Sunday, June 30, 2019

Sunday Stories

the writing prompt is from the Sunday whirl

I do these like I paint or quilt... as a creative opportunity. My goal is to use the words, and my mind to create a little story that is complete in itself

He held the tail end of the rope in one hand, and struck a match with her other.

He thought, I will get camp set up before dark, and suddenly everything became priority. He was the kind of guy who could not let down his team, who would do whatever was needed to make something work. This exercise in bonding was no different.

He held the rope taut while his teammate drove in the stake, and touched the match to the pile of kindling for their fire. It was getting dark, and they were running low on energy, their tank was running dry. He searched for words in his mind that would encourage the others, and wanted to create an atmosphere of excitement not panic. None of them were outdoorsy but the big boss had decided they needed to build camaraderie, so here they were.

Hungry tired in the heat, with a task in front of comfort. The air was tense with the collective worry and exhaustion.  He'd felt this energy in the workroom before, when they were working into the night on a task and attention started to splinter off into individual needs instead of creative group think they needed to finish.

The current need was to build a safe place to spend the night, and they needed each person to contribute their all. So like their daily work, he now understood the reasoning behind this exercise.

He looked to his team, and knew he must ignore the mosquitoes biting into his veins, and pull his attention back to the tasks, and inspire his group to get this done. And do it with humor and cooperation.
No man is an island, we must pool our knowledge and resources to tackle a problem together. We must respect other opinions and learn to best use each other's resources in order to succeed. We have to see the value each person brings to a task, so that we are stronger as a whole. We are all important.

 To be truly strong we must all see that and acknowledge each other.

Some bosses never understood it isn't about their own power, it's about the power of the group that matters and is lasting. Each person must know they are important to the whole, or they wouldn't follow a leader.

Building a camp, designing a program, finding a cure for cancer, or running a country. It's all built on respect and cooperation among each other. It's all the same isn't it?

The fire caught, and blazed up, the rope held on the stake keeping the tent firm and steady. A team mate yelled that they got all the sleeping bags into the tent and another said they had the items ready to put on a grill when the fire was at the right height. They were doing this. Together and he was proud.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

the (red, white and ) Blues

It's the last week of the rainbow scrap challenge for June, and the color to use was darker blue. Perfect to combine my chandelier blocks (from stripin' therapy) in Red White and Blue.
This week I cut out blues from my patriotic stash to use on a table runner.

It was all good til the quilting...
I did a lot of straight line quilting with silver metallic thread (sulky) that didn't even show as sparkly.

Then when I decided to do free motion stars around the outside, it all went south.

No problem, I chatted with a friend while I ripped it all out, oy vey!

too messy!
Went back and did a much preferred quilting of straight lines going toward the outside. Nice! Changed to haloishimmer thread that really looks sparkly and silver! Better!

Then I realized I could have used the backing for the edge treatment... and will even though I laid out the whole thing near the edge because I originally had a different binding planned. It's all workable though!
I just got a cool stars stencil at the quilt expo, so maybe some gold stars scattered around the white!
linking to

can I get a whoop whoop Fridays 
design wall Mondays at smallquiltsanddollquilts
blue mondays
oh Scrap Sundays
all seasons
 scrap happy Saturdays

Friday, June 28, 2019

paint party gentle with yourself

My sketchbook page on Wednesday began with a tutorial from Shayda Campbell on drawing a wreath. Mine looks different than hers of course, and I put words into it that I need to remember. The thing is, this woman came after the words led me to paint her. I quite enjoy her gesture of gentleness
I am my own worst critic... as if I need to be or do everything perfectly. I am enjoying the daily exercise of drawing and painting, knowing there will be another one the next day.
The daily art is my favorite til I do the next day's work! No, I still love her, with her soft focus, and the gesture of protecting her heart by being gentle with herself talk.

Where do you find inspiration for your art? I will be going along, living life, and notice some little detail I want to interpret by painting or quilting.
I was looking through the I Like posters yesterday and Canadian Needle Mama had a picture of a chipmunk... and that caught my artist's eye
I liked the strong contrast around the eyes, and the tiny hair flicks of different colors, so I thought I'd try to paint it. I had to simplify the composition so fewer grasses, no background. It's between a drawing and a painting, starting with a pencil sketch, then using my KOI paintbox and waterpen, and the staedtler gray fineliner for detail.
I added little bits of white gel pen as I continued to add or subtract details.
Then I decided I was in love with my white cosmos this year, the lines and the subtle shading. A white flower with so much detail would be challenging to capture on white paper...

I had watched a Shayda Campbell video on how to draw flowers. Start with a pencil sketch of a circle, and a larger circle around that. I  did the ratio of outer circle twice as large as inner one.
then I looked at my image and saw two forward petals, so I did those engaging both circles. Then added in others behind, sketched out little ovals for the center. Went over this with my staedtler gray pen and started mixing light blue gray for shadowing.
bits of gold, and yellow green for the center, little dashes with the pen for definition, white gel pen to finish some highlights. Subtle but there, a few draped buds... no greenery this time but I am amazed that I captured the feel of it! Shayda said in drawing, which is different from doodles because of intent, remember to shade the dark lines, then contour with wisps of lines. I'm learning as I go.
so this was my sketchbook page til I wanted to try my tombow gray marker to compare it to the fineliner pen...
little quick azaleas in the corner. Do I mess up my pretty painting page with experiments? Why not, it's a sketch book...
Then I wanted to try the tombow pens and made an orange sphere with dots, too strong! Wouldn't dilute with water... ugly... crap! I walked away, cross at myself for messing up a pretty page til... I said, what if I draw petals around it?
aha! Suddenly I liked it, a lot!  Even the little tombow colored leaves were pretty a mix of turquoise and lime green.
Yesterday's sketchbook page... I quite love doing this!
linking to
Pink Saturday!
off the wall Fridays

Thursday, June 27, 2019

I Like Thursday #147.... plants paints flamingos and a doodle

Welcome to this week's list of likes! It's all about the little things that make up our days isn't it?

I love our fountain brought from MD. DH fixed the leak it developed somewhere between MD and CO, so it's burbling away like a songbird. I put a tiny petunia in the top, now it looks just like we live in Italy, heh heh
Our neighborhood had a casino night, where they gave us each $500 play money, provided snacks, and we could enjoy meeting other neighbors. We went thinking we'd stay an hour but ended up spending the whole time having fun.
Here's Mr Not Afraid of color (in the green hat provided by the organizers)  playing roulette and even sometimes winning. We could trade in tickets for chances at prizes, I won a Khols gift certificate. Perfect!
I mostly played blackjack because my friends were there, and I loved the dealer. We laughed so much at that table, he could have been laughing at us...

We visited a farmer's Market in Southlands for the first time, and tasted really good....and really bad stuff, met other doggies, chatted with people. It poured rain that morning but this was during a lull in the rain.
The home made Greek items are about gone already
but the wine and cherry balsamic is still with us.
I'm still drawing or painting each morning... this was a tutorial by Shayda Campbell on drawing herbs.
I love watching youtube and then seeing my own work improve with the lessons! I like my steadtler pen in gray too. I've had this sketchbook for years but it's now filling up with beauty.

I remembered DH got me a paint box one year, full of different kinds of paint, inks, crayons, pencils. I dug it out and tried the watercolors and they are still good. I think it will be fun to try the acrylics sometime too.

I like being a part of the Paint Party Friday group now that I paint more often. I'm posting my latest paintings Fridays, please come visit!

I've been sewing, I like to sew little pieces to each other and make stuff with it lol. I made more chandelier blocks after trying out a red white and blue arrangement of my blocks last week. I may not use all the colors in one quilt, I may make an entire quilt out of the green, blue and aqua blocks. But I made more blue and red blocks and turned them into a 4th of July table runner. It's not quilted but the top is done and I used old R.W.& B. fabrics, so that was great. (the box is still full)

I like the book on CD playing in the studio right now... The Lake House by Morton

The Lake House by Kate Morton - Used (Very Good) - 1451649320 by Atria Books |
It's complex but intriguing to quilt to.

I like all my pretty flowers and vegetables that are flowering right now. I have flowers on the zucchini and beans, peppers and tomatoes. No fruit yet but flowers are the sign of hope!

I liked this group of 10 flamingo cakes that Sally at craftscaviescontras sent me

Milo's Moments
Hi Y'all! I like playing... I'm a player! I love my friend Gracie, a doodle, who moved in 10 months ago.

I can see her from my backyard, and if I didn't notice she barks hello so I can get my Mama to call for a play date. She's crazy about toys, and will pick up three at once!
I just like to run next to her, holding her tail in my mouth. She doesn't mind, and it's kind of like holding her paw. I also play hard with my friend Murphy who is little but mighty. He jumps up on my Daddy's lap which drives me crazy so I bark my head off, but he's the best for sheer running mates.
I like running into friends on walks, like last night I saw Parker my corgi friend. We didn't run but we still hung out, til I saw my human friend Otie. I can play with her like a dog! Ain't that grand? She makes me happy. Oh and I finally got Durango to understand I want to play, so he now doesn't try to bite me. I love his kids... maybe more than him!

This week's flamingo

Please visit these "I Like" Thursday posts:

Monday, June 24, 2019

the week ahead

One of my stamping experiments on fabric (4" square)
It's Monday again... life moves forward to another week.

Weather in Aurora CO
We seem to be in a rainy pattern. It rains daily here, sometimes all day off and on, or sunny turning to violent wind, rain and hail. As in life, I guess you make the most of sunshine moments, then cope with the rainy ones. The temps have been merciful at least in the last few days... between 60-80 mostly.

To Do
number one is put one foot in front of the other and face down my big fear of doctors... today it's the dentist and repairing my three front teeth. He strongly advised to do it all in one sitting.
I. Am. So. Scared.
I read a quote that growth comes from facing difficult situations and growth is important to life.
There are the usual daily home maintenance items, and there is comfort in routine. I love being home so I do not mind laundry, dishes, mopping.
Be gentle with myself as this is a hard week... be kind in my self talk, rest more, sit outside when I can, paint when I like, watch fun shows on tv, read magazines, pet my poodle-son, be quiet.
plant the iris bulbs a neighbor gave me and keep an eye on the vegetables!
watch my puppy playing with other dogs... and laugh at their antics
Gracie and Milo, sitting on the lawn... first comes love...

I hope to finally finish my night novel... it hasn't been great, not bad but not engaging and I forget to take another up, so each night I read this one. (Cake on a hot tin roof)

watching on TV and youtube
Amazing Race, Agatha Raisin, Time team, Mrs Maisel, Frankie and Grace, chopped junior, Master Chef, (screaming at) the bachelorette.
On youtube I am loving the tutorials of Shayda Campbell, and CreationsCeeCee.
link to video on youtube
My painting from the video lesson, so easy anyone can do one!

Fun experience last week
Our dealer was fast!
DH and I dragged ourselves to the neighborhood Casino night in the clubhouse, expecting to be there an hour and meet people. It was so much fun we stayed the whole night! Each of us was given $500 play money to use, and we got a ticket at the end of the night for each $100 we had left to win prizes.
I had no idea how to play roulette or craps and am no good at poker, but I sat at the blackjack table and laughed with my new friends and the dealer who was very informative. It was fun and I got to know my neighbors much better. DH ended up playing roulette and meeting other people.
I played for hours and had about 600 play bucks at the end! I won a gift card to Khols too!
What I learned:
you never know what might turn out to be fun, til you try!
I won't be gambling real money, it's not fun for me, but this was win win!

We went to the local farmer's market on Saturday and found these interesting items...
dessert wine (raspberry peach moscato), cherry balsamic vinegar, and lemongrass white balsamic

and  home-made from a Greek family...
awesome tabbouleh and hummus. (we supplied the plantain chips and crackers)


“Be soft. Do not let the world make you hard. Do not let pain make you hate. Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness.

Kurt Vonnegut 

Saturday, June 22, 2019

blue beaded curtain

Here are my Rainbow Scrap Challenge chandelier blocks (from Stitchin' Therapy blog) in dark blues.
Pretty! There's just something about blue... most people's favorite color.
as usual I tried to find pretty prints in the scrap bin, although I also try to find a scrap near the size I need to cut too.
I love a mix of tone, shade and pattern although these read almost the same
After making 14 (as I have a LOT of blue scraps) I pulled previous month's colors out and played a bit... here is an analogous color scheme with green, blue and aqua
now wouldn't that make a nice bed quilt?
Linking to
can I get a whoop whoop Fridays  
Esther's blog Wednesdays 
Let's be social Wednesdays 
Midweek makers wednesdays
design wall Mondays at smallquiltsanddollquilts
blue mondays
oh Scrap Sundays

Friday, June 21, 2019

paint party Friday Fabric, paper, ink, paint... it's all fun!

I've had a good time with color this week!
The poodle was from free coloring pages, an the font was from this free list of cool fonts

I used my tombow markers to color in letters done in sharpie
yesterday's session started with a little box from Michaels to hold my tiny stamps and stencils
As I chose ones to put in the little box, which is how I wish I could store all my stamps since it's one layer and easy to see, I tried some out on some scraps of fabric

using my fabrico markers to brush color onto the stamps...
to make art...

and the cute little stencils were used on my leftover painted daisies strip (used to finish my painted birds background!!)

I used a subtle blue fabrico marker to color in the fairy stencil, and the tan and pink ones for the mushrooms

it all worked, the markers on top of the painted fabric
I have been drawing or painting each morning, and loved finding the artist Shayda Campbell as she is clever and a great teacher. She has a large video collection of lessons on youtube!
She recommended a warm gray pen to outline, and shade with so I bought a staedtler triplus fineliner in gray and amazingly to me, I LOVE IT! I did all three with it above!
she teaches a lot of botanical lessons, and I combined a printed quote in one of mine (sorry for the warped shot of it)
quote by Antony Douglas, painting by me!

This is a trial of blending tombow markers on paper.... even a painted doodle can come out good, right?

Linking to
off the wall Fridays