Thirty Days of Everyday Life, Day 17: pizza oven!

Tried out our new pizza oven…it is an insert which goes in the grill Mark got for his birthday this year. I discovered a local pizzeria sells their dough raw in premeasured balls, so purchased several…  pizza number one did NOT look this charred… it was perfect and tasted great!! Yummers!! We are ready to (pizza) PARTY!!


Also received my ticket to Minnesota’s famous Junk Bonanza which will be in September… woo-hoo!!


Thirty Days of Everyday Life, Day 15: watercolor doodling practice with CreationsCeeCee

Just following a youtube tutorial again for ideas, inspiration, practice and play. (check out CreationsCeeCee!)


In this tutorial, she shows how she makes little doodle books to keep with her each day. She watercolors shapes on the pages, then doodles in ink later, as she finds opportunity.




Thirty Days of Everyday Life, Day 13: Storytime and thundershirts

The craft we made from Storytime today, and one of the cow themed books we read aloud. I never know how many kids to expect, but today there were close to 30.


There have been big thunderstorms the last few days… Emmett used his thundershirt again this evening. It does seem to help a little. At any rate he’s compliant when I put it on him, so I know he likes it. At 140 pounds, it’s both sad and a little humorous when a thunderbolt frightens him (poor dude), he’s so sturdy and secure looking himself.


I used some colored pencils and watercolor pencils for the children’s book cover. I enjoyed using them, but the process takes longer than just slapping some watercolor paint around, and I’m too lazy for it. So Emmett and the hat both got watercolor instead.


Thirty Days of Everyday Life, Day 12: a morning swim


As you are probably aware, my husband and I are owned by two newfoundland dogs… this morning when the dogs woke us up (as early as every other day), instead of an early morning walk, we took them out to the beach for a quick swim. (and a good rinse off at home after)


(That’s my attempt at Emmett swimming.) Emmett loved it, Clara tolerated it and DIDN’T SINK, which is a pretty good end result. And the rest of the day we mostly just goofed off. In fact, in the evening we were going to go out but some strong storms rolled through and we decided to chill with Emmett, because he’s afraid of thunder. I guess what I should have sketched was Emmett in his thunder shirt!


Thirty Days of Everyday Life, Day 11: Meet Joe.

This is Joe, my husband’s new best friend.


These are the ribs that Joe made. “Please, Joe, please… please do not make so many yummy ribs.”



I have included a picture of the REAL miniature watercolor tin, so you can see how adorable it is. I popped out the children’s paint tablets with the intention of filling it with my own, but only have two colors in there right now. I tried to find it online to link it for you, but all I succeeded in doing is finding a DIFFERENT small travel palette which I don’t need, but did purchase, because it is relatively inexpensive and looks like EXACTLY what I want. So… I stopped looking after that initial fiasco. It wasn’t going to go any better, I’d just find something else cool to buy, and not the $2.50 children’s paint tin. (But… HERE is the link to that supercool box available on Etsy…. )

Thirty Days of Everyday Life, Day 9: the Fourth of July!

I miss the way we celebrated July Fourth 20 years ago. But things have to change. In twenty years, I’ll miss the way we celebrate now, I guess!


A lovely day, really. 🙂

Thirty Days of Everyday Life: Day 8

I was lucky enough to accompany a friend to her citizenship test and interview in Norfolk. Then we relaxed at the restaurant (and ate!), and later spent some time sketching at MacArthur Center. MacArthur has brought in some giant games: chess, checkers, connect 4, a litebrite-like thing… all the kids seemed drawn to them. (Can’t blame them, I was too!) But I focused on the mermaid again, and she does seem improved, except perhaps a slightly shortened torso causing one arm to be shorter. Or maybe just a slightly too long arm? Either way, the GoDiva mermaid is one of my favorites in Norfolk, a city full of mermaids.


Thirty Days of Everyday Life: Day 7 (grocery shopping!)

Grocery shopping at Kroger has turned into a video game. It’s pretty cool. I hope all grocery stores try this. It saves loading the cart, unloading onto the belt, loading into bags (generally yucky plastic bags), loading into the car. At least, saves PART of it. Just load items into reusable bags in the cart after scanning, pay at the kiosk (without unloading. It’s already scanned), and load into the car. Ok, mostly it’s just fun.




Thirty Days of Everyday Life: Day 6 (watercolor practice)

No, I did not go up in three beautiful hot air balloons. Not in my REAL life, anyway. I watched several youtube videos. The Mind of Watercolor  explained how to create simple clouds, just painting a wet wash and lifting with a crumpled paper towel, smoothing a bit with a clean wet round brush:


I am already comfortable with this technique, but to be honest am still learning which pigments stain and which lift (lifting being crucial to the success of this technique) so tried it with both A. Gallo’s Lapis Lazuli and Daniel Smith’s Cerulean. (both non staining, very liftable) The Lapis Lazuli is basically ultramarine, but a very light, fragile color. Cerulean is also light, although can be laid down a little heavier than the Lapis. They both worked fine, just slightly different colors. Then I watched several videos by CreationsCeecee  … Her art is fun and her videos inspire me to play.

I tried a fun prickly flower, on the left, using colored pencil and watercolor. Colored pencils can provide a very nice accent:


and balloons on the right, with watercolor and ink:


I love artists showing me HOW to do what they do, and not minding if I copy to learn. Go try some!


I wasn’t trying to make the full page a picture, but was working in 4 quadrants. However, the right side kinda turned into one cohesive sketch, so I should have done that on the left as well!


Thirty Days of Everyday Life: Day 5, Blueberry pancakes

Sundays rock. The scent of maple syrup and bacon spreading through the house is just The Best AM gift. It lured me out of the studio and began a day of both work and relaxation. We spent the day at a team meeting, dinner with some of our kids, then home, and I forgot to journal until just before bed! So, a quick pancake sketch.