Saturday, June 30, 2012


I love a good Mai Tai.  Unfortunately the one & only Mai Tai I ordered in Kauai wasn't so good, but maybe that was a good thing...because I didn't order another and another...and it was one of my go easy on the Mai Tai's!

Acrylic on canvas pad.
 This is for Illustration Friday - Refresh. 
I had a tough time with the reflection of the glass on the table, which is supposed to be granite, by the way, but I think it turned out nicely.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Kauai Vacation Journal - Goals

I've never kept a travel journal that includes art before.  I've never made goals for vacation before, either...but I wanted to start my journal the night before we left so making goals made perfect sense.
So how did I do?
That's me!  Hanalei Bay

The kids paddled too...not always standing! (Only two of these kids are mine...we met friends)

I did eat healthy...but making s'mores on the beach is not to be missed!

Art. Every day.

Click here to see journal art from the day we snorkeled at Tunnels. 

The first of many shave ices.  My favorite flavor was coconut with macadamia nut ice cream in the bottom.

Hiking Pihea Trail

Hiking Kalalau Trail

 And no...I won't show any pics of #9.

Kauai Eye Candy

Just a trio of Kauai pictures from our trip.
Kalalau Valley

Hanalei Bay

Na Pali coast hike

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Illustration Friday - Space

It's a stretch to be sure but this is from my journal and is the view from Tunnels Beach on the island of Kauai where the reef is so large it can be seen from space.

We are just back form a two week vacation (see my previous post) and I just couldn't think of anything else but this watercolor.  One of my vacation goals (yes, I had goals!) was to creat art every day.  This was drawn sandy & wet on the beach in between snorkeling with watercolor pencils and then filled in with watercolors back in our vacation pad in the evening.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Trip vs. Vacation...Two Weeks in Paradise

I'm back from a long stay on the lovely island of Kauai.  In every way this was a dream vacation, in the works for the last two years, the dates solidified 12 long months ago, the longest vacation we have ever taken with our children.

The plane ride was easy, the weather when we arrived perfect! 

Since we had a kitchen our first stop was Costco where we loaded up on 2 weeks worth of groceries and headed up to Princeville.  Not eating out every meal saved us the GDP of a small country but here's the thing...I had to COOK.  And every morning I had to make FOUR different kind of sandwiches to satisfy four different diets.

Oh, don't get me wrong.  Everything was perfect.  Except the kids STILL BICKERED.  And they STILL GOT BORED.  Bored???  In paradise? 

My perfect Kauai vacation involves a lot of relaxing, reading by the pool or at the beach, maybe doing some art.  It also involves a lot of activity...snorkeling, kayaking, hiking, running. 

The kids idea of the perfect vacation was watching as much TV as they wanted and then violently trying to dunk me in the not-quite-warm-enough pool.  Hiking was too hard.  Kayaking was only cool for the first 30 minutes, then it was too hard.  Snorkeling was too hard and it was scary...too much current...we might see an eel!

I imagined a vacation not just from the stresses of my job but also from the every day stresses of home. Never did I consider that our vacation would be filled with stresses of a different kind! We've taken many vacations with the kids and all have been pretty wonderful.  I'm not sure why this trip was different, but it was, and three days in I was ready to call it quits and head home!

Then I came across this quote that had me laughing and put things into perspective:

A "trip" is what you take with children,
a "vacation" is when you leave them at home

I realized that traveling with children is not necessarily easy but I'd rather deal with the bickering and boredom in paradise than at home.  And even with all the unexpected stress the family time was priceless and the memories made will last a lifetime.  The hard moments are already fading from memory, kind of like childbirth...and as I download the more than 500 pictures I took I am in awe of the beauty that surrounded us for two weeks and can't wait to go back.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Illustration Friday - Hurry

Watercolor on paper

I feel like I'm in a hurry just about every minute of every day...I'm sure lots of people feel this way, we juggle jobs, kids, marriage, household chores, wellness and creative endeavors (not necessarily in that order!) It's important to stop and smell the roses. Yesterday I picked these Cecile Brunner roses and spent about 1 hurried hour painting them so I could post today.  This week feels especially crazy, the last week of school is filled with extra activities and things to remember AND trying to get ready for a two week vacation that starts Saturday!   I'm hoping that after all this hurrying I will have nothing left to do but relax...

And the smell wonderful!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Puppies, Birdies and Red Hot Pokers (Oh my!)

First things first.  Our latest puppy picture.  Our little guy is on the right.  His brother Jack on the left.

Yesterday a bird drama took place in our backyard.  A little baby birdie fell out of it's nest.  It's mama hung around, bringing it food to eat.

I couldn't see the nest so the kids and I made one using a plant hanger and old towels.  The little birdie didn't like this, he immediately climbed out - you can see him just to the left of the chains.  He hung around in the tree for a long time, his mama kept coming with food and I thought he might be safe up there.

This is why we were worried.  Our neighbor's cat Yoda.  He hangs around a lot.

I hoped the baby birdie would stay in the tree out of Yoda's reach.

The papa bird did not like seeing Yoda around. 
He screeched and screeched at the cat but Yoda just ignored him.

  The baby bird fell out of the tree and when I tried to pick him up again he buried himself amongst the succulent branches and I was afraid that trying to get him out would be too risky with his fragile little body. 

While this drama played out I was drawing a clump of Kniphofia,
but it's much more fun to call them Red Hot Pokers.
I checked on the birdie in the evening but couldn't find him or his parents.  I went out again this morning and sadly found the evidence that he didn't survive the night.  Poor little thing.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Happy Birthday A!

Yesterday it was A's birthday.  She & L are two of my oldest, dearest friends.  L & I went on a Anthropologie shopping spree for A's gift and we needed a card.  I painted these 3 little cards on handmade paper from Spain, texted the pics to L and we decided upon the peacock.  A loved it.  Which one do you like best?


Look at these unbelievable blooms!  I'm not sure what they are called but they blooms faithfully every year with very little fuss.