Archive for the ‘Hobby’ category

Makin’shit up

April 29, 2019

When I retire, I’ll spend all day just thinking up, awesomely creative shit for the Iron Church. That includes workouts as well. No doubt.

“I’m an idea bank bitches.” ~Felicia

A Darker Side

October 8, 2016

I’ve been working on my latest cosplay. This year I’ll transform into the dark side of June Moone. I loved her in the Suicide Squad movie. I’d say it was time for a darker look. Enchantress will be my 4th rendition of a villainous, female DC character. I think the first and last Marvel cosplay I entertained was Natasha Romanova, better known as Black Widow. I’ll be sticking to my love of DC from here on out.

I’ll get good use out of this costume because I’ll be wearing it 3x. Once to a Halloween party with some gym peeps (which I’m excited for)… to work on Halloween… and then to the 2017 ABQ ComicCon. This costume looks simple, but I’d say it is the most intricate I’ve crafted to date. I’ve made most of the accessories, as well as 95% of the bra and it hasn’t been easy! I believe this is the first time that the majority of what I needed to craft a costume came from a hardware store.

I’m hoping this cosplay will come together perfectly. I’ll be a little more covered up for the first two rounds, but I’ll definitely show more strangely marked and blackened skin at ComicCon. I would wear the more riskaay costume to my 1st soirée, but the work party falls in between!

▪Creativity Keeps Me Alive!▪

Lovely Soothing Bubbly

January 13, 2015

This was the new batch of soaps I made a couple of weeks ago. Most of the bars were given to 5 fellow bodybuilders and the owner of my gym to soothe sore muscles. I also reserved a few for others I felt would appreciate them and who take the time to think about me. Over the last few years, I have significantly improved my soap making techniques. They were beautiful bars.


San Diego, California

October 15, 2014

The Diplomatic Post

We will be continuing the travel series, highlighting American cities and states, which we began on our former blog. You can find a summary of the progress of our great American road trip, thus far, here.

Introducing our guest travel blogger and State Department Virtual Student Foreign Service Intern, Hanna Bourne.

Hanna Bourne Hanna Bourne

Hello and Welcome!

My name is Hanna Bourne, born and raised on the Californian coast. I am an avid swimmer, hiker, and traveler. Whether it be cruising alongside the Pacific Highway, rafting through white water rapids, or hunting down the best curry in town, I am eager for adventure. While my wandering feet have taken me all over the United States, I have also had the pleasure of traveling abroad. Whether it be studying in Barcelona, visiting a friend in Stockholm, or saying hello to my Kiwi family outside of Auckland, I am happiest with a…

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Lil Tyke Fishing Derby

June 14, 2014

This morning we met Meghan and her husband Andrew (the water expert) at the Santa Fe River. The vital vein in Santa Fe was stocked with 500 fish for a lil tyke fishing derby. We took lil man out for a bit before his first flag football game of the day. It was his first time fishing, but he made sure I knew he was going to “catch and release.” I love my considerate, Earth loving son. I think he needs lessons from the expert fisherman~ my brother, Thomas. We saw a grip of people we knew near the river. It was a nice morning. Glad to show my love for our precious river.


A Bright Mind

August 24, 2013

Sometimes the little things are the ones that blow my mind. Last night my son pegged down his bazillionth LEGO set. For years he has been an addict and his last wish was to secure LEGO Legends of Chima. The Lion Temple set had 1,258 pieces. I have to admit that I was doubtful, but within a couple hours last night and a few hours today, little man erected that temple.

He was up at the crack of dawn with his glasses on. He was determined and ready to work. It was so cute that he kept saying “I’m on fire” because he wasn’t running into any problems. It seriously blows my mind that at 7 years old he can follow those instruction manuals flawlessly. I can’t even do that! He was so proud that I wanted “to post about him.” What an amazing kid with a bright mind. Maybe he will be an engineer some day? 🙂 

Developing Wings

August 20, 2013
~ Taking Flight a book by Kelly Rae Roberts ~

~ Taking Flight a book by Kelly Rae Roberts ~

I love being immersed in creativity. Being creative makes me feel good. It gives me a certain energy that I need. Over the years, I have embarked on countless projects, each fulfilling me in a unique way. Most recently, I created my very first dreamcatcher. My heart and soul went into that piece.

Art is something I enjoy talking about. In talking with one of my friends from work, I discovered a wonderful artist full of life and inspiration. Meghan was sure that I would like this particular artist. Visiting the web site of an amazing woman confirmed that. Today Meghan brought me “Taking Flight: Inspiration and Techniques to Give Your Creative Spirit Wings” by Kelly Rae Roberts. It is indeed a lovely book filled with symbolically thoughtful project ideas.

The chapters in the book by Roberts include: Unearthing Buried Dreams; Facing Your Fears; Creating Community; Finding the Sacred in the Ordinary; Honoring Memories; Speaking the Truth; Embracing the Journey; and Places to Fly. After talking to Meghan about the project ideas, she suggested that we get together to create! What a great idea!

The introduction of the book says “I am just like you. A girl who is always learning. A woman whose soul is vibrant with inspiration. A creative spirit that is expressive and sensitive. We are all connected, intertwining in this creative life. It’s because of this that I believe in the power of telling our stories- the stories of how we muster up our courage and leap and dance and breathe our way into our creative dreams. This is how we learn from one another. How we inspire one another. How we begin to finally see the potential and possibilities that live inside our hearts.” Kelly Rae Roberts is awesome!

This creative gem of a book is loaded with inspirational quotes and ways to be inspired. Roberts opened with a Leonardo Da Vinci quote. Ahhh… A quote by the master who said, “when once you have tasted flight, you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.” At some point, we must all develop our wings. I think mine have always been there. Sometimes I feel that I will head towards the sky and never return.

A Lady, A Hero and Hooks

March 5, 2013

A Lady, A Hero and Hooks Logo by Felicia Lujan

Today I took the day off from the gym because I had a few errands to run. When I was leaving work two people caught my eye in the lobby. There sat a gentleman and a young lady caught up in their own creative world. I was immediately intrigued by the duo and wondered what they were up to? I decide to approach them on my way out so that I could ask. My first question was “are you making jewelry?” As it turned out, they were “tying flies” to snag Pike in Pilar, New Mexico. I told them “my brother is a fisherman and he would love you!” Hum? They had set up shop in the lobby of my building and they were working away.

While I ran one of a few scheduled errands I couldn’t help but think about these two people. Who were they? Why were they tying flies? Were they grandpa and grandchild? What was their story? I know I love history more than running errands, and by this point I can probably add more than coffee because I made a mad dash back to work. In a split second I had decided that I wanted to know more. I approached the busy workers with a smile while asking many questions. It is always so refreshing to meet new people who want to share their stories. In a short amount of time I had learned all about these people. I also set up a phone interview with the gentleman for this evening.

~Dr. Dinwiddie and Jamie Groves Working~ Photograph by Felicia Lujan_3.5.2013

~Dr. Dinwiddie and Jamie Groves Working~
Photograph by Felicia Lujan_3.5.2013

Since the first of the month I had been contemplating which woman I wanted to research and write about in honor of National Women’s History Month (2013). The more I thought about that particular young lady, the more I realized I should focus on a woman who is currently making history. I was so amazed that a 24 year old woman was so mature, caring, creative, and patriotic. This special woman and her hero/mentor/grandfather figure had a worthy story to tell. This month is indeed Women’s History Month and the Library of Congress is featuring an exhibit titled The Women of Four Wars. Ms. Jamie Groves and Dr. Stu Dinwiddie are honoring our wounded warriors in a very special and unique way which is right in line with that exhibit.

Jamie Groves and Dr. Dinwiddie are not related. These individuals just work together to help disabled veterans, still Jamie thinks that Stu is “the granddaughter that he never had.” For the last six months, they have been tying flies and giving them to Albuquerque veterans as part of Project Healing Waters. The mission of that organization is dedicated “to the physical and emotional rehabilitation of disabled active duty personnel and veterans through fly fishing and fly tying education and outings.” It is such an awesome project that I was so honored to learn about. Dr. Dinwiddie is also a disabled veteran who now uses his time to help others along with his youthful partner. He has become Jamie’s mentor by teaching her to fly fish. Dr. Dinwiddie said that he was taught how to fly fish at 14 years old and that he learned from the son of Aldo Leopold!

~Jamie Groves Tying a Pike Fly~ Photograph by Felicia Lujan_3.5.2013

~Jamie Groves Tying a Pike Fly~
Photograph by Felicia Lujan_3.5.2013

~A Jamie Groves Handcrafted Pike Fly~ Photograph by Felicia Lujan_3.5.2013

~A Jamie Groves Handcrafted Pike Fly~
Photograph by Felicia Lujan_3.5.2013

Jamie truly is a rare woman. At 24 years old she is contributing to the well being of those who made a difference in New Mexico history by protecting our freedom. She is passionate about what she does and insisted I didn’t take her picture until she “was working” and showing me the Evergreen Hand. The Evergreen Hand is a special tool invented and developed by Jesse Scott to assist disabled veteran fishermen. I was astonished to learn that Jamie will be teaching wounded warriors who have lost a hand or arm how to tie a fly with one hand. After watching them for a while, I don’t think I could tie one with two! This wonderful woman told me proudly that she sits on one hand to practice. This is how she knows that she can teach others. Dr. Dinwiddie told me that Jamie was touched on a recent visit with wounded women. Her participation in this project makes a world of a difference in a male dominated sport/hobby.

I am always so intrigued by the hidden history of our community. These two people are involved in a project so worthy of a mention. I was honored to take the time to learn so much. I learned about a lady and a hero making a difference in the lives of our wounded warriors one hook at a time.

Custom Crafted Rods by Stu Dinwiddie

Phone: 505.470.3673


Painting in the Sun

March 3, 2013

I spent the morning in the warm sun painting. I am working on a mini billboard for an event on March 12. Summer will be here soon and I can’t wait. There was a breeze, still the light draft was invigorating. My wind chimes sounded sweet and enchanting~ which inspires me. Sometimes I forget just how much I love to paint. I enjoy my quiet time- just me, the wind, the sun, bird songs and a brush.

After hitting the track and running a few errands, it got really windy here. I took the afternoon to consolidate my art supplies. My new little cabinet is a rolling rainbow. It will come in very handy!

After hitting the track and running a few errands, it got really windy here. I took the afternoon to consolidate my art supplies. My new little cabinet is a rolling rainbow. It will come in very handy!

A Cook with Heart

November 1, 2012
Red Chile Chicken Enchiladas made by Felicia

Red Chile Chicken Enchiladas made by Felicia

<3…A loving heart is
the beginning of all knowledge.
…..Thomas Carlyle

Tonight I made red chile enchiladas and beans to take to work tomorrow. I watched the CMA awards (awesome) while I cooked. Cooking is second nature to me. I went through: 80 corn tortillas; 6 pounds of cheese; 24 ounces of extra hot New Mexican red chile powder; 3 bunches of green onions; 2 cans of black olives; and six cups of beans. Last week the archives hosted a large event filled with scholarly lectures, silent films, books, and a grip of history. Everyone worked so hard planning and preparing, so I wanted to show my appreciation. I enjoy doing things for people because it makes me feel good. Hopefully my Friday treat will be enjoyed by everyone on staff. There may be some things I am still unsure of, but there are a few things I do know without a doubt. I am a woman with a good heart and I am an *excellent* cook. Hey— with luck and hard work, hopefully the rest will fall into place! 🙂

Pans of Red Chile Chicken Enchiladas made by Felicia

Pans of Red Chile Chicken Enchiladas made by Felicia

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Drafting “Midnight”

October 10, 2012

Mar~ I love, love, love you gurl! Today you gave me just what I was looking for. After we talked about memorable movie quotes and I looked at the list you sent me, my ideas started flowing like lava. I ended up going with the Dracula sound clips. Nice!! I am saving the best one (about the ocean) for a slow mix set. Why didn’t I think of that movie?! You lil vamp you! Tonight I drafted “Midnight” using Audacity. So far the mix features two Dracula clips, a Patsy Cline song, a Pitbull song, a Miguel Jontel song, and sounds of a heartbeat. I can always count on you Mar. You are awesome. Thanks!! 🙂 I can’t wait to finish.

~Drafting “Midnight” by F in Audacity~
(an open-source~cross-platform software)


Atalaya: The Unforgiving Trail

September 30, 2012

~~Chamisa Plants and Blue Sky~~
Atalaya Trail in Santa Fe, New Mexico
September 23, 2012
*Photograph by Felicia Lujan*

~~Purple Wildflowers~~
Atalaya Trail in Santa Fe, New Mexico
September 23, 2012
*Photograph by Felicia Lujan*

Last weekend we went hiking here in Santa Fe. Sunday is a regular workout day for us and that includes a workout day for Daryn. We usually eat what we want on Friday night and on Saturday, but by Sunday it is time to get “back on track” by eating right and exercising. It was a really beautiful day and the views on this hike were amazing. I actually had a great time until the very end. I landed up taking a nasty fall. I spiraled in the air ultimately landing with a mouth full of New Mexico earth. My ankle and foot ended up severely bruised, and my knee got totally jacked up. The good news is I didn’t break anything.

Atalaya Trail in Santa Fe, New Mexico
September 23, 2012
*Photograph by Felicia Lujan*

~~View of the City of Santa Fe~~
Atalaya Trail in Santa Fe, New Mexico
September 23, 2012
*Photograph by Felicia Lujan*

The hike up was good. I did jog almost the entire way, which may have contributed to a tired ankle. Contrary to what one “other” may think, I was paying very close attention to my surroundings. I took some sweet photographs and took the time to actually absorb the forest. The Santa Fe National Forest is a tranquil place. The Atalaya Trail coincides with Atalaya Mountain. The trail is around a total of seven miles long. We did about three miles that day. Mike would have pushed to go further if we hadn’t had Daryn. “D” is 7 years old and he was starting to get tired. I was so proud of him for going even that distance~ complimenting him on his well developed endurance. I took a photo of him with a red face as he rested on a moss rock once he had raised his white flag.

~~Daryn Resting on a Moss Rock~~
Atalaya Trail in Santa Fe, New Mexico
September 23, 2012
*Photograph by Felicia Lujan*

I would rather have my seven year old stop than risk him being injured in some way. I have been injured several times over the years while working out. The most notable injuries were endured in the gym. I have slammed my hand into the treadmill while running. I still have a scar on my right hand knuckle. A tricept pull down bar once came off the machine and fell on my head. Unfortunately, that injury required stitches. Another time I turned my ankle on a fitness ball for abs (that time I was messing around and landed up on the floor).

~~Sun Through the Tree~~
Atalaya Trail in Santa Fe, New Mexico
September 23, 2012
*Photograph by Felicia Lujan*

Atalaya Trail in Santa Fe, New Mexico
September 23, 2012
*Photograph by Felicia Lujan*

This time my injury came outdoors. No crutches, no pills, little complaining~ just surviving some pain. My sister called me last night to check on me. She said “I had wanted to ask you if you got to work out last week?” She is always so considerate. I love my sis. I told her that I had insisted on working out. I did upper body when I could and on Friday I completed a low impact leg workout regardless of the bruising. After all these years of working out, I have come to understand that fitness and injury can go hand in hand unless you are a cyborg. It is unfortunate, but true. We just need to push thorough the pain and stay on track. The unforgiving trail has nothing on this!

~~My Knee~~
Atalaya Trail in Santa Fe, New Mexico
September 23, 2012
*Photograph by Felicia Lujan*

Eat My Dust!

August 26, 2012

Thomas, Laura, Felicia and Jessica Lujan in June of 1983
Arroyo Jacona- Pojoaque, New Mexico

Today I went to the valley to deliver a birthday present to my dad. Now that I am older I can appreciate all the little things about the town I grew up in. There are gorgeous rock mountains which would make a great subject for a work of art. There are so many quirky houses like the one up on the hill where the old track and field once stood. I remember all the stores that are no longer around. The best memory I evoked today was pulled from the smell of motorcycle exhaust. I realized how much the smell reminded me of riding. I could almost taste dirt in my teeth? As soon as I smelled that exhaust, I remembered this cute photo of the twins, my cousin Jessica and I. I was 8 years old going on 9, my brother and sister were 4 years old going on 5, and my cousin Jess must have been about 7.

I have never really been what I would call an extreme girly girl. When I was a youngster I could run hard with the toughest boys in the neighborhood- and hey I can still say that I pride myself on running with the toughest in the gym! I didn’t care if I would get dirty, look messy, or if all the girls liked me. As a matter of fact, there may have been a few who I told to “eat my dust!” Haha… I am almost positive that was one of the many silly phrases my dad made up while we were thrashing the New Mexico earth with rubber tires! Being that we were from the valley, three-wheelers were a regular part of growing up. Most of our friends had them, and me and the twins would beg to ride. We had two 110s- one red and one blue. They were just the right size for us and didn’t have enough power to “throw us around.” Come on? Don’t you know what that means? Both of my brothers still love to ride. Thomas and Isaiah have an armory of bikes for hunting, fishing, camping and fun. Brian and his family love to visit the Dunes with their click.

When I was a kid, on several occasions we took the three-wheelers through the arroyos or “the back way” to Sam and Kim’s house. They were friends with my parents and we would make a day of it. We packed all kinds of stuff in the 3×6 compartment in the rear of the ‘wheeler. Then there were countless times that Laura, Tom and I cruised to Ponce’s to load up on junk. We gathered all the money we could find and would buy candy up the wazoo and maybe put more gas. It was always fun to ride through the river and get covered in mud. A few times I remember getting stuck or stalling out and being really scared that I couldn’t pull start the bike again or that it would simply sink away into oblivion! I would go as far as saying that not one inch of the Pojoaque Valley was left untouched by my family- no matter the season. In the winter, we used the three-wheelers to pull each other on whatever would make a good sled.

When I started blooming into girlhood, I was still in love with riding. We climbed mountains- crossed rivers, raged through arroyos, blazed around trees, passed through sand, and loved every minute. I can’t forget about the time I flipped backwards a bazillion times with my friend Tammy. Now that was funny (right Tam?). There was a big hill at Lino’s house and our parents were having a get together outside. Tammy wanted to take me up the hill (which is no longer there) and I was hanging on for dear life! I think I told her to gas it- and from there it was a blur. We landed up flying through the air backwards and then came to a stop with a mouth full of dirt on the ground. Ouch… We laughed about it when I met her coffee a while back. It was funny because we were so addicted to riding that we just pretended like nothing happened so we wouldn’t get in trouble. Tammy’s glasses were all cracked and crooked and we just got right back on the bike. Haha!

The older I got, the more I loved having a set of wheels to get from point A to point B or B to Z. One of my good friends lived in El Rancho, so I would take the three-wheeler to her house from mine in Arroyo Jacona. Me and Ang would take the three-wheeler to our friend Kim’s and we would meet up with others in our “riding crew!” Kim was another lover of the wheels. I remember her doing some things on her bike that would surely make a boy cry! She knew how to handle her wheels and had mastered the hills near her home. I miss her. Today I was sad to I realize that next year she will miss our 20 year class reunion. She had really  been looking forward to it.

Who would think that the strangest smells could induce the most precious memories? When exhaust fumes tickled my nose, I was immediately transported back in time. I guess you never know when, where or what will trigger memories. I am just glad that I now have a means of recording them.

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I didn't have my glasses on....

A trip through life with fingers crossed and eternal optimism.

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