Back Bone: KeepItHandmade 3/25 – 3/28 Artist Auction

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If you’re missing the thrill of going shopping due to quarantine and want to help artists and small businesses during these hard times, then I have treat for you!

I will have 6 of my creations up for bid in the Artist Auction taking place this week on Instagram from Weds. March 25th at 7pm CST – Sat. March 28th 7pm CST at @keepithandmade 

1 of my 6 items is a very special item and I have personally decided to donate all of my proceeds from this item to a dear friend of ours in need. I will post more details once the auction items are announced. At that time I will need everyone’s help with sharing the details to help raise as much money as I can.

Stay tuned this week and follow the @keepithandmade page for vendor and auction item announcements from all participating artists! Feel free to share this post as well to help get the word out about the auction.

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

Back Bone: Furry Friends

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My inner Deet gelfling essence has been in full swing lately! For those of you who are not Jim Henson geeks, stay tuned for a future post that will help make sense of what I just said and in the mean time just keep reading on…

Well, I am back at it again. I have donated another one of my handmade creations to a wonderful cause. This one being another online Instagram charity auction. This time I am re-joining forces with The Wishmasters Project to help raise money for Adelaide & Hills Koala Rescue who are doing wonderful things to help save the koalas from the bush fires in Australia.

The item I have donated is one of my limited edition Batty Skelerfly Barrettes with a starting bid of only $5.00!

Right now window shopping has begun on the Wishmasters Instagram page. This means that all the items that have been donated by artists and vendors are being posted to give people the chance to like and share them before the actual bidding opens THIS Friday, February 7th at 9pm EST..

Once the auction goes live you can then go to my item (and any of the other items) posted on their Instagram posts and bid (in $1 increments)! 100% of the proceeds from every item in this auction will be donated to the koala rescue. That is right. All of the artists and vendors who donated their items will not be making any profit from their items and creations so that we can raise the biggest amount possible for the cause.

So come join forces with us! Not only can you help by bidding on the items on Friday you can also help by bringing awareness to the auction. Go like the item posts, share the posts and even share this blog post with your connections and followers! Let’s save our furry little koala friends!

Now speaking of furry friends! A couple of weekends ago I got to enjoy a wonderful day date with my husband. We attended Wild Fest where we got to get up close and personal with some amazing animals rescued by various sanctuaries. I even got to pet quite a few of them. Here are a few photos from the event….

Since then I purchased an Incredible Bats shirt to help raise awareness for them. I am happy to know that the money I paid for the shirt will now go to some of those adorable new furry friends I made.

Stay Spooky & Supportive!
LDG Nicole

Back Bone: Keep It Handmade Animal Themed Auction

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As you all know I love to use my talents to help others in need. I was recently asked to take part in another Instagram Online Artist Auction. This one being a little different then the last as one item must be donated to help a feline friend in need. As a cat mom who has had to spend a lot of money trying to save her own furbabies I could definitely relate and immediately jumped on board.

So with all that said, if you are on Instagram please follow @keepithandmade I will have these 3 items in their upcoming animal themed #artist #auction starting Nov. 13th!

When the auction goes live, look for the special items with paw prints. Those are the items specifically donated by the participating artists to help raise money for kitty Peeta. Which means you can get some holiday shopping done while helping a great cause and supporting artists all at the same time! Win! Win! and Win!

See other ways I have used my artwork to give back in the Back Bone section of my portfolio website!

Stay Spooky & Supportive!
LDG Nicole

Back Bone: Team Rosie Update!

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I took this photo last year at my Uncle Randy’s birthday dinner. Little did we know it would be the last time we would all be together to celebrate with him. As you can see Rosie is front and center and he is smirking at her as my Aunt Mary holds up the cake as we all sang Happy Birthday to him. She always had a way to make him smile. 

I share this photo with all of you because this Friday would’ve been Uncle Randy’s birthday and ironically enough we have moved into the 1st place spot for the most money raised! What a wonderfully timed milestone. This is all due to your support, shares, and donations!  He would be so happy and proud of what we have accomplished so far and would be rooting for us to keep going until we reach our team goal! 

If you have not donated yet please know that any amount is ok. This is not about who donates the most but about giving what you can. It all adds up and it all goes to the same wonderful cause.

If you have already donated please continue to share my fundraising link https://give.classy.org/nicatnight with your connections on social media an/or email. Your shares are what informs people what we are trying to accomplish. It’s free to share it and only takes a moment of your time. That moment could lead to wonderful things. Look what it’s done so far!

Thank you again to everyone who has helped us get to where we are right now! We could not have done it without you. My family is so grateful for all of your support.

Go TEAM ROSIE!
Nicole

Back Bone: Team Rosie Lives On In All Of Us

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As some of you may know, we lost my Uncle Randy unexpectedly this year. What you may or may not know is he was incredibly passionate about supporting Down in the Southland on behalf of his daughter Rosemary. A few years ago he started Team Rosie to help raise money for their Annual Fundraiser Walk.

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This is the last thing he posted on Facebook before he passed away…

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I am walking again this year to keep his legacy going strong for my cousin and to help raise money for this wonderful foundation he wholeheartedly believed in!

How can you help?

Donate: Simply make a donation on my fundraising page at https://give.classy.org/nicatnight to support Down in the Southland on behalf of Team Rosie. No amount is too small and every dollar helps us to reach our goal. The process is fast, easy, and secure. I truly appreciate any support you can provide and it will benefit a great cause that means so much to my family!

Share: Help me reach my fundraising goal by sharing this page on social media and emailing it to your connections to help raise awareness!

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Let’s make my Uncle proud! GO TEAM ROSIE!

Stay Spooky & Supportive!
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LDG Nicole

Back Bone: AWFF 2018 Donation

awff flierA few weeks ago I finished up judging for the annual AxWound Film Festival and now I am mailing out up my donation package that will be used for the raffle prizes.

I decided my “Twisted” portrait of the Soska Sisters would be the ideal prize for anyone who supports us women in horror (with some added goodies of corpse). As an artist who loves supporting other artists, I am honored each year that I am asked to donate my time and work for this amazing cause.

Living Dead Girl Nicole AWFF Donation

Hannah Neurotica started this event to help support female horror filmmakers. She is also the creator of Women In Horror Month that I and many others actively support and celebrate every February. In other words, Hannah is doing amazing things for women in the horror industry and I love backing her up and being a part of her visions. To see more of the projects I have supported with my art, visit the Back Bone section of my portfolio page.

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

Speak up for HR1187 Today!

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For those of us living with the daily challenges of a chronic gastrointestinal (GI) disorder (feel free to read my own personal journey here) or if you know someone who is, your voice is needed to create change! Today is IFFGD‘s Virtual Advocacy Day that was put into place to be our inspiration to make Congress aware of the importance of HR1187.

Here is the list IFFGD has provided to us to help share why we need to raise awareness for functional gastrointestinal and motility disorders (FGIMDs) and my added inputs for each……

  • Because FGIMDs are the most common digestive problems in the general population, affecting 1 in 4 people in the US.

Why are there not stricter labels and restrictions on our food? Why are there so many new GI conditions? This is not a fad this is an epidemic and it’s on the rise.

  • Because many are characterized by chronic and debilitating symptoms, often requiring a lifetime of care.

For me, a total colectomy was the answer to my colonic inertia and tortuous dead large intestine. But I still live every day controlled on how my body decides to react to things now that I have no large intestine, no gallbladder and developed adhesions and complications from my surgery.

  • Because some can be life-threatening, robbing those affected of their lives and their family members and friends of their loved ones.

Try living with the worst stomach ache that you have ever had and be made to live and function like a regular person. To have it happen unpredictably to you and control everything you do in life. Having to have your spouse turn into your caregiver and miss work to take care of you. Not being sure if you can make plans with others or travel because it all depends on how you feel. And when you do make those plans have to bring a purse full of medications to control unpredictable symptoms and your heating pad for overnight stays just to be comfortable. And let’s not forget how this effects those suffering with finding employment to not only stay financially stable but to pay all your medical expenses. Not everyone can be approved for disability, not all employers are understanding and there are not enough remote work from home opportunities for those of us who actually need them (I know cause I am still actively looking).

  • Because they remain poorly understood, and those affected are often misdiagnosed or mistreated.

I was misdiagnosed for 8 years and had every test imaginable. It was not until I traveled to Mayo Clinic in Minnesota and saw their specialist that I was able to finally get answers and the proper surgery I needed. Doctors here were telling me I had IBS and acid reflux and the whole time my large intestine was literally dieing inside of me. I was also told by one surgeon that I needed a colostomy bag to diagnosis what was wrong with me. Luckily I stuck to my gut (pun intended) and didn’t trust what these doctors were telling me. I literally had to go online and research my symptoms and talk to others who were also suffering to get answers. At many times after doing so I would have to ask doctors to perform tests on me that they didn’t even think to try.

  • Because no cures and few effective treatments exist

During my misdiagnosed years the doctors were trying to pump me with fiber and other medications that was actually making my symptoms worse. Many of us suffering can not get approved for medical marijuana for pain, nausea and to help with appetite because our conditions are not cookie cutter and on a list. Yet we can be prescribed narcotics/opiates that help with the pain but actually cause other organs in our body to fail, our symptoms to get worse, and are contributing to the rise of addiction. On top of all of that, many of us have new conditions (anxiety, depression, other organs issues) caused by the years of not getting treatment that we needed and trying to live and function like everyone else.

For all of these reasons, and more, we are taking a stand for the millions of Americans affected by asking our House Members of Congress to cosponsor The Functional Gastrointestinal and Motility Disorders Research Enhancement Act (HR 1187).

Here are 3 ways you can take action:

  1. Find your House Congressional Representative and send an email (use this sample letter for inspiration).
  2. Call the U.S. Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask to speak to your Representative’s healthcare staff member.
  3. Find your Representative’s Twitter handle or Facebook profile and share your message on social media with #HR1187.

Working together on Advocacy Day and throughout the year, we carry a clear, impactful message — that research needs to happen NOW! By speaking up, you can help expand critical research, initiate important legislation, and facilitate the development of new treatment options, cures, stricter food labels, disability/job protection, and doctors to be re-educated to stop misdiagnosing! If you share anything today let it be this post!

Stay Spooky & Supportive,
LDG Nicole