A little bit of everything…

Category Archives: Journal

It’s November 6th today – I know because I had to write a check. I can’t express how fast this year has gone for me. I feel like I should be spinning in circles or worse.

NaNoJouMo is going well! I spent last night digging around for paper and things to construct a 30 page journal from. I settled on a piece of tagboard for the cover and old book pages for the text block. I didn’t want to spend too much time figuring out how to sew it all together so I grabbed my masking tape and went to work. Three pieces on each spread is holding it together. So far so good.

I spent today taking care of the zoo and working on my first pages. I don’t think any of them are quite done yet but I wanted to share. The prompts can be found daily at D’Blogala but they are just there if you need them. Dawn’s reminder today helped me take the plunge. It’s not necessary to finish an entire page – Just make progress in your Art Journal. I’m proud of what I accomplished.

These are the pages that are “mostly done.” I can’t say I’m finished but I really like how they are right now.

"Inception" for NaNoJouMo

"Choice" for NaNoJouMo

"Fortune" for NaNoJouMo

"Equanimity" for NaNoJouMo

Here is a “work in progress” photo. The “Quarter” page needed to dry so I’ll certainly be working on that more. The page on the right shows the gel transfer drying compared to the more finished version above. For these pages I used stamps, gel medium transfers, print outs, metallic markers, metallic pens, Pitt artist pens, magazine scraps, book scraps, watercolors, watercolor pencils, manila paper and dried flowers.

Pages in progress for NaNoJouMo

My Daily Doodles are updated. Visit my Flickr set to view #88 through #94. Can you believe that I’ve doodled almost a hundred things? I’m impressed that I’ve stuck with it. Granted I have had a couple “catch-up” incidents.

I am looking forward to working on my NaNoJouMo art journal tomorrow. I had to stop because the sun disappeared. We set our clocks back tonight which means I will have some sunlight before I get to work but less chance of seeing the sun after work. I wish I could bottle the sun for taking photos and working on art. I really think I’m solar-powered. No sun means Sara has no energy. We’re starting the hardest time of the year for me – I sure hope I can do this… again.

Be well. (Don’t forget to check your smoke detector batteries!)

Occasionally my budget stomps on my happy and I have to figure out ways to spice up my life without spending a dime. This project grew out of my insatiable appetite for deco tape (also called Washi tape).

Deco tape is all the rage right now – fancy decorative tape to stick on packages, journal pages, notes and envelopes. Some people create entire projects using just paper and deco tape. Its inspiring and amazing. Click HERE to see what images Google gathers for “Deco Tape.”

If you’re like me, sometimes spending money is harder to come by than a yeti in a ballerina tutu. If you want some fun DIY Deco Tape to adorn your creative endeavors, grab some masking tape, wax paper and your permanent marker supply – It’s DIY Time!

DIY Deco Tape Supplies

First step is to tear a piece of wax paper approximately the size of a standard sheet of paper. Actually the size doesn’t matter much as long as its large enough to hold the piece of masking tape you tear.

The next step is to tear or cut off a piece of your masking tape. Any length will do as long as it suits your needs.

DIY Deco Tape - Decorate

Now grab your markers and get creative. Try stripes, shapes, patterns, amorphous blobs of color, words… trace things, use stencils. If you have permanent ink stamp pads, get stamping! I think its best to use permanent color. (Notice my disregard for staying inside the lines. My waxed paper is now decorated too lol).

DIY Deco Tape - Peel off the wax paper and have fun!

After you’re done decorating the tape, peel it off the waxed paper and go crazy with it.

DIY Deco Tape - Journal brightening

I cut bits off my tape and used it to tape some fortunes into my journal. Don’t feel trapped using it just one way – maybe grab some decorative edge scissors too!

DIY Deco Tape - Decorate a package

I’ve thought of using a small piece of wax paper cut to size of my day planner to keep some DIY Deco Tape close at hand. You never know when you might have to brighten up someone’s day – even your own. I loved using my first two pieces on a package I sent out. Doesn’t the envelope look much better?

DIY Deco Tape - Get Creative!

Currently I’m hoping to get different widths of masking tape. Wouldn’t a package look adorable with some brown kraft paper and tape? The holidays are coming up really fast and I bet I could have some fun.

I hope this inspires you. Please leave a comment if you give this a try. I’d love to see what you come up with! Be well.

My last post on January 7th was about the snow that fell on our small corner of the Earth. The following morning we awoke to more and all I could think was “Sara, you and your big mouth,” like I had challenged the snow gods to make up for the manageable amount that had fallen the day before. I’m not sure where I picked up that habit but I do it a lot. Any time something happens after I comment on the subject, I immediately place it on my list of whooopsies.

My Big Mouth 1/8/10

That was the last snow that has fallen in our area. But now because I’m typing this – I predict that we will get some very soon and my list of whooopsies will continue to grow.

Winter is a challenge for many of us. The shorter days and lack of sun can quickly lead to blue moods and a constant deficit of energy. In an attempt to keep my spirits up, I invested in more art supplies!

Daily Arsenal 1/16/10

Thirty new vibrant RoseArt markers to keep me happy and best of all they cost next to nothing! (My budget is on the side lines applauding loudly.) The markers alone are pretty and the rainbow colors can brighten the greyest of days but using them is what keeps me truly afloat. It doesn’t matter if I create a masterpiece or just outline a few letters, the point is I’m creating something. Here is a glimpse of the doodles that fell out of my markers while Matt, my parents and I were enjoying a game of Scrabble. (Somehow, I managed to win that game… I attribute it to the doodles).

Doodle Fun!

Some recent days have been harder than others. I can’t deny them because the struggles we face make us who we are.
[Edited to remove approximately 3 paragraphs.]
I’ve removed these words because it was more of journal selection than a blog entry. Not a bad thing by any means but I’ll summarize instead. Try to live your life in front of your own eyes.

Iggy Pup, our vivacious Boston Terrier, turned two on January 7th. Life is not always fun and it isn’t always easy but Iggy helps to remind me that it is all worth it. Small moments, like catching a few rays of sunshine during a lunch break or getting a kiss from your puppy can salvage a bad day. You can never take things too seriously, especially when you have Iggy passing gas in your immediate area. Also Iggy is great at reminding me that a nap now and again is perfectly acceptable.

Iggy Pup

Take care and be well. Find your happy thoughts today and keep them in your pocket.

There is a song that contains the lyrics “I want to want wash my hair in snow” … that lady is CRA-ZY!

Snow is beautiful. It gets you out of school when you are a kid but for the most part it just means more work for adults. If I could sit back and enjoy it for its beauty and magic, it would be one thing. If I could bundle up in an adult sized snow suit with mittens hanging from strings and my ear flap hat and make snow angels and forts until my nose got numb, I’d love today. Unfortunatley with two deadlines looming – Matt and I had to get up early and get to work – Snow or no snow.

the way to work

The drive to work was slow going and we didn’t see any plows. I find this terribly amusing since the last “snow storm” we had, which turned out to be more of rain and slushy mess, precipitated dozens of plows on the roads. I have an image in my mind of snow plows sneaking from behind one tree quickly ducking behind another – waiting. Waiting for us to finish shoveling so they can come and fill in the driveway and corner. Its like a big challenge. If we finish before the plows go by we have more work to do but if we wait to shovel, the plows will not come down our street. Its a conspiracy, I assure you.


Work was work and I’ll spare you the dramatic nonsensical chaotic happenings. After work the roads weren’t as bad as they could have been. I think we dodged a bullet to be honest. Last winter we had a blizzard which resulted in Matt and I digging out the car multiple times with my car shovel (thanks mum & dad!) and pushing the car. Our road was blocked by 4 feet of snow at least and even the bus routes were a blooming mess. Tonight was pretty easy going and it was very beautiful despite the shoveling.

snowy silent street

Things have been busy here. At least in my mind. I have been thinking of doing a “365 day” project. Perhaps a photo or a drawing or a doodle or a short story with illustration or a combination of any or all of the above every day for the whole of 2010. Sadly I haven’t committed to anything and just have a bunch of photos but not one for every day since January 1st. That saddens me. Some day I want to make a decision, stick to it and run with it through the ribbon at the finish line.

I have started an art journal though. I’ve completed one page and started a second. Here are the pages:

First Page in my Art Journal

start of art journal page

Matt and I did a short drawing session at the Southwest library on Wednesday. I felt very awkward and am not sure I have what it takes to draw figures.

library drawing

Matt is uploading his daily sketches to his Flickr pool so be sure to drop by and show him some love = http://www.flickr.com/photos/22411827@N05/

I’ve been fascinated by photo manipulation lately. Imitation cross processing and retro-vintage looking shots are very “in”. I gave Picnik a look and came up with these two edited photos:


Iggy Pup

I hate to end this post since I haven’t blogged in so long. I hope you will forgive me but with a double deadline tomorrow, I need some rest.

Take care and be well.

Finishing things give me such a great glowing feeling of accomplishment and success. I finished the baby blanket for my coworker Jonelle and her “in progress” baby boy.

finished baby blanket!

I gave it to her November 2nd. Wow that is awhile ago already. Here is a closer look of the stitches. I’m so pleased with how it turned out!

finished baby blanket

This month has been going so fast. Actually this entire year has flown by. In honor of November, many people take part in NaNoWriMo which stands for National Novel Writing Month. I knew this was not the year to try if I was going to successfully finish any of my current in progress projects. Since I have been trying to journal daily I thought a drawing or journaling NaNo was in order. NaNoJouMo, which stands for National Nonstop Journaling Month, was already in existence thanks to Dawn over at D’Blogala. She is providing prompts in case you get stuck on a day which I haven’t used yet but I am going to copy them all down and keep them in my arsenal.

Here are the results of my NaNoJouMo – Hope you like a few or some or all :D

Since I don’t have an November 1st, here are a couple of glimpses at the end of October.
journal doodle
journal doodle
journal doodle

November 2nd was a good day for crayons.

November 3rd wasn’t very eventful (top).
November 4th was much more enjoyable (bottom).
Nov 3 & Nov 4

November 5th was a good day to doodle a sleepy clock.
Nov 5

November 6th included “Hancock” which was a good movie – I was pleasantly surprised.
Nov 6

November 7th included a trip to Taco Bell where they said I was “Special” – or was it my taco?
Nov 7

November 8th culminated in my embarrassed realization that I often draw Iggy Pup’s coloring incorrectly (top).
November 9th was our first crock pot dinner of the season nom nom (bottom).
Nov 8 & Nov 9

Since the crochet baby blanket was finished, I needed to dive into my next yarn project. First I dove into my yarn stash and grabbed my favorite rusty orange and some other goodies.

Picking colors

I’m just doing vertical stripes of hdc (half double crochet). This scarf is coming together so quickly and will soon be sent to the awesomely talented Mia in New York!

let the scarf begin

Have you heard of Movember? Check out what Wikipedia has to say here. I made a few paper mustaches on Friday while at work. Don’t I look cheeky?

Happy Movember

There is also a “Hulk Hogan/Fu Manchu” and a “Charlie Chaplain” stored on the side of my work-mac just in case.

paper mustaches

Thank you for stopping by. Take care and be well.

This will be a two part blog post. Due to my elongated absence from posting, my plethora of abnormal tidbits to share is quite substantial. Lucky you!

Help Im In A Pickle

I began thinking about odd expressions in the American-English language. One I got hung up on was “in a pickle”. Such an odd saying since I can’t find any evidence of a person being within a pickle. I can safely tell you that no pickles were harmed in the making of this drawing (I couldn’t find one large enough).

new watercolor set

Matt and I have a knack for visiting art supplies stores when we are bored or have some spare pocket change. I brought home this set of watercolors from Michael’s. They were $4.99 and I had a 45% off coupon in my pocket. Love them! That robot’s arm is missing which explains his less than pleasant demeanor. Remember C3PO when he was disassembled? No robot enjoys missing limbs.

raking leaves

Autumn is an odd season for me. I love it on one hand but my allergies make me hate it and then there is raking leaves, and shorter days and lots of cloudy and rainy weather… Well, I tell people it is my favorite season so lets just go with that. Our raking adventure isn’t over yet – Saturday will be our final yard purge. I need to get the gardens ready for the winter and plant two more perennials that I’ve neglected thus far. Poor rakes, always being used and then put away in favor of snow shovels. I did discover that snow shovels make scooping up wet leaves much less messy on the hands than doing it the old fashioned way. Go me!

watercolor fun

Sunday I felt pretty much like the sock monster on the bottom of this page. But the sun was out so I gave her a pretty bow for her rays. Yes I am a dork. Are you just now noticing? By the way, the dates are wrong on this page and the last but have since been fixed.

Just a warning for chocolate lovers – the next photo is graphic.

chocolate abuse!

Yes. I encountered abused and neglected chocolate. That poor Hershey bar just wanted a chance to be loved and cherished and savored… poor poor chocolate.

Before I end this post, I owe you all a belated Happy Halloween. Iggy Pup was a pumpkin this year since I didn’t have time to alter his cowboy costume. Our lil Boston seems to have a very muscular physique and his chest was just too broad.

iggy pup in pumpkin costume

Take care and be well.

Have you ever woken up with a horrible headache? Yesterday morning I tried so hard to undo what was done but couldn’t re-wake up no matter how hard I tried. I tried breathing through the blankets, I tried breathing through one nostril and then the other but failed and nearly suffocated. Stuffy noses and autumn seem to go well together, don’t they? Heck, clogged sinuses and every season go well together for me. I tried massaging my temples, hiding under Iggy Pup and even smothering myself with my pillow. All to no avail.

What better way to document such a horrible beginning to a stressful day than with – a doodle page in your journal?!

Journal Page

So you see, a horrible little demon spore was incubating in my head causing the throbbing sensation behind my eyes. As the day went on, he grew wings and a love of slam dancing. I told my coworkers that in the event of my head bursting open, they should collect the pieces and capture the beast. What would be cooler than having a pet demon that came from inside your head? I could train him to do marvelous things like take paperwork upstairs and check the fax machine. By lunch I was certain that a ruptured skull was inevitable then as my plans to catch and tame this mythical entity grew and developed, I found myself without the headache. Had the lil booger reabsorbed into my brain tissue? Oh well. Maybe next time.

If you have ever had a wet sock, you will completely understand why I am on a quest for new everyday shoes. My right shoe developed a nasty crack which grew into a full blown chasm. Friday night it was raining and as Matt and I rushed around to get candy for our theatre excursion, it decided to rain. Puddles and cracked shoe soles do not get along very well. I found myself dragging a sloppy wet and cold right foot along for the viewing of “Where the Wild Things Are”. Luckily I enjoyed the movie and paid little attention to my squishy sock. I can happily report that as soon as we got home from picking up Iggy Pup, I put on dry cozy warm socks and my foot lived happily ever after.

Have you ever had more than one pet at a time? If one pet is eating one type of food it is inevitable that another will try to steal that food since it is clearly better than their own. Toby kitty is the worst at this. Toby will push his kitty kin out of the way and greedily scarf down their food. He also steals Cheerios from Ripley mouse and even has munched on fish food before. Iggy Pup’s kibble is not safe either… oh what a silly kitty I have. Oliver kitty has been diagnosed with kidney trouble. I refuse to say disease since it is in the early stages and he is well and happy. The food he is on is quite expensive and I’m thankful he is just a slender little frame with lots of fur who eats small amounts. Enter Jaba-the-Toby. If I don’t sit and make sure that Prince Oliver is happy and eating his food daintily, Toby will rush over and push in front of Oliver. Mister fussy pants, being a regal flame point himalayan, will turn up his nose and walk away – afterall, food that is good enough for the common kitty should not be eaten by royalty. The joys of pets – **sigh**.

The bottom doodle is of Matt. Yes he was changing his clothes and insisted he was drowning in his shirt. It was quite entertaining but I fear he was upset that I didn’t rush over to save him. There wasn’t enough room for me to dive in and lifeguard him to safety. Oh and for the sake of honesty, his pajama pants were dark blue with little flags on them – not the red I used. Sorry Matt – next time I promise to realistically portray your flailing attire.

So that is the summary of my doodle page. I hope you enjoyed the stories behind the doodles or at least the doodles.

Sharpie Pumpkin Face

Matt’s parents asked me to decorate their pumpkin on Sunday. I happily grabbed the Sharpie marker and got to work. Having just seen “Where the Wild Things Are” on Friday, the characters are happily inspiring me still. This pumpkin’s shape seemed to scream “Wild Thing!” to me. Now I just need to grab my yellow paint and go back to fill in the eyes and maybe some white for the teeth. What do you think?


Some days it feels like I’m being watched over. Some days I am. That is Lavinia kitty in the window watching Matt and I embark on our day.

Take care and be well.