Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Joy of a rose ...

The joy of roses - My father loved roses, and he enjoyed growing them and giving them to others. I also love to grow roses, but this is not the season for my own roses to bloom. So, I was delighted to find some beautiful roses in the grocery store. I bought enough to share with my mom and keep some for myself.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Sketch Crawl #21 continued ...

After sketching the Tower Clock, Lois and I wandered over to Lulu Carpenters for coffee and a pumpkin muffin. We walked down the street with our treats to sit on a bench and sketch the interesting building on the corner across the street. It was a two story building, but I didn't plan enough room for the height - so I was only able to capture the top. I'll have to go back and try again (or paint from the photo I took) because there were interesting yellow awnings on the first floor for Jamba Juice.

Sketch Crawl #21 - Santa Cruz Tower Clock

On Saturday, January 10 I traveled to Santa Cruz to meet some people I've never met before to participate in the world wide Sketch Crawl #21. It seemed like an interesting adventure. I met Kristin (who initiated the Santa Cruz gathering), Lois, and Jacqueline. We met at the Tower Clock and sketched it. I was only able to capture the top portion. It will be fun to go back and sketch it again so that I can include the red bricks at the bottom. I heard that the clock survived the 1989 quake, but that it did STOP when the quake occurred.

The boys are gone ...

The older boys are now gone ... they've headed back to their 'home-away-from-homes'. It was so sad to have the Christmas break come to an end. But, I'm grateful that we were able to spend a couple of weeks home together as a family. ;-)

My idea for this page was a couple of calendar entries to note the departure of 2 of my boys after the holidays. The first day was a Saturday so I placed the number on the right side - sort of like how we see Saturday on the right side of a calendar page. Then for the Sunday, I placed the number on the left - similar to how we associate Sunday with the left side of a calendar page.

Christmas Treats

2008-01-08 The holidays are officially over and the boys have headed back to school and their home-away-from-homes... and I'm immersed in many holiday memories. We sure did lots of holiday baking and we enjoyed lots of family favorites.

Ryan made the biscotti, my mom made the family favorite Raspberry Ribbon jello, I made the fudge, and Sean and Kevin helped me with the Spritz.

Gelato with the Christmas 'gift card'

Part of my Christmas gift from Ryan and Sean was a gift card which could be used for an activity with them. They both know how much I enjoy spending time with them, and they know that I'm always looking for someone to get gelato with me. So, it was a perfect and thoughtful gift! Thanks guys!!

Wine Tasting - New Years Eve

On New Year's Eve, my husband David, my son Ryan and I went wine tasting in Morgan Hill. We visited the Guglielmo family winery. It was a quiet time at the winery and we had a wonderful time tasting some of their specialties. We even bought a few 'souveniers' enjoy later at home.

On our way home we stopped at Peets for some coffee. Ryan and I had festive Peppermint Lattes. More holiday fun!

Christmas cookies

2008-12-30 As long as I can remember, one of the exciting things about Christmas was all of the extra baking that we did. One family favorite cookie was Spritz. A very dear neighbor, Doris, taught our family how to make these special cookies. We used a Mirro Cookie Press - and they are now hard to find.

Growing up I would make the Spritz with my grandmother, Grammy, as well as my mom. Through the years I've made them with my sons Ryan, Sean, and Kevin. It just doesn't seem like Christmas around our house unless we've made some Spritz ... of course they 'vanish' very quickly.

My day as a Happy Sponge

2008-12-28 The image for this page came to me at the end of a day in which I had spent my time with my "boys" - my 3 sons. At this time two of these guys are now out of the house (one at college and one out of college), so I treasure the time that I do get to spend with them. We were very fortunate that all 5 of us were able to be home together for the holidays!

I was a 'happy sponge' on this day as I 'soaked' up my time with my boys. I started the day with my oldest son Ryan (the redhead on the right) by attending church, and going out for coffee afterwards. Next I took my middle son Sean (the blond one on the left) shopping for some new pants and out to lunch. At the end of the day I made cookies with my youngest son Kevin (center of the picture) with a recipe out of a new cookbook that he gave me for Christmas. It was a fun day and it was completely filled with my boys. Thanks guys for sharing the day with Mom!! ;-)

My Christmas Mouse

(sketched 2008-12-27) Christmas decorations ... lots of memories, lots of family traditions. One of my favorite decorations is a little ceramic bell with a cute little mouse sitting on top of it. It caught my eye one day after Christmas when I was looking for something to sketch...

The Colors of Fall

(sketched 2008-11)

I enjoyed the colors of Fall in 2008. Although California really isn't known for Fall colors -- I had quite a time picking up vibrantly colored leaves this year. As I would go on walks, I felt like a little kid as I had to pick up yet another colorful leaf. I had plans to paint so many.... but at least I managed to capture a few. What fun I had!

Extending the Asilomar Adventure over Coffee

(sketched 2008-11-09) The Watercolor Journaling class ended on Sunday with lunch (sigh!). My roommate and I decided to extend the weekend with some time in a Coffee House / Bookstore in Pacific Grove. It was an experience for both of us to sketch 'in public'. Coffee, chat, painting, and a new friend .... what a nice way to end the weekend!

Arts and Crafts Design at Asilomar

(sketched 2008-11-08) This sketch was done in the Social Hall at Asilomar. The architect of the original buildings was Julia Morgan. The buildings and furnishings are of the Arts and Crafts style which is warm and comfortable. I used some irridescent paints and they don't show up in the scanned piece as well as the original.

Asilomar 2008

(sketched 2008-11-07 to 09) The sketch is of Asilomar State Beach which is adjacent to the Asilomar Conference Grounds near Pacific Grove and Monterey, California. I did both the sketch and watercolor 'onsite' as I sat in the sand at the beach. The day was cold and very overcast.

I spent the weekend at Asilomar to take Gay Kraeger and Christina Lopp Schwabecher's Illustrated Watercolor Journaling class ( I thoroughly recommend their classes. The weekend was a real joy as I was fully immersed in beauty and wonder -- the beautiful site, watercolor and sketching 'toys', and I was alongside many enthusiastic and creative people. It sure sparked the creative juices!!! What a wonderful weekend!

Point Pinos Lighthouse

(sketched 2008-10-21) My husband and I visited the Point Pinos Lighthouse in Pacific Grove, California in October. I painted this later from a photograph that I took. The lighthouse is very quaint, and it is in the same architectural style as Old Point Loma in San Diego. Some Queen Anne furnishings are currently displayed in the Lighthouse in an effort to show what it might have looked light when the female lighthouse keeper lived there!!

Art tools

(sketch from 2008-09-02) Gee its January 2009 and my Blog has sat here untouched since I first set it up in August 2008. Amazing how time flies. Starting a Blog is a NEW adventure for me... and it will take some getting used to. I've been trying to make time for some watercolor sketching this past year and plan to do even more in the future. I'm using Moleskine journals for my work to keep the drawings collected. I think it is time for me to get my 'feet wet' and start posting some of my sketches on this blog. Over time I will post some of the entries that I've done this past year.

I did this watercolor sketch over Labor Day weekend. The contents of the ceramic container are some of my art tools including my Father's magnifying glass which I treasure. It also contains some of his letter openers.