Saturday, April 28, 2012


I've discovered that I possibly do more shopping than painting when I'm in an artsy mood. I did a quick inventory check and discovered that I'm well stocked.


In my defense, I like to have options. Also, because I'm not a hardcore artist, I don't make my own canvases. (Shame.) Thus, I need to stock up when I either see things on sale, or I happen to wander into a store with a 40% off coupon.

Today I am resolving to do less shopping, more doing. Plus, my craft room/art studio is starting to get cluttered.

Yes, the ruler IS necessary


Thursday, April 26, 2012

Herban Garden

We had some intense rain this past weekend. It just so happened that said rain downpoured shortly after we had just transplanted our seedlings to the garden. We were nervous for our seedlings. They are not very big. And they look fragile. But turns out they are surprisingly resilient.

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Green bean sprout

We are coming up on a week later, and everything still looks alive. Hooray!

To celebrate my blossoming green thumb I decided to make some herb labels for the potted herb garden. My seed packet labels (shown here) got drenched, soggy, and not pretty. Turns out I've had a packet of small wooden garden stakes sitting in my craft room since last year. Keeping things simple, I painted them white and labeled with my trusty patio paint.

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I was going to spray on a quick coat of sealer for added protection but quickly got lazy. The stakes cost me probably about a $1 plus change, so the less time spent on this little project the better. Frankly, I won't mind if they only last me one season.

I'm all about function, and they have one job.

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Confession: that mint plant was the one plant we bought this year. That's why it looks so hearty next to the small sprouts of basil. It's a crazy variety of mint: orange mint! We haven't tried it yet, but I'm pretty excited about it.

Sunday, April 22, 2012


My brother has been playing baseball every since he was little. We like to tease him about how he used to practice his Power Ranger moves while playing the outfield during his tee ball years. I haven't actually watched him play in a long time, but I like to imagine that, at twenty-three, he still does this.
  (Hi, little brother! <waves enthusiastically>) Moving on...

Now that he plays in an adult softball league he asked me to try and dream up a logo for the team. I've never really designed a logo before, but thought I could give it a try. The team name is Moneyball. 
So here we have it.


I was inspired by those images you see of a thrown baseball with a trail of flames. If you Google "baseball with fire" you'll see what I mean. I also downloaded a free baseball font to help me. You can download that here. Overlaying the 100-dollar bill onto the baseball was a bit more complicated. But it involved watching this very informative YouTube video a few times.

Still waiting for tshirts to be printed and really hoping they turn out okay.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Maryland-themed Art

Recently we went through a one week period where things seemed to be breaking everywhere. The shelves in the pantry where collapsing. We had flying ants in the house. And my decorative shelves in the living room fell off the wall.



It was very sad. There was a lot of broken glass.

Rather than go out and buy new shelf decorations (Mike calls them knickknacks) I thought I'd make do with what we had around the house. Then I decided to make something. You can catch a peak of our Baltimore painting hanging on that wall. So sticking with the theme, I decided to make some Maryland-inspired art.

Quiz: What wildlife makes you think of Maryland?

Answer: Blue Crab, Baltimore Oriole, Black-Eyed Susan

I don't think the Blue Crab is officially anything to Maryland (except an awesome meal), but the other two definitely are: the state bird and state flower!

So I found some pictures of each online and began cheating tracing.


I wanted some fun, bright colors for this. I considered going with a solid background, but decided instead to be a little more crazy. Either probably would have turned out just fine. And I even kind of like how they look when the design is just outlined.



After a bit more coloring, here is the set.

Marylandpaintings copy

When they stand up the crab picture is a little unbalanced. I should have noted the poor craftsmanship before starting. Oh well.



So there we have it. Showing my Maryland pride yet again.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Garden 2012

In addition to it being Easter weekend, this was the weekend we decided to start our garden and do our yearly landscaping. Once a year our front yard looks awesome. Then, slowly, we forget to water things, weeds start sprouting, and we give up.

But once a year our yard looks like this: fresh flowers! It's a little hard to see, but those are fresh flowers and mulch under the tree.


Now for a street view.


Every year we seem to try out a new annual. This year we planted a bunch of marigolds. I mean they are every. Where.


And I'm well aware that they smell terrible, but I don't care. I hear that they repel mosquitoes, which is really what I was after. I had pinned this handy article on Pinterest and they were the only plants on the list I could easily find at Lowe's. So we'll see what happens.

As for our garden, our major accomplishment this weekend was weeding it. It was completely overtaken by weeds. Anyone else have those weeds that seem to shoot seeds when you touch then? After weeding, we mixed in some manure and hummus (which seemed to work awesome last year) and planted some spring onions, spinach, and lettuce. No pictures, unfortunately, since, the garden is still a heap of dirt.

We'll save the tomatoes and peppers for when it gets a tad warmer. We have the seedlings going in our kitchen and Mike has been diligently tending to them.

Instead of planting herbs in the garden again, we decided to change it up and use pots on the deck this year. Last year the herbs got so devoured by the tomato plants that the basil was the only one that really took off. So hopefully we have better luck with pots. Plus, by being on the deck they are easier to access. You know, instead of taking that grueling walk down the deck stairs!


And last but not least, our new tenant. This guy has been building a nest under the deck. He's woven a piece of balloon and ribbon into a nest, which leads me to believe he's a party animal. Plus he's got some tasteful decor.



Sunday, April 8, 2012