Saturday, April 30, 2011


The day is almost over and so is the A-Z Challenge.  This month went by so quickly.
For this, the very last and one of my most loved letters, I am going to share a few of my favorite Z's.

Zeppo, the odd man whose lack of oddness is what makes him not fit in to this bunch.  He was less kooky and a bit more suave.

Zeppelin, led or otherwise.  

Zelda, especially the Ocarina of Time.  Great memories of my kids playing this game, they absolutely loved it.  Nostalgia!  Love the music from it too.

Zooey, not only do I enjoy seeing her in movies, but I also love her voice.

Zumba, a super fun way to get your abs and tush in shape.  The only catch, you actually have to do it for it to work.

And last, but definitely not least, my daughter Zara.
Looking forward to seeing her and spending time with her, it's been too long.

Happy Z day and the end of this alphabetical challenge.

Oh, pilot of the storm who leaves no trace, like thoughts inside a dream 
Heed the path that led me to that place, yellow desert stream 
My Shangri-La beneath the summer moon, I will return again 
Sure as the dust that floats high in June, when movin' through Kashmir. 
~Led Zeppelin

Friday, April 29, 2011

Yesterday....Nerd Alert

Yesterday was the first day of this Spring where the weather was perfectly gorgeous.  The sky was a Hayao Miyazaki kind of sky, rich blue with big white puffy clouds lazily floating by.
From the movie My Neighbor Totoro
The temperature was absolutely perfect, cool but not cold with a lovely breeze.  The trees and grass were exceptionally green.

The perfect day for the guys and I to take a journey through the woods.  Little did I know that I would be in the middle of an adventure.

It quickly became D&D meets, Ogre Battle with a little bit of Call Of Duty thrown in.  It was truly the most entertaining hike I've ever been on.  We were interrupted a few times by Ogres, which my sons had to battle for the right to pass. If we got caught in a sand pit, we'd roll the imaginary dice to see if we could continue on or become lunch for some vicious, wandering beast. We did have a couple of normal moments, skipping rocks down the river. 

My son found the perfect staff, so he became Gandolf and because of my height or should I say lack of, I was Frodo.

 Towards the end of the hike, they decided to break out in song, changing all the lyrics to that horrible Friday song, it is now all about D&D and being a nerd.  Needless to say, it was the nerdiest hike I've ever been on, but I loved every minute of it and I got a few decent pictures along the way.
Have a splendid day!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Letter X

The letter X in all it's various forms through history.  I put every X word in the dictionary behind the letters and used the color yellow, because the word xanth means yellow.

"A shrewish, tart-tongued woman is often called a Xanthippe, after the wife of Socrates, who filed this bill of particulars in a spectacularly venomous fashion."
~Morris Dictionary of Word and Phrase Origins

I couldn't help myself!  
I will leave you with this poem.

Kubla Khan

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree :
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea

So twice five miles of fertile ground
With walls and towers were girdled round:
And here were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
And here were forests ancient as the hills,
Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.

But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slanted
Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover!
A savage place! as holy and enchanted
As e'er beneath a waning moon was haunted
By woman wailing for her demon-lover!

And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething,
As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing,
A mighty fountain momently was forced:
Amid whose swift half-intermitted burst
Huge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail,
Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher's flail:
And 'mid these dancing rocks at once and ever
It flung up momently the sacred river.
Five miles meandering with a mazy motion
Through wood and dale the sacred river ran,
Then reached the caverns measureless to man,
And sank in tumult to a lifeless ocean:

And 'mid this tumult Kubla heard from far
Ancestral voices prophesying war!

The shadow of the dome of pleasure
Floated midway on the waves;
Where was heard the mingled measure
From the fountain and the caves.
It was a miracle of rare device,
A sunny pleasure-dome with caves of ice!

A damsel with a dulcimer
In a vision once I saw:
It was an Abyssinian maid,
And on her dulcimer she played,
Singing of Mount Abora.
Could I revive within me
Her symphony and song,
To such a deep delight 'twould win me,
That with music loud and long,
I would build that dome in air,
That sunny dome! those caves of ice!

And all who heard should see them there,
And all should cry, Beware! Beware!
His flashing eyes, his floating hair!
Weave a circle round him thrice,
And close your eyes with holy dread,
For he on honey-dew hath fed,
And drunk the milk of Paradise.

~Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Have an eXciting day!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Woman of the Wood

I'm keeping this post simple.  
This was a trial and error project.  Illustrator inks on wood, sharpie marker for the black lines and varnish to make it smooth and shiny.  When I finished inking and marking it, I went to put the varnish on and it smeared my inks, I had to do some fixing here and there, but I think it turned out okay. I will go about it a bit differently next time.

Have a Wonderful Wednesday!!

V is for Vincent

Van Gogh has always been one of my favorite artists.  I love that he created his own style and didn't conform to what everyone else was doing.  Notice the stars in these few pictures, so beautiful and amazing!  He placed complementary colors next to each other to make them really stand out.

The Cafe Terrace At NIght

The Starry Night

He used very thick layers of paint and vigorous brushstrokes to form intense patterns and shadows.

Crows Over A Wheat field

Road with the Cypresses


Van Gogh loved how nature combined the blue of the sky with the yellow of the  fields.  He described it as "a symphony in blue and yellow."

The Potato Eaters

He never spent so many days on a picture as he did on this one.   After painting this piece, he wrote, "I like so much better to paint the eyes of people than to paint cathedrals."  To Van Gogh, the painting of a face was as spiritual as a painting of a church.
Vincent Willem van Gogh
Vincent's father and grandfather were both ministers and he too became a minister. He worked in a very poor mining district, where he too, was very poor.  He drew pictures of the miners and found solace in that.  After two years, he felt he was meant to serve humanity through art.  From then on, he never stopped drawing and painting.

Hope your day is visually stimulating!

Monday, April 25, 2011

U is for Umbrella

Umbrellas, we seem to have a fascination for them.  The word comes from the Latin word Umbra, meaning shade or shadow.  They are also called brolly, gamp, sunshade, rainshade or bumbershoot.  No matter what you call them, they seem to have a magical quality to them. 

I took my love for trees and umbrella's and combined them.
Under the Umbrella Tree
When I was young, we had a clear, very long umbrella that I could sit under, I felt like I was inside a bubble, watching the rain all around me.   I have drawn or painted quite a few pictures with umbrellas, hoping to capture that feeling of whimsy, protection, or magic.  I have found several pictures created by other artists too, who see the beauty of an umbrella.  Today is rather rainy, a perfect day for an umbrella.  Enjoy the pictures!

Have an Uber magical day!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Trees and Thank You's!

Cherry Blossom, acrylic
I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree
A tree whose hungry mouth is pressed
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day
And lifts her leafy arms to pray,
A tree that may in summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair
Upon whose blossom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems were made by fools like me
But only God can make a tree.
Joyce Kilmer

Inspired by Klimt's Tree of Life.
I didn't get a chance to finish before posting.

Thank You's!!

I have been given a few awards recently and decided I would post them all today, with a Thank You!!

Thank you to Jingle, who has very lovely poetry on her blog, for the two awards.  So very sweet, I really appreciate it and I feel uber special.
Blogger Buddy Award

This is the Blogger Buddy Award.  She asked that I pass these on to 1 to 5 people. I know just who I would like to pass them to.  
To ~Rasz~  who was one of the first people I met in Blogger World and I keep in touch with daily and enjoy her beautiful spirit, which you will see on her blog.
To  Noemi who I also visit daily, she is a sweetie.  She creates beautiful jewelry and has recently opened an Etsy shop. 
To Tara Tyler  who is extremely cheerful and enthusiastic, not only in her fun posts, but in her comments.

The Talented Writer Award

Thank you Jingle also for this great award.  I'm not much of writer, I am better with pictures, but hopefully I can get what I am thinking/feeling across in what I do say or draw.

I'd like to pass this along to a few friends who I think are very talented writers and I enjoy reading their blogs everyday.

lkramer14, who makes me stop and think and wonder.
Mojo, who bends and stretches my mind like a personal trainer.
li she writes Flash Fiction and is very talented and clever, always leaves you with a twist.
Talli Roland, she is so spunky and fun and makes me smile.
The Stylish Blogger Award

Thank you so much to  Nicole at 
The Madlab Post, if you love movies like I do, then you'll really love visiting her blog.
I also received the Stylish Blogger award from li,  I think we must have been having the same thought process at the same time.  Thank you Li, very much! 
To accept the award, you have to do the following:
1. Thank and link back to the person who gave you the award.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Award 10-15 blogs who you think deserve this award.
4. Contact these bloggers and let them know about the award.

I will have to come up with 7 things later or maybe earlier.  It's almost 2 am, and creative is not what I'm feeling at the moment. 
Also, I do have many blogs in mind for this one, but I will hopefully get that list posted later today, after I've slept a bit first.  
Anyway, Thank you so much Nicole and Li!  You're the bomb diggity!  :)

And last but not least, this one is from Antimony, whose blog is truly creative and wonderful.  I love her poetic and lyrical style.  She is a super groovy chick!  
Thank you!!  

Good golly, that was a long post, but worthwhile!  
Have a Truly Happy Easter!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

S is for Sorry, Stressed, Self Portrait, and Schiff Ahoi

To begin with, I want to say sorry to everyone.  I have not visited nearly as many blogs as I would have liked to during this challenge.  We have slow internet where we live and loading blogs can sometimes take 10 - 20 minutes.  I truly desire to visit everyone and respond, reply and make new friends.  So, if I've not yet visited you, please don't think I'm a Snob, I promise I will make my way around to you as soon as possible.

Stressed, yes indeed!  I have suddenly realized what my weekend looks like.  Yikes!!
l have 3 dozen eggs to hard boil and dye (hoping for some boy help with that), a book to finish, our book club mtg is tonight.  The theme, Irish night, although it has nothing to do with the book we are reading, we just love all things Irish and right now Bailey's is sounding pretty good.  An art show to attend, the one we prepared for last week, matting and getting hangers put on over a hundred pieces.  My father is coming to stay today and my house is looking like a bomb hit it.  RPGing at my house, all day Saturday and get ready for Easter dinner, which thankfully is not at my house Sunday.  Not to mention the art project that is looming over me.  My dining room table has become my easel for 3 weeks now and I'm still not finished.  All that and a bit of life thrown in.  Normally I'm a fairly calm person, but right now I need a  bit of magic.  Cleaning fairies and father time would be nice!

Self Portrait:  I saw this concept on another blog not long ago and wanted to give it a whirl.  I used white crayon to draw myself on white paper, not easy because I couldn't really see what I was drawing.  Then I went over it with colored inks, using a paint brush and a bit of water.  I like the way it turned out!

I'm sure I could come up with many more S words, but I will end this post with this picture I recently did.  I was inspired by a song called, Schiff Ahoi.  It is an instrumental song, lasting less than a minute, by a German, somewhat screamo band called, We Butter Our Bread With Butter.  I live in a house of teenage boys and so my musical influences have a very wide range.  
I don't have a picture of it finished so this is a work in progress picture. 
I did this one entirely with Illustrator inks and a quill pen.  Except for the colored parts, which I used a paint brush for a smoother look.

Have a super and hopefully unstressful day, filled with some yummy desserts!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Red, White and Grey: Reposting and Robert Frost

I started this blog in February, I don't have much experience in the blog world, but I thought with this A-Z challenge, I would do a repost.  These are a couple of pictures I drew in February, while the trees were still bare and winter was in the midst of being somewhat colorless.

The Colorless Woods: I am passionate about drawing trees, as well as being in the midst of them. I tend to draw them a lot. Probably because that's where I would usually like to be. In the woods.
With winter all around us, cardinals are a stark contrast to the naked trees and colorless world. Although, the birds in this picture aren't cardinals, I was inspired by the many that come to visit our house.

As much as I love color, there are times when just a hint of color does wonders.

The Bridge: This is a real bridge that my husband and I explored recently, on a beautiful, misty and magical day. With the fog and mist, the colors seemed to wash away. My favorite part though, was being with my husband, exploring new places.

And because this is the letter R, I'm going to add just a bit of Robert Frost.  This is one of my all time favorite poems.

The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

The Long Walk Home

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Minding my P's and Q's

P is for People:  (Very Lovely People)
So far, this A-Z Challenge has been pretty amazing.  Mostly because it has given me the opportunity to meet so many awesome people and visit some really fantastic blogs.  I thought I'd mention a few whom I have become more familiar with. I look forward to meeting more new people and keeping up with the many lovely people I've met so far.  If you get a moment, please stop by and say hi to these wonderful people!

Lisa at
Lisa  at
Mojo at
Noemi at
There are so many, many more!  I am loving getting to know you all!  Thanks so much for visiting me too!  :)

An artist whose name is Potter!  (another very lovely person)
I adore Beatrix Potter and her very cheery artwork.  I love the way she painted animals and gave them human characteristics.  The stories are sweet and splendid.  They always give me a feeling of nostalgia and comfort.   Enjoy!

Beatrix with her pet bunny! 

Q is for Quiet:
These days my house is more quiet then it once used to be.  My kids are older and have many other things to occupy their time.  I spend a lot of my time working on projects, I usually try to listen to music while I do, but sometimes I just enjoy the quiet.  The sound of the birds coming in through the windows.  The chimes that gently blow in the breeze.  A walk down a quiet road or through the park.
What is your definition of quiet?

The place I like to walk at the park.

The ferry ride, I love standing outside, watching the water.

My favorite swing.  I like to swing at night and look through the trees to the moonlit sky.
Have a Peaceful and Quiet day!!