Thursday, December 26, 2013

Telluride Plein Air ~ Lost Dollar Road, Ridgeway and Tride Alleyways

Next day, September 28th, in Telluride, we rise to slightly smokey skies (from nearby fires) and carve our plans accordingly. Perhaps a relaxed ride down valley will move us away from the smoke and there are some fabulous views to catch too.

As we weave our way out of town we take a right turn up towards the airport, but more lovingly called Lost Dollar Road to me. Past the airport we're pleased to discover the majestic views have been
rescued from condos, leaving a sprinkling of new homes and the ole' ranch buildings I so treasure. This image is of the rugged San Juan Range in the background where Lost Dollar actually winds through and over the mountains coming out just above Ridgeway. But it's a way 4-wheel drive road and we choose to return to the valley and drive the highway en route to Ridgeway.

WOW - has Ridgeway grown from when I once looked at property to buy there! New homes, B&Bs and plenty of new businesses dot the main road and some side streets too. We saunter out of the car and have a tea at a nearby coffee shop and sample the Farmers Market going on in the park. This charming town echos times gone by yet with a new vitality stirring. Here's our view from the park, drinking in the ole' business buildings that surround the town square.

Our evening back in Tride is relatively quiet. I I have the pleasure of helping my friend Hether put together a from-scratch cake to be part of the special Tiramisu dessert for her hubby in a couple of days. I also learned how little comfort I have following recipes - and why I stay out of the kitchen usually! After another test run at another pizza place (Roland seems to be seeking the perfect pizza in Telluride!), we take a new evening walk heading away from town, southward, towards the mine. The town, or maybe the mine company, have done a remarkable job of renovating the area with the "mine tailings", making a modern hike/bike trail along the river where wild flowers bloom and late summer shadows grow long.

Next day we breakfast and find the only thing on the agenda is meandering the streets, or more accurately, the alleys to catch the tucked-away charm of teeny alley homes, rustic collections and exuberant gardens. Oh my camera captured bunches but, I think this back-alley log cabin is MY
favorite. You may not have know my penchant for ole' cars and collectibles ... well, you can see this place has it all (not to mention the log cabin I almost built on one of the Telluride mesa - but that's another story).

The evening took us all into town to peruse what the Plein Air Event has calling, the "Wine Festival Paint Out". Plenty of sweet paintings and as I wandered past the artists, I gathered ever single printed favorite image I could. I pocketed many of them in a black envelope on my journal page but, the most joyful serendipity happened when I placed the two business cards ... right in the midst of the tree shading the Ridgeway Park and saw how they
perfectly camouflaged in the tree branches!

Did I mention how I LOVE journal page surprises!? ... especially when they just "POOF!" present themselves!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Telluride Plein Air ~ En Route and Arrival

We leave Moab, Utah early for the last leg of our road trip to Telluride, Colorado. The road repair avails us more time to drink in and photo the changing terrain. As we near Colorado, the landscape becomes more arid and we hit pockets of small communities as we climb onto mesas. Once on top the highest mesas, then we weave down into lush green meadows and creek curl curves.

One of the most exciting homes I saw (but wasn't quick enough to photo) was a house carved deep into the undercutting of a red rock ridge so that all I saw was the door to suggest lodging. I imagined the cool, curved walls of the cozy nest behind the wooden door. Creativity comes in so many fascinating forms.

There's effervescence stirring once we get to Norwood . . . I know we are close ... I can see the San Juan Range just beyond this mesa's edge (can you see them in my sketch?). I know several people who choose to live here in this quiet, non-pretentious town, rather than bustling Telluride. And as we stop at the grocery store for a munchie, I experience the warmth and simple-ness of this sweet lifestyle. And that part of me that loves country living aches . . .but I know, there are bigger parts of me that need fed in other ways. Isn't it educational to watch the human personality? realize all these different parts of one's self and try to feed the important ones? Anyway, this sketch was a compilation of images from the Norwood mesa.

Following two motorcyclists into Tellluride, we drink in the liveliness of main street. We stop at the Steaming
Bean for their delicious Chai Tea (remember, last year I swore it was good I only discovered their Chai the day I was leaving?) aiming to slow down, settle in.

Once we find, greet, get settled into my friend's cheery nest and have a quick bite, we decide to take advantage of the free Wednesday Concert up at Mountain Village (up on the ski mountain). It's our Cody's first ride on a gondola, and he fares well except for feeling a bit cramped for space with some playful children sharing the cab. We also discover he's not a fan of those open woven surface stair steps (great for getting
snow off your boots - but not too fun for multi-padded puppy feet). So we detour around on the dirt at the base of the gondola.

A large crowd was already settled onto the grass before the stage and we wiggled in. Ro sampled his first high altitude alcoholic drink (and was silly for the reminder of the evening) and I did a slow and meandering contour drawing of the crowd and clock tower. Often the contour drawing isn't what you'd planned (like this one) but it's offers up a fun way to later take snippets from photos and drop in some personality between the lines of the drawing. I actually love how this ended up looking - and it still has some of the moment's spontaneity!

Up for our first full day in Telluride, we breakfast and head out on foot errands. Roland has a medical situation he needs to check out, so we include the local clinic in our agenda. While sitting outside in the warm mountain air, I start a sketch of what looks like a blossoming onion. I barely get the shape down and an elder gentleman sits across from me - - and soon we are wrapped in conversation. Seems he lived here in Telluride back when the roads, like Society Turn, were just being carved into the mountains. He told me hair-raising tales of some of that work, and how his family had ranched here. Eventually, he and his wife split their year between Texas for the winter, then back to Telluride for the summer. He seemed a content, gentle mountain man. I love the mix of magic that can color one's life on a road trip. And it's just begun!

Back to our cozy room. Roland takes a nap and I get my lil' studio space all set up. I'm glad I've brought my very own favorite lamp and devise space for pens, brushes etc. Ok ... I can stay here now!!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Telluride Plein Air ~ Our Take Off!

Probably a year in the planning, this fun road trip percolated up from my last Fall's Colorado Reunion and a friends' suggestion. My dear friend,  Hether, with whom I'd lived back when I lived in Telluride, was with whom I spent a good part of my time when back last September, when I attended the Telluride Reunion. T'wasn't a high school nor college reunion, just a reunion of all who lived there in the 70's. A riot, but that's another story already told (see blog post May 24-July 20, 2013). But my friend, who has always been such a supporter of my art career, chimed in that I should come back and consider applying to the Telluride Plein Air Event that happens annually July 4th. Well, it didn't take much to get me back to Telluride, but this time, I thought I'd best bring the family along to share the event and travels.

A week before we are ready to leave our kind neighbor, Mary, (yes, the one who grows the amazing Dollar Dahlias I've painted before!) brings over a Victorian-feeling flower bouquet. I didn't know what the flowers were 'til I asked . . . but these lil' beauties, white bells with tips dipped in a pale lavender . . . lasted forever. I had to save one, pressing it and installing it into a teeny lil' page. Sweet and succinct ... just like the "Canterbury Bell" blossom it was.

We're off, launching our road trip to Telluride, Colorado, leaving Jacksonville, Oregon on June 26th. I was up and ready by 8am (a feat for me) and we drove off into the grey misty morn. Once we passed through Klamath Falls heading eastward, we were in new territory which we'd never traveled before. Through one of my new favorite valleys. Wide rolling agriculture and horses mixed with some sunshine drew me to sketch these cozy barns of the Poe Valley. Then came rolling dessert and an incredible rock incline that took us right to the foot of a rock slide. We had to wait a bit while they cleared the large rocks from highway, but continued past Indian Reservations and finally south on Highway 95 (that's where I did this quick "while-driving" sketch along the bottom of the journal page) towards Wendover. This dreary, flat country grew in drama when we could see billows of black smoke just ahead where - YES - a car on the side of the road was on fire!! I mean shooting flames and thick smoke and all! Eventually we hurried onto the Interstate 80, escaping the trills to land in quiet Elko, Nevada. We discovered two newsy items while in beautiful, downtown Elko: 1) that there is a large
Basque community there with an annual July Festival and 2) that the fabric rooftop carry all (yes, with clothes, sleeping bags etc.) had torn open at the seam exposing everything. That second fact sent us in search of any way to stitch, glue, hammer, clip or snap this gaping hole for the rest of the trip. Finally we invested in Gorilla Tape (it IS phenomenal, btw) and it held for the rest of the drive - both ways!!

Up the following morn for the last stop of our trip to Telluride: Moab! We get to look around and drink in the landscape as it morphs into red rock valleys and rivers and green trees. Once we stop to feed Cody (our Golden Retriever who, of course, comes with us) in a curious lil' town named "Helper". And had we not stopped, we'd never have seen the crazy cliffs above this wide spot in the road. Later, we stop where I can grab a shot of the Colorado River and it so captures the landscape, it went into my journal (besides, I loved the shadow cast across the bridge). And as the sun sets we curl around canyons that open up to a charming village, tucked among the giant red cliffs.

We arrive at our very comfy River Canyon Lodge in Moad. Air Conditioning and spaciousness greet us - hurrah! We have time for a stroll up main street as the town starts to sparkle with night lights and we dine, then sleep. Ahhhhhhhhhhhh . . . anticipating our Telluride arrival . . . tomorrow!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Tandem Birthdays and Gurgling Creeks

These journal pages bring a smile to face ... nice how two pages in your journal looking back at you can do that. And that's one of the reasons I relish my journaling practice ... not only does it stir immediate feelings, smells, moods, tastes, but too, it quizzes my memory. I might be better than some of those brain games or memory training CDs, who knows. I also see that moments charged with emotion are easier to remember, so that my pages mostly reflect times I want to remember. And thus, these volumes I'm creating tend to reinforce the positive and the creation of more positive. And you know what? I like that! Ok, back to these journal entries.

Early June my hubby and I get to celebrate a birthday each. His, his belly-button birthday and I, my sobriety birth date. This birthday I set aside time to create a gift for Roland and his card. A lil' burro (his favorite animal) started as a demo but grew into a sweet shadow box presentation with a wild grass installed in the foreground. We traveled to Ashland for his birthday dinner at one of our favorite places, Thai Pepper, just off the Plaza. From a shot I grabbed on the patio of the restaurant, I blended his portrait, meal and the business card to capture the evening. The snippet to save from my celebration were words, "You're the kind of person who makes the world a better, brighter place ..." and stars from the card with which Roland presented me. I punched some additional stars with my own "star" paper punch, thank you very much! Can you ever have too many stars?

The other lil' item squeezed in came from a silly cooking session. We were attempting to get cumin to come out of this spice jar - to no avail. Upon closer examination, we learned there was a seal over the cover with holes. Laughing, we peeled it off and were charmed to see a cute logo of a boy in red with the addition of the cumin that had stuck to the under side of the seal. Plunk - right into my journal!

The finishing sketch on the far right was from a demonstration for a class focusing on "Creeks and Streams". You can find evidence of the white and turquoise wax crayon I'd initially used to save or accent areas as well as the reflections, rocks, twigs and cascades to replicate our Lithia Park Creek. The class and seemingly, the sketch were a success. And more smiles.

So . . . the moral of the story . . . "For more smiles, paint and journal more!"

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Early Spring Campin' and Red Lily Calm

Ok, we've traveled through the full spectrum of camping. We moved out of the tent camping, starting with pop-up campers when we first moved to Oregon, even took a leap into the RV world towing a vehicle (you remember my Mexico tales, right?) ... with all of those now memories ... we've gone full circle again. We ordered a big 10 x 14 size (plenty of room to bed and mornin' yoga) and tested it out on the lawn at home. Then, off to truly test it out on during our May tent camping trip at La Pine, Oregon, up near Bend.

These journal pages capture some of the sweetest moments from that trip. We had some sunny and some rainy weather and I started the tent image on site, adding the luxurious plump clouds from  memory. We were joined by a dear friend who brought along his lil' camper and puppy and toured us along the pristine Metolious River (that actually has it's beginnings from a crystal clear spring that just flows out of the earth!). On our tour we ventured over to a fish hatchery (where we watched a BIG crow lunch on a sizable fish right out of the hatchery's pool) but the vision that took my breath away was the clear, brilliant colors in the churning waters of the river before the bridge.

Yep, while the boys played at the hatchery, I began my painting. I knew I'd usurp all my time getting the bridge drawn right (all that architectural stuff) so once I got the drawing down, I ignored the bridge. And went to capturing the magnificent water. T'was a challenge with the continued movement but I took many photos and feel pretty happy with the color and feel of the moment! I finished the bridge from the photo, by the way, and got to savor the time "in the water".

Those of you who own dogs ... well, you know what the scene with our friend, Roger, here is about. Perhaps you can't see the treat in hand, but you know the beggin' stance our Cody has so mastered! Had to save this into my journal!

Once home to the Rogue Valley we'd promised to spend the upcoming Mother's Day with a friend who'd lost her mom the previous year. The fresh and elegant scene along the Applegate River provided by the Red Lily Winery soothed our spirits with music. We munched on our casual picnic spread while I catch shots of the peopled, red canopied tables. Lovely afternoon.

Oh and PS ... the tent worked great, no leaks, ample room ... but we won't talk about clean up and packing of the wet and dirty behemoth ... ok?

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Portraits and Bugs and Greens ... oh my!!

Apologies for the long distance between posts ... preparing for and leading my Women's Journaling Alpine Retreat gobbled up a bunch of my time and energy. I'm back and will resume paying more love and attention to my blog. Thanks for your patience!

This journal duo covers quite a range. Mostly, it entails portrait pieces. And as usual, with a variety of levels. The first image, on the far left was actually quite a hilarious and playful moment. I was in my Ashland Art Center Studio around 4:30pm, an hour and a half before the Center closes. A cheery and very talented artist sauntered by my studio and we began talking. Not only did she do fabulous Gold Plating and Calligraphy work, but she journaled too! And she wanted to take a Private Class focusing on portraits. In our discussion we realized our only time frame was then. Scouring around for an image to use as our portrait subject we dug one out of a magazine and we went to dedicated work, giggling at the spontaneity of the situation! This was the flash finish of that session. Kind of unfinished and raw but ... I can at least tell it's a face!

The wacky trio here in the middle of the page is visiting friends, Joan and Grant, and my silly husband. Our evening meal together was full of humor and seasoned stories. I finally got them to settle down enough to get this pose from them ... a fond memory just echoing in my mind.

So these five winged seeds ... how did they appear. I'd noticed a brilliant reddish one as I parked my car one day, so of course, I collected a handful. When I decided to incorporate the seed into this page, I opted for five (it's more interesting to design in odd numbers) and I went to work cutting out my windows and Mod Podging them into place. Can't tell you my delight when the color on the previous page appeared - - and it was a pale green (nice compliment to the reddish seeds)!

Continued wacky collectibles include the sliced Dairy Queen cover for my first vanilla cone of the spring is a constant memento and then, the cute lil' tags that come off a tiny battery my hubby uses to power hearing aids. They just looked like something to me and I found that I could fit them into the space I wanted to leave blank for the previous pages clear windows. And if I planned it right, you wouldn't see them in the windows! Wellah!!!  And then, as I looked
at them - - they became lil' bugs. Legs added ... and another smile comes to my face. Can you see how fun this can be?

During this time I'd begun teaching a six-week series watercolor class. During one of the early sessions I'd caught one of my prize students doing a great job replicating and experimenting with her greens. And with no head (no it didn't hurt her), she keeps her anonymity!

Did you count all the smiles and silly-ness? Yep, my journal is a constant source of joy and play . . . my playground of sorts!!!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Ending Workshlp Trickles into Sunset

With the remaining time at the Journaling Workshop (see previous post), we'd hoped to go outside, but the day is chilly and pretty windy. Luckily we have a wide panoramic window and use it for my next process, my "Awareness Meditation". And although you can't see my beginning contour line drawing, it gave the basis for this rich page. When the contour lines were done, I began painting and coloring in the scene with my watercolors and even writing in tiny text that curved and danced around various shapes created in the drawing. I did later drop in a side view of Yelena, who sat next to me, as she worked in her journal. I can't tell you how happy I am with this page on so many levels. What do you think?

The adjacent page came from one of my Journaling "Clinics" held monthly in my Ashland Art Center Studio. April's focus was "Sunsets". With sunsets and their extreme colors, you really have to be in a bold mood. As usual, I start with a teeny bit of wax crayon (mainly as reminders as to where the different colors end and begin - - and to serve as "fences" which stop one color from flowing into the other), note where I want to save my whites and begin with my yellow (Aureolin). I've wet most of the sky area and jump from yellow, to pink (Quin. Rose), then to orange (Pyrrol) - - using a lot of pigment to water ratio. I do dip into my darker orange (Brown Madder) and some cooler red (Aliz. Crimson) for variety and richness. And while the page was still wet, I began to drop in some blues (Cerulean, Thalo and Indigo) and purples (Thalo Blue and Quin. Rose). When the page was dry I began to add the Indigo Blue landscape silhouette and finally, the delicate tree branches poking into the page from the left. The five seeds window-ing thru at the bottom right were a happy accident that occurred when I worked on the following journal page. You'll have to stay around to hear that story!

When I was finishing up this journal spread, I had to make some adjustments. Because the sunset was so strong and dramatic, I did have to pump up some of the values and colors in the opposite page. But I was happy eventually and deliberately wanted the branches and teeny text from the left page to help you traverse into the tree branches of the right page. The end result . . . a pretty dynamic duo to savor, eh?

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Refreshment ~ A Shared Workshop

Months in the planning, another Ashland Art Center Artist, Yelena Joy and I have created a tandem-taught Journaling Workshop. "Self Discovery Through Journaling" at the tucked away jewel of Hidden Springs, was a one day affair and did some deep and refreshing work.

We arrived early to set up the beautifully coral colored room. We have ample room and tables enough for samples of both Yelena's and my journals. While Yelena leads off the workshop with some breathing and awareness exercises I get to savor some of her new-to-me processes. All us participants are lead to a safe, playful place and with no design in my head, I allow marks and colors to land on my journal page. I get to hear my usual "critical" voice wondering where
the order is? the tidiness? the structure? And in just ignoring "her", this is the page I create. Viewing the curves I begin creating lil' people and fish to inhabit  the
 playful world. And eventually, just out of triangles, comes the graphic fish swimming along my border. It truly was refreshing and freeing.

After our lunch break, we gather for my portion of the class. I guide them through one of my all time favorite processes, "Animal Mandala". Everyone gives vision to different animals ~ reminding me of how different and how at diverse places we all are in 
our lives.

I giggle, because once again, I out-picture the Chipmunk. He seems to be with me for awhile and I think I sort of know what he looks like. I sketch in a rough chipmunk and save completing his head 'til I'm home and can get a better reference from which to work. Well, when I begin to finish up my chipmunk, I realize he's more like a squirrel. I have to enlarge my critter, scrape off wax crayon and re-design the entire mandala. Now, my chipmunk has the right proportions (what happened to that photographic memory I had as a child?) and the correct tail. And he even gets to dab his tail onto the underwater play of my previous page. Sigh. I do some research in my "Animal Speaks" book and feel out what text applies to me and the particular attributes I need to be wary of or work on.

The workshop continues onto the following page ... with an appropriate finale ... stay tuned!

Monday, August 5, 2013

The Whispers of Spring

As we move into March of 2013, my journal takes note of quiet lil' whispers that suggest Spring is arriving. The first comes with an annual tradition in which Roland, Cody and I indulge. Each March we see the promo on television of the nearby Grange Co-ops announcing the arrival of tiny, fuzzy chicks. YEAH! it's a red flag for Spring!! This journal post records the feathery fluffs poking around in their over sized watering trough in which the Grange Co-op presents them. When you enter the large building you hear the buzz of lil' peeps despite the enormous room. Once we arrive at the trough, I discover there is a bigger variety than in previous years. Some even with tiny tail feathers and they all hop and tweet over their sisters and brothers. It captures your heart and each year I have to be talked out of bringing one home. Cody seems attracted to their movement but we limit his viewing so as not to freak out the wee birds.

Did I ever tell you that my dad used to bring me home little chicks for Easter when I was small? We'd keep him under our parakeet cage on the floor, in a Jim Beam box with a sheltered light bulb for warmth. I was terribly creative with the name, and we called him "Peep-peep". One grew 'til he had lil' feathers and we had to find a ranch/farm that would take him. Another year, I remember my dad coming around the corner of the couch when I had "Peep-peep" out for a living room tour, and dad stepped on him. That might have been the last year I was gifted with lil' chicks. So this annual event I'm sure is a throw back to my childhood ... and a sweet one.

Shortlly after Valentine's Day, my brilliant crocus announces the approach of Spring too. I noticed how very enthusiastic my plant was this year, expanding to over eight inches across! Of course, when my Journaling Clinic came around with the topic of "Spring Florals" I had the perfect subject. Here's the quick demo.

During this same period we were reading (Roland and I read together each morning - a cozy ritual) this book that so impacted me, entitled, "Say You're One of Them". This book presents numerous vignettes of children's lives in Nigeria and Kenya that will open your eyes and break your heart. Many night after we finished this book, I went to sleep wondering what happened to the children brought to life on the pages. My
aim is to add to this illustration of the book, adding more children's feet running off the page. Well, that's my intention ...

Saturday, August 3, 2013

A Newberg Escape

Roland announced he "needed" me for February 15th, 16th and 17th. Ok, I agree and I eventually wiggle it out of him that we are going north to a small town near Portland, Oregon, called Newberg. No, this has nothing to do with "Lobster Newberg" ... but that was originally where my mind went when I heard the name.We left early gratefully leaving behind grey, rainy skies that opened more to blue by the time we reach our destination. Our early arrival allows us to hit our favored "Sweet Tomatoes" Restaurant and squeeze in a movie too. I'd tried to take Roland to see his girlfriend, Julianne Hough, who stars in "Safe Haven" in the Rogue Valley. It was bizarre that the specially released Valentine Day movie was no where to be found where we lived. So we hunted it down and he was very satiated ~ she is awfully cute. And the movie was romantic so we were all happy. Here's my attempt at
the kissing scene with Julianne and her honey.

Next morn we wake to an unplanned day. I'm buzzing through the web for things to do, so of course I check out what's going on at the Portland Museum of Art. Very cool ... I see they offer a tour of their studio artists and Roland is up for it too. We doddle around in the fabulous sculpture gardens til the Museum opens. Thrilled to find a piece, "Desert Harvest", by Allan Houser, an artist we'd just read about in a book by Kent Nerburn, "The Wolf at Twilight" (a book I highly recommend if you love authentic stories of Native American Indian life). When the Museum opened we trotted to the appointed meeting place for the studio tours and they told us it was only for children and that we'd be bored. Grrrrr ... wish they'd have mentioned that in their promotional.
Anyway ... we peruse the remainder of the floors and are enamored with exhibits on the Native American Indians of the Northwest. Most fascinating to me is an exhibit of small (say, 3-5 inches) glass creations of Indian relics. There are over three hundred of them mounted on a vertical wall that reaches two floors. The colorful, delicate pieces are mounted on a black, maybe six inch slender post that holds the piece off the grey wall. Not only are the pieces amazing but I'm quite captured with the intriguing shadows cast by the strong lighting (one is captured as best I could here). I stood
there for a good long time ... a feast for my lil' artistic eyes.

Another favorite we always have to hit in Portland is their "Pearl Bakery" (I've echoed the Pearl Bakery's window graphic in my journal page - so appropriate for the bakery). After leaving the Museum, we landed there for a yummy coffee. We needed to eat light for Roland had picked out a special restaurant for dining that night, "The Painted Lady" Restaurant. It too was in Newberg so after freshening up we arrived with appetite in hand. A charming ole' Victorian home refurbished into a cozy, intimate place. There was some entertainment factor with the five courses, but, for me, I have to say, my Lemon Souffle (which you see here - please, don't drool on the screen) was the high point of the over-extravagant meal. I did adore their double business cards, one for the restaurant and the other for the cottages. They tied the pages together nicely with the contrasting colors and elegant text.

The trip was a special treat ... just the thing that Roland loves to dream up and I get to participate in. Here I am ... counting my blessings!!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Chocolate Collage?

Well, they really aren't mixed together but, they are dancing around on the same journal pages. And, so these journal pages come into being ...

Some of you have gathered early this year may not be the most comfortable period in my life ... readjusting one's dreams ... so you may understand that sometimes feelings can only be expressed in the tangle of a collage. The start of this come to me when I was putting away to interesting things I tend to collect on my working table. They can be things I find on walks, in garbage or friends bring to my attention. I had that black, shiny technology box and the lil' scrap of lace in my hand, and looking down at them more intently, I said to myself, "this is kinda how
I'm feeling". Something about the contrast of the techi-black box to the soft, intricacy of the lace hit it on the head. And I knew a collage was brewing. Pulling out other trimmings, I found more outer expressions for my inner tangle. The paper doll with her flailing appendages (yes, they do move - on brads), words about "me hiding out" and of course, the comfort of my "Cody" pup. And ... here's the result ... still not certain of the translation, but I feel better for the expression. This lil' pink flower escaped from somewhere to lighten the mood.

Now don't worry, I've not forgotten the chocolate. As Valentines Day rolls around, I've got two agendas. One is a theme for my upcoming Journaling "Clinic" on February 15 and lil' loving treats for my honey. Passing the Harry and David Country Store here in the Rogue Valley, I notice their sign for "2 Truffles for the Price of 1"! And knowing Roland loves dark chocolate, the car pulls in and you know the rest of the story. When Valentine's Day arrives, Ro and I discover we'd both purchased the very same chocolate covered bing cherriesonly I'd brought twice as many (no surprise to those who know me). So now, we had to get rid of some of them for our health's sake. The Journaling "Clinic's" theme became "Chocolate" and I furnished actual truffles to paint from and consume. Here's my lil' demo for "chocolate" and I had to incorporate the truffle label too. Still quite tantalizing as I look at it. I'm probably safe from chocolate flood again, at least 'til the holidays ...