Day 279

Oops I did it again. I forgot to post about the 30 day; New Year, New You Challenge yesterday. Luckily I remembered about 11.30 pm and plastered a smile on my face because the goal was to smile more. That is one of the things I’ve had on my happy list for a while now and it actually does make you feel good. Try it.

For my bedtime meditation last night I tried; Fall asleep fast guided meditation, A sleep hypnosis. This didn’t work for me at all. The only reason I fell asleep at the end of it is because it was after 1 am and I was already tired.

The first thing I did when I woke up was a workout. It felt so unpleasant. We had a little rain overnight but only enough to make it humid. I pushed through anyway.

In today’s Adventures of Arthur Puddles we find him excited to be the owner of a hula bobble head for National Bobble Head Day.

The morning was spent creating the meal plan for the week. One of the meals was moved from last week and there are three vegetarian meals again. I’m going to have to spend some time finding some new vegetarian recipes. I also like to add a meal that produces a leftover meal from Monday night’s meal, so we can have a quick and healthy meal when hubby gets home from shopping.

Zucchini, Chilli and Ricotta Frittata a Wraps : Tuesday
Green Curry Chicken & Veg : Wednesday
Cheesy Vegie-Ball Subs : Thursday
Savoury Mince and Potato Wedges : Friday
Steak + Spinach salad : Saturday
Veggie Pizzas : Sunday
Chicken Kiev Pasta Bake : Monday

I haven’t linked the spinach salad or veggie pizzas because both meals are recipes of our own. But if you want a rough idea; the spinach salad has baby spinach, cooked red onion and feta dressed with balsamic vinegar. The salad is also good with grilled eggplant, grilled capsicum and baby tomatoes. (I don’t eat raw tomato.) The veggie pizza has onion, mushroom, red capsicum, baby spinach, red chilli, pineapple, feta, pizza cheese, tomato sauce on Lebanese bread.

The mid part of the day was unproductive. I really want to blame hubby for being home and distracting me but really it was just I wasn’t disciplined enough to do things. Although I did get my French practice done and it was another top day of timed practice runs.

During the afternoon I went to Skillshare to watch a watercolour class called Painting a Watercolour Poppy: Explore 3 Watercolour Styles. I followed along with the poppy study, doing each sketch quickly in pen as the instructor did. I then watched how she would paint the petals, middle and leaves. That felt intimidating and I didn’t want to try. I then watched the first video which demonstrated loose painterly style. I will do the watercolour tasks soon.

I spent the rest of the afternoon looking for easier art lessons on Skillshare. I think I saved about 10 different lessons from drawing to watercolour. That should keep me busy for the rest of the week.

I hope your day has been filled with colour, creativity and cake.


Day 275

Last night I meditated using Guided Meditation – Blissful Deep Relaxation. Once again it left me completely relaxed and I fell asleep instantly when it was done. It was also another night of good dreams, I think. I don’t really remember them but I felt good when I woke up.

I started the day with a workout. I find it a bit mentally harder rolling out of bed and straight into a workout but the sense of achievement is wonderful. It didn’t really do much for the lingering tiredness which ended up following me for most of the day.

The morning was spent working on today’s Puddles cartoon. I did a rough sketch, then the actual sketch and then coloured it. The whole process took about two hours. It was followed by French. The lessons went smoothly but when I tried a timed practice run it was evident the new words haven’t stuck yet.

In today’s Adventures of Arthur Puddles we find him in bed. He is celebrating ‘Festival of Sleep Day’ with a nap. I think that’s a grand idea. Naps are good for your health.

Then I found it really hard to start something new. I was tired. So I casually looked through more free classes on Skillshare and found a couple for viewing after lunch.

After lunch I started with Yoga for Desktop Warriors 1: Quick and Easy Techniques to Relax and Re-Energise. This is a free class that runs for 14 minutes. The actual Yoga portion runs for 10 minutes.

This was my first step into Yoga. The only other time I’ve tried it was back when I was 20, had stayed up all night and was watching it on TV at 6 am. I enjoyed it that day and never did it again, until today. It’s a short stretching program that ends with relaxing to the sounds of the ocean. I’m LOVING all this ocean relaxing. I did feel relaxed but not really re-energised. I’m going to do this daily to see if it can help.

I then tried The Watercolour Painting Series – Semi-Realistic Complementary Donuts. This was my first attempt at using watercolour paints and it was fun. I can’t believe I’ve put it off for so long. Working out how much water to use is hard but I feel pretty happy with my first attempt. The lessons covered composition, complementary colours and then how to do the shadows and drop shadows.

Yesterday I didn’t post about the 30 day; New Year, New You Challenge because I forgot to do it before I had posted. The second day prompt is to list things you’re grateful for. I’m grateful for the people who love me unconditionally, who support, who care and encourage me. For having all the things I need to have a comfortable life. For my mums love and support that got me through my childhood. There seemed like lots of little things too but I wasn’t sure I should list them.

Thankfully somebody has already listed what I’m grateful for. A lot of the things I would never have thought of but I am actually very grateful for having them in my life like music, rain, making mistakes. So really, I should be grateful for every last thing that happens in my life. That’s a lot to ponder. Inspired by 60 Things to be Grateful For.

Today’s 30 day; New Year, New You Challenge prompt is removing negativity in your life. This is definitely something I want to do. I read through some posts about this and found 7 Steps to Removing Negative Energy from Your Life, very helpful.

Seeing I’m making life changing a priority, I think I’ve already achieved the first step. The second two points are very important for me. I have a habit of talking negatively about myself and my achievements. I also enjoy a good complaining without ever following it up with something actionable. From now on, I’ll just do the opposite to the normal. I’m not around that many people so I feel good about number four already. The sixth point about having an action plan really is just having some relaxing or focus shifting and I’m slowly gathering those skills. I’m on the right track. Woo!!

I also did 10 minutes of doodling and got my kitchen sparkly clean. The doodle was inspired by the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle movies that have been playing on TV this week.

It has been a super full day today. I feel that I was more focused and found myself smiling at the end of it all. I wrapped up things around 4 pm because just like Arthur Puddles, I wanted to honour ‘Festival of Sleep Day’ with a nap.

I hope your day has been free from negativity, filled with creativity and bursting with joy.


Day 274

I got into bed a little bit late last night and I sort of forgot that I was going do nighttime meditation and wasn’t prepared for it at all. I had the blankets pulled up around my ears and I was ready for sleep when I remembered. I very quickly grabbed my phone, found one of the videos I’d half checked out through the day and did it. It isn’t specifically for sleeping but it had sounds of the ocean so it was very very relaxing. Soon as it was done I instantly fell asleep. I even had nice dreams. I listened to Guided Meditation – Blissful Deep Relaxation.

Homer dog woke me up this morning but that was okay because it meant I could do an early morning workout before hubby got up. I was about half way through when hubby woke. I feel like it’s been a decade since I last worked out. Felt great.

For today’s art-ing and learning I did a number of things.

I loosely followed a coloured pencil tutorial on Youtube; Draw with Coloured Pencils Part 4 – Landscapes. It was a speed walk through, so I made it a speed colouring. I also got a bit distracted and stopped following what he was doing. I used Crayola Blend & Shade pencils.

I signed up with Skillshare so I could check out a couple of the free lessons available. I browsed through some of the free classes and found one on Growing Your Creativity. The whole thing took about 40 minutes. I think the biggest take away for me was the ‘Letting go of Fear’ section. I need to FOCUS on the consequences of success rather than failure, STOP telling myself that I’m not creative and RESPOND to the negative thoughts positively. I haven’t done the exercises from the lessons, even though it would have given me the chance to make another list. I do love a good list.

While I was watching Growing Your Creativity I started to doodle. I was inspired by the shape of the instructors hair and the gap in her teeth. The sketch looks nothing like the instructor though. The quote underneath was something from the lesson. I used ink and coloured pencils.

I found two other free lessons that I would like to watch. One is on writing, one is on watercolour. I still haven’t broken out my watercolour paints. I know the time is near.

Today in The Adventures of Arthur Puddles we find him working on his New Years Resolution list. It gives us a sneak peak at what things he may be getting up to over the next few months.

All the art-ing and learning, plus some housework and lunch took me through til about 4 pm. Then I worked on French. I was feeling pretty tired so I’m not sure I got much out of it. Although, I only made three mistakes overall so I can’t complain. I managed to get the second round of lessons finished. So I feel this week will be learning, next week will be practising.

I finished the day with smiling for no reason and some singing. That was my day. It feels full. I hope you’ve had a fulfilling day sprinkled with extra smiles.


Day 269

The morning started just after 6 am and I worked out. When I first woke I knew it was early and I tried to go back to sleep but then I remembered how much I enjoyed the early workout yesterday, so I did it again. It was another solid workout but didn’t offer up much energy.

The morning was a bit on the lazy side. I was going to sing but ended up catching up with a friend instead. While I chatted with him, I was trying to work on some lists but didn’t get very far. My brain was feeling mighty defiant today.

I eventually pulled out my pen and 10 minute doodled….well, 16 minute doodled. That was my day of art. My inspiration was the song Oblivion by Macy Gray.

In the hot afternoon I took a nap in front of the air cooler.

Today has been a weirdly rough day on my brain. I’m almost organised for 2020 or at least, I know that I can get it done by the beginning of the year. I’m struggling to name a penguin but who hasn’t been there at least once in their life?

I just can’t wait til the New Year starts. I hope you’ve had a spectacular day. Smile, it looks good on you.


Day 268

The first thing I did when I woke up was workout. I missed the last couple of days because of Christmas (pretty sure that’s a terrible excuse) so it was good to get back into it. It gave me a little energy boost before a coffee boost. I felt pretty inspired to start working on a plan for next year.

I am in the process of making a monthly goal list and a weekly happy list. I plan on having an entire month of happy lists and meal plans done before the start of the year. I want to be much more organised and focused. Even though they’re small lists it’s feeling pretty overwhelming. Oh well. I’ll just take it one day at a time and I’m sure I’ll achieve.

I started my art day with 10 minutes of doodling. Well, the goal was 10 minutes but I think I ended up going for 16 minutes. This is going to be a new habit for the New Year, to start every art-ing day with 10 minutes of doodling.

I spent a couple of hours working on some ideas for the upcoming penguin project. The start is only a couple of days away and my poor little penguin remains nameless. Uh oh!!

I’m putting French on hold until the New Year but I’m really looking forward to diving back into a new batch of words on the 2nd of January.

There wasn’t much more to my day. I got a little housework done but kinda fizzled out by the hot afternoon. I’m pretty sure I made some progress on my plans though, so I will call it a good day.

I hope your days are bright and shiny and filled with the people you love.


Day 265

The morning started early. It was one of those early mornings that I’ve forgotten because it was too long ago. I think I watched a whole heap of art videos on Youtube. I was hoping that I’d done French but when I checked in with Duolingo in the evening, I hadn’t. So I just finished the day with a pretty smooth French practice. Now, back to talking about my day.

Once hubby jumped off to work, I jumped into a workout. Working out when it’s humid isn’t my favourite thing. I still did it.

So I haven’t really done much ‘lettering’ in my art-ing yet. I’d watched a Youtube video on blending with sharpies and was inspired to try something of my own. I went with the word; Paris.

I then spent hours working on lettering for a Christmas card. I think I’ve got a design I like but I haven’t finished it yet. I also doodled!!!!!! I never really know where to start with doodling so I feel pretty proud.

I also popped over to Art for Kids Hub for one last Christmas inspired cartoon. I chose ‘How to Draw Kissing Mistletoe‘. Hubby is going to try doing one of the videos with me soon. It’s nice having people to art with.

It doesn’t really sound like a busy day but I was doing things constantly. These are the sorts of days I want more of in 2020. I’ve been thinking a lot about the ways to get organised for a much more productive year. That will start with a productive week of organising after Christmas.

Tomorrow is Christmas day. Hubby’s family live about 12 hours away from us, so we can’t see them. My only family is hubby and wifey. So, hubby and I are planning on a day of yummy food and relaxing. I’ll do some art-ing and he’ll ….. do whatever it is he does.

I hope you have a magical Christmas eve. Enjoy your Christmas festivities and stay safe.


Day 261

I haven’t been sleeping well. It took me forever to fall asleep and then I woke around 5 am. I was determined to get back to sleep and laid there for what felt like an hour before dozing off again. Then I woke just after 7 am. Needless to say, I spent the day tired.

Hubby had to leave for work early and that meant I got to working out early. It felt good while I was doing it but it made me feel pretty worn out.

Then I went searching for art-spiration. Where, oh where, is my art-spiration? I thought that I would find working out the hardest thing to do in Summer, apparently it’s art. I watched countless ‘How to’ videos on Youtube, I had wifey try and nudge me into some sort of creativity (to which I dug in my ‘I CAN’T’ heels) and eventually I went to find the easiest drawing on Art for Kids Hub.

I chose ‘How to Draw a Christmas Cat Wearing a Sweater.’ I used Sharpies for the outline, scarf and sweater and a Tombow pen for the cat. I really enjoyed using the sharpies and then tried to find some other ‘Sharpie’ tutorials to follow. I didn’t really find anything I wanted to try.

So the end of the year is coming around pretty quick, as is Christmas, and I’ve decided to give myself something special this year…. I’m giving myself a break. I don’t mean I’m going to stop doing things, I’m just going to stop being so hard on myself. Whatever I get done IS enough. However I’m feeling IS okay.

I finished the day with a glorious nap. Just between you and me, it was seriously glorious! Oh, also some French. There was a mouthful of French. Oui!

If no one has told you today, you’re an inspirational person with a fantastic smile.


Day 260

When I woke this morning the smell of smoke was strong. When I looked out the window you could see an obvious smoke haze. When I looked out the backdoor at the neighbourhood you couldn’t see past a few houses because of the smoke haze. Now, before anyone gets worried, I am no where near the fires that are burning but the evidence of them is strong. Today was set to be hot.

Once hubby had melted off to work, I got straight to working out. Thankfully the heat hadn’t sparked up too much and I got through it easily. I followed it up with a cold shower, the first of the season. I’m the only one in the house that can handle a 100% cold water shower even in the midst of summer. They are very refreshing.

Then it was time to art. Today was a special day of art-ing because it’s wifey’s birthday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WIFEY!!!!! You mean the world to me.

By the time I’d finished birthday art, the day was very very hot (38C / 100F) so I did a whole lot of nothing.

I hope your day has been filled with sunshine, love and cake.


Day 259

Not a lot to tell today. I woke up late and my whole day got pushed back about an hour and a half. I eventually worked out and it was a great workout. I sang for hours while I put off doing art. Eventually, I got to that too.

This wasn’t my own creation. I followed a ‘How to draw Simple Scenery‘ video. In the video they used watercolour pencils but didn’t wash. I thought it would look nicer with the wash.

I hope there has been a rainbow in your day.


Day 258

I woke up just after 6 am and figured I’d get up. The morning was a bit of a blur. I think I watched Youtube videos. Let’s just say I didn’t do a thing until hubby left for work. Then it was time to workout. I got straight to it and worked out hard. I was a little slower than normal but I am sure I worked muscles I didn’t even know existed. Ow!

Then it was time to start art-ing. I had sketched an eye a couple of days ago but finally got round to colouring it. I didn’t use a reference for the eye, I just wanted to see what I could come up with.

After I was done with the eye, I still wanted to try another Art for Kids Hub video. I chose How To Draw A Christmas Palm Tree. This felt much closer to a Christmas down under.

Then I started work on a watercolour sketch. I got about 75% of it done then I was all art-ed out. I’ll finish it sometime during the week.

I then worked on French. I didn’t start new words today but had a really great practice run. I really need to get back to doing French first thing in the morning. I seemed to pick up so much more and I think I even pay closer attention.

Duolingo emailed me an update of my French learning in 2019. I have used Duolingo for 166 days and have completed 1,499 lessons. I have spent over 100 hours learning 5,247 words.

I can’t believe I’ve learned that many words. When I think about the words I know I can barely get to 30. I’m thinking that might be what Duolingo thinks I should have learned. It’d be very interesting to see a list of those words. Either way, I have been pretty dedicated to this learning and I feel pretty proud of myself.

I finished the day catching up with a friend and some singing. Both were very enjoyable.

I hope your day has been filled with things that make you smile.