Sunday, August 18, 2019


“Gratitude is when memory is stored in the heart and not in the mind.” – Lionel Hampton

When life gets busy, messy, and tough, I can struggle to be happy. I still count my blessings, but I become so distracted with "the bad stuff" that my moments of miracles don't resonate for me, easily. I have to work to make the feelings of gratitude be a dominant part of my day.
I can get bogged down in feelings of negativity and I am aware of that, so I know that is something I work on. To make me feel, to appreciate feeling grateful, I try to will myself out of my negative thoughts and re-emphasize the espisodes of grattitude that I feel. Sometimes I have to do this a dozen times to train my brain to focus on the positive.
It's work for me. 
But, I am grateful for these moments of self awareness, even if I struggle to achieve it.

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Skillshare Class for Summer 2019: Watercolor Popsicles

Watercolor Popsicles is my latest class on Skillshare. Create six mouthwatering popsicles in brilliant colors in this extensive watercolor class. Practice creating highlights and shading in wet layers and add details in additional layers. Pactice shading, glazing, creating gradients, and lifting pigments, as well as making variations in color.
Lessons are demonstrated for 6 popsicles. Each popsicle is broken down into multiple lessons, based on layers, as a way to achieve bold and achievable results.
Included is a downloadable Class Template for sketching the six popsicles. I briefly demonstrate an example of modifying the template, as well.
Then, using various techniques, we’ll paint the popsicles using fun methods to create:
  • Popsicle #1: Dual Popsicle
  • Popsicle #2  Classic Popsicle
  • Popsicle #3  Watermelon Popsicle
  • Popsicle #4 Twin Popsicle
  • Popsicle #5: Fudge-sicle Popsicle
  • Popsicle #6: Twist Popsicle
The class is designed for Advanced Beginners and each of the Popsicles are stand alone lessons, so you can select one or all of the popsicles to paint. 

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Skillshare Class: Gel Printed Paper: Collage Unicorn Cake

As Unicorn Cakes are some of the hottest trending cakes, I posted a class using the beauty and whumsical nature of the unicorn cake, but made from paper, not frosting and cake!

The Collage Unicorn Cake is a fun class Create a fun and magical collaged portrait of a unicorn cake complete with rainbow hued frosting roses, golden horn, and colorful mane. Follow along as we go step by step to create a striking and unusual collaged work.
Using gel printed pages, we'll emphasize the variations in colors and patterns of this unique painted paper. Patterned paper can also be used. This class does not teach gel printing techniques, instead focuses on using already made gel prints.
You may be interested in other Collage Classes, including my Gel Printed Collage Birds Class.


This week has been full of blessings.
We're in the dog days of summer and are having lots of hot weather, lots of thunderstorms, and lots of humidity.
One of my tennis friends turned 70, so a dozen of us surprised her with a dinner. I made some cupcakes and we had a fun night.
Jon and I celebrated our wedding anniversary this week. It was a very hot day, just like it was years ago.

Last week, I posted a Collage Class using Gel Printed Paper to make a Collaged Unicorn Cake
And this week, I posted a new painting class Watercolor Popsicles.
I'm taking a short break from tennis and doing TRX suspension training for my exercise. I'm enjoying the break.

Sunday, July 14, 2019


“Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. 
Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness. 
Thankfulness may consist merely of words. Gratitude is shown in acts.” 
– Henri Frederic Amiel

This week has been full of blessings. I am taking a short break and will be back next week.

Tuesday, July 09, 2019

The Psychology of Nicknames

Nicknames are an interesting phenomenon. We're all given names upon birth, formal names that donned on us by our parents. But, nicknames, are names that can be given to us by ourselves, our family, and our friends.
 "J-Lo", the nickname for singer/actress Jennifer Lopez, is a shortened version of her name given to her by the media. And while professional athletes and celebrities have been given monikers by the press to bring attention and notoriety to a famous person, nicknames given by friends and family are given for more personal, intimate reasons.
Nicknames can be as simple as truncating a long name - from Robert to Rob.
They can be shortened, but slightly different versions of a given name - Richard becomes Dick.
Nicknames can be descriptions - calling a youngster "Junior" or "Red" based on haircolor.
They can also be humorous, like, calling a tall man, "Stretch".
But, they can also have seemingly nothing to do with the person. In this case, a nickname is given as a term of endearment and affection.
My given name is Daniela Elizabeth. My first nickname was Danny Beth. Then, my favorite nickname was "Lala", as my sisters had a hard time pronouncing Dan-iel-a. My husband called me "Lal" for short, which also means beloved. Then, I became Momma. And finally, Dani.
My daughters have had many nicknames. We've called them everything from their given names, to shortened versions, to names unrelated. Our daughter Allie, was called Charlie, Lou, among other things. Her sister had her own nicknames for her as well.
Our daugher Ashley, was called Roo, Rooey, Mozzarella, as well as other things.
And nicknames also extended to our pets as well. Through the years, we've had many cats, but the first cat that our daughter's named, was donned Kasia upon adoption. Within a few days, she was known as Kasia Nikita Tanney or sometimes, Kas.
In these cases, nicknames are names given to us by those who care for us, almost a renaming in their eyes. It's a way that someone makes an effort to don us with names that they'd like to call us, to make a personal connection, and to let us know that we are on their mind.

Monday, July 08, 2019

Journal Embellishments: Page Edges Class on Skillshare

Journal Embellishment: Page Edges is my newest Skillshare class. 
Add creative elements to your journal pages by decorating page edges. In this class, we’ll go over three techniques using papers, scissors, and glue to design borders that are creative and colorful. Use simple tools and supplies to add interest to your pages in journals, altered books, and handmade books.
This class is intended for beginner paper artists and reviews design skills, color combinations, and using patterned paper as an inspiration photo.
The chapters in this class include:
  • Class Supplies
  • Selecting Papers
  • Page Edge Design #1
  • Adding Details to Design #1
  • Adhering the Page Edge Design #1
  • Trimming the Page Edge Design #1
  • Page Edge Design #2
  • Adhering the Strips to Page Edge Design #2
  • Trimming the Page Edge Design #2
  • Page Edge Design #3
  • Design #3 Second Layer
Use existing journals, notebooks, junk journals, or altered books. You can also use journals from my classes Expanding JournalsMixed Media Color JournalRecylced Materical Cover Stab Binding, or Watercolor Petroglyph Journal 

Sunday, July 07, 2019


This week has been full of blessings.
Our eldest daughter joined us for the 4th of July. It was great to see her and catch up.
Despite our town's annual firework display being canceled at the last moment, we were able to see TONS of fireworks thanks to enthusiatic revelers. 
I purchased a sewing machine this week and got to use it. I am so happy. Can't wait to try new techniques and some old ones!
My extended family celebrated the 4th with their families and friends. I love to see pics of red, white, and blue, along with smiles, and summer fun.
I posted my latest class this week on Skillshare: Journal Embellishments: Page Edges, It's a beginning level class for adding decorative edge to journals, altered books or junk journals.