Monday, December 11, 2017

Lots To Catch Up On

 How is everyone doing? I have so much catching up to do. First I was MIA because Bill and I went to Cape May for 5 days to celebrate the Victorian Christmas festivities as we did last year. We had mostly sunny and fairly mild (50's F) days. The coolest day was our day on the beach by the lighthouse -the air was crisp and there was a cold breeze. However, that did not stop me from doing this:

 Let me tell you -that water was CCCOLD but I always dip my toes in no matter what the temperature. I didn't last very long though:)

 A few pics about town:

First up- for the gang over at T Stands For Tuesday- after settling into our room we went for a late lunch at Delaney's Irish Pub-a place we always visit at least once each trip. As you can see Bill was praying I get the dessert photo taken quickly :):)

Just two of the many beautifully decorated homes we passed by each night. These were on the way to the caroling and tree lighting ceremony.

                           It was getting very crowded as we neared the park.

The lighted tree. Just spectacular to see in person! Not easy to get a pic as throngs of couples and families were getting pics taken in front of it.

 Sadly when we got home it was only just in time for our great Aunt Betty's funeral. She passed away in the hospital. I had seen her just before we left and had that feeling it would be the last. As difficult as it is, she did live a long (just shy of 91) mostly good life and she will forever be remembered in our hearts.

 Also while away, I did get some wonderful happy mail. I had won another $50 GC- this time to Altenew, and the pkg. arrived! I just haven't had the chance to use anything yet, but once the holiday frenzy settles... I also received my order from the Simon Says Shop - a few dies and things to make Christmas cards. I may only get a few of these done but will keep them in mind for next year:)

 For the Simon Wednesday Challenge  ("gift it"), Try It On Tuesday ("twinkle, twinkle"),  the Simon Monday Challenge ( "Christmas/Winter Holidays") and the new challenge at Tag Tuesday (Christmas Memories) I made this tag:

 As hard as I tried I just couldn't capture the glitter on the snowflake, words or poinsettia. It looks so pretty in person.

 I also have the first part of December's calendar page and art completed:

A close up of the cardinal:

and then I digitally added a sentiment to my page-just for Art Journal Journey hosted by the talented Sheila this month with the theme of "Let's Celebrate!" :

 I am also joining Paint Party Friday later this week. It will be a pleasure catching up and making lots of visits- I sure have missed everyone!

 "Celebrate the happiness that friends are always giving; make every day a holiday and celebrate just living."         Amanda Bradley

Monday, November 27, 2017

Ho Ho Ho!

 Well, here we are into the next holiday and another year soon ending. I have just begun getting my card list and ideas together. How about you?

 We spent a very small quiet Thanksgiving at home. It wasn't the same without my Mom (who went to my one brother's place for the first time) or Aunt Betty who is back in the hospital and not doing so well. But it was nice to have our son and his girlfriend with us. And I'm sharing my glass of wine with friends over at T Stands For Tuesday. Bring along your beverage of choice and enjoy a visit won't you?

 One last entry for Art Journal Journey hosted this month by Chris with the lovely theme of "101 Ways To Keep Warm" Thank you Chris!:

 I painted this snowman, er, woman over the weekend (inspired by a you tube video). She looks quite happy probably because of the earmuffs and scarf. Who's to say a snowman doesn't get cold too? The words were added digitally and she is sitting on a mound of snow that is all glittery but I wasn't able to capture it.

 I also made this tag meant for the Simon Monday Challenge (Star Light, Star Bright theme), and Tag Tuesday (Anything Goes with a bit of lime green):

 Products: manila tag; paints; gesso; star sequin waste; Tim Holtz Paper Dolls, Small Talk Occasions Stickers; Versafine Onyx Black ink; In Stitches clear stamp set (Whimsy Stamps); silver star sticker (Stickopotamus); washi tape (Recollections).

 I am so hoping this post looks ok and the photos are clear. Windows 10 did another automatic update and now my views are all askew and very wide, along with other things messed up :( Will get my tech support (aka son Todd) to help me out soon.

 I have a very busy week or so ahead but will be around to visit. Thanks for stopping in! A bientôt.

    " A warm smile is the universal language of kindness."   Arthur Ward

Monday, November 20, 2017

A Mix of This and That

 Good day ( or evening depending on where you live)! I am still a bit busy assisting our great aunt as much as I can going back and forth to her home, visiting Momma cat (who is now with her original owner temporarily- the vet) and making hospital visits. Thankfully I can still get my own housework done and get a little art time in along with the Deepak and Oprah meditation series. And now I will also be preparing for a small Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday with just hubby , son and his gf.

 This vintage tag is meant for Tag Tuesday (theme is music), and the Simon Monday Challenge (theme is tear it up). Products: white tag; music washi tape (Tim Holtz Ideaology); gesso; torn patterned paper; vintage collage sheet image and sentiment (ARTchix Studio); snowflake stickers (Mrs. Grossmans); dot sparkler stickers (Stampendous).

 For T Stands For Tuesday with Bleubeard and Elizabeth and friends:

Not long ago Bill and I went antiquing not to buy- just for fun- in an area we've been to many times before. And we decided to have an early dinner at McCooles Red Lion Inn which we also enjoy:

Not sure if you can click on it to make it larger to read...

They served us some pumpkin hummus and pita bread while waiting for our order. I never had pumpkin hummus before and it was pretty good.

We both had the crab cakes-a favorite of ours there along with roasted cauliflower and rice.

 And of course hubby had to have dessert with his coffee:)

that chocolate cake was so rich and decadent-and he ate all but one bite! Special pose from him to your hubby Chris ;)

 Speaking of Chris- I made a journal page for Art Journal Journey with the theme of '101 Ways To Keep Warm' hosted by Chris this month:

 Not sure if I want to add words or not so this is it for now. Cozy thoughts of reading by candlelight. My page was inspired by another 'Painting With Jane' you tube video. I used acrylic paints, brushes and a palette knife.

 Detail of the candle:

  Also linking to Try It On Tuesday (theme is colourful) along with  Paint Party Friday later this week.

 I made one of my recent journal page paintings into cards:

and to those of you celebrating I wish you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving! Til next time...

"If you use gratitude a little, your life will change a little. If you use gratitude a lot everyday, your life will change in ways you can hardly imagine now."       Rhonda Byrne

Monday, November 13, 2017

Comfort And Warmth- and Giveaway Winner!

 What a difference a week has made here. From record highs to now record lows:(  No more outdoor flowers, gloves are out, and flannel sheets are on the beds! Besides the weather change, I have taken on some care giving duties along with cat sitting and tending to an elderly relative's home whilst she is recuperating. The days are really flying by now. I have never had a cat but thankfully she has completely warmed up to me and looks for me every day (it couldn't be because I am feeding her could it?? :):)

 And before the art part- I have the reveal of the bird book/napkin stash giveaway winner....

 Congrats Nan!!!  Please email me with your snail mail addy and I will get it out to you as soon as I can. Thank you to all who entered. I wish I had one to give to each of you.

  For the Simon Wednesday Challenge ( theme is Snow White) and the Simon Monday Challenge (It's a Stitch Up) I made this CAS card:

 Products; small white notecard; white cardstock; Distress Ink- Antique Linen; Versafine ink- Onyx Black; Basically Bricks Stencil (490); sentiment (Papertrey Ink- Sending You set); stitched rectangles dies (Our Daily Bread Designs); Wildflowers dies (Sizzix); Spellbinders Die Cut Machine; foam tape.

 I got some happy mail:

This map art calendar created by Denthe (Denise)! I ordered it as soon as it was available. And let me tell you , not only is the quality of color and cardstock excellent, Denise's amazing art is FABULOUS!!! Very thoughtful imagery and sentiments for each month. I love it!! You can click on this link to take you to the calendar and pages included.

 It's about time I show you my first half of November calendar spread:

The individual art page:

 and a detail shot:

 This is from a You Tube session with" Painting With Jane". Birch trees using a palette knife. As I was moving along, in the beginning I kept thinking how awful it was looking  but I persevered and by the end I was so happy with the results, I learned a LOT, and I love palette knife painting!!

 My last journal page is meant for Art Journal Journey (theme is 101 Ways To Keep Warm); Creative Artiste Mixed Media Challenge #32; Paint  Party Friday; and T Stands for Tuesday.

 Products: spray inks; gesso; modeling paste; Archival Sepia ink; colored pencil; Darkroom Door Coffee Time stamp set; Cubist stencil(TCW); paper flower; paper doily.

  Wishing you all comfort and warmth.

        " Like the sun, we are attracted to people who shine with warmth and brightness. "
                                                                      Anthony Douglas Williams

Monday, November 6, 2017

Combining Art With a Giveaway

  Good day all! My sincerest thanks to those of you who left such thoughtful comments and answers to the ?? in my last post. So heartwarming.

  We had one chilly day last week which was enough to make me bundle up a bit, think warm thoughts, and even make a Christmas tag:

Sharing with Tag Tuesday (theme is "bookprint"), and the Simon Wednesday Challenge (Christmas Gift Tag).  Products: manila tag; dictionary page; felt angel (JoAnne Stores); poinsettia sticker (Nicole); Vintage Photo Distress ink; Stickles Peeled Paint glitter glue; xmas ticket (and old freebie digital print).

 Staying warm:

with my favorite mug of Peet's coffee, warm cozy slippers and Cuddl Duds wrap. Believe it or not the cold only lasted the day and we have since had either high 60's F or low 70's F. Still haven't had to clean up my summer flowers:) Sharing my cuppa with you and the T Stands For Tuesday gang at Altered Book Lover. Take a peek and check the variety of posts and see what they are up to-and then join in!

  The giveaway: You know I've been cleaning out everywhere. Well, I came across this chipboard book and just had to use it:

Fronts and backs of each "page":

 Each side was covered with a decorative napkin. I did the eyes with paint markers. Printed and glued down some of my many favorite quotes, then sponged the edges with black ink. And guess what? I found another of these books-hence my giveaway!

 If you would like a chance to win the book along with a selection of napkins please just let me know in the comments and I will choose a winner at random. Please note-this is only open to those with USA addresses. I went to check the cost at the post office before making this decision , and sadly it was ridiculously high to send overseas-despite the light weight and size!! Sorry.

 And lastly I have a journal page inspired by the new theme this month at Art Journal Journey- 101 Ways to Keep Warm- hosted by Chris. Isn't it a lovely theme? Also sharing with Moo Mania and More (theme is Make it Feminine), Creative Artiste Mixed Media Challenge #32, and of course, Paint Party Friday!

 Products: gesso; acrylic paints; spray inks; dictionary page; white cardstock;  stamps Wall Art Set-Wow!, Bokeh Set- Ellen Hutson, Scribble Faces-Dina Wakley; Tim Holtz layering stencil-Honeycomb; Crafters Workshop stencil; Archival inks- Buttercup, Jet Black); Fude Ball black pen.

 That's it for now. Be well, be warm, and I'll be seeing you:)

             All evil vanishes for he who keeps the sun in his heart.    Hindu Proverb

Monday, October 30, 2017

A Big Mix Of Subjects

 Lots to share for this week so I'll just begin - with this birthday card for a friend:

 Products: lg white notecard; blue, green, yellow, pink cardstock; patterned paper; happy birthday/balloons die set (Our Daily Bread Designs); Spellbinders die cut machine; Versafine Onyx Black in; Versamark ink (Tsukineko); floral stamp (Magenta); assorted rhinestones.

 Linking with the Simon Wednesday Challenge (Anything Goes).

For T Stands For Tuesday I have a few pics from a local winery friends and I visited earlier this month- Black River Farms Winery:

                                                      the tasting bar

                                                      I liked this sign

                                upper level tasting room for private parties

                                  one corner of the vineyard

me and hubby on left along with the friends we go to the beach with for a week every August. The wine was OK but a bit sweet (even the dry ones) and to me local state wines around our area just don't have the depth and richness I enjoy. We had a fun time tho and the owners were really nice, giving us a tour and talk about their equipment and process. Speaking of friends,  Tuesday will be busy for me as I am hosting lunch for my BFFS since elementary(primary) school. Guaranteed fun and lots of laughs!

 I have one more Halloween themed journal page (part of my October calendar journal):

 My page was painted after watching the Art Sherpa You Tube video "Day and Night Cats Willow Tree".  I took the main ideas but changed it a bit :)  Joining Moo Mania and More (theme is Halloween) and Paint Party Friday.

 Going off the art track here- just for a bit , and then I'll end with another journal page.

 This is my cleaned up main art table:

 I am continuing the clean up, clean out, letting go, and purging... and not just things.
Last Friday morning I made the decision to let go of a relationship that was no longer serving me. It has taken me a long time to acknowledge this and although my most supportive tribe has known it quite awhile I had to come to this myself. I was continually compromising over and over again, accepting constant excuses for disappointing behaviors with no apologies. I now realize looking back that this person is  turning a blind eye as to how their actions have affected all of their relationships in one way or another. Although it wasn't easy because there were good times too I know in my heart I made the right decision. Another life lesson that will only help me grow. You know that adage-people come into your life- for a reason, a season, or a lifetime.
 Thanks for listening and now I really would love to hear from you- have you ever had to let go of a friendship that was no longer serving you? How did you handle it? How did you feel afterwards?

 And here is another journal page:

 Background is a combination of Distress Oxide and Distress inks and stencils. Acrylic paint spatters. Silhouette wildflowers stencil (Magenta), Mosaic layering stencil (Tim Holtz), bird stencil (Stencil Girl), circle stamps (Ellen Hutson), stitches stamps (Whimsy stamps), bee stamp (Magenta), Stickles glitter glue.
 Joining Art Journal Journey (thank you Elke for hosting your theme of "Landscapes of the Soul" this month!); Mix It Monthly (autumn); the Simon Monday Challenge (All creatures Great and Small); Try It on Tuesday (Circles), and Paint Party Friday! Talk about serendipity-I didn't know this page would link to so many challenges when I made it over the weekend:)

 Will be around to see what you all are up to - the best part of blogging to me is the connecting!
Leaving you with some words of wisdom...

" Buddhism teaches that joy and happiness arise from letting go. Please sit down and take inventory of your life. There are things you've been hanging on to that really are not useful and deprive you of your freedom. Find the courage to let them go."        Thich Nhat Hanh

Monday, October 23, 2017

From Spooky To Spiritual

Hi there peeps! How are things in your neck of the woods? We have continued to enjoy gorgeous summer like weather later than I can ever remember-awesome! It's about to change quickly though but I'm ready for it.

 Halloween is fast approaching so I have another tag to share:

 Products: manila tag (Ranger); patterned paper (Me and My Big Ideas); Versafine Onyx Black ink; Tim Holtz paper Dolls; Spooky tag and enamel dot (Recollections); Spiders/web stickers (the Paper Studio); bird stickers (Nicole). Joining Moo Mania and More (Halloween); Tag Tuesday (Halloween/Autumn); and the Simon Monday Challenge (Monochrome).

 I have one last meal to share from our last visit to Cape May. We always have one nice dinner at The Merion Inn - a really lovely place we have been going to for a number of years now. The ambiance is lovely as is the piano entertainment, and the food is always excellent!

                                              Caesar Salad - my favorite!

         Crab stuffed flounder for Bill (and it was a very generous portion),

     and broiled scallops, jasmine rice and green beans for me. I pretty much always go with scallops when we dine here.  Sorry if I made you hungry again. Perhaps for next week for the T Stands For Tuesday gang it'll just be tea :)

 And I have a special journal page to share. First I wish to thank Susi for sharing her beautiful page along with the link for the free workshop provided by Laly Mille ( merci beaucoup Laly!). Unfortunately it was offered only for the week and is no longer available but it was a nice introduction representing the artist, her style, and her spirituality combined. And it couldn't have come to me at a more perfect time.

 I was not in a good place last Friday and decided to go for a long walk to clear my mind. I came back and went online and went to Susi's latest post. I went to the link she provided and that was it. I began to listen to Laly. I prepared myself by putting a combination of essential oils in my diffuser (Sage-for cleansing, Cypress - for opening, and Lemongrass- for inspiring). Then I chose two cards from my Law Of Attraction deck to inspire me:

 I went through the breathing, meditating and visualizing guided by Laly and I was completely in the zone. Immediately after watching the art instruction video (Your True North Star) I went up to my room to create my page.

This doesn't look anything like Laly's example even though it began that way. Somehow my piece took on a life of its own, the layers of writing and collage papers pretty much got covered up with paint layers and became Impressionistic. I wasn't able to capture the glitter on my north star in my photo but it's there. I love that every time I look at this page it will take me to my calming center, AND my true north star.  Sharing with Art Journal Journey (Landscapes of the Soul hosted this month by Elke), and Paint Party Friday. Wishing you a connection to YOUR true north star.

            " Listen! The wind is rising, and the air is wild with leaves,
              we have had our summer evenings,
              now for October eves!"    
                                                         Humbert Wolfe