Tuesday, November 29, 2016

My recent art supply haul!

While on our trip to the mountains this past weekend I got to go to Cheap Joes in Asheville to spend some gift certificates Scott had given me and Clarissa for Christmas last year!  I was like a kid in a candy store and didn't want to leave!  I loved where they had the store, it was in an old warehouse complex that was being renovated into what looked to be a few other store fronts on the road and then in the back...studio space for rent!  I look forward to visiting the studios when they finish!!! 
 
 
I was so excited that I almost forgot I had a list of things I had made just in case I went blank once I got inside, and that is what happened!  They didn't have a lot in the store, which was expected if you've ever seen their catalog so I will complete my list soon online.  But this is what they did have and I can't wait to try it all out!  Lula Mae was helping me take the pictures...look at that sweet little hand there!  She was itching to get into her large easel pad there and we did after we finished these pictures.  I'll post those on FB, they were great!
 
 
First up was this Golden Fluid Acrylic in Raw Umber.  I have recently been influenced by the fall colors so that was the idea when picking out my paints.  I love browns and often Clarissa and I talk about favorite colors.  She always says hers is pink but when pressured to come up with an answer to this question I almost always say blue or green.  But this selection is brown...what?  Yes, I love brown too.  Recently I attended a Golden seminar hosted by Phil Garrett and was able to not only get a bunch of free, yes free samples but learn a little about each one and this is one that I thought could be used in mixed media collage because of the free flow of the liquid. 

 
This blew my mind when I saw it...it's a watercolor crayon!  I wanted black but they were sold out.  I think I can order it online though.  Burnt Umber...obviously I was feeling a little bit umber that day!  I wanted the entire collection but it was $128.00 I believe, a little much for me.


Next up is Liquitex Matte Gel Medium that I pretty much live by!  I love to use this as a glue or to make a surface matt to easily adhere other papers to.  I seriously thought about getting a hug jug they had but opted out thinking it might dry a little before I could use it all but it was a great buy!


Clarissa initially decided she wanted to use this drawing doll (not sure what it's really called) as a guide to making Barbie doll clothes.  But then in the car she changed her mind, instead it would be a way of displaying Barbie doll clothes in her room. 


Lula Mae being silly as we were sorting through what she called the "mommy paints!"  I like that!


I picked these spatulas up because I only have one that I found at a thrift store and love how it works with paints and gel mediums.  Mine is just a regular spatula, look at these cool blades on these and the pack was cheap! Look at that little toes in the background!


These easel pads were a great size 14" x 17" I believe and Lula Mae was so excited to get started painting in hers.


These Gelli plates were at the top of my list and I couldn't wait to find them and feel them to really get an idea of what it's all about.  I plan to use these as soon as I can get down to the studio!  I still need an acrylic plate though, I hope to find that at Home Depot.  I'm excited about both sizes but the 3" x  5" is such a great little portable size.  The other is 8" x 10".


Another Golden product, High Flow Acrylic Fluorescent Green!  Can't get any better than this, just a dash over some burnt or raw umber!  MMMM!


Lastly, I finally got me some Tim Holtz Alcohol Inks!  The colors are awesome!!!
 
Lemonade
Honeycomb
Bottle
Mushroom
Ginger
Mountain Rose
 
I'll post soon on how all of these products where used!  Including drawings and paintings from Lula Mae and Clarissa!  

Sunday, November 27, 2016

The Polar Express!

The Polar Express and the Smokey Mountains was a magical way to start our Christmas holidays!

We ate a late Thanksgiving dinner with the family Thursday and then rushed home to pack for our little adventure into the mountains. 

We stayed in Nantahala Falling Waters Yurt Village for the night after our amazing ride on the Polar Express in Bryson City.  I love the name of the town Bryson City, it sounds so exciting and it was!  The little town was bustling with excitement, people were shopping, eating and playing in the streets, most with their jammies on waiting for their turn to hop on the Polar Express.  All this while the train was coming and going from the station filled with children, their parents and even grandparents to travel to the North Pole.  It was a cold evening that added to the setting of the night and when the train whistle blew it was loud!

We hopped on the train around 6:35pm, which is the time I highly recommend.  It was good and dark and pretty cold.  We road first class on the Carolina Shine car and it was worth the extra bucks!  We got hot chocolate in cool Polar Express mugs with homemade chocolate cookies, goodie bags, dancing waiters, sung carols, a chance to talk with Santa who gave out a silver bell to everyone!  It was great and the looks on the girls faces was worth every penny!

FYI, if you are interested, there was great shopping in the Bryson City near the train depot.  A great way to get your Christmas shopping started!

We spent the afternoon at the yurt in Nantahala Falling Waters in the Smokey Mountains.  Thankfully the weather was perfect with a warm day, cold night and no rain!  The village was cute and quaint with 8 yurts to choose from.  We got No. 8 up on the highest spot.  It was up a steep rock stepping stone hill on a little cliff overlooking the water and small waterfall below.  At night the wind was howling and the yurt was a like a fancy big tent with a deck.  It was quaint, decorated very well and towels and sheets provided!  It was a short walk to the very clean and warm bathhouse.  We were slightly separated from the yurt community but not too much.  Every two yurts had a communal camp ring and at the bathhouse there was a communal area with games and chairs and a drink machine. 


Five of us fit comfortably in the yurt!  There was queen bed and a queen futon to sleep on, sheets, towels, blankets and coffee for all! 


There were plenty of places to put your stuff...

There was a little frig and coffee maker.

Each yurt had a bench to sit and read or just chill in the woods...

The doors were cool...double doors with curtains (code to unlock door so you don't have to fool with a key) that stepped out onto the deck.

The forest was green, red, orange and yellow.  We were surprised how much color was still around and we were totally not affected by the fires in no way visually.  The air was clear.  The only thing we couldn't do was build a fire of any kind...there was a burning band because of no rain and the existing fires.

There was a little lake, outside games, trails to follow and look outs to enjoy.



Bryson City shops at night!

We even got a golden ticket that the conductor punched just like the movie!


The girls had so much fun on our "kick off the Christmas holidays" trip that they said (while on the train) "we have to do this next year!"  Then when we got home they decided to draw pictures about the trip!  We had a great time and will be booking our trip soon for next year! 

Yurts
The Polar Express

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

My first time in Washington, DC July 2016

Sorry this post is so late in the year, I've been a little bit slack lately!  Just living life to its fullest!!!
Scott had a trip to Washington, DC come up at the last minute at work so, we went...without the girls.  July in Washington, DC was much like being at home, it was hot, hot, and hot!  But we made the most of it and had some fun.  In some ways I wish the girls had been with us to have seen some of the monuments but I'm just not sure they would have understood it just yet... 

We stayed at the Water Front...this was the really big farris wheel outside our room.  We did not ride it!
 
The US Capital...it was extremely amazing.  We got to visit the Senate and the House!  It was really cool to be in the same room that the presidents had been in!
The Abraham Lincoln monument was my favorite!  It was HUGE and really amazing!  Picture do not serve justice!


Again, to be here was special and quite breath taking.
The Washington Monument was so big, I couldn't get it in the picture frame!


I loved Scott's choice of t-shirts that day!
The White House!


Arlington Cemetery was not what I had expected, it was much prettier and very hilly.



The Potomac River was a bute!



We had a great time for 4 days in Washington, DC.  We did as much as we possibly could do in those 4 days.  We didn't make it to all of the monuments and I only put up a few pictures, not all of course.  I didn't want to bore you.  I think the girls will enjoy this trip a few years from now when they can understand a little bit of the history of our country. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Gray hair!

It's not happening fast enough!  I've decided to go gray, or at least see how far I can make it... I'm at 6 weeks so far.
FYI...I'm not fond of selfies!