Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Christmas Advent Journal and Family Gingerbread Men

 I created the Skillshare Class, "Paint a Gingerbread Ornament with Personality" and wanted to incorporate the the theme in my Advent Journal for Christmas 2018. I wanted to include art and creativity along with family, and I was fortunate to have some helpers!
I sent a request to my sisters and sister-in-law and asked if they would have their children create their very own gingerbread man. Then, I requested that they take a photo of the artist, along with their gingerbread creation.

Ellie made an adorable gingerbread skateboarding Ellie! So fun.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Christmas Advent Journal and Family Gingerbread Men

 I created the Skillshare Class, "Paint a Gingerbread Ornament with Personality" and wanted to incorporate the the theme in my Advent Journal for Christmas 2018. I wanted to include art and creativity along with family, and I was fortunate to have some helpers!
I sent a request to my sisters and sister-in-law and asked if they would have their children create their very own gingerbread man. Then, I requested that they take a photo of the artist, along with their gingerbread creation.
My first volunteer was Claudia. She created a beautiful gingerbread ballerina. I am currently working on a layout for my journal and will post it when complete. Look at that clever version. Fantastic work, Claudia!

Sunday, December 09, 2018

Blessings

Blessings abounded this week. 
Jon and I returned from a fantastic weekend visiting with family.
The temperatures dropped in Florida this week and we had some unusually cool mornings. The skies were pink and red. It was a striking sight.
I had a great tennis lesson this week that was so rewarding. There are times when I seem to be more open to instructions and this was one of them! I wish I could bottle that ability!
Our ladies' tennis team had a bye this week, so a few of us got together to play a fun round robin and then go to lunch. It was a great day with great people.
I have been working on my latest Skillshare Class and was happy to publish it on Friday. Paint a Watercolor Penguin is ready to view.
Jon's mens team advanced to sectional play in Orlando. He and his partner had his first match on Saturday and played the best they ever played. It was great to see.
I started putting up Christmas decorations. I love listening to music and putting out the tree, ornaments, wreath, and garland.
Just a few more weeks until Christmas.

Thursday, December 06, 2018

New Skillshare Class: Watercolor Snowmen

My latest Skillshare Class, Watercolor Snowmen, is availble to view on Skillshare.com

Watercolor Snowmen
Snowmen are a popular winter theme and fun image for children and adults of all ages.  There are some unifying characteristics of all snowmen, but the variations are almost endless. This leads to a fantastic art challenge.
In today’s class, we will review traditional snowman characteristics and also create fun and modern takes on old Frosty.
Snow leads itself to interesting ways to create white in watercolor, as there is no white paint. We’ll learn ways to paint around the shape, to shade the snowman, and to use unexpected colors to create an effective and recognizable snowman.
Snowman Lessong include:
  • Traditional Snowman
  • Abstract Snowman
  • Modern Snowman
  • Deep Shadows Snowman
  • Snowman Looking Up
And a Bonus Lesson for a Kawaii inspired cute snowman!
This class includes a downloadable Supply List to help you get started, as well as downloadable templates to sketch snowman shapes. There is also a reference sheet for Snowman Elements.

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

Recipe: Pumpkin Madeleiines

For Thanksgiving this year, I made Pumpkin Madeleines.
Madeleines are a delicious cake like cookie. It's the perfect size for a couple of bites. There is a maple glaze drizzled over the cookies that are just a hint of sweetness.
It was my alternative to pumkpin pie.

Pumpkin Madeleines

1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
3 large eggs
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon vanilla

Glaze 
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 T maple syrup
2 tsp milk
1/8 tsp salt

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 
Spray two 12-shell madeleine pans with baking spray.
Melt the butter and cool.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves.
Mix the eggs and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix on medium-high until the mixture is light in color and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the pumpkin and vanilla extract and mix until combined.
Fold in the flour mixture. 
Gradually fold the cooled melted butter into the mixture.
Combine completely.
Fill the molds with batter, 1 tsp at a time. until they are almost completely full. Press the batter lightly to distribute it into the mold.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until puffed and golden brown. They should spring back when pressed with your finger.
Remove from oven and cool in pan for 5 min. Then remove from pan onto cooling rack.
Cool.
Drizzle with glaze.

To make glaze: combine powdered sugar, maple syrup, sugar, and salt. Add additional sugar if too loose, more milk if too thick.


Tuesday, December 04, 2018

Name that Christmas Carol!

My extended family recently gathered together to celebrate Christmas together. Because there are three generations living across the country, we try to meet up before the holiday rush and spend time together. We've been doing this for years and this way, we can all spend Christmas with our immediate family or friends.
I absolutely love it! I love seeing my family, catching up, and kicking off a month of celebrating.
This year, my brother and sister-in-law hosted the party at their home.
He found a really fun game that we played - all 14 of us!
Because we had so many people and ages (from 6 - 72) we formed three teams. Then, my brother distributed sheets of paper with lists of acronyms on them. He informed us of the rules, started the 15 min timer and WE WERE OFF!

We had to figure out the Christmas Carol by the acronym. For example, SN was, "Silent Night" and so forth.
It was a lot of fun and the timer was a big pressure bonus!
When the time was up, he gave the answers. We were all surprised that we missed so many seemingly obvious ones. But, it was tremendous fun.
Here's a link where you can print your own game, "Name that Christmas Carol" for your gathering, too.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

New Skillshare Class: Paint a Gingerbread Ornament with Personality

My latest class on Skillshare is how to Paint a Gingerbread Ornament with Personality. It's a fun class with lots of gingerbread characters - a pirate, panda, brown bear, sunbather, policeman, and many more!

Paint A Gingerbread Ornament With Personality
Using acrylic craft paints, this class demonstrates acrylic painting techniques involved in taking an unfinished gingerbread shape and transforming it into a stunning piece of art.
Students can use a wooden, paper mache, ceramic, or thick cardboard gingerbread shape. If one cannot be found, a rectangle or tag, or square shape of unfinished media can be used as well.
We will create sketches of many gingerbread personalities using the two downloadable Class Templates. Also, we will use original sketches in our art journals to create possible designs.
We will transfer our chosen designs to the unfinished shapes. Then, we will build up layers of colors, textures, and details to create varied personalities.
To make a gingerbread, we will include traditional elements that make them recognizable and festive. We will combine them with accessories and modern elements to add personality.
This class includes a downloadable Supply List to help you get started.