Carmen Garcia - salome000
Burlington, NC
First of all, I have to say that there's NOTHING in the world that can shake one's confidence in their abilities like receiving the call to join the Dirty Dozen!

Don't get me wrong...the second I got the call, I was thrilled! I was doing the cabbage patch dance all over my craft room and then shaking my hips doing the MC Hammer 'Can't Touch This' thing! Seconds later, I was curled up in the corner, sobbing and saying "I can't do this, I can't do this...I STILL don't know how to use half the stuff I bought!! What is a 'gel medium' anyway?? Is it a glue? Where do I use it? Will it work in a hair emergency??? HOW does the Artist in Residence Dina use 400 colors on her cards and make it look fabulous when I use two and it looks like a pudding accident??? I hurt...could I have broken my hip doing the MC Hammer dance? Is that my kid running around outside without pants?? Again????"

Oops. Wait. That last one didn't happen. At least it didn't happen THAT particular day. But it does several times a week, at least.

If you haven't figured it out, I'm a little...um...what's a good word for it? Let's settle on 'eccentric'. I like that. And it's not a red flag on my medical record.

Like Grace, I live in North Carolina. In Burlington-or 'Bur-Vegas', as I like to call it. I'm 46 and 'semi-retired' (read: 'health problems' and 'no jobs') When I was 20, I fell into the world of radio and spent 25 in it. The last 10 were spent doing primarily talk radio. I never got to be famous, but I WAS the talk show host fill-in for Glenn Beck when we worked together at WFLA in Florida. He went on to make 50 million a year and I went on to make...well...cards. But hey...Glenn Beck might be all that, but I'm in the Dirt Pile! Take THAT, Glenn! wink

Like most of you, I have a husband, Henry, who is very supportive. It's not like he has much of a choice. But to be fair, if I'm not working happily in my craft room, I'm nagging him to death to fix something, so he looks at my spending as an investment in marital harmony and his golf game.

My 3 boys are Blake (15) Austin (10) and the pants-less wonder Liam(8). Liam is high-functioning autistic, which I suppose I could use as an excuse for raising the neighborhood streaker but, to be fair, who really wants to wear pants anyway?? My thighs have been joined at the top for so long that I'm convinced I'm turning into a mermaid. So I totally get this kid.

The boys, when they're not trying to kill each other with their bare hands, or conspiring against me, are pretty awesome and they make me laugh, when I SHOULD want to beat them half to death.

I truly am so excited to have been asked to join the Dirty Dozen. I picked up my first stamp in Dec. of 2012. I found Splitcoast about a month later and never looked back. I have never had an art lesson and I'm LITERALLY the person who couldn't draw squat. Go looks at my beginning cards in my gallery...I'm not kidding. The ONLY thing I had going for me was Splitcoast and my own persistence. I have a Calvin Coolidge quote called 'Press On' hanging over my desk (and at the bottom of this post!) and I take it to heart.

Spitcoast was a place I could grow my talent. I used the tutorials, made friends and-despite feeling like a total outcast (it took WEEKS before I found out what 'fussy cutting' was!) I was determined to make a commitment to this community and to myself. In these two years, I have grown immeasurably as an artist and a person. Whereas my communication with God was sporadic and mostly redundant before, my art has caused me to reconnect with Him and that's such an incredible gift!!

One last thing-I am MORE proud of being a Fan Club member than anything else. The first thing I did was join the SCS fan club. Sure, I didn't have to spend a whole 25 bucks a YEAR, when I could get most of it for free, but that's not why I did it. My joining the Fan Club was a commitment to MYSELF. I promised I would continue to learn and grow in what is becoming the happiest time of my life.

Sure...supporting the site is important and makes you feel good, but the commitment to yourself is what will pay off time and time again. I promise!

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you like my creations and my writing. Thank you to SCS for opening the door to a new life filled with the wonder of colors and textures and the encouragement to bring it from in my heart to paper, for all to see.

"Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan Press On! has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race."
― Calvin Coolidge

Read more: http://www.splitcoaststampers.com/gallery/photo/2570291#ixzz3GEIoJ0N2