Happy Thanksgiving!

Watch this Thanksgiving scene oil painting come to life in 3 minutes (time lapse)

This has been a wonderful day. I’ll tell you all about it tomorrow. I’m sleepy and will soon go to bed. If you celebrate this holiday, I hope you had a joyous day. And even if today was a regular day for you, peace and good wishes to everyone.

Thanksgiving Eve

Watch this oil painting come to life in just over 1 minute (time lapse)

This painting is of a peach pie, but today my firstborn daughter baked a pumpkin pie for tomorrow. I baked ahead the homemade macaroni and cheese. My youngest daughter made a green bean casserole. The two hot dishes will be on a heating & warming tray tomorrow. In the morning I’ll prepare and roast the turkey. We’ll have a flurry of activity in the kitchen when it’s time for making all of the other parts of the feast: stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, vegetables, yams (I don’t count them as vegetables and I won’t eat any, I don’t like yams) and heating the french bread my husband baked. My son will open a can of cranberry sauce and slice it. I won’t eat that stuff either, but he sure will.

I put matching turkey and harvest themed tablecloths on the tables, finished making festive potholders, and washed the pretty new holiday apron my daughter gave me. I’m ready! I’ll be up very early to finish thawing the turkey, going outside to cut the fresh parsley and rosemary to stuff the turkey, as well as a lemon, orange, onion, and apple. This is a new variation I’m trying, based on tips I found online. I like to try new ways to prepare the turkey. Every year it seems to be “the best turkey ever!”

I wish you all a happy day tomorrow, and those of you who celebrate this holiday, may you have a joyous Thanksgiving!

Going Fast

See oil painting “Autumn Leaves” come alive in 2 minutes (time lapse)

You might remember when I shared this painting in September, and now nearly two months have passed by. Autumn is going fast. Didn’t it feel like such as short time ago when summer ended? But here we are, and the holiday season is soon upon us.

My Christmas show is coming along. I hope that you will enjoy it and share it far and wide. We need as much joy as we can get! Well, that’s all for tonight. I had a busy Monday, did you? I’m tired. Good night, dear friends.


How are you?

Watch this oil painting of a bird in a forest come to life

in about 2 minutes (time lapse)

You might remember when I first shared this painting when I finished it in April? Here we are, five months later, and I’m guessing you are feeling a lot of the same emotions that I am. When spring came upon us, I felt hopeful that the change of seasons would bring positive developments along with the blooming trees and sunny skies. Then we slipped into summer, and my optimism waned. Now we are entering autumn. With fall leaves changing, soon we’ll be hibernating again in a deadened world of shorter days, longer darkness, bare trees, and the emotions that come with the reflections and reminiscing that ring in the holiday season.

I don’t have extended family who visits, nor do I visit anyone, but I enjoy the time I spend with my own little family (my husband and kids). I’ve shopped early this year and their presents are already stashed away, long before Christmas. I want to make sure that we can celebrate so brightly that our happiness and gratefulness outshines anything dark that may be upon us in December. I’m also investing in new baking projects and food ideas, party plans (even though it’s just us, we are a party!), and of course the big holiday show that I’ll be sharing with all of you. I want to encourage you to think ahead about how you want to spend your holiday season and prepare for it in a way that is bigger and brighter than you’ve ever done before, even if it’s just you alone.

I will be here with you, same as always. I am committed to blogging every day. So even if it seems that “no one” is around, someone always is. Stay strong, stay positive, and plan for happiness.

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LOL, Irishness

Today I tried a new recipe (not the peach cookies in my painting video). These also had powdered sugar on them, but I screwed that

Keeping my Cool

I felt a bit of panic, but I willed myself to keep my cool, as cool as this puffin. Today I was working on the

Do you See what I See?

After we moved to Georgia, we visited the same beach on Tybee Island several times. It became our favorite place. One day this graffiti was

Memory Lane

The current White House Christmas decorating theme was released this week, and I was reminded of the 2018 event that I was inspired to paint

Christmas Star and Curry

This art of Mary and baby Jesus features the Christmas Star, which was visible in some parts of the world the year I painted this

Sneak Peek

I’m still enjoying the holiday weekend, but this morning I was by myself while the family slept in, so I had time to dabble with

Holiday Break

Our house is already changing from pumpkin spices to gingerbread. Today we decorated the Christmas tree and made cookies. Yesterday for Thanksgiving we had a

Happy Thanksgiving!

This has been a wonderful day. I’ll tell you all about it tomorrow. I’m sleepy and will soon go to bed. If you celebrate this

Feasting

Watch oil painting “We Gather Together” come alive in about 1 minute (time lapse)

Inspired by my family… that’s me in the red and my husband across from me. Our son in the green, and our two girls nearest to you. Of course this doesn’t look like us exactly, and is out of proportion and perspective, but it captures the warmth and love I feel when I cook for my family. The candlesticks are inspired by real ones I have that were my parents. Dad brought them back from the war and Mom would save them for “good”, which means that she didn’t actually use them. Both my parents died young. I have decided never to save anything for good. Every day that I am alive is a good day.

I spent today cooking up a feast for my family. The plan was to cook up a variety of meats and then use those in different recipes. A full day of cooking and baking that will provide meals for the week ahead. So, I made three dishes from sausage: an egg, red pepper, and sausage scramble for eating inside warm tortillas, a baked pasta dish, and as topping on a homemade pizza. I made three dishes from ground beef: meatballs with egg noodles and gravy, a second topping for the pizza, and part of a second baked pasta dish. And so on. I made cookies also, thumbprint sugar cookies with jam baked in.

The pizza was absurd! It was so heavy because I crammed it with enough toppings to be a meal all by itself: fresh mushrooms, red bell pepper, chopped sweet onion, sliced red onion, sausage, seasoned ground beef, ham, bacon, pepperoni, fresh mushrooms, tomato sauce mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. All of that on a hefty thick homemade yeast crust.

Cooking in a large batch like this can save time and money because each single package of meat was stretched into three or more meals. I plan to start my next painting tomorrow and I won’t have to set aside time to cook. My kids often cook for themselves, but that ties up the kitchen and makes a lot of noise behind my head. My “studio” is just the back wall of the kitchen.

So, there are practical reasons to occasionally take a day for cooking multiple meals ahead, but… the best reason is that the day of cooking means that all of these meals are fresh from the oven at once, like a giant feast. When my family walked in the door after a long day, much of it spent in heavy rains, they were happy to walk into a kitchen bursting with food. They said it smelled like a pizzeria in here.

Holiday times are a wonderful escape. Feasting with family and friends can feel like nothing else matters, and the stress of our lives is far away. Every now and then an ordinary day comes along, and there’s no holiday in sight, and it’s too long to wait for a season that’s months in coming. Why wait for the right time? Why wait for permission, convention, or a date on the calendar? The only day that matters is today.

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LOL, Irishness

Today I tried a new recipe (not the peach cookies in my painting video). These also had powdered sugar on them, but I screwed that

Read More »

Memory Lane

The current White House Christmas decorating theme was released this week, and I was reminded of the 2018 event that I was inspired to paint

Read More »

Sneak Peek

I’m still enjoying the holiday weekend, but this morning I was by myself while the family slept in, so I had time to dabble with

Read More »

Holiday Break

Our house is already changing from pumpkin spices to gingerbread. Today we decorated the Christmas tree and made cookies. Yesterday for Thanksgiving we had a

Read More »

Thanksgiving Eve

This painting is of a peach pie, but today my firstborn daughter baked a pumpkin pie for tomorrow. I baked ahead the homemade macaroni and

Read More »

Happy Anyway

I struggled to think of what to say for today’s blog post. World events paint a bleak, angry, and fearful picture. What popped into my

Read More »

Praying in a Dark World

Sometimes tragic events unfold and there’s nothing we can do but pray. Tonight something heartbreaking has happened in America involving a horrific attack via vehicle

Read More »

The Unexplained

I explained the story behind this mysterious encounter with a wild rabbit on the “Visiting Rabbit” page. This week there have been some serendipitous events,

Read More »

Going Fast

You might remember when I shared this painting in September, and now nearly two months have passed by. Autumn is going fast. Didn’t it feel

Read More »

New Painting

This is the painting I finished yesterday. Thanksgiving is coming up fast. Beyond a special meal that features a roast turkey, those of us who

Read More »

When Lions Fly

I last shared this art in a blog post called “Guardians“, which was about protectors and believing in spiritual protection. That’s a big idea sort

Read More »

New Painting – “Americana”

Watch me paint “Americana” in 2 minutes (time lapse)

This is the painting featured in my 4th of July show. If you haven’t already seen my variety show with family members as guest stars (dancing, singing, and included in the photography slideshow in the first half), here it is: 

I hope that you enjoyed my holiday variety painting show. The next show will be in November. I’m already preparing for it and have ordered my next dress!

Now that the July show is over, I’ll be back to my regular schedule of painting. There are 6 paintings left for the “50 Oil Paintings Inspired by Nature” collection. Thank you to all who are sharing this journey with me, toward my lifetime goal of one THOUSAND finished oil paintings!

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