January 27, 2010

Tattoo on my mind

Uh-oh, visiting that piercing/tattoo shop reactivated the wish for another tattoo. Browsing the web & dreaming what it should look like, what spot on my body begs for ink the hardest...
I love how one symbol keeps popping up in my quest for a meaningful and strong way to express the changes I'm going through.

A Buddhist symbol, especially the Ohm sign, would be a good one. I'm not a Buddhist (yet), but that way of life matches with my values and parts of that culture (I'd rather see it as a culture instead of a religion) are embedded in my life already. I love how this one is done.

Another symbol with meaning to me is the Egyptian Ankh, which stands for (eternal) life. It often comes back in my drawings and in the jewelry I buy, I'm attracted to it. It's great that it has similarities with the female sign as well and it brings back fond memories of our trip to Egypt many years ago. It was just magical to walk around in that surreal landscape, the atmosphere in the Valley of the Kings almost sacred. Haha, well, not the atmosphere in Cairo though, that was just hectic ;)

But the one symbol that keeps crossing my path is the Hopi labyrinth. It represents the path of life. When you're finding your way through the mazes, you might get stuck and search for other ways. One moment you're close to the centre, while the other you're closer to the outlines, which could represent the world outside. When I saw these labyrinths in the past (when I first heard about the Hopi), my thought was: getting out of that maze, that's what life and surviving is about. But when I look at it now, I don't feel a need to escape, I want to be inside that labyrinth, walking that path. And we'll just see where it leads to and what will cross my path.
But there's another twist: Hopi symbols always remind me of my father. We share wonderful memories of a celebration we organised together, many years ago. It made a lasting impression on me and I know my dad cherishes those memories as well. It was a string that attached us during his stay in the hospitals, where his own story evolved into a book about a tiny King. And as a symbol of trust, he gave Albert the last remain of that celebration during our wedding ceremony.

A lot comes together in this Hopi symbol and I'm thinking of having it tattoed on my right arm, the arm that wears the scars. It would be perfect to have it on the inside of my wrist, covering the place that tempted me so often to cut deeper.
I'm not sure if I'm ready to leave the self harm behind. Probably not, not yet. But I am ready to close the chapter of suicide.

The last couple of weeks I felt I was going down the drain again and I was scared to lose my grip on life again.
I haven't lost it. I'm still here & going strong. I'm still alive and I'll continue my travel. Hopefully with a small symbol on my skin soon, to remind me.

January 26, 2010

Cats in progress

April is coming closer and so is the BookCrossing Convention date! Over 200 tickets have been sold and the team of organising BookCrossers is working hard to make it a wonderful happening. It's gonna be a blast!
They asked me to design (or adjust a design) for a convention themed bookplate and of course I didn't say no, I love making those!
It took a while before anything decent would come out of the drawing pens, hadn't been drawing in a while and having a little injury on your writing/drawing hand doesn't help much either. Haha, figuring out how to draw tulips was the most challenging part ;) (not to mention windmills!)
The design is not completely ready, I'm not sure if I'll stick with the cheese background and the colours and I want the convention team to 'approve' it before I put it online. So you'll have to do it with a sneak peak for now:)

For more info on the convention, click here!

January 11, 2010

New Cat in Town

Today it was Munchkin's job to guard the garden.

Suddenly he returns to the house.
"Guys, guys, you'll never believe what I've just seen!"

"I thought I saw Molotov..."

"but when I watched closer..."

"...and closer..."

"...it was a whole different cat!
I'm still quite confused."

Brave old Puschkin cane out to see what all the fuzz
was about, but the snow was cold on his paws.

Very cold!

"Munchkin, you sissy, it's just a kitten, don't make such
a big deal of it!"

"and it's way too cold, I'm outta here!"

Molotov: "Did someone say my name? A kitten?
Where, where?!"

The End.

January 7, 2010

Sweet Old Famous Cat

As some of you might know, I collect books & stuff with (one of) the names of our cats on the cover. Most of those items are books (a perfect combi of my love for both cats & books!), written by the Russian writer Alexander Puschkin. Thanks to fellow BookCrossers, I've got a whole range of Puschkin books in different languages now and I'm very proud of that collection.
And then sometimes you bump into gems like these:

Wow, a must-have for me!
I got in touch with the writer (she self published this book and it's not available in bookstores) and, lucky me, she still had 6 copies of this book! Whoohoo!
It's a children's book about a stray cat and it involves themes like friendship, trust and care.
The writer was surprised to hear from someone far away (she lives in Canada) and she's sending me an authographed copy. How great is that?

Here you can read more about this book and you wanna click here for her other animal themed children's book.

In the mean time, sweet old Puschkin is growing older and older, but we believe he's still happy. He sleeps all day, but his ears & appetite are still very good: whenever one of us goes into the kitchen, he wakes up and asks for (I should say demands) food. He seems very satisfied with the large basket we got from my sister, he's been using it about 22/23 hours a day since we put it in the living room.

(yippeeee, new graphic software!)

But Puschkin is not the only famous cat in the house: Muchkin has got his own card game! (Also a present of my sis)

January 2, 2010

Don't be such a baby, get pierced!

My gosh, how horrible is this?!
Bumped into this product when I was browsing for info on different piercing methods, was curious what people had to say about that push through method (much like a piercing gun, but it uses manual force instead of shooting). From what I've read so far, I'm not a fan of this method for anything other than earlobes.

Anyway, what I also found was this:
"your child has to be at least 6 weeks before having their ears pierced"
Excuse me??? I always feel so bad when I see todlers or even babies with earstuds. There should definitely be a law that forbids things like that!

I'm finally done thinking about what piercing to get and where. I adore lip piercings, would love to have one, but my teeth are damaged already and I don't want more damage there, so I've dropped that plan.
My 2nd choice was an eyebrow piercing, but now that I'm wearing glasses again I think there's enough bling going on in my face. It's gonna be a helix: a piercing through the upper part of the ear. Not world shocking, but I like how they look:

Will go for a smaller ring and maybe placed a bit higher.
Another step in the right direction :) I hope to be able to have the tattoo on my lower arm adjusted/ transformed into something nicer someday and I think my upper right arm and one of my ankles could use some decoration as well, but that's for later, when we are rich ;)