Good morning everyone!! I was up at 6:30am to exercise. Now that I’m back, I’m having breakfast and, well, blogging.
When I went on my walk and had my little carrier in case I spotted any live cuban snails where I saw the dead one yesterday, but no luck.
On the urban wildlife front, here is a neighborhood kitty –skittish but friendly. He meowed a greeting but stayed away.
To my delight, the burrowing owls were out again! This time I counted four (not all pictured):
Watching me carefully…
This guy was a ways off the nest –clearly eager to return to it but didn’t want to do it with me watching.
He even yelled at my a little!
I also spotted a few squirrels but nothing else unusual.
🦖 Jurassic World Alive 🦕
Well, unless you count dinosaurs. 😁 I gathered enough DNA for a few more, including this triceratops:
As always, had a bit too much fun with this.
Playing with a tire!
I love how these photos came out:
I also created this flamboyant guy!
He’s a little charmer, look at that grin!
Anyway, it’s gonna be a busy day but a good one, I hope. We’re going out to lunch soon, and I still have a lot of work to do around the house, as well as the daily warm-up and another commission, and more exercise. I’m sure I’ll post again today. Hope you’re all enjoying your labor day weekend!
Hello, everyone! I haven’t been terrible active on the blog (art aside) because I’ve just been working tons. I’m going to try to catch up on a few things so this post will be all over the place.
This is unrelated to everything else I’ll discuss on this post, so here is a Little outfit I wore the other day:
I have a few new skirtalls coming, so I’m pretty excited to create new outfits with these:
I finally paid off my PayPal Credit account and closed it (I may already have mentioned that) and a few days ago my last Amazon Card payment cleared so that account is zeroed again –well, until next Christmas. It was a big one, over $400, so I am very pleased.
I also set a little money aside and redecorated the kitchen with it:
This may not look like much, but in seven years I never really did put work into the kitchen, so it was important to me. The most significant things are the new trash can (which is motion activated) and the Instant Pot.
In addition to that, I’ve made good strides on my next goal of paying an old debt. It’s the last thing I have to pay before I can begin the fund to move my mom in with us. I wanted something to encourage me, so I put this neat lightbox on the studio wall:
It’s still a big number (but less as of writing this post, actually $3,950) but I paid a big chunk in just over a few days, so my expectation is that as long as I make this my primary goal, I might be done by June. And then I can begin saving the $10,000 I need to move my mom with us (not counting the money I’ll have to save to renovate the room for her, but I expect that to be under $1,000.)
So, about all that. Recently, I’ve been contemplating the entirety of last year, how much closer I’ve grown to my mom during our long Zoom calls, which regularly lead us into conversations deeper than we’d have when we were living together. How I’ve changed, and how she’s come to accept those changes in me. And other things… like how tired she looks —more and more every day. How even on her days off, she gets constant stressful calls even during the couple of hours we set aside to talk. It’s been so long since my mom had free time for any fun. I don’t even remember when it last happened, Christmas aside.
Then there’s the pandemic, the utter helplessness I’ve felt as she continues to manage a gas station in this situation at her age… her landlord continually bringing people to see the apartment which he has been trying to sell for years (so we never know when he’s kicking her out once each contract ends. Every yearly contract could be the last he gives her, and every time he raises her rent.)
But I think it was having her for Christmas, just her and I, that really cemented it for me. It was the first such Christmas in many years, and I realized just how much my assumed role has changed. How I want to cook for her and care for her, keep her safe, comfortable and happy. I enjoy my life so much, literally every day of my life is a dream, and were it not for all she sacrificed so we could be here, Christopher and I never would have met.
There’s something that has been eating at me more and more. I think Grandpa’s recent passing reinforced it too. When my mom and I left Argentina, we always hoped that if only we were patient, and worked hard, someday we would see my Grandma again. Actually, the goal was for her to move with us. But time passed without any possibility of this happening, let alone seeing her at all. Same with my dad. Patience, patience. The day would surely come.
But it didn’t. My Grandma died of leukemia in her 70s. My dad died of emphysema in his early 80s. I was 18 years old when I last got to see them.
And now my mom is in her late 60s. In four years, she will be 70 years old. How much time do I have with her? Hopefully, a good number of years still –but how much time I am okay losing until I can enjoy days with her while she still has her health?
I want to have breakfast in the morning with her, and to have dinner the three of us in the evening, and maybe play games the three of us together once her brain remembers how to do something other than work and stress 24/7. I want to go on walks together and have mate in the afternoons.
But most of all, more than anything in the world, I want her to wake up and not dread the day. I want her to think “I have nothing to do today. Nothing to clean. Nothing to cook. No stressful, dangerous job to go to.” I don’t think my mom has ever felt that since she was little. I want her to enjoy her life. And I want to learn to drive so I can take her places. I want to take her to dinner once in a while, something that used to be a once-a-year luxury for us… I want to binge watch tv shows with her, or go to a movie and not have her fall asleep halfway because her body and mind are so utterly and constantly exhausted.
I want her to be able to pick the colors for her room, to furnish it with new furniture that she actually likes and isn’t used or the cheapest thing she could afford.
And I know I may not always manage it with my art, and taking some “real” work may be necessary, but all that I can manage to do with the money my artwork brings is an extra source of pride. Of course I couldn’t do that without Christopher. He takes care of me after all. But if I can, in turn, use my art to take care of her and of my business expenses, I’ll feel like I am succeeding.
I don’t know why, but all of a sudden I have a great desire to be reliable, even if it takes me time and effort to become someone that can be described as such. Because of this, cooking is becoming more important to me, as well, and I’m trying really hard to learn. Paying my debts feels important. Looking after our house and after my husband, properly, feels even more important than before. Asking for help less and less becomes more important too.
I want them both to feel proud of me, to feel lucky to have me as a wife and daughter, rather than a “well, it could be worse.” But above all I want to believe that they are —lucky, that is— as I am to have them. So, I’m trying as hard as I can.
I know, deep inside, that part of what planted the seed for this was seeing my own reprehensible behavior and lack of responsibility to others reflected in someone else. In being disgusted by seeing that reflection, I also became angry with myself. It’s all well and good to look down on someone for being irresponsible and self-centered, but incredibly hypocritical when you are better than that only by some small measure. I knew I didn’t want to be that way, not anymore and not ever again.
So, now, my debt is my priority. And I want the people who love me and look after me to be my priority, rather than always my own self-centered ass. I want to be a source of comfort, not worry.
Anyway, are you all getting ready for Valentine’s Day? I’m working on a small surprise for Christopher but it’s terribly hard and I truly do not know if it will be ruined before I am done. For all the effort put into it, it looks more than a little clumsy (so far.) I’m hoping it will come together once it’s done. I’m working a little bit on it every day, because it’s really tiring.
That aside, believe it or not I’ve been writing (I’d say the next chapter of Meganeea is 80% done, illustrations included, and the chapter after that has the same level of progress in both aspects.) And somehow, in between hours and hours of illustration work, I’ve managed to sneak in a little gaming and reading. But I’ll save that for future posts. It may take a while… this blog is hugely important to me and that will not change. I’m just trying to be as responsible as possible and get my work done.
I guess I’ll end this here, go do the laundry, and then draw some more before it’s time to make dinner. I hope things are going great with everyone!
Hello everyone! 👋 It’s been a really nice few productive days! ☺️ First of all the other day I heard back from an old friend after reaching out. It was just so wonderful to know that he was okay, and that he’s happy and doing well overall (aside from the occasional poor mental health that the current state of the country plus the pandemic has caused to so many of us.)
I ended up joining his server and it’s quite fun to be in a place that is adjacent to my interests while also not being my usual group. It feels kinda fresh. 😊
That day I also wore one of the newest ODU releases of my designs. 🌈 I’m quite fond of it:
I’ve gotten a ton of artwork done during the week. 🙌 Got some cooking done. Grocery shopping done. Several baby snails have been born and overall my little clan is doing fine right now. 🐌
Kotoko continually kept me company during the workweek. She napped near my feet and got petted a lot:
Today (well, technically yesterday —Saturday) I couldn’t take the stir-craziness anymore and went to Hobby Lobby. A couple of things caught my eye. There was a kit for LINE Friends bag charms. I LOVE Brown and Cony so much, but these are fairly obscure characters in the sense that you rarely see them in mainstream places outside of the internet. The kit itself was crappy but I was excited to have come across it.
I also saw a Spirit stepping stone. I took a photo for Nate to see whenever he looks at this post. ^_^
For dinner I wasn’t very healthy but it was worth it. I made a big batch of homemade fries and had it with a little coke:
After dinner I finished shading all the shinies sketches so I might just finish all four tomorrow. 🤔
I’m too sleepy to be able to write any more… guess I’ll proofread this tomorrow. Goodnight everyone. 😴
It’s been a while! I’ve had a few drafts sitting for some time… Last week I really just worked too much, and then had to pack for our Sebastian visit. A lot of stuff accumulated, so my updates will be a little disjointed and spread out among a bunch of posts of varying substance (this one doesn’t have much.) 😅
Here’s a colorful little snack I had the other day (I’m also officially out of extra coffee, so I’m sleeping properly again, haha):
As I mentioned offhandedly in a previous post, Tomoyo has asthma. We’ve purchased the device to give her the medicine (via inhalers, which have also been ordered and are in the way). In the meantime, I am trying my hardest to get her used to it by giving her treats with it, so she gets used to having it near her face:
Kotoko has been slowing down lately… we think she is feeling her age. She seems to grow more affectionate with every passing year,
This photo is from before I went shopping for groceries and for a present for Grandma’s birthday last week. It was my first time wearing that onesie by ODU. I like it a lot, it’s one of my new faves!
That’s it for this post, I’m moving on to my other drafts… hopefully fully catching up today!
…and then some! I’m sorry for the lack of activity… I’ve got many posts and news to catch up on.
Where to begin. This past weekend I went grocery shopping and finally took down all the Christmas decorations –a heck of a job, took a whole day. I also set a bunch of things aside for donation, and scheduled the VVA pick-up. I’ve been drawing SO MUCH. To date, I’ve inked 19 commissions in less than ten days, as well as worked on personal art. Some of the commissions are highly detailed, stuff I pushed myself extra hard on. This is very unusual; normally, this much work would take me 2-3 months to do, and I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT IS HAPPENING.
I’m absolutely NOT complaining though. My work has been an utter joy to me these past couple of weeks, and I do hope it sets a trend for the rest of this year.
I also took care of the snails over the weekend, and moved all of my adult snails that aren’t super tiny (such as Bulimulus guadalupensis) to one large tank. I still keep two small containers, one with random eggs and one with baby Roman snails. Anyway, that took a lot of work too.
Today we had to take Tomoyo to the vet. The short story is she has asthma. I’ll leave further details for another post.
Tonight I made salmon croquettes for dinner. It was my first time making croquettes of any sort. Christopher helped me get them to the right temp at the end but I didn’t have help beyond that. They turned out really good:
In other news, I was able to get the stain off my new Animal Crossing Switch game card case!
Due to this and some other small issues, the seller refunded me, so I ended up using the refund to get a Spirit: Stallion Of The Cimarron all-over patterned shirt that had been on my Etsy favorites for AGES.
I have one more thing to share. This is kind of… a blast from the past for me, the LONG AGO past, the “when I was 7-8” past. So, you see, troll dolls were one of my earliest special interests… maybe the second or third I ever had. I liked troll dolls to such an intense degree, that they were the seed that began my Meganeea stories, though eventually all the little troll characters I had became simply elves (and then, animal-elf hybrids.)
I had some Russ trolls, and many Applause trolls, and for a while I had a single, giant, unwieldly Thomas Dam troll that I ended up giving away. But I always wanted a smaller, happier looking Dam troll of my own. And now I have one. Meet Celeste:
Celeste, by the way, was Soraya’s original name. And she was originally a troll (yes, really!) with blue hair. Her blue hair was lighter back then (Celeste means “light blue” in Spanish) but this particular troll doll has Soraya’s exact, current shade of blue hair, which is my favorite.
If you look at other characters of mine, such as Zádatann and Gideon, you can see that their facial structure is very troll-like still. ^_^ So that’s an odd bit of trivia for ya.
I have to go now and get ready for bed, though I still feel like I have a lot to write. But at least I wanted to make a post, because it’s been a few days. Hope everyone is doing well, the current state of the country considered.
Good afternoon, everyone! This morning I found Buddy and Sarah on the tree:
I didn’t sleep so great… I’m very tired and a bit down, a bit stressed. Things are absolutely better than other times this weekend, I think it’s just my brain that has been getting on a certain wavelength in certain situations for a while so I’m training it out of that. I just feel a little exhausted.
We went out to lunch and then to Five Below. I was really happy I got to go. I picked up some stuff my mom needed, and a couple of shirts for myself:
I also got two set of posters, one to send Nate and one for myself. The Mandalorian one is for me. I’m going to pin them on my cork board.
They had these little Good Luck trolls. I got one of those too and stuck him on top of my left monitor:
Pretty soon I’m going to be baking empanadas for our early Christmas dinner. Then we will exchange gifts. But I’m not opening my gifts from Mwako until Christmas (or from my mom who is bringing hers on Christmas Eve.) So I get to have Christmas twice. 😊
Hope everyone is having a wonderful Saturday afternoon!