25 May 2012

With a Heavy Heart

My heart is heavy tonight.  After coming home from dinner in town we found our dear, dear Dudley lying by the deck.  We immediately knew he had passed away.

Although he was getting old, we had chosen to believe he would be with us always.  Certainly he had that kind of attitude.  He was kind of fat, lazy when he wanted to be and aloof when he thought you needed to be ignored.

But, he always came and sat with us anytime we were outside.  He was my escort when hanging out the laundry.  Keeping my legs wrapped up with cattail was his mission and he did it well.  He loved to be rolled on his back and have his belly rubbed and when I rubbed his ears, he became almost ecstatic!

His full name was Dudley Dooright, although we often called him Duds.  I fondly called him Studley Dudley even though he'd been neutered years ago.

I've had many cats through the years and some of them for many years.  But, I've never had a cat that was so much a friend.  Even my non-cat-person husband adored him.  Nobody better mess with Dudley.  Joe would line you out if you did. 

I've cried like a baby and although I also know that time will heal, I will always fondly remember that chunk of yellow tabby called Dudley.

Dudley Dooright 1999-2012

15 May 2012

Renaissance Festival and Blooms

 It's been quite some time since I've had the chance to visit.   To say it's been busy around here would be an understatement.  Of course, with that being said, I know everyone is busy.  Seems like we meet ourselves coming around the bend and frankly, I just don't know how to slow things down.  Seems like I'm just too tired after everything that needed to get done got done to stop long enough to take a few moments to breath and visit with you.

If any of you have any suggestions for time management, please, don't be shy about sharing!  It seems that I'm not the only one that feels like a hamster on a wheel.  My art has almost slowed to a stop and because of that, I'm a little grouchy with those that deserve it least.  Am I the only one that gets in a not so stellar attitude when creative time is snatched away?  Somehow, I think a lot of creative people are the same way. 
(At least, I hope so!  I'd hate to be the only creative-time-starved curmudgeon!)

My roses have been a bright spot though and the Joseph's Coat bloom above is an example.  It's amazing to watch how the colors change from bud to bloom!

Got this shot of a swallowtail butterfly on my lilac earlier in the spring.  I miss the delightful smell of the lilacs on the breeze.  Spring was entirely too short!!

My hubby and I did take out time to go to the Renaissance Festival at the Castle at Muskogee, OK. It was quite an experience!! I'd never been to one and there were people that were so totally in character, it was amazing. There were also people dressed in things I just don't think they wore then. Some really strange stuff. But overall, it was a lot of fun and if you live near the Muskogee area take the time to go. It runs every weekend in May.

This lady was so delightful to watch.  She was totally in character and having a great time!

I think this "lady" embarassed my hubby just a little!!  She winked at me behind his back and started flirting with him.  His reaction was priceless!

Gotta' run for now and hope it won't be quite so long 'till next time!!

03 March 2012

Might Be Awhile

FYI:  Might be awhile before I do much more posting.  Really got the ball rolling on my medical transcription school and don't want to drop it.  So, until I get it all done, I'm gonna have to leave the blog alone.  Hope everyone who is following will hang with me until I can get the job done and get back to it.

I'll still be doing some art stuff (don't think I could give that up!!), so when I get back to it, I should have a few things to share.

Keep drawing, painting and blogging!!! AND...I'll be back!!!

03 February 2012

Ink Test

Where does the time go?!  I turned around to do one thing and suddenly it was several days later!!  Thought I had a handle on it, but turns out I was wrong.  There has been a lot of work going on in the Medical Transcription classes.  Since this is something that will be the "day job" and help pay bills I kinda' decided it should come first.  Got the train rolling and am making quite a bit of headway.  Since I don't want to loose that precious momentum,  I probably won't be posting a lot for awhile.

But, before I disappear for a week or two, thought I'd post a few of the "arty" things I've been doing.

Got to pick up some new inks and since I love pen & ink with watercolor wash I decided I'd better test them to see if they run.  Here's the results:

As you can see the Windsor and Newton inks are not run resistant!  The Noodler's black, Speedball super black india and Higgins white didn't.  I wouldn't put the Higgins or Speedball in a fountain pen, but they work great in dip pens!

I did the same type of test on pens and here's how that came out:

The Pigma and Pitt black and sepia; and Sharpie white water-based poster paint pens were all water resistant.


Been working on making my own rubber stamps.  A couple of years ago I had bought some inexpensive wood carving tools for my hubby that he never did anything with.  So, I figured if they would carve wood, they would carve art gum erasers.  I love how they came out!  Here's a pic of the stamps and the images they made.

The big one of course isn't a gum eraser.  I got the material at Hobby Lobby and don't remember what it was called.  It can be found in the Speedball linoleum cutting supplies.  It's really soft and cuts like butter.
Got some linoleum sheets yesterday to give them a try.  When I get time to do them, I'll let 'ya know how it works.
It's a lot of fun and I recommend making your own stamps.  That way, you own the copyright on them, so you're free to use them any way you want!

These are a couple of mixed media pieces and some sketching done at church.


Well, I guess it's time to get my nose back in my book and switch over to the left brain!

so, 'till next time-

26 January 2012

Been Awhile...

Hey everybody!  It's been awhile since I've visited with you.  It's been crazy busy around here for some reason.  Not as much art being done as I'd like, but there's been a lot of family stuff that's had to get done. 

Music has taken a lot of time and have a couple of new songs written.  I'm kind of cyclical about things.  Art takes first place for awhile, then music, and back again.  My favorite music is Bluegrass gospel, but will listen to ALMOST anything.  Can't say I'm a big fan of rap, but I'm kinda thinkin' the rap world doesn't really care!

Also very busy working on my Medical Transcription training.  Finished up another section and will be starting Pharmacology tomorrow.  Looking forward to getting it done.  Ready to be gainfully employed.  But, the new college semester started and helping baby-sit our granddaughter so our wonderful daughter in law can finish up her education.  So, I guess full-time work wouldn't work out right now anyway.

Should have some pics of some art-journaling I've been working on posted in the next day or so.  I'm still working on that "project" I posted earlier.  Not sure which way I'm going to go with it right now, so it's kind of on the back burner.  Maybe inspiration will hit and it'll come together soon. 

So...'till next time-

13 January 2012

Mixing Media

Hey everybody!  It was a bitter cold night in our neck of the woods last night, but it warmed a little today.  I know a lot of folks don't like cold weather but, hot weather makes me so miserable, I totally look forward to a bit of cooling off.

Being a basketball fan, I stayed up late last night to watch a late game.  It wasn't worth it.  My team got trashed but  hey...'ya win some, 'ya loose some.  My time would have been much better spent in my work room (although I did spend about half the game in there 'cause it was much more interesting than what was happening to my guys!).

Did manage to finish a couple of pieces of mixed media work.  I love this stuff 'cause it's pretty much anything goes.  You can really loosen up and just go with the it.  I love the fact that if you don't like what's happening you can just float on another layer of paint or maybe some gesso and go at it again.

In fact, these two pages were pretty crummy I thought, so I added a couple more layers of paint and just started adding embellishments.



If you'd like a good book about Art Journaling with mixed media check out
"The Art Journal Work-Shop" by Traci Bunkers

She also has a great website at www.TraciBunkers.com

I'll leave you tonight with a shot of my messy corner of the world!  Every now and then I dig out and find everything I've misplaced so I can go at it again.

So...'till next time-

12 January 2012


Well, yesterday we had Spring here in Arkansas!   Goriously beautiful!!  Temps in the 60's.  Even though I think about how awful summer may be if it gets this warm this early, I still enjoyed it.  Boy, is it a good thing I enjoyed it!

Spring disappeared overnight!!!

It is Sooooooo cold right now and has been all day.  In the low 20's and a wind that will literally suck the breath out of you!

But, oh, it was a wonderful day anyway!  As one facebook friend posted today..."don't forget to pray today, God didn't forget to wake you up"! 

My mother turned 82 today (so, that should give you a vague idea about my age! LOL)!  To celebrate, she got to take a 1 1/2 hour drive for a carotid artery Doppler checkup!  Fun, huh?  Had to leave around 7 a.m. but, even though it was VERY cold, it was a beautiful, clear day. 

Plus, and this is a big plus, this town has a Hobby Lobby!  Woo-hoo!  And a bigger plus, I had $50 in my pocket my mother had given me at Christmas, so with the 40% off coupon (LOVE, LOVE, LOVE those coupons), the clearance section and pastel sets on sale at 30% off I had a field day!  Plus, hubby went in with me(walking all over the store is too tough for my mother, so she waited in the car) and since I just happened to have an extra coupon....

...I was fortunate enough to come home with a new small set of pastels; a set of eight bottles of Windsor and Newton inks; a brayer which I'd been needing for awhile; two bottles of liquid watercolor (clearance); a journal for a friend; a bottle of Higgins white ink (clearance); a bottle of transparent red ink(clearance); and a wind chime for my mother!    What a haul for $50!!!

After Hobby Lobby, had to make a trip to Book-a-Million (don't have any book or craft stores in our little town).  These are usually the only stores I care about going to when we go out of town as I rarely clothes shop (HATE it!), so after the book store, we decided get some lunch and motor on back home. 


Now...I got plans for tomorrow!!  Have learned to be flexible with plans but if all goes well...

First off, I've decided I must make a "bucket list".  I had done one, although they weren't called "bucket lists" then, years ago when I was around 13 years old.  I lost it somewhere down the line and would LOVE to have it back.  Don't remember much that was on it, except that I would someday live on a 1000 acre ranch and in the mountains.  I didn't get the ranch, but I DID get 40 acres in the mountains.  Works for me!!!

(View out my north window)

I've been working on some mixed media journal pages.  Trying to learn to loosen up and just "do".  I tend to work on 4-6 pages at a time when I do mixed media, so I don't have any finished pages to post right now.  As soon as I get some done, I'll get them on here.


Got my workspace cleaned up enough to work tomorrow, and ready to settle in with a good book for now and listen to the wind whistle around the house.  So....

'till next time-
(Lillies from my garden a few years ago!  I usuallly LOVE winter,
but already thinking Spring!!)

09 January 2012

Oh Blah!

It's one of "those" days.  One of those days I just don't know what to do with.
It seems that every time I get a start on something, I find myself looking out into nowhere and getting nothing done.  It started out as an errand day, which always tends to turn into a "time-wasted" day.  I used to be so unaware of these kinds of days, but as I get older, I am so very, VERY aware of them.  And they seem to come more and more.

I have noticed that if I get my Bible study done first thing in the morning, I am much more productive throughout the day.  It's as if my mind cannot focus if I don't do what I know I'm supposed to do first.  Focusing is such a difficult thing to do.  As soon as I sit down to work on something, my silly mind says there's something over here to do.  "Wouldn't you rather be doing this?"  And as sure as I decide that, yes, I WOULD rather do that!  Bam!  Look over here! Here's a project you haven't worked on in a while!!

Then, I look at the clock and I've "WASTED"  (ugh...wasted!!!) two or three hours!

This MUST stop!  There is so much art to do, so much music to write (and play), so much reading to be done...SLAP...SLAP....ok...that should do it!

I will close this post,  get into 1st Timothy and study and then do some art!!
Pray for me to focus!!  I know you will! 

Oh, and Teri, I HAVE finished my first research project in Labratory and Diagnostics.  One project and one final to go!! 

'till next time-

05 January 2012

Well,  ole man sun has set and the chill is seeping in.  I had to stop and ask myself today what month it was!  Honestly, if I didn't know better I would have thought it was May!  It got so warm at one point, I actually had to wipe sweat from my forehead!!  But, it's cooled off and the wind is bending the trees, so it's acting a little more like winter tonight.


Today was a busy day, but one of those kinds of days where you work like crazy and get nowhere!  I did manage to get two more chapters done on my medical transcription course.  Making a little progress! Planning to do three tomorrow.

I also got to add some watercolor to some sketches in my journal.

The next picture is of my little Altoids tin watercolor set. 
 You can find a tutorial at

Well, it's getting kind of late and since my dogs barked at coyotes and deer coming up into the yard all night last night, I'd better call it a night.  It seems I usually get more accomplished at night, but since most of the world operates on a day-time schedule, I'm expected to comply with them at least to some degree.  So goodnight all-

'till next time-

03 January 2012

On a Roll!!

Hey!! Two days in a row!  Gonna have to stop this.  I'm feeling efficient and that's a feeling I've rarely had in my life.  I'm usually the one who skids in at the last minute with that nagging "I forgot something" thought that lingers 'till I get home.  Then, I usually find out I DID forget something. 

But, maybe you'll be able to glean something from today's post. 

Several years ago, I was searching for something to store my brushes in and being "fiscally conservative", I refused to spend a lot of money for it.  It had to be able to hold several brushes and travel well.  It had to breathe to allow the brushes to dry and not get moldy.

While my hubby was working up in northern (WAY NORTHERN) Minnesota a couple of years ago, we took a short day trip over to Bemidji.  The little town he was working in didn't have any kind of craft stores (kind of like being at home!) so when I found a Jo-Ann fabric store, I pleaded with him to stop.  While getting my "art and craft" fix I found a bamboo placemat.  It kind of rolled up in my hand when I picked it up and I realized it would make the perfect brush holder. 

So, I left with a placemat, two kinds of ribbon, needles and STRONG thread, glue and black elastic.

It was tough to sew as the needle wasn't too fond of going through the elastic, but after a few hours of perserverance and a couple of sore fingers, I had a perfect brush holder!

I stiched the elastic leaving enough room to slip my brush in, but not enough room to be loose.




The wide ribbon I glued to the outside and used the narrow ribbon to wrap around the whole thing and tie.


Hope this was helpful to you in some way!

'till next time-

02 January 2012

Welcome 2012

It seems like it's been months since I last visited with everyone.  I do believe that this year I discovered why there is a song called "The Twelve Days of Christmas"!  Due to the fact that most of the family activities had to wait until after the 25th, we finished up the last get together Dec. 30th with my
husband's family.


We've made some additions around the farm too.
We now are owned by a llama and three goats.



(Still have to edit the goat pics)


Three turkeys and seven more chickens.


(No pics of the turkeys yet!)


That makes about 30 hens.  If we could just convince them to lay now.
Seems they've decided to take the winter off.
Oh well, they're still the best insect control I've ever found!!


I've had a small upset also. 
My waterbrushes are missing. 
If I was Matlock or Perry Mason,
I would have this figured out, but I'm not.
My sketchbook, watercolor set, pens, pencil and paper towels in
plastic bag are exactly where I used them last. 
 The two water brushes...GONE!
Can't find them anywhere!
I'm at a total loss as to where they could be.  I'm afraid they are
casualties of the after Christmas cleanup.
Which means, I can probably kiss them goodbye!

I haven't even added any color to any sketches because I'm so spoiled to they're ease of use!!  I just LOVE them! 





This is one I did before I lost my brushes!


I think tomorrow I'll break out the traditional brushes and do
some color splashing!! 


Teri, a report for you:  I have finished Medical Terminology (FINALLY!!) and have moved on to Laboratory.  They give me 4 weeks, but I'm pushing to be done with it in 3 so I can move on.  Getting there!!


Hope everyone had a wonderful and joyous Christmas season and pray that God will bless you in 2012!

'till next time-