My job is ending, but my business is really beginning…


Hello Lovelies! I’m here!  I’ve not abandoned my blog, though, to be honest, I had toyed with it.  I was feeling overwhelmed with life, and just the fact that there was a blog, that hadn’t been updated in a long time, was just sitting … not being updated… it mocked me.  Really, it did. But, I’ve come back. 

Quick update,  the company I work for has been purchased. For awhile, it was going to be refinanced, and then some potential buyers came by, but we were told it was a formality. I really hate being lied to, so I’ve had lots of grouchiness about working for a couple of old guys who were just trying to find a good deal for themselves, but lying to the people whose lives it would really affect.  I wish they would have owned their greediness, told the truth. It would have sucked anyway, but giving false hope really sucks.  We had hired a girl, literally 19,  to take the place of the old guy, but her life changed and she quit after 2 weeks.  Since March my schedule has been crazy, and I’ve been working most of the weekends, and it just sucked.  They finally hired another person, but now we all have to re-apply for our jobs if we want them, and I’m not sure I want to work for the new company. They expect us to “sell more” and will have quotas for us to meet, ugh. I’m thinking it may be time to look for a different job.

Just a few of the things I’ve made since my last post…

the_madness_begins shadowfaery 1klowncocooncollage 1RedBud_Goodbye_Collage


I’m taking a big step this year. I’m getting some help with my business. I want to do more than just custom orders,   I want my business to grow some, I want to grow as a person, and a business owner.

I am nearly frozen when speaking to people about what I do.  I’ve always had a fear of public speaking, as a kid, when I had to give presentations in school, all my friends told me I turned bright red, nearly glowed, there was a particular presentation in 10th grade, I was wearing yellow, and the red apparently lit up the yellow…ugh.  When it comes to speaking about my creations, you’d think I’d have an easier time, it’s what I love. But no.  Even if someone I know asks what I make,  it’s difficult for me to even get out the words “I create one of a kind art dolls.” It comes out more like “uh, I uh, you know, make dolls, usually, uh, creepy…”  Happily, there’s usually a computer around, and I log in and show my facebook page and things are better. I usually just let them scroll through the pictures and then things are easier.  I’ve never spoken to a business about selling some of my work at their shop, hell, I’ve never sold anything at a fair or convention of any type. I’m absolutely terrified. In my head what happens is a bunch of older ladies come by  and tell my my work isn’t good, and people like pretty things, what’s wrong with me. (Actually some older ladies  have said those things to me, I was working on zombies in a cafe, I used to do that some, and at different visits, there would be an older lady who would tell me that while my stitches were nice, and the work was well done, they were ugly. Clearly not my niche, and probably not going to be at a convention,  but they’re in my head, for now.  The world would not end if I sat somewhere with dolls I’d made and NOT sold one, I’d feel embarrassed as hell and it would probably feel like the end. I don’t know if I could have that happen much more than once.

BUT, I also have dreams. As scared as I am to speak to people, I am terrified that if I don’t ever give real effort to my business, if I don’t ever really try, I’d regret it.  I don’t have huge dreams of world domination…not right now at least… but I want to be able to face real people, I want to learn to market these guys, I love them, and others seem to also. I’d like to go to cool conventions up and down the coast and be excited to go and see people who will want my dolls. There are some other ideas brewing, but I’m actually going to be taking classes, and checking out different fairs and conventions in the area, once I learn to tell people face to face that I make creepy and fantastical dolls and they are going to want one.  That is my plan for this year. I’ll be sharing what’s going on with me here, at least that’s my plan… best laid plans of mice and all…

Well that’s that. I still need a bit of money coming in, so will look into another part time gig, but always looking to that time when I can say, “you know, I appreciated that you gave me a job, but my business is really taking off, and I don’t really need to work this job anymore. Thank you, and here’s my two-week’s notice.” THAT is my dream.

Keep it creepy!








My not so blog-worthy life…


Hello dear ones.  It’s been a long time, I know. Going to try to give you the gist of what’s been going on.

Last time was the  Halloween contest, which was fantastic!  If you haven’t read the Halloween stories, up top of my blog there are titles, one says “My Halloween Contest”–that’s all the entries for my contest.  The winner, Fatima, won my green Franken-monster. I just got a picture of Fatima and Frank, they look happy together!!!

Since then, I’ve finished my Ash CareBear.  Just in case it doesn’t ring a bell, he’s patterned after this CareBear drawying by yayzus

Evil_Dead_Ash_care_bear_by_4unt3r     AshCareBear,Kim's Sticks and Strings

He’s about 12″ tall standing, but he can sit as well.   His bloody chainsaw and “boomstick” are made of polymer clay, but the rest is yarn/thread.  I really enjoyed making him, I really do love the different things folks ask me to make.  I shared him with the deviantART artist, he dug him!

Also working on a skull pattern, one that can be closed or left open.  I’ve only made one, and she was a learning experience, but I decided she was cool enough that I needed her to be my first sugar skull of my own entire design.  Here she is

my sugar skull, Kim's Sticks and Strings


Definitely a learning experience, now I need to make a few changes, and make sure to sew in the eyes before closing the bottom.   This skull pattern has been eluding me for awhile, which bothers me.  I can make an Ash CareBear in a few days’ time but the skull keeps me at a distance. Partly because I’ve been wanting to create one that can be left open, or close it, maybe that’s harder to do.  Also, I’ve been fighting with stylistic and realistic.  At some point I want to make a realistic looking skull. I just know it will be a big labor of love, and then I probably won’t want to stuff it.  Realistic skull on the back burner, I’m sure it will take me a few weeks once I start it…back burner for sure.

Regular old life is keeping me on my toes, I guess.    Near the end of September, my husband, who has always had some anxiety and depression issues, but to the extent I did not know, really started to feel more hopeless.  He’s been out of work for a bit, and things haven’t felt quite right for him.  One Wednesday, while at work, I got a call from him, saying that he’s been feeling really down lately, and in the last day or so, didn’t have too many reasons to stick around.  For many years, he’s said I was the thing keeping him going at it day in and day out.  He didn’t want me to come home and find him.  But very recently, he’d had a harder time.  He went into the ER, and was there Wednesday afternoon through Friday night.  The doctors tried to get him to sign out, take home some light anti-anxiety meds, and call it good.  He still wasn’t convinced that he felt “better” and so went into an inpatient facility from Friday night through Monday.  There he got to see a doc, and a therapist daily, and was prescribed stronger meds, with a regular schedule.  Right now he’s on Klonapin,  twice a day,which is pretty strong, and Zoloft.  He’s not a fan of the Zoloft, he says it makes him feel a bit edgy, and he thinks his panic attacks have increased since being on it…there have been a few, usually when I’m not with him.  Then he takes something to help calm him, and that makes him sleepy.  He’s still getting used to the meds, though I’m hoping they’ll decrease the Klonapin a bit, he’s always has a hard time staying focused on some tasks, but lately he’s having more of the issues with walking into a room for something, and completely losing his original intent.  It’s bothering him some.

I’ve avoided dealing with it for over a month now.  It’s really easy to do.  I just get involved with day to day stuff, job 3 times a week, my crochet orders, and regular chores.  If I just stuff it away, I won’t have to really think that at one point, my husband could have decided that he wouldn’t maybe feel quite as bad if I found his body.  I didn’t know it was that bad.  He isn’t exactly forthcoming about that stuff,  emotions and feelings and whatnot.   He comes from an original family with issues, his mum shouldn’t have been a mum, his parents had problems and divorced, and his mother did what many do, threw all her rage for her husband at my husband.  She’s terrible, I’ve met her and dislike her to my core.  So, he’s got anxiety, which he used to stave off by extreme mountain biking, long ago, but after breaking his heel, that’s really not an option. He used to fish more, I think he needs that outlet again, probably next year since it’s already fall now.    He says a job will help, though with the meds, I worry.  He’s got an interview for a gig in a couple days, the commute is 2 1/2 hours, one way.  I don’t know how I feel about it, but he wants to try, so of course I’ll let him.

Daily I worry.  Some days I come home and the house is clean, and dinner is nearly ready, and he feels good.  We message back and forth, and it’s a good day.  Other days he tells me it’s an “Everyone Can Go Fuck Themselves” day, he’s struggled to get a few things done, and says he feels like an 8 year old who wants to run away.   I just have to take each day as it comes, and it’s hard.  I go to work before he’s offiically awake, so I never know what to do to try to ensure it’s a good day, and I know I can’t, but I so want to try.  And I’m tired.  I am trying really hard not to worry, but it’s what I do.  I’ve always been a worrier.  As a child I worried if what I did would cause my mother to yell, now I worry I haven’t been upbeat enough. I know rationally my worrying can’t do anything, except give me the headaches and neckaches I’ve had for a few weeks now,  but it’s something I’ve done all my life.  I’ve worried all my life about how my actions would affect/anger others, and changed myself because I was worried what could happen.  And I’m tired of it.  Other people seem to get through the day without worrying, hell, without caring at all how their actions affect others.  There has to be a happy medium for me.

Through all this, I have had a few friends that knew all about this, and I am SO thankful for them.  Just being able to say things to someone else is a relief.    I feel a bit eggshell-y at home sometimes, so my friends who help me through this are amazing.  I love you all, you know who you are!  Hell, my boss’ mum gets lots of love though this too!!!  Not only was she at work the day the husband called me and went to the hospital, but she asks every couple of days about him, lets me vent, and is very lovely!  The most amazing individual is my dog Penny Crane.   She seems to know when he’s having a hard time.  He usually goes to his bed and covers up, she goes to him, and lies next to him .  She’s the one individual he will attend to daily.  She kind of demands it.  She wants to play ball, like…every minute she is awake.  BUT, when she senses he needs it, goes and lies down with him, no matter the time of day, or how long.  She is amazing.  I love her very much.

PennyCrane and Brainy


So…this is what has been keeping me from blogging.  None of my work was really blog-worthy, really, in my head.  I wasn’t outraged by anyone stealing or being rude.   And my husband was having some emotional troubles and dealing with it all is hard.  Still is.  I cried while writing this entire blog. and while I know that I really need to deal with it more, I’m kind of tired of blowing my nose, and wiping my tears.  I’m hopefully done crying today, though some of you usually comment, so I’ll cry again. But it’s the weekend, and I don’t want to cry on my days off.   So know you’ll probably hear more about this.  Right now I’m gonna get some more coffee and put on a horror flick, try to get lost in yarn…

Keep it creepy!!!

Late Post, I Know…


Hello Lovelies! I know that I usually post on Monday, but I didn’t really have anything…

Last week I was supposed to take a series of tests and do my last interview before getting that job.  Everything was looking good, and then they took my blood pressure… the nurse asked if I was stressed in any way. I know I looked at her with attitude, and she kind of giggled.  No…I”m not stressed. I”m unemployed, have been for a bit, husband is now looking for work…other things, random free-floating anxiety… No, I’m fine.  Though last year when I went to the doc to get my new prescription for birth control, they mentioned my blood pressure was high, and they made me lie there for 15 minutes in the dark and then take it again, before leaving with meds… And my mother was hypertensive…both of these things I told the nurse. BUT I hadn’t had coffee that morning so it should be better. She asked me to lie down in the dark and think relaxing thoughts (it was 148/90 the first time).  To START the test, a person’s blood pressure has to be below 130/80, sitting up.

So I laid there, in the dark, trying to think relaxing thoughts, which is completely not something I do well. I just started trying to focus on slowing my pulse, which was racing, and making my exhalations longer than my inhalations. The nurse came back quietly, and asked me to sit up slowly, which made me feel worse than I had been, but I did it, and it was lower, 144/83.  Still not good enough to  take the test, but she thought if I got into the surroundings I needed to test in, maybe something would be ok…AND I had to take the test after being upright a bit.  So we walked into the other room, and she told me just to relax and people watch, and just try to do some deep breathing… just her telling me to relax was stressing me out by now.  About 15 minutes later, the nurse came back, and gave me that smile that is supposed to be reassuring, and said “I hope you had relaxing thoughts!”  Apparently I didn’t. My blood pressure was 153/93.  They couldn’t test me. I did have to go back 2 days later to get my Tb test read, so I could try again.

I drove myself  home, determined to hold it together, and I did.  I cried walking into the house, but I was good while driving.  Told my husband the story, while looking up “lower blood pressure” on the interwebs.  I found all the things I could eat, and wrote down a small list of stuff to get, and decided I was gonna do it the more natural way… I chewed on garlic cloves, drank cranberry juice, ate garlicky, cayenne peppery food, and took magnesium, calcium, and hawthorn berry. And had no caffeine. And tried to think relaxing thoughts. HA!

Friday morning rolls around, I tried to get a good night’s sleep, and at some point decided that knowing that I was unhealthy was more important than anything else…  I got to the office and was seen pretty quickly. I”m negative for Tb, yay.  Then they took my blood pressure, 148/89.  This time the nurse said “I’m going to give you one more chance, I’ll let you lie here in the dark for a few minutes and see if you can just calm a bit.  She was gone for 20 minutes this time, she thought I needed a few extra minutes.. What I’d needed were hours…it went up to 153/90.    The nurse said she’d have to send in the results for the test, and maybe my job would let me get my blood pressure taken care of, and try again.

When I got home, I instantly called the last doctor I saw when I had insurance, he was our doctor for a few years, and knew our history. Luckily the office visits weren’t as much as I’d thought, and got an appointment for Tuesday, and emailed the  company of the job I was trying to get, to find out what I could do. It was Friday afternoon, so I’d be waiting for a bit… I kept my caffeine intake down, tried to go for walks and not stress.  The weekend was pretty uneventful, and so was Monday,  no call from the company, but Mondays can be busy.  Tuesday rolls around, and I go see Dr Zheng. I got in quickly, they took my blood pressure and I got into a room to talk to the doc pretty quickly. I like him, he straight talks me and is just nice.  My bp was 148/86, which wasn’t too high, but my heart rate was pretty elevated, and I was just resting, so a bit troubling.  Now I”m on Atenolol, and I go back for a check up in a month.  THEN as I was leaving the doc’s office, the company called.  They need someone to start NOW, not hopefully in a few weeks, AND since I had such a high bp without meds, they don’t want to chance me having that job, where I might have to be maneuvering  an adult larger than myself, if not larger, and maybe my  meds were off a bit… they’re covering themselves, but I understand, and would definitely not be ready to push myself so very quickly.  I was also told that when I got my health in order, there are other positions with the company that if they ever come up I could apply for.

So I’ve taken my first med, my heart rate is noticeably slower, and it’s not pounding.  It will be cool not to have my ears pounding when I go to bed tonight. I”m supposed to give it a couple days before driving by myself, but that’s ok.

So I’m still working on my clay  golem, I”ll put up a bunch of pictures for my next blog post. I”m sure this was the most boring post, but it’s been on my mind non-stop for a week now, so it’s nice to have a bit of resolution, even though not what I’d hoped for.  But, it’s not all that bad, AND I’ll be healthier… which is cool because I gotta KEEP IT CREEPY!  (and so do you!)

I’m a Worrier, or, The Most Depressing Post You’ll Read All Week.


Hi there, I”m back, though on a different day…it’s been a bit of a week…

It’s been one, LOOONG week, let me tell you.  Not the worst of weeks, but I could certainly have done with better.    My anxiety level has been really high this week and life just keeps seeming to throw those curve balls, and even though I try to anticipate them, things still upset me quickly…

You see, I’m a worrier. I have been for just about ever since I can remember. I had pretty good reason, at least I thought so.  Things were, lets say, pretty tumultuous in my family when I was a kid.  I could never be really sure how things were going to go from day to day.  Looking back, I would absolutely go as far as to say that my mother suffered from depression, I know my father did.  She got pregnant with me in high school,  and admitted that it was mostly because she didn’t get along with her mother, and hoped that having a baby would get her out of the house and make things better for her.  Well, if  how she was when I was a kid was any indicator, it didn’t get much better.  I also know for a fact that she never sought treatment for how she felt, but it was always pretty obvious to me that my mother wasn’t happy.  She told me all the time.  Pretty often after I’d done something wrong, selfish, stupid, idiotic…something a typical child would do…  Thus began all my anxiety, worrying, anticipating.  I played alone most of the time, drawing and reading lots, they were quiet activities where I didn’t have to talk. Even when I played with dolls, the conversations were in my head, so I didn’t make a sound.  We moved around a lot before I went to first grade, so I never had friends, which was good, I wouldn’t have been able to play anyway.

I spent my childhood all the way through my teenage years worrying. I would want to do something, let’s say, go play with my friend two door down. First, I’d figure out how my mother was doing that day, then weigh the pros and cons of just asking, and most often, would decide against it.  “No” wasn’t the worst thing she could, or even did say.  Once I went to first grade, things got a bit better– I got to go to school, see people, and not every decision had to be weighed so carefully, and I even got to talk to folks without worrying that just the act of speaking was wrong.  It sometimes did me a bit of a disservice, though.  My first day of first grade my mother was called to the school. I”d picked up the book we were to read for the whole year, a Dick and Jane reader, opened it up to the middle and began to read out loud to a group of kids… I could read, quite well, and that was weird.  While it was a good thing, at least I thought so, my mother demanded to know why I had to be a show off and stand out.  I ended up going down the hall during reading class to be with the 3rd graders.   It didn’t really impress her.  Every day on the way home I worried about what I was in store for when I got home…usually went straight to my room to do homework until dinner.

That’s pretty much how things went for me as a kid. Mother was unpredictable, so I avoided her. The parents had my sister when I was 5, they thought it would make things better. They weren’t better. Well, not for me.  My sister seemed to make my mother happier, so things were a bit better, but now I had to do care-taking , and sharing toys that my sister promptly ruined.  Mother blamed me for wanting such crappy toys.  I was blamed for my sister’s messes, for her noisiness, and any of her bad behavior.  I began to anticipate what she’d want to do, and how it would affect me, and tried to placate my sister, just so I wouldn’t get yelled at.

Luckily, I had my paternal grandparents, I think they’re what saved me.  I spent summers with them happily being a kid. talking, laughing and playing. We went to museums, art galleries, the beach, the park…I enjoyed every minute there, until the week I’d before I’d have to go home. which I spent trying to calm myself down and return to the kid I was. That made them sad, I had always wished I could live with them, but I obviously couldn’t ask, and when they did, I didn’t get to see them the next summer.  That was my punishment for wanting a good life.   Also, I sometimes forgot myself when I returned home, and acted like I was still back with my grandparents.  They usually got a call telling them they let me “get wild” and I needed to be corrected.  Spending time with my grandparents allowed me to develop my own personality, and I was, and still am, quite a smart-ass.  That definitely didn’t serve me well.  I didn’t always seem to have control of when I’d let stuff slip out, which didn’t bother my grandparents, they fostered it, it meant that I was smart…it kept me on restriction from going outside, watching tv or listening to the radio, and even from my precious books once my mother realized the real punishment came when she denied me reading.

It’s hard to go from a life of constantly weighing every action, everything I said, every breath, to not, which is why I’m still a worrier.  I’ve been unemployed, so I worry I’ll never get a job since there are way more qualified people who will work for less.  I worry when life is good, that something will go wrong. I worry that if I spend money on a few necessities that there will be an emergency that needs to be taken care of, but I bought underwear and deodorant.    Once, when I was in elementary school, I was late being dropped off by my friend’s mom because of traffic. I got an earful from my mother about how she thought I had been raped, murdered, and dumped naked in a field   with my entrails strewn everywhere.  Yea, really way out there, not sane, or normal, and not what a kid should ever have to hear.  And since then, besides over-thinking every decision, I always went to the worst possible outcome for every situation.  I figured that at the very least,  I could be prepared for the worst to happen.   Sadly, still today, if something goes wrong, my brain jumps to the bad things that could happen.  If my husband is late coming home, maybe he was in an accident.  When I lost my job I just knew we’d be homeless and he’d stop loving me.   Hell, as I write this I just know you all will think I’m batshit crazy, a freaking basket case, and none of you will talk to me again.  Or that you’ll pity me, treat me differently because I’m mental.

Through it all, I’ve found solace through my art. It’s the one thing that lets me be completely present.  Very little quiets my mind like putting on a horror movie and picking up yarn and a hook or needles.  My glasses off, work close to my face, creepy horror movie music in the background, I usually find peace quickly.  I think it’s why I get a bit sad at the end of a project. I worry, for half a second, that I won’t have another one to work on, and my peace will be gone.  Which is why my “things I want to make” list is so long.   In my eternal busy-ness,  I find the peace I can’t get otherwise.  In keeping busy, I can quiet my mind, and less of the negative filters through. I know that’s not how things are supposed to work, but it’s definitely how it works for me.  Also, my husband tells me, usually while I’m crying , that everything is going to be alright… I love that.  Even though they’re just words, when he speaks them, I believe them.  I can’t tell myself  everything will be ok…I never believe me.  Even though things are alright, I’m not dead and naked in a field with my entrails out, I still can’t believe me when I try to tell myself it will be ok.

Wow…this has to be the most depressing post you’ll read all week. Sorry about that. And I won’t hold it against any of you if you never read my blog or talk to me on facebook again.  It’s ok… I’ve never been brave, or strong, but this felt necessary to put out there, hopefully a bit healing.  I feel lighter than I have in days. I’ve also cried, which usually helps.     So if you take anything from this, please, don’t YOU worry, everything will somehow be ok.   I have it on good authority from my husband, and he’s right, though things seem a bit dark, everything still is ok.