Friday, September 22, 2023

Some Faces in my Iceland Journal

 Hi everyone. Happy almost the weekend to you. 

And before I go further, thank you for all your stories about my journal page yesterday, I loved everything that happened to Marnie. And I especially loved how everyone had their own stories, which makes the post so much more interesting. I hope Marnie ate a lot of yummy treats, didn't spill tea on her gown, successfully delivered the baby and saved the mother too.  And if she is waiting, I hope the time flies by for her, but that she does have enough time to drink her tea.

Today for Nicole's Friday Face Off  and Gillena's Friday Lunch Break .   I have some pages from my Iceland travel journal for you. I always bring home bits and pieces that I pick up along the way during any trip I take.  Then when I get home I make a junk style journal with those bits and pieces. It's a lot of fun to do, and I also find it helps me not only firm up the highlights from the trip, but keys in on some details that can easily  be overlooked in my memories of a  journey.

Here are some pages with faces for you. This first page commemorates me finally being able to see wild reindeer/caribou. I say finally because when I've been to places where reindeer/caribou are found, I've never managed to see any. Until Iceland that is.

I'm  a knitter, and  Iceland is known for a particular sweater style.  Of course I had to make a page about that. 😏The pieces of yarn stapled in the right hand corner are the colors of the skeins I bought and which I am knitting with now.  

On this next page is a piece of a photo I took that I used in the background, as well as a  vintage woman in National costume. This lady was cut out of a postcard I bought.

Just to show you how I use all kinds of ephemera to make a page, this page has a lot of paper "junk" that I picked up in various places, not just on my trip back in June.

It started with a postcard that was made to announce a class in paper marbling  that I picked up  after my trip. I also added a bit of painted tissue, but it's hard to see the silver paint on it in this photo. The colors  reminded me of Iceland; these were the first things I put down on my page. I then added the hotel room key holder from Iceland.  I put all the blue paint pen dots on it. I also glued down  the metal number one because this was my favorite hotel during the trip. I added a Tim Holtz craft supply person sitting on the top of the hotel key holder.

The photo below shows  the inside when you open up the hotel key holder. I added a little journal card note in the key holder, and I also glued down a piece of a map from a travel brochure to show where we were. Finally I used some thin  washi tape along the top. To the right you can see a card I picked up at a different hotel, but I haven't yet completed that page in my journal.

I have made a  few trip photo books with some photos I took, and one of the books arrived defective. I called the company where I had them made, and they sent me a new book. Now I have my defective book that I can  chop up.  That's where the photos on this next page come from.

And finally, here's a page I am not sure is finished or not. I finished the background, and then I added this cool sheep postcard I picked up. Underneath I added some Bingo pieces that came from a game my daughter had as a child. These pieces were still attached to their plastic strip holder, but I like how they look.

What else I'll do with this page, I'm not certain. Perhaps I'll just leave it as it is. 

That's probably more than enough for today. Enjoy the start to your weekend.

Thursday, September 21, 2023

Cleaning Off My Work Table

 Hi everyone.

Like many of you artsy folks, my work table collects lots of scraps and other bits and pieces.  The other day I decided to sift through them and make a page for Elle's Books, Cats, and Tea challenge at Art Journal Journey.

I started by adding dots and  a die cut circle. I doodled a red scalloped frame around it and added the white dashed line along the edge.  

Just like the die cut circle, everything else came off my work table and were arranged as you see them. The big tea word and the small tea word were on 2 freebie stickers I picked up at a BBQ place back when I visited Charleston. I cut out just the  T-E-A parts.  As an afterthought, I used some very watered down black acrylic paint on the part of the background still showing.

I think there's a definite story with this page. It all has to do with the beautiful lady on the bottom left. My version of this story is that Marny, the beautiful lady, is coming home from a very long and fancy  party at 4 in the morning. She is still too wound up to sleep, so she makes herself a cup of herbal tea (no caffeine as she eventually hopes to get some sleep) and sits outside her door, watching the night sky lighten up with morning.

What's your version?

Thanks for stopping by, and I hope your Thursday is going well.

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Silly Kitties

 Hi everyone. Happy middle of the week.

Today I have another journal page to share over at Elle's Books, Cats and Tea challenge at Art Journal Journey. I made this page in my new little Strathmore art journal. I am really happy with the way the pages hold up and don't curl (very much) when I use all kinds of media on them.

I inked the background pink and then I tore some scraps of this hot pink paper and used Matte medium to attach them.  Once everything was dry, I stamped the meow word and the fish skeleton several times around my page.  To give the colors a bit more depth, I splattered some darker pink watercolor paint on my page.

The kitties are an old Stampotique image from my stash that I stamped and sort of fussy cut. I am really trying to use some of my stamps that have been sitting unloved for awhile.  There wasn't a fish hanging off Mama's tail on the original image, but I added this small foam confetti fish. The fish in the bowl comes from another old stamp set from Hero Arts. That stamp set is ancient and was one of the first sets of stamps I ever bought. Before I added the fish bowl to my page I cut the black paper background shape to put around those silly kitties because the black helped them stand out better.

To finish off my page I added the little footprints (also foam confetti). I colored them in with a marker to also make them stand out more.   I also used a black Sharpie to add a border.

This week (so far) we've had a bit more rain and also some sun, and in between rain showers I snapped a few photos in the garden. Most of the  plants are reaching that end of the season-tired-look, but I think  plants are always as interesting at that point as they are when they're green and vibrant earlier in the summer.

My banana tree leaf after the rain.
And the 2 packages of zinnia seeds I planted in some pots back in May have produced some amazing blooms this year.

Ignore my feet in this photo (above).

And the gerber daisies are all starting to fade too.

I've had this fig tree since 1983.  Last summer I transplanted it,  and now it is full of new growth. It looks fantastic.  It will lose some leaves over the winter when it doesn't get so much sun in the house. 

This year I transplanted a couple of Boston ferns since they were also in the same pots since the 1980's. The pots had started to crack, and the ferns were terribly pot bound.  They looked great though, but I'm afraid I've done them in transplanting them. Fingers crossed they pull through. My aunt gave me some shoots which both of these plants came from, and she died at 97 a few years back. I'd like to keep the connection going-hopefully. 
And CJ mentioned a yellow wooly bear caterpillar recently. I had never seen one, but then, one morning, look what I found on my asparagus fern out on the deck. 

Pretty soon I'll have to bring my houseplants back inside because it will be too cool to leave them outside. That's always a day project because I first trim them, and there's always dead leaves and other droppings to clean up. Luckily I have a couple of places to put them because it seems the number of plants I bring inside is always double from what I brought out in the spring.  😏  And this asparagus fern has more than tripled in size over the summer on top of it. 

That's enough for me today. Hope your week is going well.

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Going Round in Circles

Hi everyone. 

It doesn't seem possible it's time for a new challenge at Try It On Tuesday, but 2 weeks sure do fly by, don't they?  Before I move on, let me thank everyone who joined us for  last challenge and also let me thank Cathy  who was our host also.

Our new challenge is
Going Round In Circles

That's a pretty self-explanatory challenge. all you need to do is use one  or multiple circles  in your creation.

OK, I really went all out with circles. Smile. But circles are such fun to play with.

I started with a gelli printed page that had some circles already on it. Then I traced some large and small circles using a stencil.

In the center of the large circles I stamped the dotted circle ring and also (although hard to see) the small sketchline circle. I used a paper punch and punched out the bright pink circles, and on each of those circles I stamped the words that are partially within circles. (This stamp set is an oldie from Technique Tuesday).  

After that I colored in the small traced circles and added some small pink felt hearts, just because my page needed something other than circles. Grin.

And that's all there is to my page. I hope you have as much fun playing with circles as I did, and that you join us at Try It On Tuesday with some circle inspired art.

This challenge runs for the next 2 weeks. 
Thanks for visiting.


Monday, September 18, 2023

T Stands for Pizza and Waves

 Hi everyone. It's time for T again. Last week I was home a lot and had a very good week crafting and reading. I even got in some gardening. After being mostly ignored for the summer because of the rain and humidity, my gardens really need some fall TLC before becoming dormant for the winter.

Last Friday night my husband asked me if I wanted to go out for lunch on Saturday. Now I knew something had to be up because he doesn't usually  ask me if I want to go to lunch in advance. What he actually  wanted was for me to go with him over to the  Portland, Maine area where his mom is now in a memory-care assisted living unit. That wasn't such a bad request, and we had a nice visit with his mom. I enjoyed seeing her, and she was happy to see us also.

Afterwards we went  down the street to get pizza for lunch. Here's my ticket for T this week over at  Bleubeard's and Elizabeth's blog.

We visited Pat's Pizza, which is a local Maine chain.
My "usual" is still the same one I always order when I go to Pat's: double dough, pepperoni and onion. For drinks we had  a beer.  It is called Lunch and is made by the Maine brewing company in Freeport. It's not only good, but its name was quite appropriate since we were having our lunch. 😏

We were only a few miles away from the coast, and because of what was Hurricane Lee, downgraded to post-tropical storm Lee at this point, I knew the waves were going to be interesting to see. The storm actually moved closer to shore further down east on the Maine coast and into New Brunswick, Canada. I saw on the news there were a lot of power outages and downed trees, but hopefully nothing more extensive.

After lunch, we took a drive down to the water. Some of the beaches were closed due to the surf, but we found a couple of coves to go check out the waves. I can't imagine how horrible the waves are during an actual hurricane because  we had some  pretty impressive views  in the protected coves where we were, and it was only a post-tropical storm in these photos. 

Here's a few photos from my Saturday afternoon.

The wind was pretty fierce, and a couple of times I thought my phone (as I didn't have my camera with me) was going to blow right out of my hands. This next photo is on zoom from one of the coves we visited.  You can see the waves over at the beach on the other side of the jetty.

It was hard for even birds to fly far, so I guess these commerants decided to hang out together.

I don't know this couple, but I like the photo.

And I'll end with a couple of photos of the traffic because we weren't the only ones who thought it would be interesting to go down to the beach. 

Have a great T day and week ahead. 

Sunday, September 17, 2023

A Cat in the Window

 Hello there.  How was your weekend?

I had a nice weekend. I was a little bit busy, but fun busy, and that worked.  Saturday we went down to the shore to see some wild waves from the Hurricane that moved  out to see, which I will share with you for T this week.  Sunday I went and picked up some apples at a local orchard because apple season, like all fresh produce seasons,  doesn't last all that long. And how can you go wrong with a crispy crunchy fresh apple when it is starting to feel like autumn? πŸ˜€

Today I want to share another page for Elle's Books, Cats and Tea challenge at Art Journal Journey I am also liking my page up to Creative Artiste Mixed Media Challenge. This time it is challenge # 97, and you can link up art creations as long as you use various types of media.

I made this page by using a yellow ink pad and rubbing it to give the background a little bit of color. I then made the window. The frame is from a die cut, and the inner window  is embossed. I then colored the window glass in, but I thought the colors were a bit too bold so I used a bit of gesso to dull them down. 

The birds are cut out from some printed tissue paper. The book is cut out of a printed page of paper, and the cat is a sticker from a vintage image sticker book.  And I finished my page by stamping a few small reading quotes. 

I really like this page and how I was able to use some random images and make them all work together.

That's all for me today. Enjoy the start of the new week. 

Saturday, September 16, 2023

Garden Post

Hi everyone. Happy weekend to you.

This past Thursday and Friday we had some great gardening weather. Finally.πŸ˜€

One thing I did was to continue some harvesting. This year I've had lots of tomatoes, even though with all the rain some of them had just rotted on the vine. Still, I've picked a lot of tomatoes.

The cucumbers have grown like crazy.  I've made 3 batches of freezer pickles already (they taste and are made just like regular canned  pickles but you don't need to process them or sterilize jars). And my plants are growing like something invasive or from something out of Little Shop of Horrors,  reaching right out of the garden fence in 2 places. I've never had such huge cucumber plants before.

My sweet peppers have done really well too, but sadly, my zucchini plants rotted in the ground.

I trimmed back my grape vine after I picked my grapes. I didn't get as many grapes as I usually do, not enough to make any jelly this year. Here's Friday's pickings. These are all the grapes my vine produced this year. 

This was my first year to ever plant potatoes. I was excited with my harvest.

Next year I think I'll do 2 or 3 grow bags of potatoes, not just 1. 
I also spent some time checking out the beehive, and those ladies are doing well.

I'm starting to think about winterizing the hive. The predictions are that it is going to be a long cold winter, which makes me worried about getting this colony through that season.

The wooly bear caterpillar is part of New England folklore when it comes to predicting the winter weather. The more black, the worse the winter. I saw this guy Friday, and the black ends are pretty short, and the brown middle is long, but wait, what's that black stripe along the top of the brown middle?  Does that mean winter is going to be long, cold and terrible?

Oh well, the reality is I'll have to wait and see. But first, I'm hoping for a very long beautiful autumn. πŸ‘

Hurricane Lee moved even further east yesterday, so unless there's a last minute path change, it looks like any bad weather should be gone fairly quickly. However, we won't be boating this weekend. With wave heights 6-9 feet near shore and 9-15 feet a few miles out from shore, I think it is much much smarter to stay on land.  But if you are in the path of the storm, I hope you are safe and sound. 

And I hope everyone has a great weekend.

And I'm also linking to Gillena's Sunday Smiles


Friday, September 15, 2023

Early Halloween Art

Hi everyone. Happy middle of September to you. This week sure flew by; even though I was busy it's not like I was that busy. Smile.  And since today is Friday  I am posting for Nicole's  Friday Face Off  and Gillena's Friday Lunch Break .

Last week I pulled out my box of Halloween craft supplies out of the attic.  It's a pretty big box because I have years worth of ephemera and some rubber stamps in it. I really need to use some of that ephemera so I can put a smaller box in the attic-grin. I am not a spooky or creepy person, but I love making Halloween inspired art. I think it's my chance to let my inner spooky, creepy person come out.😈 Plus, it is really  just fun to play.

 I have a stack of bingo cards that are made out of light cardboard. They came in a home bingo game my daughter had when she was little, and being a craft supply pack rat, I saved them when she was done with the game. Time to use at least some of them. Smile.

I decided I'd make a Halloween journal using the cards as my base.  I haven't bound them together yet because this way I can work on many cards at once (since in a bound journal if the pages are wet  you can't easily work on other pages).   These all have various faces, so let me share a few today.

Yes those set of boys are the same, only one image is actually bigger than the other. And I also know that the "bug" in the spider web is not a spider.  But maybe I need to add a spider.

And since there are a couple of mini black cats on the first page and also the third page features a bigger black cat image, I am also linking up to Elle's Books, Cat and Tea challenge at Art Journal Journey.

That's all for me.  We're still on the hurricane watch here. Actually more like the effects of the hurricane here since as of this morning when I post, I think Lee has moved further East into the Atlantic and will not be hitting us directly in NH. Hopefully  it weakens so wherever the storm makes landfall there is only light rain and winds.  Take care if you are anywhere along the storm's path. And thanks for visiting. Have a great start to your weekend.

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Tea for the Road

 Hi everyone.  Yesterday was one of those days that wasn't exactly a bad day but a day where nothing went as planned. I just gave into that early before the day sent my frustration levels over the top.  We also had some storms, and our humidity, which has been really tropical all week, finally, supposedly has broken. As I haven't yet been outside today (as when this post went live), I'm keeping my fingers crossed that that is true. 

The other weather talk going on in my area is the hurricane (Hurricane Lee). They're still not sure of the final track and where within the cone  it will hit land ; right now they're saying anywhere between Downeast Maine and the Canadian Maritimes. Any which way, there will be rain, wind and some tropical storm effects at my house, but we'll have to see what happens. (And wherever it hits, let's hope people stay safe.)

Today. I'm sharing another spread from my Iceland journal as well as some more Iceland photos. 

My spread is made by first using a writing designed stencil and some paint. Then I used a black Sharpie and a number stencil to add the numbers on the inner parts of both pages.  Once I finished my background, I attached the labels from 2 to-go sandwich wrappers. I also attached 3 (what we in the US would call) Coke Zero bottle labels.  I pulled all of these labels  off the bottles and with the 2 sandwich labels I cut away the rest of the wrappers.

I then added some stickers  that had something to do with other foods we had while on our Ring Road Drive.  There were a couple of donuts that made it into my belly, and the cookie represents some other sweets we tried. And finally, my cup of tea with a big smile on it.

That  tea cup makes my page eligible for Elle's Books, Cat and Tea challenge at Art Journal Journey.

And let me share a few more photos that go along with the scenery I shared this past Sunday. If you're interested  where we were in these photos (besides the obvious Iceland), we are on the northwest side of the island, south of the Western Fjords, and on the north side of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. We were heading towards Snaefellsnes National Park which is off of the Ring Road. 

I'll start off with this traffic jam, Iceland style. It also shows some cars and trucks which is the theme this week at Rain's Art and Dinner Date

This bus had gone off the side of the road. into the little ditch you find along most Icelandic roads. And yes, the road is gravel, but this is not considered a back road. Many of the roads in Iceland are not paved. Everyone who was stuck in this backup, maybe 15 cars, got out and went up to watch what was going on. We were stopped maybe for an hour, and some people turned around and left, but, as we were told, to backtrack around would take close to 2 hours, so it was better off to wait.

Plus this was real life and interesting to watch. At a few points it even looked like the bus might flip on its side, but luckily, it didn't.

These next 2 photos are a little dark (sorry), but we also had to stop so my husband (who's a civil engineer) could stop and inspect how they were building this new bridge. As he said they were building it with pre-cast parts, whereas at home, they are built piece by piece on site.

Although I appreciate bridges, I much more enjoyed watching the Icelandic horses in the meadows.

I love finding all the little churches in seemingly the middle of nowhere although obviously there are people living in the area who use them.

And an afternoon snack for the road is never a bad idea.

And as you drive through town, it's good to not speed.

As we moved closer to the park, the cloudier and wetter it became. Clouds and fog make cool photos, but they also let you not see as much either.

That's all for today. I'm slowly making my way through my trip photos, even though it is now September and we traveled back in (mostly) June.  Next time I share photos from the trip I'll show you some wet and cloudy views from the park.

Have a great day.