Tuesday, May 16

And then there was three!


Things have been very quiet over here... with reason. I had a lot of big plans this year for my artwork and art business, but then we got a very happy surprise - we got pregnant! :) Baby is due September 28th, and gender will be a surprise :) We could not be more thrilled! We had been trying for quite some time, so actually *getting* pregnant was far from my mind when I was dreaming up all these plans as it just didn't seem to be happening for us - and then it did :) 


We officially passed the halfway point last week. We did our 20 week ultrasound the other day, and all is well - so I thought I would finally share it here. I won't lie - I feel like I have been pregnant for forever - we found out when I was just 3-4 weeks in mid January - so super early.


The first trimester was a little rough - I had nausea only at night, so I could at least go to work and function during the day. I never threw up, which was amazing. Then around 13-14 weeks, I had to work a week of night shift - and after that week I have felt completely back to normal :) So I am now in what I'm calling my "honeymoon" baby phase hehe. My biggest craving so far has been watermelon.

Being that making a baby is hard work, and I work at a job where it is pretty physically demanding on a normal person - I work in a hospital - I am pretty pooched at night and only do what I have to do, and then go to bed. So that would explain my absence here, and if you follow me on my other platforms - my absence of creativeness over there.

We are creating a 'Woodland' nursery, and I have a few DIY projects that I hope to share - but again, I cannot promise that will happen. ;)

Friday, January 13

Snowflake Keepsake Watercolour Painting


It has been blustering cold these past few weeks where I live, and the snow has not stopped at all. I've been home numerous days due to roads being closed and poor driving conditions. Last week, the days I did end up going to work, my drives have been almost twice as long due to all the snow. It is scary sometimes, driving and not seeing even the hood of your vehicle. It just sneaks up sometimes too - where it will be nice at work, and nice at home, but somewhere in middle it's not. I go slow, and make it home :)

But once I'm home, and I look out - the snow is beautiful. And I do love being cozy inside drinking copious amounts of tea while the snow falls - or, being out in the snow trudging through it with my snowshoes. It has got to be one of the best outdoor, winter workouts. Especially if you have to break the path yourself!
"Snowflake Keepsake" - Original watercolour painting

It is no surprise then that I painted this Mason Jar winter painting. "Snowflake Keepsake" brings together those huge, fluffy snowflakes that I love so much, together with the Mason jar motif that I have really been feeling this winter (and that has shown up in other art work as well).  

This painting came together so much better than I could have imagined, and I'm so excited to share it with all of you :) 

Monday, January 9

2017 Watercolour Calendar and FREE print!

https://www.etsy.com/ca/listing/163952076/2017-12-month-calendar-watercolour-trees

I am pleased to be offering a 2017 calendar this year! It was on Pre-Sale in 2016, and I have a few left.

https://www.etsy.com/ca/listing/163952076/2017-12-month-calendar-watercolour-trees

This year's calendar features a lot of new artwork - some that have yet to been added to the store! So a lot of fresh, new artwork to grace your desk and walls with.

https://www.etsy.com/ca/listing/163952076/2017-12-month-calendar-watercolour-trees

As always, it comes with a mini-easel to display the calendar. I've also included the option this year to just receive the cards to display as you wish. That way, those who have purchase the calendar with the easel in previous years can just opt for the cards and re-use their easel if they wish.

https://www.etsy.com/ca/listing/163952076/2017-12-month-calendar-watercolour-trees

As an incentive for the remainder of January and February - all orders will include a FREE 5x7" print of your choosing from the shop. All artwork presented in the shop can be printed 5x7". When checking out, just include the name or link to the print that you wish to receive in the 'Notes to Seller', or you can message or email me after with your choice. You can find this calendar in my online shop, here.

Sunday, January 8

Cook With Angie: Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

 
Winter days have us craving comfort food to warm the soul. This simple soup is silky and delicious! You can make it with typical pantry items. We used a Butternut squash that we purchased from a local farm stand in the fall.


I typically do not like winter squash - it has just never tasted amazing to me. But, in this soup - the celery gives it a more 'mixed vegetable' taste, and the squash makes it super creamy without having to use any cream. Making it so much more healthy. If you would like to make this soup vegetarian, just substitute in vegetable stock for chicken stock.


This soup recipe does not take a long time. While roasting the squash takes the longest time, you can throw the squash in the oven while doing other things around the house. Then when you take it out to cool, start prepping everything else and go on wards from there. You could even do that the night before!

Total cooking time: 45 min - 1 1/2 hr.         Serves: 4-5

Ingredients:
  • 1 medium - large butternut squash
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 - 3 stalks celery, chopped - I included the leaves on the stock and everything, no need to waste
  • Olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 4 c. chicken stock (I used pre-made)
  • Salt and pepper to season
Step One. 
Preheat the over to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Cut your squash into quarters and scoop out the seeds and 'innards'. Place squash on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Roast until soft. (~ 30 - 45 minutes). Take out of oven, and let cool to touch so you can remove the skin from butternut squash. Set aside

Step Two.
In a pan, drizzle in some olive oil and saute the garlic, onions and celery until soft.  While cooking the vegetables, heat up the chicken stock to boiling.

Step Three. 
In a blender, or food processor, combine the butternut squash, cooked vegetables, and half of your chicken stock. Add nutmeg, maple syrup and salt and pepper to taste. Blend until smooth. You may have to do this in batches depending on the size of your blender. Stop to check the consistency of the soup - if you would like it thinner, add more chicken stock. I typically use all the chicken stock, as I enjoy a more soup-like consistency.


To serve, spoon into a bowl and drizzle with some olive oil.  Sprinkle some nutmeg on top and enjoy :)

Monday, January 2

Happy New Year!

I would like to welcome everyone to the New Year! It always feels so amazingly refreshing to start a new year. Last year was a pretty amazing one over here. It was very busy, but big things happened! I'm looking forward to an even more amazing year this year - with much bigger plans!

My biggest accomplishment (besides getting married to my favorite person ♥) - I started teaching! Yes! That's right! I've begun teaching short private group painting lessons. I'm still pretty new and it's all very fresh and exciting - but it's the stepping stone to much bigger things. It is something that I quite honestly never saw myself doing - I'm pretty shy in front of people I don't know. But I pushed myself, and here I am! :)

I feel that experience has pushed me to be more this year. I have some exciting goals I am hoping to set for myself in this New Year. And I cannot wait to share them with all of you! :)

Happy New Year everyone!!!

Friday, December 16

Free Christmas Mandala Colouring Page

Merry Christmas from Me to You!!

I hope you enjoy this free Christmas Mandala coloring page that I created just for all of you.
 To download, just click on the image to make it bigger, and then save it to your computer and print it out :)

Many Merry Christmas wishes to everyone :)

Sunday, December 11

DIY Burlap String Christmas Tree Card Display


Well, it's the beginning of the holidays, and a time for all things crafty! This is the time of year that the arts and craft stores hit the wallets of creative people all around the hardest. But, it doesn't have to be that way! Looking around your house for items that you already have and reusing them can make a big impact on your holiday displays without touching your wallet (very much, at least).

In our home, we always display the greeting cards that we receive from friends and family.  Every year, we try to display them differently. Some years are more creative than others. But, I think this year is the best so far!

This Christmas Card display is so easy to put together, and just too adorable. We have twine at our house from all my gardening, and what a better way to use it! What you will need:
  • Twine (or thin tinsel would be so pretty too)
  • Damage-free hanging hooks (I used about 10-12)
  • Clothespins
  • Tape 
  • Optional: light ornaments, and paint for the clothespins
That's all! All the rest, is just extra! So let's get started! You're going to first choose you wall. You will need a fair amount of space - but it depends on how many Christmas cards you are expecting. Once you have decided where, we create an outline with the string and some tape. This way, when you create your tree, the shape will be correct.

I choose a wall that we usually have two small paintings hung up on, so there are already two hooks that I could use (that's why my shape isn't a perfect triangle, but you will see in the end that doesn't matter). I just play around with the string until I'm happy with the shape and symmetry.


Next, we affix the damage-free hooks to the wall. You could also use push pins, but I didn't want that sort of damage on this wall. Just follow the directions on the package:



This product required me to stick all the sticker backs to the wall first, and then the hooks on top of them. So I went along my string on either side and "zig-zagged" the stickers of where I would want my hooks. You want to ensure that the stickers make good contact with the wall. I washed my wall first to make sure these won't fall off later when there is the weight of a bunch of cards.


And then I took down the string, and attached all the hooks to the stickers.


I know, it doesn't look like much now. But, it is time for this tree to take shape!

I tied a small slipknot into the beginning of my twine, and attached it to the top hook, leaving a little bit of twine. Then, working my way down, I would wrap the twine around each hook - stringing it back and work between then. When I got the bottom, I worked my way back up to the top. I then tied this to the little bit of twine we left and presto! We are done!


Folks: you have yourself a lovely twine Christmas tree!


I then proceeded to put clothespins all along the twine for when we get cards. Mine are painted in the Christmas colours red, green and white. And, using some of those clothes pins, I attached some glittery snowflake ornaments to dress up my tree while I await more cards in the mail :)


You could add any small ornament to your tree. Just make sure not to load it up with too many heavy items - when you start adding greeting cards, those will add some weight and you don't want the whole thing to topple down!

Happy Holidays and DIY-ing! :)