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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Merry Christmas!...

Sending Love & Best Wishes to all my Family, Friends & Faithful Followers
throughout this holiday season!
I am looking for to Christmas!  I am very blessed. 
I'm also looking forward to bringing in the New Year and saying good-bye to this one! 
 I feel like it's a new chapter!
Peace & Love

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Dance Like No One's Watching!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Sound the Alarm...

...  My family was spared from the flooding in South Carolina praise be to God!  My sister said that she went to the store to get all the fixin's for a pot of chili to hunker down with during the "deluge"; and the store was void of Kidney Beans! Everyone must have been making chili! Chili is one of my favorite comfort foods, and as I go through my handwritten cookbooks I find more recipes for chili than anything else.  I'm straining my brain to remember if I had a chili I didn't like...hum...nope!

Chili is a personal food don't you think?  Once Hubby & I went to a dinner party toting a pot of my chili, as did everyone else! A Chili Cook Off. We all ate a small bowl each others chili, a blind tasting, only the hostess knew who's was who's.  Our own being obvious to us, we still ate it like it was anonymous. We had planned to pick a winner, but no one could pick the best chili, I know I honestly couldn't. Each was a winner in it's own way!  It was so fun to see & taste how different each pot was and how personal it was.
 We have no rain (please pray) but now I have a hankerin' for chili.
All this hunkering & hankering Cowboy talk is making me want chili!...
5 Alarm Chili!
Yes those are tortilla chips! About an oz of chips. I have also used 2 corn tortillas. They add great flavor & also thicken up the chili.  I blended them with spices, (chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, 1 tbsp. ketchup & sugar) with large can of tomatoes. My favorite is whole tomatoes but I used a can of diced, so it made the chili thicker. I got lazy and didn't fire roast the peppers but it's so much better if you take the time to do that. The dark chilies are dried, which I soaked in 2 cups of hot water before adding those to the tomatoes in the blender as well.  I use the water from this soak in the chili. (brown liquid in measuring cup) Again I was lazy and just left the skins on to get every bit of pepper.  Normally I make with ground beef but I had this marbled piece of meat that I knew was going to be tasty and tender.  I always get my pot beyond hot before adding my room temperature meat. It should stick where it lands and I don't touch it until I can see that it's good & browned. This adds so much flavor. It's surprisingly not as hot as it would seem but I can eat fire so....
With chili I love warm tortillas or cornbread but for this one...
Pass the thick & chewy & crunchy San Francisco Sourdough Garlic Bread please!
Grab that spoon! Dare to Have A Bite ?

Monday, October 12, 2015

Sweet Things...

My 1st Painted Cake goes to my new Daughter-in-Law Chelsea Campbell!
Happy Birthday Chelsea!
(7-Up Confetti Cake with Lemon Butter Cream Frosting - it's a party on the inside! )
I had so much fun painting this cake that I can't wait to paint another one.  My son likes to bake and suggested we go into business!  Said he'll bake and I paint.   The idea of a CFL (Cottage Food Operations License) has been tossed around this house for the last 6 months or so.   I took a cake decorating class "many many Moons ago" as my Dad would say.  (That's really the only Indian thing he has ever said now that I think about it. hahaha Another story for another time.) Anyway!  I enjoy decorating them but not so much baking them, I'm more of a cook than a baker, so it could work.   Cakes are swirling around in my head.  Pumpkins with Pumpkin Spice, Roses with Red Velvet,  Carrots with Carrot Cake, Poinsettia & Holly, Sunflowers, Hydrangea, Trumpets, Shamrocks, Robots,.............Angels!   (Did she say robots?)

I painted this cake with regular food coloring. I know there are cake paints on the market that are very much like acrylic paint,  but have never looked at them but be assured I will be getting some soon! I started with new paint brushes, a flat brush & a liner brush.  Watering down the food color a little and painting from light to dark just like water colors, adding layers of color worked out best & was less stress, too much color and your design could be done for, or at least your fondant.  I used the flat brush like a calligraphy pen for the writing and then went over the top with the liner brush. If your brush gets too wet and a lot of color goes on it's easy to fix though, just dry your brush to use it to mop up the extra color like a little sponge.   I learned a lot from this little cake.  Green & red make brown & black depending on the intensity of either color. So one box of ordinary food color will make just about any color that you need.  If ever I make another lemon cake I will stipple the little lemons on the bottom to give them some texture.  I chickened out when it came to writing on the cake. I folded under the pressure...I only had 1 box of fondant....I didn't want to ruin it... so I made the banner.

Of course I have already started a little book of cake illustrations & ideas. I did each of these in a matter of minutes, but if time was taken to properly draw them out,  I think these could be cool & fun to paint. Paintings of Painted cakes......

Yes I will make a cake for you! 
Life is getting Sweeter...

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Doodle Doodle Doodle

I bought a couple of these for the gloveboxes because I can't seem to hang on to sunglasses.  I  have been drawing & painting & doodling, doodling, doodling.  I thought I'd share this quick, cute, crafty hat. Feel free to copy my design or make your own!

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Channeling an Old Chapter...

... I started painting these not so typical southwest paintings and haven't stopped... Living in Tucson as a young teenager still holds fond memories. The heat was well worth enduring because I still have a friend in my life from that chapter! See the hidden XOXOs in them hills?

Friday, July 24, 2015

It's Hot.... Arizona....
 4"x 6" acrylic on paper.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Destination Inspiration...

... Half Moon Bay...

We took a little birthday/de-stress 2 day trip to Half Moon Bay in April.  The stress didn't stop so I could use another little trip again!  This year it's been one traumatic horrible thing after another, but hopefully the tide is changing. I feel like it is; and I am beginning to paint again. I need to paint again. Painting is healing and I have missed it.  Well tucked away in "the vault"  was our trip and thoughts of this huge carnivorous plant place that we went to. It was so cool.  Our cameras died almost the minute we got in there so I don't have any pictures of the awesome displays. 

My Beach Angel. View from the top of the cliff...
I did it with my feet!
World's Rare Plants

Looking into the glass globes or potted plants it was like looking into another world. A Jurassic world or Underworld or Fairy world.  The owner was full of information about the plants as well. One carnivorous plant he showed me was 40 years old. He said if you have one you will never have any knats or a fly in your house. hahaha  Fasinating with a little creep factor.
The building was full of fairy & gnome gardens & really unusual things. A large selection of little ceramics to make your own tiny world too.
So begins my new series.... which I'm trying to name... Help is appreciated, just leave me a comment!
"Lovely to Eat You"...
"Full Moon in Half Moon Bay"...

I did 2 paintings on pieces of wood...but I think they are so whimsical, weird & wonderful, I am keeping those for myself & hanging them on my patio, but there will be more ...
Coming to a Ebay or Etsy Shop or Spoonflower shop soon!
So be on the lookout! You never will know where you might find a little inspiration!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

I Folded...

...and folded and folded. Who knew I could have one day made a living at folding paper like Sipho Mabona !??  When I moved to Japan I fell in love & couldn't have enough origami paper.  If my parents gave me money I would spend it on origami paper.  There was always a silver page or gold page, or both at the bottom of the stack and I always had a hard time folding those. I would save them for last because they were pretty. I would get so upset if I messed up on those pieces. haha Looking back it was sort of a comfort having that paper to play with being in such a new environment & culture. I love the Japanese people, Japanese art, food.  My mom jokes (but it's true)  that she was still finding paper of mine long after I moved out. (I won't say how long. haha)
A nice package of origami paper can still stop me in my tracks. 

After all these years I can still make these in my sleep! I also make one upside down with a little flare...
My son's wedding is July 3rd.  The rehearsal party is at my house. Maybe I should start now and cover the backyard in white cranes!  hum.... I think I'd need some volunteer paper folders my yard is pretty big!  Did you know according to Japanese legend that 1000 folded cranes makes a wish come true? Who's in? Who's folding with me?

Today I plan to work listing some new art & paint some more.
So folding my hands in prayer is the only folding I'm going to get done today!
Create a great day!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Happy St. Patrick's Day...

Feel free to use the above picture as you'd like.   Right click on the picture and save to your desktop.
My morning doodle. 
A doodle a day!

Have Fun! Be green!
Create a great day!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Pinned and Nailed...

... I will try to start posting more of the Pins I try.  I hate that I love Pinterest so much. haha  I don't dare get on there sometimes, time will vanish.  This jean skirt haunted me until I tried it.  (just like the hot glue gun molds on a previous post.) I've had some pin fails for sure and today I'm using the word "nailed" loosely.  The next one, however, is nailed for sure.  I have had a big bag of jeans/pants ready to donate but I was at the thrift with the kids a few weeks ago and these jeans were only $2.  I liked the flat pockets so I thought I would use them to practice on this skirt I had Pinned .  When you click on the picture for the Pin there are no instructions just a picture to go by.  The blog is Moda e Dicas de Costura, Fatima has lots of super cute refashion/upcycled clothes ideas, which I love.
But I'm all in. Chalk, Scissors, Machines at ready. Thinking how hard could it be?, usually with me end in a mess.  Surprisingly not that hard! It goes together pretty well.  I used white chalk to draw my lines on and I actually folded the pants in half & cut all layers at once. 
(Be careful if you have different pockets & pocket placement on the back)
Next time I will round out the point on the outside of the leg more. It's a little tricky navigating around that point & easing in  the ruffle.  I will do a little better sewing the back together with the weird inseam leftover too. That took a little time to figure that out. The picture above is before I completely serged it - the seams are nicely serged now.  On this one I didn't bother sewing a flat felled seam (jean seam) to attach the ruffles. I thought it might be too thick, but now I don't think so & I may try it.   The front is short, but wearable if you like short skirts. It's falls mid-thigh. Below it is modeled with a purple gypsy-ish slip skirt underneath. Some additional layers in the front would make it more modest.  I didn't take a picture of the back.  boo. The back is just as cute.  I just left all the edges serged but they could be hemmed. As it turns out,  I don't like the pockets that much but it was $2 of fun!  How cute this would be to do to little girls jeans.
After that skirt turning out better than expected,  I decided to use a pair out of the donate bag to make this one...
... but 2 of us couldn't figure it out! and it looks easier than the 1st one.  If you do, let me know! That pair of pants is still in pieces.  I want to try this one next. I may even wear this design...a little embroidery on the longer side...we'll see...
... that bag full of pants to donate may be skirts instead!
Create a great day!

Friday, March 13, 2015

Egg-cellent Idea...

... Why haven't I thought of this before?  We like egg salad on toast for breakfast sometimes.  I switch it up.  Plain, with pickles, with curry,  with turmeric, sometimes olives, horseradish, (gee I guess I have a large egg salad repertoire)... The other day I made some with green olives & fresh rosemary, mayo, salt & pepper.  Hubby wanted more but I only made a little. Boo. Next time I'll make more. The bread made it more delicious.  When I was just picking up a few things at the store,  passing by the bakery, I spy French bread straight out of the oven. Driven that direction by my nose probably. The bag was steaming,  I paused to look at that bag for a second. When I realize I am looking at a bag of bread, contemplating on whether to buy it or not, I snap out of it, hoping no one saw me because I'm sure I had a big thought bubble above my head.  So I pass it by. I looked around like I didn't care, then circled back around. I took it to the bakery lady and had her slice it for me.  Far to dangerous to bring home in a loaf & slice myself. *chunk butter guilt *repeat. :P nom nom nom  We normally don't eat white bread so it's a real treat. I'm not a candy, cake & cookie person, I'm a bread, pasta & chip person. Sugar is sugar. Anyway, I hate chunky egg salad so I usually meticulously chop the eggs one at a time into itty bitty pieces with a fork.  Out of the blue, like a blue light special, the bulb went off! Pastry Cutters! Pow! That worked so great & such a time saver I thought I would post it for you.
Such a long post for a simple tip, but if you like egg salad, you might appreciate this tip just in time for Easter!
Did I make the price of eggs go up? hahaha Since I have been eating sorta kinda vegetarian, we have been lots of eggs.  In the past year they have gradually become more & more expensive, almost doubling in price.  My hubby ordered a cobb salad the other day and there was no egg on it, he said he didn't complain & joked it was probably too expensive.  I say sort of vegetarian, because I love McD's Jalapeno Burger - what a surprise right? (pepperfool)  I normally would not pick McD's as my go to place for a great burger and I don't even like cheeseburgers! I never order a cheeseburger coz the cheese is all slimy & makes the meat taste slimy & taste less meaty to me, but I like the Jalapeno Burger. It's all about the peppers. I do get one now & then or have a little tuna, or chicken, but not very much.  If you love a cheeseburger I hope I didn't just ruin it for ya. hahaha 
Speaking of veggies.... I have been drowning my sorrows a little with paint.  Hours go whizzing by. My #4 Mom I call her was just hospitalized. Please pray for Mom Freda and her family. She was diagnosed with Sundowners syndrome and her husband has Alzheimer's. It a difficult time her children & family.  I also could use a little extra money with so many things coming up and things breaking.  Don't you find that sometimes happens all at once? I am putting most of my small pieces on Ebay.  Click HERE to see what's there.  My sister,  SandyPetals, who I love so much, has been encouraging me to zendoodle like she does, I've dabbled, but when I make a mistake or a line I don't's over, but she says there are no mistakes, just do it, she said paint some eggplants!  So I did, then radish, then peppers, then cherries, and green beans....
These turned out to be "happy little paintings" as someone once said.  haha The doodle paintings surprise me when they are finished.  I love eggplants - but that's another post!  I've done 2 eggplant paintings, 2 radishes, cherries...  I started these & can't quit.   I want to paint some for my kitchen or at least make prints for my kitchen.  I'm fond of the radishes. I love to eat radishes now but I didn't use to. I salt them and let them sit for 1/2 hour or so.   Hey they are also good on egg salad!
Create a great day!

Monday, March 9, 2015

P.H.D. completed? ....

...Project Half Done that is.  I love zipper bags. My zipper bags have zipper bags. I use them for everything.  I have my make-up in 3 or 4 zipper bags, (yes organized, eyes, lips, etc ...) however,  most of that I don't use everyday but I pull out my make-up bags & they sometimes end up on my counter  for a day even though it takes 2 seconds to put them back in the cabinet.  I don't like that.  If you are a Follower of my blog you might already know about my "Hidey Holes", they are places I put things in so things are out of sight, just one tiny example is a antique large green bell pepper cookie jar filled with vitamins, aspirin, cough syrup, etc... in my kitchen, that jar would be classified as a "Hidey Hole", a medicinal hidey hole. hahaha   Basically they save me, I can have lots of crap but not look like it. haha   True story. When I was a kid my Mom had us shove clutter from the coffee table under a couch cushion when company came calling. hahaha  In her defense, she was married to Dad who doesn't like his clutter touched & had 4 kids, personally I thought it was brilliant at the time.
3 years ago (I know, craft hoarder) I saw this ugly worn jewelry box at the thrift store for $5. (The picture doesn't do it's homeliness justice, I thought $5 was a lot for it.) I also thought it might be perfect to put my everyday make-up/facial things in and a few pieces of costume jewelry or what nots - basically a new Hidey Hole for my dressing area.  
When I got it home & started painting. First primed it with white.
I drew out flowers, and painted it black.I didn't like the flowers.  
So I changed the flowers to Hydrangeas, which I love.
Then I decided I didn't want that for make-up. I like my zipper bags, they take up less space and swore off leaving them on the counter.  So I just put it in it's own hidey hole and left it. Well I pulled it back out a few weeks ago and decided I finish it and if I didn't want it I would just re-donate  it or give it away. But as I was finishing it I thought I would use it to house lots of sewing notions that I grab often, bobbins, rippers, stuff that .  
I liked it black and may turn it back to black...  
...but for now I am leaving the pop of red color on it.

I still have to varnish it or wax day...
I hope this inspires you to make something new again!