Friday, October 10, 2014

The Big(gest) News

The Murdocks have some big news!  It's the reason the blog hasn't been updated with super amazing and creative posts in the last couple of months.  We are expecting a baby! Due April 2014.  I am beyond excited.  And sick (SO sick).  And tired.  And the house is a mess. And I'm very behind on my huge amount of custom orders (thanks everyone!). 

But seriously,  I am so excited to have another baby.  To make LouLou a big sister.  But, it's also really hard.  It's hard to slow down on my orders, and push back deadlines and know I'm going to have to take a break when the baby comes.  It's hard to be really sick with a toddler.  But then I just remember that my greatest masterpiece I will EVER create--even if I was a really great painter-- would be my children.   Nothing creates as much happiness, and hope for me as my children. It's also much easier with a crazy supportive husband.  Love that man. 

Anyway!  Here are some new family pictures which include the new little addition in the form of my bump.  My friend took pictures of us, and I took pictures of them. It was a great little swap and saved us a bunch of money on a photographer.  SOMEDAY I will pay for a fancy photographer. But, today is not that day.  Enjoy!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Childhood: Perpetual Calendar

Hey All!  I've been a bit (okay super) busy and haven't blogged too much.  BUT, that's about to change as I have a bit more time.  FIRST I wanted to share my new calendar with you all.  It's a perpetual calendar to keep all of your important dates right in front of you.  The best part is that it can be used over and over each year too!  I am so excited to use this calendar and hope one of my readers can use it as well.  I love the little pair of children that go through the seasons.  I already have a few people in mind I'm going to gift this to for Christmas.  Hope you enjoy! It can be purchased HERE.

Monday, August 4, 2014

The Angel Portrait Project: Comfort to Those Who Mourn

This is a project I have been really excited about.  I'm really happy to finally get to share it with you all.  I have been so grateful and happy with the success my little illustration business has had.  I'm super busy and it's really great.  But, I have been really searching for a way to give back and show my love for those around me within my crazy schedule.  Visiting hospitals and soup kitchens would be wonderful, but it's really difficult to do with a toddler and everything else.   SO, I had a little bit of inspiration and decided I could still find a way to serve others and show my love.

The Angel Portrait Project. I have always had a extra soft spot for those families who have experienced the loss of a child.  This project is my way to give comfort, support and love to those who mourn. My hope is that these portraits will be cherished for years to come by these families and let them know they are thought of and loved.   I have donated paintings in the past of children who have passed to be used in their funerals and it meant so much to them that it made me want to help out even more. I have heard from friends that have lost a child that their biggest fear is that their child will be forgotten.  These portraits will help each of these little angels be remembered forever in a unique and special way.

I will be giving custom portrait paintings for free to families who have lost a child in the past 3 years between the ages of 1-10.  I will be starting with 30 portraits and see what happens.  Each portrait will be in an illustrative style and include a special item, place, or activity that was precious to that child or their families. 

But I need your help guys.  I need to spread the word to find these families who could use a little extra love.  I'm hoping you can share this however you can so it can reach the right people.  Share this image with someone you think might appreciate this and have them email me with "The Angel Portrait Project in the subject line:

See some examples of how the portraits would look below.

All my love,

Friday, August 1, 2014

Being a Mom and an Artist: Schedules

I have had two major dreams in my life. More like my two purposes in life. One was to be a wife and mother. A full time mother. I knew if I had children I wanted to be there to raise them each day. This isn't the only successful way to parent of course but I felt strongly about it. The other dream was to be an artist. To create images that are moving and inspiring to someone. For the first time, I feel as if I am finally fulfill both of my dreams. Motherhood is my priority so I have had to make my art career fit in. I'm sure my path is different then it would have if I chose not to have a family but, I'm really happy with where the path has taken me. Both of these dreams take a huge amount of energy, education and most of all--TIME. I get asked often what my schedule is or HOW I get everything done.
First off, I don't get everything done. My yard is not immaculate. I don't have a perfect manicure all the time (or ever). But, this is the schedule I have found that works for me so I can succeed at the two most important things in my life. I hope this can give anyone else who dreams of being a mom and have a passion for something else an idea of how it can work. It takes discipline and doing lots of things even when I'm tired, but it makes me happy and fulfilled to accomplish a day like the following. It doesn't happen everyday-- but probably 75 percent of the time. I also have a babysitter come 2-3 times a week for two hours at 10:00 am so I can get an extra couple hours of work in. This helps!

  • 6:30 -- Wake with baby, breakfast along with scripture study 
  • 7:00 -- Clean up, 1 hour of house chores while LouLou wonders around and plays-- ie clean kitchen if it didn't happen the night before, laundry, vacuum, etc.
  • 8:00 -- Walking/exercising with LouLou and dogs 
  • 9:00 -- Reading books, doing flashcards, listening to classical music with LouLou 
  • 10:00 -- Shower, Dress, hair/ make up. I usually do this while LouLou is watching an episode of "Baby Signing Time" (the BEST videos for babies and toddlers-- she has learned SO many signs, lots of language building.) 
  • 11:00 -- Lunch 
  • 12:00 -- LouLou Naps, I paint as hard and fast as I can.
  • 3:00 -- LouLou wakes, I play/watch her. If the weather is good we go to the park or the pool.
  • 5:00 -- Make dinner 
  • 6:00 -- Husband comes home, have dinner and we all hang out. 
  • 7:00 -- Matt puts LouLou to bed while I clean up dinner 7:30 -- I start painting. I will usually do some emailing/networking/ blogging at this time while I'm hanging out with Matt but I do get the majority of my art done at night. 
  • 11:00 -- Bed, unless it's a project with a deadline or I'm on a role then I might stay up till 1:00, but then the next day starts later and I'm more tired so I try not to do that often. 
And the best part about being a mother and a creative?  Both endeavors inspire the other.  My creativity inspires me to be a better mother and my baby inspires my art work. 

What schedules work for you? I would love to hear any thoughts or ideas!  Happy creating and mothering.


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

New Art Series: "Let's"

It's a new art series!  I hope you love it as much as I do.  I think it's my favorite.  This "Let's" series was inspired by the woods out my back door and all the woodland creatures I see each day.  I imagined a series where children and these creatures were interacting in inspiring and sweet ways.  Sizes available of Giclee prints are are 5x7, 8x10, and 11x14.  Check out my shop to purchase the series!  Available without text as well.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Double Trouble

It's been a crazy couple of weeks. A new puppy makes everything cuter-- but much more hectic. Also, let's not forget the puppy potty training. It's can be -- well, let's say it definetly is-- extremely frustrating. 

Add to that my crazy desire to potty train my 19 month old? The Murdock house is a potty training mess. 

I vowed long ago to never make a single post anywhere about potty training when I became a mom. But, this is off the charts. 

A normal mom would happen upon a puddle of pee and know right what to do.  I have to figure out which species of oee it is before I can take and disciplinary action. 

A normal mom could say "go potty" and not accidentally set the puppy off on the dining room carpet. 

A normal mom would care if their child went pee in the backyard. I count the backyard as fair game for potty training at this point. I mean, my daughter has been hearing me tell the puppy to go potty outside for 2 weeks so it only seems fair.

My day today consisted of holding Beatrice, the puppy in my lap (so she wouldn't get away and go potty on the carpet) while sitting on the floor next to my daughter who was sitting on her little potty. We read about 30 books. 

My poor husband watched everyone while I slept in on Saturday morning. The first thing he said when I came down "Hello beautiful, I have cleaned up 5 pee spots and I'm not sure whose they were". What a trooper. 

Anyway, after making a few adjustments in both the puppy and the child training routines, things are progressing. I just don't have a lot of spare time to blog.

This photo shows LouLou going commando in the backyard with the dogs following her. I'm probably begging the puppy to go potty at this moment. My life right now. 


Thursday, May 8, 2014

A Dog and a Derby

A new puppy! Meet Beatrice, the newest member of the Murdock family! Bea is the sweetest most laid back puppy I have ever seen and I'm dying over the cuteness.  I have been searching for a fur sister to Winifred and this girl showed up unexpectedly. Her daddy is a champion and has almost all champions in his lines and her mama has lots of great champions as well. She has a long pedigree of healthy and beautiful dogs.  We are so excited about her! 

I have been working like crazy on art commissions and sales, and with a new puppy and a 19 month old daughter you can imagine how hectic it gets. Here are some pics of what's been going on! 

Oh we also went to the Kentucky Derby. Um, you guys. So fun. Amazing weather, fabulous fashion, great company and I picked the Derby winner! 

This face! 

Lots of work in the studio. 

First meeting!! Happy happy happy! 

We do like to play around here. This is us Driving to the Kentucky Derby! 

At the derby! 

The hat! This was small in comparison to what was there. 

Matt takes this betting thing very seriously ;) 

A shot of the paddock where they walk the horses. It's packed! But you can see some fancy hats. 

Hope you all have a great weekend.