Monday, September 22, 2014

Finished a doodley one

Home Playing!

I am off today, so I am playing around with a live oak tree mask that I hand cut last night out of a thin piece of plastic I saved from some package or another.

I have a whole container of sheets of plastic and cardboard packaging just for this purpose.  Sometimes I use a hot knife to cut plastic, but this one was thin enough to just fancy cut with scissors. 

The idea was to try to recreate the oak tree stencil I cut out of a piece of paper when I was gelli printing with my friend's kids up in Virginia.  Elizabeth, quite the artist herself, created this amazing gelli print using it and I doodled on it.  It is still one of my favorite pieces so far.

I am printing on top of some old gelli prints. I still haven't figured out exactly how Elizabeth achieved the original print, but I am LOVING my experiments so far!  I can't wait to doodle on some of these!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Beach at Sunset

Today we took Jasmine to the beach for a walk.  It was the first time since we lost Greta.  Now I hate to admit it, but we almost never took Greta and Jasmine to the beach.  Maybe twice in the 3 and a half years we have lived here.  A couple of reasons:

A> Greta was starting to get wobbly (spinal spondylosis) and the sand was really hard for her to walk in, and
B> SAND + FUR, and
C> Greta was the fun police and made it known to everyone in range that she was NOT HAPPY ABOUT ALL THE FUN, and,

But today was a really beautiful day.  Starting to cool off, no bugs, very nice breeze.  So we grabbed Jasmine's THUNDER HARNESS and two long leads and set off.

I have to say that it is sort of super weird to only have one dog - especially this one. Things are so QUIET.  Yes, she likes to be loved on and petted but she isn't vocal at all (with the exception of the DINO barks, which is another story).  We are having to adjust. In some ways I feel like I'm just now getting to KNOW Jasmine.  Believe me she has not been neglected in any way, shape or form for the last 4 years, but I guess she was just in the background behind the DOMINANT PRESENCE of Greta more than we realized.

Now is her turn to shine.

So we went to the beach, and it was ...........

Calm.  Peaceful, even.  She wandered around, checked things out, looked at all the kids playing...

She didn't bark.  She didn't charge forward.  She didn't whip out her ticket book and start issuing citations to every toddler for having too much FUN.  Jason and I were able to sit on the beach, talk, and watch the water.

PLEASE don't get me wrong, I miss my Greta desperately, loved her with all my heart, and wouldn't have traded her for anything.  And YES, I realize her behavior was a PARENTAL problem and we didn't train her properly and blah blah blah.  I know, I KNOW. (although I would like to note that some of her liter mates were on doggie anti-anxiety meds so maybe it wasn't ALL us...)


Jasmine just came to us like this. Calm.  Fully grown, we think she was 3 or 4, so 7 or 8 now, and she's just different than our Greta was.  More content.  More secure?

We got home and put her in the backyard to hose her down, and realized she wasn't even sandy!  The sand apparently doesn't cling to her like it did with Greta. Jasmine's coat is definitely softer, so that's interesting.

Jason and I have been married 16 years and we've never been a one-pet family.  We've had as many as three dogs at a time.  This is a big change for us, but I think we are going to enjoy it for awhile.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Pens, Pens, and more Pens

So...I have a lot of pens. Shocked? Likely not. The topic of pen storage came up in one of the facebook groups I'm in (Zentangle®) today, so I thought I'd jump in.

Since I really got into drawing about a year ago now (wow! a year?!), I have tried a few different storage ideas and found the following:

1> I hate not having all my pens with me at all times, (well not ALL my pens - I have backups and duplicates, but I don't carry more than one of the same thing unless I think something may run out, and not ALL the time, although my friends may argue about that...),  and
2> I DOUBLE HATE digging through multiple boxes/ bags to find the pen I want or to see all my choices.

Here's my current set-up.

This little bag (the zebra bag) holds tall pens, all my black and white pens, and all my metallic pens except Gelly Rolls. The plastic container in the middle holds my super-fancy itty bitty pens (or as Shannon Green says...."using these are like writin' with an eyelash!"), and I also have a few water brushes stuck in here.  I don't mind having the itty-bitties (mostly Pilot Hi-Tec C Maica 0.3) in their own container because I don't use them often and when I do, I am generally focused on final, very fine details.

The bag still has plenty room in it for more stuff...

(as does this paragragh....)

The zebra bag happens to fit perfectly inside this green bag, which is holding all my sharpies, my FC Pitt pens, Gelly Rolls, and "regular writing" pens - well that's what I call them anyway. I use them all the time for writing in my planner and anything else. They are mostly Pilot 07's, with a few Zebra Sarasa's thrown in.  There is a Sarasa limey-green color I especially love.  

This is what is looks like all put together.  This whole bag fits perfectly inside two other bags I have (one simple tote, and one big complicated backpack), in case I want to take them somewhere but want them fully contained.  In fact, on my recent 5 week trip to D.C. for work, I put the zebra bag inside the green bag inside the tote to contain any potential leaks (the tote is plastic), and then put the tote inside the backpack which I was carrying on the plane. Arrived with all pens intact and in their proper assigned location with no fallout or migration (I have no tolerance for pen migration.  Gelly Roll Stardusts should not be mingling with microns should not be mingling with pilots, know what I mean?).  I was quite pleased.  

When I'm actually working, I can see everything in front of me.  I like that.  I read and worried about the whole "store horizontal vs. store vertical" debate, but so far I haven't had any issues so I'm pretending I don't know any better.  
Just LOOKING at this pen bag makes me happy.  Oh, the potential it holds!!!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Gelli Addiction

I added the "ADDICTED TO GELLI" button to my blog (it's over on the right - check it out) because it's true.  I'm totally addicted and CANNOT STOP.  It is SO FUN.  Since I started mere months ago, I have taken to wearing nothing but worn out paint clothes around the house just so I can GELLI whenever the mood strikes.

I started with the 8x10 plate and a handful of awesome stencils and made things like:

Then I decided oooooh!  I can use other art I have made to cut my own stencils!  I cut one of my baby girl, Greta, and started making these:

Then my Mom got me the BIG Gelli Plate for my birthday and I discovered deli paper and OH MY!!!!

And NOW I have discovered that I can use up these STACKS of papers in collages!  

The addiction is bad.  Well I say bad, but I suppose it's way better than a crack addiction, right?  I have given away somewhere around 100 prints which makes me very happy, plus I'm single-handedly keeping the acrylic paint, stencil, pen, paper, and Gelli Arts industries in business.  (Did I mention I just bought myself a new 8x10 Gelli Plate and cut up my old one so I could make block printed backgrounds using the old pieces as stamps?)

If you want to see more Gellis, there are TONS on the interwebs, including TONS of awesome videos. Check out Patti Tolley Parrish on YouTube.  I LOVE her videos, plus she has her own line of stencils (many of which are featured in my own prints) at   Pretty much everything I know, I learned from her :)  Her website is

I posted a lot more of my prints on my new Facebook page (it's public, you don't have to have a facebook account to see it):  Sonyagraphsart  So check it out and let me know what you like!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

My Friends Crack Me Up, Episode #497


Andree's latest FACEBOOK post:
Things that will end badly: Ben is drilling a hole in the laptop to remove a stuck screw so I can replace the screen that Zachary cracked by closing the laptop on some earbuds.

Lisa:   Sounds like a Monty Python sketch

Jason G:   You should be filming this.

Andree: I don't remember there being so much cursing in Monty Python. Also, the drilling seems to have worked okayish. Also the part where I decided that where the manual said, "Remove" really meant "Pry apart with a butter knife."

Danny: "Hello Best Buy ? You are not going to believe this!"

Dale: Andree... make a footnote in the manual: "Keep butterknife handy to pry window facings off in case of stuck weights. Use fork to remove nails before hammering flush with roller skates."

Andree: That's one way to do it, Dale. We go with "Don't open windows."

Angelle: So glad I'm not the only one.

Dale: Andree... there was no choice. We no longer own a key to our own house and some maniac locked the door!

Andree: When I was little and we got locked out, my parents would pry one of the window panes in the front door and stick my sister through to go unlock the back door. The window panes are about 5" X 7". I'm not sure how she fit.

Sonya: Y'all are killing me LOLOOOL.

Andree: The drilling didn't hurt anything. But it turns out the lenovo manual was wrong - I didn't need to take the whole thing apart to get the screen off. Oh well, the fan's clean now and the laptop's a lot lighter since I have a few dozen screws left over.

Heartbroken Silence

Working at home for the first time since we lost our Blueberry Pancake (aka Greta). It's quiet. I pretty much hate it. This is what I SHOULD see when I look out my office door.