Monday, December 20, 2010

Here is something I wrote this morning on a scrap piece of paper while I waited for Toot to have her fill of fun at the McDonald's play gym.

It's another rainy day. Toot and I are at the McDonald's in La Canada for breakfast. What a pleasant surprise to find out that they have an "indoor" play gym. I decided to give her a break from being indoors all day yesterday because of rain and my baking cookies. She was in the zone- Kids! Kids! Kids! I'm sure all these kids are happy to get out of the house and have some good fun. She made friends so quicky. I admire and encourage her to be sociable. I on the other hand am far from being the social butterfly. I am taking steps to change for the better because of her and because I know life is a better place when one changes their attitude to be happy. We've been here an hour and it's time to go back home and continue with my Christmas cookie baking.

It's now 12:05 am.
I finally finished all my baking. Tomorrow we'll have a great time delivering our Christmas cookies to family and friends.

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Last Drink

It's 4:30 am and I can't sleep anymore for this morning. This past week I've been plodding along with my homemade/handmade Christmas cards and I finally finished twenty=nine of them last night. Now the next step is to sign them and address them. Small originals is what my close family and friends will get. I hope I don't forget anyone.

All is good here at home. I'm taking it pretty slow and simple. The house is still a slight mess and that's okay for me and my wee family. Not to many presents to give out this Christmas and that's okay for me and my wee family too. Every year it gets easier to not feel the pressure to fall into the buying frenzy. I will bake cookies and be dropping them off to family and friends later this week.

My twenty-nine Christmas cards have been my creative outlet for the past week. I've been busy with my Toot's classes and researching Homeschooling that I haven't had anytime to paint. That creative surge is starting to rumble in my head and heart. I will be making something with my paints and paintbrush very soon.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Is that all there is?

I've just finished putting my mother-in-law to bed.
One hour went by in the restroom.
I apologize to her because I have to clean her.
Is this something she does not remember a few minutes later- I think.
She thanks me. I'm sorry and at the same time I'm humbled.

I say to myself...I can do this...I can do this...I can do this.

A list:
The smell of stagnant water
Liquid Soap
Night Time Depends
Layers of clothes
Raining outside
My Cave
A bottle of boooooooze sounds goooooooooooooood about now.
AA cake
My commitment..
4th step
5th step
Everyone is asleep and I am not ready to turn out the lights.
Not yet.
Smell gone away.
A second list:

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Middle Aged Me and Mini Me

"Middle Aged Me"

Halloween is done and gone! Hoooray!!

"Mini Me"
at Hollywood Forever Cemetery.
Another fun time at this event. Move over Halloween because I want to make Dia de Los Muertos my favorite day of honoring.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Finally a finished piece

" Five O'clock Shadow "

Yes, I know it's a bit gay and I love it!
I think she looks a bit like me..if I were a man.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Getting Ready to Spook!

Here we are in October! These are some photos of my girl just before we got sick with a cold for two weeks. We were shopping at Big Lots and she wanted this mask so badly. She knew what she wanted to do with it and couldn't wait to get home to start her mask. She's lucky that I've got different paints for different canvases or projects. We used Acrylic on this and it worked perfectly.

Having fun with Toot. The summer came and went so quickly and we were busy with an awkward schedule that we didn't have much time to just have fun and paint. She's doing so well with her ideas and making them come to life. I love the energy and when Daddy's at work I let her make her messes and we clean it all up when he's getting close to coming home.
She reminds me of a character in the movie The Warriors.

photo: Google Images

So our cold keeps coming back. I was finally feeling better today and she woke up coughing. It's been tough and I think Daddy's caught it today too. I hope I don't get it again because it hit me hard this time and my head felt like a watermelon. I couldn't do anything for a whole week. I've got sores in my nose from all the nose blowing. Too much information? Lucky I didn't post photos.

I am posting here that I've decided to write a children's book myself. That's it. I've said it and now I'm going to have to do it.
I've renewed my membership to
so I can stay in touch with my goals. Small steps is all it takes. That's just right for me.

I am reading this:

Photo: Amazon images

and I'm enjoying it very much. I am dreading the day when my girl has to go the public school. I'm afraid of the bad habits she will pick up and the attitudes she'll be facing. It's a scary thought. So, I try to learn from these books and apply as much as I can while I have her. Hopefully!!! I am building a strong foundation for her and she will not lose her drive for learning.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

"Apple Lotion"

My girl and I have started our class. I suppose you can call it a preschool, but I'm still with her the whole time. We go two days a week and that's plenty. There are a lot of free preschools opening up this fall, but I'm not interested in having my Toot in school five days a week. I am in no hurry to send her into the public schools. Financially we are managing just fine and I don't feel I'm missing out on any of the new phones and pads coming out every few months. As you can see I'm perfectly satisfied with my sketchbook and new markers.


I am no longer caring for my mother-in-law. Sista has come up with new
arrangements and has raised the rent another hundred dollars. We can manage and we are ready for more unexpected changes. I can handle change well, now.
I focus on NOW.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Hiding Comments for Awhile

Photo: Our summer field trip to the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach.

I've decided to omit the option for my readers to post comments. Not because I've been getting undesirable comments or spam, but because we are going through some changes here at home and I need to get through this with some sense of empowerment. Is that right? Is it okay for me to want to have a feeling of control when I know that everything I ever plan doesn't comes out the way I hoped it would. Most times the outcome is good and I've FINALLY learned to see the good in just about everything that's been happening in my life...once a major hurdle for me.

So here's the change: We may be moving out of our home and back into an apartment within a year. At the present time I am taking care of my mother-in-law 2 to 3 days a week. I won't get into the details of all I have to do for her, but she basically needs everything done for her and I am the one who is doing it for her. This is her home and she needs 24/7 care and I can't do it. It would be
impossible for me to take Toot to her classes two days a week. We pay rent, but we are living on the edge with an unpredictable relative ( Let's call her "Sista") who has been unreasonable with our schedule and the care my mother-in-law's needs. Sista has been making changes to the house and we've been cooperative with her schedule of people she's been sending to make these changes. Now September is coming and she's starting to dig her heals into the ground with the schedule we will need to go by so my girl can take her classes. Tomorrow we (might) find out what her problem is with the schedule. We had given her a schedule back in July and she's now telling us that it's not going to workout...a week before classes start. I don't know what to expect, but having to move out just may be our only option.

Enough of that. I have obviously been busy and I have not been able to paint. This has been a real disappointment which I have not been able to turn into a positive. Stop! That's not true because I have been sketching a lot and this has been a relief from the caregiving. I've got sketchbooks everywhere: My backpack, my car, dining room table, and my bedroom. Just so I can sketch for a few minutes. Here's an outline drawing I did of my Toot while we had an afternoon snack.

I just want to say that we did have a great summer filled with many new places and new friends. I'm sad that it has come to an end. We will have many wonderful memories of our summer here in Grandma's house.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Our First Harvest - Onions

I've always wanted to have a farm. I think most kids like the idea of farming. As you can see, my girl is basking in our first harvest of onions. At first I wasn't sure if I was doing it right, but I kept an eye on them and we watered pretty regular and here we are. It sure feels fantastic knowing that I can grow some edibles.

One of these had a flower growing from the end. Toot put the flower in a vase with water and it's on our dining room table now. Fresh smell of onion while we have our breakfast, lunch, and dinner. That's right, the flower smells like onion. You can kind of get see the flower on the first picture. It's bent forward and touching the ground, white flowers.
They need to air dry for a couple of days. I'll also be cutting off the stems and roots in a few days and letting them dry some more.
The Gorilla was even impressed with our gardening. He said, "You ARE a hippie!".

Monday, May 24, 2010

Chasing the sun for good light

It always feels good to get several hours for painting. I've been working on this piece for several months now. Lately I've been lucky to get a Saturday or Sunday to paint for a few hours. Come this summer I will have more time to paint. It's probably difficult to make out, but it is a landscape. Landscapes have been on my mind a lot and it's been easy for me to express these visions in my latest paintings. I need to get out in open spaces. My girl has been noticing how much I enjoy painting. On this day she gathered her art supplies and started to draw on her table beside me. She's learning to spend more time on her drawings. Her details amaze and inspire me. Love!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Her Favorite color is Green

Her favorite color is Green!
*image from Google Images

It's been two months since I've posted here on my blog. I'm glad to say that things have settled a bit and I can concentrate on projects that I've postponed because of lack of time and money. I had to do a lot of thinking about my situation and not get sidetracked into a different direction because I was isolating.

Back to my goal: Simple living, recycle and reuse anything that can be fixed or given to someone who can use.

I did go through a month when I felt a strong urge to become friends with a mother in one of our Mommy & Me classes. She and I went out to dinner in the city at a popular somewhat upscale restaurant. To tell the truth - I wouldn't be able to say what upscale is. All I know is that I felt uncomfortable. I had no dressy clothes for the kind of restaurant it was and it turned out to be a bit more expensive than I had expected. The parking was $7 and I'm not used to paying for parking to eat out at a restaurant. The food was good, but the conversation was one sided. It was difficult to make my food last an hour and a half when I was doing the listening. My new friend had made it clear that she enjoyed fine dining and pampering herself by spending money. I knew I could not keep up with her tastes or entertainments. When I got home I felt like a pup with my tail between my legs. What did I expect? Why couldn't I find like minded friends? A week later, after my bruises had slowly disappeared, it became clear that I had strayed from my goals.

So the fog has cleared and I am back on track. I am growing some yellow onions outback. I've gone to St. Vincent's to purchase three new "used" t-shirts - $4 for all three, and I wear them proudly. I've decided to continue with the Homeschooling and a couple of Mommy and Me classes for another year for my Toot. I am still painting, but it's coming along slowly.
I have also met an amazing woman who has taken me under her wing to guide me into a healthier body. We've already met and we walked for an hour yesterday. While we walked she gave me tips on healthy eating. I was amazed to see her lunch bag filled with one ingredient foods. Six meals a day and all small portions. Wow!! Her favorite color is Green and for fun she plays her guitar at home and would like to be a Hippie full-time!

Here are some photos of a project the Toot and I worked on in April, but never found time to post.

Caterpillar to Butterfly

The caterpillar came in this container with food already packed at the bottom. You can't see the caterpillar, but when we got the little creature it was about 3/8".

I was amazed how quickly it grew in 7-10 days. Here it was about 3/4" and plump.

Making a background for the caterpillar's new home, a box.

The Toot's drawing of the caterpillar inside he chrysalis. We got so busy with the construction of the box that I forgot to take a photo of the chrysalis stage.

Out and all grown up with its new wings!

Getting ready to release in our backyard.

Luxurious butterfly home - vacancy!
At Kidspace they were selling netted butterfly containers about this size for twenty dollars. We didn't spend a cent to make this homemade one.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Nice Home for Worms

We've been in this house a little over a year now and we've recently been getting a taste of how expensive it is to keep up with repairs on a home, especially since it is an old house. I've been trying my best to stay optimistic and hopeful, but it does get difficult during these cold rainy days. I still love the rain, but I don't like the mold we've discovered on the north side of the house because of it. I know it's not good for us and I've been dealing with it as best I could with the information I can get off of the internet. We also have very old old old plumbing and we recently had our plumber fix a leak which made our water bill go way up for the past two payments. I've been buying water filters every two months because the water is also full of rust. The furnace is also old and we recently had some work done because we were breathing carbon monoxide. Smaller items needed to be replaced like our phone and yesterday we had to spend $100 dollars on a new modem for the computer. And to add to our major expenses - one of our cars has been consistent with unexpected car repairs. All I can say is, "We're doing the best we can with what we've got".
And our got is getting pretty slim.

My other self is thinking:

I'm ready to build my canoe and drift away from all these expenses - of course with my papoose in tow.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Buzz Light Year - Cardboard and Thick Gray Tape

Head hung low. My knuckles are dragging because I haven't had time to paint, but I did make this last night. This is our latest creation out of cardboard. A Buzz Light Year space suit for my gal. This is all her design and I fabricated it. Tomorrow (if I have time) I will paint. She's thrilled with her space suit and I'm looking forward to see what details she'll add to it. You can't see the empty vitamin bottle that is strapped with tape to her back. Again, this was her idea. The vitamin bottle is her rocket launcher so she can fly in space. This pose was her idea and she had many more. She's got style!

We've been busy with classes and learning. The learning never ends and I'm enjoying every day I get to share with her. So my painting will have to wait for a short time.

Monday, January 18, 2010


It's late and my Toot is sleeping on the couch while I finish putting up this piece. Something quick that I promised myself to do in a couple of hours and put up tonight. This is what happens when I don't have any time during the day to paint. Made this on the computer in Painter. A bit rough, but I wanted to get a basic composition and have fun with it. It was raining when I started and now as I'm putting it up on my blog the rain has stopped. I'd like to make this into a painting or a drawing.

I spent Sunday organizing my desk and paint supplies. The next few days we will be going through several storms and it'll be a perfect opportunity for me to make some quick pieces. If the Toot lets me. Lately, she's been wanting to takeover whatever I start and then I have a hard time finishing. How am I'm going to go about this? Quick pieces is my latest idea. Or...more of these late night computer pieces. 2:30 am and I'm going to pay for it when I have to wake up on her schedule.

I don't think I've mentioned this on my blog or anywhere else, but I've joined The Society of Children's Bookwriters and Illustrators! I've been a member for several months now, and I've put up some of my drawings and paintings. Not much activity there (on my part) lately, but I am glad I finally joined. It's something I've been wanting to do for myself to keep me focused. Take a look at my gallery. I know I've got a long way to go to get my portfolio up to par with the professional children's book illustrators, but I've taken a step forward and that's good for now.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

These Curtains were not made in China

These are the second set of curtains that I made last Saturday, but I didn't have time to put up until today.

I had to recharge the battery to my drill and then I got busy with other home stuff before I found time to hang these blue lovelies. I'm pleased with the cheerful pattern and color.
It's nice how they've changed the mood in the kitchen. These are the third set of curtains I've made in my lifetime. All three sets were made with my mother's old sewing machine. I am improving and again I am grateful that my mother taught me how to use her sewing machine. It sure is so much nicer to make my own curtains. Pre-made, store bought curtains are so impersonal. It also costs me a lot less to buy three yards of material and make them myself. I get to choose a pattern and color that are to my liking. And now with my experience on my mother's sewing machine, I can now get a little fancier with the pattern. This time I made these two sets in one day. Not bad at all. It feels great to complete another project.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Happy New Year! oooops! A little late...

in the post and it's still okay. It's all good.
I'm enjoying a nice warm cup of coffee this morning. The Monstritos are asleep and I like the quiet. I got to hear the neighborhood rooster while I admired the kitchen curtains I made yesterday. I will post photos later today (..Here's my photo). For now, I just want to post something to keep my blog from feeling abandoned. I've got my brand new schedule book and it's been filled with activities, projects and thoughts. I decided to get back to a schedule book that I can write on and look at without having to turn on the computer. Getting on the computer to check my emails, schedules and everything else became a time consuming distraction....oh and Facebook too. I'll have to admit that I got drawn into Facebook. It has been nice reconnecting with old friends, but there is only so much I want to know about what they are doing. Anyway, I've finally weened myself from Facebook and I plan to get back to my blog and artwork on Etsy.
Got to go! The Monstritos are up!