Creations by Kaitlin

Everyone loves a girl with flowers in her hair.

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LCH Fund-Raiser Update *

Posted by kmhanc01 on July 28, 2014 at 5:10 PM Comments comments (0)

Hi all :)


As many of you know, I create and sell non-profit Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis (LCH) bracelets. I donate 100% of all proceeds to the Histio CURE Foundation -- which, in turn, gives 100% of those donations directly to Histiocytosis research and funding. Thanks to all of your donations and involvement in my fundraising, we have officially donated $220 to the Histio CURE Foundation, as well as several hundred dollars to the Histiocytosis Association.


I want to extend a big *THANK YOU* to everyone who has made an impact in this fundraising -- I appreciate it more than you know! Here's to hoping more Histiocytosis research occurs!


For questions regarding the LCH bracelets, please e-mail me directly at kmhanc01@gmail.com


-Kaitlin

Red, White & Blue

Posted by kmhanc01 on July 27, 2014 at 4:40 PM Comments comments (0)

Hello, hello!


In the 6th grade, our teacher assigned us a project to create an american flag. While most of my classmates simply colored their flags on pieces of paper or posterboard, I wanted to do something different. Being the creative little girl that I was, I came home from school and was determined to make an Ameircan flag out of sticks. My mom simply laughed and didn't think it would be possible -- how you could take sticks and turn it into a flag?? I, however, had a vision that no one else quite saw. Thanks to the help of my lovely mom (let's be real, I was entirely too young to use cutting tools), I collected and cut 13 sticks. Once the "shape" was created, I added some paint, and created an American flag! -- And got an A+ on my assignment, of course :) YAY!


For years since, that same flag hung on a wall in our home and collected a heck of a lot of dust. A few years ago I cleaned it off, got it looking like new again, and listed to sell it on my Etsy page. And wouldn't ya know, I sold it to a customer in California THAT SAME DAY! Ever since, I have been creating and selling flags to customers around the country, as well as in my hometown of Louisville, Kentucky. Who would have thought my 6th grade assignment would be such a great hobby of mine at 24 years old!?


Listed below are a few recent photos! To purchase your very own flag, visit  https://www.etsy.com/listing/153593497/wooden-american-flag-wall-hanger?


Everyone loves a little red, white & blue!

-Kaitlin



"Soak it all in. It's a game you can't win. Enjoy the ride."

Posted by kmhanc01 on November 17, 2013 at 5:45 PM Comments comments (0)

In the midst of a gloomy November day filled with studying and job-hunt stress, I needed to find a positive pick-me-up. Whenever I'm feeling stressed, I go straight to one of three things: 1) driving through the country and stopping to pet horses, 2) paiting, or 3) music. Due to the current tornado warning (Yes, a tornado in November, WHAT!?...), option 1 isn't quite possible. My go-to music pick-me-up is Zac Brown Band's "Quiet Your Mind" -- a song with great music and even more powerful lyrics (**link provided below**).


It is easy to focus on negativities that are out of our control. Far too many times in my life I've done just that. However, I've been trying to do as this song suggests: accept things that are out of my control, and enjoy the ride as it comes. By wishing things away, you waste certain aspects and lessons of life. So, as Zac Brown says...


"Soak it all in. It's a game you can't win. Enjoy the ride."


-Kaitlin



http://youtu.be/qGS8wIOVwwk


I hear the waves
Sun beatin' down on my shoulders
It's a near-perfect day
Wishin' I wouldn't get any older
They say that it's gone 'fore you know it now


Quiet your mind
Soak it all in
It's a game you can't win
Enjoy the ride


I feel the change
Goin' on all around me
It's strange
How I'm taken and guided
Where I end up right where I'm needed to be


Quiet your mind
Soak it all in
It's a game you can't win
Enjoy the ride


At the end of the water
A red sun is risin'
And the stars are all goin' away
And if you're too busy talkin'
You're not busy listenin'
To hear what the land has to say


Quiet your mind


I hear the waves
Sun beatin' down on my shoulders
It's a near-perfect day
Wishin' I wouldn't get any older
They say that it's gone 'fore you know it and
Soak it all in
It's a game you can't win
Enjoy the ride



"When you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears."

Posted by kmhanc01 on October 18, 2013 at 1:45 PM Comments comments (0)

After years of struggle -- for lack of a better word -- my family has overcome to what seems to be an endless battle. It's a funny thing when the ONE thing you hope and pray for actually comes true. Prior to its coming true, you dream up the moment in your head. For myself, I imagined this moment consisted of dancing, hugging, and celebration.


On Wednesday, October 16th, my one hope came true. My family received the positive news we have been waiting to hear for years. A few simple words spoken from a doctor have changed our entire world. The funny thing is... for myself; this experience can't be described in words. I am so, so grateful, but at the same time, I am almost afraid to accept the positive news. I keep thinking, "Okay, what's next?"


This phase of my life has me feeling grateful, as well as nostalgic. At what seems to be the end of an endless uphill road, I want to share with you all a few lessons I try to apply to my daily life now:


* Everyone is going through SOMETHING. What may seem like a minor hiccup to you may be someone else's world turning upside down. Don't be quick to judge others for this reason. Although it's easy to get caught up in moments of today's judgemental society, take a step back and think.

*Understand that life is not biased. Life happens to EVERYONE. Growing up, I never thought I'd be twenty-three and experiencing things I've become familiar with over the past few years. Stay humble and realize all that God has blessed you with -- even in moments of struggle and discord.

*Do things to make you happy. Life is too short to follow someone else's desires every day. Although it is important to maintain relationships, compromise, and go out of your way to do things for others, it is also important to do things for yourself. Find a balance.

*Be grateful. I cannot express this enough. Be thankful for all that you have. Every day. Pray not only for things you need help or guidance with, but also for things you are thankful for. When things appear to be going perfectly, it is in these times that what you have may go unnoticed.

I'm aware that this positive news is not the end of my struggle. Life is a constant struggle, but you cannot let that define who you are as an individual. I try to apply all I have learned, keep truckin' forward, and remember:

"When you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears."

-Kaitlin

Be GRATEFUL for what you have.

"Spread love everywhere you go" - Mother Teresa

Posted by kmhanc01 on September 30, 2013 at 6:20 PM Comments comments (0)

On Saturday, Sept. 28th, I participated in the 3rd annual Art in the Park, hosted at Brownsboro Park Retirement Community in Louisville, Kentucky. This was my second year participating as a vendor, and I'll definitely be returning again next year! Although I had many, many positive experiences this year, I'd like to share a very special one with you all.


A little over a year ago, I painted a galloping horse that was symbolic for my life at the time. The horse symbolized overcoming chaos and negativity while always looking towards the future. I painted this horse during a difficult time of uncertainty my family was experiencing, and it was almost a form of therapy for me. It was difficult for me to express my emotions with words, so I decided to express my thoughts on a canvas.


When Art in the Park rolled around last year, I was torn as to whether or not I should try and sell this particular painting. Although all of my paintings are special to me in certain ways, this particular one was very meaningful, and something I couldn't imagine parting with. At the very last minute, I decided to display my painting at my booth, and see if anyone asked to purchase it -- secretly hoping that no one would be interested. Right before I began to pack up my things to leave for the day, a certain young man walked by my booth a few times, glancing at my work. Finally, he stopped and talked to me.


He appeared extremely anxious, and I realized that he was actually involved with an art by autism booth at the fair. He quickly mumbled out that he wanted to buy my horse painting. With a decent-sized dagger to my heart, I agreed and accepted his payment. Before I wrapped it up and handed it to him, he nervously asked me what this painting symbolized and why I decided to paint it.


I was caught off guard. No one had ever asked me that question, and I was beyond happy that he took such interest in the purpose of the painting. Without going into the micro-details of my difficult time, I gave him the same vague explanation I previously shared with you all. I could tell that he was truly listening to what I had to say, and I know that he understood the symbolism the painting contained for me. The dagger was slowly removed from my heart, and I felt a sense of calm and connection to the man buying my painting. It was an awesome experience, and I will never forget it.


This weekend, at Art in the Park I had my eyes peeled for that same customer. And what do ya know? Right before I packed up my things to leave, he stopped by and bought another painting. I told him I remembered him from last year, and he gave me a quick, nervous smile. If only he knew just how much he impacted me that day. Seeing him this year for a second time was the highlight of my weekend.


By painting my love and emotion onto a canvas, I not only expressed my difficult emotions, but also passed the lesson learned from my difficult time on to someone else. Painting and "selling" my creations at art fairs can mean so much more than mere business. I will continue to paint with passion because, as Mother Teresa said:


"Spread love everywhere you go."


-Kaitlin





"Not until we are lost do we begin to find ourselves." - Henry David Thoreau

Posted by kmhanc01 on August 30, 2013 at 1:40 AM Comments comments (0)



As the result of spending more than enough years on the safe road, I developed a great desire to stay within the walls of my comfort zone. Due to some recent "not-so-great" situations, I realize that life is too short to be lived through a worrisome filter. Worrying is a quick way to get nowhere. I previously viewed caution as a tool to succeed in the future, but I now think of it as a bit of a curse. How are you going to grow if you don't push yourself? A few months ago I made a commitment to myself  to step outside of my comfort zone and get rid of my worrisome filter. Although my anxiety is often triggered when I find myself in uncomfortable situations (i.e. going to a movie alone, attending church by myself), I truly believe it has allowed me to grow as an individal. I now experience life through a more positive filter, and have discovered many things about myself. I feel more confident in my desires and my strength. Because of this, I now try to always follow my heart without worrying what others may think.

I urge you to step outside of your comfort zone (if I can do it, so can you! Lord only knows the walls to my comfort zone are made of steel and stand about 100ft tall). You may surprise yourself with the things you enjoy. Life is too grand to exist within your finite comfort zone. Explore yourself and your life, because, as Henry David Thoreau once said,

"Not until we are lost do we begin to find ourselves."

Now get out there and discover yourself!


-Kaitlin


"The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others." - Gandhi

Posted by kmhanc01 on August 27, 2013 at 5:10 PM Comments comments (0)

 

 

 

 

I have discovered firsthand that a life spent servicing a cause is a life worth living. When my mother was diagnosed with Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis (LCH), I felt so many emotions: anger, frustration, confusion, anxiety, and fear. After months of riding an emotional rollercoaster, I finally figured out a way to express myself and my experiences with LCH. I knew I wanted to dedicate some of my life to raising funds and awareness for this disease, but wasn't sure how. I developed a relationship with a few individuals at the Histio CURE Foundation, as well as the Histiocytosis Association (both are non-profit organizations for those affected by Histiocytosis). I eventually decided that I wanted to design a bracelet and give the proceeds to LCH research. I now sell these bracelets at a local boutique, as well as through my own website! Although this simple three-bead, adjustable bracelet is simple, it represents so much more. The three beads stand for the three letters: L, C, and H. For myself, personally, this bracelet is a representation of the struggle my family has endured for the past three years. I rarely take my bracelet off, and use it as a way to hold my mother (as well as all other LCH patients) close to my heart each and every day.


For myself, creating and selling LCH bracelets has added purpose and drive to my daily life. Discover your passion in life, and DO something to better the world - no matter how small that action may be. Because, as Mahatma Gandhi once said,


"The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others."

 

To order your own LCH bracelet, please contact me personally at kmhanc01@gmail.com


-Kaitlin

 

 

 

"Creativity is contagious, pass it on" - Albert Einstein

Posted by kmhanc01 on August 15, 2013 at 12:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Hello, hello, and WELCOME!

I am beyond grateful for the support of all my family, friends, and (most importantly) art lovers! For those of you who do not know me personally, let me introduce myself! I'm a born and raised Louisvillian, but don't let that fool ya -- I'm a diehard University of Kentucky fan! I developed a love for art at a very young age. I excelled in my art classes all throughout elementary and middle school, but pushed art to the side to pursue other extracurriculars in high school. I became re-introduced to my love of art in college when I became the Art Chair for my sorority, Kappa Kappa Gamma. My love for art was quickly sparked, yet again!

I spent much of my free time creating paintings for myself, as well as my family members. I quickly discovered art to be not only enjoyable, but also therapeutic. My artwork became my creative outlet and served as a way for me to express emotions that I couldn't quite communicate with words. My mother was diagnosed with a rare disease, Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis (LCH) in 2012, and I have relied on my creativity to not only deal with my emotions, but also to raise funds and awareness for the disease. I recently made a very big decision; a decision to combine two things I am passionate about: creativity and bringing light upon LCH. As a result, I have began hosting fundraisers, donating percentages of my artwork to the Histio Association, and designing/selling non-profit LCH bracelets.

Now that I am a college graduate, I am officially on my life path to success and happiness. I may not know exactly where I'll end up, but I DO know that I will apply my creativity and imagination to whatever career that may be. Although it is easy to become stressed about the unknown that is ahead of me, I find excitement in this "new chapter."

Well, there ya go! That's basically my life story summed up into three little paragraphs. I believe life is what you make of it, and it is all based upon your attitude. For someone who was once very negative, there is much to say about a life lived through a positive filter! In my short 23 years of living, I have found one thing to be true: Do what you love, and you'll find success along the way. Whether it be a career, relationship, or hobby, it is important to follow your heart and do what you enjoy.

Thank you for stopping by!! Now go out there and spread your dreams and imagination, because, as Albert Einstein once said, "creativity is contagious... pass it on."

-Kaitlin




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