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Hello friends! My name is Dana (day-nuh not dan-uh), welcome to Wonder Forest. I've been blogging here since the summer of June, 2011. This blog is an expression of creativity, inspiration, and beauty. If you are new here, you can check out my "best of 2012" posts right here, create something here, view some of my makeup tutorials and beauty loves here, see what I've been wearing here, or if you are in need of some blogging tips and tricks, check out my brand new site here.
Now a little about me... I am a twenty-something year old idea-machine and live in one of the largest summer tourist spots in Ontario, Canada, right by the beaches of the Georgian Bay. It is amazing here in the summer, but in the winter we are pretty much Eskimos. I have a little handmade shop under the same name (Wonder Forest), and a design shop called Envye where you can pick up some premade Blogger templates and more goodies.
I am basically your unconventional neighborhood techy nerd girl who designs and builds things by day, and goes to bed thinking about what else I can create at night. I'm in the process of creating my own "internet empire" and share bits and pieces of my journey on Wonder Forest along the way. You can check out my first app for Blogger users right here, or visit my apps page here for more.
Besides being a total nerd, I have always had a love for girly things like fashion and beauty. Makeup is my daily wearable expression of art, and some might even call my bursting messy closet an "artistic expression" too ;). I grew up reading Seventeen and duplicating makeup looks with the plethora of Elizabeth Arden cosmetics my grandmother would constantly give to me. (She was a die hard Arden fan, and actually worked for Elizabeth back in the day.) I've always said that if I hadn't found my path in graphic design, I would have become a makeup artist, hands down.
My favourites (at the moment)
TV shows: Dexter, Workaholics, New Girl, True Blood, Wilfred, Pretty Little Liars
Colours: Mint and turquoise
Clothing brands: Wildfox, Free People, 7 For All Mankind, True Religion
Makeup brands: Lorac, Everyday Minerals, Mac, Rimmel
Food: Yorkshire puddings, cereal, bananas. Give me these and I could survive.
Movies: WAY too tough... I can never seem to pick one. Almost Famous is one of my all time top picks though.
I have been an entrepreneur since birth. I started my very first legitimate company when I was just sixteen years old. As I grew into my twenties, it became apparent that the typical working world just wasn't for me. I quit all of those time-wasting retail and service jobs to pursue a passion in web/graphic design and never looked back. I taught myself the ins and outs of the industry and decided to put my skills to work and build a corporation instead of attending college. The next 6.5 years were spent dedicating every ounce of energy into the success of my business, and most of all following my own rules. I was overwhelmed by that success and the fact that I had conquered what I had set out to do. I truly believe that anybody can accomplish what they want to if they simply try. This is what I love to encourage on my blog. You can read my full "Building a Business" story right here.
I have done many things in life and have always been pretty business savvy. I've done everything from clothing lines to online designer retail stores to band promotion services, and used to be pretty active in the music scene. My true love is digital design.
I work from home and own a graphic and web design company. I have been in this industry for over 10 years now and have worked with everyone from small business owners to major recording artists... to people just like you! I've also created the BlogGo iPhone/iPad app for blogging on the go, and a blogging e-book Blog Wonderful.
Basically, if you had to give me a title, I guess you could just call me a creator!
I am engaged to an amazing guy named Dustin who is a U.S. citizen
We knew each other in the online world many, many years ago and would chat daily on AIM while we both worked away at our jobs. I didn't think a thing of it at the time. We were both seeing other people at the time and didn't think of each other in a "romantic" way (even though he would consistently flirt with me!). I even remember telling him I would never date him! (By the way, you can read his side of the story here).
After a little while, some of those weird, funny feeling heart-shaped butterflies started forming in our tummies. How crazy! I had never even met the guy! We ended things with our current partners because both of our relationships were going nowhere.
Then, one random spontaneous weekend, he told me he wanted to come to my house. It was a crazy thought, but something in my heart told me that I HAD to meet this guy. I've never felt the need to meet someone so badly before. Normally, I would have just said no, but those funny butterflies had me getting ready for his weekend arrival.
I had never been so nervous! It would take him 4 hours to arrive and when that time finally came, excitement took over. I will remember this forever: Getting that call from him telling me he was at my building and slowly walking out of my door into the condo lobby. There he was, just standing there, his bags in hand and guitar close by. I lit up and immediately ran over to hug him! He told me later that he had thought about pulling a cruel joke on me... rolling his eyes and turning around to walk away when he saw me, hahaha. I'm glad he opted for big smiles and a hug instead ;)
We spent that whole weekend together, and let me just say, there were FIREWORKS! :) We were smitten with each other. I felt like I had made the best decision of my life. Only there was one problem... he lived in the USA! When he left I was so sad. He did make a point of coming back every couple of weekends though. It was amazing... but at the same time it was torture because I never knew when I would see him next... and it hurt. I've never felt my heart hurt like that before. The desire to want to be with someone so bad and wanting them all for yourself.
As fate would have it, some situations took place that I'm sure all happened for the very reason of us being together. He basically had no reason to stay in the States anymore and after only a few months, he left his life and headed to Canada. He was going to live with me. It was scary, and real, but so perfect. I had never lived with anyone before... no roommates ever, just little old me... so it was going to be an adjustment, but a good one! We fell in love and continue to write our story every day.
On Christmas of 2009 he proposed to me. It was probably the best Christmas gift I could have ever received! We are still currently engaged and looking forward to possibly getting hitched in the summer of 2012! Check out our self-shot engagement photos here.
We live together with our FIVE pets who we both love like they are our children. His crazy/psychotic sometimes-evil-yet-mostly-cute black cat named Matilda, my amazingly lovable cuddly maltese pup named Bear, the most ridiculously cute soft-spoken yet insanely goofy maine coon kitty named Nugget, Benny the homeless-no-more chatterbox who just would not stop showing up at our doorstep, and finally the little baby Oliver I found in our forest most recently.We are HUGE animal lovers in this house!
Art has been a part of my life since I was born. I'm pretty sure I came out of the womb with a sketchbook in my arms. I grew up addicted to crafting and traditional arts, like painting, drawing, etc. and was known as an ‘artist’ by everyone who knew me. My public school walls are still covered with murals I did as a child. In my younger years around the age of 12 or so, I took cartooning classes because I always had a dream of working for Disney. I was also very active in craft sales and was always one of the youngest vendors (funny to think about now!). I went to a special school for the arts throughout high school also. Art has just been my way of life! I'd be lost without it.
a painting, and two digital tablet drawings.
I hope you enjoyed learning a bit about me. Why not tell me about yourself? If you would like to contact me, go here.