February 22, 2011

Spiritwood Music - Meet Pat and Donna Surface from Ely, MN

Donna and Pat Surface
Sigurd F. Olson was the Bard in the North woods of Ely, MN. Also keeping up with this tradition is Pat and Donna Surface of Spiritwood Music in Ely, MN. Like Mr. Olson, Pat writes with depth and feeling, but Pat can sing and play guitar as well.  The Surface duo team is quite inspirational as Donna is a Performance Artist in Sign for The Hearing Impaired. Donna teaches basic signs during performances. Pat’s North woods music adds a spiritual tone which he calls “Canoe Grass”, including Folk, Bluegrass, Swing, Celtic, Gospel and more. According to Donna; “Pat’s primary instrument is his amazing voice, he plays guitar and is a songwriter.” 
Donna-Performance Artist in Sign
Donna went to college in New York City for art originally, but decided to study dance as it had been a love of hers since the age of three.  She studied acting and followed her passion to London.  Donna became a professional actor in New York where she performed on stage, film, and TV for 10 years after returning from London.  She became very interested in body building after a car accident injury and ultimately was nationally ranked as a “Body builder.” Donna went back to college for fitness, and is certified by the American College of Sports Medicine as a Health/Fitness Director. In addition to her accomplishments, she is a published author and wrote a book called “Burn Fat for Fuel.”  Donna moved to South Florida and swore she was” Going to die under a palm tree and never see another winter.” It was in Florida where Donna first met Pat and she never thought she would be seeing snow again.
Pat was abandoned to the foster care system and finally adopted at the age of 3 and raised in Grand Rapids MN. He is called the “Gentle giant” as he stands 6ft, 8 inches tall and was a college all-star basketball player.  When did Pat discover the artist in him? The LaPlants (on his mother’s side) are award winning musicians and instrument builders. It was through their inspiration that Pat found his passion for music. Pat also draws inspiration from God, Family and God’s creation, The Boundary Waters Wilderness Area.  Their website is incredibly dynamic, you can listen to music and select by genre, artist, title etc. and read their full biography. Give a click on this link before you continue and see what I mean. www.spiritwoodmusic.com  They also promote their music at art and music festivals around the country and sell CDs and DVDs at concerts.  In addition to this they have hundreds of specialty shops around the country that sell their CDs.
Huge crowds line the streets
Donna and kids signing
Pat and Donna have lived in Ely, MN with their son Trevor for 12 years and built their own home and named it Spiritwood. A name so powerful that Pat established  his business and named it Spiritwood Music in 1997. It has always been the wilderness and nature of Minnesota that has inspired much of Pat’s music. Pat's popular band, the Boundary Water Boys, is a group of accomplished musicians blending fiddle/violin, dobro, guitars, bass, acoustic drums and harmonies - all augmenting Pat's celebrated voice. Pat's dobro player has won 2 Grammy Awards and has been nominated 5 times. Pat's fiddle player is Minnesota Instrumentalist of The Year. Pat has won several awards, including The Telly. Their recordings are a world class collection of classic folk and original tunes done in their signature fusion style. In addition to several recordings in the folk genre featuring Pat and his guitar, Pat and the Boundary Water Boys have recorded numerous albums showcasing their eclectic blend of genres. Something for everyone. Huge crowds attend their concerts in Ely, so many that the City closes the street when they perform. Pat has traveled throughout North America and performed for schools, colleges, churches, festivals and benefit concerts. He has reached over twenty million people and sold over 300,000 albums.
In 2007, Pat and Donna launched their own non-profit organization which support the quest to conquer Alzheimer‘s Disease after Donna lost her father Rocco Michael Passaretti  to the disease. It is called the “Forget Me Not” Foundation.  Please visit www.spiritwoodfoundation.org  where you can make a tax deductable donation to help fight this disease. Every 71 seconds someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer's Disease.
Apart from their own non-profit organization they also support many in the local community by doing benefit concerts including:
The North American Bear Center- (tribute song written by Pat- Makwa Manido)
The Northwoods Research Center-(tribute song written by Pat –Bear Walker-One Step at a Time)
The Will Steger Foundation-(tribute song written by Pat- Strength of Will)
Listening Point Foundation- Sigurd F. Olson
Dorothy Molter Museum- Root beer  Lady of the BWCA
International Wolf Center
St. Joseph’s Catholic School in Grand Rapids MN (Pat’s school growing up)
I had a few questions for this wonderful couple:
What is the most significant decision you ever made? “Choosing a Christian path, and leading with our Christian faith to become husband and wife”
What makes you laugh the most?  Donna says: “My husband-hysterical punny punsmith!!! He was born to pun, and Pat says I make him laugh as well.”
Who is your favorite musical artist? “Kermit the Frog- the Amphibian American artist.”
If you won a million dollars, what would you do with it? “We would donate a portion of it to the “Forget Me Not” Alzheimer’s non-profit foundation, help family and go fishing.”

Cunga line
What words of advice would you have for someone starting out? “Stay true to your soul; take the art form seriously, but separate art from the artist. This is a tough business; you will be loved and then treated with indifference. But when you receive your affirmations pay attention as this is your message, your compass. Have quiet time to receive this guidance. If you stay in the belly of the beast you are literally consumed and your creativity is severely diminished. Accomplish something every day!

February 17, 2011

Lifelike Pet Portraits Artist Janine Kyarsgaard

Janine Kyarsgaard Pet Portrait Artist

Self Portrait
Janine Kyarsgaard is a lifelike pet portrait artist. She lives in Blaine MN, with her husband and “Kids” Tuff the Pug and Luna the cat. Her pet portrait work is “Realism, but I don’t worry about drawing or painting each and every hair. I enjoy using implied detail as much as carefully rendered detail to capture the true character an expression.” 
Janine’s passion is in her “Family genes” so to speak, as her Dad and Aunt on her mother’s side are/were both talented in visual arts. “I am formally trained in illustration, worked in the field briefly, and then stopped making art when “Real life” got in the way. After a 5 year dry spell the urge to create overtook me, so here I am making art again with the ultimate goal of becoming a full-time professional artist.”
Janine draws her inspiration from her own pets. She says; “They have such great personalities that I love to capture.  They can be such natural posers, however many times by the time I grabbed the camera they move! I am also inspired by everyday objects, the way the light will hit a plant, or silverware on a counter… just about anything can be inspiring if we take time to really look at it.”
Janine earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Minneapolis College of Art & Design.  She started with pastel far earlier than that, maybe around age 12 or 13. “My Dad helped me a lot; I remember him telling me some people had trouble drawing hands, or were afraid to draw them and I should look at my own hands for reference. Mostly it is practice, practice, practices. Her favorite animals to draw are “Lots of dogs and cats of course. Horses, wolves and big cats are full of beauty and majesty, but I often find that when I’m looking for something to draw I’ll choose a bird.”
How do you come up with your ideas?  When I don’t have a commission to work on, I like to look for images at the Wet Canvas Image Library http://wetcanvas.com/RefLib/.  It’s an amazing resource for artists!  I also keep a list of ideas to work on when I have time, so I might refer to that when I’m looking for a project.  I enjoy puns, so those are another source for ideas, for example Pugsy Siegel http://4pawsterity.com/gallery/item/352/asInline and Canine Miranda http://4pawsterity.com/gallery/item/353/asInline
What skills do you find essential in your work? “Since I do portrait commissions, communication is the key. I need to be available to my clients, clear expectations- theirs and mine and open and accommodating to their wants and idea.”
How often do you work? “I make a concerted effort to work every day. Even if I don’t have a portrait on my easel, I work on pieces for my gallery and prints. Or even just painting exercises to learn new media and still keep my skills nimble…I’ve started a daily artwork blog to keep me accountable to create every day, even it it’s just a quick sketch.”
Where are you currently showing your art pieces? “I have been included in the Minnesota State Fair Fine Arts exhibition in 2010, otherwise my work is primarily commissioned work in private collections. I have been researching juried art shows in a variety of galleries across the country. Stay tuned!”

Are you currently holding workshops or art classes? “I am not. Teaching does not come naturally or easily to me, so even though that is common activity for artists to supplement their income, I don’t see it on the horizon for me.”
Who is your favorite artist? “That’s difficult, there are and were so many… Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Degas, Escher,  Frazetta … just for starters.”

What is the most significant decision you ever made? “It’s more like a decision I didn’t make: I didn’t do nearly enough to promote myself just after college.  I ended up with my eggs in one basket, so when work dried up in one area I wasn’t prepared and I ended up seeking out “day jobs.”  If I had stuck with it, I may have been making art as a career for years already!  I try not to think about that with regret, though, since that’s not very useful.  Instead I use it as a reason to keep working at it now.
What is your favorite season in Minnesota and why? “Autumn.  My ideal weather is about 60 degrees and rainy, and I love going for a walk on a rainy fall day, when the brightest foliage seems to glow through the gray and damp.  The rain makes everything smell fresh and earthy!”

If you won a million dollars, what would you do with it? “Invest wisely to life off it, and spend my time making art and enjoying time with friends and family.  Any profit made from my work at that point would be donated to animal causes with maybe a little kept for “fun money.”
What makes you laugh the most? “I like British comedy, plus parodies and spoofs.  I also enjoy sort of dark or twisted comedy.  In general I try not to take life too seriously.”
What words of advice would you have for someone starting out?
Always keep in mind your target clients and ways to show them your work.  I’ve always believed in the saying “Luck is being prepared for opportunity;” act as if your next big client is just around the corner.  Most important is probably to be persistent and patient.”
Janine creates truly wonderful and thoughtful gifts for any occasion or simply to remember a loyal companion. Please visit her website at www.4pawsterity.com

February 14, 2011

Lottie's Trinkets - Meet Lise Spence-Parsons

Lise Spence-Parsons of Lottie's Trinkets
Lise Spence-Parsons is owner and creator of Lottie’s Trinkets. I had the good fortune to meet Lise at a recent craft show where she told me I had an “Accent. “  Lise specializes in unique, handmade jewelry, designed with quality semi-precious stones, glass, Swarovski crystals and pearls.
Lise is originally from the London area in the UK and relocated to the United States in 2002 for her husband’s work. (She has s bit of an “Accent" herself)  She says; “I am from an artistic family on my paternal side and most members of my family have an artistic passion of sorts.” Her family is small, with a sister and mother in the UK and some close family in Sweden.  Her husband’s family is small as well and also live in the UK , they are the only two that moved to the US.
Lise currently resides in Maple Grove, MN with her husband and two kitties. She spends most of her time at home doing domestic things and also running her business, which has been trading successfully since 2005. She says; “I use one of the rooms in the basement as my “Studio” and “Lottie Trinkets” headquarters. I dream of having a real studio and/or shop to make and sell my work, we shall see.”
Lise likes to call herself an “Art Jewelry Designer” she says; “ I work hard at developing my ideas and try to push boundaries just a little. I generally stick to necklaces, bracelets and earrings. I enjoy using all sorts of materials in my work and really enjoy recycling old antique and vintage beads and findings and make something new for someone to enjoy.”She describes her style as “European” and states “You can take the girl out of London, but you can’t take London out of the girl.”  She adds, “I would say I am eclectic and experimental with style and color combinations. To me it’s all about form, function and design. Each piece I design must be balanced in all aspects before it goes out for general review and sale.”
Garnet rings
Sweet Treat
Lise’s artistic talents have always been “Lurking inside of her and burning to get out.” She recalls, “Some of my earliest memories are of myself are drawing, coloring and making things fit together. One of my best presents ever was a package of color cards and a pot of cow gum (glue) and a pair of scissors…..joy!”  She shared with me that she never formally studied art and merely followed her family’s art forms being practiced from painting and photography, to fashion design and music and that it is all second nature.  Lise was an accountant for 17 years in London and “The artist” did not escape until they came to the US to live. She became interested after attending a class with a friend where she learned to wire wrap beads. She said;”I knew I was hooked and Lottie’s Trinkets was born 3 months later.
Vintage Wood
I asked Lise where she draws her inspiration from?  “Inspiration comes in many guises, sometimes so subtle you don’t even realize it. However, most of my ideas come from reading books, I imagine a character wearing a certain item…sometimes it’s TV or on the street, you see someone wearing an item and think “yeah, I could use those beads I bought…”
Her ideas for her actual design of a piece can take a long time. “I like to lay the beads out and walk away, come back and look again, move some around and then take or add some others.  I can make pieces up and later break them down again to tweak as it does not hang correctly or the colors are wrong for each other.”
What skills have you found essential in your work?  “Skills required in my work are infinite, as I run my own business I am the designer, maker, supplies purchaser, marketer, accountant, booth agent, salesperson etc. However, one skill I have found invaluable is patience…it can be applied to all of the disciplines above. Another is to have a humor and be prepared to laugh at yourself.”
Sunburnt Blueberries
How often do you work? “I try to work most days, probably 30% of my time is designing and making the pieces, the remainder is looking/shopping/sourcing antique malls for supplies, book-keeping, locating and applying for art fairs and then general administration.”
Have you worked with any organizations to further your career as an artist? “I actually do volunteer my time to local charity groups for special needs kids in the metro area. I teach jewelry making for about 16 girls for a few Saturdays and other days throughout the year. This is my 5th year of doing this and I find it very rewarding and the girls love it!”
What advice can you give people just getting started? “This is a hard life and not an easy fix; do not expect results, sales/profits immediately. All art forms are competitive, but jewelry design is one of the most oversubscribed.  You have to be different, your designs unique and you must live the passion.”
If you won a million dollars, what would you do with it? “After doing all the normal family things, I would travel the world and experience different cultures. I’ve traveled a lot in my life so far and there is nothing that expands my mind more. I would also invest in myself and get that studio/shop and make my dreams come true?”
Lise ‘s website is www.lottietrinkets.com   it is linked to PayPal to facilitate payments. She also sells the same items on http://www.artfire.com/users/LottiesTrinkets and http://www.madeitmyself.com/user/lottiestrinkets.aspx

February 13, 2011

Happy Valentines Day from Creative Chicks Cafe

Have a "Chick Loving Day"

February 11, 2011

"Group Workshops for Creative Women"

Recently, I have received some emails wondering if we are still having  the "Creative Chicks Workshops".  Well,  the answer is yes. We're still busy creating and crafting!  I've also been asked "What is a Creative Chicks  Workshop"? To answer that,  it is a group, mostly women, who gather together, to share in all that artsy, crafty fun.  I began my workshops years ago, a friend asked if she could come over and work in my studio, then another friend asked, and another and another.  Before you knew it I had a "Creative Community" right in my own backyard. These workshops are an informal way for us to create in a relaxed and positive environment.  We are all excited by what everyone is working on.  There's plenty of talking and sharing.  Occasionally, we'll have an organized art or craft project.  Someone will come in, bring materials and show everyone how make something or they teach their own special techniques.  This is really fun because at the end of the day we all have the same project, but... none of them are the same, if you know what I mean! 

So if you would like to host your own "creative workshop".  Here are a couple of ways you can do this.  Keep in mind you don't have to have a full art studio.  Your workshop can be in the comfort of your living room or if weather permitting, go out into your backyard or patio. You can either have them bring a a project they are already working on or you can really get people sharing and talking by having them all create the same project. Encourage everyone to bring a dish to share and maybe a cool beverage.

Project #1 - Plastic tote bags
 Here's a neat way to use those plastic bags you get from the grocery store.  Have everyone collect their bags and bring them to the workshop.  Place all the bags in the middle of the table and let each person pick what colors they would like their  bags to be.  Then cut the bags into strips to make the "yarn" and crochet away.

Project#2 - Beaded Bracelets   Have each guest bring a variety of beads.  At least 50 different beads ranging from glass to silver or any really pretty ones they find.  There is a large selection to pick from at your local craft store.  You can also have your guests bring some charms to personalize their bracelets , clasps and any bead making tools they may have.  Things you'll need to have on hand are beading wire, crimping beads, magazine clippings of pieces of jewelry for inspiration and project instructions.
So there you have it! Thanks for visiting the Creative Chicks Cafe'.  And, I  hope I've inspired you to host your own crafting party.  And as always, your feedback is always appreciated. -Kate

February 10, 2011

Wow.... I know you are all waiting for our usual Thursday post......But..... You'll have to wait one more day. We had our "open workshop" all day and then my granddaughters kindergarden school play tonight and I don't have anything ready to post. Please check back tomorrow and I promise you wont be disappointed! In the meantime you can go back in the archives. We have had so many interesting things to talk about over the last eleven months, and if there's a favorite please leave us a comment below. Happy reading!-Kate

P.S. I have a little secret, a blog that is not yet announced! Jenny, yes Jenny our "Internet guru" is getting married and we started a blog about her wedding. Simply go to www.jennyandrobedwards.blogspot.com to see more! Let us know what you think!

February 7, 2011

Our First Craft Show as a Vendor

Patty Sullivan and Pam Vincent
On Saturday, my sister Pam and I attended our very first craft show as a vendor. It was held at the Maple Grove Community Center in Maple Grove, MN.  We wanted to take our first “Crafting baby step” to not only see how much work was involved in doing a show , but wondering if our “Stuff” would even sell.  So, here is our story and for you seasoned craft show people out there, you may even get a chuckle from our experience.  We both had a sleepless night making sure we had everything packed and ready to go. What if the alarm clock did not go off? Better set two alarms for a back up. Where will our booth be, and what crafters will be there?  Our husband’s  were so supportive and were just as excited as we were to have a successful day. They helped us unload the vehicles and found our spot #23 taped on the floor.   

There it was our 10x8 piece of carpet to create and build our home and live in for the next eight hours.  The adrenaline boost was exhilarating as we set up our tables, put on the tablecloths and began to unload our containers.  It was a mad frenzy all around us we were so pumped to get everything ready so we could see who all was there. (Note to self: Do not wear a fleece top or turtle neck and sweatshirt while assembling  your booth or you will lose 10 pounds from sweating.)
We did it, we set our booth up within 45 minutes, and then spent 10 minutes moving things around, stepping back and re-checking it again. Yes, it was time for an open house at address #23 and we were ready for business. Both husband’s were so proud us and of course pictures had to be taken and then a kiss to thank them and off they went.
There were 50 booths, about half were handmade crafts.   Even though there was not a lot of traffic, at the end of the day, Pam sold 4 of her dried flower creations, and I sold 16 of my cotton washcloths.  The social aspect of the event was priceless, as we met so many people who were either beginners like us, or seasoned show attendees. Our customers were so complimentary of our work and it was nice knowing that our hard work paid off.

Roger Freind, sister Rose Mullenbach and Dad

These are a few of our neighbors who had the most visitors at their booth. Roger Freind made “No-Sew” fleece throw blankets.  Roger was supported by his sister Rose and his father.  I purchased a blanket for my new niece to give to her for her birthday.
Irene Simonson
Irene Simonson created cozy beds to spoil your pets, she call them her “Cuddle Bud Beds” Her website is www.petpizzaz.com
Randee Ward
Randee Ward was a big hit with her recycled and elegant flattened bottles  and decorative wine glasses. You can reach her at randeeward@yahoo.com

Michelle Ritacco and Cathy Sportelli
Michelle Ritacco and Cathy Sportelli owners of Music Designed for Kids. They create personalized CD’s and DVD’s for children.  Check their site out a

Grandpa Jim
“Grandpa Jim “Wright sold homemade Maple Syrup tapped from the trees of Frederic Wisconsin at the Wilderness Fellowship Ministries camp. All proceeds go to support their efforts at www.wildernessfellowhip.com 

Brenda Stanton
Brenda Stanton is owner and creator of Driving Force Energy. I enjoyed sampling  her all natural, no preservative popcorn and energy bars. Brenda has very unique flavors and can be reached at www.drivingforceenergy.com
Pam and I rate our first experience as a  A+. We met so many nice people that were so passionate about what they create.  We were a sponge absorbing information and sharing what we have learned as well. We want to thank our family, friends and spouses for their support. We were inspired by our ladies at Creative Chicks Café to take that first step and attend our first craft show as a vendor.

February 3, 2011

The Definiton of Inspiration is....

The Definition of Inspiration is:  Some body or something that inspires somebody to creative thought or to the making of art.
Here is a story on inspiration, it’s about a woman who endured a mid-life change last summer and I am not referring to “PMS”.  She lost her long time job due to downsizing and all of the “social” aspects of interacting with the work people as well.  Let’s face it, when she started talking to her cat all day and expecting the cat to answer back, she had hit rock bottom.   My name is Patty Sullivan, I am that woman and for the first time on Creative Chicks Café, I am actually writing a story about “me”.  Kate Sullivan is my step-daughter, she calls me “Step Mommy” and we are 4 years apart in age.  I married her father  Joe five years ago and I have known them both for 25 years.  Joe is my life, and Kate is my best friend.
It was time for “Social Intervention” looking for jobs all day long became maddening and I fell into a “Recession Slump”.  Kate was blatantly honest with my situation and steered me on the road to recovery to assist me with my down time. I went through a Five Step Social Recovery process “FSSRS” which is:
Facebook, Start my own blog, Software training, Re-defined my talents, and Social Interaction.
On October 10, 2010 I joined Creative Chicks Café and when I read the definition of “Inspiration” I knew that I was cured. Here is my blog site if you want to know more about me
 www.patty-sullivan.com  if I had more people leave comments I would feel like someone cared.
  In all seriousness, when we speak about “Social Networking” it is not only finding balance in your work life, but with your family and friends.  These are the people “Who have inspired something or somebody to creative thought or to the making of art”. These are the people I have connected, inspired, shared and learned from at Creative Chicks Café since I joined.
Carmen Bengtson and Baby JERK Jesse

 Carmen Bengston  -started her blog at Christmas called “Mama’s JERKS  http://mamajerks.blogspot.com  Carmen is my nephews wife, she never says much in person, but boy her writing is fun to read. My sister and I convinced her it would be therapeutic for her, and now she blogs every day.

Sheila Wayne (in blue) attending Mecca's workshop

Mecca Manz
Mecca Manz- an artist, started her first Creative Workshop in her home studio and fulfilled her dream . Shelia Wayne introduced Mecca and George to  Kate and I.
Sheila Wayne- owner of The Underground Art Gallery “Art to Sea”, not only shared her gallery with us, but also attended Mecca Manz first workshop

Ronnie Walter

Phyllis Chism
 Phyllis Chism – creator of Diva Dolls placed her business on Facebook. I met Phyllis at a craft show in January.

Jenny Patterson
 Ronnie Walter- of “My Friend Ronnie” shared her success as illustrator and designer of greeting cards. Ronnie is Kates neighbor.
Sandy Sander and husband Richard
Jenny Patterson- of “Quilted in Clay” provided tools to help people just staring out doing shows. I met Jenny at the Cantebury Craft Fair in April.
Emily Dingmann
Sandy Sander- shared her “Memory Wall”, and has her crotched blankets on consignment in a local shop. I also heard she is making cotton washcloths. Sandy is my “older sister” she hates when I say that.
Sandy Nardozzi
Emily Dingmann –creator of “A Nutritionist Eats” continues to share her health and nutrition recipes. I met Emily while taking a computer class.

Jim Rasmussen
Sandy Nardozzi- from Bath Maine shared her New England Pumpkin pie recipe with us. We want more recipes Sandy. Sandy is my husband’s friends wife.

Pamela Vincent
Jim Rasmussen- of “Rasmussen Photography” the guy is so busy traveling to shows, we are still waiting to feature him. I met Jim through Mona Rae Cich. Kate met Jim at the Cape Coral Art Festival.
Mona Rae Cich
Pamela Vincent- of “Pamela Vincent Creations” shared with us all her pressed flower creations. Pam created a website, a blog, and her business on Facebook. She has her first craft show on February 5th. Pam is my twin sister and she got the gifted gene.

 Mona Rae Cich- of “Hidden Talents” not only shared her fascinating story, but has been a mentor, a dedicated fan, and an advocate for Creative Chicks Café. She likes the LIKE button in Facebook, and we like that. I met Mona Rae at the Cantebury Craft  Fair last  November.

Kate Sullivan
Kate Sullivan- creator of Creative Chicks Café and artist. She continues to inspire women to create at her North and South Studios. Thank you ladies for your dedication to learn and create.  Kate is a “Teacher of all Arts” and one of the most talented women I have ever known. She amazes me with her God given talents. Thank you Kate for your “Chick on the street” reporting of craft shows, events, recipes and how to make things. Without your dreams of building a website to help women connect with one another, I would have never met so many wonderful people.  Oh, I married Kate’s Dad.

Jenny Fasching

Jenny Fasching- who is this person? She is Kate’s daughter and has been instrumental in designing our blog, logo, and starting our business site on Facebook.  Jenny is my step-grandaughter.
These are people that I know, have met, wrote to, wrote about or read about on Creative Chicks Café.  They are the true definition of “Inspiration”.  We have a new year ahead of us and I am counting on all of you to help us grow our fans on Facebook, and our hits on our blog to help tell our story. Please tell your friends about us, and for goodness sake, leave comments on our blog and facebook because I need someone to talk to.

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