Tuesday, June 29, 2010

some background goodness

background goodness
i'm trying something different on these 3 paintings.  i was inspired by Mati Rose's blog, (who's art i totally love with all the great colors), when she showed how she was painting some backgrounds, but had no idea where they were going.  i found that idea very appealing and exciting.  my paintings are usually pretty planned out and i thought it would be fun to just throw some colors down and see where they take me.  surprisingly the purple one is my favorite,  which is usually my least favorite color to paint with.   i have no idea what i'm going to paint on them, right now i'm just enjoying staring at the different color combinations, we'll see what happens.

Monday, June 28, 2010


i joked the other day about doing a painting of a slug, but it made me think that it might be fun to paint a snail with a very colorful shell.  it made me wonder what is the difference between a snail and a slug?   i Googled this question and the only difference is that a snail has a shell on its back and of course both are garden pests!  that little shell on a snails back just makes it so much more attractive than a slug, plus the name slug isn't very welcoming either.  i haven't found any snails in my garden yet, though plenty of slugs. they haven't been a nuisance yet, but if they start eating all my tomatoes i'll have to figure out a way to get rid of them.  we've  had so much rain here lately it is prime habitat everywhere for them.  my mother-n-law told me to put out  saucers of beer in several spots and the slugs/snails will go to that, get drunk and drown!    

Saturday, June 26, 2010


bud unfurling
i can't believe we're already to the end of week 4 of Kelly Rae Robert's  e-course "Flying Lessons,"  and we only have one week left.  it's been an awesome course,  jam packed with so much information on getting your creative business going.  each post is overflowing with inspiration and tips.

i have definitely felt very overwhelmed from this course.  the start of this course coincided with my husbands hockey injury so that didn't help my stress level.  it's amazing how differently i handle stress/overwhelm at home, compared to how i handled it when i worked at the hospital as a nurse.  at home i get really tired and unmotivated, but at the hospital i would kick it into high gear and handle stress very well, even enjoying it.  i need to figure out how to transfer that mindset to home.

my art is something that is very personal to me and i have a hard time sharing it with others.  what if they don't like it or think that it isn't  good enough, do they think i'm wasting my time, maybe they think i should go back to work as a nurse and stop this daydreaming.   it's so hard not to have these feelings, but  i'm learning how to face my fears instead of ignoring them, to  reach for my dreams and finally listen to what my heart has been saying for the last 20 years,  i love art and i am an artist!  i'm tired of this internal battle of my fears against my dreams.   the last few days i've finally started to come out of my hazy overwhelm from the class and i'm feeling excited about all the possibilities that are out there, it's time to follow my hearts calling.  

over the last few weeks i've been thinking a lot about my fears, but realized that worse than any of my fears would be to go through life knowing that i never tried to do anything with my art.  (i already have quite a pile of art work stacked up in my attic, imagine a lifetime's worth just sitting up there collecting cobwebs, that's kind of a sad thought)

i don't have huge lofty goals for my art,  but here they are:
  • be able to be an artist and not go back to work as a nurse.  
  • open an etsy store
  • make some money to help pay for health insurance,(we have a $5000 deductible, ouch!), dental/vision
  • do some craft fairs
  • have a few gallery shows
  • get published in a few magazines
  • find my voice both online and offline
  • create, create, create
  • to have a local creative connective with other artists 
i feel it's time to push through my fears, dream big and take some action!  i'm excited to see what happens!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

homemade pretzels

Picnik collage
in the new Mary Jane's Farm  magazine they had a recipe for homemade soft pretzels, i had to give it a try
and boy were they good!  they were super easy to make and they are soft, moist, chewy and very  filling 
( i probably didn't need to eat a whole one, but i did  and it kind of sat like a rock in my tummy for awhile.)    it was just like the ones i would get at fairs or rollerskating when i was younger.  i think these are a little healthier and  i skipped the cheese sauce that i loved to dip them in, i might try a honey mustard dip with my next one.   there is a second recipe for hard pretzels, i'll have to try that one next since this one was such a success.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


 over at the three muses this week, the theme is "eyes."  i had a little bug eyed inspiration here, especially after seeing a beautiful dragonfly in my garden this past week.  luckily i saw him, otherwise i would have had to  paint a slug since there are so many of  those in my garden this year!

Monday, June 21, 2010

old tractor

old tractor
here's an old tractor based on a 1961 Farmall.  living in rural Wisconsin hardly a day goes by that i don't see a tractor go past the house or pass one in the field or on the road.  this is my piece for  Mixed Media Monday where the theme is "something old."  i'm not happy with this piece at all, but i thought i'd still share it. 

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Midsummer Fest

Picnik collage
today we went to the Midsummer Festival at Norskedalen Nature and Heritage Center.
Norskedalen means Norwegian Valley and here at the center they celebrate the Norwegian Heritage of the region while also sharing the beautiful natural environment that surrounds it.  lots of hiking trails, ponds, streams,   and old log and stone buildings made by the immigrants to this area. 
Picnik collage
We went on trails looking for trolls, caught bullfrogs, ate homemade ice cream, lefse, rommegrot (cream pudding), flat bread.  We watched Norwegian dancing and singing, basket making, and blacksmithing.  it was a very enjoyable afternoon.
Picnik collage

Thursday, June 17, 2010

strawberry bliss

it's strawberry season! 
strawberry patch
here's our strawberry patch where all this yummy goodness is coming from.  i've been spending anywhere from a hour to a hour and a half here everyday for the past week.  ( yes, i've got a bit of a backache!)
strawberry jam
many of the strawberries have been turned into scrumptious jam (21 pints!) to share with  friends and family. 
strawberry ice cream
best of all though, is the homemade strawberry ice cream!   yum yum!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

garden visitor

this beautiful dragonfly came to visit our garden this afternoon.   his wings were shining in the sun as he was flying about looking for bugs to eat.  he would do a little circle and then return back to the stake, and he did this over and over for close to 20 minutes, but then a bird came swooping down towards the dragonfly,  it missed, but the dragonfly flew away.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


wow, i can't believe i haven't posted for a week.   i guess i've been a little distracted with life.   here's my piece for the three muses this week, the theme is buttons and/or bows.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


 the theme this week at the three muses is to pick a song, any song!  at first i thought this might be kind of hard coming up with a song, since the choices are endless, but within a minute i knew what i wanted to do and what the piece would look like.  it's nice when that happens. 
one of my favorite artists is Mika, who  is a British singer-songwriter, (his music is very pop).  the song i chose is lollipop  from his 2007 album "Life in Cartoon Motion."  my kids and i love to dance around the living room listening to Mika, he's very fun to listen to.   the title "lollipop"  also belongs to a 1958 pop song by "The Chordettes" which is definitely better known (Lollipop Lollipop Oh Lolli Lolli Lolli Lollipop.)  with lollipops on the mind, of course Shirley Temple and "On the Good Ship Lollipop"  starts to play in my head.  so much sweetness everywhere! 

Sunday, June 6, 2010

so long poppies

this week at mixed media monday, the theme is "floral tributes."   there's  so many beautiful flowers in bloom in my yard right now, so much inspiration everywhere.  my poppies are already done blooming, they lasted just over a week, they come and go so fast!  i had to do one more painting of them because i'm just not ready to see them go,  it's like saying goodbye to a friend and knowing i won't see them for another year.  on the bright side though, i have so many other flowers which are now in full swing, and many more to look forward too.  at least  i won't be completely with out poppies for another year, the iceland poppy blooms later in the summer and they have such delicate paper thin petals and always inspire photos and paintings.

Friday, June 4, 2010

{this moment}

A Friday ritual started by Amanda Blake Soule, of Soule Mama
"A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week
A simple, special, extraordinary moment"strawberry season

Thursday, June 3, 2010

is this ok to have for supper?

it's been a pretty bad week for our family this week and with only 2 hours of sleep last night, this was all i could muster up for supper for the kids and i.  ( they did have some soup afterward too.)

it all started earlier in the week when fischer  had a tough  time with his allergies and had one night where his eyes were almost swollen shut from hives all over them.

on monday my nephew swallowed a quarter and ended up in the ER with it stuck in his throat.  they almost had to surgically remove it but luckily they were able to push it down and he is doing fine.

yesterday my mother-n-law had to put her dog to sleep unexpectedly.  her dog was 15 years old and had been steadily declining and then really took a turn for the worse overnight.  it's always hard loosing a pet even if they've had a great long life.

the real kicker for the week came last night when my husband was playing hockey and got hit in the mouth/face with a hockey puck, pretty brutal, so we were in the ER for a good portion of last night.  he's at home now, stable but very miserable.  he lost one tooth so far and there might be more to come,  his upper lip was split wide open, close to an inch up ( it was pretty gnarly to see), and he has multiple broken bones in his face (left cheek/ left eye orbit, left side of nose and his right upper jaw.)  monday he has to go in and have his jaw wired shut for a month and be on a liquid diet!  i'm going to have to research some good juicing recipes and blended meals, poor guy!  it's weird how bad things can happen all grouped together like this in such a short period of time, some sort of strange energy that is around us.  hopefully things will shift around here and some good energy will be flowing again.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

time for tea

time for tea.
the theme for this week at the three muses is  "time, "  which i feel i have a lack of lately.  for one, i can't believe that it is already june!  where does the time go?   our days are becoming so full.  with the warmer weather came busier days, weeks and weekends.   i've been going to bed later and getting up earlier.  why is it that as i've gotten older the time passes faster? i've become so aware of each new day, week , month, year, change of seasons and the changes within the seasons,  and i can't believe how fast my kids are growing!  i remember being a kid and thinking that time moved so slow, a week could feel like forever, that's not the case anymore.  with all this busyness, i sometimes have to remind myself to sit down with a nice cup of tea and take a little time out  from it all and read, draw, paint  or even just daydream a bit. 
 (sorry about the poor photo, there wasn't any daylight left when i finished it, lack of time!   i'll take a better one tomorrow.)   done!
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