Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Letting Go...For a Good Cause!

I just love creating art and sewing my heart out...I really do put the LOVE into my work and hope that when people receive my creations they enjoy them as much as I did when I made them.  It's hard for me to let them go sometimes, but I totally believe in the causes & people that I am able to contribute to from the sale of my goodies.

This year, I have really enjoyed a whole new world of crafting...mixed media!  I love it because ANYTHING rules!  =)  Inspired by Traci Bautista, mixed media guru and author of the best selling book, "Collage Unleashed," I ventured into the world of painting in a free and spontaneous manner.  Then comes the layers of texture, collage and free motion much fun and totally addicting!  One of my favorite things about it is recycling & UPcycling paper & other things that would otherwise end up in a landfill as trash!

These 5 mini books are for a swap that I am participating in for the "Collage Unleashed" yahoo group.  Each of the participants are to create 5 mini books & send them off to the host...we get a return package of 5 assorted books from other artists!  What fun!

So here are the mini books I created...

hand painted papers...
I UPcycled an old dress that I got from my sewing class to create the red hearts!!!

UPcycled papers, various stencils and free motion sewing...

all tied together with string...have I told you how much I just love this stuff??!!

Here is my table with plenty of things going on!  Victorious for Elizabeth & Lymenaide mini books in the works... well as the Victorious for Lyme Wrist Cuffs in the back...

...and some new things to help in the Gulf Rescue & Clean-Up efforts...

I have a show planned for Saturday, July 24th at the Cypress Community Festival & will be featuring several projects I'm working on for one charity or another.

I hope you'll stop by my booth, learn about Lyme disease & pick up some unique handmade creations, all made with love for a good cause. =)

If you are interested in contributing something on behalf of these or other charities, please let me know & I will make them available at my booth.  You can email me at:, or leave me a comment below.

Happy Creating!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Simple Pleasures & Gratitude

I'm grateful to have so many blessings...things that I have often taken for granted.
Yesterday was filled with simple pleasures, fun and lots of gratitude...

My girls were like "pigs in mud!"  It was so great to see them so filled with happiness and joy...the simplest things can be so meaningful.  I didn't mind that we were not dressed for the occasion, but allowed them to just be kids and; have a good time playing.  =)  I managed to splash around a bit too...
my toes in the water...

So for me, yesterday was a bit of therapy and reflection on what the important things in my life are.  Enjoying the moment with the ones you love, letting go of the things that hold you back and spreading sunshine wherever you go.

I have had a "mission statement" for myself for over 10 years now...(wow, it's been that long!) and one of the things I had written down was to "spread sunshine wherever I go."  I used to say that some people light up the room when they leave, because they are so negative!  It's true and you have to "protect" yourself from their bad energy...I usually try to kill them with kindness!  Doesn't always work, but you move on and focus your thoughts on the good things you want for your life.  Holding a grudge is like a eats away at your very core and doesn't allow you to grow.

When I look at my life and start to feel sorry for myself, all I need to do is look at the circumstances of another to find my gratitude.  I've been looking a lot at Elizabeth Chalker and the torturous suffering she is facing alone.  Her story has moved me..moved me to the core and into action.  I contacted her and asked if I could do a special project for her using her clothing...she sent me a box full of things & I cried taking each item out as I read her letter to me.

Here is Elizabeth, before Lyme...                                     and here she is after years of misdiagnosis...

Here is some of my recent work for the Victorious For Elizabeth project.  

Please share with those you know and find out how you can help here:


Monday, June 21, 2010

Winner , Wrist Cuffs & Collaboration!

Drum roll please...we have a winner!  =)

Congrats to Diane Ballou, the 6th entry of the giveaway!!  Please email your address to: to claim your custom quilted "Optical Delusion" wallet!  =)

She shared these comments with us:

I have had Lyme disease since 2001. I was on a camping weekend in Durham, NC when I was infected. I got the bullseye rash. Then my hands began to swell and become extremely painful. I was very lucky, after 5 months of not finding anyone to treat me, I found a wonderful Lyme Doctor. I was in treatment for only 1 year before I went into remission. I was in remission for almost 7 years when I had a major spinal surgery and with my body being under so much stress, the remission was gone and I am now in full blown active chronic Lyme. My first symptoms were the bullseye rash, followed by swollen, painful hands.
Thanks to everyone who participated & shared their story with us.  I think it is really important for everyone to know what the early symptoms are so they can get treated right away...after the first 30 days, you're looking at a long term chronic infection, the kind that the IDSA says doesn't exist, but is rather "the aches and pains of daily living."  Those in the Lyme community, the actual patients (like those who commented on my blog) & the Lyme Literate Medical Doctors (LLMD) don't agree with the IDSA...and neither do I.

Why would the IDSA say that???  Good's the question I had when I started to dig around the Internet & find out about this strange disease that had taken hold of my dad, years after infection & well into treatment.  Why would the IDSA say that there is no such thing as "Chronic Lyme Disease?"  

I believe it is because of money, plain & simple.  The Lyme documentary, "Under Our Skin" exposes the epidemic of Lyme and the politics that surround it.  It is a shameful thing.  Because of the way the IDSA wrote up the "guidelines" for treatment, it allows the insurance companies to DENY treatment.  After all, you can treat a disease that doesn't exist!  But to the Lyme patients out there, the pain & suffering is undeniable, with or without your insurance company's'll do anything, spend any amount of money in the hopes of regaining your health.

As a craftivist, I want to use my talents & abilities to reach out & help others.  I joined forces with the Lymenaide team, who share the same passion for awareness & activism that I do.  I am designing & sewing up a series of Lyme inspired wrist cuffs & other sewn items for Lymenaide, The Vampire Diaries & more.

I am seeking out others to help me with a project that has really touched my heart.  Elizabeth Chalker is a single woman who lives in Florida.  Due to years of misdiagnosis, her condition has deteriorated to the point where she needs extensive specialized treatment, amounting to over $100,000 for just the first year!  She lives alone with only her dog, Symon, for companionship and weekly visits from her friend & mom, Corey Cameron.
There are no special programs that she qualifies for & has been abandoned by her friends & family.  Despite fundraising efforts, she is $45,000 away from starting her life-saving treatment.  It is my hope, that after you visit her website, you too will be touched by her story & moved to help in whatever way you can. 

Victorious For Elizabeth...a project where I'm hoping to bring crafters & "Lymies" together to use their resources to help Elizabeth Chalker get the help she needs.  Here is a sneak peek at the wrist cuffs I have been designing & sewing for her fundraiser...

I welcome donations for this project.  I am specifically looking for lots of purple prints & butterflies for Elizabeth.  Here is a little list of the types of things that I can use:
  • purple fabric
  • beads of all kinds
  • fiber...I don't have much right now & could really use it
  • thread...purple, variegated, metallic
  • trim...again, think deep purple
  • butterflies...especially looking for a transparent blue or purple variety
  • Big buttons or glass closures/beads for the wrist your buttons from old clothing!
If you'd like to donate money for me to buy supplies, that is always appreciated as well.  Fabric & material donations can be mailed to:

Victorious Vixen
P.O. Box 2404
Cypress, CA 90630

If you are crafty, creative & would like to participate in this project somehow, or if you have ideas on other ways to help, please leave a comment below or email me at:

I am really looking forward to collaborating with other artists!  =)

Sending my love & positive thoughts out to my Lyme friends & supporters...your stories continue to inspire me to push forward with the intention of creating positive change!


Friday, June 11, 2010

Press Kits, Vampires, Giveaway, Oh my!

Giveaway is closed & a winner is being chosen...thank you!  =)

Hi guys!

We've made great progress on the Lyme Awareness front...check out the amazing new Lyme PSA's (Public Service Announcements) that Lymenaide produced!  My favorite PSA is "poppy seed" because it illustrates just how small those pesky ticks are!

I don't know about you, but I've never seen a PSA on TV for Lyme disease, nor did I know about how to protect myself from getting it!  It's growing at an alarming rate across the globe and we think it deserves some air time!  Right now, across North America, there are 203 Lymenaide PSA Press Kits that are making their way into mailboxes & news stations.  46 volunteers in the Lyme community have stepped up & agreed to send their testimonial out with the Press Kits, in the hopes that the PSA will make it on the air.

Ashely, her husband & her dog Lucy all came to help me package up the Press Kits...well, Lucy did her part to recycle the boxes!  It was a steamy hot day in my cramped place, but we managed to get the bulk of the work done that day.  Sorry for the heat guys, I hope the cherries & goodie platter helped some!

PSA Kits are printed & ready to ship out! Who else wants some... on TwitpicAshley working away in the 'sweat shop!' It was steamy hot to... on TwitpicLucy 'helping' us put the PSA press kits together...and Sande... on Twitpic

The exciting part is that we are just getting started!  There are more Lyme awareness & activism projects in the pipeline & I am hope you'll be a part of them.  =)

The Vampire Diaries cast members have been tremendous supporters of our efforts & have been featured in many of the PSA's.  Check out this video montage one of their fans, @TVD_Chloe, made of our PSAs and posted on her YouTube Channel-

Chloe, along with many others, is offering a donation for each follower they receive on Twitter/Facebook, etc, so please check out to for's a simple way that you can help without having to spend any money!  =)

Okay, I'm feelin' all the love here & I do love a good giveaway.  It's high time I did one here on my blog so I'm offering up the last Red, Black & White Optical Delusion wallet of the series.  I sent one off to one of the cast members of The Vampire Diaries, so you'll have the companion to hers!  Have a look at what you can win...
Custom Quilted...   

 Funky Fresh...

Gift Wrapped &
Made with Love...

Here is how you can win!!
  • If you have Lyme, please share when & where you were infected.  
  • For an additional entry, please leave a comment what your first symptoms were.

  • If you don't have Lyme, please watch this trailer for "Under Our Skin," a new documentary about Lyme disease & the controversy surrounding it...then leave a comment.
  • For an additional entry, please share this trailer on facebook & or Twitter & leave me a link to your post.

1 comment = 1 are some extra ways you can enter:
    So that's all folks!  Be sure and leave a comment for each thing that you do for it to count.  The giveaway ends on Friday, 6/18 at 11:59 PM...thanks & good luck!

    Wishing you all the best,
    --Nani   =)