Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Nuance of Summer

What does summer mean to me?
For me, it is hiking in the woods where you can beat the heat under the shady canopy of trees.
It's cooling off by strolling along the creek looking for rocks to stack.
It's sitting on your balcony at night watching the lightening bugs display their own special light show.

Used the Tombow markers to color the trees on the stamp, then spritz with water for watercolor effect. I used a fan brush to add splatz of color with my watercolors.

Arches Water color paper – 140lb weight- cold press
Grumbacher Water Colors – Viridian Green
Helmar Craft & Hobby PVA Glue
Watercolor brush, fan brush
assorted card stock
Verses stamp – Good friends are like stars – FS1132G-CL
Tombow markers- 245,296,249 and Signo white pen
Stazon Ink
Spritz bottle

Monday, June 29, 2015

Sympathy card

I used the colors above in watercolors, the shell is done through The Crafters Workshop stencil. Hand stitched the ocean sea caps with some french knots.

Arches Watercolor paper – 140lb weight- cold press
Grumbacher Water Colors – Lemon Yellow, Cerulean Blue, Burnt Sienna
The Crafter's Workshop stencil – TCW500
Helmar Craft & Hobby PVA Glue
embroidery floss
font – Traveling Typewriter 16pt 

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Down by the Fairy Creek

My friend Catherine and I went to Bullington Gardens the other day to sketch and I got to talking to one of the gardeners there who studied creek conservancy. She was able to tell me not only the name of the creek but why it has silt in it. Evidently I will be dealing with silt for awhile due to the Britton Creek Stabilization that is happening up above me, yep I am getting all the run off from the work being done on it.

My set up...nothing better than dipping your feet in the cold mountain water on a hot summers day.

My steps down to the creek need some help but hey, the concrete blocks were free. So were the "tables" you see which are the broked off bases from planters that were in the junkyard. Hopefully they won't wash away when we get some heavy rain...will have to keep my eye on them.

I have been working to store up the edge of the banks with rocks, it might not be doing any good but at least it looks good, lol I'm also weeding and removing dead branches. I want to have lots of moss and ferns growing along the edge by next summer. This is also my exercise plan to go along with my dieting....so far I've lost 5 pounds this month. I figure it's a win-win situation...the creek and I will look better together, lol

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Americana art rocks

Most of you know my little garden and how much I love the outdoors so it will come as no surprise to you that I created some Patriotic Wind Socks to hang up in my garden for the 4th of July. You can just see them hanging up in the back of my gardem. Well, if you would like to see them better then please click on the link and go over to the DecoArts Project and Tutorial page (a great place for ideas and instructions) to view my Patriotic Windsocks. You can't leave a comment over there but you can share it on FB, twitter and Pinterest and I sure would love it if you found it in your creative hearts to do so. :)

Not true Americana art, but close enough is this card 
I am entering this card in Colourarte's Monthly Challenge #1

I used some Twinkling H2o's in Perewinkle to highlight the water and give it some sparkle.

Supplies used:
Luminarte Twinkling H20 – Periwinkle
Lawn Fawn stamp – Float My Boat LF654
Arches Water color paper – 140lb weight- cold press
Grumbacher Water Colors – Lemon Yellow, True Red, French Ultramarine (Light)
Helmar Craft & Hobby PVA Glue
Stazon Ink
Grafix Frisket

Friday, June 26, 2015

Sprinkling fairy dust

OK, between you and me, this has been one of the most fun projects I have done in awhile. I remember as a little girl I use to love to make miniature furniture for my troll dolls, oh, how I would have loved making fairy houses! I wish this trend had been around when I was a kid!!

I made lots of things, ladders, mushrooms, bird baths and a birdhouse, but I also enjoyed making these teeny tiny signs out of Grafix Shrink Film. this bright neon green was just the perfect accent for my woodland fairy garden, don't you agree? Shrinkfilm is just awesome, truly FUN at it's best!

Please stop over at the Helmar blog today to check it out all the other little things that go with it, and leave me a little sparkly comment while you're there, that makes me smile too!

Entering my Creek Fairy Lodge in Anything but a Card #48 challenge

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Not until October

And the last big event for me will be Oct. 24th, the same day they auction off Poppy Bear and it's all happening down at the same end of the street! Yay, for 2 events happening at the same location, lol

and yes, they spelled my name wrong....sighs
Now, how my name got from Sandy to Sandee.
It had to do with the TV show, "Flipper which portrays a 12-year-old boy (Sandy) living with his parents in the Florida Keys, who befriends an injured wild dolphin. The lad and his pet become inseparable, eventually overcoming the misgivings of his fisherman father." So I was only 6 or 7 when I learned that a boy's spelling of Sandy ended in a Y...from that point on I was bent on having a different name which in turn, drove my parents nuts. Eventually when I was 13 my mom "officially" changed it to Sandee. Thanks mom! ♥ My dad however, hated the change and still would write my name with a y...lol So I think I got my creative side from my mom and my stubborn streak from my dad!
back to the event...
I was curious as to which band I was going to paired up with, not that it reflects anything, but I do have to sit there and listen to it! Was hoping for some music and an age group I could relate to, lol I got both! I am not a BIG bluegrass fan, but I do like it. And it means it will be a slightly older crowd so I won't feel out of place.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015


I made the most scrumptious gift box with The Buckle Boutique self-adhesive rhinestone sheets! 

First I traced the box onto the back of the Dazzling Diamond adhesive sheet and cut it out with my scissors. Then I painted the inside of the box with DecoArt's Americana Multi-Surface Paint, and yes...I should have done this step first because I also discovered a small area along the bottom of the box that had the sheet pressed right up to it and knew I couldn't paint that edge without messing it up, so I used my Faber Castell PITT pen to color it in. I also used a Sharpie to outline the edges and smudge them to really make the box pop.

Now I get to embellish the top of the box! I added a flower and a sentiment using my favorite glues, Helmar! They make adhering products to the rhinestone sheets a snap!

The sentiment stamp come from Susan K. Weckesser-Jillian Vance design called Love Ya Whole Bunches.

I decided it needed something on the inside cover so I decoupaged a magazine image cut into a heart shape using Earth Safe Finishes Decoupage.

I just love how my little blingy box turned out!

They are so easy to use and so much fun if you want to give them a whirl they have some Sample Packs that you can try out. 

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

upcoming show Press release

 Press Release:   Art MoB Studios Studio Artists ExpoHendersonville – June 11, 2015On Saturday, July 25, Art MoB Studios and Market Place in downtown Hendersonville is inviting art lovers to experience our studio artists first hand at our inaugural Studio Artists Expo. TheExpo will be held from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. and will include demonstrations and talks by each artist. Visitors will have a chance to learn some of the artist’s secrets and see works evolve.
Art MoB’s studio artists have been creating unique works at Art MoB for three years since Art MoB opened in 2012. Recently, they have been busy knocking down walls and quickly filling up their expanded spaces with more one-of-a kind works. On any one day a visitor may find one or two of them at work, but not often, all four. Each of them are involved in exhibiting in regional and national fine art shows. They are all award winning artists who enjoy creating their work in an environment where visitors can observe and engage to learn more about their techniques.
One artist hand builds pottery vessels – coil by coil. Another paints primarily with her fingers. An acrylic painter first creates a sculpture on the canvas surface before even beginning a painting. A mixed media artist works bits of hand-made papers and unique objects into her often whimsical pieces. To have an “Expo” where visitor can see all four artists at work, plus a special exhibit of their work, was the idea of gallery owner Michele Sparks. Michele said, “Pinning down these four busy artists to agree on a date was quite challenging. But, I did it!” Each artist will demo and talk about their techniques and process at scheduled times.
Music, wine and hors d’oeuvres will be served.
The artists and schedules are:
Lucy Clark – Hand Built Pottery – 5:00 p.m. 
In addition to demonstrating her hand building method, Lucy will discuss how she embellishes and caves her surfaces, her firing process, and where she finds her inspiration.
Diane Dean – Representational/Abstract Acrylic Painting – 5:30 p.m.
The artist’s approach to creating an abstract textured surface will be demonstrated, plus Diane will show pieces in various stages of her painting process. She will also discuss materials and tools.
Sandee Setliff – Mixed Media Artist – 6:00 p.m.Sandee will show some of the secrets of how she pieces together her mixed media works. Her creative styles range from cute and fun to clean and simple. Paint and glue are always involved.Amy Perrier – Finger Painter – 6:30 p.m.
“No brushes!” Amy will exclaim as she demonstrates her “fingers only” technique for acrylic painting. She also will talk about the use of graphite and palette knives, plus what inspires her in her unique approach.
What: Studio Artists Expo
Where: Art MoB Studios and Marketplace, 124 4th Avenue East, downtown Hendersonville, NC
When: Saturday, July 25   4:00 p.m. – 7 p.m

Sharing my secrets? If it was truly a secret I wouldn't be sharing it, lol However, I will be discussing my decoupage canvas which I haven't named yet. I want to have most of it completed before doing a live hands-on demonstration...I really don't like working in front of people, I don't consider myself to be an entertainment artist. ( I admire people that are comfortable doing that!)

So here is the first step to my canvas. First I drew in the shapes and then outlined everything with DecoArt's Gloss Enamel Writers. I also used some paint and crackle medium to create some texture on the tree branch. I like to mix a little bit of paint along with collaging, and I am thinking of sewing some beads into the center of the flowers too.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Proper duck food etiquette

Sunday was peaceful, cool and relaxed down by the creek. I even got a visit from a lady Mallard, although she wasn't thrilled to be sharing the creek with me and decided to go back upstream after eye-balling me for a moment. 

I want to feed them so they will get use to me but I didn't have the "proper" food to give. Bread, crackers, popcorn etc. are bad for them and should not be offered. I know this and yet I have done it.
Bad, bad, bad me!

This is a list of the "proper" duck food:

  • Cracked corn
  • Wheat, barley or similar grains
  • Oats (uncooked; rolled or quick)
  • Rice (cooked or uncooked)
  • Milo
  • Birdseed (any type or mix)
  • Grapes (cut in half)
  • Frozen peas or corn (defrosted, no need to cook)
  • Earthworms
  • Mealworms (fresh or dried)
  • Chopped lettuce or other greens or salad mixes
  • Vegetable trimmings or peels (chopped)

And, of course, duck feed pellets or poultry starter pellets are another great option, and they can be purchased from farming or agricultural supply stores, but I don't need a large amount of feed since I really don't see them that often.

By knowing what to feed ducks as part of a nutritious and responsible diet, birders can enjoy this activity without inadvertently harming their favorite waterfowl.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Saturday morning and the P.I.G.

How did you spend your Saturday morning? Mine was spent walking in a creek and stacking rocks...I love how much cooler it is down by the creek, at least 5 degrees cooler. The water is chilly and that first initial step into the water can take your breath away, but you soon get use to it and enjoy how it lowers your body temperature on a hot summer day.

I discovered another new flower, not a native to our area but pretty all the same. It's called a Commelina communis or an Asiatic Dayflower. I researched this one on the internet and found out what it was called all by myself, lol

This lacy leafed bush (which towers 15' in my woods) is called a Northern Spicebush and it's leaves are aromatic, they smell like fruit loops when you crush them. Another specimen discovered with the help of the P.I.G.....lol....plant identification group.

 I love the plant identification group as they help so much in my walks in the woods. 

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Ebony Jewelwing

Sometimes I wonder if I am just seeing more of what around me (nature wise) because I am out in my garden and along the creek bed a lot lately. I don't remember seeing dragonflies damselflies before but I've been seeing them often in the last couple of weeks. I finally got a picture of one and came back inside to research and find out what it is. It's called an Ebony Jewelwing. I love the first sentence..."You first catch a glimpse of black wings that flit and flutter in the vegetation on the banks of a tranquil woodland stream."....Yep, my stream is very tranquil indeed!
 a common damselfly of eastern North America

"Damselflies, along with dragonflies, belong to the insect order Odonata. Damselflies are in the suborder Zygoptera and have two pairs of similar-shaped wings. When perched, they hold their wings, either closed or slightly spread, above their abdomens.  Dragonflies are in the suborder Anisoptera—their forewings and hindwings are of different shapes and, when perched, they hold their wings out flat or somewhat downward. Dragonflies are generally larger and are strong, fast fliers. Damselflies are dainty looking and are weak fliers."

Friday, June 19, 2015

Green Heron

I only have crappy pictures to show my latest and newest (to me anyway) bird.
I was so shocked to see him land less than 5 feet away from me (I was working on my Creel Fairy Lodge) that I couldn't get my camera ready fast enough and he didn't like me moving around to get my camera so he took off and landed a little ways down the creek, but I looked him up online when I got back inside and found out what he was! For me, it feels so surreal to see Herons in the creek...in the mountains! 

My hands were a little steadier by now, but he was intently moving away from me! 
I hope I see him again!

I love life by the creek!

Birding Life List:
1. Crow
2. Eastern Bluebird
3. Common Grackle
4. Red Belly Woodpecker
5. Mallard Duck
6. Downy Woodpecker
7. Ruby Throated Hummingbird
8. Green Heron

Thursday, June 18, 2015

The June Garden

This is the third picture in my garden series where I am taking a picture, once a month to record the changes. It also will help me in seeing what plants I need to buy for color for a particular month. I have new additions to the garden, a water fountain added by the apartment complex for me, a bench that is being slowly mossed that I found in a junk yard, and I rearranged the layout to allow people more access into the garden after discovering a woman walking through the flowers to check out the bench. 
The main flower blooming is the orange "ditch lily" or "roadside lily".
Planted astilbe, starting to bloom.
Seedlings of Zinnias coming up.
Primrose has begun to bloom.
Marigolds doing better on the west side of the garden, noticing more that the east side is considerably more shaded.
Weed, weed, and weed again is the motto for this month along with watering.

 May when the Blue Flag lilies were blooming, you can't see them very well because the color blue recedes into the landscape from a distance which is how I enjoy my garden for the most part. I need something to help the pop out more...maybe something yellow blooming. 

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Morning Glory lessons

I use to have a love/hate relationship with morning glories...with any vine for that matter until I learned and accepted a couple things.

1. I discovered that I am a wee bit very controlling. This Ephiny occurred back in 2001 when I grew a whole bunch of morning glories out on my backyard chain link fence. I realized I had a problem because I kept unwinding the vines and trying to make them go the way I wanted. I still have this problem, but I have learned to accept it and try not to have too many vines growing at one time so I am not pushing my sanity levels to the extreme. The morning glory below is just from one seed, hence I can unwind and rewind it nicely. Three times around the nest, thank you very much and now it has traveled up to the top where it will be wound (like I want) around the pot. :) In other words I didn't learn to control the "control freak" in me, just to accept at what level I can master it....lol

2. I learned the hard way that morning glories do NOT like to be fertilized. If you do, it will produce LOTS of green leaves with relatively no flowers. I discovered this back in 2002 when my neighbor and I decided to grow morning glories on our mailboxes. Not to be outdone, I fertilized the crap out of mine while she did nothing and mine was all green while she had bountiful blooms. I researched later to discover the no fertilizer theory with morning glories. However, it did set my pride back a notch or two, which was probably a good thing....smh....I am so bad when it comes to my flowers...trying to be a show-off, it bit me in the proverbial tush!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015


 It's a rare thing for me to be able to just sit down and do something fun...just for me.
So I wanted to make sure that it expressed how I feel.
Carefree and grateful basically sums it up.
I love Pooh's expression, he looks like he is a state of bliss, doesn't it?
Like he is skipping through the air with clouds under his feet. 

I began by gessoing my page first because I knew I was going to be using Faber Castell's gelatos as the base of my page and they just glide over a gesso'd page with a little water. Don't add too much water or they will slide right off the page too, lol I drew Pooh on a piece of text and colored him in with gelots also.

I used Faber Castell's gesso to color in the circles too, now it takes several coats if you do the gesso over the gelatos...or you can add a coat of varnish over the gelatos like I did to speed up the process. Faber Castell PITT pens were used to color in the letters.

Here is my journal laid open with my Wizard of Oz page on the opposite side. I do believe I am going back through my childhood visiting some of my favorite characters that I grew up with.

Yesterday is history.
Tommorow is a mystery.
Today is a gift.
That's why it's called the present.

Monday, June 15, 2015

It was ugly...I admit it!

Hi everyone, I am up today over on the Earth Safe Finishes blog. Now, this is the finished version (the red drainage tray) if you want to see my shame, lol...in other words the "before picture" then please go visit over there. It was rather pitiful, I had a cheap plastic tray which had cracked and I fixed it with duct tape! Oh yeah, that made it look like a man lived here!! THEN, a chipmunk or a squirrel had gotten into my birdhouse planter and dug out the dirt which was all mixed in with the pebbles that was in the old tray....can we say...an ugly mess? I was thrilled to get this huge tray from this neighbor who was moving out, it was the perfect size to replace the old, cracked, duct taped, dirt filled tray from before! HA!

And yes, I am hoping that the pinecones and the orchid will keep the little varmint out of the planter.....hopefully?

Sunday, June 14, 2015

scatterbrained is the word for the day

Well, to be more precise it was the word for yesterday...since I am writing this post today about yesterday...ahhh, the art of blogging! Anyway, I admit it, I am not the most well-centered person, there are days I need to adhere to my list...although I need a list to remind me to look at my list!

However, here I am down at the creek working on the largest damn fairy house on record. I am thinking it needs to be called a fairy lodge, dance hall or something along those lines. Yes, it isn't officially a cute tiny little fairy house....oh well...I just figures this one houses a whole lot of fairies...

So imagine, working on a project at the same time keeping an eye out for snakes slithering by or trying to keep the occasional ant from committing harikari by embedding themselves in the glue all the while artfully arranging moss and pinecones to the top of the roof...

And look! over there, isn't that a gorgeous iridescent black and blue dragonfly? I need a picture of that....but my hands are full of glue...sigh...yes, my mind wanders a bit....

Saturday, June 13, 2015

danger, danger!

This is a warning, Pinterest is a dangerous place! Not only will it suck your time right out of the day but it will cause you to create things like a mad man...things you didn't even know you wanted to make until you perused 5 million boards. 

Sooooooooo...I have this fairy board....and frankly I'm not into fairies, but I seem to be addicted to fairy houses. Miniature gardens. Building my own things out of twigs, moss and tiny charms. Currently I have glue and glitter on my fingers, because, evidently, fairies leave a trail of glitter everywhere!

I can even remember shaking my head and wondering...why would adults want to make a fairy house? I understand if they have children or grandchildren....man, I need me one of those so I can blame wanting to entertain the kids...but instead it seems that it is me that wants for entertaining....sigh.

So this is a picture of my "work table" out on my balcony where I have hummingbirds buzzing by to offer their words of wisdom ( after all they are fairies ) and squirrels peeping over the railing to check out my progress so they can see what toys I am going to leave them in the garden to play with and lots of song birds chattering away and talking about my silliness....cocking their little heads at me in amazement because all that moss and twigs would make for fine nesting material!

oh....don't I have a birdhouse button that I could glue onto a twig for their yard....brb.....

Friday, June 12, 2015

Butterflies and grasshoppers, oh my!

I love walking out into my garden and I always need to remember to bring my camera with me, sometimes to just capture a tiny grasshopper sunning himself on a spent daylily flower.

Or to chase around a Variegated Frittillary so that I can add him to my butterfly list. I'm buying milkweed seeds to add to my wildflower garden in the hopes of attracting more butterflies for the years to come. I'm glad I let wild violets grow in my woodland garden as that is one of the caterpillar hosts for them along with May Apple (one that I am wanting to add to the garden), Portulaca, stonecrop (Sedum), and moonseed. 

Variegated Frittillary - Euptoieta claudia

If I can get the proper butterfly ecosystem set up then I will need to start learning to identify caterpillars too!

Butterfly Life List:
1. Monarch
2. Pipevine Swallowtail
3. Silver Spotted Fritillary
4. Tiger Swallowtail
5. Black Swallowtail
6. Appalachian Azure
7. Silver Spotted Skipper
8. Variegated Frittillary

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Silver Spotted Skipper

This is a common little guy around here, I see him a lot. BUT, darn, he is hard to get a picture of since he is a nervous flitter..lol I did, however, manage to get a snapshot of him on some salvia. I'm glad to finally know his name.

Silver-spotted Skipper (Epargyreus clarus)

 "Silver-spotted Skipper is one of our most common and familiar butterflies, particularly abundant in the mountains. They are somewhat misnamed since the spot is white, not silver."

Butterfly Life List:
1. Monarch
2. Pipevine Swallowtail
3. Silver Spotted Fritillary
4. Tiger Swallowtail
5. Black Swallowtail
6.Appalachian Azure
7. Silver Spotted Skipper

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Hummingbird Bling

All new customers receive a coupon code for 15% off their first purchase.  The details are:
* Discount is in the form of a coupon code that will be e-mailed to the newly registered customers. Then it is to be applied at check out. Coupon code is valid through June 15, 2015 only. Discount can not be combined with any other offer, is limited to in stock merchandise only and is not valid on custom, special or previous orders.
To register as a new customer simply fill out the information HERE.  Your coupon code will be emailed to you and you can begin shopping for everything to add sparkle to your world!  Buckles, pins, slides, glitter vinyl and rhinestone sticker sheets.
Hurry . . . this deal ends June 15th, 2015
Oh my gosh, I just love my latest project, and I can tell you one thing, it took me longer to snag this picture than it did embellishing my feeder! I truly adore the peel and stick bling, it makes additions like this so easy and fast!! And what adorable little Hummer doesn't deserve his own blingy feeder?

First I washed and thoroughly dried the top to the feeder. Then I cut the width by 2 rows on the Red Dazzling Diamond Self Adhesive Sticker Sheet and then peel the backing off and apply it to the feeder. I didn't have enough to make one strip go all the way around by itself, but because of the way the rhinestone sheets are made they butt right up to each other and you cannot tell where I stopped and started back up! 

Next, let's talk about some Hummingbird safety. Do NOT put anything with adhesive anywhere near to where their tiny little feet will be. You do NOT want to risk them becoming stuck to your feeder, that would be horrible, which is why I placed my bling on the rim, nowhere near his little perch.

Next, let's discuss bling safety, lol I would not recommend placing the top where the bling is inside the dishwasher. I recommend washing the top by hand.

My friend Becky shared some Hummingbird facts with me and I thought all you lovers of Hummers might enjoy reading them too:
  • Hummingbirds have tongues that are grooved like the shape of a "W".
  • Hummingbirds have tiny hairs on the tips of their tongues to help them lap up nectar… similar to a cat.
  • A hummingbird's bill is longer in proportion to its body, as compared to other birds.
  • Hummingbirds have no sense of smell, but can hear better than humans.
  • Hummingbirds
  • Hummingbirds are attracted to all bright colors, although red is most prominently associated with these tiny birds.
  • Hummingbirds see in ultraviolet light and they can see further than a human.
  • Hummingbirds have a great memory – they remember every flower & feeder they've been to, and how long it will take a flower to refill.
  • The hummingbird brain is 4.2% of its body weight – this is the largest, in proportion, of the wild bird group.
  • Hummingbirds are the only birds that can fly like a helicopter… up, down, sideways, front, and back!
  • Hummingbirds are the second largest family of birds with a total of 332 species.
  • Hummingbirds have weak feet – they mainly use them just for perching.
  • When food is scarce and they are fatigued, hummingbirds go into a hibernation-like state (also known as torpor) to conserve energy.
  • A hummingbird's heart beats up to 1,260 times per minute.
  • Hummingbirds do not mate for life.
  • A baby hummingbird is roughly the size of a penny and is unable to fly.
  • The average life span of a hummingbird is 5 years, but they have been known to live for more than 10.
  • Hummingbirds fly at an average of 25-30 miles per hour, and are able to dive up to 50 miles per hour.
  • Some hummingbirds will travel over 2,000 miles twice a year during their migration.
And with these pictures I can add the Hummingbird to my 
Birding Life List:
1. Crow
2. Eastern Bluebird
3. Common Grackle
4. Red Belly Woodpecker
5. Mallard Duck
6. Downy Woodpecker
7. Ruby Throated Hummingbird

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