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Saturday, November 29, 2008
Food Crack
I have certain foods that I do not allow inside my house because I am addicted, and addictions are never pretty. The following is my list of food is crack which is banned from my home. Ironically, most of them were smuggled brought in as gifts this past week/weekend:

Sourdough bread
Salt and Vinegar Potato chips
No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal cookies
Goldfish Crackers
Krispy Creme Donuts

And I must say that I have been many years clean on the No-Bake cookies, Cheezits, Goldfish crackers, and any kind of donut. Seriously. I have avoided them for YEARS. However, the last month or so has reunited me with my demons and I'm afraid I fell off the wagon.

The treadmill is making up for it. Vegas trip is coming up and I don't want to waddle into the airport, or have fear that my pants might explode at any given moment. Crap. Damn you carbs!!!

So what is your food crack? And no, don't email me. Put it here in comment form for the world to see. The first step is admitting that you have a problem. Let the world know that you are not invincible to food crack! Stand up for yourself!! Be heard. We say NO to CRACK. Crack is whack!!
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Yet more cool things . . .
Again. Clients hire me to do a service, I create an image to their specifications, and then they go and take my illustrations and artwork one step further. It's simply amazing. I'm honored and amazed.

Check out what Melonie of Riding Couture has done. Know any dressage riders? Hit the ring with one of Melonie's creations and you don't have to SAY it out loud, but trust me, you saddle up to one of your frienemies, and you may as well shout out, "What up, BEEYATCH. Do my horse and myself not sparkle and shine? Oh, well. We don't MEAN to. It's just our natural glow of good taste and class."

You may recognize the Stiletto boot . . . only in wearable BLING:

The image created in her and her horse's favor (Trust me, she and her horse are even prettier in person although she's so humble she would adamantly oppose, I'm sure!):

So, if you're a dressage equestrian and you NEED to keep up on all that is FAB, check out Riding Couture. PS. I don't even ride dressage (but I have the tack, natch!) I would be SO VERY willing to lie, cheat, steal, and name my first born after the brow bands Riding Couture has on sale.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Russ and Martin
Sometimes some people do some fascinating things with my artwork. I am honored to be a part of the gift baskets created by Russ and Martin. Take a peak at their great website based in the San Fran area! FAB.

Saturday, November 15, 2008
Letter to the Editor
Dear Gayle Butler,

I would like to preface this letter/email by stating that I had a BH&G magazine subscription for years. I am an obsessed magazine subscriber and can't get enough magazines packed into my mail box. Two years ago, your mag and I had a wonderful relationship. Loved it! So so imaginative, colorful, and useful. Helpful little tidbits that I saved for future reference. Although not everything was my taste, I could still find at least one imaginative idea to pick from. Ya'll mixed it up. There were glue guns involved, ribbon, fabric, thrift store finds, antiques, and the likes. So fast forward a year or two after NOT having a subscription, I missed my BH&G and signed up for more.

I should also mention that my PR rep suggested sitting down with y'all at Meredith Group at some point and time to discuss my art for your magazines. I'm sure she would love to remain anonymous at this point, but being the kinda gal I am, I take my magazine subscriptions seriously. I am a city girl that happens to preside in the country. I look forward to things in my mailbox. I simply MUST say something. If not for my sake, then yours. I have my issues, and apparently you have your November issue.

Ms. Butler, my Mama never told me if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say it. Good thing those words never came out of her mouth.

So what exactly happened to your magazine, namely your November 2008 issue? If I wanted a health magazine to learn about diabetes, you think I'm going to pick up an issue of BH&G? No, that's what Prevention magazine is for (I think.) If I wanted to do sit ups on a body ball, think I'm going to wait for page 268 to learn how to do that? If I wanted 30+ fabulous recipes do you think I'd buy a copy of BH&G? No, I'd watch the Food Network or buy Woman's Day or something. I'm even told that there's this Rachel-somebody-famous with her own magazine out now. My idea of cooking is opening up a box of CheezIts and saving the Box Top for Education serial code. Or, if I really need to turn on the oven for my family's nutritional sake, I would choose a 10 minute recipe off a Campbell's Soup label. Hey, I'm not knocking the occasional kick-ass recipe, but when I think Better Homes and Gardens, I'm thinking about my Home. And my Garden. Not my food. Not my health. Not my exercise regiment.

However, you can be rest assured that if I were colorblind and could only see monochromatic color schemes, you sure as heck bet that I would buy November's issue of BH&G. But there lies the problem. I happen to have a special gift that allows me to see more than cremes and neutral colors, as I'm sure most of your readers do as well. And your creative idea of art is to cut up a map and put it in a frame? Whoa. Look out MOMA. It takes a special talent to work a blade knife and a ruler.

Page 174 and 175 photos of ornamental corn. TWO FULL PAGES of ornamental corn. I can see that at my local Piggly Wiggly. Page 176. Granted that the carnival glass vase is to die for, but I can find paintings JUST like this painted by some lovely retiree who created their first watercolor masterpiece at any given thrift store. And page 177 of an unpainted basket with apples and decorative pumpkins? Did you actually pay a photographer to take these shots? Wow. Come on over to my house and I've got some impressive shots for you. I'll charge you like 50 bucks or something of my fruit basket with tiny white pumpkins. I'll even throw in a tomato and some bananas (Make it $60 if they're ripe). If it's unpainted weaved baskets you're after, have I got the laundry basket for you! (Complete with laundry, natch.) Seriously. Call me. We'll make a deal.

Worst of all, if you were to put me in ANY of the rooms showcased this month's magazine, and I would walk back out wondering how these people got such huge ramrods shoved up their tight little butts. A little color and life never hurt anybody and might just stir the pot and jazz people up a bit. It would literally brighten their day. I can't say that I would recommend November's issue of BH&G to any of my manic-depressive friends because surely it would do them in. It's that boring. It's THAT uptight. But way to go on all the advertisements!! Couldn't get enough of those suckers! Oh, and for the record, I didn't miss the crazee splashes of pale ocean blue you had as an accent color throughout. WOW. Brace yourself for the wildness there!! It's almost like I'm having color-induced seizures.

Here's my suggestion for you to keep in mind for your next issue:

We are not all little ole women that held on to those "retro" pieces of 1970's furniture. Some of us grew up in the 70's and if we have to see one more retro piece, we'll actually throw up a little bit in our mouth. Oh, and we actually like to SIT on furniture.

Neutral colors and a splash of pale ocean blue are NOT the only colors in style. Does Avocado Green and Mustard Yellow ring a bell? DING. DING. DING. (That's the bell going off in my retro mind. You can still see said color schemes in low-income rental homes across the US quite similar to the photo ops you have this month, only TONED down. How is it even possible that ya'll toned down the 70's and we don't even get to benefit from the illicit drugs, indoor cigarette smoking, cocktail Tupperware parties at 11 am, and free sex? But hey, thanks for saving us from those nasty STD's. I'm sure we'll make up for it in Lithium.)

There are many many other styles of homes other than those possessing white walls and stained wood. For example you have your farm houses, chateaus, cabins, urban lofts, bungalows, and artistic colorful homes. Back in the day, say 2 years ago, I seem to remember stripes, patterns, wallpaper, and even BOWS in previous issues. What girl couldn't use the occasional bow? It's not like I'm asking you to bring back sky-blue wall borders with white silhouettes of geese wearing bonnets. And if you're going to do the retro thing, why not go all out and feature crocheted dolls holding toilet paper under their skirts, or hanging macreme' owl plant holders?

Things I would not spend $3.49 on in November: BH&G's November issue. Seriously. Flip through November's issue and the most colorful thing I saw was on page 30 where four different swatches of plum are showcased. In case you hadn't noticed, we can find these same exact paint swatches at any given hardware store for FREE. But thanks for pointing out that they actually exist, because if I were to go on this month's version of BH&G I would have plum forgot.


*Edited to add Gayle's response*

Dear Shano—

I love when people tell me exactly what they think, even if we don’t agree. So thank you, sincerely, for taking the time to let me know that the November issue did not please you and why. Seeing your studio name, I visited your Web site—vibrant and fun—and I can see why the subdued colors in November didn’t do it for you.

I hope you’ll be happier with issues to come, especially the upcoming February color issue.

Again, I hope we’ll please you more over time. Thanks for feedback.

Gayle Goodson Butler
Editor in Chief

Huh. Doesn't even sound like she wants to stab me.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Pop Rocks and Coke
Crap. Why didn't ya'll tell me that the link isn't working? Um. And hasn't been for QUITE some time? I have been so immersed in adding a shopping cart, and so determined to do it myself that my working braincells have been sucked into a vortex of codes; HTLM, CSS, JAVA, PHP, SQRL, and all kinds of other computer mumbo-jumbo that I would rather forget about. And truthfully, already have. I would just assume that the few and precious remaining brain cells function for the finer things in life such as breathing. And laundry. Mustn't forget laundry.

So, needless to say, website is STILL at a standstill. Thankfully, my head has been filled with the likes of orders, paintings, and skull-crushing ideas that will likely land me in the same muddy pond as a shopping cart that lets you choose various methods of payment AND lets you get to see what is your shopping cart. I have so many ideas in my head that I equate them to the simile of Pop Rocks- Powerful, shocking, colorful, but very VERY short-lived. And you wouldn't want to mix them with Diet Coke. Oh no. You could totally die. And we all know that caffeine and artificial sugars are at the top of the pyramid food chart in my world.

Instead of a live-in nanny or housekeeper, I would prefer a live-in computer geek. And Hellya, it would be UBER cool if said live-in geek not only did flippin' shopping carts, but knew their way around vacuums and other powerful cleaning tools like the the dishwasher.

Okay, it is late and I'm off to watch Housewives of Atlanta (on TIVO, natch) to be reminded of how truly inferior I really am as a human being.
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
Designer of the Week
Check it out. I'm Designer of the Week at