Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Easter Bubs...

... 3 Baby Bunnies were left all alone,
Just before Easter in a far away home...
3 Baby Bunnies were looking for moms,
to love them and hold them and call them,
their own...

Tiny sample...

Monday, March 28, 2011

Still sick and...

Ugh, today marks day 3 of being sick. We had a long weekend that started on the 24th March. They didn't have school because on the 25th is our National Holiday... Since the night of the 24th the boys were sick with a stomach bug (Cody) and his usual cough/snot/fever (John). Also George came down with the stomach bug and just laid in bed for 42 hrs leaving me alone with two sick kids, closed pharmacies and a ton of work to do... and then they all started getting better over the weekend...except now I GOT IT :(

I seriously can't move my feet.. I have a fever, full on stomach issues (you know, ICK!) and I can't take anything because, HELLO, stomach issues? Anything down comes back up...

It's time to pick up the (now well and chirpy) boys from school... I sent George. When I am standing up the world is spinning. Thank God for G's laptop, I am typing this from bed and the computer hurts my eyes :(
Sorry if you don't hear much from me today girls, but I am REALLY feeling yucky... I will try to check mail later tonight again in case something serious comes up but until then... I think I will just sleep... for 42 hrs!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Promise..

I wanted to blog about this yesterday, but with the whole family sick I didn't have the time... now I am feeling feverish since I posted this morning but I took a couple of those cold/flu pills so I hope to feel better in an hour.

Yesterday was a very important day... Since 2005, I've had 6 anniversaries come and go but this year I have been thinking about it more and more, wanting to do something special to commemorate it.
It is probably because a) I've had a rough year and b) I really, really, really want another baby... which isn't something I see in the forseable future for me.

Anyway, yesterday, six years ago I won a battle... a battle I had been waging for 3 years... the battle with infertility.
6 years ago yesterday, I found out I was pregnant... and what was going to be, a life altering experience started.. not just life alterning but personality altering as well...

6 years ago yesterday, I was given a Promise... the Promise of motherhood and 34 weeks later, the Promise was fulfilled... and I wanted to say to all fellows warriors out there, don't lose heart. It is a hard war that wears you down but it CAN be won... hang in there.
I will write more when I feel better!! :)

A sick family...

Literally... Cody and George has a stomach bug, it's been 48 hrs for Cody and still going strong. George didn't even get out of bed at all yesterday...
John has the usual: snot/cough/fever... and I am hanging on. I've got pangs of both, my stomach is a little weak, my throat is sore, my head hurts... yeah, what a fun weekend huh? Nothing like having to clean up after a sleepy child, has had an explosive "incident" at 3am in the toilet...except he missed the bowl... fun huh?
Cody also has a cough so I pray to God he hasn't gotten his brother's bug as well. TWO bugs? Yuck!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Available Babies

Two realistic preemies up for adoption today (3rd one not quite done as I had hoped but soon...)

First we have Elise. 17" long with bent legs, 13" head circumderence, full arms and legs, painted light brown hair and open mouth, weighted with pellets, very cuddly. 35 week, true to life preemie. Wears newborn clothing.
Suitable for hospital display as you can see.
Her adoption fee is $1500 shipped. Please note I only ship EMS to Germany now. PayPal only, unfortunately I can't do layaway at the moment :(

If you are serious aboute Elise, mail me for more pics!

Next we have Grace. I knew she was a "Gracie" the moment I finished her head! She looks like a Gracie :)
16" with bent legs, full legs, 1/2 arms with armature at the elbow for posing, pellet filled, *very* cuddly this one. Her head is 13" around, she is a 33-34 week preemie. Suitable for hospital display
Light brown/sandy blonde hair plus painted underhair, delicate and discreet veining (as a true blonde!), she looks like she is sucking her lower lip, but she is not, she does have a lower lip visible :)
Her adoption fee is $1400 shipped. Please note I only ship EMS to Germany now. PayPal only, no layaway at the moment :(

If you are serious about Gracie, mail me for more pics!



Three lifesize OOAKs coming up for sale TODAY... stay tuned!!!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

There is something...

... really special when, after a hard experience the day before, and despite your best efforts to make him smile all day, your newly toothless 5 year old, smiles broadly and says to you "Mmmmmm, thugar that tathstes like sthwabewwy!!"

Friday, March 11, 2011

The problem with preemies..

.. is that they are fragile. They are fragile while they are trying to survive in the NICU but, and this is something many parents ignore at the time, is they remain fragile even when they leave the NICU behind, possibly for several years. In fact, even if they do survive their time in the NICU, their morbidity rate is very high for the first years of their lives...

While pregnant with the boys all I cared about was delivering them alive... I was schooled that way, I was led to believe that it was "just" a difficult high risk pregnancy and that since I wouldn't be pregnant forever, if we could "just" get to a certain gestational age, things would be fine and we would live happily ever after.

At five years 4 months of age, my preemie is now a "former" preemie, an IUGR survivor and even though for the most part we live happily, it is not an easy road.
Today he is having two teeth pulled due to something related to his prematurity... enamel dysplasia. Five years after he was born, his preemie status is still giving him trouble. He does not like it, is not looking forward to it, and my heart bleeds for him. He is already different looking with his IUGR related undervelopment, his preemie related bad eyesight and glasses and his brain damage related CP gait.. now he will be the only kid in his class with two front teeth (upper) missing :(
Oh how wonderful... it's not the teeth per se, although since we are looking to at least anothe year before his new ones grow in, it's the issues this will cause. Kids are not supposed to be without teeth for too long and he will be :( I don't know how this will affect his speech, he is already in speech therapy ... or his eating, which is already a huge daily struggle...

Wish us luck please... Even grown preemies are different in a way a parent of a full term baby can't understand :( I do not wish preemiehood to anyone.

Monday, March 07, 2011


It was one of those rare moments I got to sculpt from a live newborn a few weeks ago, and not only that, she was a 34 week preemie!!
Thank you Mary M. and the nurses at the NICU.. May I present, Elise, to you?

Sunday, March 06, 2011


No!! not in real life!! :) Gotta huh? I had a dream the other night I was pregnant... it was a weird dream because I felt the baby move Alien style in my belly.. my boys had felt like that at around 24 weeks when they were both trying to turn head down.. we ended up with John horizontal (in the back) and Cody almost "standing up" on the left side of my body, feet down... the "T" bone babies ha ha.

So anyway I had a dream I was having another baby and I was desperately looking for a physician to give me an ultrasound because I had no idea WHEN I had gotten pregnant or...ehm... by who... (blush).

In my years battling infertility, I had very often dreamed about having babies... I know this will sound ultra-weird but I had many prophetic dreams and over the years I have learned to trust my instict and what my dreams were telling me...
Admist my despair for a baby I kept having a specific dream... I had had two babies... one with black hair that was tiny and frail and a chubby cherubical blonde one. They had only given me the blonde one and a few days later when I realized the frail one was also mine, I looked for it and they had left it to die.. so I took it, fed it, cleaned it and nursed it to health.
It wasn't the imagery that was so powerful but the true feelings of joy, despair and anxiety that the dream caused me. I often woke up with a wet pillow...

Lo and behold, I DID have two babies, a big baby and a frail baby, although it was the blonde baby (John) that was the tiny one.. and I didn't get John immediately because he was in the NICU... just like my dream.

I wonder if it was was God's (or the Universe's, if you do not believe in God) way of assuring me that I WILL be a mom... soon... one day.
I often dream about another pregnancy... and lately I have been wondering if it IS in fact meant to be. Things are difficult, yes... I am still torn badly between my desire to have another baby or leave it. Do I have the money, the space and the reserves for one more... especially with two special needs kids already?

Will I regret it 10 years from now if I don't? Will I live out the rest of my life, wishing I had just one more?
Yes... I will.
A baby is forever... everything else is temporary, money, a house, even a bad marriage situation with a husband... temporary. A daughter... my Ellie... I wish...

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Preemies everywhere...

Since the start of the year I have been prolific with sculpting ... not so with photographing and selling though... I am being overrun by preemies...

Do you see boy? Girl? I am also running out of cute names ;)

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Words of Wisdom...

Kind of... I am not really very wise :) Back when I started sculpting realistic babies, in 1997, I had no idea there were others sculpting them too, mainly because the internet was NOT like we know it today... Having an e-mail address was a miracle ;) I was studying in the University of Glasgow and we were "aboard" a network called SuperJanet... I was a Unix user ;)
Fun times...

In 1999 the internet was more similar to what we know today, you could Google things or more precisely, you could "Alta Vista" things because Alta Vista and Lycos were the search engines I used back then and that's when, I think in 2000 or 2001, I saw other artists too. My first were Linda Webb and Eva Helland..and I remember thinking "I SOOO want to be like them... but no chance, I will NEVER be this good".

But here I am 11 years later.. It's very hard for me to gage how "good" I am and it's not a race anyway. I'm happy, people like my work, win-win.
But, I would be lying if I said I wasn't tormented by my own thoughts of not beeing good "enough". Actually, I still am... but you see, my fellow artist, this is a GOOD thing, because the moment you step back and say "Wow I am SO perfect" you are done growing... and when you are done growing, others will grow taller than you, and block out the stars... and personally I am aiming for the stars in a way... I just want to reach a point Madamme Tusseau's would hire me :) Or The Creature Shop... or George Lucas... or I would FINALLY replace that stupid preemie doll used in Grey's Anatomy... IT DOESN'T LOOK REAL, STOP IT!!! I can do better!! :) (ok off my soap box)

So back then you dared not ask questions. "How did you do that?" "What clay do you use" etc. Nobody would talk!! These days things are more relaxed, and you can get info, tutorials... back then I bought Rortrat's Schrott's book and I was impressed but... it really EXPLAIN things.. it just showed how she sculpted a doll... and of course it left me thirsty for more. But alas, relief was not to come, I was left alone to struggle with trial and error until I found my own way. I am not sure if this made me wise but here is what I have learned and I want to share :)

* Always pretend the piece you are working on is your BEST-PIECE-EVER!! give it all you've got and if you are tired, take a break, don't push it and got Pete's shake DON'T bake it tonight... just because you are antsy!!

* Money is not a good way to judge how good (or decide how bad) your work is! You will be amazed when you see what people spend THOUSANDS of dollars on these days. Just because a baby got a better price than yours or an artists sells for $3000 doesn't mean YOUR work is bad.

* Don't cut corners... smooth out right NOW, not at the end. Clean up NOW, not at the end... do it as you go along, because in the end, it will all come together!

* Don't bake for more time in a lower temperature!! This is not food! This is chemistry! A certain temperature must be reached for clay to polymerize... seriously!

* Cracks and moonies are part of the business.. and a note to collectors, if you are looking for "perfect" buy machine made... these are hand made pieces... made by imperfect people :) it's what makes them unique!!

* I still cross my fingers before placing a piece in the oven... Remember, you are not done until it makes it out of the oven... "alive".

* Always use reference photographs... always... seriously, I mean it!

* Don't be afraid to experiment!!

* It's ok to lower your price if it means you can use the money to buy more clay and try again... For a few years I was working in a regular 9-5 job and I sculpted. I used the money I made from the dolls I sold just to buy tools and clay, I made NO profit whatsoever, in fact my day job was supporting my sculpting.

* you don't need fancy tools or a fancy studio... I use maybe 6 tools and two of them are knitting needles!

* Study..every chance you get. It doesn't matter if you've been sculpting 10 minutes or 20 years...

* Don't give up. The ONLY way to become good is practice.. NOTHING else.

* Lastly, don't rush into producing your own vinyl yet... Be fair and critical, look around you. Spend the money to train more, do a class, buy more clay and practice more, take stock again in 6 months. And in all honesty (and this goes to me too!) having a kit out does not make you a successful artist. The opposite. A bad kit will tar your reputation because kits never look as good as the OOAKs and more people will see the vinyl not the OOAK and they will judge you based on that...

Just my two cents :) Take it or leave it... take it with a pinch of salt even... take some of it :) I wish someone had told me all this when I first started :)

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