valiha: my username presented as a barcode (my username)
2010-09-27 12:56 am
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[sticky entry] Sticky: This journal...

...will hopefully serve as a place to post some of my attempts at traditional art, random photos I sometimes take on my way to and from work, as well as some fandom wallpapers.

All my fandom work can be transformed. Parts of it can be used to create your own fanart - wallpapers, collages, icons and other graphics. I would certainly appreciate a link back to see what you've done with it, but it is not obligatory.

Fanart created for specific people on DW/LJ and elsewhere belongs to those users, and they are free to do with it what they want. I ask that you do not use it publicly unless you receive permission from them.


If you'd like to help me raise money for my master's thesis defense, you can commission me - details in this post.

[Resources] [Calligraphy] [Drawing] [Photography] [Watercolor]

7 Men, 1 Destiny on LiveJournal and Dreamwidth
Magnificent Seven Wallpapers
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2017-10-01 08:48 pm
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Is anyone on my flist posting for Inktober this year? I was thinking of trying it for the first time, then forgot today is October 1st :D Still, I have some time before the end of the day.
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2017-09-09 08:46 pm

Bookbinding commissions

Hello all, I’m trying to raise money for my LIS master’s thesis defense, and I’m opening commissions.

I spent most of this year in chemotherapy, and while we have universal healthcare, My pay was cut since I was on medical leave, and I couldn't work at my second job. As a result, I had to use my savings to pay for additional meds and bills.

I offer handmade items: handbound sketchbooks and printed planners, and genuine & faux leather traveler’s notebooks.
The techniques I use are Coptic stitch, vellum and case binding. I also plan to add calligraphy and watercolor commissions soon; page updates will follow.

Read more... )

valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2017-07-01 11:03 pm
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(no subject)

:sigh: My poor Dreamwith... I think I'll have to change my theme, at least until I manage to upload my images to another host. But most of them don't seem to fit... :goes back to searching:
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2017-07-01 05:50 pm
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WTH, Photobucket?!

So anyone else have any issues with Photobucket breaking your img links?

valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2017-07-01 05:04 pm
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I am done!

On June 1 I received my last chemotherapy.

:sigh of relief:

I think it's only today that it really hit me that I won't have to be going back there for more chemicals to be pumped through my veins (my poor veins!). This past month has been really crazy, with me falling ill several days after going home: my fever spiked at above 38°C, and lasted for a few days, but luckily there were no intestinal problems, which was a major issue the last time I experienced something similar.

I'm lucky in that my GP's office is located in the same neighborhood, just five minutes away, so I was monitored for any symptoms that would require me to be hospitalized again. It took a couple of weeks, but after that I was back on my feet.

I still feel achy all over; even going to the grocery store across the street leaves me tired and sore. I've also gone to work for a few hours last week, so that's also tiring, especially since it takes an hour to get there, and an hour to go back.

Next ween on Tuesday will me my first check-up; the results of the MRI, PET CT, the ultrasound and my bloodwork are all OK. The check-ups will be scheduled every three months for the next two years; after that they'll be scheduled for every six months. I've got to drink plenty of water - 2 - 2.5 liters every day minimum, eat a lot of vegetables, go to the mountains, and be more physically active (I was always hungry during the therapy when I wasn't sick and throwing up, so I gained a lot of weight - I thought it would be the opposite).

All that is going to be a problem because of finances: I am on sick leave, which means I get 80% of my pay, and I stopped working at my second job because it was a night shift and after a while I just couldn't keep up any more. Still had to pay back my loan every month, and I have 13 more years before I own my apartment. I will definitely have to find some additional work to help wit the expenses.

I also restarted working on my postgraduate thesis - I tried to keep up during the therapy, but I couldn't keep up. I'd often start reading a page, and would have to go back several times because I couldn't follow what was being said. Luckily I had spoken with my mentor and she said I should concentrate on getting my health back together and that we'll talk again after I was finished with my therapy.

We met on Thursday, and spoke at length about what I need to do and what to focus on; I still feel like this is a huge project, especially since my BA was in another field and I had to catch up a lot to be able to do this (it still feels like there are huge gaps in my knowledge that I have to fill). But at least things are clearer, and seem a little more manageable. I have to send in the first draft of the first part of the thesis on July 20, so I hope the deadline will help me focus.

But here's hoping that it will all turn out fine in the future :)
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2017-06-03 01:25 am

Chemo, the end

Yesterday I received the last medication in the course of my chemotherapy. It lasted about five hours, and I didn’t need to stay at the hospital ward overnight.

My first after chemo check-up will be in a month, and I’m hoping for good results. I also hope that my appetite will go back to normal - I’ve been hungry all the time, which was a surprise. When I started, I thought I would lose my appetite but the opposite happened. As a result, I gained weight, and now will have to work extra hard to get rid of it.

I’m on medical leave until mid August, so hopefully by that time I will have started getting back in shape.
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2017-05-10 04:50 pm

Chemo, take 8

I'm going to the hospital again tomorrow for my 8th chemotherapy, which is supposed to be my last. I've got nearly everything packed, from pajamas to fresh fruit, and I hope I won't have to stay longer than 4-5 days. Unfortunately our hospitals don't have a practice of using a port for hooking up the IV, so my poor veins are in a bad condition; some puncture locations are swollen, others are hard to touch, and one seems to be inflamed - I noticed this morning that it was red and painful to touch. I'll definitely draw attention to this; that's not supposed to happen.

After I'm done with all of this, I intend to start posting more regularly (I've said that before, but I really mean it this time :crosses fingers:), and I mean to start working on improving my calligraphy, bookbinding and watercolor skills. The money I had saved for my postgrad had to go for bills, some additional meds and healthier food, so I need to find an additional source of income. I had to quit my nightly teaching job because I couldn't handle being awake until 3 a.m. any more; I can reapply but if I do, I'll have to rework my schedule so that I can work on my thesis as well as on my skills. It won't bring in as much as it used to, but any little bit will help. And hopefully, once I finish my postgrad, I'll be able to ask for a raise.

If only I could win that jack pot... :D
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2017-02-26 11:17 am

(no subject)

My poor stomach, I'm taking so many pills a day depending on my schedule that it's constantly bloated and irritated 😞 Yesterday I had 11 in the morning, 6 in the afternoon and 4 in the evening; that's 21. There's also an injection I have to give myself in the morning - the nurses do it very quickly and they always leave painful bruises.

I'm waiting to hear on when my PET CT will be scheduled - they are again having issues with getting the reagents delivered from Turkey. Then we'll know if I'm going to have 2 or 4 more chemo cycles.
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2017-01-07 10:14 am

2nd chemo update

I seem to have handled this chemo well - this is day two and I don't feel any major side effects. I'm staying in hospital over the weekend; we'll see what the next week will be like. The docs have recommended a trip to the mountains; I'll have to see if that's doable.
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2017-01-04 10:08 pm

2nd chemo

So my second chemotherapy was moved from today on my birthday to tomorrow. I definitely won't receive the spinal injection - they will leave it for next time - and I will receive the Prednisone intravenously instead of in pill form. It was messing with my stomach, both the fact that I was supposed to take 5 pills 4 times a day and that they weren't the only pills I had to take. All of them together was just too much. Hopefully other side effects won't crop up with the intravenous form. o_O
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2017-01-02 12:53 pm

Home for holidays

Hi guys! I'm writing this from home, where I'm spending the couple of days of holidays. I'm going back to the hospital for my second chemo on Wednesday, and I hope there won't be any side effects this time - I had the misfortune of having trombosis in the front lobe of the brain and had to suffer through some really bad headaches, tingles and loss of sensation in the right side of my body. I'm doing much better now, and I'm giving myself shots of Clexane as treatment. It's been a long time since I finished secondary medical school, but the medical technician instructed me well. When I get back, the nurses will take over.

One thing that will change regarding therapy is that this time they will skip the injection that goes into my spine because of the trombosis. They'll reconsider it for the third therapy.
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2016-12-08 09:33 am

(no subject)

So my PET/CT scan results came back: no metastases, the lymphoma is limited just to the lymph node and tonsil, which are both out. :deep sigh of relief: 
I'm scheduled for 6 to 8 cycles, with each cycle lasting 21 days. I start the treatment in hospital, but will eventually transfer to outpatient care. They will reevaluate my progress after the first few cycles, repeat the PET/CT scan and adjust the treatment accordingly. 
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2016-12-05 11:21 pm

(no subject)

 So it looks like I will be admitted to hospital for treatment tomorrow. I hope not to stay for long, and that the therapy will not be difficult. 
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2016-12-04 07:14 pm
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Keep each others safe

I firmly believe I wouldn’t be alive today if not for a sniper with his heart in the right place.

This was the early weeks of the war, I was in my early teens and had a habit of sitting at the dining area desk, drawing. The trouble was, this desk was in front of the window looking out on the balcony, on the first floor. We had the window shuttered, but apparently some light still got through, and whoever was on the hill above our neighborhood could see inside.

The whole thing about the war starting was still a nebulous thing to our family and to many still people living in the city, so I’d spend many nights staying up, sitting at that desk, until one morning we came into the room to see the window broken, the wood shutters pierced by a high caliber bullet which knocked off a piece of the wall and was embedded into the floor. It was a clear message to stay away from the windows.

Needless to say, we boarded shut all the windows after that, made sure no light was able to leak through, and we stayed the fuck away from the windows.

As I’m getting ready to fight another war, the war for my health, I have to say: look out for each other, keep each other safe. Times are such that I wouldn’t be surprised we found ourselves in real mortal danger some time in the near future.

valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2016-12-03 10:58 pm

Health issues

It is my intention to start posting on Dreamwidth and LJ again more regularly; it would be great if there was a reliable app since considering I will be going to hospital at some indeterminate time in the future, a smartphone is what I'll have with me.

Speaking of hospitals, a repost from my LJ: On Thursday they called me from the Radiology department to let me know I am scheduled for my PET/CT scan on Friday at 11:50. They informed me of the procedure, and asked me not to be late. When I got there, they hooked me up to an IV and gave me a radioactive tracer which will help them see if the lymphoma had spread anywhere else in the body.

It took about an hour to receive the IV and to rest afterwords so that the tracer can make its way through my body. The scan itself was about 20 minutes, and then I had to wait for a nurse to remove the cannula. I didn't feel any soreness or discomfort during the IV, and was just a little uncomfortable during the scan because I had to keep still during the entire time in the machine. The test results should be available in 7 days, and the test results of the bone biopsy I did on the 15th should be ready early this coming week. Hopefully they will show that I don't need any strong chemotherapy. Wish me luck!
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2014-11-23 04:06 pm
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Daily planner, hourly breakdown

Here is my second design for today: a daily planner with an hourly breakdown.

Daily planner, hourly breakdown

valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2014-11-23 02:10 pm
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Inserts for Coptic stitch notebooks and Midori-style leather journals

Dear friends,

I've been quite neglectful with posting on both Dreamwidth and LiveJournal, and lately I've been trying to rectify that. I've been working on brushing up on my bookbinding skills so I can put up more of my works for sale.

I've also been designing diary pages and weekly/monthly planners to be used in any Midory-style leather notebooks or as a customization of my Coptic stitch journals. Today I have a diary design to share with you. Please let me know what you think of the current design, share any thoughts on possible customizations and the like. I am hoping to offer these as digital downloads on Etsy as well as physical items for sale.

As for the Coptic bound journals, let me know what kind of designs you'd be interested - a TARDIS journal for the Whovians, Starfleet arrowhead for the Trekkies, or anything else that catches your fancy. In the coming days I'll put some some photos of the papers I have to choose from.

Diary for the year 2015... )

valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2013-12-14 10:56 am

Fic rec - Pillars of Salt and Sand

Pillars of Salt and Sand (3631 words) by Lizardbeth
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Thor (Movies)
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Frigga & Loki, Loki & Thor
Characters: Loki (Marvel), Thor (Marvel)
Additional Tags: Post-Thor: The Dark World, Spoilers, Grief/Mourning

He has everything he wanted. But the price is too high.

valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
2013-11-20 01:39 am
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[personal profile] niko 's post reminded me of the music I've been listening lately - sevdah as performed by the Bosnian band Divanhana so I thought I might as well share :-)