Friends for Lula

While painting at Suzy’s, her two girls spied my illustrations for Learning Lula (the children’s book I’m illustrating for CC). Charmed that I had turned their friend (CC’s daughter) into a cartoon, they asked me to draw them into the story too. How could I say no? I penned these representations of the girls and they got to pick out their outfits and which stuffie they would hold. Lilli has been a giraffe fan forever, so she asked for one on her shirt as well. Such cute girls. It was a pleasure doing this for them. And to see how pleased they were was worth every stroke.

Their mom, meanwhile is rockin’ an awesomely inspiring blog over at blanckslate.com. Check out the colors! She also has an amazing space at instagram and pinterest. Many of my inspirations come from her beautiful spirit.

Info graphique

Franglish is my second language. That or I like to up the ante when it comes to creating something as dull as an info graphic. Well, whichever it is, here’s my latest painting for CDE Associates

In process…

Olive you

This little girl (CC’s in fact) is coming to life on paper. I love to play with lines to see what happens. I’ve been sketching for days and this is what is coming of it. I’m headed to CC’s tonight for more crafting and creating. These illustrations will soon be moving into a series of children’s books called Learning Lula…

 

PMP my ride

Ok, it’s time to get real. What exactly is a former graphic designer turned greeting card manufacturer turned corporate lackey doing in the midst of another retirement? Well, this one decided to reinvent herself. Again. My latest accomplishment is receiving certification as a Project Management Professional (PMP). More on that at the end of the post, but for now just know I am glad the exam is over! Yowser.

It’s been six months since COTY/philosophy, inc.—my last training ground for what’s next—decided NYC was a better place to be than PHX. Since then I have pulled together groups of fantastically intelligent, funny and cool people into small groups (dubbed “Conversation Bubbles”) just to see what would happen. Wow! Here’s what has happened so far…

The Hatchery
Where it all started (the first Conversation Bubble), the Hatchery is six of my most creative, energized friends. We come together once a month to invent stuff. The following is the output of the group so far.

The Clarity Pages
Aptly named for one needing to get her shit together, The Clarity Pages exploded into existence two months ago and will be used for training CEO and other top executives on what’s what in their world. The first session is through the American Express Leadership Academy starting next month. The concept centers around gaining clarity on who you really are and aligning your daily activities to your true authenticity. Brilliant! The app is due out early next year and I smell a book deal soon after that.

The POP Project
The power of play has been on my mind for a year as I dealt with the anxiety of What’s Next. CC and I played a lot during the Great Recession and from that we know for a fact that play (in my case painting and vision journaling) is how the mind reinvents itself, creating new neural pathways that lead to new thoughts and invention. This year I have read extensively on the subject of play and how it affects the mind. Recently, I joined a group at ASU who are contributing to the research on the subject. An interactive talk is being planned for next year.

The Joy Conference
One of the Conversation Bubbles turned into a planning committee for a conference set to run next May. The conference centers on learning how to have fun as an overworked, underappreciated woman of the 21st Century.

The Exchange
This is another Conversation Bubble where participants bring their talents and we exchange expertise. My skills (listed above) are mixed with writers, theologians, and artists. We meet every week to discuss ideas and train each other on the finer details of our own talents.

CDE Associates, LLC
This is where the rubber meets the road. CDE Associates is a group of my most highly trained, intelligent associates who are changing the way large marketing companies grow their business. We are using proven project management techniques (which is where the PMP comes in) and specifically designed improvement tools to align—and in some cases realign—business models with the company’s authentic vision. We focus on the people, because happy people make healthy companies. We incorporate creative cores, align the marketing strategy to execution abilities, and inject the joy of life into business.

So there you have it. It’s been a productive six months. I can’t wait to see what bubbles up in the next six months.

A moving palace that floats in the air with balconies and clear water flowing through

“Moving Water” ~ The Soul of Rumi

When you do things from your soul, you feel a river
moving in you, a joy.

When actions come from another section, the feeling
disappears. Don’t let

others lead you. They may be blind or, worse, vultures.
Reach for the rope

of God. And what is that? Putting aside self-will.
Because of willfulness

people sit in jail, the trapped bird’s wings are tied,
fish sizzle in the skillet.

The anger of police is willfulness. You’ve seen a magistrate
inflict visible punishment. Now

see the invisible. If you could leave your selfishness, you
would see how you’ve

been torturing your soul. We are born and live inside
black water in a well.

How could we know what an open field of sunlight is? Don’t
insist on going where

you think you want to go. Ask the way to the spring. Your
living pieces will form

a harmony. There is a moving palace that floats in the air
with balconies and clear

water flowing through, infinity everywhere, yet contained
under a single tent.

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