It’s all about Organization

It’s friday, the week after Christmas and quickly approaching the new year. My job was not closed the day after Christmas like many so I have hit the ground running. I didn’t have a chance to sit on the couch in my sweats thinking about everything we gave and got, drinking my coffee and eating a cut out star with a cinnamon candy in the middle. It has been a full week.

I have been trying to decide what to do because it has been a weight on my shoulders. This desk was a catch all for receipts. There was not one open space, it was claustrophobic. The first thing I did was sort through and paperclip all the receipts. Just doing that made me feel much better. The little yellow pads you see on the right are handy. Not very big, nicely lined and when finished with the list tear it off and toss it away.
I am a list maker, that’s how I keep things straight and that is the next thing I did. All the thoughts are swirling around in my head and I need to get it down to free up space up there also. Trust me…..this is an improvement. The beginning of organization. For me, this messiness was a major creative killer.

The next agenda item that was sitting heavily on my shoulders was going to the grocery and figuring out food to eat. The holiday food items have been eaten and the shelves need restocked here at the Hawkins house. I came up with some items that seemed tasty.

1. Homemade pizza
2. Oriental sauce with cooked chicken breast and vegetables over Jasmine Rice.
3. Fluffy French toast made with texas toast bread. (Recipe can be found in my pinterest recipe board)
4. Tuna Noodle Casserole
5. Chicken Noodle Soup made from a recipe in the newspaper.
6. Chili made from Stubbs in the bag. (Picture to follow)
That should get us through the week. I came out of the grocery $300.00 lighter but with a very heavy cart and one more item to check off my list. Here is Joan’s Chicken Soup. I really am just using the ingredients and may just use boneless chicken breast. Another option is baking some chicken thighs too, they are easy to take off the bone. I am not big on boiling chicken.I will also use chicken broth for the liquid.


Joan’s Chicken Soup calls for a parsnip,(pictured). I picked one up, and have not used one and thought I would go for it.

Another thing on my list was to make an appointment. with our family doctor. We are new to this group and have been going for about a year. I would call, get a message that says this is scheduling and to leave your name and phone number and they will call me back. There was no:, we are on vacation, our phone lines are busy, hours that they are open or no option to stay on the line. The next day I tried again, same thing. They did finally call, when I was outside the grocery store, the wind blowing by my ear and a family of five by me all talking to their mother at once. I know you are not surprised, that’s just the way things roll. Got that item taken care of and my shoulders are a little lighter yet.

Now I am sure you were wondering what this Stubbs is all about, here is the package. It can be found where the meatloaf and spaghetti seasoning packages are. I haven’t tried this yet but I have tried other Stubbs items and find them to be phenomenal. We like to have corn chips and cheese with our chili too, what about you? I will most likely do this in the crockpot.

To recap; Feeling overwhelmed and claustrophobic?
1. clean off, throw out, paper clip 2. make a list and check off your items. Very simple, nothing fancy. Good Luck
 If you have any good ideas let me know. I love to learn from others.
I am feeling more like painting now and the ideas are coming back.

Santa with his light up cheeks


I was taking pictures of the front of the house and the flash happened to be on and I liked the effect but it doesn’t do it justice.


That’s much better! Snowflake lights, little lighted up trees and lighted lanterns. The far box window has a little tree with red lights on it this year, it’s good.


For the sake of time this year I put up a small tree. We have a very large one but we didn’t have the manpower today to set it up. Old, old, old quilt underneath to cover the table. It is even double sided, the other side is a crazy quilt. It is heavy and made with wool. The tree skirt I bought at a quilt show.


A closeup of a Santa. I like the way he has been made to look old.


A large carved and painted Santa. His face is so different from the previous one.


This little one is made of plaster of paris. My Mother had a mold and painted one for each of the families.


I found him on the bargain table in Kitty Hawk North Carolina. I like his simplicity.


A tiny Boyd Bear dressed in a Santa coat. A surprise from my husband one year. The letters I painted.


A close up of his sweet face.


This girl loves this blanket! Her fur is so smooth and shiny!


Lights on the foyer cabinet.


This Santa has a button on his hand and when you push it his cheeks light up. I believe it was a Hallmark promotion one year.


Sticks with lights I put in a large corner vase. I leave them on as night lights.


I mentioned in a previous post that I just love these faux candles and scratch my head why I didn’t buy some before. I moved these over into the black bookcase and they show up quite well.


The new snowflake garland. Those led lights really put off a brightness! It just about lights up my studio from the outside.


Outside lanterns with fax candles also. I love them, the wind doesn’t blow them out.


My spindly little outdoor trees, I do love them. They were just what I was looking for. I may do a little more with them or I may just leave them as they are. I have some white snowflakes and red bows which would be pretty when daytime comes. I hope your decorating is coming along too.

A little sunshine for ya


As I write this the temp. outside is 20 degrees with a prediction of snow. We have really been fortunate this year with a beautiful, comfortable fall up until Sunday the 4 of December. Now is the season where the sun doesn’t show his face too much. When it does peek it makes me feel instantly better with more energy. Then he goes behind those grey clouds again to play hide and seek. I have gathered together my pictures of sunshine that I was called to create. This is my most recent mixed media sunflower. 5 X 5 canvas, the brushstrokes go out onto the sides of the canvas and a textured middle.


I call this my Van Gogh like sunshine for the recently complete “In the Pines”.


A torn paper sun that is warming the “Wildflower Field” painting.


I always am drawn to a beautiful sunset. We get many in our area.


I made a pop-up box and sent it to a friend. This sunshine stamp was used to go along with the coffee stamps because coffee is great with the sunrise.


An earlier sunflower painting. Wouldn’t this make you happy to have it on a shelf at work. Put a little sunshine in your work day. Again a 5 X 5 canvas.


I used that same sun on a card and made it dimensional. My sun faces have to have rosy cheeks.


This little sun I picked up at a third world shop that was possible made in Portugal or Bolivia, I can’t recall. I enjoyed all the detail in it.


From our walk through an Acres Land Trust area, the sunshine through the trees.


One morning this year I watched the sun rise and it was glorious!


A stained glass garden stake I had in front of my catmint, the sun shining on a road. It is such a pretty piece. If you live in the north and don’t get much sunshine during this time of the year, I hope you find ways that help. Enjoy the peeks of sunshine when he lets us know that he is still back there even though it doesn’t seem like it. The sunflower pictures prints can be found in my Etsy shop.

3 cats-3 geese


The cats and I are home a lot together. Since I was gone this weekend they were definitely out of sorts. Since I have gotten home this guy, Pavel, will not get far from me. He is a quiet fellow and when he meows it is more like a bluebird warble. I think he has beautiful, green, intelligent, all seeing eyes. He watches when I get ready for bed and when I crawl between the covers he is up and ready to settle in for a good nights sleep.


This gal, Lily, had the hardest time in my absence. She threw up three times. In the first fifteen minutes I was home I put her blanket on my lap and she jumped up and purred and seemed very content and that her world was right side up again. She sleeps on the other side of me at night. Sometimes it gets pretty close and as we cat people know, we hesitate to disturb the sleeping cats for some reason.


This girl, Sophie just goes about her happy go lucky business. She takes care of everyone by licking their heads. The only thing that bothers her are thunderstorms. When she hears that she quickly makes her way under the bed in the basement. She is such a dear cat, never crabby at all. I just love these three!


Today we had a cool rain and still have the remnants of some snow on Sunday. No sunshine just grey sky. These three were just floating around in the pond and the one in the middle is doing the dipsy doodle clean up. I just think how cold that water had to be since it was in the mid 30’s. We have been very fortunate in the weather department, with very mild temps. We have had some enjoyable, beautiful days and thankful for it all.


Last 2016 Art Fair


Yesterday, December 4th, I returned with my helper Theresa from from Columbus Ohio after participating in Winterfair. It was a huge event and there were so many wonderful artists, 497 they tell us. I was in awe of the diversity and felt honored that I was included. I always meet wonderful customers and artists. When the fellow artists find out that it is my first year of art fair participation they are very helpful and a wealth of knowledge. This was my last show for 2016 and it has always been a learning experience. I feel that I am wiser when I start 2017 and I will post on my website which shows I will be in next year. I have been applying so it is just around the corner. Theresa and I had a good time, good food, good hotel, just had to drive back in the first snow of the season with HUGE flakes.  Now to plan for Christmas….decorating, wrapping, baking.


I wanted to share with you my latest painting that I finished and how it progressed. I started out putting in the different colors that I wanted to use. Cool for the background and warm for the flowers. It is on a large 36 X 36 canvas. Visually I wanted large flowers just like being close up looking in. I placed the flowers using some of the shapes and vacant areas.


I also decided I wanted more of the turquoise, teal and light blue colors and just some green. Some of the areas were painted over with the said colors.


The finished product, made it’s debut at Winterfair as my showcase piece. There were many smiling comments about “It’s a Bold and Colorful World”. Customers bought a few print and you can purchase one also on my Etsy shop. It would make a perfect Christmas gift. Thanks for stopping by.