Blessed Beyond Words

Friends, with the holidays right around the corner . . . . (literally . . . we can see them . . . right there), we can’t even begin to tell you how blessed we have been in our little shoppe this year! We are so grateful to each and everyone of you who have spent some of YOUR valuable and precious time with US. We know how hectic life can be for everyone, and the fact that so many came and spent time making art with us – well, we are just so grateful! Here are just a few photos of happy days (and classes) spent this past month. Oh, HAPPY DAYS!!!!

Looking forward to what trouble we can get into NEXT MONTH, dear friends!

Wishing you all much love and peace! 

Too Soon? (We don’t think so!)

Oh, my friends . . . the recent cool weather in the midwest has me feeling all sorts of happy FALL thoughts. And as we finalize our October Calendar . . . all I can say, is that I am ready for the sweaters, jeans, football, pumpkin spice lattes, candles burning, and raking leaves!!! (I know!! I know!! I must be crazy!)

I don’t want to panic you too much, but my daughter did share with me that Christmas is 108 days away.  (WHAT!!?!?!! AHHHHH!!!!) Ok . . ok . . I will leave Christmas alone for right now. But . . . FALL . . . oh, my friends, I am READY!

We have lots of awesome projects planned in the shoppe this Fall (below are just a few!) Laura and I have been brain storming, creating and gearing up for lots of great creative times! Don’t forget to take a look at our “CLASSES” tab and make sure to call us (815-905-3068) to sign up for any of the upcoming classes. They are filling up fast, and we would LOVE to see you in our shoppe this Fall!

As always, much peace to you and yours! 


Finding Time for Art

IMG_4356Sometimes it is hard to fit in time to create. Sometimes ART falls to the very bottom of the list – and is often lost completely between all the things happening in life.

But sometimes MAKING ART is the very thing we need for our spirit.

My oldest daughter started High School this week. Yes, first born . . . and first day in a   g r e a t   B I G  High School. This was a pretty huge transition for her (as it is for all kids, of course), and aside from trying to fill her with positive thoughts and “You CAN DO THIS!” moments – I felt completely lost at helping her with the anxiety she felt of starting this next chapter in her life. As she nervously packed her lunch the night before day one, she asked if I could draw a little doodle on her lunch bag, and I was THRILLED!!!   “THIS, I CAN DO!!” I thought to myself.

IMG_3805With my trusty microns and a stack of lunch bags in hand, I got to work. But not just on one . . . I spent an hour with Pinterest on the iPad and my marker at work . . . Doodling one after another of inspirational quotes and thoughts. I pulled up random creative lettering pins on Pinterest and replicated a number of them, while finding my breathing becoming calm and peaceful as I doodled away. Replicating the quotes was all I needed – it allowed me to practice my lettering skills (practice makes perfect) without having to ‘think’ about the creative process. And I felt like I was actually doing something to help my daughter. (A win – WIN!)

Sometimes we have to really force ourselves to stop life for a minute – and just doodle. Just get back to basics. Nothing fancy. Just some markers, and a few paper bags. We are starting a new class in September here at the Shoppe called “Back to Basics” where we will take a pencil, a sketchbook, and some sharpies and just doodle – kind of like the lunch bags. We will focus on lettering, zendoodling, and how to approach creative time. We will meet monthly (or bi-weekly, whatever the group decides). If you need some time just for you – I hope you will consider joining us. (Call the Shoppe for more information 815.905.3068).

Oh, and my daughter? She had a fantastic first day, and said that the new friends she made at lunch absolutely LOVED the doodle on her bag and said they hoped this was going to become a daily thing (little did they know I have a whole months worth all ready!!) So grateful that both of us got something out of that time with art.

Here’s wishing you time for your art, my friend.





THANK YOU Summer Craft Club!

As we approach the beginning of the school year, and all our friends return to their busy schedules of learning (and lots of fun, we hope), we wanted to just take a minute to thank our AWESOME Summer Craft Club Friends who spent 6 Mondays with us this  summer making art and flying with their Creative Wings! 


You were such a great group of young ladies to spend the mornings with – I couldn’t think of a better place to be than right here in our little shoppe with all of you! 

We hope you all have a GREAT school year! Keep making art and sharing it with the world. You each are fantastic, and we know you are going to do GREAT THINGS this year. Come and visit us as often as you can, and when you are next in the shoppe – take a look at the back of the store for your “Handprint” art that we made during class! I love that I can have a little piece of your art here for everyone to enjoy! 


Hope to see all of you again next summer for

Summer Craft Camp 2018!!


Loving All the Good Things


We updated our gallery wall yesterday. Our husbands came in and helped as we rearranged and added new art to our Workshop Samples (we are so very grateful to them for their support – and elbow grease!) And today I sat at the shoppe, awaiting the arrival of our Summer Camp artists, and I just took in all the work we did.  

I love our wall. 

And our little shoppe.

And I count my blessings for all the good that happens within these walls.

The Art. The encouragement. The sharing. The laughter. The faith. 

Good things, my friends.

Thank you for being a part of it with us. 

Finding Ourselves through Art

We have had so many wonderful moments since we have opened our little Creative Wings Art Shoppe. People who have walked in full of doubt and uncertainty at their own artistic ability end up leaving with a wide smile and feeling of pride at the art they have made. And friends . . . THAT is what is all about. I truly believe that absolutely anyone can make art . . . all it takes is a little faith and a little inspiration. And it has always been our wish that when you are in our shoppe – you feel both of those things. 

We also have these experiences when a visitors eyes fill up with tears while they experience some sort of magical moment here. Whether they are making art for a loved one, listening to a story of inspiration, or taking the environment in and having an “Ah-ha” moment with a particular piece that they just  . . . feel. 

I love those moments. Every single one of them. 

And I have to share a recent one that still leaves me with goosebumps. 

We offer a really lovely “Teen/Tween Art Journaling” club here at our shoppe. (Your teen or tween can join us at any time . . . just call the shoppe for more information about it.) When we first met, each student received a lovely package of art journaling goodies (a journal, markers, water colors, glue, scrapbook papers, washi tape, stickers, and a few other things.) Our first club gathering was spent talking about what art journaling is, and working on a few pages to start our journals off. The girls did a fantastic job!! (I truly was so proud of them all!)

But there was one moment that I will never forget.

I gave the girls a journaling prompt to work on in their journals. The prompt was to make a page completing the following thought, “I am . . . “ I provided them with suggestions like “I am funny, I am kind, I am tough.” And gave them each some papers and paints to work on their pages. 

That is when the magic began.

They each were so focused and got right to work with little prompting – they had a vision . . . each one of them.

I love visions.

When they finished their page, I asked if they wanted to share what their page was about. They each eagerly agreed.

“I am . . . UNIQUE,” one of the girls said. “I am unique because people always say I am weird, but I take that as a compliment.”

“I am . . . HAPPY,” another said. “I have a home, a family, food on my table.”

“I am . . . BEAUTIFUL,” said a third. 

“I am . . . SMART,” said the last. “At school a lot of kids call me stupid, so I wrote ‘I AM SMART’. Because, I AM smart. And when I look at this – I will remember that.” 

My friends . . . these are the moments that melt my heart. 

These are the experiences I wish for the children, and adults, who come to our classes. These are the moments I hope those who take a chance and walk through our doors will have. These are the moments I dreamt of having in our little shoppe. 

And they are happening. 

And for that, I feel so incredibly blessed. 

Thank you for being a part of our Creative Wings! 

Lucky 18!!


Oh, my friends . . . Happy almost Summer! We are counting the days here in the shoppe – looking forward to having the kids off from school and spending some time during the days with us. It has been a wonderful Spring for us – with lots of Creative Wings FLYING in and out of 1011 S State Street. And wait until I tell you . . . the last class of April was a milestone for us . . . our LARGEST CLASS YET!!! 18 darling creative souls joined us for our April “Block of the Month”, and my friends . . . it was awesome!!!

WE usually cap off our classes around the 15 mark – but we had a couple extras sneak by us (not really . . . just wanted to include all who wanted to be here!) It was a little tight in our little shoppe, but everyone was a GREAT SPORT and snuggled in at their tables, and the end results were awesome! 

I can’t tell you how incredible it feels to have created this little place in the world. That afternoon of the block class, I stood back and just LOOKED at what was in front of me. While listening to the chatter of excited souls finding their creative wings, I think I pinched myself. 

Some days . . . I can’t believe we are here. 


But I am SO grateful that we are. 

Lucky 18, I will never forget you! 




Peaceful Creating

caged bird start

I love when I can create – really create. When I don’t have a very clear image in my mind of my project, and just let the art kind of take off in whatever direction it wants to go in.  

When my space is quiet and calm.

When I feel most at peace. 

Last night, after a Girl Scout troop finished a private party early here at the shoppe, I took advantage of the extra time I had and found myself in that moment of creating that I haven’t been in for a while.

It’s funny how little time there seems to be to create art – now that we actually own an Art Shoppe! You would think it would be quite the opposite. But it seems now as if most of my days are spent on marketing, developing new classes, preparing for classes, teaching classes, retail, and other business sort of things. The opportunity to really make art . . . it kind of falls to the wayside. 

But last night . . . I played. I glued. I cut. I stamped. I painted. . . I let it unfold.

It was blissful.

I think good things often come from moments like that . . . when you can just play. 

And if you haven’t done it before . . . consider joining us for a night of play.

We’ll be making this above piece on 5/10/2017 – it is our “Caged Bird” project. And I think you will love it. 

I need to allow myself more time like this . . . because taking the time to make some art is so very very good for the soul! 

Our Little Sign (sigh!)

So many of the visitors who have been able to stop by Creative Wings Art Shoppe have more than likely met my sister, Laura and me, Leanne. With each handshake and introduction – the responses we have received have been wonderful – from warm smiles of interest and excitement, to those who have shared that “it just feels so good to be here!” Our little shoppe has become exactly what we have wished it to be. At least once a day Laura sends me a quick text, “How is our little shoppe today?” and I just smile! We truly are living our dreams. 

And this month, after submitting permit application and waiting for the city to give us the OK, we proudly completed another dream. We hung our shoppe sign on the exterior of the building – for all passersby to see. It was a beautiful day . . . a little chilly, but as sunny as could be. Our husbands and our beloved landlord did all the work, as Laura and I anxiously awaited for the job to be complete. Even though we opened November 1, I think parted of me felt that our sign really solidified our place here. Yes, Creative Wings Art Shoppe. HERE WE  ARE!!! 

unnamed (4)

April is gearing up to be an AWESOME month for us, as well. We have some FANTASTIC classes and workshops planned (oh, have you seen our Beauty and the Beast canvas piece yet? It’s stunning!) Make sure you keep an eye on the “classes” tab above. Oh – and we have A BUNCH of new retail items coming in the next two weeks!! I can’t wait to show you what we have ordered. I think you will love it!

Thanks to all of you who are spreading your Creative Wings with us!  See you all soon! 

Good Bye January! Hello February!!

Greetings, dear Creative Friends! The month of January FLEW by . . . and found us settling into our little shoppe and routine nicely. I can’t even believe we have been open a for three months now! Each day I walk into our little shoppe, I find myself loudly exclaiming, “Hello Shoppe!!!” as if I am waking up the creative energy inside. I hope you feel it when you enter our doors. It still feel like a dream – each moment that I am here. Thanks to YOU for being a part of it. 

I’ve made some new art this month – it felt good to take some time and create again. (It’s funny how little time I seem to have to actually create!) I sure am in the mood for Spring (aren’t you?) and just LOVE these little flower blocks. 

And our Creative Wings Angel . . . with our mantra . . .


Ooooo . . . and my new Yoga Girls. Because, every once in a while, you need be just . . . do what it says in the art . . . 😉


All of the above is for sale in our shoppe, if you are interested.

But, I am not the only one creating in these walls. There has been LOTS of creating going on!  What lovely visitors we have had, and what wonderful art has been made!!

Like Vision Boards, and words of the year, and whimsical trees, and Angel Wings! 


I love to look at our POS system (that’s not-so fancy talk for “Point Of Sale” system, for any of my non-retail friends) and see how many Creative Wings have flown since we opened our doors on November 1st. Wouldn’t it be fun to start each month with a TOTAL of Creative Wings (that is, the number of people who have come and taken classes in our shoppe), so we could see the creative souls who have flown! Don’t you? Let’s do that . . . 

So far, since we opened our doors on 11/1/2016 . . . 192 Creative Wings have soared!!! That is 192 people who have taken a workshop or class here . . . 192 . . . many didn’t think they could do it – many didn’t think they could create. And ALL 192 who DID IT!!! 

Happy February Friends! Wishing you lots of Peace this month! And LOTS of creating!