, my son said taking naps wasn't fun.
I told him to enjoy it while he could, because when he grows up...
He'll want to take a nap.
Like I do.
Then, I made a fort over his bed with a bedsheet.
That was cool.
More fun, I think.
He's asleep right now, in fact.
I think I'm going to take a quickie power nap too.
After all, I had to get up and work on orders at 6AM this morning.
On a Saturday??
Yep. I'm insane.
And tired.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Tell you what, I feel like I'm living in a wind tunnel it's so windy here today! Before I stopped by the market today, I had my hair tied back in a knot. As I walked through the double doors (which thankfully acted as a mirror this morning), I pushed up my large Jackie O style sunglasses and had wisps of hair sticking out all over the place! Lol. I'm sure I was a sight to see. Ah well. I contemplated just putting the sunglasses back down over my eyes and hiding behind them as I walked the aisles in the store. Sadly though, this is Northwest Arkansas, not LA, so I'm sure I would have gotten some strange looks wearing my sunglasses in the building...

Also, I just have to say I am so thrilled to have overheard a little girl in C's preschool class today say, "No, I, want to do it!" Now I know my son is normal. Just kidding. He's a great kiddo. Exceptional really. (Although I suppose I am a bit partial.) It's just nice to be reminded that I'm not the only parent on the planet whose three year old insists on doing everything himself. :)

As for me, I am sore beyond belief. My husband and I started the Power 90 program. Google it. It's good stuff. I'm sure my muscles are in culture shock right now though.

"What's this? Working out? ~Annnd drinking water??!!"


Now, in the world of Divine Papers...

The Filigree Fun Collection debuted today in my shop! (See photos above.)
Have a fabulous day everyone!