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Creative Casey's Blog

Monday, June 23, 2014

New PR!

I ran in the first Teacher's Challenge 5k this past weekend.
This race was to benefit our city school district teacher's and students. I did most everything you shouldn't do before running a race. Like high milage running all week and the day before, a party the night before and not enough sleep. Although I was quite tired and my hair was a bit frizzy I still ran well and did surpassed my previous PR.  I placed 35th out of about 500 runners overall. In my age division for females I placed 4th out of 117. (I would have placed 3rd if I had been 5 sec. faster.) My time was 22.46! I felt like a slug about half way through and had pushed it to fast near what I thought was the end (the race map wasn't clear at all) and so once I realized I had another 1/2 to 3/4 of a mile to go I felt even slower. So I was pleasantly surprised when I saw the finish time. What was perhaps even cooler was a guy running in a funny costume behind me (I could hear him on my heels the entire time) came up to me and said thank you for inspiring him but his goal was to keep up with me throughout the race.

My friend Amanda and neighbor Bob's daughter Stephanie also ran in the race and they both did great.  

Next up is the Music4Everyone race this Sunday which will mark the one year anniversary of my first race and then 5 days later I'll be running in the Brighton July 4th race before taking some time off before the Warrior Dash!

Connecting Through Art

Most recently I haven't had a lot of time to create (which has been a source of disspointment this summer).  What I have done is still try to connect through art activities with others.

Relating to earlier posts, I've participated in another global community swap utilizing inspirational hands. I started receiving some in the mail over the past week and have indeed found them inspirational. Especially at a time when I've felt so hectic and hurried all of the time. Viewing them gives me a moment to enjoy and reflect upont the messages sent to me.

Another ongoing project was a local fundraiser for the Rochester Contemporary Art Center. This is the 7th annual 6x6 fundraiser. It's become not only a local but global form of connecting through art. Each year I create and donate pieces for the fundraiser and purchase a piece.  I was excited to make it down to ROCO in person and choose my piece. I absolutely love the piece I chose. This year instead of waiting until mid-July when you pick up your piece to find out who the artist is, once you purchased the piece you received the information. Ironically, once again I chose a person not only from Rochester but who lives one street over from me.  I find this totally insane as each year this is over 5,000 pieces of artwork from 50 states and 26 countries and all 7 pieces I have chosen are from artist in Rochester and 3 of the pieces I've come from people that have lived within one of me.  What a small world it is!

Disappointing news is that in a earlier post I mentioned participating in the Global Peace Art Project Exchange. I created my piece in Jan/Feb and mailed out in April to my match which was in India. However, I never received anything from them or an email from them about my piece.  Recently I emailed the person (although I have no idea if they could read English) but haven't heard anything in response.  This is a big bummer as I was really excited to see what they created and feedback on my piece. I contacted the site and they may have someone that can exchange a piece with me but it's not the same.

I conduct art therapy groups with developmentally disabled children and adolescents and facilitated a group last night. For the art therapy session I found old pieces of wood from a barn, floor boards, recycled from house projects, and so and then had each resident paint a piece.  Once the pieces were dry the group worked together to create how they wanted to put each piece of wood together to create one large art piece.  They then experienced using a hammer and nails to adhere the pieces together (this was done with assistance and supervision).  I think most of their favorite part was the hammering and nailing of the pieces.  The end project was varnished and the group determined that they wanted to place the piece in one of the outside gardens they were creating. I forgot to take a picture of the final piece but here's a pic I found on the internet that was my inspiration for this group art therapy session.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Catching Up

I've been lacking in keeping up with my blog over the past couple of weeks. Been a bit busy. So here's the skinny on what I've been up to.

1. I got to run the Corporate Challenge 2014! My professor surprising gave us the night off and although registration had closed one of my co-workers canceled out at the last moment so I was able to take her place. I ran as our 60 y/o nurse.  This event was pretty crazy. There was almost 11,000 people in the race. Our company didn't rent a tent or sponser food so my co-workers and I hauled a pop up tent and camping chairs over a mile and illegal found a spot to set it all up. Our team enjoyed the benefits of this; however we still had no food which was a slight bummer. Mostly because it was a long night and as you're rounding the last half mile you smell tons of bbq food from the other company tents so I was at least salvating.

Overall, I ran really well. It was wierd in that it wasn't a 5k but 3.5 miles. I came in first for females in my company and 2nd overall in my company. I ranked 81st of about 5,500 females overall in the race and 627 out of almost 11,000 total runners.  I was very pleased with my results.

**Next up on the race front-a Teachers 5K to support our city school district, then a 4th of July 5K with my friend and her family, followed by the Warrior Dash.

2.  I'm back into yoga (well a little). My friend and I went to Lulu Lemon on a Sunday morning as they have free yoga, pilates and zoomba classes.  We followed up with a run along beach path at Durrand Park and then laid out at beach. To round off our day we went to Cheese Masters and had an amazing grilled cheese sandwich ending with Yolishous for froyo for dessert. What a perfect day.


Work also is sponsering free yoga for faculty, students and staff every Wednesday so I went last week and am planning to go to as many as I can. We did yoga outside last week on the grass which was nice but had it's challenges, such as ants on my mat. ;(

3.  I went to my parents this past weekend to help celebrate my grandma's 85th birthday. We threw a surprise large family/friend birthday party for her. My mom asked me to make a sunflower banner to post up at the event. She always forgets how long this takes. I spent about 2.5 hours making it but it turned out well and I think my grandma appreciated. 

My mom outdid herself with making awesome centerpieces. She made up 16 sunflower centerpieces using canning jars, one fake sunflower, burlap and ribbon and finished them off with ordering real sunflowers and some time of neat filler that smelled good. My job was to put the flower arrangements together. I think I did pretty good.

Painting on a Giant Rock

Last August when I requested my dad hunt down and haul up some flat river rocks for me to use to make the walkway for my Little Free Library, he found and hauled back a giant rock to his house to decorate out front in his yard.  He been bugging me ever since to paint their family name and house number on the rock. I put him off due to the weather until this summer but then had to pay it forward.

I spent not quite 4 hours sitting on grass painting this rock. Of course when it came time to paint it my parents got fancy and requested a deer and a sunflower to be placed on the rock also.  So, here's how I did it:
1. Requested my mom clean off the rock so it would be ready to go.
2. Bought "Sticky" primer. Supposedly sticks to all surfaces. Put primer on the rock where I wanted to paint.
3. Used a pencil to sketch on the image designs and lettering.
4. Used rustoleum indoor/outdoor glossy black to outline all images and to outline and fill in all letters and numbers.  This was the biggest pain as it took about 3 coats in order to not be streaky.
5.  Then I used regular acrylic paints in yellow and brown to paint the images. 
6.  I finished by putting a few coats of polyurethane on the entire rock.

Overall it turned out well. My parents seem to really like it and others that have seen it like it. I wish I would have used some more variation in the deer as far as whites and lighter shades of brown as I would have liked it to contrast the black outline more. In addition, I would have painted the horns with more brown if I had bothered to go into my parents house and look at the many deer heads my dad has up to see what color they really are.  * I had no color images to go from so I just worked from memory and tried to keep the images and colors used simple.