Saturday, February 15, 2014

Five on Friday

Here's the Goodreads list of  100 Books to Read in a Lifetime     Do you agree? Disagree? What would you add or delete?  I've never seen a top 10 or top 100 list that I completely agreed with, and this one is no exception. I've read most of the books on here, but some books that I consider classics didn't make the cut.  What do you think?

Besides reading them, I love to alter books. Some devoted book lovers can't bring themselves to tear a book apart and remake it -- but I consider it a tribute to the form rather than the function.  I belong to two different altered book groups with art friends who mostly live in Hawaii.

This first set of pages is for someone whose theme was Mind Games, and my work is done with pan pastels in response to a class with Jane Davenport.

The second set of pages is for a theme called "The Meaning of Art, and I included a quote about art along with watercolor sketches of some supplies. I used the lettering techniques I learned with Lori Vliegen of Elvie Studio  -- I was fortunate to be able to take an in-person class with Lori as well as her wonderful online class.

And more artwork - I did some illustrations for my daughter, who will be getting a tattoo on her leg. She gave me specifics on the sugar skull she wanted, based on a design I did last year, and the illustrated "S" will hug her calf.  To be clear, I'm not a fan of tattoos, but I guess I'd rather she have my artwork on her leg than someone else's.

Still trying to get in all the Oscar candidates I can view before the awards. This weekend we saw Frozen and Philomena.  Both award worthy, for sure. Want to fill out a ballot for yourself so you can keep track of your picks while watching the show?  Here's the NY Times ballot form: NY Times Oscars Ballot

Are you watching the Olympics? I mostly like the skating, and felt so sad for Evgeni Plushenko. He had an incredible performance on his first night, but hurt his back and had to step out of the second night of competition. And I will admit that last Sunday night I skipped the Olympics for the Beatles tribute show on CBS ... and loved every minute.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Five on Friday

What ever happened to the great shows we used to find on HGTV and DIY networks?  In a time when housing is at its lowest level in 40 years, how is it that so many of the shows are about buying homes? Is there a realtor lobby at work in the programming departments? I miss those great design shows that gave us so many ideas for decorating and home improvement.

Today is the twins' half birthday. The little four-pounders are now little bruisers -- and as you can see here, they're already asserting themselves.

What a couple of characters.

My Blissfully Art Journaling group is doing a domino book swap and I had fun making one. I've seen altered dominoes but never did one myself before this. The theme was Valentine's Day, and since I love the romance of Jane Austen I went with images from Sense and Sensibility to decorate this little book.  I liked it so much that I'm making a few more for myself. Here are a couple of views.


And finally, if you haven't had enough cuteness
with the babies, above, we have adopted a new
kitty. We've been miserable with the loss of our
two cats, Roan and Kris, within three months of
each other, and though no one can ever replace
them, we had a huge hole in our hearts. Dewey
is thrilled to have a fur baby to keep him company. Meet Cody.

Enjoy the Olympics this week. I'm sure we're all holding our breath and hoping all goes well.
Thanks for visiting! 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Is it February already? Wait. Is it June yet?

It's snowing again in New York City.  In the ten years I've lived here, I've never seen so much snow, and honestly, I'm ready for a change.  And we still have all of February and March. I'm looking forward to my yearly art retreat in Key Largo even more this year than ever.

Do you ever get to that time between books where you just can't warm up to anything? I get the preview/sample on Amazon for my iPad and start reading, but can't warm up to it. Then I try another. And another. I feel like those people who go to dating services and can't settle on one person because there are so many to choose from.  Any suggestions for a book you read and really enjoyed?

I've been doing a reflective journaling class on the Oprah Network with Brene Brown, called The Gifts of Imperfection. It's a pairing with Brene's book on this topic. The subtitle is: Let go of who you  think you're supposed to be and embrace who you are.  My pages from the first three weeks are below.

The first part was just giving ourselves permission to be imperfect.

And this one is permission slips on that same theme. Inside that heart is a paper with the names of people I can trust with my thoughts and feelings. I'm blessed with many. Some people in the class had none, and for that, I feel true sympathy.

Reflecting on my younger self and what I like about her.

Looking back in time with words of advice to my younger self.  "Whispers" The photo at left was taken just at the time of my divorce. The photo at right was just after I got married the first time, age 23.

This class is less about the "art" than about the reflections and the journaling. It's kind of freeing, really. And fun that I'm doing it together with a friend, because we're having some great talks about each week's topic.

If you looked back at yourself from an important moment in your past, what advice would you give?