Friday, May 26, 2017

Collage not Drawing

Hello from the still raining New Hampshire. Its such a grey and cold morning that it doesn't feel like May at all. They say this has been one of the rainiest Mays on the record. 
The long Memorial Day holiday weekend looks like we might get a little sun, but not a lot of heat. Last year I went for my first swim over this holiday weekend, and this year I don't think I don't think swimming would be on my mind just because its not going to be that warm. But since I can't swim yet from my surgery, I guess the cooler weather is OK on that part.
So today I have a page from drawing journal, which you can see isn't always about drawing.
I used some bits from an envelope as my starting point, along with some stamped, colored and fussy cut pansies. And I love these TH pre-cut people. 
And since this page is a little grungy, I am going to link up again to Gill Elegance and Grunge challenge at Art Journal Journey
And I had a nice visit with my students yesterday. And there was no embarrassing  stories from my husband. :) My husband even said what great kids they were. (Which I said of course they are...ha-ha!)  The kids even brought me a yummy dinner, which I will show you on Tuesday for T. :)
That's all that's going on here in my world.
Enjoy your weekend everyone. 

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Creepy Crawly

Hi from dreary New Hampshire everyone. We have some rain moving in today. It might even be around long enough to wash out some of the long Memorial Day holiday weekend ahead. But we shall see.
So today I have another page from my drawing journal. There are all kind of calendar pages in the front I won't be using so I decided to make some journal pages out of them. My first one is kind of grungy, so it works for Gill's challenge at Art Journal Journey.
I thought the big bug stamped image was so appropriate for all the bugs out at my house right now. We are in black fly and mosquito season. The black flies will be gone in another week, and the mosquitoes will drop off so we only get them at night, but seems like as soon as we get into May we get hordes of them all day also. Between hearing their high pitch call and being attacked by hundreds of little black flies, you can barely go outside. UGH!!!! Its one of the reasons I have a screen porch.
So many of you have been asking for an update on my husband and not just me. Sorry about that. I always think of this blog as kind of my space but of course I should mention him. :)  
He is actually doing quite well. He came home from the hospital 20 pounds heavier than when he went in because they pump him full of fluid to keep the kidney working. He's lost about half of that and the kidney is working great. I think he is more energetic than me, mainly because he didn't lose an organ and is now got a working one. :) He definitely is having a hard time sitting still.
Not much else new here. A few of my students are coming to visit me later today which I am excited about. They are my seniors plus one of my former students who just finished her freshman year in college and who I have kept in touch with. I've never had students visit me at home before. Hopefully my husband won't embarrass me and tell them some silly story. :) LOL.
That's all for me. Thanks for visiting. 

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Where is the Sun?

Hi everyone. This week has flown by and it is Wednesday.
With the surgery 2 weeks ago I am really starting to feel a lot better. Still, I can't say I am back to my old pace yet, but that will come I am sure. I am now able to drive though, at least short trips, and I am getting up and down without the difficulties I had at first.
And now that I can sit longer than 30 minutes at my art table, I am a happy girl.
Its all good.
So today I have another grunge page for Gill's fun challenge at Art Journal Journey.
The challenge is Elegance and Grunge.
I started this page quite awhile back, but never finished it off, so I did that yesterday and am quite happy with the results.
And we have really gotten green around here. I have an azalea in my garden that is blooming beautifully.

You can see at the top there are still a lot of blooms to come.
This plant has sentimentality to me because it came from my Dad. He loved his shrubbery, and when his azalea started this little tiny offshoot, he dug it up and gave it to me.  Of course then it was only about 6 inches tall. I put it in the corner of my garden and it has flourished there. My Dad passed away in 2004 and he was sick for a few years before that, so I love having this connection to him.
The rest of my garden is pretty weedy right now, and if the bugs weren't so bad I would go out and sit and pull a few, even if it took me days to do the whole garden, but between surgery recouping and those bugs, its not happening.
I will have my work cut out for me in a week or two when I can finally get out.
Look at this adorable succulent garden-complete with a fairy house- the woman who runs the doggie day care made. She has clever ideas. I like how she made it in a wheel barrow. Nice and portable.
And I have been reading I finished books 1 and 2 of Elena Ferrante's Neapolitan series.

Ferrante is an Italian author, and this is a 4 book series about a friendship between 2 women. My only complained is that each book ends with a cliff hanger. I was hoping to take a little break between them, but then book 2 ended with another palpable  moment, so I ordered book 3 off of Amazon and will start it once it arrives. Meanwhile I am filling my time with a very different read.
I loved  Jurrassic Park so when a long lost new Michael Crichton book about dinosaur bones came out, I wanted to read it. So far its good. I like how its set in the late 1800's and how he takes 2 real historical figures and wounds them into a story.  Luckily its not a big book so I can read it before the other Ferrante book arrives. :)
Maybe I should order the final book in the Ferrante series before I get to the end of book 3 because I am sure that will end in a cliffhanger too.
Enough babbling on for me today. Hope everyone has or is having a good day.

Monday, May 22, 2017

A New Mug

Hey T Gang ladies- another Tuesday has arrived.
I have a new mug which I like a lot and wanted to share with you today.
I love the dog paw and the human foot. Seeing I have 2 dogs that I would take every where with me, if I could. :) The mug comes from a blog/Facebook page called Loki the Wolf-Dog. 
And I have new favorite tea.
It is great for spring and early summer with a fantastic strawberry smell and taste. I like to try out new teas on occasion to shake up the typical cup I drink.
And I also have a new page to add to this month's challenge at Art Journal Journey. Gill is the hostess this month and she picked Elegance and Grunge as her theme.
I call him Mr. Inspector. And he works perfect today because this Inspector never goes anywhere without his trusty canine. Maybe he needs one of my Don't Go It Alone mugs.
It been pretty quiet around my world the last couple of days. Works for me.
Happy T day everyone. Hope yours is a good one.

Saturday, May 20, 2017


Hi everyone. Happy Saturday evening or Sunday or whatever day it is when you read this.
Today was a beautiful day, and my daughter, my husband and myself went out for a little drive and took our daily walk someplace scenic. Its easier to go walk our daily 3500 (or so) steps someplace that is paved and smooth rather than our gravel driveway and road. Today the daughter took us up to Wolfeboro, New Hampshire and we walked around town for a little bit.
 My husband loved seeing how many boats were in on the town docks. Of course he wished he was in his boat and we were out on the lake taking a cruise.
 We went up later in the day (early evening) when the traffic and crowds were less. I love the effect of the sunlight on this store door.
The closed sign is kind of cute too.
 I saw lots of pansies in store window boxes.
 And look at the cool shadow this railing made on the sidewalk.
 I love this reflection too. I think the pansies frame the bottom  perfectly.
 And the hubby took a little rest on this bench. It had quite the fancy back. The wood chopper and the bear.
 More pansies plus this happy cup.
Plus my daughter and I bought these almost identical sandals. We found them on sale and I decided I deserved a little treat.
She did too.
I need to paint my toenails so they look almost as good as hers.
And here's a couple more doodle pages from my drawing journal. I've been doing more of this than other art as everything I need is right on my work table.

 And finally, one of my classes sent me this homemade card.  I thought the front was pretty funny.
I can imagine them discussing what to put on the front. I wonder who came up with this?
But I like it and really cherish the fact they took the time to make it for me.
That's all here. Hope everyone is having a great (or had) a great weekend so far.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Take a Breath and Go to Bed at 4:30

Happy weekend everyone.
The last 24 hours have been a bit crazy here. Today I needed to be back for my post-surgery check up at 9 AM, in Boston, which is 2 hours away.  But I will admit it felt good to get up and get moving, especially since my daughter did all the driving. :)  (Plus all looks good and I don't need to go back for 6 months!) Then her shopping habit took me to a few stores, which wore me out. When I got home I put on my pajamas and went to bed for a long nap.
But I was excited last evening (Thursday) that my friend who helps me run the National Honor Society club at school had the kids make me their service project. They collected over $100 among themselves and then my friend went shopping and brought me 3 big bags of easy to make food. But even better was she first made us dinner last night. Having a good meal and a little fun social time right in my own house was really a good mental boost.
I've done a lot of doodling in my drawing journal this past week. Here's a page. Not the most exciting of art and not all that great since my drawings are more like cartoons.
However, they may not be fantastic but they do help me build confidence in what I can draw.
Enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Holy Cow Its Hot

Wow. Yesterday I was saying how nice the weather was and then it just turned plain hot and summer like. Today we are suppose to have record highs. I'm not against the heat, but this might be a little too hot for me. They are saying we should be about 93 degrees (about 34 Celsius). If I wasn't still healing and not allowed to go for a swim I just might have to today. :)
But it is making the leaves pop out.
The oaks all around my house are always the last to get leaves. 
Its a good thing I like violets too. I usually pull them out because they just take over the garden, but no weeding for me right now. They are really pretty little flowers though.
So yesterday I managed to spend just a little more studio time. And I finished up a piece that is good for both Try It On Tuesdays  with a theme of Little Things Mean A Lot and also for Moo Mania with a theme of Dancer.
Not sure what that spot is on the right- I just noticed it. I'm very good at getting bits of this and that plopped all over my pieces. :)
Phew! And I just squeezed it in under 4 inches. :)
Another quiet day on my docket. I'm hoping to read more of book 2 in Elena Ferrante's Neapolitan series and maybe a little more art time too.  The hubby has an afternoon doctor's appointment so I'll even get a little me time too. :)
Probably I will just try to stay cool. And be thankful this heatwave isn't going to last more than a day.
Happy Thursday everyone. Hope you are having/ or had a beautiful May day.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Summer Arrives

Happy Wednesday everyone. We've finally started getting more summer like weather here in New Hampshire after a few weeks of cool and cloudy days. I'm ready, maybe not for summer heat but definitely for some more of this nice weather. :)
Here's a page I made back before surgery to celebrate this return to sunshine and warmth.

I am going to link up to Gill's fabulous challenge at Art Journal Journey, Elegance and Grunge. I think my tropical page is a bit more grunge than elegance. 
I was excited to get into my happy place yesterday for a couple of short play sessions.  I'm excited to have a little more arty time today too. The hubby and I are home all day with no appointments or places  we need to be so I am looking forward to a nice quiet day. We can't go anyplace because neither of us can drive yet. The hubby needs some rest. He's recovering well but he's got the all the immuno-suppression drugs to deal with too. Its a whole second level on top of just surgery healing.
Not much else exciting in my world. Reading, trying to do a few small things to feel normal, and taking lots of naps. I rather like the nap part. :)
Have a great day! 

Monday, May 15, 2017

Pre-Surgery Celebration

I missed last Tuesday's T Day fun as (many of you already know) I was tied up with surgery. My husband had needed a kidney for the last 27 months since he came down with a rare autoimmune disorder that wiped out both of his.
It had been a long road. Many of you know what I mean because of other frustrating and sad health issues. Somehow when I went forward to be checked as a kidney donor I didn't expect to pass all the tests. Nor did I expect to be match. (I'm not sure how much we match-but I am still curious.) Yet I was, and last Tuesday was the day we were to move forward.
Last Monday afternoon was a time to celebrate the up-coming second chance we had.
Here's our little crowd. I am missing as I took the photo. My husband and one of his sisters on the right, and my daughter and her cousin on the left. They wanted to come down and stay with my daughter during the stressful day when both of her parents were undergoing surgery.
(My daughter is an only child.)
We had a toast to easy recoveries and moving forward.
And we had a good laugh about our waiter being around  6 feet 7 (201 centimeters) compared to me only being 5 feet (152 centimeters).
Not a very flattering photo of me.
 Here's a better photo of me earlier in the day when we were waiting to meet my surgeon. The photos on the walls behind us are all the old transplant surgery teams at the hospital.
And let me show you a couple more photos of Boston.
Like this new sign at Government Center.
And an old marketplace which was redone 40 years ago called Fanneuil Hall.  Now its a modern marketplace.

It was a good day last week but I am really glad to be over that hump. Recovery is going well; a little tougher for my husband than me due to the anti-rejection drugs. My kidney kicked into action  while he was still in the operating room. His surgeon calls it the Little Kidney that Could, based on an older children's book called the Little Engine that Could. But I am over the hump. Yahoo.
A little bit better every day. :)
Many of you know what I mean.
So I am linking up to Bleubeard and Elizabeth's blog for this week's T day fun.
Hope to see you there.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Happy Mother's Day

We celebrate Mother's Day Sunday May 14th  in the US. To those of you who are Mom's any place in the world, I wish you a fantastic day.
Here's a photo of my mom, myself and my daughter taken last winter. I'm not up after my Tuesday surgery for the 2 hour drive down to visit my mom, but I wish I could. I will give her a call though as I can comfortably do that from the couch. :) 
I'm not yet back into making art, I'm much more into napping, reading and watching movies,  so far at least.  But I took my little walk to the mailbox and scouted out if I could find my bird feeder.
We had a large black shadow of a visitor last night.
 Before he went running into the woods, he reached back with one of hairy paws and pulled off my feeder. Then he made a dash  with it into the woods.
Bent my pole right over and there was no sign of the feeder.
I did manage to recover the humming bird feeder though-which I am sure he guzzled down as a little sweet evening drink.
I wish I could have photographed Mr. Bear for you, but I was only using the moonlight to see him. Once we put on the back light he disappeared-with the feeder. 
I'm getting antsy to get playing but since I'm not yet that energetic, I thought I would show you a few more photos of pre-surgery pages in my calendar and daily drawing journal.

And a big thank you to all the warm well wishes coming my way! I love you ladies for thinking of me!
Enjoy the rest of your weekend everyone!

Friday, May 12, 2017

I'm Home

 Hi everyone. Its Friday afternoon and I am lounging on the couch. I took my  walk this morning, as my hospital release says I am suppose to, and now I am just relaxing. Amazing how good I feel just 3 days after surgery. 
They say it is the walking. Its really hard to get moving, especially at first, and with the belly stitch pain who wants to move, but it does make a huge difference. 
I wouldn't have expected this at all.
I even said I might make it into the studio tomorrow to a little easy doodling. No lifting yet though. Not up to that at all.
I came home last evening and it was great to sleep in my own bed and see the dogs. The hubby will be home by this evening. I will be glad when he's back home. I will say the care at Massachusetts General Hospital was outstanding. Everything from the nurses to the doctors. Funny story, one of the nurse trainees was a former student of mine from many years ago and one of my nurses was the cousin of the woman who runs the doggie day where the dogs go and where they stayed while we were in the hospital. It sure is a small world sometimes.

Here's a page in my drawing journal before I went into the hospital. I was stating I was ready for surgery, but now I think I can say I am ready to be home and to recover fully.
Its just good to be back doing some of my normal things. That is the most comforting thing. :)
Wishing you all a wonderful weekend.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

He's a Discoverer

Meet Henri. Henri is the man I created, the butterfly man. The lepitopterist.. He is most happy when he finds a new species.
The background is made with various inks rubbed on the paper. And a little spray. I also stamped various butterflies in lots of colors before adding a piece of an old school filmstrip. Then I added Henri, and a few TH paper butterflies. 
I m linking up this grungy page to Gill's latest challenge at Art Journal Journey. The theme is Elegance and Grunge, and I am going for grunge today. :)
So its a grey and wet weekend here in my neck of the woods. I've wrapped up at work, and it was kind of a weird end to the year for me. Usually everyone is excited and the kids are practically dancing out the door, but since it isn't the end of the year for anyone but me, it just seemed like a regular old  Friday school day.
No cleaning up the room, no end of the year luncheon, no ordering supplies...
But its hit me more tonight that I am done. Rather excited about that actually.
So 2 more days until surgery. I'm ready to get it done and start the recovery process. Surgery is a BIG hump needed to get over. I'm not looking forward to surgery but I am looking forward to the after surgery and moving onward. And upward.
I've got a few books ready for reading. I've started the Italian author's Elena Ferrante Neopolitan series, and I've finished the first of the 4 books called My Brilliant Friend.
Book 2 is on my bedside table along with a couple of other books. I've also got a couple of Public Television series ready to watch,
 Victoria and The Durrells in Corfu, which I am excited to see.
And I'm going to work some more on my family tree research and hopefully a little art time too.But then I have all the way until August, don't I? 
I guess I will be laying low for couple of weeks or more. We shall see how long it takes me to get really back up on my feet. And then there's still my husband healing and even more so, his adjustment to immuno-suppression drugs so he doesn't reject my kidney.
There's so much on the down side of the hump, isn't there?
So I'm relaxing a bit this weekend and finishing up a couple of small things I want to get done.
And how about a little more Matisse?

A little good art is always very inspiring.
Enjoy the rest of your weekend. Since I'm not sure if I'll get back to posting once more before surgery or until I am home later on next week, I want to say if I'm not back, hope you have a wonderful new week too.