Oh Life...

So today, I heard from a publisher, and he wants to hire me on for freelance book cover designs.  Which is pretty neat.  I just got my assignment for my 3rd book cover. Wee! All I know right now about this cover is the Lady is from Canada.  And I may have TWO designed covers sold at Barnes and Noble soon.  How awesome is that?!

I have also undertaken the role as Graphic Designer for the "Anna Arts Center," Heartland Council for Literacy, Arts, and Business in Southern Illinois.  I need to create logos, fliers, brochures, business cards... It is a big order, and I hope that I can pull through.  I bet I will end up being the web designer as well, as soon as I learn how to do that stuff.

The Anna Arts Center is a place where the lower area of Illinois can congregate about art and literature.  We will be offering various classes, these classes are going to be sponsored by Shawnee Community College, and the classes are going to be offered at half a college credit, to 1 college credit.  Which is really awesome.  They are donating some of the money that is made from the classes to the center.  I may get to offer my own classes for photography, as soon as I get my little dark room up and running... phew, a lot of work on my plate. Clubs are going to be able to meet here, After school programs are going to be created, and many many other things.

We eventually will be opening up an internet cafe/coffee shop to help bring in money for the Center.  But there is roof work to be done and many other things.  We have had many gracious volunteers to help us out.  But money is always an issue. So we are trying to come up with creative ideas to raise money for the major repairs that needs to be done on our building and other start up causes. We are going to have an Art Auction at the end of this month, and I think scheduled for next month, we will be having a wine and chocolate tasting event.

On January 31st we are having an ART AUCTION, selling artists work to earn money for start up costs, and repairs for the building that we just moved into.  I just talked with some of my old photo school colleagues, and they plan on donating some framed art for us to sell and possibly some jewelry from some of the Metal Smithing community.  I am so excited, I really think that it is going to turn out nicely. I really hope so anyway.

If you have any art that you want to donate, and think you can get it to me before next Friday, I would gladly and graciously accept any donations. 

Man, starting up a non profit organization is a lot of work.  It is hard to do things when you dont want to spend money that you dont have.

I need to print out some work, so that I can auction it off.  I really hope this brings in some money for us.  We really need it. You will probably get a very nice thank you note and be mentioned as contributors to our cause. 

If you want to donate any work and/or money(money can be sent any time:-p )

Send it with a note about yourself and your work to:

C/o: Amanda Urbanski
Anna Arts Center
125 W. Davie
Anna, Il 62906

A new Year

So, I havent updated in a long time.  I do want everyone to know that I am still watching and reading almost daily.  I just have lost my way.

2008, has been a year.  That is the only way I can describe it.  I have made friends and lost friends.  I have lived many different places and I have traveled.  

I started 2008 in Amsterdam watching the fireworks all around me and ended 2008 and started 2009 at a sandwich shop/bar in Southern Illinois called Booby's, with a kid who fell out of his chair, passed out drunk and puking behind me, while I talked to an ex-convict about movies we(me and my friend) should see.  I was a little busy trying to listen whether the kid behind me was ok, to hear what movies he was talking to us about. There were about 10 people max in the bar, Southern Illinois, a bit deserted during winter break.

After Amsterdam, I moved to Minnesota for a while.  It was a nice place.  I wouldnt mind living back there.  Certain things made me move.  I really miss the job that I had.  It didnt pay well, but it kept me interested in Photography.  I miss Photography. 

I moved to Champaign-Urbana, IL in August.  I thought it would be cheaper.  I thought I would get my act together there.  But the lifestyle that my roommate lived, and that I occasionally lived, was unhealthy, mentally and physically. I had to leave. 

Last month I moved back down to Southern Illinois.  I am living with my brother in a house, where the floors are slanty.  While living here... I plan on not having to pay rent, so I can save money.  I have also acquired a free apartment....

Lets start on a fresh line to explain the free apartment.

My mother, the same mother who is a writer.. The same mother who had a stroke a little over a year ago and lost the ability to create proper sentences and words, let alone a novel... well my mother, and her friends, has started a non-profit org. to bring arts to the southern Illinois area.  With this, they acquired an old police/community/fire station that they have turned into their headquarters.  In this building, there is an apartment.  It is for me.  As long as I fix it, and let me tell you, this is not a one day fix.  It needs a lot of work.  Things are never free. 

I am excited about this non-profit thing.  I get to teach photo classes. I get my own dark room.  I get an apartment! I also am there to be their graphic designer.  I am going to be designing their webpage and their buisnesscards and fliers and everything else under the moon(apartment, not so free.)
The building is sectioned off into 4 parts.  my apartment, the offices and on the other side is going to be a coffee shop and above it is an empty space.  Eventually I get to fix up that empty space and start a gallery (hopefully)  I think there may be a lot of promesing things in my future.

But I am happy with the coming choices that I have been making.  I get to see my family and my best friend more regularly, and i get to help out a community in need.  I am really excited and I hope to keep everybody updated on this stuff.

Other news... I created a book cover for one of the writers in this org. and I am told that it is going to be sold at Barnes and Noble!  My name... at Barnes and Noble!  Hopefully, things will continue with the book covers... the first one looked great, but it wasnt sold, and now this one... is being sold... hopefully, eventually I will be able to make my own books!!!!!!!
This is exciting. 

I have to find a job, to be able to pay the bills that I still have. There is a company next door to the buidling that employs special needs people.  And they need supervisors to supervise the special needs indeviduals.  I may apply for that.  I wouldnt have to drive, since it is right next door to where I will eventually be living.

the last year has been great, but exausting.  I have lost my way but I am trying to work back towards an ultimate goal.  First thing is first though, figuring out what that goal is.

I have a lot of things that I want to accomplish in this coming year.  I just need to remember to work slowly and I dont have to do everything at the same time.  Calm and steady.  It wins the race. or something like that.  I hope everybody is well!


I am sitting here at the bar in my Hostel that I am staying at. Travis is sitting at the bar chatting with one of the people we met. We have mainly just done a lot of walking, taking things in. WE have gone to see a couple movies and we have gone to the Rijks museum. That is where they house a large rembrandt collection of paintings. It was neat.

In the next couple of days we plan to hit the Van Gogh museum and Anne Frank's houdout place... I would spell out what it is actually called, but dutch is hard to read, speak and remember how to spelling the words is just not possible.

Most people speak english here, so getting around has been fairly easy. I feel guilty though, that I dont speaek thier language, I cant even say thank you in dutch, I am a horrible person, typical American. But I do make sure that I say a lot of please and thank yous and pardon mes...

We are looking into going to Paris and Berlin. We will finalize those plans tomorrow. I am excited to have a better memory of Paris than I have from a previous trip. I am excited to go to the Louvre and see the Eiffel Tower again. But I am especially excited to sit at a nice little cafe and drink a cup of coffee or tea ('thee'in dutch.)

An amazing part of Amsterdam is that when you go to the movies, they dont push huge bags of popcorn and soda on you. You can actually get a nice pint of beer or just a cup of tea. It is so nice to sit there with your little tea cup and enjoy a movie.

I dont think Amsterdam is for me though. A lot of people come over here for just the Weed, and so the defile the beautiful buildings that have existed for centuries. THere is graffitti everywhere. The bikes here are everywhere and they are all old. Everybody in Amstedam rides bikes. Which you would think would make things seem cleaner... but it just soemtimes seems to be a dump for old bikes. The trams and cars are crazy here. I cant tell when im on a road or a bike way or a tram trak or a sidewalk... I am constantly looking both ways, just in case I accidently step in front of a bike or a tram. It is terrifying to think that i can just... walk in front of a train. To kick this fear out of me I just imagine the conductors riding bikes under their front car that they are driving, so it wouldnt hurt so bad that they could run into me.

I am crazy, I dunno. Its 1:45 in the morning. I havent made any friends from other countries, but we have met a guy and have made good friends with... but he lives about 5 minutes away from us in St. Paul... crazy! His name is Jason, I am just putting his name in here, just for my reference. Because I cant remember names, its bad...

Oh with grades on my classes that i took this semester, I got all A's, which is nice. I have to start looking for assisting jobs once I get back to St. Paul. I have lived there for a week now. It is beautiful. I really enjoy it. My car on the other hand, I dont think, was made for driving in winter weather. It has its troubles as well. But I live within walking distance to all things important.

Anyway... trip... If we train over to france, we may take the train a little more south to visit our new friend Jason from Minnesota there.

We also have plans to go to Berlin. We found a Hostel. It is called "Dont Panic" and it is Hitch Hikers guide referencing all the way. We are excited to stay here. But we hope to get a room that will just be us two. Neither of us can handle sharing a room anymore. Its just annoying that you cant sleep without somebody banging their lugage aroudn in a cramped room.

Maybe when I am traveling on my own, I will be ok with staying with other people. But I am just looking for relaxation right now. We are going to a teeny hotel tomorrow. That will be nice. We should have our own shower and our own room. Small though, but you cant expect anything more when you are in europe.

The bathrooms are teeny... I dont think people who are much taller thna me can even use them, they are so tiny. Speaking of bathrooms... so they dont have porta pottys here... but they have outside plastic urinals for the Men,..... Not fair, what if girls need to take a wee. And I dont want an answer to that... Because I will not pull my pants down and try to angle myself into this strange urinal thing, which is really just a funnel attatched to a wall.

Anyway, I think this is enough documentation for the time being. I hope everyone has a nice new years. I will still be here in Amsterdam, and then we are going to head out of the stoner country for a while.

Have a good year!

(no subject)

Merry Holidays everyone!!!!!

I hope its great...

on my christmas, i have to sit on a stuffy plane for hours and hours.........

But then it will be great once we get to europe!!!!!
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    chipper chipper


I felt I would update.

I am living at home with my mom and her husband (the kids are at thier other grandmothers for a while.) She is doing better, I can sometimes understand a word that she says, but not really. Its a long road ahead. I am being "hired" as her Personal Assistant by the state, which is nice, because I have to quit walgreens, its too much for me. I have to drive my mom to her speech therapy meetings every day and get everything done that she would normally do during the day.

Its tough. This small town gets to me. I have no friends around. I am bored and sad a lot of the time. I dont let on to my mom because then she will get sad. But I seriously need to figure out a way to have some time to myself and or with people my own age.

In other news, my best friend Travis got an internship with Silicon Graphics in Minniapolis, its a paid internship. Its a paid internship that is paying him to work there for a year at the salary of 40,000. Its crazy, because its just an internship. I wonder what they pay their regular employees.

I am excited for him. I hope that my mom willbe well enough by september so taht I can go visit him. I really do miss him. This is teh longest amount of time that I have spent away from him for teh 2 whole years of knowing him.

anyway, gotta go to bed so I can start another fun filled day.


All because of a bag of sand... (twas a bomb scare)

SIUC Police Department are investigating a report of a suspicious package at
Lawson Hall. The building has been evacuated and closed until further notice.

As a precaution, evacuation is encouraged for Lindgren, Rehn, Wham and Life
Science II.
Please check with your BERT Team Leader or the Emergency Notification System
Radios for the "ALL Clear" to return to these buildings.

Will send email update when building is re-opened.


You have received this mailing because of your affiliation with SIUC. This
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Got this email today. I was in the building across the street. Apparently, Somebody had a demonstration today that involved a lot of sand, he didnt want to carry it around with him so he left it in the back of the room till his class started... A duffle bag of sand... well at least it canceled class for some.... I still have a big test tonight... oh no, my building is across the street, no need to evacuate us... we are safe over on this side of the tracks.
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    exhausted exhausted

(no subject)

You ask

"whats been happening, we havent heard from you"

I reply in non quotes...

I GOT A's!!!!!!

This semester hashad to been the hardest for me. And the best I have ever had.

The main class that I worked my butt off in was this senior portfolio class also known as applied photography. In the history of this class there has only been 1 A in the class for the last 2 years. And I got an A in it this semester. I cryed. I had been telling myself that my hard work was not enough for the A... I allowed myself to accept a C and then I got my grades back and I got an A... Shock.

Anyways, im finally back to being a photography major. For those of you who know me... this is an amazing feet.

And now as soon as I can officially say that I am a photography major instead of an Art major, I have applyed for graduation. I graduate in may, I applyed yesterday. I have 2 classes to finish and then I am done, finite...

I also found outthat I am one class away from an Art minor. Meaning I have to take 1 more art history class and then I am done. Which is exciting news. At least I will have something to show for my many years in Art.

For all of those disbelievers, it is so true. I am excited.

I get to be a Teachers Assistant for this crazy lady and her Studio Photography class. I am excited to help. I am also taking another class that I dont need, but am going to enjoy.

I am going to Las Vegas and San Francisco with 2 of my best friends for spring break and when August rolls around I will pack my belongings and head to San Francisco for a while. We are going to get an apartment over spring break. We have no idea where yet.

So overall, for all of those who I have ignored this past semester. Thank you. Thank you for not hating me.

anyways, Jen is in town visiting and I am off to lunch with her. Toodles for now.