Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Friday Finds!

One of my New Year's resolutions this year is to make an effort to live life a little more green.  I've already made a few little changes, like switching to reusable grocery and produce bags, recycling as much as possible, eating organic, and I no longer drink bottled water.  So, I thought I'd make my resolution today's theme.  The store I'm featuring today is Garbage of Eden Design.  Stephanie makes really fun jewelry out of plastics that would normally just be thrown away!  Here is one bracelet that I particularly like...

Can you believe this is made from yogurt containers and plastic grocery bags?  Now, that's a nice-lookin' bracelet!  And you know I love it when artists give back too.  Stephanie donates 10% of your purchase to a variety of non-profit charities, and even lets you choose which one you'd like her to donate to!  Stop by and see her creations!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Cedar Rapids, Six Months Later.

This week was the first time I had been back to my hometown of Cedar Rapids since the floods happened.  It has snowed several inches, so my sister and I piled in a Jeep, and she drove me around to the areas that were hit pretty hard by the flooding.  It was so sad to see the heart of downtown, which was just starting to regain some life in it, as empty shells with 'for rent' signs in the windows, or where windows used to be.  Hopefully, with all of the hard work that people are putting in, the life can be put back into it once again.

This building was in an area near downtown.  It looked as though a lot of these businesses just moved out and won't return to the area.

This was a furniture store downtown, right across the street from the Great America Building.  I worked at the GAB durning the summers as an intern during college.

These next few are from the Time Check area...this area was hardest hit.  Some homes were marked for tear-down, some for repair.  Other than the handful of homes that had been renovated, the area was like a ghost town.

"We Will Rebuild"

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Friday Finds!

I love wine.  I love learning about it, I love the smell of it, and most of all, drinking it!  So this week's Friday Finds is dedicated to a few wine finds I've stumbled upon on Etsy.  The first is a seller that takes old wine bottles, flattens them in a kiln, and gives them a new life as a cheese serving platter!  Wine and cheese go great together, so how clever to make a serving tray out of a wine bottle.  And she has even etched this one with a nice design.  The seller is JellyBugArtworks, and she has not only these wine bottle serving trays, but she also makes very pretty glass and gemstone jewelry as well.

Next on my list is 'wine bottle bling' brought to you by sassafrass2.  The holidays aren't over yet!  If you are planning on bringing a bottle or two of wine as a hosts' gift for a New Year's party, this knit cap and scarf is such a cute idea to dress up the wine bottle, and makes your bottle stand out from the bottles in wine gift bags!  Be sure to check out all of sassafrass2's other knit goodies in her store!

Last but not least on my wine-themed list of finds this week is this beautiful balancing wine bottle holder sold by boxes 'n' more.  He has made this piece using two different kinds of wood.  This would definitely be a conversation piece for your kitchen or dining room.  In addition to the wine bottle holder, he has a variety of very nice wood items, such as trinket boxes, wood valets, even earrings!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Friday Finds

So, I thought I'd try a new weekly post, called 'Friday Finds'. I've decided to do this for a couple of reasons. One, I'd like to blog more often than I do. Two, I am a member of Etsy, not only do I sell there, but I shop there as well! I find so many wonderful treasures that I'd like to pass on some of them to others. I also read several other blogs and sometimes find something that catches my eye, and would like to pass those on as well. So this week, with it being Christmas time, I've found (well, a friend sent me the link to) an Etsy seller that has the perfect gift for people absolutely obsessed with their animals! I include myself in that category. Actually, I'm probably at the top of the list in that category! Anyways, the sellers name is polymerpaws, and she makes little clay figurines of animals! She even welcomes custom work, just send her some photos of your pet! Even better than her cute figurines is that she donates 10% of all her sales to the Blue Ridge Boxer Rescue! Check her out!

Plaza Lights Photo Shoot

The holidays are right around the corner, and I was very excited for the lights to be switched on at the Country Club Plaza. I've never photographed them, so I wanted to take a stab at it this year. I went out on three seperate nights to capture the lights right after they switch on and right after the sun goes down. Its a very small window of time to get the perfect balance of beautiful blue sky vs. the bright lights, so I couldn't get all 3 locations shot in the same evening, so I had to do it in stages. I first did a pedestrian level shoot, wandering around through the crowds in the middle of the lights. The next shoot was across Brush Creek to get the lights from afar. Then for the final shoot I went up on top of a parking garage to get a more birds eye view. Here are some of my favorites, please enjoy!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

It's Fall!!!

Well, I guess fall is well under way, most of the pretty leaves are on the ground now!  I'm a little behind on getting this post up I guess.  Fall is by far my favorite season.  After a hot and sticky summer, the weather feels great, the colors are so pretty, I love sweaters, and I got married in the fall!  Unfortunately, I was sick during the best part this year (I am getting a flu shot next September for sure!), so I didn't get to venture out and photograph as much as I had wanted to, but I was able to make it out a couple of mornings for a little walk and managed to get some shots.  They were mostly taken at Shawnee Mission Park near where I live.  Here are a few of my favorites...Enjoy!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Photographers of Etsy Feature!

It's been awhile, huh?  After a few months off to work on getting my architecture license (my day job!), i have a little much-needed break, so I can get back to my other favorite thing, my photography!  

I wanted to take a minute to share a blog post that I have been featured in.  What a fun Halloween/Fall post!  Here is the link to see mine, and all of the other great works...

Here is the featured photo...

I also wanted to share a couple of photos from a recent trip to San Francisco & Napa that my husband and I took for our anniversary!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Art Unleashed 2008

I went to the Humane Society of Greater Kansas City's Art Unleashed event this past weekend, where my 'Luna' photo was up for auction.  What a great event!  This was the first year that I had participated.  The amount of people there was insane!  It was such a great turnout, and I was very happy to be able to be a part of it.  The event raised $70,000 for the animals at the Humane Society!

Above is the photo that was auctioned off.  Here's a little background on Luna.  My husband and I were out to eat at our favorite Mexican restaurant near downtown Kansas City.  It was the middle of winter.  When we came outside, there was this little kitten sitting in the entrance alcove, trying to get out of the cold, and trying to find someone to take her home!  Well, she went over and sat on my husband's feet, and would not let him leave without her.  He picked her up and she nuzzled into him!  Judging by how skinny and dirty she was, it was clear that she did not have a home.  And it looked like she had been hit by a car at some point.  So we wrapped her up in a sweatshirt, took her home and gave her a bath.  She was so excited to be out of the cold that she didn't mind the bath at all!  And, it turns out she was a white cat, not a grey one!  She has since made herself quite comfortable in our home, sleeping on the couch, pestering the other cats, playing with the dogs.  We are happy that she decided to adopt us that night!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Please Help Cedar Rapids, Iowa!

This is very upsetting to me. My hometown of Cedar Rapids, Iowa was hit with a record amount of flooding last week. The entire downtown area is underwater. This is the worst flooding in history. Never in a million years did I think something like this could happen there. Last I heard, over 24,000 residents have had to leave their homes. Cedar Rapids is only 120,000 people! The damage is now at an estimated ONE BILLION dollars! That is catastrophic for a city of that size.

They are going to need long-term help. Right now officials are still trying to sort things out, so if you are interested in helping, you can check the Cedar Rapids Gazette online ( and click on 'how to help' to see what they need right now. And please check back periodically to see how else you can help as they figure everything out. Of course there's always the Red Cross and the Salvation Army.

On a positive note, the residents have rallied and stood by each other, all pitching in to help wherever help is needed. The other day, I saw a photo of the nurses and doctors at Mercy hospital, dressed in scrubs, outside working to bag sand. That really hit me. I thought 'that's my city!' and was proud of them. My dad was telling me that last Friday, day two of the worst of it, during the 10 o'clock news there was a call for help. There were only 6 people helping to sandbag down at the water plant. After that call for help, a group of 1200 people marched down the street to help! I know, chills. So proud.

Anyways, if you can, please help out the residents of Cedar Rapids, and all of Iowa. It was a rough week for the entire state, and it will be awhile before everything is back to normal.

Also I wanted to mention, are the pets of Cedar Rapids. Kirkwood Community Collage has turned into an animal shelter. All of the displaced people can't bring their animals to the shelters that they are being sent to, so this is a place to take your pets and know that they are safe. Unfortunately, though, they are still pets that are out wandering around, waiting to be rescued from deserted homes and buildings and taken to a safe place. They need your help too. While PetSmart did their part and brought a truckload of supplies (which, by the way, when shopping for your pet at PetSmart, and they ask if you'd like to add a donation to your purchase, do it! They actually put it to good use!) they still need more. One charity that I have recently discovered is an auction to help the Cedar Rapids animal shelter, which was completely destroyed. Their website is...

I will be donating my 'Sunset Wishes' print for the cause, I hope they raise a lot of money!
Sorry for such a long post, but it's been a very rough week on everyone.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Feature on Etsy Profiles!

Check out my latest feature on!  Thanks, Sara!  And while you're at it, please check out her website at to learn a little more about her work as well!  

Since you've taken the time to stop by, I'll treat you to a photo of one of my sweet little bulldogs! 

Monday, June 9, 2008

First Theatre DONE!!!

Just got back from Little Rock, where my first theatre is now complete. I was kinda dreading seeing the final product, there was a lot of value engineering going on, and of course the first things that get cut are the finishes. But, I was pleasantly surprised by how it turned out. Even on a tight budget, the elements that didn't get V-E'd out had a lot of punch to them, and as a whole, I thought the interior looked great!