Thursday, September 1, 2011

Back to School

The kids are back in school and there is a bit of a nip to the morning air. Summer is over. It's bittersweet.

This time of year always gives me the urge to do so "nesting." I've been organizing the mudroom and clearing out the clutter in all the closets and cabinets. I'm wanting to whip out the paint rollers and do some decorating, and even the rolling pin for some baking.

I read a lot of craft blogs created by other stay-at-home moms, and I am amazed at all they get accomplished. I'm stressed out about how long it's gonna take me to paint and put back together the mudroom, about how much of a mess and disruption that will be. At the same time, these moms are mixing up brownies, building dining tables, making wreaths, and keeping up with a daily blog all at the same time! Not to mention they have husbands and kids, which, in my house at least, require time and effort, too!

So, today I'm going to focus on getting some nesting done on my own time and try not to compare myself to those supermoms, which I will never be, clearly. I'll take a pic of my mudroom when it's finished.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

My Latest Art Work: Queen of Spades (Art Quilt)

This quilt can be seen through the month of August at The Queens of Arts Gallery at the back of the bead shop in Downtown Helena! It is part of The Material Girlz Portrait Collection.

This pic gives you scale, as well as a glimpse of my new short pixie haircut!

Friday, July 15, 2011


Be careful when you make the decision to place a person in a category. Deciding that she is that type of person. One of those. Each of us is so much more complex than a type. Each of us has something to offer. We can learn from one another if we choose to get to know one another.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Hello, Hello!

I have two art quilts due to a gallery today for a show, and I don't have them finished. Unless I get on it RIGHT NOW, they wont get finished. Yes, I've known about the deadline for months, and I have been so excited to have been given the opportunity to get work in my new medium out there and see what kind of feedback I get. I'm so loving FABRIC!!!!

So, why have I not gotten these quilts done, you ask?

Well, a few weeks ago, a young woman with a thick foreign accent knocked on my door and wondered if we or anyone we knew had a room she and her roommate could rent. Both young women are college students in Estonia and are in the U.S. for the summer selling books. They had been staying at the Motel 6 and were running out of money.

To get to the point, we took them in. And that decision, for me, meant I had to get downstairs -- a part of the house that I've allowed the kids to take over and destroy -- and clean and organize and prepare the two spare bedrooms and some decent living space for them.

It felt great to finally get that project done, but it took a while.

Then, after all the rain we have gotten this spring, the sun came out (and then so did I), and I realized that I had bed of shrubs and flowers that were becoming Little Shop of Horrors. I set out working on those, and the more I got into the gardening work, the more work I realized needed to be done. I"m still not finished with this project.

In the middle of this, I found out my in-laws were coming for a week. Not just the m-i-l and f-i-l...the ENTIRE CAREY CLAN. Seven of them. We were very excited, but that meant I'd better get a few other things done to make that visit more comfy for everybody.

Then, as if we don't have enough chaos in our home right now, we got a new lab puppy. Oh yea. The most destructive choice we could have possibly made right now. Yep. That's what we did.

The in-laws came in yesterday. We will have a fun week together. Everyone is out swimming, so I took the opportunity to stay home and see if I can't get motivated to make some art. So far, not so good. I just sit and stare, because so many other things are on my mind right now.

But we sure have a cute puppy.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Rain, Rain, Go Away

It has been raining in Helena day in and day out for WEEKS! A girl can't go mountain biking on wet trails. That's very uncool. And a girl doesn't want to go for a wet hike or run. It's just unfun!

School is out and we are all stuck inside going stir crazy.

I hate to complain, considering that some people are out of their flooded homes. I mean, that would REALLY suck. But comparing myself to others doesn't take away the fact that I'm going ape shit and desperately need some sunshine!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Talent Search

The last few days have been pretty exciting!

I thought life would calm down as soon as school was out, but nope!

BAsed on her head shot, Eliza got a call-back for the H&M catalog model audition, so yesterday we drove to Bozeman and she got to meet the photographer and have a mini shoot. She was awesome, and they loved her. I will be surprised if they don't choose her for the catalog!

Another great turn of events is that they noticed Caroline with her and said, "Are you the big sister?" and Caroline said yes, but that she was not the right height to apply. Then the photographer told her, "Well, we will be back next year and we'll get you then."

Caroline was thrilled. Although she is excited for her little sister, she was feeling a little left out of all the fun.

Then, we got back home just in time for Jamie and me to get ready for the Holter Museum's annual Art Auction. I had a small piece in the silent auction, so I was a little nervous about whether or not anyone would bid on it!

I was tickled when three people bid on it and it sold for $85!

Today I will be int he studio working on a piece for an upcoming gallery show of portraits. Mine will be quilt least that's the aim. I reserve the right to change my mind and collage, paint or mosaic a portrait if I decide to!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Swim Lessons for Grown-Ups

Wanna go swimming?

Today I am taking my first-ever swim lesson. I figured at 40, I might want to learn how to swim correctly, and put away my 30-year self-taught swim technique that resembles a dog-frog combo. I mean, it has gotten me from point A to point B for that long, but it ain't pretty!

But, alas, it is STILL raining! Pouring rain! And that has dampened (pardon the pun) my enthusiasm for this lesson, which I have been looking forward to for weeks! Okay, I know I'm going to get wet anyway. Duh. But the pool is warm water. The rain feels like it just thawed out before it splatted on my head.

I thought about calling it off and postponing for a nicer day. But I think I'll just go for it. I've been a fair-weather exerciser for so long and it has not been a good thing. I start every spring in terrible shape. I want to ride my bike and run trails and play with the kids at the parks, and I'm dying until about August. The pain, the lack of oxygen, the jiggle, the regret for sitting on my butt all winter long! By the time I get to feeling fit, the cold comes back and I begin my pseudo-hibernation again.


So bring it! Rain and all.

I'll hit the hot tub as soon as I'm finished!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Head Shots

This is our Eliza Paige. She is auditioning to be a catalog model for H & M clothing company, and this is her new professional head shot. Although she can be a little bit shy at times, she jumped up on the photographer's stool and worked that camera like she's been doing it her entire life. It was so much fun to watch her. There were several great shots, so it was hard to narrow them down to "the one."

From this photo, they will decide whether or not they want to see her in person. If she gets that far, she will go to Bozeman next Friday for an audition. I have no idea how many kids are trying for it, but I'm sure the number is way up there.

The next step will be for the few kids they choose to have the photo shoot at the end of the month in Glacier National Park.

We, of course, think our Eliza is the best choice. Even if they toss her head shot at first sight, she is our little model.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Lori In Chains

Okay, all I want to do is get down in my studio and CREATE!

But that's not exactly feasible.

My house is a wreck. The laundry pile is a mountain. There is no food in the pantry, or the fridge. The dogs need baths and exercise, as do I. Thank you notes need to be written and mailed. A pair of shoes needs to be returned. A check needs to be deposited in the bank. And most important, my daughters' talent show performances need to be directed and perfected.

I guess this makes me a desperate housewife.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Ode to Dad by Caroline Carey (age 11)


You shine so brite
You are as breezy as a kite.
You love, not fite.
You don't smell like shite.
You are most of the time rite.
You are the bestest dad.

(P.S. Your pants are kinda tight.)


Friday, May 20, 2011


Yesterday was sort of a big day for me. I took my Kokeshi doll to the Holter Museum of Art where it will be displayed and auctioned with 24 other cigar box art pieces by artists around the Helena area. This is the first time I have been asked to be a part of a group of artists and the first time I will have anything shown at the museum (except for the journals I have made and sold in the gift shop). It felt great.

My next arty adventure will be as a featured artist at the Queens of Arts Gallery for a portrait show. I plan to make a few portrait art quilts (or maybe pillows...or whatever my muse runs with) for this show in July. I believe that everyone is an artist, but deep inside, I LOVE being a "real" artist!


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Bicycle Totes

I made these cute totes with a bicycle vinyl fabric for the girls who went with me to Moab for my 40th birthday trip. I decided to also make the little zipper pouches to go with them.

I love this lining fabric I chose.
Here are my girls with their totes!

Cigar Box Kokeshi Doll

I was invited by the Holter Museum of Art to take a cigar box and make it into a work of art to be auctioned at their June fundraiser, "Havana Nights."

I made my cigar box into a Japanese Kokeshi doll.

The Japanese scroll inside says,
"In the cherry blossom's shade there's no such thing as a stranger." ~Kobayashi Issa

Friday, May 6, 2011

A Mother's Day Poem by Caroline Carey

Funny, soothing, pretty and outgoing
Mother of Eliza and Caroline (me)
Lover of children, puppies, and cookies
Who feels joyful, energetic, and fun
Who needs love, happiness, and fun
Who finds happiness in art, sewing, and children
Who would like to see a clean house, the Eiffle tower, and Rome
Who fears horror movies, snakes, and spiders
Who enjoys giving, acting, and Mountain biking
Who likes to wear her green sweat pants, stylish cloths and lots of shoes
Lori Carey

Thursday, May 5, 2011

New School Concerns of a 7-Year-Old

Today we went to the Catholic for a site visit, because we are considering enrolling our girls there for next year. Last night, when the girls couldn't get to sleep, I suggested they make a list of questions they might want to ask the principal at St. Andrew tomorrow. Here is Eliza's list of questions: (she is 7)

(written with her grammar and spelling intact)

1. What do the uniforms look like?
2. Do you get candy when you do something good?
3. is it fun?
4. Do we go to a Sunday School?
5. is the teacher nice?
6. can parents come to lunch with you?
7. Will I like the uniforms?
8. Will the kids in my class be nice?
9. do we go on field trips?
10. is there a music teacher?
11. do we go to difforent classes?
12. do we get holaday off?
13. how many reasseses do we have
14. do we have lockers?

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Life Purpose

What is the purpose of your life?

My ambition is dwindling to nothing, because I have come to realize that is it ego-driven, and that it is not the way to fulfill my purpose. I have learned that I am not the author of my life, God is. I am witnessing God doing HUGE things in the world right now, and beautiful things in my life.

All I want is to be some part of whatever He is up to in whatever way He wishes to use me.

That is my purpose.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Saturday, April 2, 2011

40 Life Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years #4

Life Lesson #4:
Give more!

Not only will it bless the people receiving,

but you will be blessed more than you expect!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

40 Life Lesson I've Learned in My 40 Years #6

Life Lesson #6:
Stay positive! Speak positively. Think positively. Look for the positive in situations. Discuss positive topics. Dwell on positiveblessings and possibilities. This one lessons may take practice, but it will POSITIVELY CHANGE YOUR LIFE!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

40 Life Sessons I've Learned in My 40 Years #7

Life Lesson #7:
Don't make assumptions.

You know what they say...and they are right!

Monday, March 28, 2011

40 Life Lesson I've Learned in 40 Years #8

Life Lesson #8: Journaling is a great tool to enhance your life, and adding art to your pages is even better. You learn so much about yourself through journaling, and self-awareness is an important personal attribute to attain. Secondly, your experiences are observed more closely and thought about more deeply when you are putting them on paper. It forces you to take your time, slow down, notice the little things. Bring a pencil, some watercolors, and your favorite pens on vacations, hikes, ballgames, and even trips to the coffee shop. Also, you get to relive the experiences as often as you want when you look back on your journals. Another great bonus is that your children and grandchildren will have a personal part of your life experience told from your own hand. Wouldn't you love to have your grandparents' journals?

Sunday, March 27, 2011

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years #9

Life Lesson #9:
When you have had a confrontation with someone and later you wish you had said something you didn't think of then, remember that there is no rule that says you can't still say what you want to say. Call them up and say it. There is no statute of limitations on speaking your piece. Say it loud and say it proud.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years #10

Life Lesson #10:

In order to move on, you must forgive yourself.
If there are any others left unforgiven, forgive them, too.
This is for your sake, not theirs.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Thursday, March 24, 2011

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years #12

Life Lesson #12:

The best memories, the most important times in our lives,
are the ones that are shared.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years: #14

Life Lesson # 14:

There are people who come along in your life who are constantly complaining and asking for advice, but then when you try to help them or offer advice (see Life Lesson #32) they have a million reasons why it won't work. Then you get frustrated because the person is sucking the life out of you and won't do anything to better their own life, so you get angry with them and reaffirm their root problem, which is their lack of self-esteem, which then gives the cycle more fuel to continue. So, it's better to let these relationships die a natural, painless death, or else keep them at arm's length.

Monday, March 21, 2011

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years: #15

Life Lesson # 15:

Everyone sucks from time to time. (Air travel brings out the worst in most of us, which I just witnessed!) But I believe that people, for the most part, are doing the best they can with what they have -- or don't have. We all just fall short sometimes.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years: #16

Life Lesson #16:

Every now and then a girl needs a day to do absolutely nothing.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years: #17

Life Lesson #17:

The Mexicans have got good food figured out,
but they fall short when it comes to desserts.
Does anyone like flan?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years: #20

Life Lesson #20:

To have a happy and healthy relationship with anyone takes time and effort,
but there is nothing else worth putting in time and effort more
than having happy and healthy relationships.

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years: #21

Life Lesson #21:

What you say is what you get.

We must take great care to never speak negativity into our lives or the lives of others close to us, especially our children.

Speak only Absolute Truth and predict only Blessings, so that your joy may be full.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Cozumel Quick Sketches

I hate that I used a Sharpie to journal on the back of some of my sketches. It bled through pretty badly. UGGHHH!!

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years: #22

Life Lesson #22:

Most of us in the U.S. have absolutely NOTHING to ever complain about.

Monday, March 14, 2011

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years: #23

Life Lesson #23

The second most important decision a person makes in her life is whom to marry.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years: #24

Life Lesson #24:

You are not responsible for anyone's feelings or problems.

Cozumel Day 7 - Last Day

One last coconut before we leave for the airport.

the girls played with their new Mexican dolls in the long airport line.

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years: #25

Life Lesson #25:

You can not predict how a person will react.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Cozumel Day 6

40 Lessons I've Learned in My 40 Years: #26

Life Lesson #26:

I used to think that the person a child becomes is mostly based on how she is nurtured with a little bit of nature tossed in for flavoring. Nowadays, I have come to believe that children come out of the womb who they are, and we as parents nurture them the best we can and hope it makes a little bit of difference.

Learning this lesson could seem scary, as in "you get what you get," but I like to think of it as letting off the hook, which lessens my anxiety considerably.