CLAUDINE HELLMUTH
CLAUDINE HELLMUTH blog   

Sunday, April 30, 2006
sailed through the weekend
I spent this weekend running errands, buying supplies etc. that I'll need for my workshops in Dallas.

Friday night Paul and I watched The Incredibles . What a cute movie! Last night I rented Flightplan (Paul didn't want to watch with me). I wanted something light and not too deep. That's pretty much what I got. It was an OK movie, entertaining at least.

Now I'm feeling like I'm getting sick! oh no! At least there's time to get better before
I teach in Dallas. I am taking Airborne every 3 hours and hoping my sore throat goes away. Yipes! There is nothing worse than teaching while sick so I am determined to get better.

I can't believe how fast the weekend went. Seems now that Paul has Saturdays and Sundays off the weekends go so much faster than when he had weekdays off. I wonder why that is?
Friday, April 28, 2006
tag - i'm it!
I've been tagged by Rachel. My first time! So here goes:

In my fridge:
diet coke
dried apricots
crystal lite (lemon aide flavor)
milk
Vietnamese take out


In my closet:
jeans and more jeans
t-shirts
tank tops
unread books
suitcase


In my purse:
lip gloss
head on (headache remedy)
pens
gum
old receipts


In my car ( yellow VW new Beetle):
assorted cassette tapes (I don't have a car CD player)
diet coke can
hula girl on dashboard
yellow daisy in flower holder
toby's car seat


I will tag 5 people:
nina
lesley
karen
carmi
misty

thanks! that was fun!
Thursday, April 27, 2006
way too much thinking
Last night I had such a hard time getting to sleep, my mind was racing with pressing issues like: remember to buy light bulbs, did I fill that prescription?, is the front door locked? don't forget to buy more cat litter...... etc etc.

I was up until 2am thinking of all sorts of silly things that didn't really need dealing with just then. I tried reading, drinking warm milk, even Tylenol PM, but nothing was making me sleepy. arrrugh! I hate it when that happens!

So needless to say, today was a little slow. I did manage to get a little work done and I'm going to try and get an early night so maybe tomorrow I'll be friskier. I hope so!

Here's a PoppetTM Sketch commission that I finished up and sent off! What a sweet family! I love all the critters! The one little kitty got cut off in my scanner, but he's all there in real life.
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
rumor mill
We found out that our neighbors have been talking about us. The couple who live behind us thought we had adopted a child! We ran into our neighbor while walking Toby in his stroller and he looked inside and smiled real big and said "so you didn't adopt!"

He told us that they kept seeing us walking with a stroller and then last week (when we had our niece over) they heard child voices and they put two and two together and decided that we must have adopted! This totally cracked me up! I wonder how many other neighbors think we suddenly had a baby.

I had a little giggle when I imagined his surprise when he realized that we have our dog in the stroller! I would have loved to have been there when he went home and told his wife "hey they didn't adopt a child, they are walking their dog in the stroller" hee hee!

Good TV on tonight!
Amazing Race (mo-jo and the frat boys have got to go. I heart the hippies!) and Top Chef (Stephen needs to go too!)

night night!
i can't resist
For all you Blow Out fans... here's the video of Jonathan on the Ali G Show. If you haven't seen this, it's hilarious! Please note naughty language is used so you are forewarned!
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
it's tuesday!
I had a busy day in the studio working on commissions. I had one of those days where I worked and worked AND worked and then at the end of the day I surveyed what I had done and I couldn't see much progress. I hate it when that happens. But usually after a day like that, the next day is full of fast-forward movement, so I'll hope that's the case tomorrow!

I looked at the calendar and I realized that I am leaving soon to
teach in Dallas (still room in my classes!) so I have to get a move on with getting work done before I leave and preparing for the trip! It seemed like just yesterday when I got home from ArtFest and thought I had so much time. yipes!

Here's a PoppetTM commission I did for fellow artist and blogger,
Rachel. Isn't she a cutie!?

oh! Jelaine F. -- if you are out there... I still don't see your podcast submission in my email. I don't have your email address to contact you so if you are out there, please
email me! thanks!!

OK I have to go, I am now officially addicted to
Blow Out. That guy is a piece of work!
Win a PoppetTM Sketch commission!
My friend Sara's husband Dante recently underwent brain surgery to remove a tumor. They have health insurance but as we all know that only goes so far... so she and her husband are having a raffle to raise money to pay for his medical bills. I have donated a custom PoppetTM Sketch commission for one lucky winner! Click here to find out more!
Monday, April 24, 2006
this makes my day!
Wow! I got a glowing review of my PoppetTM Scrapbooking line in Scrapbook & Cards Today magazine! Click here to read the article in PDF format.

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Sunday, April 23, 2006
quick collage podcast #4
The fourth "quick collage podcast" is here!The "quick collage podcast" is art challenge in which I make a collage in 20 minutes around a theme that Paul reveals to me moments before we start the clock.

The theme for this episode is "friend."

Ready to listen? Click here now!
Or use the player below:

powered by ODEO

After you've listened to the podcast, click here to see the finished artwork.

We thought it would fun to invite other artists to join in to see how many variations on the same theme could be created. Click here to see a Flickr photo set of their submissions.

Thank you to all who participated this time, it was so much fun to see what you made! If you'd like to play along in the next podcast, stay tuned to my blog, we'll post directions here.

Click here to learn how subscribe and you'll get updates when new podcasts come along.
Enjoy!

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Friday, April 21, 2006
hello there birdy!
It was supposed to be a restful day... which it was for the most part. But then this evening a teeny tiny bird changed all our Friday night moving watching plans. While I was walking Toby a little baby Mocking bird dropped right out of his nest and fell practically at my feet. oh gosh! And a thunderstorm was coming! Yipes!

As soon as I saw it I rushed Toby back in the house and grabbed a ladder and gloves and a box. I tried putting the little guy back in the nest but he would have none of it and climbed back out again, so I put him in the box and ran back to the house.

I remembered that my friend
Martha knew of a lady that took in injured and orphaned birds so I called her and luckily she was home and had the number handy. When I first called Ann Young, aka "the bird lady" she asked me a list of questions to determine the age of the bird and then said to try to let the little guy hop around and see if his mommy and daddy came back, then if that didn't work after 30 minutes to bring him in. So after an agonizing 30 minutes watching this little birdy we put him back in his cozy box and drove the 45 minutes to the bird lady's house.

As soon as we got there, Ann took him into her arms and gave him medicine and food while she and checked him all over for injury. Once he was deemed well enough to be with the other baby birds she found a cage with baby mockingbirds, plopped him in and he snuggled up right away with the other babies. It was so heartwarming!

Ann Young (no web site) is an amazing woman who dedicates every spare minute to taking care of birds so that they can be rehabilitated and released -- an incredible person who looks after god's creatures like my friend
Bernie. We need more people like this in the world.
Thursday, April 20, 2006
where's my mo-jo?
I'm trying to get my groove back after this crazy week. Last week I was jamming in the studio and now I have hit a wall of exhaustion. Yesterday and today I have been totally wiped out and then to add insult to injury I had a migraine last night and then another one this afternoon. Yuk!

I tried to get a little work done today and managed a couple hours, but my eyes were so heavy I finally had to just lay down. I haven't felt this tired since I was 20 and had a bad couple of years with
chronic fatigue. Maybe after the weekend I'll be feeling better. I hope! I have so much work to do. I slept 10 hours last night you'd think that would be enough. I always get so worried when I start to get this sleepy thinking that I'll never feel awake again. Very annoying. But it has been a crazy week so I guess I'll try to cut myself some slack.

Here's a PoppetTM sketch
commission that I finished and sent off. Aren't they sweet!?

Oh and don't forget to play along in the new podcast! Submissions are due Saturday night.
Here's how to play. We hope you'll give it a shot, right now we only have one player and we need more than that!
Wednesday, April 19, 2006
new baby is here!
Yesterday, I arrived at Pat and Maria's house at 6am as they were leaving to go to the hospital. Maiya and I played by ourselves until Paul got there at 11am (he could only get a 1/2 day from work). Maria had thoughtfully left crafts and things for Maiya and I to do. We colored Easter eggs (I had to call my mom to find out how long it takes to hard boil an egg - yes I am 31 years old and I don't know this), then we made no-wax candles from a little kid candle making kit. Then I looked at the clock and realized it was only 7:30am! Yipes!

So I had to get creative with things to keep her busy. For most of the day we ended up making paper puppets of every single family member and then backgrounds and putting on a little play. I will have to get these from her to scan because they are so cute. Then we made her new baby sister a birthday card with a drawing of a cake with no candles because as she explained you only get candles starting at one year old and since she was just born - no candles.

All of Maiya's blood checks went well and so did her insulin shot. She even said I did a good job! Yay! Praise from a 5 year old is true praise, because they don't lie!

Around 6:30pm we took Maiya to see her new baby sister, Madison, and the look on Maiya's face when she saw her was priceless! She was so excited!

OK now I have lots of work to catch up on. I am still recovering from yesterday. It was fun, exciting and exhausting all rolled into one day.
Monday, April 17, 2006
my little sunshine
Today we went over to my niece's house to practice everything we need to do to take care of her and manage her diabetes. Tomorrow we'll be taking care of her while my sister in-law has her new baby!

I wanted to make sure I practiced giving Maiya her evening shot at least once. I am confident with her blood checks but didn't feel as comfortable with the shots. I managed to do it just fine. I was more nervous than Maiya. My hands were shaking! At first Maiya was a little hesitant saying she wanted her mommy to do it, but then she let me. Boy was I relieved it was over! But I really feel better having practiced so that way tomorrow I'll be set.

Here's a little drawing that Maiya gave us tonight. Paul is the guy floating overhead (Maiya explained he has a cape so he can fly) - note the 3 strands of hair. Pat is to the left (also with 3 pieces of hair) then Maria, then me with my legs kicking up, then Maiya and finally the new baby sister who will be born tomorrow! Oh and Benny the family's yellow lab is next to Maria (he has a red nose!)

She's quite the budding artist isn't she!!
Sunday, April 16, 2006
easter memories
When this photo was taken of me as a little girl, I was living in NY. My parents gave me a new Barbie as an Easter present and in the original of this photo I am holding it up for the camera. I remember the neighbor girl coming over and asking if she could play with my Barbie to which I replied "not yet, it's too new to share." hee hee! what a typical "only child" answer! I still don't like to share my new toys when I first get them. I guess some things never change.

Another Easter memory I have is of the ubiquitous Easter egg hunt. I was always the kid who could never find the eggs as fast as the other kids. I remember seeing an egg on a lawn chair and running towards it only to have a little boy swoop in and snatch it before I could reach it.

And then there was the dramatic plastic egg incident. When I was three years old I thought it would be a good idea to take 1/2 of a plastic Easter egg and smash the sharp rim against my forehead. This resulted in lots of blood and drama and a trip to go and get stitches. I still have the scar today and every time I see a plastic Easter egg I have a little giggle.
Saturday, April 15, 2006
cleaning house
My brother and sister in-law and their three children are in town from Ohio for Easter break. Last night we were up late visiting and catching up with them. We're going to have everyone over to our house tonight so today I am cleaning up and making everything spiffy!

I'm also going to try and sneak in a little
work before everyone arrives because I know this will be a crazy week with everyone here and the new baby coming on Tuesday (if not before).

I'm all set to take care of my niece Maiya while she waits for her baby sister to arrive!

I have been trying to think of things for us to do during the wait to make the time go faster. I even broke out all my old issues of Martha Stewart Kids to look for projects to keep us busy -- I am so sad they canceled that magazine, I love it - the design, the illustrations plus the projects and we don't even have kids!
Thursday, April 13, 2006
it's thursday!
Just a regular old day today, worked on stuff and have to pack it all up to ship out tomorrow. I hate the packing and shipping part, but it must be done!

I think I might be brave and try to have the postman pick up the packages again. I tried having my postman pick up my orders a few weeks ago and he was grumpy about it. I don't think he liked leaving his truck and coming to the door to get the packages. But now I think I'll try it again. Wish me luck!

Here's a PoppetTM Sketch commission that I finished up and am packing up to ship out tomorrow. These girls are so sweet.

I've also been helping my friend Bernie with
her blog. Bernie runs her own grassroots animal rescue and she is an amazing gal. I've created a new blog for her on blogger so that way it would be more functional than her old one and easier for people to donate supplies to her.
Wednesday, April 12, 2006
come play along!
Paul and I just taped a new Quick Collage Podcast and just like before, we'd like you to play along too!

The Theme for this Podcast is: "friend"

Here's how to play: make an artwork around the theme of "friend".

Create a JPG of your finished piece and a write a little sentence or two about your thoughts while working on the piece, send it all to us at quickcollage@aol.com by midnight on Saturday April 22nd and we'll post them up when we air the podcast on Monday the 24th!

Remember to keep the focus on working fast and having fun! The Quick Collage Podcasts are all about the process, not the final product!

See if you can do it in 20 minutes - if it takes you longer we'll never know!
Tuesday, April 11, 2006
smile!
I went to the dentist today. I like going to the dentist, it feels good to have my teeth checked and nice and bright. Since I am a good girl and floss every night, I get lots of accolades from the hygienist. Probably one of the reasons I like going is all the praise I get! It is the closest thing I get to a report card as an adult. I had a long conversation with the hygienist about the new Oral B Triumph toothbrush. I bought the Triumph about 6 months ago and love it. But then I discovered that you can use the same brush heads on the older models so I felt a little duped for buying it when I could have just bought the new brush heads.

After the dentist, I ran around doing errands; going to the bank, the drug store, the grocery store, the post office and finally home. By the time I made it home I had a huge migraine.

I did manage to get a little work done tonight after the migraine meds kicked in. I'm going to get to bed so I can get a early start tomorrow

Monday, April 10, 2006
i can do laundry again
Our dryer conked out yesterday. I went to dry the loads of laundry that I brought home from my last trip and put them in the dryer, started it, and it made an ominous screeching sound as the drum turned. ut oh.

So I hung all the wet laundry around the house and pretended I was in Italy.

Today I called the repairman. I had to call 3 different places to get one who would fix a Frigidaire dryer. On the third try, I got lucky and the guy came out today and fixed it. Seems when our dryer was being born at the factory they ran out of small screws. So some bright person said "oh it doesn't matter I'll put a longer screw in." So then our dryer came home with us and this long screw slowly grinded the bearings away until it broke. I am glad he found what was causing it or else it would have broken again in another couple months.

It was neat to see what the inside of the dryer looked like. When he took out the drum I peeked inside, there's not a whole lot to a dryer. Just a big drum and a heating coil and a fan. I quizzed the repairman on which appliances he fixes the most (refrigerators) and which brands of appliances (Frigidaire). Then I looked around our kitchen and saw we have 3 Frigidaire appliances - eeep! Knock on wood nothing else breaks.

Sunday, April 09, 2006
tax time!
I had a really busy couple of days. Working on commissions, catching up with email etc. Today I did my 1st quarter taxes for this year. Thankfully we had already done our 2005 taxes so we didn't have to do both at the same time.

Saturday night we rented
Brokeback Mountain. We decided to see what all the fuss was about. It was a good movie but I wasn't as into it as I thought I would be. I spent the first 1/2 of the movie worrying about the sheep on the mountain and if they would be eaten by coyotes and the second 1/2 trying to understand what Heath Ledger was saying. I am glad I saw it, but I liked Crash better and I wished I had rented Capote. Maybe next week.
Friday, April 07, 2006
back to normal
Everything's back to normal today. I was super busy working on commissions and other work etc. Here's a PoppetTM Canvas commission that I just sent out today. I love this family, what sweeties! I especially like how the kitty pokes his head around the legs of the little boy.

Thanks for all the well wishes for Toby! He's totally recovered and playing with Paul right now. I called the vet this morning and he told me to take him off the meds that were upsetting his tummy (I had already stopped anyway) and we'll try again in a few days with a lower dosage. Tonight I gave him a bath to help with his skin allergies and he was not a happy camper. I do the washing and Paul does the drying, so Paul gets to be the good guy! hey!

After bathtime for Toby we rented
Crash and relaxed while Toby glowered at us and made us feel guilty. What a great movie. Loved it.
Thursday, April 06, 2006
oh no! toby feels sick!
Paul went to ceramics class tonight so I spent the evening packing and shipping artwork to send out. Just when I was thinking I'd have a really productive night ..... Toby got sick.

The vet had given us some medicine yesterday for a skin allergy and warned us that he might get nauseous after taking it, but poor little T, he got really sick! Of course he ran across the house to be sick on our Pottery Barn rug and not the easy to clean laminate floor, but I didn't mind.

So I spent the night alternating between trying to get work done and running him outside. All he wanted to do was eat the grass, but I was worried about there being chemicals that he could ingest so I tried to get him to eat lettuce leaves from the fridge. He didn't want anything to do with the lettuce and gave me a dirty look.

He seems to be feeling better now, he's sleeping. yay!

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Wednesday, April 05, 2006
toby goes to the vet
Toby and I went to the vet today for his annual exam. Poor little guy started shaking and shivering as soon as we walked in the door. He's like "akkk not this place I just thought we were going for a car ride! "

He got a clean bill of health and all his vaccines so we are good to go for another year. We had to wait at the vet for awhile because there was an emergency before us so it took us a couple hours. Luckily I brought a good book to read to help pass the time.

Once I got home I started on
commissions to try and get caught up. I managed to make a little bit of headway which is pretty good for the first full day back in the studio. Tomorrow I hope to be back in full swing.

oh, before I forget.... Nina, has written a great write-up of ArtFest with photos too!
Check it out.

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Tuesday, April 04, 2006
travel dreams
Between yesterday and last night I accrued 18 hours of sleep! After sleeping 6 hours yesterday I still managed to sleep 12 hours last night. All my dreams consisted of various travel scenarios, missing airplanes, losing luggage etc. I should feel all caught up but I am still sleepy. I guess I wore myself out more than I thought.

Today (when I finally woke up) I spent all day catching up on email. My mailbox was overflowing, I am still working my way though it, so if I haven't emailed you back I am getting to you!

I'm going to try to have an early night and catch up on more sleep. Toby has a vet appointment early in the morning. Shhh... I haven't told him about it yet so he doesn't know.
Monday, April 03, 2006
back in the nest
I am back and I feel like I got run over by a truck! Artfest was amazing and so much fun (as always!) but that red-eye home is a killer. Nina and I had a good day yesterday killing time. The day that ArtFest ends is the longest day in the world waiting for our late night flights. We checked out of ArtFest at 10am and then had breakfast and dawdled in Port Townsend.

Then we headed over to downtown Seattle with no destination in mind. We drove around until we found an area that looked like we wanted to get out. Upon seeing the Cheesecake Factory, Pottery Barn and J Crew I declared that we would be stopping here and Nina agreed. Both Nina and I discussed that we probably should have been adventuresome and seen parts of Seattle that don't consist of the same stores that we have at home, but we were both too tired to be frisky and safe chain type stores felt the way to go. We had
lunch and then decided to kill time by seeing a movie. We saw Thank You For Smoking which was hilarious and witty and a perfect way to spend two hours. After that the time flew and it we headed to the airport to wait for our 11:30pm flights.

My dad picked me up at the airport at 8am this morning (thank you, dad!) and as soon as I got home I got all ready for bed. I realized I had been up for 24 hours straight. No wonder I feel like I got hit by a semi.

Thank you my
wonderful husband for blogging for me while I was away!
Sunday, April 02, 2006
thanks for the memories!
Well kids, the time has come to say goodbye to my blogging responsibilities. No more lectures about behaving and chatting about NCAA basketball..sniff, sniff. We had fun but even more fun is on the way once Claudine gets home tomorrow morning. YIPPEE! It will be a long flight but I'm sure she will post a little something Monday evening to let you know all about ArtFest. There may be a picture or 2 as well. Until the next podcast, I'll leave you with profound words of the immortal Fred Rogers (who by the way, graduated from a small college just outside of Orlando)

"It's such a good feeling to know you're alive. It's such a happy feeling: You're growing inside. And when you wake up ready to say, I think I'll make a snappy new day. It's such a good feeling, a very good feeling you know that we're friends"
Saturday, April 01, 2006
weekend is here!
Howdy folks! Well, the weekend is finally here. Ok, everybody...in their best Homer Simpson impression say.....WOOHOO!

Only a couple more days until Claudine gets home! I talked with her yesterday but she only had a couple seconds to chat because there were only 30 minutes between teaching and vending night at artfest. She brought some sketches and books to sell so hopefully it went well. She must have been wiped out after all that.

Today is another busy day for her but fortunately, she's just about finished. Saturday has been significantly less hectic for me! Let's see...I took Toby out for several walkies, tended to the kitties, mowed the lawn, had lunch, took a HUUUUGE nap and washed the car.

Tonight, I'll be super-extra busy sitting on the couch and watching the Final Four college basketball games. It's very hard work but somebody has to do it! Anybody wanna predict the champion? My money is on UF but I'm biased because we live in Florida. Well, that's it for now. Signing off..over and out.

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