life

Tuesday November 8th - Election Day

As an American living abroad I am resisting the impulse to be filled with anxiety today. Instead I am focusing on work and checking of a number of tasks during the day so I can go to bed early tonight and miss the endless nail biting speculation. My Etsy store reopening is delayed until I get prints sorted. In the meantime I will be offering original artworks up on Instagram at super reasonable prices. They would make fabulous gifts and the sale of them would help me purchase a new printer and scanner.  

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Art time with kids

Both of my girls love art, especially painting and I love when we get a chance to paint together. I always keep some markers and paper in my bag for them. Sitting at our dining table painting fairies and flowers with them is pretty a pretty perfect art activity. Water brushes are super useful for this! 

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Holding Time

That is what my life here is here as we wait for our stuff to arrive so we can move into our apartment. Over a month in temporary housing and our furniture and possessions just arrived and now we begin the hard work of unpacking and moving in. We got rid of a ton of stuff when we left Boston, but apparently not enough! 

 Thankful for a Thai food lunch break between hours of unpacking. This is easily the best food we have had since moving and it is just down the street from our apartment.  

Thankful for a Thai food lunch break between hours of unpacking. This is easily the best food we have had since moving and it is just down the street from our apartment.  

A little break from illness with a road trip to Stonehenge

We are happily going car free in the UK, but for our first two months here the company that moved us out here is paying for a rental car. Being so sick for weeks on end has meant that we haven't been able to use the rental for the little road trips that we planned. Until this past Sunday when we went to Stonehenge! Over a million people pass through the Stonehenge site every year despite it being a bit of a pain to get to if you don't have a car, and still a bit of a pain with a car. But it is only about an hour and I could finally breathe without breaking into a coughing fit or gagging, but I wasn't ready for a trip to London. So we piled in the car and went to Stonehenge and it was really cool! They have very few signs for it along the way and we lost our wireless directions halfway there but we knew we were going in the right direction when we saw a bunch of big rocks arranged in a circle from the highway. From there we headed to the visitor center and took a shuttle bus to Stonehenge. I am typically not a fan of those little recorded devices that museums give out or sell but they gave them to us and they seemed to really help the children get into the idea of seeing a bunch of big old rocks. I grew up seeing Stonehenge in every history book and now I have seen it, sketched it and taken a selfie with my family in front of it. Next weekend we are going to London! Another one hour road trip.

 Stonehenge sketch. Watercolor and grey colored pencil in a pocket moleskine watercolor book.  

Stonehenge sketch. Watercolor and grey colored pencil in a pocket moleskine watercolor book.  

 Stonehenge surprises us as we drive on the highway. 

Stonehenge surprises us as we drive on the highway. 

For the many teachers in our lives. Happy Holiday gifts.

Each child has multiple teachers. How can I make a meaningful gift for so many when time and money is limited? Of course gift cards to our favorite local bakery and handmade watercolor art cards. Boston we are going to miss you so much. 

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Failed but not a failure.

Coming off the high of completing October's #inktober Instagram daily ink drawing and sharing challenge I signed up for the daily blogging challenge #nanoblopomo as a way to improve my blogging habit. It started out pretty well but about halfway through it I started resenting the challenge and remembered doing it last year and all it accomplished was blog burnout. So I stopped and promised myself weekly blogging combined with daily drawing, painting and Instagram sharing and enjoyed the rest of the month of November.  Ready for new challenges for December!

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The big chore : sorting through the inspiration.

On vacation I take many hundreds of photos with my camera and my phone . Along with the typical family vacation photos I took shots of leaves, plants and various things that struck me as having potential. Now I just need to find them so I can use them. Often I take photographs of my surroundings to use as later inspiration for my sketchbook and end up forgetting and never using the photo. Finding it months later and wondering what it is doing on my camera or phone. Digital photography is both a blessing and a curse. I am happy to have it and I certainly don't want to go back to film photography for everyday pictures this is much more affordable. But the sorting can be a nightmare.

Transient

Core Hours - Week One Impressions

Even though I didn't follow my 10-12 core hours perfectly every day without distraction I still managed to have a rather productive starting week. May there be many more to come. I mounted and waxed a bunch of artwork. Hung some pieces. Reached out to a local place to show this summer and did some drawing. I did not carve or prepare any of the paper that I got last week. That's okay because I have time for all of that. It's not even spring yet.