Travel #TBT // Unicoi State Park

Unicoi State Park is a luscious green WONDERLAND. With creek beds at all levels of the mountain surrounded with picnic tables and banks to scuttle down, it was convenient and beautiful. There are several hiking trails, all at varying levels of difficulty. One of the easiest trails, paved and only a half mile up, leads you straight to Anna Ruby Falls. It’s a double waterfall, rare and spectacular, with two spacious viewing platforms. We read it was dog friendly, so we took our two mutts along for the outdoor adventure. However, neither Maggie nor Gizmo are especially fond of physical labor or the outdoors. At least not for long durations. We had to carry them back down.
On another day we had a picnic by one of the creek beds. With fresh veggies from Jaemor farms, our sandwiches were next level delicious and the dogs were glad to stay back at the cabin with air conditioning and cushioned surfaces. We waded through the creek and enjoyed the fresh, chilly stream. Down the creek we could…

Outfit #78: pumpkin seed

You ever feel like God planted a big ole pumpkin seed inside you? Like a GMO from Jesus? That pumpkin seed is growing and growing, bigger than any county fair has ever seen, maybe even any state fair, shoot, it might compete nationally.

I remember telling one of my high school teachers that I felt like there was something big inside me, like I was going to do something that even I couldn’t predict and he knew exactly what I was talking about. It’s the weirdest kind of motivation because it’s vague and directionless. But it also means no matter how insecure I get, I sense this all part of a greater cause I can’t yet foresee.

Sticking to your gut (or nurturing your pumpkin seed???) takes courage and faith in yourself. Also a good heap of hard work. The worst part is I actually believe in myself. I believe I can do something even I couldn’t imagine. Which is pretty impressive considering I can bring myself to tears imagining myself giving inspirational monologues in dramatic, improb…

Travel #TBT // Downtown Helen, GA

Downtown Helen prides itself on recreating the look of Bavarian Germany and claims to be the third most visited city in Georgia. Their commitment to maintaining the Alpine Germany aesthetic is impressive, especially if you ever wanted to visit a German Wendy’s or Huddle House.

The most entertaining feature of Downtown Helen is watching the tubers shuffle and slip down the Chattahoochee. The river was low when we visited making the entertainment even more wildly delightful. Except when we saw a person’s tube pop. Tragic! Then there were other anomalies – tubers would park on the grass banks in front of restaurants to stop for a smoke or abandon their floats completely to grab a drink, perhaps? Or the frightful journey of a person ejected from their float and then left to waddle after it, slipping on river rocks the whole way. We watched one woman struggle for a good 45 minutes until a courageous bystander assisted her. (As soon as she mounted her float she was stuck between rocks.)

A …

DIY // Glow ghost glow

GHOST SUPPLIES // Cheesecloth DIY Paper mache paste or liquid starch Balloon Water bottle Parchment paper
DECORATIONS // Scissors Adhesive felt Paint Glitter Glue Battery powered fairy lights

HOW TO //  Blow up a balloon and secure it to a water bottle or a stack of cans until it is the desired height. This will be the supporting structure of your ghost. The balloon will provide the shape of the head. I taped my balloon to a water bottle and then set the bottle on an upside down bowl to reach the height I wanted (about a foot and a half). Pro tip: I lined my countertop with parchment paper for easy cleanup.

Now that you have your structure, you need either liquid starch or paper mache paste. I didn’t have any liquid starch (spray starch won’t get the job done), so I made my own paper mache adhesive. *Skip this next part if you plan to use liquid starch.*

To make the paper mache paste, boil a cup of water. In a separate bowl combine a cup of flour with two cups of cold water. Mix. Once…

Personal essay // Not a master of what, but who

I made this really unfortunate looking sock monkey. It is so ugly that it’s come round to being cute again. He somehow became a mascot of exploring creativity without inhibition. Accepting that the results could be Frankenstein’s monster. Hideous, but at least it’s walking around and talking.

But good grief that’s easy to forget.

Art has not been my field. It’s always been an interest. I would obsessively watch any show or documentary about art, frozen until it finished. It expanded into shows about culinary arts and architecture. I would make weird little figurines and mini sculptures out poured wax or clay.

Now I’m an artist in residence with a degree in writing.

One foot in the art world and another in writing. You could say that writing is an art and therefore both of my feet are in the same world, but I would say you are super wrong. Writers and artists speak two different languages and I only got the one script. My improv skills seem to be improving though.

This is all to say t…

Watch // Four films that will haunt you

Horror films and psychological thrillers are my roller coasters. For a long time, even a puff of creepy on the wind would keep me awake at night. A few years ago I decided to combat my sensitivity by consuming scary stories and pathetic horror films to build up my immunity to film-induced fear. 
Now that I have a critical and jaded exterior to protect me from being too unsettled, watching scary movies is fun – sometimes. There are a few films, whether they are identified as scary or not, that have imprinted their scenes on the back of my eyes. At night they replay, reminding me that no amount of self-constructed security is impenetrable from pure, sincere fear. 
The Shining
A family heads to an isolated hotel for the winter where an evil and spiritual presence influences the father into violence, while his psychic son sees horrific forebodings from the past and of the future. (IMDB)
The Shining gets an obvious mention here. Kubrick’s ability to build tension with tight framed, lingeri…

DIY // Alien T Shirt

Supplies // black cotton tee, bleach, sponge brush, contact paper, scissors or xacto knife

How to // I made a stencil out of contact paper by drawing the alien head on the back of the paper. Most contact paper will have graph lines on the back, this makes it easier to draw an even design. Next, I cut it out using a xacto knife.

Before bleaching, I put the shirt over a plastic bin lid to prevent bleeding and then I carefully placed my alien head on the shirt. I did have to readjust once to make it centered, but this did not weaken the adhesive on the paper.

I took everything outside and carefully dabbed bleach with a sponge brush around the edges of my design first to ensure the lines of the design would be defined. **Please be careful using bleach. Wear gloves. Use it in a well-ventilated space if you choose to stay inside**

In the sunlight, the bleach will start removing color almost immediately. I kept dabbing and splattering the bleach across the shirt until I was satisfied with h…