Day 241

Homer decided he wanted to go out at 5.30 am and guess who he woke up? Me. I knew there was no chance that I’d get back to sleep, even though I was still very tired. I watched Youtube videos until a coffee magically appeared in my hands. (Thanks, hubby!) Then had a little light conversation with hubby and waited for him to go to work.

Once he was gone, I worked out. It’s the last day of the workout week, so I pushed even harder today. I’m really glad to be back on track with this goal.

Then it was time for art. I’m not feeling very inspired at the moment and after a lack of sleep, I didn’t feel like putting much effort into it either. During my morning of Youtube, I had found an art channel for kids called ‘Art for Kids Hub‘.

I tried; How to Draw Ariel the Little Mermaid. How to Draw a Cartoon Flamingo and How to Draw an Owl.

I also found a ‘How to Draw a 3D Hole‘. Even though I used a ruler, I still managed to make every line uneven.

Tomorrow is the start of the weekend and that means some relaxing, some WoW (maybe) and a little art.

I hope your day has been magical.


Day 240

I actually slept through until alarm time today. Morning was still very very morning though and it only got slightly better when drenched with coffee. When hubby buzzed off to work, I got to working out. It was another fierce workout. Go me.

The watercolour bird I did the other day has been sitting on the coffee table ever since. I really enjoyed doing it, so I thought I’d try a bird again. I found a lovely reference of a rainbow lorikeet. I made a couple of changes to the plants surrounding the bird (because of space,) and then made a big mistake with the body. At least I’m learning.

I spent the afternoon doing rough sketches of a ladies body. I used reference photos from LaLunatique on Deviant Art. I used the ‘Standing‘ and ‘Relaxing Reader‘ sets.

By the time I was finished art, there wasn’t much time left before hubby would get home from work. I stuffed a little French practice into what time was left. It was a good practice run. Although, it is always a good practice when it’s focusing on the things I first learned. Still struggling to pick up the latest group of words.

I hope your day has been filled with smiles, satisfaction and sandwiches.


Day 239

It was an early start to the day and I indulged in too many ‘Good Mythical Morning‘ episodes, while indulging in too many coffees. Once 8.30 am came around I was bouncing and ready to workout. It was another solid workout. I’ve really been pushing hard this week and for the most part, it’s been feeling great.

Then I moved on to art. It’s been… a day. I really wanted to try creating art with charcoal and pencil. I had a couple of ideas and just jumped in to try them. The charcoal was a lot messier than I thought and it didn’t apply well over the pencil. Even though it’s a bit of a disaster, there is something about it I like.

I tried a couple of pencil and ink sketches but I only finished the sketch of a ladybug and flowers. With a little digital help, the colours turned out pretty nice. I’m proud of myself for trying to do my own thing with no references.

I also worked on French and started putting together my plan for ‘Project Penguin’ that will run for all of 2020. I have about half a years worth of ideas already. I feel like I’m biting off more than I can chew but what’s life without a challenge or two?

I hope your day has been filled with the things you love.


Day 235

Today was a good day but it feels like I’m missing something. I woke at 6.30 am and convinced that Homer would get me up around 7 am, I decided to stay up. Homer dog didn’t even get out of bed until 9 am. I would have got a sleep in.

I did get a chance to catch up with a friend in the early morning, so it was definitely worth getting up when I did. I probably overshared again. I’ve had that ‘sinking’ feeling all day.

A big portion of my day was spent in WoW. No surprises there. It was enjoyable enough.

In the afternoon there was a little art. I found a Youtube video; How to Draw a Landscape with Charcoal. I mostly watched the video. I didn’t really. I skipped in big time chunks to see the process and then just went for it.

We finished the day with a delicious vegetarian meal; Fully Loaded Baked Potatoes. The ‘bacon’ is made from mushrooms and it was super delicious. It tasted like the best parts of bacon and just melts in your mouth. Try it!!

I hope you’re having a deliciously satisfying weekend. Take care.


Day 234

I started the day late and I can’t really remember why. There was conversation, there was coffee but I don’t feel that was enough for such a late start. Eventually I got into gear and got to a workout. Seeing it was the last one for the week, I pushed even harder than normal. It felt good.

Then I spent hours looking at charcoal drawing videos on Youtube. Once again, I was ill prepared for what I was attempting. Most of the videos I watched, people would use a range of pencils, sticks, fancy erasers and something for drawing white highlights. I only have black charcoal sticks and a basic eraser. That didn’t stop me from attempting; Deer in Misty Woods. The deer would have been much easier with a charcoal pencil.

The afternoon was filled with lots of creativity. For the first time in months, I worked on writing a story. I was inspired. Thank you, inspiration, you still have me smiling. Although, I didn’t get anything finished because I kept bouncing between creative things.

In between writing, I started singing. I recorded a number of songs. Songs I actually liked. I’m not sure I’m brave enough to share them though. There is still room for improvement.

I also stuffed French in there. I’m worried about this new batch of French words. I finished the learning levels and I’m still unsure on most of the words. Maybe I just haven’t been as focused this week? Or maybe it is just getting harder? Either way, the next week of practice feels a little daunting.

Tomorrow is the first day of the weekend and it’s a day of relaxing. I will still try and get a little art done. I’ll need something to lift my mood by the afternoon, I’m sure.

I hope your weekend is filled with good friends, good food and good feels. Happy Weekend.


Day 233

I woke up around 7 am and did the usual sitting, staring and coffee until hubby left for work. Normally I would jump into a workout but instead, I spent time with wifey. She wasn’t feeling the best and needed a distraction. I am a marvellous distraction.

A couple of hours later, I got to working out. I pushed really hard and made everything ache and it felt so good.

I wanted to do another charcoal portrait, but after four or five rough pencil sketches, I knew today was not the day for it. I found a cute photo of a baby elephant and attempted that instead. I chose this reference because you couldn’t see its feet, which meant I would need to try drawing grass.

After lunch I got to French. Every day I remember one or two more words but I’m having a lot of trouble with one of the practice exercises. Sometimes they will give you a number of words and you have to rearrange them into a sentence. I struggle. I mostly know what the words mean but I get confused easily when they’re not in the right order. Ugh.

By the late afternoon I wasn’t feeling great so I took a glorious nap. Never underestimate the power of a nap.

I hope your day has been everything you wanted and more. Smile, just because.


Day 232

I had the same overwhelming dread that the last few weeks worth of mornings have induced. My inner child wants to spend the day doing carefree, self indulgent, easy things. My inner adult knows it should send that child to the naughty corner until the work gets done. Thankfully, my inner adult keeps winning and I push myself to be a functioning human.

After a delicious coffee and about an hour of random staring, an equally uninspired hubby dawdled off to work. That’s like the starting gun to my day, so I worked out. I was almost going to skip it and get straight to art but seeing I actually enjoy it when I get going, I got going. 30 minutes later, my arms ached and going back to bed was appealing. I pushed on.

I got straight into French. L’ordinateur est sur la table cafe. Hooray. I remembered a word from the ‘At work’ set of words. Three days down on this new topic and…I remembered one word.

I wasn’t feeling overly arty but I did want to do something creative (and something on my Happy List) so I sang. I spent about 40 minutes doing that and got pretty close to recording something I like. I know it will happen one day.

Once I was done singing, I searched for some inspiration for art-ing. I wasn’t even sure which medium I wanted to work with but after the ease of the charcoal drawing yesterday, I figured that would be my best option.

I chose a photo of Anthony Bourdain. He was one of my favourite TV chefs. I loved his sense of humour, his passion for food and he just seemed like someone I’d enjoy hanging out with.

There are a couple of things I would change about this portrait, if I could. The lips should have been a little higher and there is a fingerprint on his forehead that I just could not get rid of. It happened very early in the process (and I don’t remember doing it). I tried to erase it, colour over it, smudge it and it is still proudly there. I’m just going to pretend it was Anthony’s fingerprint of approval.

I spent the evening hanging with a friend and it was the perfect end to a really good day. I am smiling and it feels nice. I hope your day has been filled with smiles, joy, creativity and something delicious.


Day 231

I woke at 6.30 am and started the day. By that, I mean I sat around half awake, sipping coffee until hubby left for work. Once he had, it was time to work out. I was looking forward to working out today and probably pushed a little too hard. My shoulder has been a little sore all afternoon.

For art today I used charcoal for the first time (after a suggestion from MJ Seal). I searched Youtube for a ‘how to’ tutorial and found what I thought would be something fairly easy; How to Draw a Bird Head. I used a charcoal stick not a charcoal pencil. I blended with my finger and a blending stick for the line work. It was fun and messy.

I also attempted another portrait sketch in pencil. I know I want to practice face features and I figure it’s the best way to make sure I’m practising them evenly. I referenced another photo by Johan De Jager of a man wearing a hat. I used a paintbrush to blend today. It was a little nicer than using my finger.

I had a hard time getting a good photo of this sketch. The light kept reflecting off the lead because it was so light. I started with a 5H pencil and planned on finishing with other leads but I just didn’t finish it. I put it in an editing program, worked the contrast more than I should but came up with something that I rather liked. It’s very grainy but I felt that gave it more character.

I had a really good French practice but weirdly, I still can’t remember any of the words. Le portable? Something about … e-mail? A few more days and I’ll have a better grasp on these new words.

I remember when I first started doing French, I’d feel so frustrated not knowing the words or not remembering the words. Now I know it’ll happen, it just takes time. I’m not stressed or worried about this aspect of my journey. Slowly but surely I will learn French. I’m growing!!!

I could have got more packed into my day but I have enjoyed the things I’ve done and I have a smile on my face. I hope that your day, whether full or relaxed, was one that made you smile.


Day 230

When I woke up my first thought was; ‘Ugh’. Another day was starting and it was a day I didn’t want to participate in. I also knew this was completely silly and probably just my mood lingering from yesterday. I sipped coffee and waited for hubby to leave.

Soon as he’d whisked off to work, I worked out. YES! I actually did what I was supposed to. It wasn’t a particularly good workout but I felt proud that I’d got it done.

That was the motivation I needed to start a new topic in French. This is a group of ‘At Work’ words. I don’t remember any of them. I do remember that I was able to say them easily and knew what a lot of them meant without having to check first. A week of practice and I should have them.

I usually add to watch a ‘world movie’ on my Happy List. I’m not much of a movie fan in the first place but I enjoy watching something French or as I’m coming to learn, Norwegian movies. Today I watched The Ash Lad: In the Hall of the Mountain King. It was made in 2017. The landscape is breathtaking and the effects were believable. Seeing I read it, I can’t really comment on the acting. It was a nice little trip into Norwegian folklore. I really enjoyed this movie.

There were three art projects that I wanted to work on today. A watercolour, a portrait sketch and something for a friends birthday.

For my watercolour, I wanted to try something very simple and spend more time building layers of colour, so I wouldn’t feel the need to use ink. I used this opened window photo as my reference.

Yesterday I did a search on Unsplash for Ho Chi Minh City. I scrolled through pages of photos and found some amazing and inspiring cityscape shots. Then I saw this photo of an older man. His face had so much character, I knew I wanted to try and sketch it.

This was a rough sketch with one pencil. I played around with the contrast in an editing program so that it was easier to see. I have such a hard time getting the right ‘natural light’ for photos.

The last art that I worked on today was a penguin sketch for my friends birthday. I wish I could have done more for him. He has been a very shiny light in my world and I’m not sure a penguin adequately expresses just how much I appreciate him.

Today is new Happy List day. It’s mostly a to do list, with a handful of self care. I already got a few things done, so it feels like I’ve had a great start to the week.

  1. Workout, 5 days
  2. Drink 2 bottles of water, 5 days
  3. Art, 5 days
  4. Do 3 art lesson/’how to’
  5. French, 6 days
  6. Smile for 10 minutes, for no reason, 5 days
  7. Sing, 2 days
  8. Watch 1 world movie
  9. Massage legs, 2 days
  10. Nap

I have just spent the last 10 minutes smiling for no reason and it’s made me feel pretty good. I’m looking forward to tomorrow.

I hope you’re in good spirits and good health. Have a fantastic week.


Day 227

I started the day on time but I don’t really remember my morning. It feels like it was years ago. I know I had another great French practice and my kitchen is sparkly clean.

When I sat down for art I thought I’d try another portrait. This time I used a man’s face photo taken by Johan De Jager. I’ve been using a ruler to get the space in between features as accurately as I can. The one thing I’ve noticed is the slightest deviation in a line, can make a face look very different from the reference. So this sketch doesn’t really look like the reference but it does look like a mans face.

Once I was done, I wondered if I could digitally colour this sketch. I opened up ‘Krita’ and being it was my first time using the program, no, I wasn’t able to digitally colour in this sketch. One day maybe.

I then spent a couple of hours working on a lake and greenery digital image. I went for this image because there are brushes that will do the job for you; ‘stamp leaves’, ‘stamp grass’, ‘stamp grass patch’, ‘stamp water’. I tested brushes, I played around with colours, I layered many layers and came up with something kinda cool.

Want to know more about Krita?
Krita is a professional FREE and open source painting program. It is made by artists that want to see affordable art tools for everyone.

While I was browsing blogs this morning, I stumbled upon a list of ’40 Odd Things About Me’ on; Quiet Water Craft. She found the post on another blog I follow; NothingButKnit. That isn’t where it started. It was found on Stitched Roots. These three blogs are worth visiting, reading and following.

1. Do you like mustard? Yes but only when used sparingly
2. Choice of carbonated beverage? Brown Cream Soda
3. Ever travelled to another country? Yes. New Zealand and Vanuatu
4. Whiskey, Tequila, Vodka? Vodka
5. Hot dogs or Cheeseburgers? Cheeseburgers
6. Favourite Type Of food? Le fromage (Cheese)
7. Do you believe in ghosts? Yes
8. What do you drink in the mornings? Le cafe avec le chocolat (Coffee with chocolate)
9. Can you do a 100 push ups? No
10. Summer, Winter, Spring, Or Fall? Winter
11. Favourite hobby? Art
12. Tattoos? None but I would love lots
13. Do you wear glasses? No but I need them
14. Phobia? Just about everything
15. Nickname? M
16. Three drinks you drink? Coffee, Water, Hot Chocolate
17. Biggest Downfall? Answering hard questions on about me lists
18. Rain or Snow? Rain (if we didn’t have a hole in the roof)
19. Piercings? None now. As a teenager, I had three in my left ear
20. Age? 38
21. Taken or Single? Taken
22. How long taken or single? 15 years with hubby, 8 years with wifey
23. Kids? One fur-child; Homer (He’s a Pomchi)
24. Favourite colour? Pink
25. Employed? No
26. Can you whistle? Kinda
27. Where were you born? Wollongong, NSW, Australia 
28. Brothers or Sisters? Only child
29. Ninjas or Pirates? Pirates
30. Surgeries? One, to remove a bone tumour from my left arm
31. Religious? I believe in something
32. Shower or Bath? Shower but maybe bath if I had a nice one
33. Like gambling? If I could do it for a living, I probably would
34. Are You Loyal? To the very end
35. Broken bones? I broke my arm many times, then they discovered a tumour
36. How many TVs in your house? 3
37. Worst pain ever? When my arm was hit by a body board and the bone snapped completely
38. Do you like to dance? Love to dance
39. Are your parents still alive? Sadly, no. My mum had a heart attack, my dad passed after a short battle with cancer
40. Do you like camping? In a hotel, with room service, yes.

If you would like to take part in the ’40 Odd Things About Me’, feel free to comment a link to your answers on this page.

Well that’s a whole lot of stuff. I hope your day has been stuffed full of things that make you smile.