Thursday, September 17, 2009

Next week off for a face painting convention! A must attend experience --

Friday, August 14, 2009

brilliant ideas on diversity -- as told in a story format

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

painting at Rohnert Park Gymnastics

Took some time at the end of last week and painted at Rohnert Park Gymnastics. The kids were allowed to pick from pages of things I HADN’T done before…so these are all new ideas for me. I painted two sisters who looked like twins bu weren’t. Actually when the second one came and sat down I had to ask her if she had a sister out on the gymnastics floor since I knew I wasn’t seeing double. She said they werent twins but people always assume they are. What do you think…twins? Also tried a new unicorn since Im looking to do a different one from my standard and have been meaning to do this warrior helmet forever….Of the 3 siblings who wanted it was the girl who wanted it in ‘girly’ colors of blue and pink vrsus grey and green. It was pretty good for the first go-round. Also painted that day were rainbow spidermen….

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

July 5
Ive just crash landed back at HQ after another all day event. Today Miles and I were at Penngrove park for their 34th annual hometown parade. It was a long day that started with the perfect storm of horribleness for Roger. I took the van with all the set-up in it and he took the kids in the station wagon. As he got out the driveway he realized he didn’t have enough gas to make it to the park, so stops at the gas station…where he realizes his tire is FLAT. So he goes back home to air up the tire only to find the air chuck (or whatever) has gone missing so he has to go to another gas station to air up. Ok; gas, air….then the daughter says ‘daddy…’ and he turns around and promptly barfs all over herself and begins to cry. Ack! Back home and into the shower…about that point I call and ask where he is as Ive had to lug all my stuff and try to set up the tent and the humongous weights all by myself.
I soldier on and he washed the daughter and appears down at the park a half hour later. Miles stays with me and we finish the set up. He is continuing his education as line manager (still working on customer service skills) but he got to see the parade up close and catch candy as they went by (kind of like a mobile piƱata!) we were pretty hoppin after the parade ended all the way up until about 15 minutes before the closing time – even though there was another ‘free’ face painter volunteering for her church.
I talked to bunches of old-timer penngovians, some of whom have only ever moved 5 miles away from where they were born!
I finally smartened up and let Miles wield the camera as I always have the best of intentions but hardly ever break long enough to snap anything.
We stopped at some fast food on the way home and he talked me into giving him 10 minutes at the toy store with half his pay for the weekend. He came out with some nerf dart gun (yeah…not) and then on to home – where approximately 2 hours later he now has the barfs…oh joy

July 4
Big event at the Santa Rosa Fairgrounds tonight. We loaded in at 2 and the event began at 4. Clementine did the airbrushing and I face painted. Miles had his debut as line manager. He was assisted by Wentir and while I still need to work on his customer service skills I was really freaked out to find long after the fact that Wentir (possibly with his help) made change for a $100 bill. Eeckk! But the numbers seemed to have worked out so I guess its ok.

The big seller of the night was my swirls and curls with added stars and stardust which is an adaptation of the usual swirl and curl but in patriotic color. I couldn’t believe it we only did 2 spidermen, 1 butterfly and 1 skull face the entire night! I’ll attach the other big sellers.

The only other bauble of the evening was that 'The Friendly Competition' showed up just before the doors opened and they were not happy to find us there. She walked right up and said ‘we have a problem.’ However it appeared that they were not given an exclusive as she didn’t claim it – although they said they spoke to the organizer no fewer than 4 times and he didn’t volunteer that there would be other body artists in attendance. She and her companion elected to move their set up next to the line for the jumpy house and I believe they did fine.

I know we had to turn people away as we could no longer see as it was just past 8:30 and the light was going. Roger did a great job in closing the line (relieved the kids) and sending the ‘overflow’ to the clowns. He was very proper and asked the clowns if they would still be working before he sent them down. We did pretty well, we had fun, saw fireworks, got the van run into by another vendor and got to bed very late.

Oh.. the van? We were loading out and the neighbor dude had a suburban and a uHaul….scritch…uHauls fender was dragged down the drivers door. We still don’t know how bad/what kind of damage there is.

First Friday on 4th

July 3
Tonight was the First Friday on 4th in Downtown Santa Rosa. I had some problems getting and keeping staff (both models and painters) so we opted to just offer face painting and henna. Rogers contribution to the evening was to advise me if it was something he could do (like a glitter tattoo) it wasn’t art  and to only bring out things that required skill…we camped next to Mike again. This guy just really doesn’t like kids and well, mine are pretty high maintenance so I kept encouraging them to go play elsewhere…The 4 hours went by pretty darn slowly but I did meet the new ‘administration’ young gal Tara and funny sidekick Ty. They seem like they will be more open to doing something a little more...'interesting'…although the first words out of his mouth were “so, youre not going to cause any trouble this month are you?” I assured him that especially tonight I wouldn’t cause trouble.
I did a few face paintings and a henna for a young mom and her two little boys. They would be separated for a week so they wanted matching henna froggies. Unfortunately no pictures!!

July 2
Farmers market tonight! Today’s special was a $1 discount for red, white and blue designs…and doncha know it I only sold one (and then dad tipped the ‘saved’ dollar) I really wanted to push the patriotic designs – I wore one myself – as I will be doing these all rest of the weekend. We start with a downtown Santa Rosa booth tomorrow day/evening then the Fairgrounds on Saturday for the big fireworks show and then Sunday for an old fashioned hometown parade!

Friday, July 3, 2009


didja ever wonder why there were no pictues on this blog so far? I sure other blog here: has oodles of them. But somehow I never got them here. UNTIL NOW.... lets give it a whirl shall we?

Thursday, July 2, 2009

FREE Henna Class through the Sonoma County Library System

June 29
Free Henna class in Petaluma today. The class was a BIG one with 23 kids. And it wasn’t that the number was really that big but the tables were in long rows. I really need to re-think my set up.

The librarian was really into it (which is always nice) and she brought a pile of books with mehndi and henna and travel books, and kids story books with pictures and everything. It was a good group but I didn’t get to spend the attention on them that I can when theres only 12 or so. The bummer of the day was that 2 bottles of henna went missing….

We have 5 more classes to go, the next being in Santa Rosa on July 8 – I expect the remaining classes to also be big as both the library and I are really pushing the classes!

Private Parties all over town!

June 27
2 words..HEAT WAVE. I was about a million degrees today. Clementine was booked out to do the Sonoma County Museum’s Family Fun Day and then a party in Windsor…and she was hot.

I had a private party (kindergarten graduation) in Petaluma and then my girl scout troop was graduating so we had our own pool party (so I wasn’t quite as hot) The day was capped off my doodling henna on co-leader Jen…Apparently she had never had henna before!
June 26
Free face painting for Howarth park movie night. I have a soft spot for this event as it was one of the first ones I ever did. Last year I refined my offerings that I offer several movie theme designs for ‘tips’ and the rest are regular farmers market prices.

The movie was Ghostbusters so the designs were slimmer, the ghostbuster logo as well as Marshmallow man…geez, its been years and years since Ive seen the movie so I had to research these! Slimer was pretty easy, a green blob! Add details and hes done. The logo was only a little more complicated – and no one wanted Marshmallow man :( but it seemed pretty easy to do. And when all was said and done – even though the turn out was small, the jumpy people weren’t there and the ponies weren’t discounted I did pretty well.

As a bonus Zane ran into a few little friends and he and Bentley got to run around with them including going on the train and paddle boats while I worked, a perfect summers evening, fun was had by all!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

June 24
Wow. These teens in the henna class are just blowing me away! This last group of 12 kids was so into it and talented it was amazing! We even had one young man, only 12 years old who did the most intractie geometric glove Ive ever seen a kid do. Talk about patience and persistence! The librarian was great too. There was a factoid I was stumbling on and she went off and researched it while I taught (how cool is that!) In case youre wondering ….in the Jewish faith you can not be truly clean with a barrier between your skin and God, hence nail polish can not wadu with that layer of polish on your fingernails. Conversely, henna goes into your skin (top layers) is all natural and water can cleanse the skin directly so Mehndi can be worn by Jews in prayer…
Next stop on the Henna tour is Petaluma. Ive spoken to the librarian and she thinks we’ll have a good turn out and says the class is being reviewed very well (yay!)

Friday, June 26, 2009

June 22
FairyDust Faces was in Windsor this afternoon with a rockin bunch of kids. 13 in all including 2 boys. The work that came out of this group was stellar! As an added bonus they even laughed at my jokes. There were a few that were very studious and sketched out their entire design first and those that just went right ahead and put henna to skin. There was a set of 3 siblings that kept the class lively and giggling. The low point of the class was my camera died before any of the students had completed their masterpieces. The highlight of the class (other than the fabulous work) was there was a girl who wanted to know more about me, and my business who seemed so taken with the idea of henna and body art. She wanted to know if I had a store she could come shop and look at things (alas, no) I did direct her to the web site and if she emails I’ll make sure to point out some of the great forums. This young one I think has all the ear-markings of enthusiastic body artist!
June 21,
Goes down in history as Fathers Day and the day my computer died (play a funeral dirge here) Oh man what am I supposed to do without my forums, facebook and EMAIL!! Heck even my business phone and calendar are tied into my PC. Ive been reduced to cleaning my desk 

On a brighter side we went to the Pirate Festival in Novato today – and the question of ‘what ever happened to all the displaced local ren-faire people has been answered!! They’re all pirates now! I did a pretty good pirate face but was waaay under dressed. I saw friend Lena there browsing some super great costumes and had to stop by the Magikal Face Painting booth run by Kristin Scott. I believe Katherine Grillos was working just then (I think it was Katherine) and since she was so busy I just said I dropped by to say hi. But if you ever have the opportunity to see Magikal Face Painting in action go see them. Kristin does the BEST sweet-nothing eye look!
Now that my desk is clean and this entry written Im off to pack supplies for the next henna for teens class tomorrow afternoon, but first thing Im going down to our ISP to have our modem checked!!

henna class

June 20
Today I was in Guerneville teaching the second henna for teens class. We had a small turn out but it was fun. Two of the girls even stayed an extra half hour and when the one left she had an entire sleeve of henna! Im not sure if it was because I rewrote my lecture part or not but this group didn’t need any ‘hand holding’ and just went right at it! One thing I am noticing though is that teenage girls don’t laugh at my jokes…hmmmm

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

June 19
Private party this afternoon. Siena turned 4 today! Mom Sasha and I decided I should come a half hour into the party to give people time to show up…ehh heemmm, except the guests didn’t start to show up until 45 minutes into the party. So while I waited I painted the birthday girl, her mom, the moms best friend and anyone else I could catch. We did a nice hibiscus floral design down the friends shoulder…the kids started coming and then just didn’t stop!

The only bit of drama was my car completely emptied the coolant reservoir down their driveway when I showed up! I hosed it off and the wonderhub came out and switched cars with me while I was working, so alls well that ends well. Hes marvelous with mechanical things so I know he’ll figure out whats going on with it!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Teen Henna Class

June 17
Yesterday was the first in my series of 10 henna classes for the Sonoma County Library system. Cloverdale is a pretty small place and we had 6 girls turn out. I was a little nervous as the librarian sat in on the entire thing – but she was very nice and chatty, so it added to the class. We went over what henna is, how it works and then practiced some basic strokes on paper. We moved on to connecting the design elements on hand templates and then graduated to the real stuff! The girls were very very hesitant to begin, and I’m wondering if I over stated how quickly the design would transfer. But after a little bit and one of the girls totally wiping off her design the resistance was broken and they really started getting into it. There was one however who needed no prodding. This young lady didn’t go for any of the traditional elements but at my suggestion did something she usually draws. She ended up with an entire dragon and forest scene on her left arm along with a wolf howling at the moon on the underside of her arm. Way to go! The last two girls to leave even did their feet; hearts, peace signs, and smiley faces….very cute. This class definitely taught ME a few things. Less talk, more work and the next time we do this (in 2 days from now) I will start the hands on section with a ;follow me’ design of a basic flower so the initial apprehension will be broken….more on that in a few days!!
June 15
Yesterday was one of the best days ever! I went and painted at the Novato Mothers Club annual picnic (interesting side note; we’ve worked for the Sonoma and Novato mothers clubs and have never been hired to do an event for either of the mothers clubs I have been on the board of or belong too…odd no?) In any event, there are 3 girls there to help me set up the tent, they continually ask if they can feed or water me and the kids are great. I really liked the moms (my kind of people!) and hope to get some calls from this group later. The day was capped off by a dad who must be running for a ‘super dad’ award as he carried TWO of my tent weights at once. I can barely drag one…hope he didn’t get a hernia! He then took the other two one of the moms had put on a dolly and tossed those in the van too…that was one strong guy!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

really starting to catch up now!

June 14
Yesterday was the Health and Harmony Festival at the Santa Rosa Fairgrounds. Ok the festival actually was 3 days, starting Friday and going until today. But I only painted yesterday (Saturday) Alison’s friend, Peri has a booth in the Goddess Grove and the idea had been to do some body painting and bring out the neons which are black light reflective for the big techno party last night. I was mildly surprised to see not only the 2 others I knew would be painting but another woman also set up shop with Peri’s group – apparently another friend was asked to play along. I was at the back of the queue and as each of the other painters had 2 customers to my ZERO I went scouting the rest of the grounds.

There was another face painter in the children’s area as well as a booth offering ‘free’ face painting. So I return to my last place position and get ‘lucky’ with 2 clients (whoot now I’m up $13 and its ‘only’ been an hour and a half) after more standing around a young lady comes up who does hair braiding she, it seems, is looking to trade spaces. Her space is ALL THE WAY across the grounds…so off I go again to check it out. When I find the right people (who did not exactly embody the ‘harmony’ ideal)) they say they are already doing face painting so no, I’m not welcome there either….so back I go to the Goddess Grove.

At this point it’s around 1:30pm and when I return there is ANOTHER face painter working in Peri’s area. Huuu, I sez to myself, this really isn’t working for me. I make my apologies to Peri explaining I think we’re a little overstaffed and pick up my supplies to find a new spot. I land along the walkway at a cross roads and promise myself to try it for an hour and if nothing good comes of it I will pack up and go home. After 20 minutes I have been asked where the bathroom is 4 times and directions to other places twice. I’m done in this spot!

As a last ditch effort I decide I need to approach the face painter in the children’s area – maybe he’s a business man and I can make a deal. When I arrive in the children’s area Diego is working with a troop of performers and not staffing his booth. Finally after 10 or so minutes I interrupt him and explain I’m a face painter without a country and ask if I could paint at his booth. He explains to me that usually he takes FIFTY percent!! But in my case he’ll go with thirty. Knowing I can go home or make 70% I accept the 30% fee. I set up shop and have an instant line.

Diego concludes his parade with his performers half an hour later and calls me into his tent (while I still have a huge line) asks me to count out and pay him his 30% “just so we’re on the same page”

He then proceeds to say ‘no waiting’ to the line and takes 5 kids in and sits them around himself on low stools. Diego’s way of painting is different from mine, in that he does several strokes on each face and moves down, like an assembly line. Often this means that each kid gets the same / similar look. Diego’s samples are mostly feathery multi-colored eye masks which he tailors to the child’s favorite color scheme. He does this by dipping a brush on some sort of water color (?) crayon –( and yes I mean a crayon as in small cylindrical thing).

About 10 minutes after he begins and my little friend Samantha has just reached my chair Diego calls out that there is a melt-down and I must take over a little girls design. I answer just as soon as I’m finished with Samantha I would be happy to do it Diego replies ‘NO, now’

What happens over the next 7-8 minutes is nothing short of a melodrama. The mother calling him various things including ‘talentless’ and him tying to give her the money back, changing his mind and saying ‘you’re paying me for what I did’, with her telling me how horrid he is, with him telling her, and then me, that if she didn’t apologize to him and the whole crowd that I would be told to go home as I wasn’t really supposed to be there anyway and concluding with him saying ‘this isn’t working’ and that most likely I should just leave. Meanwhile I’m just trying to duck and cover. I’ve never gotten in trouble for being too good before.

After she leaves and insists on tipping with a $5 -- as he doesn’t get a percentage of tips. Diego decides the answer is for me to move my set-up inside the tent – and to get rid of my photo board (no photo board! Doesn’t he know I can’t paint without my photo board!!) So Samantha’s mother helps me move my table into the tent and we begin anew.

It takes a full 2 hours for him to finally say ‘whew, that woman’s energy has finally left’ ….ah hhmmm.

Diego ducks in and out over the next couple of hours and we have a comfortable work environment. The next problem doesn’t arise until its 8 something getting dark and Roger wants to come pick me up. Diego has gone to dinner an hour earlier and never reappeared. I still need to cash out with him and have no idea where he is! And while I really don’t want to even touch the cash without him being there I am forced not only to break out his 30% but to leave it along with my card with the coordinator of the children’s area. (yes, I realize this is very risky) I leave with several hundred for the day. Diego’s cut total has been $141

Then this morning I get a call from him asking how I would like to settle up! Only to be followed by a second call an hour later confirming the receipt of the money….
So , was I better off having done this event or not? Should I have stayed in the goddess grove (where they apparently each made $100 a day)

Friday, June 19, 2009

second in catch-up line (did she say Ketchup?)

June 13
Last night I worked with Marti-Cate and the most awesome henna artist I’ve ever seen, Darcy V. The kids were great (Novato High) and chose a lot from the special henna sample book I put together. One design idea was complete synchronicity. I have a 007 (James bond) looking design and one of the boys asked for it to be 009 … as in the year of graduation and it made total sense! A combo of James Bond and their graduation year – perfect! I did that altered design on several boys. As the night wore on and they got wilder (and more random) I did the word DUDE on one guys back – to go with his friends ‘sweet’ done by Darcy and a palm tree and the Oakland A’s logo as well as astrological signs, a ‘mom’ heart and eyes over a nose and airbrushed lips…it was a long night, getting in at 3am but saw Franco from Family airbrush and got to work alongside Darcy – so it was a good night!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Catching up!

Sat June 6/Sun June 7

The last big Event coordinator festival until fall is this weekend. We're back down on Union Street and know the wind can be wicked bad. This festival is being billed as an 'art festival’ by the location and an 'eco festival' by the event company. I decided against doing a bunch of 'eco' faces as most of our young clients tend to go for the same thing – no matter the theme of the event. We did skull faces on boys at Easter and every festival we’ve been at… along with Spiderman, tigers, princess crowns and butterflies plus of course my favorite Gina Niemi inspired swirls and curls.

Update: the days were long and the booth was kept up overnight. I had Clementine and Liz strip the booth of anything that could be carried away – with the exception of a 2 gallon water container, which in the perverse nature of the universe, was taken during the night. So we re-set the entire booth this morning and had a good time.

The most notable things to come out of this weekend's events were the girls painted mustaches on each other and they were a HUGE hit!! Who woulda thunk. We sold maybe 10 mustaches painted on 20 something girls, a few pre-teen girls, and a couple of 20 something guys. My girls got so many comments and guys hitting on them because of their mustaches…however it was San Francisco ;)

The other notable thing was the paid security guard was a little overly officious and after letting in several cars, including Roger, then tried to bar Liz from bringing in the van. Roger ran down and had a 'discussion' with the guard which ended up in Roger taking the steering wheel from Liz and driving onto the grounds – as the security guard screamed at him and at the last minute threw himself on the mirror of the van. Then he started yelling that Roger had run over him and he called the cops on a 'hit and run'.

The cops showed up after several minutes (and several more cars coming onto the grounds) and ran Rogers license, spoke to the security guard and sent us on our way….while my kids all cowered in the back seat certain they were going to be fatherless as he would be taken off to the big house.

In the end it was a profitable weekend and we did some good work

Friday, May 8, 2009

just finished henna night with the mothers club...non stop fun! Getting ready for airbrush gig (first communion) at Occidentals Negris where is that compressor!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

finally stopped procrastinating and am getting ready for tomorrow night Santa Rosa Mothers Club Pamper Night. I'll be doing henna art. To all my SRMC friends...sign up early, spaces are limited!
new photos of Kids in The Kitchen. Mothers Day Cake Workshop
The SonomaMarin Fair is using my "Best of Show" cake on their 'enter your stuff' page

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

RIP Dom DeLuise. He was great in Fievel Goes West

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

shout out to all my peeps (and a test)

Monday, May 4, 2009

So I went back to toastmasters after a month absence tonight. made for the end of a busy day with art in 4th grade plus girlscouts

Friday, May 1, 2009

Day Under the Oaks Press Release

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Totally excited, one of my favorite instructors will be at convention in Sept!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

From Jay Gordon, MD FAAP

Swine Flu/Tamiflu
April 26, 2009

Just wash your hands.

Every year, hundreds of viruses pass through the pediatric and adult community. Many of the bugs are disruptive and keep kids out of school and adults away from work. Some of the viruses have unique signs and symptoms, but most just cause amorphous aches, sneezing, coughing or intestinal upset.

Influenza viruses, especially new ones, trigger more news stories and can be made to seem much more frightening and dangerous than they really are. Government agencies and media don't supply statistical context and make it sound like you've got a "fifty-fifty" chance of contracting this new virus. They then make it sound like a lot of people who get this influenza end up in the hospital and may die. Statistically, nothing could be further from the truth: The chance that the new virus is really dangerous is small. The chance that you'll get it is much, much smaller, and the possibility that you or a family member will be harmed by the virus is so slim that the news should be on page twenty, not page one.

Swine Flu is a virus for which there is no vaccine, no threat to your family and there are undoubtedly tens of thousands of harmless undiagnosed cases throughout the world. The news stories are probably taking a hundred questionable respiratory deaths in Mexico and guessing.

There actually is a very, very small chance that this virus could cause severe illness and whenever this occurs hospitalization and even fatalities are reported. The likelihood of a pandemic is miniscule, but newspapers, governments agencies and the manufacturers of pharmaceuticals do their best work and make their biggest sales when people are scared.

Tamiflu is recommended for treatment and prevention of this influenza virus. The company which gets the drug's royalties (Gilead) has as a major stockholder- -previously Chairman--one Donald Rumsfeld.

Local pharmacies are already running low on Tamiflu.

Connect these dots.

usual boring admonitions apply: wash your hands, stay well-rested and well-hydrated. You do not need to buy Tamiflu. It is an effective antiviral drug but has possible side effects.

far as our office prescribing Tamiflu, we would rather not, but we will if you insist. I promise you that I personally am purchasing none for my family and would recommend the same to you.

Long day today. Booked 2 parties and have been sorting through body models and prospective photographers. Be watching for us to do a little live model painting downtown Santa Rosa this summer!
test2...looking to show up on twitter, post blog, and face book

Butter & Eggs Day

Just finished Butter & Eggs event in Petaluma. Had a great time and painted some great faces!


this is a test....blogging has been recommended as a great way to help get the word out about our business...because we rock!