Sunday, 31 July 2011

Featured on Adore Home & Paper Runway

I apologize for being MIA on the blog scene recently, I have been very busy and hope to show you some of what I have been up to soon.

However, this morning I was very excited to discover Urban Road featured in not one but TWO of the latest issues my favorite online mags...

I am super first official press!!! Yay.

And a special thanks to Janette for her lovely mention of her blog this morning.

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Thank you cherry pick me

I have been sooo busy and blogging has had to take a back seat, but just popping in to say a big THANK YOU to Cherry Pick Me for an extremely successful on line deal featuring Urban Road's canvas art prints on Monday.

Thanks Sarah & Carla, you were both so helpful.

Suzie xx

Friday, 22 July 2011

Your photo to canvas

Do I have a deal for you! I have the most wonderful prints on canvas supplier, I can't tell you who it is (because then I would have to kill you :) but I can pass on her specials to you my lovely blog followers. So if you've been thinking of getting some of your favorite pics or even your artwork printed on canvas here is a fantastic opportunity.

The Deal:

Your photo or artwork or child's artwork printed on canvas

20x26cm gallery wrapped 100% cotton canvas print 

$20 each or $45 for 3

75% off retail prices

Only available to Australian customers, only 20 canvas prints available for purchase.

This is the perfect size for iPhone 4 camera apps like Shake it photo, Hipstamatic, Photo booth etc.

The details:
Taken with Photo Booth

1. All you have to do is be or become a follower of this blog or like us on Facebook to take advantage of this offer.

2. Go to Urban Road and purchase either a single canvas for $20 or a set of 3 for $45 and pay via PayPal.

4. Email your images to the email address in your order confirmation.  You MUST email your images by 1st August 2011! Delivery will take approximately 3 weeks from this date.

3. If you are in Sydney you can pick up from Killara or Australia wide postage is $8 for one canvas and $3 for each additional canvas.

Please read the Terms and Conditions at the very bottom of the page in my online shop Urban Road.

Offer ends Monday 1st August AEST unless sold out prior. Photos MUST be emailed to me by Monday 1st August also.

If you have any questions please comment on this post or email me via the Urban Road website. Please feel free for forward this offer to family & friends.

Suzie xx

Sunday, 17 July 2011

One year ago India

A year ago today I just returned home from 12 days in India. My hubby stayed home with the kids (what a sweetheart) and I joined a group of 7 people from our church (most of whom I did not know very well) and embarked on an adventure to rural southern India, a village in the state of Tamil Nadu.

I have been reflecting on my trip a lot this week, so thought I would share it with you.

Why India you might ask...well, my church is a part of an "adopt a village" program through an organisation called India Gospel League (IGL), this means that we individually sponsor children from this village and we (our church) provide funds to aid the village through our weekly offerings. I will explain some of the things this helps the village with below.

So having a connection with India, being invited and the "OK" from my hubby was all I needed to jump at the opportunity. It is something I have always wanted to do.

Before I start I want you to know that this was the most amazing, humbling and life changing experience I have ever had the privilege of being a part of. Putting it into words in this short summary will only give you a glimmer of this. Not to mention the fact that I may be creative, but literary creativity is not my gift (I'm a picture person). So, I am going to show you a few photo's of the time spent in the adopted village and attempt to share some of what I experienced, whilst keeping it short.

This is the main street of the village "Sirumalai" there is not too much more to it than what you can see here, the school is behind me and you are looking at buildings that house trades people and a couple of shops. They have electricity as you can see but no running water into their homes, they collect water from the tank in the village.

This group of women are referred to as the "untouchables" they are not allowed to assimilate with the rest of the village (nor are their husbands and children) because they are the lowest of the Hindu cast system. They have their own separate quarters on the outskirts of the village. These women are a part of a "women's transformation group" that IGL have set up, they receive micro loans that allow them to buy supplies like fertilizer, pesticides or seeds for farming their 1/2 acre plot of land that they do not own, these crops are their main source of income.

IGL set up a sewing school and workshop for women in the village, these women were taught how to sew and are now working as seamstresses, they make uniforms, dresses and kids cloths. They receive the equivalent of approx AUD 10c per garment. These women now have the opportunity to work and contribute financially to the family.

IGL provided a local school for the village so that the children don't have to travel 1 hour by bus down the mountain to town. The kids performed a dance and sang for us, it was the sweetest thing ever. We then were given the opportunity to hand each child a new school uniform and back pack, seeing the joy in their faces when receiving such simple gifts was heart warming.

This is the classroom for the kindy kids ages 3-4, they were sooo cute, they sang the ABC's in English for us. The room is not much bigger than what you can see in the photo.

This is a ceremony to present micro loans to multiple men & women's transformation groups, the loans were AUD40 for the group at 2% interest. Each group presented their earnings and their savings. Prior to receiving the micro loans they didn't have bank accounts or understand the concept of saving and most weren't working at all. IGL provide support and advice to help them run their small businesses and teach them how to save money.

 IGL organise after school tutoring for the kids in the surrounding villages, we visited a few of these and gave the kids new backpacks. 

It was such a privilege to be able to visit Sirumalai and see how the community is being transformed, meeting the kids and witnessing joy and thankfulness of the parents because of the work IGL are doing there was so special. It also made me realise how a small amount of our Aussie dollars can make a HUGE difference in a country like India.

God is doing amazing things over there and it was wonderful to feel like I am a part of something (a very little part) that makes such a huge difference to so many people. However, I think they contributed much more to my life than I theirs.

This experience changed my heart, and whilst I love my art, I constantly find myself questioning what I'm doing to make a difference in the world and I struggle with promoting materialism. This is one reason it took me so long to start a blog and why I don't post a lot of "stuff" on my blog. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate beautiful things and I love decorating my house just like the rest of you. I just struggle with focusing so much of my time posting about it and promoting it.

So this is where I am at...and can I say what a joy it was for me to write this post and look back through the photos, it brought tears to my eyes.

I will close by saying, if you ever get the opportunity to do something like this DON'T HESITATE. And supporting organizations like IGL is one wonderful way you can contribute to addressing poverty in our world.

Thanks for reading this post, it means a lot to me.

Suzie xx

Monday, 11 July 2011

Things I'm loving...

I am loving the sunshine...

 I am loving family time, the few weeks a year we get to spend together away from the hustle and bustle of every day life are an absolute treasure. Doing it in the sunshine is bonus :)

I am loving watching the kids be kids, no routine, no structured activities, discovering new things and seeing the world through their eyes. It brings back fond memories of family holidays when I was a kid. I feel blessed and extremely grateful to have these experiences with my family.

Also, loving my hipstamatic and shake it photo iphone apps!

What are you loving at the moment????

Linking up with Paisley Jade's things I'm loving....

Sunday, 10 July 2011

A home for my butterflies

A couple of weeks ago I was THRILLED to be the winner of a beautiful arrangement of framed blue paper butterflies from the down that little lane giveaway.

I had to fight with my 7 year old daughter over them, as she was adamant they were going to be hung on the art wall in her room. But...while she was out on a play date this week I hung them up in a corner of my kitchen.

They catch my eye all the time and I stop and admire the gorgeous papers the butterflies are made of. Thanks Tessa & Louise for donating such a beautiful work of art for a giveaway.

Have a great Monday.

Suzie xx

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Purchased for parenthood

I have very exciting news...yesterday one of my artworks was purchased for the set of NBC's Parenthood season 3.

The funny thing is I became addicted to this show on a flight home from India this time last year...I think I watched 5 episodes on the flight and it is the only show I make time to watch. You know because of late nights on the computer and all that jazz.

Plus, Parenthood the movie is one of my all time favorites! I think that's why I liked the show so much.

 Woo excited am I!!!

The art work purchased was Ava Brown, named after my daughter, very appropriate don't you think?

So if your planning to watch season 3 of Parenthood keep your eye out for Ava Brown.

Have a great day lovelies

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Quote of the day...

Blogging during school holidays is going to be difficult...I may get a few in but they will be short and sweet :)

This isn't really a quote, technically it is a "recipe for life" or wisdom saying...isn't it great? I love it, and when I saw it I immediately thought...I want that in my kitchen, it's such a fun daily reminder that we get to choose what we put into each day.

So I put together a bus scroll version of the saying...just need to get it printed & hang it in the kitchen now!
Author unknown

This print will soon be available in my Urban Road shop & etsy shop have a great day.