30 Jun 2011

"If only we'd stop trying to be happy, we'd have a pretty good time."
Edith Wharton

Well, I'm home from hospital. In fact, I had my op Saturday and came home Monday but I've been convalescing since then. Which basically means I've been hobbling about the house doing not much at all and lying on the bed reading books. The anaesthetic and the copious amounts of morphine pumped into my body made me feel like hell on Sunday but now I'm good to go. Well, ish. Things are good. I'm pleased. I'm grateful. I'm trying to stop myself from wanting more all the time, wanting to be better faster, right now. I should be over the moon with where I am right now, cos it's pretty awesome.

24 Jun 2011

Hello all,
I'm in hospital awaiting surgery so no decent posts till I escape!

22 Jun 2011

Reading makes your world big

I've been meaning to create a 'reading' print for Edie's room for a while now and I'm really happy with how this one turned out. It'll look so great in her room. I'm thinking of getting a bright coloured frame for it. Maybe turquoise or hot pink? She loves her books (which I'm over the moon about) and I'm so looking forward to us rediscovering all the books I fell in love with as a child together whilst also finding new ones to explore. She's got so much reading bliss to look forward to!
I adore making things for my little girl, it makes me so happy to see the way she loves looking at pictures and artwork, especially when she goes 'Wow...' like she's blown away by it. And yesterday, when I drew a pretty ropey picture of her face she gasped and said 'Oh, mummy, that's billant'. The best praise ever.
I hope to get the 'Reading' print up on my etsy asap. Hope you like it.

20 Jun 2011

Why you should get a dog, (and why you shouldn’t)

I’m mad about my dog. I mean SERIOUSLY, I’m really, honest to goodness, head over heels in love with her. As far as I’m concerned she’s the earthy embodiment of all things good and pure and she’s as damn near to perfect as a living creature could ever hope to be. Her name is Lola, she’s a black working-type cocker spaniel and she’s drop-dead gorgeous with silky ears, a velvety muzzle and the most soulful dark puppy eyes ever. I often think that she very much resembles Cheryl Cole (UK reference there, sorry). 

Who else, other than a dog, so consistently thinks you’re the best thing ever? In fact, you can be horribly grumpy, snap at them, shout “Out to the kitchen!’ in an evil voice and generally be a right meanie and they’ll still think you’re the bee knees. People who abuse this devotion and starve and harm their pets really are either in need of a stint in their local mental health out patients to talk over their childhoods or are simply scum. Plus, you can never go wrong with a dog, never be sort on things to say, never fear you’ve put your foot in it or offended them and they give you a level of companionship above and beyond that of any other animal and, to be honest, of most other people. Hanging out with a dog is very chilled, very undemanding and there’s no pressure to be funny or clever or attractive at all.

Whereas people need all kinds of complicated things to keep them well and happy a dog’s needs are simple. They need water, food, shelter, love and walks. These five simple things make them happy. If you consider the lists of things that other family members need to be happy then you’ll appreciate the fact that five is a very low number indeed. The relationship between a dog and its owner is a perfectly symbiotic one, we give them those five simple things and they give us unconditional adoration, affection and company.
I can't imagine how empty my house would be without Lola padding about, or how lonely I’d be without her head on my knee. Seriously. It doesn’t bear thinking about. My advice is, if there's someone home for most of the day and you can feed/ exercise/ love a dog even when you’re skint/tired/not in the mood, then what the hell are you waiting for? BUT… expect to find yourself walking in the rain, in the cold, in the snow for hours, expect to have to pass up on impromptu days out and weekends away because there’s no one to baby-sit your beloved pup, expect to pick up stinky poo on a daily basis and expect to fork out your clothing allowance on food, pet insurance and inoculation jabs. Still worth it? Hell yeah! I think so. I mean, look at this photo of her WEARING SUNGLASSES, doesn't it kill you?

17 Jun 2011

This print is one I did a few years back. It reminds me of a beautiful summer spent at festivals, the beach and generally having stupid amounts of fun. We have it propped up in our kitchen and it has a real feel good vibe. It makes that corner seem sunny whatever the weather. It's available in my etsy store.

It's been raining relentlessly here and summers like the one I was just talking about seem like mere folklore to me right now! I've got the heating on for goodness sake. How is that right for June?

15 Jun 2011

Brownies and body issues

No idea who's artwork this is, sorry.
I've been making chocolate brownies. I'm no master baker (that term always makes me snigger), in fact I'm a complete novice, but they are AWESOME. 
I got the recipe from Emily Martin's blog and it's good but equally importantly it's very, very easy. I had a toddler in the room 'helping' and it was still do-able. I ate about five (I know, I know, but they were on the small side) and then I felt... guilty. What is it with us girls and food? Then coincidentally I read Gala Darling's post on body image and blogging (specifically fashion blogging but I think it applies to anyone who puts themselves out there). It's true that most successful bloggers who post about their personal lives look a certain way. I suppose we like looking at attractive people but I do think that confidence has lots to do with it. Of course there are girls who are beautiful but not skinny and model-like who have a successful online presence but I reckon there are loads of girls who don't post pictures of themselves because they don't feel good enough. I had a blog previously to this one, before I had my little girl. I posted pictures of myself happily then, now I feel differently. I'm not entirely sure why but it's probably something to do with the fact that I'm not a (UK) size 8-10 anymore. I've had a problem with my back which has meant I can't exercise till I've had some surgery and that certainly hasn't helped with the way I feel about my butt right now. But girls, it's all about confidence and self esteem, that's the trick, that's where the magic is. Those girls look great not just because they're pretty but because they know how to rock it. I know I love the blogs of real girls who are just like me, real girls who do amazing things, wear kick-ass outfits, paint gorgeous pictures, have the sweetest families and generally live their lives like the superstars that they are. But saying it is one and thing and doing it another, finding a way to feel great about how we look and who we are, well that's the holy grail. Any ideas? (And oh my god, those brownies are so good.) 

13 Jun 2011

I haven't quite got this blog in hand yet. It's still very much under construction and I'm not at all sure of the directions I'd like it to take. I like the idea of having set days to blog certain things but my life is chaotic and it sometimes feels impossible to pin things down into a schedule. However, I really feel the need to keep at it, hoping it will take form organically. I can be a terrible over-thinker at times and too much planning equals not enough doing, right? The thing to do is to start, just to start wherever and keep going. It's way too easy to waste precious time planning and working out projects in your head and on paper but that gets you nowhere without action. So here's to getting up off your ass and making a start, it's the only way to get things done.

10 Jun 2011

It's been one of those days. The ones that really kick your ass. Problems, we all got 'em, but sometimes it's like they all get together to plan a ambush. Strength in numbers and all that. But silver linings, looking on the bright side and gratitude lists ahoy, let's focus on the good stuff. Even when the good stuff is tiny, teeny, minuscule, in fact, especially when the good stuff is tiny, teeny minuscule. So... small things that are good things (needs a catchier name I think, mmm...)
Clean bedsheets
Nothings beats the feeling of sinking into fresh, crisp and clean bedsheets. Sometimes it feels like such an effort to change the bedding but it's always worth it. Little luxuries like lush clean sheets always make life lovelier but especially so when your day has sucked. More to come later, I think. I'd like to make a list of small things that are good things, looking out for them must be an exercise in positivity itself.
PS The portrait at the top is one of my favorites. She makes me smile, I got a real soft soft for Petula. She's an acrylic on canvas rather than a watercolour which most of my posted portraits have been. Have a lovely weekend.


6 Jun 2011

Summer plans...

Got plans to paint some landscapes this summer. It's so hard to find the time and space to paint with Edie running around sticking her fingers in paint pots and adding her little colouring pencil designs to my work, but it's so worth it when I do find time! Recently I've been loving working on my little watercolour ladies but when I paint landscapes I usually work in acrylic. Really want to paint lots of summery, sunny scenes with fluffy clouds in a big blue sky.
I also want to build up my collection of kick-ass shades just like Edie!

2 Jun 2011



Another watercolour portrait- this sweet lady is called Devon. I love drawing and painting these girls, each one seems to develop her own personality as I'm working. It emerges as if by magic.