Thursday, April 2, 2020

New Summer Folk Art Painting

I started a new painting and it feels great.  I can tell I'm a little rusty when it comes to ideas, but it's been fun.  My Christmas and autumn paintings are my best sellers, but I need some sunshine in my life right now and I'm sure others feel the same way.  This is a remake of a scene I had painted on a  fireplace screen I did many years ago.  It's a horse farm and will have children playing in a pond so I'm looking forward to getting to the fun part.

Rick and I have spent a couple days out in the sun with Daisy cleaning up the yard.  Is the sun shining where you are?  I hope there will be flowers to put in pots this year.   I love gardening and I need flowers!  I have little violas popping their heads up and I may move some of those around.

We are homebodies normally and I'm fine with staying home.  I just wish I'd been prepared with mulch and annuals.   Missing my kids too!  I pray each of you are doing well.  Get creative;  it really helps.  How are you staying busy?

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

A Kitchen Makeover Before and After

 After having our floors refinished in January, we decided to go ahead and put in new countertops.  We've lived with pink countertops for 20 years and they honestly didn't bother me too much because I'm the tightwad in the family.  They were here when we moved in back in 2001.  Rick's been wanting to do this for a while and I finally gave in.  After it was all finished, I told him he was right.   So, we proceeded to box up everything from the open shelves, items on the counters, and everything in the lower cabinets.  

On March 10th, before we started self isolating due to the virus, the guys arrived to install the new quartz countertops.  It was quite an ordeal to do considering the hutch top that sits on the counter.  They did a beautiful job and installed our new faucet and the farmhouse sink.  

I can't seem to get away from the pink!  See that stripe above the countertop where the backsplash was removed?  I have subway tile propped up there.  Once this self isolation is over we are having the tiles installed.  My daughter, Amber, and I took a class at Home Depot and walked away saying, "No way are we attempting that."  

The kitchen is now a light gray that I painted several months ago.  I made new kitchen curtains since we were "staying home" now and  I ordered my fabric online through an Etsy store.  Glad to help out fellow Etsy shop businesses!  

I love painting walls.  I know that's kind of weird, but with the white countertops I can now paint the walls whatever color I want.  Paint is a cheap way to decorate.

The kitchen is "Daisy" approved too!  

This was the before.

Can't wait to have farmily and friends over for dinner!

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Refinishing Our Hardwood Floors

 Life has changed so much this year.  Back in the middle of January we had our floors refinished in the dining room, entry, and living room.  We lived like hoarders for a little over a week with all our furniture piled up in the kitchen and the family room.  It was crazy trying to watch our KC Chiefs win the Super Bowl over the piled up mess.  We rearranged everything so that we had full view of the  television screen.  What an amazing game!

I must say that I'm so happy we went through this ordeal and that it's over!  It's an amazing difference.  I will never let them get this bad again.  It was practically dust free!  The only dust we really had were from the boards that had to be pulled up and replaced.  

This is what Daisy thought about it.    We found a wonderful dog sitter just down the road from us and she stayed there for a few days while they were applying the varnish.  Thanks Marianna!  

Have you gone through this process before?  I must say I was amazed we were able to stay in our house every night and just left during the day to help work on our daughter and son in law's new home.  

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

It's Mom's Fault

This happened last night.

I had moved my yarn basket to my art room because Daisy is obsessed with yarn.  I keep the door closed.  If I leave it open while I'm painting, she sneaks in quickly and grabs a skein while I'm painting.  Apparently after cleaning up my brushes last night, I forgot to close the door.  Rick is telling her that this is not acceptable and she listens to him intently.  She also loves to tear up all the yarn labels.  I do keep my expensive yarn in a box that she can't get into.

Daisy told Rick, "In all fairness, it's Mom's fault.  She left the door open!"  She's your basic two year old.  
How's your self isolation going?

Monday, March 23, 2020

Our New Buddy, Daisy

 Our New Buddy, Daisy

Since our world and lives have changed tremendously and we all have to stay home, I have no excuse to not post.  I have been keeping up on Instagram though.  You can check that out here.

Last year on November10th we adopted our new buddy, Daisy!  We were so broken hearted over loosing our two beloved companions, Jersey and Lady, within a few months of each other last year and we took some time before jumping back in.  

How could we resist this little girl!  I love how she lays totally flat.  She actually looks like she's planking on her way down to this position.  She was aproximately 18 months when we got her and she's very much a puppy and on top of that she's a "Mystery Terrier".  Rick keeps telling her we are senior citizens and she's going to have to adapt to our lifestyle.  Ha!!  She wears us out, but we love her and she make us smile and laugh alot.  

She has been learning some manners during this time of social distancing.  But, the problem is when all this is over we have to go back to teaching her to behave around company.  She's a little wild when people come over.    We will have to start all over with that training.

Oh, and she sits on her knees.  Sometimes she looks likes she's kneeling to pray which is good because we could use more prayers right now.

I'm praying that all your families are doing well and this will all be over soon.  
In the meantime, I'm starting a new painting!  No excuses anymore!  

Sunday, December 15, 2019

The Making of a Folk Art Christmas Painting

I've been trying to find time to sit at my paint table this year to do a little creating and I have to admit it's been a challenge.  But, recently I've been feeling more inspired and had to pick up my brushes even if only for a couple hours at a time.  The most difficult part is seeing the vision for my canvas.  Sometimes it flows naturally and other times it comes in bits and pieces.  I started this painting a little different than usual.

Normally I paint from the top down,  but I was having a difficult time picking a theme.  I knew I wanted a general store / mercantile in the center and a Christmas tree in the front, so I started with the buildings first. Finishing each house helped me to start to see the vision and sometimes things change as the painting developes.  

Evergreens were added and the road through the town took a couple changes.

More snow was added (this is the fun part) and landscaping helped to settle the houses into the scene.  Finally an idea came to me to add tiny cross country skiers to the stop of the hill along with a cozy cabin where they could warm up by a cozy fire. 

A small truck was added on the road heading to the general store and two snowmen in their finery were added to each side of the tree.

That is how the painting "Village of Snowflake" came to life.

Margie and Dave own "The Mercantile" in Snowflake.  Cross- country skiers love to gather around the potbelly stove to sip hot cocoa or coffee before heading back to the slopes.  The store is stocked with everything from snow gear to groceries.  Delbert who owns the local tree farm is delivering a Christmas tree in his green pickup and will stop in to say hello and pick up some groceries before heading home.  The children in the village enjoy building snowmen, skiing, and having snowball fights.  As the sun goes down the windows start to glow, Christmas trees twinkle in the windows, and the scent of sugar cookies magically clings to the crisp cold air.

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Our Sweet Dog Lady

On October 11th our beloved Lady went to join her best friend Jersey.  I'm sure they are happy to be running around together again.  We lost Jersey back in March and Lady was completely at a loss without her.  She would occasionally stand at the bottom of the staircase and bark once as if to say, "Jersey come down here".    Lady had lost the ability to climb those stairs though sometimes she would surprise me and make a run for them only to find out she couldn't get back down.  

They would run to the laundry room every time I went in there to fold clothes and beg for treats!

They loved Christmas lights.

The girls standing upstairs amazed by the tree on the landing..

Ready to come in out of the cold

She had lots of health issues steming from Cushings Disease and a broken heart. To lose two dogs in such a short time has been extremely difficult.  

Cushings disease caused her to have lots of skin problems, so we started having her hair clipped short.  I loved hugging her even more because she felt like a chamois after a clipping.

She loved laying with her dad each night on the recliner.

We are so happy that she got to go on our first camping trip to Wallace State Park.  We weren't sure how she would do so we didn't go too far in case we had to go back home.  She loved it though!

Lady was a Golly (Collie and Golden mix) and was the most gentle dog we've ever had living up to her name.  She loved everyone including children but was a little shy.  Needless to say, it's very quiet around here now, but we are taking our time to get over this before jumping back in with a new dog.  

I'm walking Jersey and Rick is walking Lady in this painting "Dog Day's of Summer".  

Miss you girls!

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Memories of Our Sweet Dog, Jersey

 I've been putting off this post for a few days because it simply hurt too much.  Last Saturday morning we found out from our vet that Jersey was in kidney failure and it was so bad that we had to do the humane thing.

Jersey was my constant companion who was always by my side.  She sat beside me everyday in my paint room, following me every time I got up or went downstairs.  At the end, we were packing her up and down the stairs.  She suffered with an enlarged heart for several years and took several medications twice a day to keep her heart going and the fluid off.  Her will to live was amazing.  Several times through the last couple years we thought we were at the end when she would quit eating and then she would always amaze us like the energizer bunny.  
She was always very camera shy and would generally run when she saw someone aiming a camera or a cell phone her way.  

Jersey has been depicted in my artwork over the years.  In this painting she's being walked by a lady in a red polka dot dress.

Our other dog, Lady, stands at the bottom of the steps barking for her to come down and it breaks our hearts.  Lady can no longer climb the stairs.  They were very close companions and are the same age.  Lady is a little too big to pack up and down the stairs, but Rick still does it occasionally.

I can't believe she let me put this hat on her, but she knew her momma loved buffalo plaid.

Jersey is also the dog I'm walking in my blog header and at the end of each blog post.  
Missing her so much!

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Village of Winterset Christmas Folk Art Painting

I started this painting well before Christmas and it came to a halt for several weeks. 

In February I forced myself to sit down at my art table and hoped that it would start to flow.  I've been in a state of creative block and finally after I painted this stone house, it started to come together.  It felt really great to be back painting and visualizing this Christmas village.  

After Christmas, I slowly began to pick up my brushes and push myself.  Please excuse these two photos from my phone.  I didn't take the time to get out my camera to take pictures while I was working. As the weeks went by, I found myself slowly getting back to enjoying myself and just letting it happen.

"Village of Winterset"

In the rolling hills of Winterset family, friends, and neighbors are busy getting ready for Christmas.  The welcomed snow blanketed the earth putting everyone in the spirit of the holiday.  Snowmen appeared out of the glistening snow, evergreen boughs and trees decked the village houses, and snowball fights erupted cheerfully.  Smoke flows from chimneys and snowflakes gently fall reminding us that:  "Snowflakes fall from heaven above, sprinkling us with our Father's Love".

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Valentine Cupcake Mugs

I hope everyone is surviving this freezing weather!  I'm a little weird, but if it's not windy, I love the feel of cold crisp air.  I'm not going out when it's below 0 though!  We got down to -8 but by Saturday it's supposed to be in the 50's.  Welcome to Missouri winters.  
Recently, I started working with a company to produce some of my artwork on mugs.  I'm so excited about their white camp mugs!  Valentine's Day is coming soon and these mugs would be a great gift filled with some sweet treats.  

These are available in my Etsy store here.  
It takes 3-5 business days from the time you place your order until they are shipped, so get your orders in now to assure delivery in time for Valaentine's Day!  
They come direct from the company that makes them and they package them beautifully.
They are dishwasher safe too!    


Stay warm!!

Just an update to add that if you would prefer ceramic, over this metal camp mug, I can make that happen too!  I just listed one for the "Be My Valentine" design and would be happy to do the others if anyone is interested.