Thoughtful Thursday Hope

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Hurricanes are not to be taken lightly. They can cause loss of property and life. The state of Florida was hit by Hurricane Ian on 9/30/22, and it caused mass destruction across the state. Now Hurricane Nicole has caused even more. Nicole missed us thank goodness but the east coast of Florida, north of us was battered by winds, flooding and King Tides. King Tides are the highest possible tides in a calendar year and that only compounded the already serious issues caused by the hurricane.

I’ve been watching the news and am horrified to see homes in Daytona that are literally crumbling and being washed out to sea. The devastation is terrible and breaks your heart. One resident, a widow had lived in her home for over 30 years and thought she was in her forever home. But sadly her home is now uninhabitable.

I wish I had something happy to share with you today but I’m at a loss of words I guess. I can’t imagine how these people must feel at this time. My thoughts and prayers to go out to all affected by these storms.

Thanks for stopping by!!

Share the Happy because many need it now more than ever πŸ’–

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old but on building the new.” ~Socrates

Thoughtful Thursday Jack-O-Lanterns

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I always wonder how things got started and who started them. With Halloween approaching in just a few days I thought it would be fun to learn about jack-o-lanterns.

The term jack-o-lantern started in Britain in the 17th century. At the time it was common for the British to call a person Jack when they didn’t know his name. So now we know where the “Jack” part of the term came from but what about the o-latern?

The o-lantern term was also commonly used in the 17th century to refer to a man carrying a lantern or a night watchman. And since they may not have known his name the term jack-o-lantern was born. But how did we go from the term jack-o-lantern to carving a pumpkin for Halloween?

Well there are quite a few theories on that. One is it was a Celtic pagan practice to carve out turnips or some other type of root vegetable and then illuminate it to ward off evil spirits. The custom was then carried on by Christians during the feast of All Hallows Eve.

Another more creepy theory is centered around an Irish folklore. There are several versions of this folklore but they all have certain common elements like a man named Jack, the devil and an illuminated turnip with which Jack’s soul aimlessly wanders the earth.

But here in the states during the 19th century, young kids who liked pranks would carve a grotesque face out of a readily available pumpkin to scare unwary people. Eventually this prank became known as jack-o-lantern. Today this has became a widely used and artistic tradition by many for Halloween.

Which is your favorite theory?

Hope you enjoyed this little history snippet. Thanks for stopping by!!!

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I am… Mini Mixed Media Art Journal

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I finally finished my handmade 3″ x 4.5″ mini watercolor, mixed media art journal. I filled it with uplifting and powerful “I am…” quotes so I affectionately titled this journal, “I am…”

My favorite pages are the Frida Kahlo quote “I am my own muse…” I love the bright colors 😊 What are your favorites?

I hope you enjoying your weekend, thanks for stopping by!!

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Candy Corn Witch Hat

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When I was a kid, candy corns were one of my favorite Halloween treats. They made awesome vampire fangs πŸ˜‚ So it’s no wonder I used them to make a witch’s hat.

For this project I recommend getting clay candy corns. You can use real ones and coat them in Mod Podge, but they won’t last whereas the clay ones will. If you want to get even more creative you could make them yourself 😊

This is a fun and easy Halloween Decoration to make for your home and is great for kids too.

For this Project you will need:

  • Large Paper Mache Witch Hat (about 12 inches tall)
  • Acrylic Paints: Folk Art School Bus Yellow and Black
  • Clay Candy Corns
  • 18″ white netting
  • Black Pom-poms: 1 large and 1 small
  • 2 small wiggle eyes
  • 2 Yellow/Orange Chenille Stems Pipe Cleaners 
  • Letter Rubber Stamps
  • Staz On Stone Gray Ink
  • Small Orange Boa, 18-24 inches long depending on your hat
  • Sponge brushes (makes painting big sections faster)
  • Aleene’s Tacky Glue
  • Glue Gun
  • Scissors
  • Wire cutters
  • 1/2″ flat brush
  • Clean water, paper towels, wax-coated paper plates for paint palette
  • Mod Podge: Matte for sealing (optional)

Instructions

  1. Basecoat the top of your witch hat in black paint using the 1/2β€³ brush. Apply 2-3 coats and let dry in between coats.
  2. Basecoat the bottom and inside of the hat with 1 coat of the black paint using the 1/2β€³ brush. Let dry.
  3. Basecoat the rim of the hat, on top in yellow paint using the 1/2β€³ brush. Apply 2-3 coats and let dry in between coats.
  4. Using the glue gun, randomly glue candy corns around the top of the hat.
  5. Stamp you letters around onto the rim of the hat. If you’re not going to seal your hat with Mod Podge go to Step 8.
  6. (Optional) Using your sponge brush apply a coat of Matte Mod Podge to the entire hat to seal it. Let dry. Once dry you can apply a second coat of Mod Podge if you so desire.
  7. (Optional) Apply 1 coat of Mod Podge to the bottom and inside of the hat. Let dry      
  8. For the spider, glue the small pom-pom to the large pom-pom using tacky glue.
  9. Using wire cutters, cut five 2β€³ pieces of the yellow/orange pipe stem. Bundle 4 of the pieces and twist the 5th piece around the center of the bundle to hold in place. Spread out the pieces and shape your spider legs. Cut off any excess.
  10. Glue your spider body to the legs with tacky glue. Next glue the wiggle eyes to the front of the small pom-pom. Let dry.
  11. Apply a generous amount of tacky glue to the inner seam of the hat where it meets the rim. Wrap your boa around the hat and cut off any excess. Let dry.
  12. Cut a 12″ piece of netting and tie the center into a knot. Apply tacky glue to the tip of the hat and place the center of the knot over the hat. Let dry.
  13. Gently insert the spider fee into the netting holes and you’re done!

Hope you enjoy making this fun Candy Corn Witch HatπŸŽƒ Thanks for stopping by!!

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Candy Corn Witch Hat

Poppies Mixed Media Art

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I thought I’d share with you today one of my older pieces of art I created a while ago from a tutorial in Zendoodle Magazine which sadly isn’t published anymore. It was a beautiful publication with eye catching designs and tutorials I really enjoyed.

This mixed media art was made using collaged tissue paper which is a medium that’s such fun to use. To this day this is still one of my favorite pieces of art for many reasons. I love the bright colors, texture, doodles and overall design. What do you think?

Thanks for stopping by!!

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“Flowers are like friends, they bring color to your world.” ~Gerard De Nerval

Inchie Challenge – Part 3

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Almost done with my studio, thank goodness. This is the end of the Inchie Challenge. It was quite fun creating these little 2×2″ pieces of art. I’m sad it came to an end but I plan on continuing the practice.

I hope you enjoyed coming along on this journey with me. Have a wonderful weekend and thanks for stopping by!!

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These are all of my creations:

Destination Key West

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I recently had the pleasure of visiting Key West, Florida the southernmost point in the continental USA and also the westernmost island connected by highway in the Florida Keys. There are more than 800 Florida Keys stretching over 180 miles but only 43 of them are inhabited. The island of Key West is fairly small running 4 miles long and about 1 mile wide.

In 1912 Henry Flagler built his railroad down into Key West connecting it to the mainland. Sadly on September 3rd 1935, Key West was hit by one of the most powerful hurricanes to date, “the Labor Day Storm” and it washed the railroad away which cost Flagler $20 million dollars to build. The railroad was never rebuilt but instead was replaced with a highway.

The scenic drive into Key West on the 110 mile Overseas Highway is simply spectacular! On your drive you’ll enjoy the natural coastal beauty as you cross a total of 42 bridges including the infamous 7 mile bridge which is my favorite. There are plenty of great restaurants, shops and art boutiques to stop at along the way.

There are a lot of interesting sites to visit in Key West including the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum, a must see, showcasing artifacts and treasures from the Atocha. President Truman’s Little White House with guided tours and lots of US history. The legendary novelist, Ernest Hemingway resided in Key West and did a lot of his writing in his home which is now open for tours and home to about 60 cats. But keep in mind these are just a few of the fun places to visit while in Key West, there are plenty more.

I’ve saved the best for last as the sunsets in Key West are simply breathtaking. If you do nothing else but take a sunset cruise you won’t be disappointed. You’ll be in awe as you enjoy Mother Nature at her finest while cruising the ocean, there’s nothing quite like it!

I hope you enjoyed this little travel review and are able to visit the Florida Keys some day. Thanks for stopping by!!!

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“Every sunset is an opportunity to reset.” ~Richie Norton

All photos taken by Maria Vidaurre

Believe in you Journal Pages

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Sometimes I like to create small pieces of art like these tags. I normally don’t have an immediate need for them, but I enjoy the creation process. I end up putting these small artsy pieces in a box for later use. The fun happens when I go my stash box and pick out pieces to create journal pages like these.

You end up working backwards starting with the colors in your ephemera and then picking a background color that complements it. This is a fun way to create journal pages even if you’re short on time.

Hope these pages inspire you in some way today. Thanks for stopping by!!!

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Thoughtful Thursday Mission Organization

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Imagine going to the library and the books are randomly placed on the shelves. You’d get frustrated because you can’t find what you’re looking for. If you were the person in charge of getting new books for the library you wouldn’t know which books to add because you don’t know what’s already there.

We all have a tendency of acquiring “stuff” that seems to pile up and multiply all on it’s own if we don’t tend to it. Maybe we’re just not an organizer by nature or we’ll get to it later but then later never comes. All this “stuff” stops the flow of energy causing you to become unhappy, stressed and lose clarity to name a few.

I’m getting ready to do the floors in my studio. It’s something I’ve been putting off but needs to get done. I’m not looking forward to packing everything up because I have a lot of art supplies I use. On the other hand this is going to force me to really look at what I have and ask “do I really need this, does it bring me happiness.”

I wanted to get some new ideas and a fresh outlook to organizing my studio so I purchased a book by Desha Peacock, “Your Creative Work Space” which is available on Amazon.

I started reading the book and love it so far. Desha shares examples of creative work spaces from different people in different professions. She also shares her wisdom for organizing your sacred space and keeping that way. I’m already very excited to put some of her ideas to use and create better energy flow in my studio.

I’m not sure how this is going to work out but I’ll do my best to keep posting and sharing the happy with everyone. Wish me luck πŸ˜…

Thanks for stopping by!!

Share the Happy πŸ’–

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Nebula Art Journaling

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I’m having fun playing with my watercolors and trying new things like this nebula which I painted in my 5.5″ x 8″ Strathmore Watercolor Journal. The picture below was the start of my inspiration but then there were quite a few photos I liked and I had a hard time choosing just one. So I ended up combining different things from each one and putting it into this painting.

Although it didn’t go as planned I really like this color combination and it was lots of fun creating it. But I think I have a bit more experimenting to do. What I love about painting is it’s very fulfilling. When you finish a painting it gives you a sense of accomplishment and that’s wonderful feeling!

What do you like to do that gives you a feeling of accomplishment?

I hope you’re enjoying your 4th of July weekend! Thanks for stopping by!!!

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“The darkest nights produce the brightest stars.” ~Unknown