All posts in CREATE

CREATE … creating garden seed kits with HALO youth

Recently, I had the pleasure of teaching a workshop at HALO, a great organization working with youth in the greatest need, that I’ve written about here before. For the workshop I brought in the Organic Garden Seed Kits and spoke to them about the entrepreneurial process of producing the kits for Anthropologie.  I explained how to assemble the kits for them to sell at their upcoming art auction to raise money for their art programming.  I brought my son Jack with me to help explain how to package seeds and other supplies to include in the kit. It was so rewarding for him and I was thrilled to expose him to this great volunteer opportunity. He mentioned 3 times on our 5 minute ride home how much fun he had! It was great to see the enthusiasm of these creative hands at work practicing with stencils and then stenciling the burlap bags. These youth have definitely inspired me to reach out of my comfort zone and they did a fantastic job creating the kits… so proud of them!! I’m so happy to have found this amazing local organization to volunteer with that helps so many youth in need, both locally and internationally. Find out more about HALO’s upcoming auction and ways to support them in their mission to empower youth.

HALO  Kansas City ArtReach Auction Feb, 27th 2015

Donations for HALO youth and programs


Getting ready to set up for the workshop

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Practice work on a variety of fabrics


photos courtesy of Aubony Chalfont, HALO Center Facilitator | view a HALO blog post about the workshop here. 


HALO believes in their youth and, like a family, they want the children they help to know that they can count on them for a lifetime. To show your support consider this great T-shirt that showcases this “I BELIVE IN YOU” movement.

I’ve also had the opportunity recently to meet Lindsey Platt, a HALO International Ambassador for the HALO homes in Uganda. She was here in Kansas City and spoke about her role as HALO Ambassador. She has such deep admiration for the youth that she’s caring for and is so passionate about empowering them to succeed. She instantly saw a need for tutoring for some of the students waiting to start school and initiated a tutoring program. The work she is doing is truly admirable and if you would like to follow her journey, take a look at her HALO blog here as well as her personal blog.

HALO was recently chosen to be included in a series of short documentaries called Inspired by Women, directed by Bryce Dallas Howard and sponsored by Moroccan oil. Take a look at their video below.

I’m so blessed to be involved with such an empowering group. Thanks HALO!

Enjoy the weekend!

- Julie

CREATE … sycamore bark art | a natural art canvas


Who needs paper when mounds of sycamore bark covers the backyard? If you’ve followed the blog for awhile you have probably seen this bark used in a variety of ways. It’s a FAVORITE natural medium of ours that falls from the branches of our sycamore trees and during our last storm it was covering the backyard. I have stashes of it waiting for new ways to incorporate it into projects and some extra special pieces I have displayed as their own objects of art. Something I find so endearing is that I will spot a little collection of it and then I’m told ” I was saving this for you mommy, do you want to keep it? “. They know it’s a favorite treasure of mine and they take it very seriously! I have made a sculpture with it here, and tucked valentine love notes in it here.



With this last collection we experimented by adding color to the bark and using stencils. Oil pastels seemed to work the best with the rough texture of the bark and next I think we’ll experiment with opaque watercolors and paint.







Enjoy this last bit of summer and if you spot any interesting bark near your house try using it as a canvas for art.


CREATE … bubble bombs | a simple experiment perfect for the 4th


It’s great to be home after a fantastic, but long, family road trip out west. We started out driving from Kansas City to Moab and explored Arches National Park (which is truly unbelievable) journeyed on through the desert, took a drive through Yosemite, connected with dear friends in California and hiked through the Calaveras Big Trees State Park.  It was an unforgettable adventure and will post more about our hikes soon.

In the meantime … This boy was cooped up in the car way too long and could not wait to make something the day he came home. We found this simple experiment he could do himself with a little assistance the first time. He had a blast and it’s much safer than a real explosive!! We moved it outdoors after mixing up the vinegar and water, because it indeed explodes. It’s perfect for the 4th and requires a few simple ingredients… vinegar, baking soda, plastic bag, and a paper towel.

Simple directions here for Bubble Bombs from Exploratorium. They have a great website that I’m anxious to further explore.

Have a happy and safe 4th of July!