Monday, July 30, 2012

A Bit of Sunshine

All photos today have been processed using textures from Kim Klassen at the Kim Klassen Cafe for Texture Tuesday.
Love, love, love these bright yellow gerbera daisies.

Don't they feel just like a bit of sunshine?

Sunday, July 29, 2012

It's My Just Desserts

Pretty or good to eat? 

Hmmm... cheesecake = both! 

When I go to the cupcake store or aisle, I'm looking for food good enough to photograph. I have been known to bite into it afterwards, but usually the cupcakes are too sweet. But cheesecake? I do like to nibble on that, but I make it last about three days. 

And the cherries? Well, I have been filling up on those the last several weeks since they came into season. I do have to admit that as the season ends, I am a bit cherried-out. Today's treat? Grapes! Nothing like summer and fall grapes...

Monday, July 23, 2012

Burlingame Ave Storefronts

Burlingame Avenue, Burlingame, CA

While I was waiting for my car last week (two recall notices!), I walked along the nearby shopping district window shopping. Such a pretty street!

Originally an old shopping area from decades ago, it's now gone upscale with little boutiques plus stores like J. Crew, Gap, Pottery Barn and Banana Republic. 

Luckily, there are still independent stores although I was shocked to see so many closed stores. As leases are up, the rents are getting raised. Still, it's a nice street with many restaurants. You can get almost any kind of food. One of my favorites happens to be Copenhagen Restaurant and Bakery, where I get Swedish pancakes stuffed with fresh strawberries. 

Texture Tuesday
All of the above photos were processed using two layers of Luminous (one at 38% opacity and the second at 38% but with the center erased at 100%), a texture from Kim Klassen. Today's Texture Tuesday theme is "outdoors" - you can see many more at Kim Klassen Cafe where textures and photos connect. 


Sunday, July 22, 2012

Wrapping Up the Week

Friday was not only the last day of my one week vacation, but also the course I've been taking, Behind the Scenes: a creative guide to blogging your passion. So sad it's over, but it was so full of wonderful tips and techniques that it will take me a while to get through everything. One fun thing we did in class was create a color palette with a photo. I had always wanted to try that, so I was delighted to learn that it was included. 

There are so many fun things to try - I don't know how long it will take me to do it all. Luckily, I have all the pages printed out and organized in a binder as a handy reference tool. Plus, I typed up all the steps from the many videos demonstrating all the how-to's. It's a good thing I was on vacation last week just so I could keep up!

Isn't this a cool binder I got to hold all the course notes? I found it at Target this past week. There was only one in this design and I had to have it. Pink, green and white, it's just too cheery. I also got three other binders in the same color scheme with coordinating designs. Check them out - I just had to pass up the less expensive white binders. If you get the opportunity to add design and color into your life, no matter how small, do it!

Oh... one more thing. Kim and Xanthe are offering another session of this course in August. Even if you've taken other courses, you will love this one.

Well, it's back to work for me this week. It was so good to take a break and work on creative things. I'm so inspired - isn't that a great way to end the week?


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Five Questions

Today we're going Behind the Scenes...

Have I told you about a class I'm currently taking? It's Behind the Scenes, a blogging class taught by Kim Klassen and Xanthe Berkeley, two women who I admire in the world of art and blogging. We are in the last few days of the course which makes me sad. It's been really enjoyable, fast-paced and chock-full of fabulous learnings. Not to mention a really nice community, as well. 

In any case, today we are having a link-up in class where we are answering five questions as part of a recent lesson. So here I go...

5 Questions

1. What makes you happy?….. in 5 words or less….?
Nesting, art, Gracie, sun, chocolate
2. Which talent would you most like to have? 
So hard... singing, tap dancing, painting, writing? So many!
3. Which words or phrases do you overuse most?
"Love you Gracie"
How many times can I tell my sweet cat Gracie that I love her? Not enough!
4. What is your favorite movie, book or both?
Casa Blanca by far. I can watch it over and over (and I have). The story, music, sound bites, actors - this movie has it all. 
As far as books go, I'll take a biography any day.
5. If you could go anywhere in the world for a creative retreat where might it be? 
Paris, so I could visit the famous Paris flea markets, eat crepes from the street vendors and visit Monet's house and garden while I'm there!


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

A New White Bird Cage

 My latest find... oh, how I love a bargain. I happened to be at Michaels looking for something when I chanced upon this black bird cage. The price tag read $24.95 but there were an awful lot of items on sale as they are clearing out for the new autumn stock. 

I had a clerk scan it and whoa.... it was $4.99! But, I had a 25% off coupon so I got it for $3.74. I promptly brought it home and painted it a distressed antique white.

Now, I know I've been in my downsizing and de-cluttering mode but it was just so darn cute with that little bird on top. Since the investment was not large, I decided to get it.

Do I have a space for it? Hmmm.... not really, yet. I may have to displace something else for a while.

Oh, did I mention that I also had to buy these sparkly little glitter birds? It's not quite a birdcage without a bird. Truth: I bought a set of these birds last week and just had to get more. Too sweet to pass up!


Monday, July 16, 2012

Floral Frenzy

For this series of flowers, I used a number of different textures by Kim Klassen. Honestly, I choose them pretty randomly, selecting different colors and shades and then I experiment until I get an image that is pleasing.

These are my gerber daisies from last week. I selected these because I liked the color variations from the pinks to the yellows. My most recent purchase was soft pink tulips but more on those soon.

Thanks for visiting and have a lovely day.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Where Bloggers Create 4th Annual Blog Party

Where Bloggers Create

I'm so happy to participate in the 4th annual Where Bloggers Create blog party and share my space with you today. In my continual quest to organize, I've made some changes since last year. 

First, I've downsized my art materials and supplies - a lot. I finally came to grips with the fact that I could create in my space for the rest of my life and not run out of materials! So, I had a garage sale and then made several trips to the local teacher's resource center to donate them. I really think I had a small store's worth of items but I feel better knowing they are going to good use. 

I also brought my favorite Ethan Allen desk into the space and got rid of the old brown computer desk. What a huge difference that made! My work table was moved into the middle to fill the space. Out went the remaining plastic storage units, a bit of culling the oh-so-many decor items, a little cleanup and voila! A space that feels lighter and less cluttered.

I love my wire mannequin. She totally fits my girlie style and it's fun to change her up.

Confession: my desk isn't always this tidy!

Another new addition this year: the bird cage memo fixture. It's rustic and filled with distressed clothes pins to hang photos, cards and tags.

My little feather Christmas tree is part of my year-long decor. Yes, I find that many so-called holiday items are actually fabulous to display year round. My reason is simple: it makes me happy. So why not? I encourage you to display whatever makes you feel good - don't set any limits on yourself! It's your space.

I have to admit that I love this little glittered bird in nest. And yes, it so happens that I found it among the Christmas decorations last year at a local store. But really, can you help but smile when you see this little gal and her eggs? Delightful!
My supplies bag - purchased at Silver Bella from Kim Caldwell of Artistic Bliss Designs. My colors area pink and green so I purchased this one but there was a fabulous black and white bag that I still can erase from my mind. Her designs are very pretty and I love how everything fits in it.

Here's my other storage unit directly across from the one with the bird cage on it. The green bins were purchased at Target (they didn't have pink that day!). 

If you read my earlier post today, you know that my Miss Gracie was helping me get ready for the Where Bloggers Create blog party. Here she is, hard at work. All it takes is the click of the camera for her to come running. Her main self-appointed job is to get in front of the camera as much as she can. Unless there's some good sunlight in the room, that is. 

Thank you so much for visiting my creative space where this blogger creates. And a thank you to Karen Valentine who hosts this annual blog party. Karen is a lovely person who I was so happy to meet in person at the Creative Connection Event in St. Paul last September. Be sure to visit her blog My Desert Cottage for the full list of participants in the 4th annual Where Bloggers Create 2012 blog party and enjoy!

P.S. Now that I've redone my creative space, I plan on making some enhancements to my blog too. Please feel free to visit again and let me know what you think!