Thursday, November 26, 2009

Being Thankful

Today I had a wonderful thanksgiving with my family - just me, the kids, my mom, sister, her boyfriend and her kids. So nice to have a stress-free thanksgiving with people you know love you and you love in return.
My daughter and I made a thanksgiving tree and hung "leaves" of thanks on it with tinsel. On the leaves we drew or wrote things we were thankful for. It's something that I'm thinking we'll keep up for awhile because my daughter really enjoyed adding more things to be thankful for on it. I have to say that I took the idea from a good friend of mine since she did this at home. - so, thank you Sandra.

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Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Faux Encaustic

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Today I learned a faux encaustic technique. Encaustic is an art technique using beeswax mixed with damar resin and pigment, or at least that's one recipe. I love the look of real encaustic but it is expensive and toxic, so I'll stick with the faux. I can't do all the cool things that I could do with real encaustic, but it was still fun to try. Anyway, this was my mini creation, just something small to test out the technique. I found a piece of cardboard that I painted and used as a background for the piece. Sadly, today was also the last day of art class for the year. Cheryl mentioned the possibility of doing an open studio series so that we can just hang out and get advise as we need it, but also have a space to create, which I know I could use.

Thursday, November 12, 2009


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Once I posted the picture, I realized I didn't like it and added more paint.

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Thought I'd share my tiny corner in my house where I make my mess. I've really got to figure out a way to organize it better. This is also my sewing table which makes it even worse.

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Three Little Birds

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I finished this painting today and chose the theme
Because I like Bob Marley
Because I needed some positive inspiration
Because this song has been in my head all week...
And just in case you don't know the words:

Three Little Birds
"Don't worry about a thing,
'Cause every little thing gonna be all right.
Singin': "Don't worry about a thing,
'Cause every little thing gonna be all right!"

Rise up this mornin',
Smiled with the risin' sun,
Three little birds
Pitch by my doorstep
Singin' sweet songs
Of melodies pure and true,
Sayin', ("This is my message to you-ou-ou:")

Singin': "Don't worry 'bout a thing,
'Cause every little thing gonna be all right."
Singin': "Don't worry (don't worry) 'bout a thing,
'Cause every little thing gonna be all right!"

Rise up this mornin',
Smiled with the risin' sun,
Three little birds
Pitch by my doorstep
Singin' sweet songs
Of melodies pure and true,
Sayin', "This is my message to you-ou-ou:"

You ge the picture.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

More than Green Eggs and Ham

"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."

Dr.Seuss was a genius!

Monday, November 9, 2009

The Joys and Sorrows of a New Car

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So, I got a new car last weekend and I am totally in love with it. It's a Mazda 5, which is what I fondly refer to as a Micro Minivan. It's about the size of my old Toyota Matrix, but the back doors slide open like a van and it has a 3rd row seat the folds flat. The gas mileage is awesome, I've been averaging close to 30mpg. Needless to say, since it is small and not heavy like my old van, it has some pick up and I don't tend to notice that I'm speeding, so I've already managed to get pulled over by the police. I was on my way to the DMV to renew my license and then planned on going to the bank to finalize the sales paperwork on the car when I was caught speeding. Luckily the cop was really kind and didn't give me a speeding ticket. Unfortunately, my license had been expired for a few months, so he gave me a ticket for the expired license. I was so close to the DMV office, that I could see them - I could've walked there in less than 5 minutes. Anyway, now I have a court date for next month and hopefully the DA will be kind enough to dismiss the ticket. The vultures have already come out in droves, though. I've already managed to get a ton of solicitations from lawyers. The two below are only a small sampling of what I've gotten.

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Frustration has set in. This is the third time I've gone over this painting with white. I just don't know what direction I want to take it. I keep mixing dark tones and just don't like the feeling it evokes after painting it. So, once again, another coat of white.

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Monday, November 2, 2009

Art Class - Creating Depth

So, I started my second set of art classes and this past week was learning about creating depth. Our teacher has a ton of magazine pics and photocopies for us to go through for ideas and inspiration or just to copy - I chose a grove of trees. I liked the picture because of the light that was coming in from behind the trees. I chose to do it in shades of blue and kept it simple. It's funny, when I finished it, I didn't care for it much and didn't think it looked right, but after it dried and I had time to contemplate it, I have to say, it turned out ok. I had tons of leftover paint and since I hate to just throw it away, I grabbed another canvas and painted over a picture that I had painted that I didn't care for anyway.

trees (depth study)
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leftover paint
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Friday, October 23, 2009

Autumn Changes

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I so love the Fall season. It's full of so many changes. It is the one time of the year when I think you truly see natures beauty. Alas, my Fall is full of changes this year too. Just in case you haven't figured it out from cryptic post, I am now a single mother, not by choice. My husband has made his choice to move on without me and I have to follow. I have so many regrets now (waiting to go to school until he finished, putting my career on hold for the kids) and now it will be more difficult for me to fulfill my dreams. But, I will not stop these changes for preventing me from doing the things I wanted to do, from achieving my dreams, and from finding the happiness that true love can bring. I didn't let him leave without telling him that I still loved him and wanted him to stay, I didn't want to regret not letting him know, but it wasn't enough. There is no one to blame but ourselves as we really allowed ourselves to drift so far apart that we were no longer on the same page. Hopefully, things will continue to be amicable, although I'm sure I haven't made things easy. I am amazed at how much anger I have inside right now mixed at the same time with a sense of relief. I guess I feel relief because I felt it coming for a long time. My focus is now directed at my two babies, 5 years old and 21 months old. I think I'm the saddest of all for them. My youngest will never really know his father the way the oldest does and my oldest knows how her father is and is missing him terribly, not that he is an absent father just that she is used to having him around all the time. Anyway, this will be the last time that I mention this as I cannot move forward when I am looking back.

I Will Survive

My one lonely daisy still surviving as the others have all faded to brown or wilted away. I feel a strange affinity to this one flower. You got to love a survivor.

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Thursday, October 22, 2009

Something to Make Your Skin Crawl

Just wanted to share my beautiful creepy, crawly that has invaded my garden - hence why my flower bed is now infested with weeds.

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Monday, October 19, 2009

Reflected Light

In progress. This started out taller than wider, but once I painted it, I felt it looked better displayed sideways.

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Touched by an Angel

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I have been touched by an angel today and feel the need to share. I have always been a very skeptical person, but today, I have to say, I have changed my way of thinking. Tonight my daughter wanted to go out to dinner and, since Perkins has free kids night, we went there (plus she loves breakfast food so I knew she'd eat well). When we sat down, I noticed a young man, maybe in his mid to late 20's, sitting by himself reading the newspaper and, for whatever reason, I had the thought that he looked like a very kind person (not something I would normally bother to think) and was surprised to see him sitting by himself. As we sat and waited for dinner to arrive, which took forever, my daughter complained about being hungry and she saw the waiter bring the man his food and asked where ours was. Of course, I had to make a smart comment about how they had to kill the cow in the back and it was taking awhile. The man laughed and made a comment about them being slow, but worth it. We made a little small talk back and forth and he said something like, "you must be exhausted by the time you get home with two kids" and I commented about how true that was, especially being just us. Anyway, he finished his dinner and left. Once we were done, we went to the front to pay for our dinner and was told by our waiter that the man had paid for our dinner and had bought the kids some cookies. I never got a chance to say thank you or anything, which makes his kind act seem to come truly from the heart, which was even more touching. Needless to say, I was in tears after that. There was no need for him to do that. I wasn't complaining about being broke or stressed with crazy kids (they were actually very well behaved). I was just having dinner with my kids and sharing a bit of conversation with a stranger. You don't seem to see much in peoples eyes now adays, with everyone always in a rush, absorbed in their own world and in their own stresses, but I saw something in his eyes the moment I saw him sitting at his table. I saw a real aurabella - a real good soul - and I will never forget it.

Friday, October 16, 2009


I should name this one "Flames for my camera" as that's where I feel like putting it. Anyway, enough about my frustrations. Two photos, same painting and neither photo really captures the painting.

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

ATC Dangles and Doodles

As promised, new pics.
These are some of my zentangles and doodles. Lousy pics, but I'll blame the camera.

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Tuesday, October 6, 2009


My last day of my art class was today and I got 2 pics to show for it. I'm not too happy with them but not terribly disappointed either. I named the first one "Conception". I love the way the paint makes it look like there is light coming from the center. My camera automatically ajust for lack of light and I didn't use a flash, so the brightness is not from a camera flash or a light shining down on it. I haven't come up with a name for the second one.

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No Art

Well, I haven't been at my best the last couple of weeks, mentally or physically, so I haven't been posting any art. I do have several new creations that I plan on posting soon, it's just a matter of getting that stupid new camera of mine to take a good picture. I consider myself a pretty tech savvy person, but this new camera has me stumped. It does too much automatically and it does it wrong. I just can't figure out a way to change the settings. Anyway, I'll be posting pics soon, just keep checking.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Dwell in the Past

It seems like silly advice, to dwell in the past when your relationship feels like it is falling apart. But, we should dwell in the past, in the perfect past of the relationship. The times when the picking and playfulness were all fun and not nagging and irritating. The times of the hugging, kissing, cuddling and sincere "I love you", instead of far and few between. The times before the kids, before the stress of a mortgage - before the stress of adulthood caught up and ruined everything. Remember the times when it was easy to let things go for the sake of mutual happiness and love. Just remembering the times that it was us and not you and me before it just doesn't matter anymore.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

My Life According to Shirley Manson (Garbage)

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I was tagged and just enjoyed doing this one way too much.

Using only song names from ONE ARTIST, answer these questions. Pass it on to 15 people you like and include me. You can't use the band I used. Try not to repeat a song title. It's a lot harder than you think! Repost as "my life according to (band name)"

Pick Your Artist
Shirley Manson (Garbage)

Are you a male or female:
Stupid Girl

Describe yourself:
Metal Heart

How do you feel:
I think I'm Paranoid

Describe where you currently live:
Happy Home

If you could go anywhere, where would you go:
Drive you Home

Your favorite form of transportation:
Run Baby Run

Current work status:
Not my Idea

Your best friend is:

You and your best friends are:

What's the weather like:
I'm Only Happy When it Rains

What's your favorite part of the day:
Cup of Coffee

If your life was a TV show, what would it be called:
Wicked Ways

What is life to you:
Temptation Waits

Your last/current relationship:

Your fear:
Nobody loves you

What is the best advice you have to give:
The Trick is to Keep Breathing

Thought for the Day:
Why Don't You Come Over

How I would like to die:
Sleep Together

My soul's present condition:
A Stroke of Luck

My motto:
Silence is Golden

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Art Travel Case

I got a vintage Samsonite hard train case off of Craigslist the other day for a steal. I'd been looking for one to carry my paint supplies for meetups or classes and was super excited when I got this one. I didn't really care for the color, so I decided to get all crafty. I'm not going to bother with a tutorial for several reasons: 1. I'm using a fabric and don't know how well that's really going to work, 2. It's all basic cut and paste, nothing special, 3. the most important reason, just based on past experience, I'll probably get it finished only to tear it apart in less than a month because I don't like it. I never completely think things through before I start on a project, so a lot of times it can look sloppy so I end up having to tweak it and redo some. It's far from finished and I already know that I'm going to have to redo a few items (the ribbon, paint), but I just couldn't wait. I'll be busy the rest of the week and on the weekend , which means it won't get finished until some time the middle of next week.

This is the original look with the items that I'm going to use on it - a cute cherry fabric, a red polka dot ribbon, and a really cool skull trim.

The "finished" results. I still need to finish painting out the trim and put some rubber feet on it. I also want to varnish over the entire thing, fabric and all, just to help protect it. The pictures really make it look like crap, but it is very cute in person.

Look at how much room I have inside. It still has the original zippered bag, which is conveniently lined in plastic.

Also, still has the original tray.

Not too pretty from behind and on close up, but I wanted you to be able to see the skull trim.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


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Art Class

I went to my first acrylic art class last night. Cheryl McCardle is the teacher and she is very enjoyable to listen to and watch. Sharing our work and critiquing are the part of the class that I do not look forward to having to be a participant. I've only recently started sharing any of my work, mostly due to my fellow bloggers and their sweet comments, but I still don't feel completely comfortable sharing it with others. Not that I have a problem with getting a critique, but it just seems awkward with other people I don't know. Anyway, wish me luck.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Finally - something fun to do downtown. I've managed to miss this every year, but my dh was kind enough to mention it. The entire idea behind it is so awesome - I can't wait to go. They showcase art, fashion, music, poetry, dance - you name it, they've got it. Hopefully I will leave inspired and ready to create.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Asian ATC

Had the urge to create another card before bed. I took a distressing ink pad and stamped it directly on the paper, covered part of the card with wax paper that I tore along the edge, tore some more of my wallpaper samples off and stamped it. I embossed all the exposed ink, except for the red ink. The wax paper gives the card a really cool look, kinda like encaustic. I might try to cover an entire card with the wax paper next time. With all the different paper and embossing, the card also has a neat texture.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Bloody ATC's

A couple of ATC's just in time for Halloween.

Painted acrylic background. The acrylic paint gives it a nice texture and sheen. Aged image on left and embossed blood on the teeth on the right card.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Feeling Crafty (with tutorial)

After scouring the web and not finding any designs I liked, I made my own ATC storage booklet. I am totally in love with it and already have the presentation board cut up for making several more, just gotta pick up some pretty papers. I've typed up a tutorial so that you can make your own. Please let me know if you have any questions and let me know if you make one and post on your own site so that I can visit and admire.

1. Gather your supplies. You'll need a heavy weight board, such as a presentation book, book board or chip board (or cut up some cardboard or a shoebox if you have some laying around), a pretty paper for the outside/inside lining of the book, a paper for the interior card holder, a strong heavy duty paste, permanent glue sticks, a ruler, a cutting blade or guillotine, cutting board.

2. Cut the board into a strip measuring 11" long and 3 3/4" wide. Cut the strip into 3 pieces with one of the pieces being 1" wide and the other two pieces being the exact same size. It comes out the some odd measurement, hence why I'm not typing that in. Glue the pieces onto the back of the paper that you are using as a cover, using the heavy duty glue. Make sure to leave approximately 1/8" between the pieces and leaving 1" around the edges. Fold in the 1" trim and cover with another piece of decorative paper on the interior.

3. Fold the interior paper so that it is 3 1/4" wide and glue, making a pocket. I know that cards are only 2.5" wide, but you want the pocket to be wider just in case you make/get some chunky ATC's. Cut into pieces 3" high. Glue the pieces together using the glue stick. Only glue the middle of the paper approximately 1" wide, so that when put together, it makes an accordion.

4. Glue papers onto interior of book cover, leaving a small gap at the bottom, maybe 1/8" from the bottom. Let dry and enjoy.

Side view

Finished (almost, see below)

Things I wish I did different:
-I forgot to add some sort of closure, either a ribbon or clasp. I can probably still add it, but will need to consider that it is mostly complete and don't want to damage the cover.
-I put too many slots inside the book. I should've only put maybe 20, I think I put 30-35. I haven't filled it yet but am certain that it will probably bulge when I do since I like dimension on my cards. I could've also made the spine wide to accommodate all the cards.
-Should've added some sort of cutout to the interior slots to help pull the cards out. Since it is 3" long and I have a gap at the bottom, I only have a tiny little lip at the top to pull the cards out, so it can be difficult.

As I said in the beginning, this is a design I created. I'm sure it's not unique but I would appreciate a credit back if you post tutorial to your site.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Cafe Latte vs. Cafe Au Lait

I'm not a huge coffee drinker, but here lately I've been getting in the habit of having one or two at work. At work we have a nifty machine that makes 20 or so different coffees and teas and you just push the button on the screen and it tells you what packets to put into the machine. I'll normally make a cafe latte with house blend coffee, but the other day when I stopped at the coffee shop and got one, I was told that is is made with a shot of espresso. I didn't put much thought into it until this weekend, after stopping at the coffee shop, my husband asked me what the difference was between a latte and an au lait. Me being me - I decided to find out.

Cafe au lait is equal parts milk and coffee
Cafe Latte is 1/3 espresso shot with 2/3 steamed milk

I guess you learn something new everyday!

Saturday, September 5, 2009


Long holiday weekend, so what better to do but make a mess at my craft/art station making ATC's:

Life is Comedy. Some days this is how I truly feel about life. Stamp ink background and pen drawing.

Nature. This one I totally LOVE. I got the bark off of a birch tree when went to Target and attached a stamped and embossed paper to it. You can't really see it, but the paper is a wallpaper sample graduation of green that I got from a sample book (purchased entire sample book for all of $3 at Scrap Exchange!!). The stamp was a gift which makes it even better.

Loteria. This is made from game pieces for Mexican Bingo, also known as Loteria. I used to love playing this with spare change when I lived in Texas. The images are so nice and vibrant in color. I painted the card blue, glued down the images from the game, gessoed over the entire thing, scraped some of the gesso off when it dried and embossed a pattern over it. Still needs something else, so I'll think on this one for a while.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Letting Go

My daughter just finished her first real week of kindergarten. I have to say I'm a pretty sad mommy right now. She seems so different now, so grown up. I remember seeing her right after her brother was born and thinking that she didn't look like the same girl as she was just hours earlier. She looked so much older than the little girl that she was and that is how I feel now. I look at her and can't see my sweet toddler/preschooler. Now she's a big girl and the way she speaks and carries herself is so different than it was just a few days before. I cannot talk to her like she is a baby anymore or try to explain things that I don't think she is capable of understand because it is already "I know Mommy, you don't have to tell me."
I did what I hoped that I wouldn't do - I cried, not just on the first day, but throughout the week when I would think about her being in school. I went to drop her off at her first day, fully expecting to walk her to her classroom and grateful, at the time, that she wanted to be a big girl and walk in by herself. As I watched her walking into the building, looking like a walking backpack because it was so large, I began to cry. While I was sitting at my desk working, I started thinking about her, wondering if she found her way to the right classroom, wondering if she got lost and was left standing in the hallway crying. So, I packed up my purse, got in the car and headed off to the school, trying to think of an excuse to be there. By the time I got there and went into the school office, I realized how obvious it was going to be as to why I was really there and managed to calm myself down enough to not request to see her. I tell my husband this story and he turns to my with a grin on his face and says, "you just need to let go." He's right, just a little.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

There Comes The Strangest Moment by Kate Light

There comes the strangest moment in your life,
when everything you thought before breaks free--
what you relied upon, as ground-rule and as rite
looks upside down from how it used to be.

Skin's gone pale, your brain is shedding cells,
you question every tenet you set down,
obedient thoughts have turned to infidels
and every verb desires to be a noun.

I want--my want. I love--my love. I'll stay
with you. I thought transitions were the best,
but I want what's here to never go away,
I'll make my peace, my bed, and kiss this breast...

Your heart's in retrograde. You simply have no choice.
Things people told you turn out to be true.
You have to hold that body, hear that voice.
You'd have sworn no one knew you more than you.

How many people thought you'd never change?
But here you are. It's beautiful. It's strange.

Monday, August 31, 2009


I had my first "meetup" this weekend with a group of ATC and altered art artist this weekend. It was so nice to share ideas and thoughts with others that have the same hobby. Since becoming a mommy, I just don't get out enough! Needless to say, I was totally inspired to create more cards.

ATC's for my pirate loving daughter. Excuse the quality of the photos, I still haven't figured out my new camera.
These are both ink with an iron-on patch embellishment.

Friday, August 28, 2009

35 for 35

Today is the day. 35 years have gone by and I still wonder who I am. I am very grateful for what I have. I am still healthy and happy and I have a home, a job and a family that I love. So, going back to not knowing who I am, I have created a list of who I want to be and what I want to do with my life. This is my list - 35 for 35.

  1. go back to school and get a degree

  2. continue expanding my art

  3. be more friendly and social

  4. make time for myself

  5. set goals and strive for them

  6. say what i mean and mean what i say

  7. find my passion

  8. join a social group

  9. write more

  10. laugh more

  11. be adventurous

  12. get fit and lose weight

  13. take my family to Puerto Rico and introduce them to my culture

  14. participate in life

  15. listen to my spirit

  16. find contentment with what I have

  17. garden more

  18. watch less TV

  19. declutter my space

  20. give more to my children of what they really need

  21. control my temper

  22. complain less

  23. remember God

  24. spend less

  25. save more

  26. be rid of debt

  27. foster this partnership that is my marriage

  28. leave it at the door

  29. be less judgemental

  30. spend time with my friends

  31. give myself permission to be me

  32. celebrate the holidays with my family

  33. appreciate my mother

  34. see my inner beauty

  35. well, this one I'll keep for myself...

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Artist Retreat

Yeah - I got invited to my first artist retreat. Unfortunately, I won't be going. I was invited by Jeri at Artful Gatherings - a wonderful website worth visiting. The retreat is in the Smokey Mountains in October - only the best time to go, but between my job and two kids, just not sure I can be prepared and create what I have to have ready before I go. Maybe some other time.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Overwhelmed by the world
She walks out into the darkness
Not knowing what she'll find.
The thick blood drops...
Cold and alone
She wants to turn around.
Looking at the light behind her, Is anyone there waiting?

Friday, August 21, 2009


I got my first batch (small, but still) of artist trading cards done and ready to post. Just 5 for now but considering I did 3 of these in the space of a few hours tonight with my daughter, I imagine it won't take long before I have quite a few more done. I have to say, I think I'm most excited that I got to use something that I've had sitting around for a few years. I've had a cute, never used magnetic Creative Memories board that I had gotten off Craigslist for free and just never knew what to do with it. Almost gave it away not too long ago. Managed to find where I had put it and hung it over my desk and it is perfect for the cards.
Don't critique too harsh.

This is the first one I did using a gel transfer technique for the Greek writing and decoupaged a photo image from a magazine and painted over it. I don't think I'm quite done with it, but am posting it for now.

One to inspire my daughter

Doodle tree

My attempt at abstract (or maybe cubism)

Folk Art bird

My freebie board, perfect for ATC's
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