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February 02, 2014

Big Allie braving the snow

J's favorite breakfast - Eggs Benedict

Sarah and Trudy

the boys watching for snow plows so they can bark at them


I tend to bore Jack

Emerson and Oliver do everything in-sync

Valentine's Day is coming!

A touch of snow, temp's above freezing and happy animals sums up our weekend.

It was so nice to finally have temp's in the mid to upper 30's to begin to melt some of the snow and ice.  The Coop Girls were thrilled to be able to get out and stretch their legs and the dogs were excited to not be freezing when they went out to do their business.  I even made iced cappuccino's on Saturday.  So it wasn't THAT warm, but after the negative and single digit temp's, it felt as if it was.  All is good.

I've been working on our new online store for our Cobble Hill Farm Handcrafted Soap products.  I can't wait.  We'll still have an Etsy store for some of our items, but most will be sold through the store.  I'm hoping it's only a couple of weeks away.

Happy Super Bowl Sunday!  We'll be watching the big game - cheering for the Seahawks.  Sorry to you Denver fans, I would cheer for the Bronco's if the Seahawks weren't playing, but being born and raised in Washington State, well, you have to celebrate the small victories of the team.

I have to say that I  receive so many nice comments and kind emails and although I respond to them individually, I want to say a public "thank you".  You don't know how much they are appreciated.  I have to chuckle when some of you have mentioned that I am "creative" and here's why.

A few years ago I decided to take my first ever {and only} evening art class at a local college.  It was supposed to be a basic painting class, teaching us the basics of achieving color and layering.  Instead, our assignments were very loosely instructed and were about shape and depth.  Until our final project.  On our final project, we were suddenly supposed to break out the paints and figure out layering. 

Our assignment was to choose a photo from a magazine, recreate that photo exactly on one canvas, and then paint an exact opposite {on the color wheel} on another canvas.  Problems were:  1.  I had never taken a drawing class, 2.  We hadn't been taught anything about painting as of yet.   Hmmm....  The professor took us to the library where she showed us a gorgeous painting from one of her former students and told us this was the expectation.  The gasps from my classmates were loud.  Very loud.  A couple of the students tried to explain we hadn't been taught anything about paint yet, but the professor refused to listen.

So, what can you do?  I decided to just jump in.  I showed up to the next class with my 2 canvas's which I had already roughly drawn the photo on.  I had chosen a photo of a butterfly on an Echinacea flower.  Once the class had begun, I raised my hand.  The professor came to me and I explained that I wasn't sure where to start with painting and asked her to help.  She smiled and said "you need to figure this out".  She walked away.  We all looked at each other in disbelief.  I took my paint and began to recreate the exact version.  The professor began walking around the room, looking at our projects.  She stopped at my work space.  "WHAT are you doing????" she demanded.  My response was simple - "painting".  She looked at me like I had 3 heads.  "That will never work" she said, shaking her head.  I explained to her that I had to figure out what to do since I received no direction, and this is how I decided to tackle it.  She looked at me, again in disbelief, and said "Staci, what is your degree in?"  I answered - Biology/Pre-Med.  She smiled and said "you need to stick with analytic things - you'll never be creative".  And with that she walked off.

No help, no words of encouragement.  Nothing nice at all.

Fast forward to when I turned in my final assignment.  We had to put them on the wall when we entered our last class.  I was pretty excited for her to see mine because I thought they turned out very good considering I had absolutely no idea what I was doing.  After hanging mine, the professor walked up to me and said "oh my God it worked!".  I smiled.  She ended up choosing my paintings as the best in the class.  Who would have thought?  She never apologized but she did tell me she thought mine were good enough to hang in the library which I took as some sort of apology.

Sure - initially I was angry at her for what she had said and her nonchalant attitude about it all.  I thought she was stupid and insensitive.  But then I got over it and decided to learn something from it - it was a reminder that words are very powerful.  Whether they are used in a positive or negative way, they have the ability to change someone's life, including your own.

Hoping you are having a wonderful weekend!

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