Tuesday, August 19, 2014

A New Art Journal,Tea, and More

  It's "T" uesday again and time to join Bleubeard and Elizabeth for "T Stands for Tuesday". You don't have to drink tea or coffee- but it's nice to share a cuppa/glass/mug of something while visiting the linked up participants:) We share art, families, books, drinks -pretty much anything your heart desires! Please consider joining in-we'd love to come visit you too and Elizabeth always has enough to share with her guests.

 I needed a new art journal so I got this Canson 7"w x 10" h. mixed media journal-a new size for me-and guess what- the perfect size for using up the deli paper prints made from the 8" x 10" gelli plate! As I've said before I am determined to use as many of my prints as I can because I am dying to make more! So I began gluing some down onto the blank pages. I enjoyed a bottle of Honest Tea green tea with a hint of honey -nice and refreshing on a really warm day.

 Here are some of the pages I covered:

 A few weeks ago I shared this collage of our cat birds and nest:

  The eggs hatched just before we went on vacation:

  And when we got home again they were already gone. So, I plucked the nest and used it to decorate the center of my bistro table:

  The Simon Monday Challenge Blog theme for this week is "anything goes" so I'm sharing this card I made recently:

 Products used: lg white note card (canvas Corp); white card stock (the Paper Studio); patterned paper (Stampington and Co.); washi tape (Recollections); clear stamp (Stampabilities); Versafine Onyx Black ink (Tsukineko); digital collage image (Paper Whimsy); paper flowers (the Paper Studio); fancy button (Dress It Up); Grand Calibur die cut machine, Labels 8 dies, Big Scalloped Circles Lg dies (Spellbinders; Stickles gold glitter glue (Ranger).

 And lastly another yummy,tasty and healthy summer side:

                                                              Grilled Zucchini Sticks     (RECIPE AT END OF POST)

 These are flavored with a chipotle blend seasoning and I loved these so much I made them twice in a week-just for myself :) Hubby did try one but he will still only eat zucchini in cake! Sorry, that will have to wait until I get tired of making these.

          "Trade your expectation for appreciation and the world changes instantly."  Tony Robbins 


                                                        Grilled Zucchini Sticks (serves 2)

 2 med sized zucchini, peeled and cut into even sized sticks     2 or 3  tsp olive oil

 1- 1/2 Tbsp chipotle seasoning         gallon size plastic bag

   Add all ingredients into the plastic bag and move around to coat the zucchini. Place on a grill plate in a single layer onto a hot grill. Turn to grill remaining sides. Note-I made the original recipe in the oven as directed the first time but much preferred  a HOT grill so they wouldn't get so soft as zucchini contains a lot of water.


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Back To Reality...

 After a really fabulous 11 days at the beach and being unplugged it actually feels good to be connecting and arting again. I'm still editing photos but you can see a few in my last post. I had every intention of getting through more of my drawing lessons from the Draw Your Awesome Life class but with good friends and perfect weather I just couldn't bring myself to do any of it. However, I'm ready now!

 I combined several challenges to create this page including Art Journal Journey-for this month's challenge of Frida kahlo; Mix It Monthly-for this month's theme of Crazy Dresses; and the Simon Monday Challenge for the theme this week "Scratched Up-embrace imperfection and get grungy". I'm also linking to Art Journal Every Day and Paint Party Friday.

 I was fortunate to get to a special exhibit showcasing Frida's art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art back in 2008. This exhibition was brought in to celebrate the hundredth anniversary of the birth of this Mexican artist (1907-1954). The art was incredible to be able to see up close and there were over 100 photos of Frida and her circle from her personal collection. Truly a memorable experience.

 For the background I layered on a thick coat of gesso with a palette knife then made marks into it. Once dry the DTP technique was used using Distress ink pads (Ranger) in assorted colors. Frida and butterfly images are from ARTchix Studio. I made the dress from a gelli print paper and stamped the pens (Stampers Anonymous Tim Holtz Collection-Artful Artifacts over it. Edges of image were sponged with black ink before gluing to the pg. Flowers, fabric bit and gold glitter glue(Ranger) were added to embellish. Rubber stamp (Hero Arts International Skyline) was stamped along the bottom. Quote(Stamp Camp) was stamped on white card stock and cut apart. Once glued in place I smudged charcoal pencil around the words and image for depth.

 While at the beach I did mange to watch the video for the August calendar as prompted by JoAnne Sharpe's DYAY class and get most of it finished before I got home:

 The small wings and title are all glittery but I just couldn't capture it. It's a shame because this spread looks so much better in person. The prompt was to use butterflies, fireflies and dragonflies- or any other flying things like bees- for our dates to write in. Linking this to Kate Crane's Calendar Project.

 One last challenge piece is this card:

                       I'm linking this to the Simon Wednesday challenge for the theme of "summer".

 It will be so fun catching up with you and seeing what you all have been up to lately. Please do visit these challenge blogs (some offer great prizes!), be inspired, and join in-you are welcome anytime!

                "Find ecstasy in life; the mere sense of living is joy enough."   Emily Dickenson

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Beach Therapy


 We are home once again after an AMAZING 11 days in Fenwick Island, DE with our friends! The weather was perfect the whole time and the laughter and fun never stopped. And for the first time we went on a little sight seeing trip to nearby Berlin, MD one day- a charming and quaint Victorian town. Once I get pics organized and edited I'll share the town where Runaway Bride and Tuck Everlasting was filmed.

 I have missed you all but I kept my promise to myself to disconnect from the phone and PC (outside of deleting emails each AM, and watching my online calendar lesson for Aug.-the only art I did!) so I have LOTS of catching up to do.


 Each year for our big beach trip I like to make a little something for the girls. This year I made fabric starfish using summery batik fabrics. These were inspired by my friend Becky Shander and her article and projects "Stars of the Ocean" in Sew Somerset Summer 2014, pgs. 82-85.

 We only ate out one night (everyone took turns making the meals) but I just have to share part of our dining experience in Bethany Beach, DE at Sedona restaurant because it was an unforgettable dinner:

 This was only some of all we had including salads and bread. The menu changes a bit so unfortunately I cannot make you drool with the descriptions of these dishes. Hubby proclaimed we were having food o's!

 This was our lobster night - a tradition Trina has had in her family for many summers at the beach- and we have taken it on now:)

 We began on the deck with champagne (what else do you have with lobsters?) and corn on the cob while Lobster Queen Trina prepared the main course (A few yrs ago I made the crown she is wearing-complete with a moving lobster toy. Lynne was also given a crown for her expertise in cracking and dismantling lobsters :) Our wonderful friends and beach house hosts Lynne and Chad are in the bottom rt. photo. I am joining back in with Bleubeard and Elizabeth for T Stands for Tuesday!

 One more art project:

  Had to take some time away from cleaning, laundry and errands to make a bit of art for several challenges including  Mixed Media Mojo (tags); Mixed Media Monthly (stencils and paste); Mix It Monthly (crazy dresses) and Simon Monday Challenge Blog (scratched up-embrace imperfection and get grungy). Would love for you to play along!

 The tag was first stencil embossed using a word stencil (The Crafters Workshop) and coarse pumice gel (Golden). Several ink sprays were used after the tag was completely dry. Edges of collage images, words (ARTchix Studio) and tag were sponged with Black Soot Distress ink (Ranger). Image was embellished with Gold Stickles glitter glue (Ranger). Paint dots added with black paint marker(Deco Color Marvy Uchida). White dots added with white gel pen (uni-ball Signo). Foam tape was used to adhere words and image. Asst. fibers from my stash.

  Looking forward to catching up with everyone!

              "By the deep sea, and music in its roar: I love not man the less, but Nature more."

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

A Little Summer Break From Posting

  As summer is going so quickly I have decided to make this my last post for a bit while I take in summer fun and festivities with my family and friends. After this week I am going to limit computer time and even art time. There is art and music and food to share here right now though so let's get to it shall we?

 It is "T Stands for Tuesday" with Bleubeard and Elizabeth once again. Last week I mentioned celebrating Bastille Day a bit. It didn't end there. Soon after I posted I got a call from my Mom who put together a little impromtu fête to celebrate in total French style! Being it was a work day it was just she and I and her friend Elizabeth and son Geza. Elizabeth lived in Paris some years ago and always said it was the best times in her life. Yes, I indulged and enjoyed every  sip and bite of our celebration:

  French music was playing whilst we enjoyed baguette slices, croissants, French cheeses and crackers, paté, fruits and bien sur le vin français  -tchin! tchin! (My Mom's in the middle in the bottom right photo).

 I made two more newer summer foods this past week that I'd like to share:

 Black Bean Cakes . These were very easy to make and have great flavor (think cumin and coriander)! I make a batch and freeze some to make for myself when hubby is having meat.

    Tuscan Bean Salad-I could live on this!! Another vegetarian meal and hearty enough to be the main dish. This recipe makes a lot so you may want to halve the ingredients.

  I couldn't get this song out of my head lately so I thought I should get it on paper-in my journal. Of course I'm sharing the song along with the art :)

   I started on a page that already had yellow green paint on  along with some spattered green ink spray. I scraped yellow, pink and orange acrylic paints across the top to create the sunset sky. In keeping with using my gelli printed papers as in last week's pg. I tore strips and glued them at the bottom then loosely drew some waves with a crayon. Boat and sails also cut from printed papers. Words and boat outlined with a charcoal pencil and smudged a bit. Linking to Mix It Monthly for the theme of "boat/sailboat", the Simon Monday Challenge blog (theme is "hot fun in the summertime"), Art Journal Every Day and Paint Party Friday. A bientôt mes amis!

" We should not forget to enjoy the experience of daily creativity, whatever that may entail."   Diane Carter

                                                         Black Bean Cakes (makes 4)

 2 Tbsp. Smart Balance Butter ;divided        1/2 c. finely chopped onion   1 Tbsp. minced garlic

 3/4 tsp. ground cumin       1/2 tsp. salt      1/2 tsp. ground coriander    1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper

 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper     1/4 c. panko breadcrumbs      2 lg. eggs, slightly beaten

 1 14.5 oz can unsalted black beans,rinsed and drained     1 Tbsp. lime juice

  Heat a med. skillet over med. heat. Swirl in 1 Tbsp. butter and when melted add onion and garlic. Cook 4 min. Stir in the cumin, salt, coriander, red pepper and black pepper;cook 30 seconds. Remove from heat; stir in the panko and lime juice. Place beans in a bowl and coarsely mash with a fork. Stir in eggs. Stir in onion mixture. Divide into 4 portions and gently shape into patties. Heat a pan over med/high heat and add remaining Tbsp. butter. Add patties to pan and cook 3 min. each side until browned. Tip- do not try to flip them before browning as they are a bit delicate at first and may fall apart a bit.

                                                    Tuscan Bean Salad (makes 10 cups)

 1 c. barley      2 cans great northern beans, 1 can garbanzo beans, and canellini beans(approx. 15.5 oz ea.)

 1/2 green, 1/2 red pepper-1/4 inch diced            1/2 bunch green onions,thinly sliced

 1/2 c.  sundried tomatoes,chopped       1/3 c. prepared basil pesto    1/3 c. white wine vinegar

 3 Tbsp. Italian parsley ,chopped    2 Tbsp. olive oil        salt and pepper

  Bring barley and 2 1/2 c. salted water to a boil on high in lg. saucepan. Reduce heat to low; cook,stirring occasionally, about 25 min. Drain, rinse with cold water. Rinse and drain beans then put in a large bowl with remaining ingredients. Season to taste with salt and pepper.


Friday, July 18, 2014

Sailing Thru Summer

   Still managing to get art and blogging done but that will wind down awhile as I get into a few weeks of beach time/planning and art deadlines. First up is another journal page I created using gelli plate prints (determined to lower that pile so I can make more:):)

  This was created with the Mix It Monthly theme in mind which for this month is "Sailboat/Boat". The one sail is a recycled postage stamp but the rest is gelli print papers. The UM stamp (source unknown) reads "no hour with the ocean is ever wasted...ever".

 The challenge at The Mixed Media Monthly Challenge Blog is to use household items for mark making in your art. Here's what I grabbed to use on my page:

Clockwise from top- corrugated cardboard scrap, a wine cork with string tied around it, mesh from the top of a crate of Clementines, bottle cap, the ripped spiral bound edge of watercolor paper, cardboard tube, prescription bottle(the top is round and the bottom squared-double duty!), and makeup sponges.

 This is the background after the painting and mark making:

 And here's what I ended up with:

                          I flipped the page to use horizontally after spying this stencil on my table. 

 Products: acrylic paints; Dylusion Ink Sprays (the splatters); Mini Silhouette Script 6" x 6" stencil (Balzer Designs); paper flowers (Recollections); rhinestones ( Nicole Crafts).

 I am also linking to  Art Journal Journey (Flower Power theme); Paint Party Friday; Art Journal Every Day; Creative Every Day; and the Simon Monday Challenge ( About A Face theme). Looking forward to see what you all have been up to this week!

                                         "What is art but a way of seeing?"  Thomas Berger