The sloth on my screen makes me smile


As each day passes, I become more aware that lately I don’t  always “people” well.  Maybe I never have. I am kinda socially awkward.

Perhaps that is why I love to use this forum to say all the things that I find so hard to say to people in real life.

Or perhaps it is just that the older I get, the less tolerance I have for bullshit.

Either way, it is what it is, and happily, despite being sorely tempted, a very annoying young classmate was not stabbed with my mixing knife yesterday in art class.

It was a morning of challenge and frustration with my art as I worked solely on skin tones and trying to get hubby to look like hubby, not helped by her incessant yapping and demands on our teacher’s attention. (Butting in is soooo rude)

But progress was made, no blood was shed and I left class mentally tired but happy with what I had managed.

I came home to an empty house.  All males either working or shooting sticks at circles and it was pretty wonderful.

Music was soon cranking and instead of my oils, I laid out a palette of acrylics, grabbed a smaller canvas (10″ x 14″) and painted a little seascape using mostly my palette knives.

After the intense session of painting of face and hands, I needed something that wasn’t people.

It came together quickly and I am pretty happy with it.  Loose, textural and dramatic, I feel I captured the essence of that rocky shoreline and the crashing waves.

Some touching up still to do maybe, but it refreshed my mind and allowed me to simply get messy.


It took me to my happy place.

Hubby took me to another happy place today.

Minds out of the gutter.

We went to the beach.  Summer is finally starting to happen and today was 33 deg C and gorgeous.  Perfect weather for a walk along the sand, and getting the toes wet.


I have often said it is the simple things that make me happy.

Like our movie date last night.  “Fantastic Beasts and where to find them” preceded by lovely dessert and Iced chocolates.

Couch time today.  A trashy romance novel which may have included some napping.

Getting out in the garden and planting some new colour – roses and lavender.  A lime tree to go with our lemon tree (margaritas!!)

A hug from my boys.   An icecream.  Music.

My friends, especially the ones who know I am weird and love me anyway.

Happy things.  And the things that keep me sane when “peopling” and life gets hard.

So what makes you happy?  And stops you from stabbing people with blunt art equipment?

Feel free to share the smiles.







What is important


Everybody has them.  And they are not always the same as yours.

And as hard as that is, you have to accept that.

As the world is melting down over the election result in the USA, I had my own little meltdown.

Over that deadly combination of Christmas planning and family.

Those of you that know me, know that I am not really religious.  While I consider myself spiritual, and am open to the concept of a God, I do not go to church nor do I believe that I need to.

I had a basic Christian upbringing and celebrating Christmas is a firmly entrenched tradition.

But this year, despite bending over backwards to accommodate everyone, to try to get a family christmas meal organised that includes not only my immediate family, but also my parents and brothers (and families) , it seems that my brothers have different priorities.

The end result, after tears and hurt, is the acceptance that our family Christmas (my side) will consist of lunch at a favourite pub up the coast on Boxing Day for just 6.  Myself, Hubby, my boys and my parents.

Because my priorities in the end include my own well being and letting my brothers absence upset me is a waste of emotional energy.

A family christmas or any occasion should be joy filled, and cherished.  I still have both my parents and that is something I continue to be grateful for.

Life is too short to stress over people for whom your company is not a priority and perhaps it is time for new family traditions.

New art on the easel

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“The Moment”

This is going to be a portrait of my Hubby doing what he loves.

He is holding his new compound bow and the photo I am working from was taken at the split second he released the arrow towards the target.  The string will be slack, and you can just see the arrow on the right of the picture.

It is a very cool moment and something hard to catch with the camera.  The bow for those that care is a Hoyt Defiant.

It’s a biggish canvas, and I am working in oils and that means I will be taking my time over it, although what you see has been done in about six hours over 3 sessions.

It isn’t the easiest to paint so far, simply getting the shape and angles on the bow has been tricky but I do love a good challenge.

Lots of light and contrasts will be needed to really give the painting depth and make it at least recognisable as my man.

I’m back to work today after two weeks of leave.  I confess it’s hard to be motivated and I am a little worried the work pants might be tighter than when I started my break.

It will be good to see my friends and regular customers again and get back to routine.  It is getting close to our busy time of year, people get a little nuts at Christmas time.

Still time for overseas posting so if anybody reading this would like to buy a painting from me, drop me a line.  I still have a number of smaller ones that would possibly make good gifts.

Wishing everybody a good week.  Keep smiling.




We are all but specks in the Universe

Twelve months ago, on this day, I was saying goodbye to Texas and heading home after the most amazing adventure of my life.

Little did I know that I would also be saying goodbye to a friendship that had been the original motivation for the trip only a few short months later.

It has been a rollercoaster of a year, emotionally.  And I confess to wondering if perhaps when the magical date of the anniversary rolled around, there might have been a break in the silence.

Which then led me to wonder if that was what I really wanted.

I don’t know.  I am still a little confused as to what I did that was so terrible that led to me being “ghosted” but in the end, perhaps I am better off and it is his loss as we all know that I am pretty bloody awesome (and so humble about it too)

I do know that when you are standing on the edge of a cliff with the immense expanse of the southern ocean in front of you,  you gain a much better perspective of what is really important.  As massive waves crash on rocks formed from volcanoes millions of years ago, you realise just how precious and fragile life is, how we need to embrace the positive, accept that the past has happened, and it is better to look forward instead of back. (especially when walking on the edge of a cliff)

If you look closely, very closely, at this photo, you will see what I mean.  Hubby is in there somewhere.  A tiny speck, dwarfed by mother nature’s magnificence.


This holiday we have just taken is about as different from the USA trip as you can imagine.

Instead of towering buildings, it was immense cliffs and glorious coastlines.


Instead of fancy hotels, it was a  shack right on the beach, where we could watch the sunlight play on gentle waves and the only sounds were of seabirds and hubby gently snoring as he napped on the couch.

Bitumen roads were traded for dirt and rock tracks, pavements for incredibly white sandy beaches and we could go for hours without seeing another human being at even the most popular of tourist destinations.


There was no squirrels, but we saw dozens of emu with chicks, lizards including a beautiful goanna and of course kangaroo.

For this burnt out city girl, it was as close to paradise as you can get.

I took my paints.  I had ideas of placing the easel on the beach and painting something fabulous “en plein air”.

Lets just say it was a learning experience.

I learned that acrylic paints dry much too quickly in a sea breeze.  I learned just how hard it is to keep within a frame without some sort of viewfinder to assist.

I learned that fly repellent is pretty much useless against sticky little bush flies determined to get in your eyes, nose and mouth.

And I learned that flies do not understand (or simply choose to ignore) ” Fuck OFF you little mongrel bastards” said with passion and much waving of hands.

Flies also become “walks” after landing in bright yellow paint.

But despite not creating a masterpiece while away, I have come home with so many “potential painting”  ideas and plenty of inspiration to last me a while.

Like this guy.  Painted in the comfort of my studio.


Before I finish this post I just want to say a bit of a thankyou to my dear blogger friend Pickelope.  As I said in the start of the post, it was a bit of a week of mixed emotions and to be the subject of such a beautiful blog post, was incredibly uplifting.  You can read what he had to say here – A tribute to you.

With beautiful friends like him and all the rest of you, I am truly blessed (even if some people think I am crazy)

There are a few more holiday pics on my insta – link on the side bar.  Time for me now to finish this off.  The sun is out and I still have a few more days of holiday left to enjoy.

With smiles and hugs