Monday, 28 December 2009

MONDAY PHOTO-A-WEEK

This will be the last Photo Monday for 2009! I'm not too sure if Linda, our group leader, plans to continue with the Photo Monday group in 2010 but I'm kinda hoping she will. I have thoroughly enjoyed participating and getting to know our group members throughout the past year.

I thought I'd share a quick sketch I did today of the purple vacuum cleaner I bought at the Boxing Day sales. Yes, you read right.....it's PURPLE! I don't think I've ever seen a purple vacuum cleaner before but I LOVE IT!



Now, from vacuum cleaners to gardening......a few weeks ago, I noticed a sweet potato shooting sprouts so I sat it outside under the pergola. I didn't have the heart to throw it away so it went from this -



to this -




For seven years now, we have lugged around this potted avocado tree from house to house. It belongs to Beau and he grew it from seed.....it's huge and weighs a ton! Beau has begged me to put it in the ground on numerous occasions but, we have only lived in rental homes and, I seriously doubt that a landlord would want THIS type of tree in a small suburban back-yard. It would grow huge if it were planted in the ground! We have heard that potted avocado trees can take up to seven years before they start bearing fruit. It must be getting close.....



In recent months, Beau decided to plant yet another avocado seed and, as you can see from the pic below, it's doing quite well.




Of course, I'm certainly not looking forward to lugging TWO huge potted avocado trees around in the future.

I can only hope and pray that the mango seeds Beau potted a short time ago don't take....

Love, light and peace

Sunday, 27 December 2009

Soup for dinner....YUM!!!

We have pretty much recovered from the hustle and bustle of Aaron's birthday celebrations and Christmas. Yesterday, Aaron and I braved the Boxing Day sales to take back a movie DVD - Ice Age 3 - which was missing a disc. Yes, it was one of Aaron's Christmas gifts though I do LOVE the Ice Age movies myself. So, we arrived at the shopping plaza before the stores opened and I was quite surprised that there really wasn't a lot of people lining up for the infamous Boxing Day Sales. Of course, it was raining very heavily at the time and it continued throughout the day so that may well have had an impact. Anywhoo, Aaron and I arrived at the mall for 7:45am - we exchanged the DVD, had McDonald's hotcakes for breakfast, and were back home by 9am. This gal does not muck around!

Today has been pretty much about kicking back and relaxing. I got back to doing some arranging in the garage as it got put on hold for a couple of weeks when the workmen came to repair the walls etc. from the termite damage. I also rearranged my new studio area a little more so that I could fit an extra table in there. I LOVE IT!!

I decided to make some creamy cabbage, corn, and vegetarian bacon soup for tonight's dinner. It's soooooooo DELICIOUS! This soup is now a family favourite and it's a recipe I found here at Vee's cooking blog. I pretty much stick to Vee's instructions though I do use vegetarian bacon in place of real bacon and I use cornflour at the end of the cooking time instead of regular flour at the beginning of the cooking time. As Reece and Aaron are not veggie lovers, I've yet to convert them but the way I see it....it's their loss ~ :(

pigma micron pen and coloured pencil in A5 sketchbook
Click on image to enlarge


It's my understanding that Americans don't celebrate Boxing Day so, for those who don't know about Boxing Day origins, check out this link.

Love, light and peace

Friday, 25 December 2009

~ Peace On Earth ~


It's now 5:30pm on Christmas Day and it's been such a beautiful day spent with the kids and my parents who were all here for Christmas lunch. The weather was overcast for most of the day which kept the temperature down...so just PERFECT! I did most of the food preparations yesterday so it made things a lot easier for me today. I am feeling very happy and content right now though my feet are aching so, as soon as I've finished this post, I'm off to take a nap and take the weight off my feet.


I wish you all a very Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays!!!!!
May your day be filled with love, contentment, happiness and lots of laughter. xox

Love, light and peace

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, AARON!!

My last born child and the only American in the family. You were born in Wyoming and you were the perfect Christmas present!

At two months old - you were doted on by all the family



Around 1½ years old - flaked out on the couch



Around 2 years old - you loved the beach and liked to wade in the little waves with your siblings



Around 3 years old - photo taken at the Day Care centre you attended a couple of mornings a week



Around 4 years old - OH, look at those eyes!



Around 5 years old - you modelled a lot for your older brother, Beau, when he took up an interest in photography



Around 8 years old - with your sister, Michelle, at Wellington Point



Taken earlier this year at 10 years old - with, Cody, your fur pal


How fast you seem to have grown over the years. I'm very proud of you, Aaron, and I love that you and I share in lots of activities together such as crafts, art, and photography. Life is never boring with you around.

I hope your 11th birthday has been a happy and fun day for you.

Love Mum xo

Monday, 21 December 2009

PHOTO-A-WEEK.....am i lucky...or what?!!!

In the past couple of weeks, I've considered myself extremely lucky to have won, not one, but three blog giveaways! I was sooooo thrilled and thought that would have been the end of it as the old saying goes...things happen in threes, right? So, imagine my surprise when Michelle called me this afternoon and told me to go and check out Linda's latest post. I ask you.....what are the odds?????!!!!! I'm almost expecting the X-Files theme to start playing here......but Linda drew my name five times in a row! I'm stunned and me thinks I need to get my butt to a newsagent and buy myself a Lotto ticket ASAP!

I have decided to post about my giveaway wins as they arrive in the mail.....and lucky me!...because my first prize win arrived today from my dear blog friend, Vee. I LOVE visiting Vee's blog! Not only does Vee have a great sense of humour but this lady is TALENTED big-time! Check out her OH SO CUTE needle felted bears here and here. Vee's Flickr and Picturetrail sites are well worth a look-see too because she also creates the most gorgeous dolls. I have been a staunch admirer of her cute little bears for some time now and.....thanks to Vee.....I am now the proud owner of one! YEP...part of the mystery prize that I won on this post turned out to be PINKY! The most adorable, cutest, teeniest bear EVER!!! I love her to pieces! Vee also spoiled me with some of her handmade Christmas origami ornaments AND some gorgeous fabrics in my favourite colours of purple, greens and blues/aquas (as seen in the pic below).



....and a close up of Pinky.
Isn't she adorable?

click on any image to enlarge


Needless to say, I am a very happy, little vegemite
and feeling VERY spoiled!


Love, light and peace

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

OH what a night!!!

A couple of months ago, Bradley won two tickets for Beau to go and see Fleetwood Mac in concert. Beau chose to take Bradley and, last night, was the big event!!! However, all went to hell in a hen basket when I got a call from Beau early on in the evening to tell me that Bradley was vomiting.....OH NO!!! Luckily, he made it to the Men's Room in time but, unfortunately, it put an end to their big night out. This was to be Beau's very first concert too but he only got to see the support act. Naturally, we all felt so bad for both boys.


On a positive note, the tickets didn't go to waste as Beau gave them to a couple of people who were waiting outside. They were very appreciative and offered to pay for the tickets but Beau refused being that Brad had won the tickets for free anyway. I guess someone else had a great night out instead. Would you believe that Brad did not vomit since then though he was running a fever and feeling very sick. He's on the mend today as it's one of those 24 to 48 hour tummy bugs. I don't know if it was my mind playing tricks on me or not but I felt queasy when I woke up this morning and it continued for most of the day. Thankfully, no more signs than that.

Thank you for all the wonderful comments I received for my blog's 3rd birthday!!! I hope next year will be even better as I have a few plans up my sleeve.

Love, light and peace

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

It's my blog's 3rd birthday TODAY!!!

Pigma micron pens & coloured pencil in A5 sketchbook

I can hardly believe it's been THREE whole years since I first started blogging!! During that time, I have met the most amazing people who I now feel privileged to call my friends. We are kinda like one big, happy family and I am so very grateful for the regular visits, comments, and the support everyone have given me. THANKS to each and every one of you! Yes, that means YOU too!

Love, light and peace

Monday, 14 December 2009

MONDAY PHOTO A WEEK - 31s and Zilch

On Sunday, Brad, Aaron, and I went over to Mum and Dad's place. I had organised for them to come here initially but Sunday morning was muggy and hot so, as Mum and Dad have air-conditioning, we didn't need any convincing to change plans. I took all the salad fixings over there and Mum helped too. We had a lovely salad lunch which was just perfect considering the hot day.

Micron Pigma pen, graphite, and coloured pencil in A5 sketchbook
Click on any image to enlarge


During the afternoon, we played Zilch (a dice game) and 31s (a card game) and Mum was the winner on both counts.

My Mum - the Winner



Mum and Brad were in the final 31s showdown



Dad's help still wasn't enough for Brad to win the showdown



Mum and Dad's cockatiel - Charlie

Isn't he gorgeous?


We all had a lovely time at Mum and Dad's.....though, come Sunday night, it was a different story. Poor Aaron came down with a virus and was up all night vomiting. Naturally, that meant I was up all night too. He is doing a little better today.......and at least the vomiting has stopped.

Btw, did you catch the great giveaway on Michelle's blog? Michelle is hosting a giveaway for another artist who does such gorgeous work. If you haven't already checked it out, it is definitely worth a look-see and it's not too late to go into the draw. The winner will be chosen on December 17th.


So.....how was YOUR weekend?

Love, light and peace

Friday, 11 December 2009

CHRISTMAS TREE, MAGENTA BUDDHA AND TERMITES

Hi everyone!

I'm still here but have been a little preoccupied with other things this past week such as a little painting and sketching, some Christmas shopping, more clearing in the garage to make room for tradesmen to work, and watching DVDs with the kids. I also caught up with some blog reading which I always love to do. In fact, I probably spend way too much time doing that but hey, what can I say....I love reading blogs!

The heat has been absolutely horrible this past week and I feel like it zapped all my energy. It's truly sauna-like conditions here with the humidity so high. At 11pm last night, it hadn't changed which made for a very uncomfortable sleep. Forecasts say we may get a storm tonight so, hopefully, it won't cause any damage like the last one did but will cool things down instead.

On Monday, we finally put the Christmas tree up. It has always been our family tradition to put the tree up on December 1st and then take it down before the New Year enters. This year, we held off and waited for Beau to be available as he bought us the new tree last year and he's the only one who remembers how to fit it all together. It's one of those fibre-optic types with lights so there are electrical cords everywhere.

Pigma Micron pen, ZIG pen, & coloured pencil in A5 sketchbook

Click on any image to enlarge






More sketching.........Mum gave me a Buddha many years ago and I decided to give it a new look. Previously, this Buddha was the typical dark cherry red colour but I have now gone with a bold magenta. WOW! What a difference! I painted the frame of Michelle's print in a pale yellow-green and it sits beside the Buddha and they compliment each other perfectly.



Watercolour crayon, ZIG pen, & micron pigma pen in A5 sketchbook

OH, remember those termites we discovered way back in September? Well, it took the landlord/property manager three weeks to actually do anything about it which happened to be when I discovered a second area of termite presence, on top of my constant phone calls and emails. They finally had the termite control guy come out to check it out. Thankfully, he said the termites we had weren't the aggressive type. He then came back two days later and drilled tiny holes in the suspect areas and loaded the wall cavities with a pesticide of some sort. Now, two months later, they have come back to repair the damage. The repairs involved cutting out the wall area and removing the internal nest and damaged wood and plaster/gyprock. Each of the various tradesmen who have been dealing with us over this issue have said that we were very, very lucky that the termites only caused damage to two small areas. Someone up there must have been looking out for us. Mind you, the pic certainly doesn't look like it was small damage but I guess the tradesmen have seen a lot worse. All that nest you see in the pic was pulled out from inside the wall cavity. Incredible, huh?! That small section that is cut out in the pic was only cut out so they could remove the nest. They actually took away three feet of the wall in width, from cornice to skirting.


Today, the plasterer came and put up the gyrock sheeting ready for the painters who will hopefully finished the job early next week. I'm just so relieved that it will soon be over with and things can get back to normal around here.


How has your week been?


Love, light and peace

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

First day of summer & a messy space

Yes....summer is here!



Micron pen and coloured pencil in A5 sketchbook
Click on image to enlarge

Today, Michelle came over and helped with more sorting, de-cluttering, and organising in the garage. We still have quite a ways to go. We managed two car loads to the local recycling station and/or dump and there is still more to go, and to organise, and to put away as you can see by the pics below. I'll just be glad when it's all done because all the lifting and sorting is playing havoc with my back right now.










All the mess you see in the pics has been moved out of cupboards and shelves so that we can re-sort and re-pack them into different areas to make more room. I doubt I'll get much done tomorrow as my back is usually always worse the next day but, over the coming week, I'll gradually make my way through it all.

I'm currently using the new Blogger Editor and I'm not too sure if I like it yet. I'm used to working in the HTML section but this new editor doesn't have the option to upload pics in the HTML view....not sure I like that.

Anywhoo, I hope you are all off to a great start for December....YIKES!!!

Christmas is nearly here, folks!!!

Have you done your Christmas shopping yet?


Love, light and peace

Monday, 30 November 2009

MONDAY PHOTO-A-WEEK - More storm pics

For my photos this week, I thought I'd share more pics I took this morning of the damage caused by the storm that passed through this area yesterday.


You can click any image to enlarge it.


This is just outside the fence-line of Aaron's school. It was like the trees had been knocked down like dominoes.




This was an area just inside the school grounds



Some form of framework/scaffolding at the local athletics club was all twisted around



This home had parts of its colourbond fence blown away



The clean-up crews will be kept busy for most of today, I would say



It's been another very hot and humid day so I'm just praying we don't get another storm.


Love, light and peace

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Lunch, good company, and severe storm...

Today, Brad, Aaron, and I went over to Michelle's and Alex's house for lunch. Alex's Mum, Karen, and her partner, Alyce, were also there and we all had a lovely time together chatting about this, that, and everything. Michelle and Alex spoiled us with a delicious lunch of homemade quiche and salad. I had the mushroom and tomato quiche and it was so YUMMY! It was a perfect lunch for the hot, humid day.

Pigma Micron pen, watercolour crayon & coloured pencil in A5 Sketchbook
Click on image to enlarge

Whilst we were still there, a pretty bad electrical storm moved through bringing some hail with it. Shortly after the storm passed, the boys and I headed home. I was shocked to see so much debris from the storm lying all over the roads on the way home. Michelle and Alex only live a 7 minute drive away and, as we got closer to home, the damage seemed to get progressively worse. YIKES! There were tree limbs and branches lying on the road and, only two roads from where we live, the power-lines were down which I think was due to fallen trees. The whole lane had been blocked. It was scary and also quite surreal. In the pic below, you can see the power lines down and lying on the road in the left-hand side of the pic.

Click on image to enlarge

As the storm hadn't long passed through, residents were out directing traffic safely into the oncoming lane while they waited on the emergency crews to get there. Thankfully, all was well when we arrived home. I had been worried about Cody due to his fear of storms and being home alone after a very hot and humid day but, luckily, Beau arrived home just before the worst of the storm hit. I was relieved to find that we still had power to the house so we must be on a different power-grid to the fallen powerlines. I rang to check on Mum and Dad who live about a 12 minute drive away and, thankfully, they were safe and sound but without power. Needless to say there will be some cleaning up to do for emergency crews over the coming days.

I'm dreading summer when we get a lot of these types of storms and they can cause a lot of damage. We have some huge trees behind our back fence that I've always been wary of during storms.....I try not to worry about it but it's hard when I know they would cause a helluva a lot of damage if they fell our way.

I hope you are all enjoying a beautiful weekend......we sure did, apart from the storm of course.

Love, light and peace

Saturday, 28 November 2009

It's that time of month again...

.....where I give my grey roots the treatment. It's one of those jobs I hate to do but have to do because I'm not quite ready to let those greys shine at this stage of my life. Actually, I'm not sure if I'll ever be ready so, for now, I'll just keep buying my INDOLA hair colour and developer.

Pen and coloured pencil in A5 sketchbook
Click on image to enlarge


Aaron made some delicious peanut butter cookies for afternoon tea...YUM!!!

I hope all of my American friends had a lovely Thanksgiving and are fully recovered from all the festitivities. Many of you are probably still feasting on the left-overs, right? While we don't celebrate Thanksgiving here in Australia, I have thoroughly enjoyed reading about all the Thanksgiving plans on everyone's blogs. Enjoy your weekend!

Love, light and peace

Friday, 27 November 2009

Crochet and the man of steel.....

My blah feeling yesterday turned into an even bigger blah feeling today so I didn't get too much done at all. I've been dealing with headaches for a few days now which I'm blaming on the heat. It's been very muggy and hot. My parents picked the worst climate to migrate to all those years ago when I was only four. Sorry to my fellow Aussies but, I just can't stand the hot, humid heat we get here in Queensland... and it's not even summer yet! Roll on winter, I say!!!

This morning, I ran a few errands, then Brad and I watched an episode or two of Smallville at lunchtime. I can no longer sit idle when watching TV so I worked on the summer vest I've been crocheting for Michelle.

It's progressing nicely but I'm a little nervous about the armholes considering I'm just winging the pattern. Wish me luck!

Love, light and peace

Thursday, 26 November 2009

I'm all set!

Pigma pen and coloured pencil in A5 sketchbook
Click on image to enlarge

Just a quickie today as I've been feeling a little on the blah side. Anywhoo, I was recently inspired by this post over on Ricë's blog so I bought myself this beautiful planner/diary for next year. I can hardly wait to start disciplining myself into using it properly. Usually, I buy the A4 size which ends up sitting on my desk gathering dust like the rest of the ornaments. By March, I barely give it a glance and then, by June, I put it away in the cupboard as a lost cause....out of sight, out of mind. That won't happen with this baby because I deliberately bought the smaller A5 size so it will fit perfectly in my bag. So, it will be pretty much with me all the time and there will be no excuses for giving up on it this time around. I've always been a Page-A-Day fan and have never settled for anything less....well, ya just never know when I might have something to say. It also has a monthly planner which has one month to one page so I can check monthly appointments etc. at a glance. I'm going to be one organised woman come next year....I hope....

Love, light and peace

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

This Is It - Michael Jackson

Today, Bradley, Aaron and I went to see This Is It, the movie showing the dress rehearsal, and behind the scenes footage, for Michael's concert before he died. We LOVED it!! Michael's talent was phenomenal and the way he interacted with the crew, dancers, and musicians was truly beautiful. I only wished we could have seen more. I admit to shedding a tear or two at the thought that he truly is gone too soon.

graphite in A5 sketchbook
Click on image to enlarge

Love, light and peace

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

From the studio

Micron Pigma pen & watercolour crayon in A5 sketchbook
Click image to enlarge

There was painting going on in the studio today but it wasn't by me. Barb, my student, came for an art class. She liked the new studio too because it provides lots of natural lighting through the window. This year has been a crazy one for both of us as, between us, we have missed so many classes due to illness, surgeries, holidays/vacation, and appointments. It felt great to be back in the saddle, so to speak, though it will only be for two more weeks before the Christmas school holidays are upon us and we take a break from classes until next year. Hopefully, 2010 will be a lot more productive for Barb and I as far as our art goes.

OH! I just realised that next year will be a no. 3 year in Numerology and 3 and 5 are my personal numbers in Numerology so.....look out!

Thank you all for the words of encouragement re. me getting back into the studio yesterday after what seemed like a very long painting drought. You are truly the best supporters a girl could have! I'm so glad that my muse has finally come home to play instead of traipsing off to God only knows where. I'm going to have to sit that girl down and give her a stern talking to.

'til tomorrow.....

Love, light and peace

Monday, 23 November 2009

MONDAY PHOTO-A-WEEK

I DID IT!!!! After at least two months of no painting, I actually picked up a paintbrush and did some painting in my new studio space today!! YAY!!! It wasn't much but I figured I needed to christen the new studio before Barb, my student, does when she comes for class tomorrow morning. As mentioned in previous posts, I'm changing colours in the lounge-room area and, as the studio now sits right alongside the lounge room, it gets the treatment too. My lounge-room colours have changed from orange, burnt red and cream to green, purple and splashes of turquoise which has been my favourite colour scheme for a while now. I'm keeping my kitchen and dining room in the chilli theme as I do like the accents of red but I'll be adding more green there too.

The canvas painting below was a very, VERY quick abstract I threw together some years back to urgently fill a blank wall space temporarily in our previous home. I'm not even sure if it could be called an abstract though an abstract artist did refer to it as such.


Funnily enough, I painted and finished it in just an afternoon and, over the past few years, have received a lot of positive comments on it. It's a pity that you can't see the texture in the squares because it's quite effective in reality. The crackled cross section has metallic gold in the cracks with a burnt umber painted over the top. Today, I changed the orange-streaked squares (you will have to use your imagination) to green-streaked squares so that it matches in better with the new colour scheme. That's what I LOVE about being an artist.....if I don't like something, I can just paint over it.


Love, light and peace

Sunday, 22 November 2009

My son is officially a fighter.....

....and I'm torn. While I'm excited and happy that Reece is enjoying this new direction...as a mother, I can't help but worry about his safety and also the safety of his opponents.

Last night, Reece had his first official MMA (mixed martial arts) fight in a Fight World Cup Tournament held at the south coast twice a year. His opponent tapped out (submitted) in the very first round and Reece brought home this huge trophy. We are all very proud of him!




However, I AM a pacifist and have never been a supporter of boxing/cage-fighting sports and now, my son is actually doing it....YIKES!!! As much as I am against these types of sports....as his mother, I feel the need to support Reece and just keep praying that all will be well.

I can sense A LOT of nervous, nail-biting moments coming up on fight nights in the future.

Love, light and peace

Saturday, 21 November 2009

Still sorting the mess and bird-sitting.....

We had another very hot day but no storms yet. I pottered around in the garage still sorting through things to keep and things to go to the dump, or recycling. I listed the wood pieces and art magazines on Freecycle and I have people coming in the morning to pick them up. I was quite happy with the fast response. YAY!

Michelle and Alex came for dinner and also brought Annabelle over for me to bird-sit while they go on a mini-vacation to the Sunshine Coast until late Wednesday. I hope the weather stays nice for them.

Here is a pic of Miss Annabelle....pretending to be a snob.
She truly has a lovely temperament though.



It was hard to get a decent shot as she was busy flitting around the cage.



Love, light and peace
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