Posted in Blog Tuesdays

Updates and Video Tuesdays


In a few weeks I start Graduate School online for Education Transformation (doesn’t that sound cool?) I am scrambling around to get done what I need to before that, and I still am learning 2d animation and Aftereffects. I had this idea, what if I hosted on my site a Video Tuesday? That way I can still dedicate learning animation and bringing the mall’s stories to life without losing it when I start school. Be sure to stop by on Tuesdays on this page to see and participate in the weekly videos. And did you sign the guestbook?


Posted in art experiments, Blog Tuesdays, Creativity and imagination

A Dose of the Magical


Wow. What a crazy year. Seems like every morning I check the news feed and I learn about a natural disaster happening, a crazy person driving into a street of people, or some fundamental right taken away from me. It’s easy to be down and discouraged. The one thing that helps me feel hopeful and back on my feet is to remember about the Magical: the awe, the serendipity, the divine and imaginative. Here’s a big dose for you this holiday season of the Magic that is out there folks all over that are designing up the Magical.

Screen Shot 2017-12-17 at 10.16.23 AM

The Holiday Windows in New York City bring to life magical desinations. Check them out here.


Genie Lamps $30 aisle 4, the Invention Room, Idea Emporium

Screen Shot 2017-12-21 at 8.31.03 AM

Screen Shot 2017-12-21 at 8.33.37 AM

Oh my goodness! There’s an Ice Cream Museum! Are you kidding me? Toppings are toys? I’m so on board. Here’s the link to locations in California. Road trip!


Formula to grow taller, I could use this. $200 in the Invention Room

There is this thing called Ring Ring Wonder Christmas. Have you heard of it? There’s a series of videos on YouTube and it’s magical times three!


Rose Fishes need good homes. See Zozo for information.

Screen Shot 2017-12-21 at 8.53.11 AM

Then there’s the land of Pip and Pop. I’ll smoke what they are smoking! Their worlds feel like stepping into bubblegum and dime store toys. Cool blog post here.

anothercupcake copy

Cupcakes with cloud frosting in the Bakery $3 each

I wish the mall was a real mall I would be making lots of money! Ha ha ha, sigh. But in the meantime until that becomes a magical reality, for 2018 my goal will be to put the Idea Emporium Activity Book into form, now that it’s complete thanks to all of you who have cheered me on and interacted with the posts and prompts, etc. May your holidays be bright, love-filled, and of course, Magical. 

Preorder my first Idea Emporium Zine 101 exploring and wrapping up 2017 with the theme AUTHENTIC filled with Reg Tips, creative prompts, drawings, sketchbook pages…

  • What if it’s simple?
  • Resource for Sensory Overload
  • Go Where You Are Valued story
  • I lost myself story…
  • Cecile’s class
  •  Music for the Invention Room
  • Multiple Intelligences quiz
  • Your place of Power
  • When you share in the wrong place
  • What I learned from Project Runway
  • Movie suggestions
  • etc. etc.

Buy here at Preorder Price $9.00 (Available in January)


Until next time,


Posted in art experiments, Blog Tuesdays, children's book illustration, Whimsical animation, whimsy and quirky art

They are my favorites, dang it! The message of being true


There is a program on Instagram that will pick out your best posts of 2017. I fiddled around with it and it worked once. The second time it looped over and over saying my images were very large and to wait a moment. After waiting too many moments, I took the hint and walked away from it, thinking, there must be a message for me here. The application picks out your most liked posts, which brought me to the creative’s age old question. Do I create what others want or what comes through me and makes me happy?

I have picked out MY Best Nine of Instagram and a thoughtful analysis of why I picked these out.

  1. The Googly with an egg.

I really enjoyed making these creatures inspired by a visit to the Phoenix Museum and Alexander Calder’s bird exhibit. I’ve been learning animation the past year and I wanted to experiment. My friend Britt suggested the Googly rock the egg to sleep. I took that and ran with it and fumbled with the animation. It needs a few tweeks, but I like it.

2. Balloon Animals Visiting the Bakery

After watching the Thanksgiving Parade and meeting a woman who made Balloon Animals at Ihop that same week, I was enamored with Balloon Animals. I wrote an entire list of Balloon-related themes for a lesson/curriculum, which I LOVE doing, by the way. What if Balloon Animals visited the Bakery? What would they eat? Well, ice cream sodas, of course.

3. The Googlys in the Invention Room

My first foray into digital illustration meets hand-drawn illustration. I had this image in my mind of the Googlys surrounding the Invention Room waiting for their eggs to hatch. The Invention Room is this place of inventive chaos. There’s so much activity and creatures bouncing about among the vials of experiments and it seems like the creature who runs the place is always out to lunch and doesn’t notice a thing or prefers the chaos.

4. Underwater Lollipop

I love all the inventions made in the Idea Emporium’s Bakery, but this one is my favorite.

5. Flight

I had fun experimenting with drawing butterflies to animate across the page. I tried one such experiment and it didn’t impress me. Time to play more with it. But I did dig the gray/halftones next to the yellow.

6. The Panda Train

My nod to my stepson whose pandas all have fun names, including Medium Panda. I believe the stories of the mall are already out there. We just need to discover them. And his pandas must have come from the mall. They needed a train to deliver the mail, of course.

7. Imagination Quote

I love Julia Cameron’s book The Artist Way. It was life-changing for me, forcing myself to look at my creative life and make it a priority. We need the imagination to come up with solutions to every day problems, to give us hope and delight.

8. The Escaping Monster

I have no idea how the monsters under the bed became a part of the Invention Room, but I loved the story and I loved my very first animation attempts. Now that little purple monster can be found floating around most of the mall. He just won’t be contained, the little adventurer. (Check out the web pages here, he’s everywhere).

9. Fairy Real Estate

Being a designing fairy, I had to have fairy influence in this world. Playing around with fairy houses I fell in love with the crooked ones. What if the fairies who lived in them were just a little cockeyed or lopsided? Wouldn’t they need something a little different to live in? The Nursery department has an specific order to it, opposite of the Invention Room, or the occasional chaos of the Bakery.

My conclusion or realization (big lightbulb over my head) for my Favorite Best Nine are when my posts were purposeful and focused on the story of the Mall emerging I was happy, and hopefully, the viewers were too. I brought forth energy*spark*magic forward to share. I lost my way when I thought, this is what the readers want, this is what they like, these have the numbers, but then I am not true to my mall that is emerging and taking life. And I’m abandoning the tiny blue monsters, the Googlies, and the bouncing cakes, who want to be discovered.

It’s a fine line to balance between running a business, catering to your audience, and being true to what is being born. It can easily swing in the wrong direction. Something to think about this Tuesday.

Oh, and big big realization. Through my sharing on Instagram in the past year, I created the activity book! A big thank you for those who visit over there. Of course, there will be tweeking and fixing and editing, but the illos and pieces are done. The story book has just started.

Until next time. And Happy Hannukah to my Hannukah friends! Be sure to visit the Mall’s departments. And if you are on Facebook, be sure to join the Group.


Posted in being a sensitive artist, Being Creative, Blog Tuesdays

How to Avoid the Holiday Overload When You are a Sensitive Creative

Creative people are sensitive people. We can enjoy the subtle differences among Yellows, a beautiful piece of music brings tears to our eyes, and a mall this time of year is the equivalent experience of throwing on all the lights at 3 a.m. when you were sound asleep. Overload to our sensitive systems can happen easily during most of the year when there is way too much stimulation and Christmas/Holiday time is all about mass stimulation, and yes, that sounded naughty.

My husband and I were brave enough to shop two stores during Black Friday. There were tremendous sales, people rubbing elbows in crowded aisles, overheated rooms and STIMULATION. After about an hour of grabbing what felt like anything shiny and half price, or even triple below the price, I felt like a kid opening up the twentieth present at Christmas. You are excited, happy, and a little fried and twitchy. I imagine this is what gamblers feel like after a big win. You want more adrenaline, more wins, more more! But being a sensitive person I felt the effect on my body as if I had a large glass of caffeine. I was wired and I had no idea how I was ever going to calm down. After several hours after shopping I started to come down and stare at what we bought. I don’t even know what we picked up. I wasn’t sure of my name. I forgot what month it was. And why was my left eyelid twitching so much?

Holidays are tough. I probably sound like a Grinch but I am just focused on the overwhelm heading my way. Unlike the kids, I have a different experience of Christmas. I remember last year spending DAYS wrapping until I never wanted to see Scotch Tape again. We spent money we didn’t have. The house was wall to wall decorations in weird places. And I am learning that for a parent there is a whole lot of the have-tos which make the experience not so much festive for an adult. 

You have to:

  • Buy presents for the mailman
  • Fill out a Christmas Letter filled with exciting details of the year and I am notoriously private
  • Send out holiday cards after you have no money for postage after you spent all the money on holiday gifts and brave the POST OFFICE LINE
  • Decorate the front yard while trying to keep the new puppy in the backyard but she sees you in the front yard and is flipping out and trying to find a way out
  • Send a gift to a relative who told you to disappear and have a good life
  • Make cookies? I am notoriously awful at cooking so this really causes major stress
  • And now the kids informed me they want to celebrate something called Advent. What is Advent? Does it involve buying more gifts or baking? Please say no.
  • There’s decorating the church with Greens and driving around the neighborhood watching flashing lights so I can have a migraine.
  • There’s holiday parties…I really hate small talk. It’s just cruel.
  • There’s also lots of talk of Jesus, of course, which is a bit awkward when you are Jewish. Conflict of interest.

That’s a lot of Have To’s.

Is there a sure sign of overwhelm? You feel way bitchy. And I mean way. I bet my list even sounded a tiny bit bitchy. Your crankiness can spill all over and those nasty thoughts can even escape if you are not careful and you can scream the F word in front of the kids when you didn’t mean it, or tell one to please stop talking because your ears are going to explode. It doesn’t mean you are the Incredible Hulk having a moment, but it does mean you took way too much on and your circuits are frying. All this stimulation and constant excitement is not meant for a sensitive system. A small tree with a few lights in the middle of the Forest to visit? Yes, that sounds more like it.

Is there a solution??? This year I am having limits. A whole new concept I am learning. It’s an interesting thing that explains and sets what I can and can’t do, and what I am willing to do. You want cookies for your class? Well, then Dad will have to go buy some. Family wants to go to a holiday party filled with noise and kids running around? I am willing to do this one other thing like buy all the presents, but I will stay home and watch Rudolph with the Dogs while you visit. It doesn’t mean I don’t care or want to participate, or not part of the family, it just means that I need to take care of myself or Christmas will be renamed The Migraine Holiday, and January will bring in a bad case of the Flu. Thank you for understanding.

Happy limit making, my friends.

Dedicated to supporting my fellow creatives survive the Holidays,

Posted in Blog Tuesdays, Creativity and imagination, Inspiring Art Destinations

Field Trip for the Imagination: Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Rooms


It’s Blog Tuesday! Woot! And I’m tired of my Facebook Feed of Gloom and Anxiety. I like to think when you step into the Idea Emporium you are transported into a magical mall. We visited the Phoenix Art Museum not too long ago and the whole family loved the Infinity Rooms! They are pure magic and you are immersed into a magical world. This interesting artist creates with mirrors and sculptures whole new mind destinations. Ready to hug your imagination?


Visit a Field of Pumpkins

A giant pumpkin is at the beginning of your museum tour created by the 88-year-old Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama. You can peer into the holes for a “whole” new different perspective. We saw this one in person.


She also has a work that is a field of pumpkins. Trippy, eh? It’s sculpture and mirrors. Now that’s a Pumpkin Patch! Don’t see Snoopy anywhere. This exhibit is over at the Dallas Museum of Art.

Screen Shot 2017-10-24 at 9.56.47 AM

What is interesting about this artist who loves creating art installations she calls Infinity Rooms, is that 1/ her parents and family discouraged her path into art which caused her much anguish and solidified her path, and 2/ she suffers from mental illness and channels her anxiety and obsessions through her artwork. You can read more about her here.

Screen Shot 2017-10-24 at 9.57.06 AM

I found this pumpkin sculpture she did on the Internet and now all I want to do is make life-size pumpkins out of clay.


The part we visited in the museum was the Firefly Room. A little scary at first when you walk in for those who don’t like the dark or small spaces, but then enchanting and deeply magical once you are inside.

Screen Shot 2017-10-24 at 10.14.17 AM

Yayoi Kusama’s You Who Are Getting Obliterated in the Dancing Swarm of Fireflies (2005)

She brings a fairytale to life about fireflies. You walk among a dark room and tall trees are simulated in the middle as if you are deep in the forest. Fireflies (small LED lights) light up the entire room as you walk the edges of it. It’s a tranquil yet magical experience.


Screen Shot 2017-10-24 at 11.01.21 AM

For Further Exploration I Found These Links of her Other Infinity Rooms:

An article on her mirror rooms in the Los Angeles Times

Trippy! Love Forever room

Check out these candy-colored dots!

A few of the rooms on Mimi’s Cute Lips Blog

“I wanted to show the cosmic image beyond where we live” video

Until next Blog Tuesday,


Have you joined our Facebook group? 



Posted in being a sensitive artist, Blog Tuesdays

The Gift and Curse of SOUND


I’m telepathic. It’s a weird skill and one I didn’t know I had until my first animal communication class back in 1998. I later became an animal communicator because I could hear the thoughts of the animals pretty clearly and I love animals and wanted to help them. For over fourteen years I was a practicing animal communicator. When I stopped in 2014, I thought my head would grow quiet and I’d have a rest. Instead, I find I pick up on thoughts and sounds even more and I need to be careful what affects me without me realizing it. I become overly exhausted from too much sound, whether a noisy mall, too loud neighbors, or the kids making noise in the middle of the room with repeat nonsense sounds.

There’s so much noise right now on the Internet and the feeds and you can inadvertantly pick up the Noise in your head and walk away with it, much like a tune that bounces around in your head you can’t get rid of.

When there was so much of the political unrest after the election and right before there was a collective Sound of Helplessness and Anger. Anywhere you felt that in your life it flared up to deal with.

When there were horrible floods and hurricanes, the Sound was feeling overwhelmed or flooded in your life.

With the current Weinstein story and sexual abuse stories, women everywhere hear the Sound of when they were abused. It’s like a note on a keyboard that is pressed and immediately, you are back there, experiencing that disrespect, that violation, that betrayal. That sound brings back the energy and pulls you in.


Don’t get lost in it

Sounds are good if they bring up experiences to heal. That’s the gift of Sound. Face it, deal with it, let it all out. But if Sound brings something up you shouldn’t get lost in it. It’s not now, it’s then. Honor it, learn from it, watch it from afar, and then bring in a new sound. But recognize it. You are reacting to a certain time, a certain note being played. You are safe.

Hearing too many stories may be overwhelming you. Your empathy is on overload. You don’t need to hear more Weinstein experiences from actresses. You already get his number. You need to fight Sound with Sound. Hear your own thoughts, and music is the antidote to take you there.



And need to get away from the world? Join our Facebook Group! It’s over here. We talk new thinking and feeding the imagination, while avoiding the Feeds.


Posted in being a sensitive artist, Being Creative, Blog Tuesdays, Creativity and imagination

The Shadow in us we need to greet and Shadow Theater

I anxiously awaited the sun being blotted out while hiding out in the house away from windows with my Giant Ooh Yellow Dog, hoping the eclipse would pass quickly. Crouching down on the couch and pretending nothing was happening, while facing my fears of going blind, I thought about the Shadow. Not the old-time radio drama my mom used to play for me on cassettes, but the emotional shadow. Perhaps how we faced this eclipse is how we face that shadow. Some folks were out there with special glasses, with a ton of faith, staring directly at the sun. Since I was not one of them, I must have a hard time facing mine.

The last few weekends at church we covered the seven deadly sins. Now let me explain this. We belong to a really cool church that was test-drove after many different churches that would fit our bi-religion family. Pastor Jessica is super sweet, forward-thinking, deep and a fellow introvert who does enjoy being at the podium for two hours a week. She approached the deadly sins like we should approach our shadow. There was no judgement or shaming, just awareness. We looked at Gluttony and were honest with ourselves where we were holding back and not trusting. We looked at things like Sloth and where we needed to show up. I digged this view of the shadow. Reveal it with a little light, let it out on paper, and then reframe it.

The other day I felt some serious shadow emotions. I was very upset and angry when my stepkids got into an accident. I felt ugly things that probably didn’t make sense or were “wrong” but what I learned was I needed to express those feelings because they needed to come out, otherwise I was guaranteed a whopping headache later. I had to expose them to the light to get to the other side of it regardless how they looked. If I jumped immediately into “being positive,” it was going to go somewhere in my body or hang on for awhile. And you know what? I expressed them. I felt them. I wrote them down. I drew them. I allowed myself to think evil, mean thoughts, and nothing happened. Thoughts did not become things. I didn’t destroy a village. Nothing was burned on the front lawn. And once I did, I got to the other side of it, and thought clearly and calmly, and had more empathy for everyone involved. I judged my shadow, and it was trying to help me.

So this week through my art and through design I want to play with shadows. Light and dark. And shadow puppets.

I’ve been putting together my introduction video for my Playhouse. Want a peek at my sketchbook?


Oooh. Pretties. Just begun. Still more to come.


Will you join me? How can you express through being creative and greet and meet your Shadow? How is it trying to help you? Some things to play with, experiment with. Planting a seed.

Until next Blog Tuesday, embrace the Sun and the Moon.