Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Hearts for Today

A flower petal from the geraniums above fell on top of this little rabbit. Cara Vejsicky found this one for me.

KFC popcorn chicken. Kids found this one.

On the school playhground, Paige found this heart...gum or tar? Don't know.

And finally, Maggie graciously left this one for us. Of course the kids discovered this one! It's wonderful that everyone know I like to photograph hearts. Not many escape notice around here!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

My Favorite Number

Am I the only person who doesn't have a favorite number? Why don't I? Have I thought it wasn't important enough? Has a certain number never presented itself to me to be considered worthy? Or have I just not been paying attention? When someone asks me what my favorite number is, I want to have an answer!

So I gave it some thought and couldn't figure out how to decide. No number stands out for me...or carries special meaning. I thought about choosing based on their shape and visual appeal. With that in mind, number 5 appeals to me in a stylish way and 2 is beautiful and fun to write. My left brain thought I should research the meaning of numbers, called numerology, to see which number suits my personality best.

I narrowed my choices down to the numbers 3 and 4. 3 = creativity + expressing myself + new adventure and 4 = stability + home + back to my roots. Both of these numbers describe me well, but I must pick ONE. I went to another website and entered my name and birthday and received this:

Your Life Path Number is 3
Your Life Path Number represents the path you should take through life and the talents and skills you have to make your journey a rewarding one. Your Life Path will allow you to be creative and comfortable with yourself. You will approach life with a bottomless well of optimism. Your imagination will inspire you to create, and in time you will come to inspire others.

Your Life Destiny Number is 3
Your Destiny Number sheds light on those things you must accomplish in your life to be fulfilled. Your destiny is to create, and inspire others to create. You were meant to express yourself, to share the joys of creation with others, imbibe those fortunate enough to know you with the powers of creation and the joys of unbridled enthusiasm.

It was easy to make my decision after reading this. So 3 (three) it is!! I have been blessed with three wonderful children and know that if I pay attention I will discover many more three's in my life with special meaning. Now I'm off to discover my favorite color...why don't I have one of those either (does black count?)

Thursday, April 21, 2011

A Little Maggie TLC

Yesterday the kids and I spent a fun day, all 13 hours of it, at Disneyland. So needless to say, I felt sorry for Maggie being home for such a long time all by herself. Today I wanted to make-up for my absence by giving her some TLC. She got to play in the hose which is one of her favorite things. Little did she know she was also going to get soaped up afterwards with special shampoo to help her allergies and soak in the backyard for 30 minutes (she wasn't too crazy about staying outside by herself for a while). Rinsing was playtime once again. Later it was off to the park to play ball...cuz it's all about The Ball!!!!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Sping Break Fun

Had a fun day at California Adventure and Disneyland with the kids to celebrate Spring Break. Despite the long lines, we successfully got on most of the major rides and enjoyed the World of Color show...a spectacular finale to great day. With only a handful of whines, minimal complaints and virtually no sibling fights, we had a fantastic day. When your seventeen year old tell you he had a great day, then you know all is well!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

My Adventure Race Adventure

This last weekend Traci, Gigi and I completed the Renegade Dirty Adventure Race (a triathlon of sorts). What sounded like a fun idea six months ago, turned into a black cloud hanging over my head weeks before the race. Nervous about not knowing what to expect and knowing I'd have to push myself harder than I like to be pushed, I just wanted to back-out completely. But being the dependable person that I am, I couldn't let my friends down. So we arrived at Bonelli Park at 6:45 am in the not-so-comfortable temperature of 39 degrees and got ready to start. Our first leg of the race was the 3-mile trail run. Using our map, we had to find a handful of checkpoints, punch our passport and set off for the next leg of the race. I felt like I was on The Amazing Race TV Show.

This is one of the optional checkpoints we located off the main trail.
We completed the first leg in 1 hour 15 minutes sharing last place with another team who were also there just to have fun. Our next challenge was the 1/2-mile boat paddle pulling one member in an inner tube. After what seemed like forever, we carried our flotation devices through the beach obstacle course and finished at the rock climbing wall. Legs tired from running on hills, arms tired from paddling, now we get to use what little energy we have left to scale the wall. With that said and done it's off on the 8-mile all uphill, mountain bike ride from hell!

The beach obstacle course was one of the fun challenges along the course...teamwork was key. 

In the transition area getting ready for our ride, an event worker felt the need to remind us that we were entered in a race...we laughed and told him were not IN IT TO WIN IT, JUST HAVE FUN!
The riding leg of the race had some mental challenges mixed in with the uphill torture...a nice diversion from our pain. Rolling dice, putting together a puzzle blindfolded, and filling a holey tube with water to retrieve the ball put our mind to use instead of our muscles. We only stopped once to contemplate our sanity wondering what we had gotten ourselves into. Then, with God's grace and no catastrophes...we made it to the finish line as they were starting to clean up the event. We only got 5 points deducted for finishing an hour after the recommended finish time and best of all...we were not LAST...we came in second to last. But the most hilarious thing of all??? Take a look at the photo below.

Here we are holding our First Place Plaque. That's right...we placed first in 3 Member Woman's Teams. I probably don't have to tell you that we were the ONLY 3 Woman Team!  We'll laugh about this for a long time

Friday, April 8, 2011

Encouraging Words Inspire

The power of an encouraging word and heartfelt support is simply amazing. Yesterday I emerged from my cocoon  that I call home and touched based with a few souls I've been meaning to contact. When they brought up my art and fed me a kind word or two it made my heart sing. Those simple words made me eager to get back in the studio, to keep pushing forward even when I feel like giving up. Thank You!

With life stretching me in many directions, it's been challenging to accomplish much on my art journey lately. The mixed media piece above "Hellebores in the Field"  24 x 30 inches is one I recently finished. For my first attempt at a collage background and oil paint flowers, it's not too bad. It does, however, remind me of what I call Price Club Art which are the large oil reproduction painting you could once buy at Price Club. Oh well, it looks good in my bathroom.

The two pieces below are from Tim Gagnon's video course on Misty Trees. In one of my recent posts I mentioned taking this course to learn his mist painting technique so I could finish a painting I had started. The first Misty Trees painting I started on acrylic paper and found it was hard to blend the paint. So then I started the 12 x 12 inch canvas below. It was easier to work on the canvas, but I continued to work on both pieces for practice. When I look at them now I can't really see a difference. The misty trees in the background were a bit challenging and Tim made it look so stinkin' easy. Ignore my floating tree in the bottom photo. This was just the first weeks lesson...I think I have 3 or 4 more to go. Check back