Monday, April 30, 2018

T Stands for Japanese Fast Food

Happy T Day everyone. Last Tuesday I was traveling to Kyoto, Japan and missed out on the T Day fun and our wonderful hostess' bearthday celebration. But I am back today, still a bit jet lagged and still  overwhelmed with all the photos I took. But when you don't have a lot of time, fast food is what you might want. Right?  Maybe. 
Well the Japanese have a unique relationship with fast food.
How about your dinner out of a vending machine? :)
Now I didn't try it, but of course some of the kids had to. They said the food tasted like leftovers you bring home and then reheat in the microwave.
Of course. :) But you have a pretty good selection if you are really hungry.
And to wash down your gourmet meal, you can pick from water, soda or some unique Japanese drinks. I did use a vending machine for drinks many days, but I never did use this one in a hotel that served Japanese beer.
And as you may know, vending machines are everywhere in Japan.
Here's one sitting on the top of a hill. To reach it you had drive up this narrow dirt road that wound back and forth through some orange groves. In most spots this road was only 1 lane wide. Even our  van driver (we used the hotel van to get around while we were south in the city of Nichinan at the beginning of the trip) had never been up to this spot.
And yet, sitting in the grassy field where you parked was this vending machine.
The views of Nichinan from beyond this lot were pretty impressive.

So I guess if you are up there on a hot day you can quench your thirst.
And that looks like a cooler on the right side of the sign.  Not sure whose that is or why it is there, but I guess you can keep your drink cold.
So stop by Bleubeard and Elizabeth's blog and join in the T Day fun by sharing a drink related post of any kind.
And I will leave you with a few more photos from the the ruins on the top of the hill.

Have a great T Day ladies.

Sunday, April 29, 2018

I'm Home

Konnichiwa. I am home from my Japan adventure and have missed checking in with you folks for the last 10 days. Hope all has been well and everyone is enjoying spring, finally.
I had a fantastic trip and have lots of photos and stories to share. Japan is an amazing country and I feel like I had a rich experience visiting.  I do wish we had had a couple more days, which I think is often normal when traveling, but I am also glad to be home.
My trip started with over 20 hours of traveling before we reached the small city of Nichinan. Nichinan in on the big southern island of Japan (not counting all the the small islands that form a chain off of this island)  called Kuyshu and it is almost  at the southern point of the island. It's is  lush and tropical and very pretty.

I must say I enjoyed it after our very long nasty winter.
We spent 4 days in Nichinand (as it is our sister city) doing official business and sightseeing.  From there we flew to Kyoto, the historical heart of Japan for a couple of days and then we took the bullet train into Tokyo for the last few days. It was busy and fun and I will say the 8 kids who came with us were great, as well as the 4 other teachers I traveled with.
I'm keeping this short as I have yet to really go through my photos and am also trying to get back into the home time zone. Japan was +13 hours. Yawn. My brain doesn't know if it's time to go to bed or time to get up. :)
Plus it's back to work in the morning. UGH!!!!!!!!!
But you can be sure there is more to come since I took well over 1000 photos.
Happy new week.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018


I am about to be off on a BIG journey  and won't be home until the end of the month.
Here's a page in my calendar journal that I colored and doodled. Then I stamped some Asian images and added this postage stamp I had in my stash. I made this spread a few weeks ago but have saved it for this post. Thought it would be the perfect art piece to leave everyone with.
Japan, here I come.
I won't be posting, but promise to come back with lots of photos to share.
Hope everyone has a fantastic next 10 days and spring weather arrives in everyone's world.
 I will see you all when I get back.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

T Stands for Breakfast

Hi everyone. It's another raw and damp Tuesday, and a good day to have a nice BIG breakfast.
Back in March the hubby and I tried a new place to eat  a couple of towns south of us. We actually went in for lunch, but the breakfast looked so yummy we decided to have brunch instead of lunch.
 A chili cheese omelet, homemade toast and a cup of beans. So much food you had to roll m back to the car.
 I decided to try a mug of their chai and boy was that a great cuppa of tea. I could go for one right now.
Tuckers is a small New Hampshire chain. They have a huge menu and I highly recommend it for anyone who might be in the area, although I know many of you are far away. I will go back sometime when I'm in the local of one of their restaurants.
I'm joining up to Bleubeard and Elizabeth's blog for the T for Tuesday post. Time to share your drink related posts and we'd love you to stop by if you don't usually stop by.
Running a little late this morning so if I don't stop by your blog now I will be by later today. 
Have a great Tuesday everyone.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Monday Again

Happy new week everyone. Monday has rolled around again.Hope everyone had a good weekend. More rain in my forecast today, and it's a bit icey this morning. The icy rain woke me up last night and everything outside is slightly white but very glazed over. It is supposed to get above freezing today and hopefully this icey white melts away with the regular old rain that is going fall and fall and fall.
I was hoping to be more ambitious yesterday but the dreary dark day zapped a lot of that hope. I can't say it ended up being a very productive day, even artwise. I was a bit frustrated as I had a list of things I felt I should do. Oh do I hate those lists in my head because after you take a step back you realized none of it had to get done.  The pile of clothes I need to put away and all the dog hair on the floor, well, we'll just live with it a little bit longer I guess. :)
But all in all it was a good weekend, I got my running around done on Saturday and yesterday I did manage to get more packing done and lounged on the couch reading.
Here's a spread in my Night Sky journal called Eclipse. I began with the diagrams of eclipses (left page) cut out of an old book. I mounted it on my page which had some printed tissue on it first. Then I found this piece of a printed acetate in my stash and decided to finish the page off with it, along with some paper tape and some cut out words. 
So then what do you do with the right hand side? 
I abstract painted the eclipse, did some doodling, some stamping and used the outside of scrap paper that I cut a star  out of. The lunar word is cut out of a scrap of an old poster. 
There's bits of collage and bits of recycling in this page so I am going to link up to Alison's great challenge at Art Journal Journey.  It's been a great challenge this month and I've been having fun making these pages.  This is most likely my last page of the month since as many of you know I am off on Thursday and I won't be back until the 28th.  So thanks Alison for the great challenge.
I will be by for T Day tomorrow so see you then.
Thanks for visiting and hope Monday is going well.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

A Dark and Dreary Day

Hello everyone. It's a dark, cold and dreary Sunday morning. Looks like the next few days will be dark and dreary too here in my world. 
Here's a page from my Nature Journal that I am linking up to Alison's great challenge-Recycle and Collage at Art Journal Journey and also over at the Recycle Challenge at Try It On Tuesday.
Not the best photo at the edges, but between the little gemstones I added right at the edges  and a bit of a page curl, that's what you get.
This looks better!
So I started with a sheet of this tropical botany paper which I tore and collaged onto the page. I mixed my matte medium with some brown ink to give an vintage look, but decided it was too brown. So I covered over most of that with more of the torn and collaged papers but decided I'd leave a little bit showing.  I used a TH found relative. I decided he looked like a botanist on a journey to discover some new plants, so I added a hand doodled and cut out botany book, as well as the magnifying glass, also hand doodled and cut out.
Then I added the title which is cut from a flyer I received in the mail, and some little green gemstones.
I'm being lazy this morning but I need to go do a load of laundry so I can pack this afternoon. I must say I don't enjoy packing and the whole leaving part of a journey. Although I am very excited to go, I just want to get there and begin. Knowing I have a 14 hours direct flight from Boston, a 45 minute bus trip to another airport, a 90 minute flight, and then a 45 minute bus trip until I reach my destination is rather overwhelming. 
But not so overwhelming I would rather stay home.
Hope everyone is having or had or will have a great rest of your weekend.

Friday, April 13, 2018

The Power of Positive Thinking

Happy Friday everyone.  
I am ready for this week to be over, but I am happy to report there FINALLY are some signs of spring.
Here's a photo I took last summer. These birds are the Eastern phoebe, a type of fly catching bird. Ever since we bought our house 28 (almost 29) years ago, there has been a pair living up under the the eaves of the outbuilding. They never return until the weather is about to change. Some years it is in late March and some years it is in mid April. And I am happy to report I saw one of them the other morning!
And under a coat of leaves there were some crocuses blooming in my garden. I was hoping to rake up those leaves before they bloomed. My lawn is bare and I raked in the fall, but those last few oak leaves fall so late and always end up in my gardens.
Now I tell you this good news and the morning weather reports we could have some "MIXED precipitation on Sunday. Oh my!
So my page today is a definite recycled page from my Nature Journal.  I used this very colorful and dried out baby wipe as a background I attached to my brown paper journal page. I liked the colors and organic feel it had. Then I attached a vintage plant stem diagram (it's an overhead transparency from, I think, the 1960's) that I picked up when one of my co-workers was cleaning out some of the things in her classroom. I added some white tape and a frog stamped image. And letter stickers spell out the word THAW. 
 After a couple more finishing touches, I used a wet brush and some white paint to make some splatter. 
Here's the complete spread. Some white big paint blobs landed on the burlap side. Ignore the reflection glare on the right side.
I am linking up to Alison's challenge at Art Journal Journey which is Recycle and Collage.
Anyone have some fun plans for the weekend? I'm trying to do a few things I need to do before I fly out on Thursday for Japan. That included getting my packing organized. Why do I feel like there is so many things I need to remember to  bring? Unlike just a fun trip, I need work clothes for  couple of events and  a day at our sister school. I've got my list going but I will feel better when I get most of it packed.
That's all for me. I've babbled on enough. Happy almost the weekend everyone!

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Waiting for Flowers

With the lack of a real spring, I have been consoling myself with some colorful pages in my Nature Journal.
I began this page by using remnants of a pretty napkin and some scraps from a book page. Then I put a few drops of some distress re-inker on the page and rubbed it in.  Once dry, I used red paint and used an alphabet stencil to give it a little texture pop.
I added a little strip of paper tape and some trim at the bottom. The tan trim was 
the edge of a thick piece cloth trim I used in another project. I wanted the scalloped edge but not this straight edge on my other page, but it works well here, so why waste the leftovers?  Now for the big pop of color. I doodled my flower, colored it with markers and added it to the page along with a few little metal crafty bits that look like hardware.
I am linking up to Art Journal Journey and Allison's fun recycle and collage challenge.
All is well here.  Maybe a little more warmth today, which would be great. I want to get out and do some raking, but it's been rather raw and chilly, and now today, when they say warmer, they say it could rain. Well I might be out in my raincoat raking, ha-ha. Only 1 more week to go before I head out on my big adventure and it is the one thing I would like to get done. We shall see.
Hope you have a happy day.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018


Hello everyone. I wrote this last night (Tuesday) as I half watched some tv. One of the dogs needed to go out and when I put the backlight on, low and behold it was snowing hard enough to make the ground all white. What is this?  I don't think we are going to have any kind of spring at all this year. :(
So maybe my April showers page isn't quite realistic. Or maybe it is wishful thinking on my part.  But here is a recent spread I made in my Nature Journal.
I stamped the raindrops and the quote, and I made the big white and yellow flowers using some cloth and paper scraps that I cut rather randomly. I used these wooden game pieces as the centers. The dark green leaves are cut out of a piece of leaf printed art paper.  I also cut the tall flowers from some scrap paper and added some circles that were die cut from some mat board scraps. I used a crayon to color them red and then I used a Sharpie to put the dots on them.  Finally I painted their leaves.
I am linking up to 2 different recycle challenges. The first one is Try It On Tuesday. The second one is Alison's fun challenge over at Art Journal Journey
So fourth quarter starts today at school.  That means we are into the last 9 weeks of classes. Wahoo. It's always exciting when we get to this point as it means another year is winding down and we are getting closer to summer.
(Of course now we just need the weather to cooperate so it seems like we are getting into the last couple of months.)
Hope everyone is having a wonderful day-and as always-I appreciate your visit.

Monday, April 9, 2018

T Stands for a Few Assorted Photos

Hi ladies.  Happy T Day to you all.
Tuesday is time to share your drink related photos or art over at Bleubeard and Elizabeth's blog.
So for my drink related photo I have this bottle of wine to show you.
Three Sunday's ago I attended the  bridal shower for my nephew's wife to be. They are to be married next month. At the shower they played bridal bingo and I was the first person to get bingo, so as a prize I won this bottle of wine.
I saved my bingo card (which is completed because I continued to play after I won) and put it into my drawing journal for that day.

I haven't tried the wine yet ,but one of these days I'm going to enjoy a big glassful.
And I tried out Kathy's recipe for chocolate chip cookies in a cast iron pan this past weekend. I printed the recipe she used from America's Test Kitchen, and began by browning some of the butter.
 Then I mixed the batter and spread it in my cast iron pan to bake.
They came out great and it made my husband happy since chocolate chip cookies are his favorite..
And I enjoyed trying something new. I got to use my cast iron pan, which was actually my grandmother's! It got me thinking about her and remembering her with a big smile.
Stop of over Hummingbird Woodland Studio to check out Kathy's blog.
I'm going to link up to her cast iron Friday post this week.
And lastly today I have a recycled collage for Alison's challenge at Art Journal Journey.
It's another page from my Night Sky/Space journal.
I used several photos from an old atlas, as well as these circle dots I made by printing a photo of one of my Gelli prints on a circle sticker sheet. I thought they looked rather like abstract moons.
Hope everyone has a fantastic T day and thanks for visiting my blog today.

Sunday, April 8, 2018


Hi everyone. Hope everyone had a great weekend. I had a very relaxing weekend and other than walking both days, I stayed home the whole time. I managed to get many of my spring/summer clothes sorted out and my bags of winter clothes put away in the attic until fall. I even found time for a nap both days too. Wahoo!
We still have a chilly wind here, but I did notice a bit of green in some of the grass in my lawn yesterday. Now it is just a bit, but it's take a little before the whole thing turns green And there were robins in the yard. Robins are usually one of the first birds back in the spring. :) Hope  the weather warms up this week like they say it will.
Here's a spread from my western journal to link up to the masculine theme at Moo Mania.
I used a lot of paper tape and some left over black die cuts from when I was solar dyeing last summer.
And how about a few more snapshots from my little road trip to Peabody Essex Museum.
Georgia O'Keeffe (1887-1986)  was an American painter who actually became famous during her life. She is known as the Mother of American modernism (quoting from Wikipedia for that one).  Her fame began while she was living in New York City in the late 1910's and grew when she began her flower paintings and also when she moved to New Mexico and painted some southwestern scenes. 
Last week I went to see an exhibit of her life at the peabody Essex Museum. This is one of the photos they had on display.
Here are a collection of many, but not all of her paintings they had on display.
 This was one was one of the most fascinating to me because it is such an early work and very different than her famous style. 
But that is the only one like this, and then we moved to her later work.

It was great to see more of her paintings even if I was a little disappointed with number of paintings they had. But there were photos of her and some of her clothes which I did enjoy. I will show you those another day as this post is already on the longish side. 
Thanks for visiting.