Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Chaos & Change

It's been said that all great change is preceded by chaos. 

My life has been nothing but chaos over the past few weeks.

For one....
We moved.

....

We moved!!!

If you've been following my gratitude journals for a while, 
you know that this is a huge answer to my family's prayers.

No more noisy neighbors.  
No more cramped space. 
No more arguments with my hubby over "quiet time."
(There will be other arguments & make-up moments, I'm sure).  

 And no more having to be sequestered to my kitchen table to do artwork.

Behold,
my own little art space in the making:
It's still in the unpacking mode,
and the only picture I have up yet is of my cats, Conan & Chloe.

But it's my very own.

And I'm extremely grateful.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Art Inspiration: Illustration

Thank you for your kind words about my aunt.  

I have been mourning, laughing, packing, traveling, and moving;  
It's been a roller coaster of a week.

I'll be posting more about it in a few days.

For now, here is a delightful video and poem about the world of Illustration,





Sunday, March 23, 2014

Journal Pages and a Cat

My aunt passed away last week. 
She was one-of-a-kind, incredibly smart and funny, and one of my biggest cheerleaders with my artwork, especially animal portraits.  
Especially cats.
I painted her Louie as a birthday present for her over the summer.
This week, I drew a cat and thought of her.
Love and miss you, Lisa.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Art Tip No 9 - How to Deal with Negative People

A long time ago, someone once told me, "You can't make money doing artwork."
So I stopped making artwork.

For years, I bought into the paralyzing words, "You can't," and, "You shouldn't."

Boo on that I say.

My life & artwork changed for the better when I decided to let go of the negativity.

To deal with naysayers, here are some tips that have helped me:

1)  Consider the source.   If someone tells you that you can't or shouldn't do something, what might make them want to offer the unsolicited advice?   

Are they protective of you?  
Are they generally encouraging to other people?  
Is he or she a professional?  
Are they lifelong friends or just acquaintances?   
Are they successful in the same field?   
Is it possible that they're jealous?   
Perhaps they're having a bad day?   
Are they just cranky, miserable people?   

Examining the source will help you decide whether to consider their feedback or let it fall to the side.

2)  Examine your reaction.   If a person who genuinely cares about you is offering advice and that advice makes you feel angry, hurt, or defensive, ask yourself why that is.  Is it possible you may feel threatened or jealous?  Are you afraid to try something new?  Do you feel unheard or not taken seriously?  Honor your feelings;  feelings are good indicators that something needs attention.

3)  Protect your goals.   Not everyone will want to see you succeed.  Be selective with whom you share your dreams.    

4)  Gracefully thank them for their feedback.   This one I am working on!  Sometimes you just have to nod your head, smile, and thank these people.  Know who you are and what you want, and let it go.  

5)  Limit your exposure.   Limit the craziness, for real.  Set boundaries.  

6)  Surround yourself with supportive people.   These people will want to see you do great things, make you believe you can do great things, and give you constructive feedback to help you do great things.   Ask for their advice.  Be open to their suggestions.  Cherish them!  These people are incredible gifts. 


"Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions.
Small people always do that,
but the really great 
make you feel that you, too, can become great."
- Mark Twain -

. . .

Who has been supportive of you and dreams?
How do you deal with the naysayers?

Monday, March 10, 2014

Gratitude Journal: Being Good to Yourself

If you've been with me for a while on this blog, you know that I was married once before.  
Divorce is so sad and painful, and I used to be embarrassed and ashamed that it was a part of my history.

But I don't feel that way anymore.

The girl who needed approval from a boy now knows she doesn't need anyone or anything to make her feel good about herself.
The girl who hung her head in shame now holds her head up high.

I think of this every time Jason buys me flowers. 
I think of it when I buy them for me too.  :-)

I have a happy, healthy family. 
A happy, healthy me.
A second life. 

And I wouldn't change my past for the world. 


"Experience: the most brutal of teachers.
But you learn.  My God, do you learn." 
- C. S. Lewis -

. . .

Who or what reminds you to be good to yourself?  

Monday, March 3, 2014

March Prepped Pages... Also, I Want a Skunk


I want a pet skunk, badly.

My husband won't let me have one (yet).
I'm working on persuading him.

I think I should start a "Jenny Should Have a Skunk" petition.

I would name her Peaches.
If you had a pet skunk, what would you name her?

Happy March to you guys!

Friday, February 28, 2014

My One Word for the Year

Thank you so much for all of your support about the book.  
It has been a lot of fun seeing Kona come to life.
You guys really are the best.

With all of the resent busyness, there are no new journal pages from me this week.
 I thought I would share my "one word for the year" with you instead:
Two years ago, I started theming my yearly journals with 1 word.

The idea behind choosing "one word" for the year is that it 
helps you take your big, long list of plans and narrow it all down into one focus.

You can read more about the process here:  

Last year my word was Trust.
This year my word is Rest. 

One interesting thing that I'm learning about rest it that God takes it seriously.
Heaven knows I tend to easily burn out, thinking that busy, busy, busy is better.

So, rest it is.
I rested this week by taking a small break from journaling.

I am off to bed early too.   

I might even sleep in past 8 am tomorrow.  :)

I hope you guys have a lovely, relaxing weekend as well.

. . .

Do you have "One Word" for the year?
What is it?

Thursday, February 20, 2014

The Rabbit Who Wished He Could Fly... and a Giveaway!

You can buy it on Amazon.com in paperback and digital.

The wonderful author, Erik Ammon, is having a giveaway 
for an autographed copy of the book and Amazon gift card.
To enter to win,  head on over to his blog 
and follow the instructions there.
Contest ends on Sunday, February 23rd.

It has been a fun and busy journey.   
I will share some things I've learned about the process in a future post.
Thank you for all of your encouragement along the way.

This is me with my favorite picture from the book.
And messy hair. :)


Did you buy the book?  Want to leave an Amazon review?
I would love to hear what you think!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

February Journal Pages

My journal pages from a few days ago...

And the view from my kitchen for the past few weeks:
I
am ready 
for 
spring!
. . . 

For these pages, I used watercolor, stickers, a white ink pen, and colored pencils.  
For the fawn, I was inspired to sketch this little beauty by Escape Goat on Flickr.

I hope it is warm and sunny where you are.  

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Journal Pages, Prepped Ahead... and a Time Lapse Painting

Time Lapse Painting

Hugging a baby orangutan would make me so happy.

 . . . A girl can dream. . .

For now, I painted this little lady in next week's journal pages.

Watercolor, colored pencil, sticker, scrap paper, and sweet little photo reference from Redapes.org.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Welcome, February

It is February.   

Winter gets me down a bit.
Maybe it's S.A.D, I don't know.
But I have been following a "Countdown to Spring" to get me through the blahs & blues.
(43 days 'til spring!)

I also painted a little mousey.
Because painting animals makes me happy.

I've been reading my Bible a bit more too, and marking down encouraging thoughts and quotes.

Journaling helps me find my happy.

How has it helped you? 

P.S.  Out of respect for my hubby, I asked if he would mind me showing that he was snoring.  
He said no, he wouldn't mind. :-)

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Saturdays & Sleeping In

This past week, I finished all of the illustrations for The Rabbit Who Wished He Could Fly.

It was a lot of work.
I celebrated by sleeping in until 11am today.  
Glorious sleep!
I think the last time I ever slept in that late was in high school.

I then took a picture of the images on my bed.  
I make my husband scratch his head.

I'll let you know when the book is published.  :-)

I plan to write about the process too.

Until then, I am happy to be back to journaling and popping around on your lovely blogs.

Happy, restful Saturday to you!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Encouragement

No new journal pages from me this week.  
(I am almost finished this children's book project, working hard over the next week to get it done.).

For now, I'll share these pages from about 2 years ago.
I haven't share them here before.  
I was going through a stressful time and needed the reminder.
Maybe someone else could use a little bit of encouragement too.

"Don't worry 'bout a thing,
'Cause every little thing is gonna be alright."

xoxo

See you in a bit.