Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Diva Challenge: Blind String and New Cabinets

I just love Laura Harm's blog. In addition to the challenge she posts every week, she posts the cutest pics of her sons and this week, the pic of Artoo in his little plaid shirt and sun glasses was too much. I could just smooch his whole face! She is blessed to have two adorable little boys.  

This week's challenge was to close your eyes and draw a 'blind string. The first one I attempted was more off the tile than on so this is my second attempt. Mostly on there....not bad. 


I decided to tangle it with new tangles I haven't used before. Some of them are new from the last Zentangle Harmony weekend update and some I had just scribbled in my sketch book. I'm horrible about their names and who created them, but I am eternally grateful to all of you creative souls who come up with such neat things!



It's a kind of different look for my tile. Less cluttered than I usually do. I was all about the decluttering this weekend!

Remember the cabinet I put together when we first moved to the condo? Well...it over-floweth!

I'd been waffling about what kind of cabinets to but to fit in that space and had narrowed it down to two.  Finally I decided to just do it!

 I got the cabinets on Thursday night and by Sunday night....ta da! It wasn't easy . There was a LOT of swearing (to the point where animals were all in their hidey-holes, just peeking out from time to time). But I did it! Fits pretty good in that alcove doesn't it?!?!

The middle one is a pantry, the one on the right has my art stuff in it and the left one has linens and kitchen appliances in it. A place for everything and everything in its place!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

New Tangle Pattern: OBAD



I came up with (what I think is) a new tangle pattern. If I've stomped on anyone's toes, please, please let me know. 

The pattern is called OBAD. I wanted to call it Soleil, but it was already taken so I looked up synonyms and found this:


That'll work.


Here is the step out.

And here are some variations. This one lends itself to a ton of variations including positioning.

I've used it here by rotating it so it makes a complete 'sun'.  

I'm working on another tile where they all go in the same direction but the grid is curvy.  Lots of fun. 

So enjoy OBAD and let me know if you were able to use it in your tangles!

Tangle On!



Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Sunday Walk in Belleville



Sunday morning found me breakfasting with brothers-from-other-mothers, Scott and Michael. We were kind of bummed because the weather was a little crappy and we had wanted to go on a trip to Baraboo.  We settled for a walk around the park in Belleville. I can't get enough of that place. It really soothes my soul. You know me and water!

Such a beautiful little park. And usually not crowded at all, even when it's hot. 
The water was quite high.  It usually doesn't flow over this part of the dam.

Or these rocks. It makes such a soothing sound. 


Scott is always on the lookout for photo ops with their beautiful dog, Duchess. Sometime there are bugs in the posing process that need to be worked out.

One out of two facing in the right direction isn't bad.

Almost there!

Ta Da!  Gorgeous! Working it for the camera!

I am so blessed to have such peaceful places to get centered again and such  a wonderful Wisconsin family of friends in addition to my Maine family. Such undeserved riches!



Monday, September 22, 2014

♫ ♫ ♫ In The Jungle the Mighty Jungle ♫ ♫ ♫


♫ The Lion Sleeps Tonight...♫


Went to a Big Cat sanctuary north of Madison on Saturday with friends Hope and Matthew. I hate that there has to be sanctuaries at all, but if I was a tiger and I needed to be in one, this is the one I'd choose.  There were spacious, clean enclosures with lots of things to enhance the animals lives, like giant cement culverts for the cats to lay on and hide in. Each had shelter from the sun and bad weather if they chose to use it. All had toys of some sort to play with and plenty of fresh water. 


Unless they were bonded pairs, each tiger had his own space. Male and females that were bunking together were spayed and neutered. 


All of the cats were so beautiful,healthy and content looking, well fed and had great coats. 
 You could tell they were well cared for and as happy as you can be in a sanctuary.

There were Bengals, Siberians, Lions, Cheetahs and Panthers. Many of them were rescued from a place in Indiana that had 20 cats in way to small a space. Others came from circuses and zoos that no longer had room for them .


 You could buy frozen supermarket chickens to feed them but we declined on the basis that I just about passed out from the mere though when she asked us. 

We enjoyed it so much and  were so impressed with the good work that they are doing at the sanctuary, we sacrificed this wee boy to the last tiger on the visit. He was crunchy and tasty with ketchup.

If you love cats and would like to support this sanctuary, you can read more about it here: http://www.wisconsinbigcats.org/.

________________________________________________________________________
Funny story: When we checked in, Hope and Matthew paid their admission and then the lady said to me. "55+?'.  What a dilemma!!!! The 48 year old angel on my left shoulder was screaming, 'NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!' but the frugal Yankee devil on my fight shoulder was chanting' 'Get the discount! Get the discount!'. Vanity won out and I paid the regular price. I'm going to be heck on wheels when I earn my AARP card though! I'm never paying full price again after that!!!!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Siblings!


One of the surprises that this summer  held for me is the discovery that I have birth siblings back in Maine. It was by happenstance that we found each other. Youngest sister, Shelly, passed away this spring and I saw the obituary that had my name of the woman on my birth certificate on it. (My own MUM was the one that discovered it and called me to take a look. She is just SMOTHERED in awesome sauce, that one!) I contacted Shelly's best friend via FB as she had posted a lovely tribute to Shell. I told her who I was and that I was sorry I never got to meet Shelly. She informed me that I had more brothers and sisters in the area!  


I contacted them all by Facebook and arranged to meet them when I was back in Maine this summer. It was an amazing experience! We met at a restaurant and spent the afternoon looking at family photos and getting to know each other a little. Doris, Dan and Dina have welcomed me (and my Mum) with open arms and are the sweetest folks. It was a bit overwhelming at first since I grew  up in such a small family, just my brother and I, but it's all kinds of wonderful as well. Someone asked me yesterday how many brothers and sisters I had and I said 'three sisters and two brothers' for the first time!

I feel like sister, Shelly, gave me such a gift. I like to think she had a lot to do with us finding our way back together. Life is a funny old thing....


Weekly Challenge #185: DuoTangle - Phicops vs DivaDance

I haven't participated in the Diva Challenges for the past few weeks and I've been extremely negligent in my blog postings. I have no excuse except for....well....LIFE!  So now that autumn is upon us and winter is around the corner, I need to rededicate myself to sitting down and keeping everything updated. 

First order of business is the Diva Challenge for this week: Use only two tangle patterns-Phicops and Diva Dance.I hadn't used either of them before. I really like Phicops alot. Reminds me of a seashell. I'll be using that one more I think! Thanks for the great challenge, Diva!


I joined a Facebook group called 'Random Acts of Zentangle'. You leave little Zentangles in public places for others to find. On the back of my tiles it says " Congratulations! You've discovered a Random Act Of Zentangle. If you've found this tiny piece of art, it was meant for you. Enjoy! Please remember to pass along a smile!'

I started by doing actual Zentangle Tiles...

(These next three were done in meetings  and I didn't have a pencil so no shading!)



Then I ran out of tiles so  I experimented on a little larger size which was too labor intensive.

 Then I settled on doing them all on Artist Trading Cards. They are 2 1/2 x 3 1/2 inch pieces of nice card stock. I carry them around with me and doodle in meetings, waiting rooms, or wherever I am that I have a minute to spare.


I am having so much fun hiding them in plain sight in the places I visit during my day. I haven't hidden any at work because everyone would know it was me, but I've left them in restaurants, doctor's offices, the library, and stores around town. I love to imagine who will find them. I hope they make people smile. Too. much. fun!  

So far it's been anonymous, but I've been reading where folks are putting their email address on the back in case people want to contact them about it. I'm thinking about setting up a gmail acount just for this. Could be interesting. 

Anyway, I hope you all had a super summer and I promise to be more diligent in my blog posting from now on. I may even do a couple of catch up posts since it has been a very eventful summer!


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Diva Challenge-Stripes and Memories of Maine

This week's Diva Challenge was to use stripes as a string. I can't think of anything more 'stripey' than Hollybaugh so I used that as my 'template'. Fun! Thanks Laura for another great challenge!

I just got back from a couple of weeks in Maine and am having a hard time adjusting to 'real life' back here in Wisconsin. I love spending time with my Mum so much that it's always a week or two of the 'I-Miss-My-Mommy' blues when I get home. And this time around I have more to miss! I connected with my birth siblings this spring. I have four new sisters and a new brother! I got to meet up with two sisters, Doris and Dina and a brother, Dan, for lunch while I was home. They are all warm, funny, smart, caring folks and I'm so glad that fate (or as I like to call her, Shelly) brought us together. 

As an adopted kid, I didn't look or act like anyone in my family. It was kind of mind blowing to see baby pics of all of us and see that I look just like them! And we all have the same weird sense of humor, and we all love art. Doris does lovely pen and ink drawings, and Dan and Dina paint beautifully. It was an overwhelming, surreal, but awesome experience. I may have come to the game late, but they are stuck with me now! I also got to meet two nieces, Amy and Rebekka who are just as sweet and welcoming as their respective moms!

My Aunt and Uncle from California, and their children and spouses were all at the camp on Lake Mattawamkeag. I haven't seen my cousin, Mike, in years. It was a bittersweet reunion as they were all home to say goodbye to the camp. My Aunt and Uncle are selling it and closing that chapter on all of our lives. How lucky are we to have someplace that we'll miss so much? Millions of memories.

Mum and I got up to our usual trouble and then some. We  kayaked a bit. We went to the coast one day. Walked the Rockland Breakwater and Lincolnville Beach. We went to Shin Pond because I couldn't remember ever being there before. What a beautiful drive!  It's at the north end of Baxter State Park. There are cabins there and a little store right on the pond. Absolutely gorgeous!

We spent some time porch sittin', visiting with friends and playing Rummakub. I don't so much 'play' as it turns out, as let Mum monkeystomp me over and over! We don't have to do anything special. I love just spending quiet time with Mum. Although she will tell you, with me around, it's rarely quiet! I think she needed a full week's detox after I left!

So now it's time to settle get back in the swing of the Midwest. Lots of big plans for this autumn to look forward to! Onward and upward!

Monday, August 04, 2014

A Garden for Bijou

I LOVE this week's Diva Challenge! The good folks over at Zentangle have rolled out an adorable new mascot and new mini tiles that are the cutest things ever!

This is Bijou.
(Picture shamelessly stolen from the Zentangle website.)

His new Zentangle tiles have his picture on the back and inspirational sayings and are only 2" by 2"! Room enough for exquisite, teeny tangles only! You can read all about Bijou and his tiles here.   I have A LOT going on this week and  didn't think that I would have time to do the challenge but since it was to create a tangle in a 2"x 2" space, I couldn't resist. I love little Bijou so much that I made him a garden to rest in! 

I hope he likes it as much as I like him!  Thanks for the great challenge, Diva! Adieu for now Bijou!