Sunday, November 6, 2016

Good morning friends!
It is a beautiful and crisp Sunday morning. The sun is shining. One thing I love about being semi retired is the freedom of time to work on my blog. Although decisions haven't been made whether or not to move I am still painting, still teaching and enjoying it all.

Here is a little tidbit of painting info for you. I try to keep my watercolors intricate and detailed but simple. For example, a single flower such as this Texas bluebonnet shown here that I completed in 2015 doesn't have a lot going on around it. Notice there are hints of bluebonnets lightly painted in the background and only the single detailed one in the front. This is where the eye is drawn. Simplicity does have force. Your painting doesn't have to be elaborate. Simplicity is both desirable and affordable.

I have a couple of intricate but simple paintings I'm working on that I will share with you in stages over the next couple of weeks. Until then have a bless week!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Good morning my friends! It is a beautiful Fall day here in Western Pennsylvania. The leaves have begun to change into brilliant yellows, oranges and reds; the woods are ablaze with color and the air is crisp!

I felt my blog needed a change, a "Refreshed Perspective" so to speak! Sometimes we need to take a fresh look from a different angle and work from there. In September, at the urging from friend, I began carrying around a journal and a few art supplies with me in our car (I talked about this in a previous post). When I'm in a doctor's office or having to wait for a length of time I would sketch in the journal about what I was seeing, doing or not doing—you get the picture. By doing this, I not only exercise and improve my drawing skills I am making a diary of my thoughts and daily excursions to hand down to a family member. My reason for this is two-fold, to bless the receiver with something intriguing and fun, and I want to share a part of me and my life's insights and wisdom with others.

I'm standing at a crossroads in my life. Part of me is totally ready to retire, the other part not so sure. I feel like I'm hanging in limbo trying to decide whether or not to move, to be a winter bird or just stay put. Lots of decisions to make and down sizing to do. We've been researching different areas of the country, looking at costs of living, taxes etc. I'm a little overwhelmed. No matter what decisions we make I will still be painting and sharing those techniques and insights on my blog and website.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Pastor Appreciation Day is October 9th and runs through to October 15th. The reason I am sharing this with you is this; without them it would be near impossible to make it through life. I say near impossible because God is always with us regardless and will hold us up. But the presence of my pastor when tragedy lands on my doorstep is more than comforting, more than mere words can describe. They are there for us whether we want them there or not, which is hard to fathom I know, however, there are people who don't want anything to do with pastors or with God. I feel sorry for them. My husband and I have been attending Community Alliance Church now for four years and there's not one Sunday I've left there empty hearted or empty minded. God has a way of doing that to you, speaking to your heart and affecting how you think and feel, its a job only He can do. And pastors are just one of the vessels He uses in that process.

My pastor is my friend, he is kind, honest and caring. He tells me like it is and doesn't sugar coat it like candy so it tastes good. He's genuine, and used in a mighty way, filled with the Holy Spirit, it shows in his actions and his words. You know he loves the Lord! And he cares about each one of us in his congregation. Pastor Denny Thank you so much, you are appreciated!

I don't know if you know the Lord or not, I hope that you do. I wouldn't want to be without Him. I'm not going to go into detail but I'm sure glad and grateful that I do because He is my everything. He loves me even when I'm not so lovable. That is a love that is priceless, a love that died on a cross so that I wouldn't have to, a love that bought me with His life . . .

Here are a few of entries in my journal and Bible from Pastor Denny's sermons on the Book of Ephesians, entries that have affected me deeply.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Hi Blogger Friends!
Yes it has been over three months since I've posted on my blog, many apologies for that. Sometimes life just happens and needs tending to. Unfortunately, I've let everything slide off the cliff. Since my husband retired I have been very occupied to say the least, and only now feel I have gained the time to pick up where I left off.

I have been gathering materials to journal my own retirement. No, I'm not completely retiring just from working for someone else. I will always be painting, Lord willing anyway. But I want to journal what I'm doing and possibly will be doing in the future to share it with my readers. Journaling is a way to keep your skills from getting rusty, not to mention keeping my brain from getting rusty also. A friend has encouraged me down this journaling path and so far it has been fun. Its been along time since I just had fun sketching on the road. I've also been working on some whimsical girls, these are also fun to draw and really cute.

My first journal entry was a sketch from my day out kayaking last week on a nearby lake. I have kayaked for years and thoroughly enjoy it, its relaxing, rejuvenating, and refreshing. It gives a peacefulness to my soul. My second entry was a trip to Wunder Bar, a new German coffee shop / eatery, with Two Fraus Bakery along side it in Harmony, PA. And boy their baked goods are out of this world fantastic! My favorites are their gingerbread cookies, orange cookies and molasses cookies, YUM! :) The third journal entry is in a smaller book and inspired by last Sunday's sermon.

Trip to Wunder Bar for breakfast
If you're interested in art journaling on a daily basis (you don't have to be an artist to do this) here are the items I have been working with that are easily accessible: a mechanical pencil, erasers, a Pentel Hybrid Technica pen 03 (sold at Michaels Arts & Crafts stores in the art department), Global Art Materials 5 1/2-inch by 8 1/4-inch Drawing Book (landscape) which can be purchased on Amazon at a reasonable price. I like these journals because you can use a light watercolor wash with them or lightly paint in them with watercolor. If you want to try your hand at watercolor painting I have listed some suggestions below. Prices vary but you can always use a 50% off coupon from Michaels to purchase a student quality set of watercolors. Windsor & Newton professional watercolors is what I use for my paintings, however you can get a nice student quality version of these in Winsor & Newton Cotman watercolors. Michael's has a compact set that has 14 different colors in the set and runs about $40. With a 50% off coupon it would be about $20 plus tax which is a reasonable price. You can also by a cheaper set of Artist Loft brand but the quality is not as nice.  I always recommend good quality watercolor paints to learn with, it makes a world of difference as does a good quality watercolor paper. My favorite is Fabriano Artistic Extra White cold press watercolor block. To start out I would recommend a 5" x 7" block. Its always better to use a good quality product when learning, your results turn out much better.

I will be posting again a day next week, until then enjoy your Saturday and the week to come!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

I'm pretty excited about a artisan and vendor show I will be participating in at Jennings Environmental Education Center, 2951 Prospect Rd. (Rte 528) Slippery Rock, PA on July 16th from 9 am to 5:30 pm. Celebrate the Bloom! is a free annual event celebrating the State's only Prairie (and the eastern most prairie in the US).   The festival includes nature explorations (i.e. bird, butterfly and wildflower walks), engaging demonstrations, local artisans and food, and musical guests. The event is produced in cooperation with 3MJC (the friends group and funding partner of Jennings), Slippery Rock in Bloom, and Slippery Rock University.

 I hope you will have an opportunity to enjoy the day at Jennings. There will be a variety of items for sale,
music, food and lots of natural walking trails for you to see the many wild flowers, beautiful birds and other wildlife.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Hello Blogger Friends,

Again I must apologize for not posting during the months of March and April. Things have been very hectic around home and I have been extremely busy with work, and preparing for my husband's retirement. I have gotten pretty far behind unfortunately and its hard catching up.

My hope is to finish the four paintings I started back in January now that things are slowing down. There is the grainery I mention in an earlier post, bluebirds, and a couple of other nature paintings. I'm excited for you to see the completed paintings soon.

Below is another Bible art journaling page I managed to squeeze in a couple of weeks ago for a class that I will be teaching coming up in May.

Well my friends I best get to work! Have a great week and enjoy the warm spring days!

Saturday, February 6, 2016

This week's Bible art journal is one of my favorite verses, Psalm 37:4
"Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart."
Well I do delight in the Lord and I know that whatever His desires are for me, those are the desires of my heart as well. For what He has to give is the ultimate, the very best. I want to be so close to Him that I can hear Him breathe!
There is nothing that compares with the perfect love Jesus, who laid His life down so that I could have eternal life.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

I want to share my latest Bible art journaling project with you. I was inspired by Priscilla Shirer's video series on "The Armor of God" we're doing in our ladies Thursday night Bible study. What a fantastic study. The group of girls at our table are wonderful and we get into some pretty good discussions how the study is relating to each of us.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Sweet Blogging Friends Happy New Year!

This year I've decided to try art journaling in my Bible. I have been following Rebekah Jones on Google through 2015 as she journaled through her Bible weekly. I loved it and thought what a wonderful way to spend time with God. So I undertook my first journal art today from the Scriptures I've read starting January 1, 2016. The devotion I'm reading from is "Jesus Calling" Enjoying Peace in His Presence by Sarah Young.
The devotions over the past three days have been about spending time with God in His Word, to have an open and renewed mind. So what better way to depict that is a child reading the Word, seeking God. As I move along week to week I will try to post my art journaling and share Scripture.