Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Ornament Exchange

Over 15 years of ornaments,
12 new handmade ones each year.
Each one is different.
Each one wonderful in their own way.
Some painstakingly ornate,
some lovingly hand stitched,
some rustic country, some shabby chic,
some painted with great detail,some with treasures from the past,
and some with spiritual meaning.
They were made using wood,
fabric, sticks, wire, buttons, old lace,
spoons, nails, teabags, clothespins,
and anything else that looked like it
wanted to be an ornament.
But all made with a ton of love by and
for each member of the group.

I think that it is safe to say that as
each member made their 12 ornaments
for the exchange it was with those other
members in mind-thinking of them,
praying for them, remembering past gatherings.

What precious times we have shared!

This wonderful collection ornaments
is a lot like each one of us-
all different and each one unique, beautiful,
charming, funny, special, detailed, rustic,
and handmade by our Creator
to be a blessing to others!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Christmas Ornament Exchange

For over a decade I have been part
of an ornament exchange group.
There are 12 of us, crafty creative friends.
Some have been in the group the entire time
and some have moved or left for other reasons.
When that happens there is someone
anxiously waiting to be part of the group.
Every year each one makes 12 ornaments. This is mine for this year.
In case you would like to make your own
peppermint ornament here are a few instructions.
I used a spice jar lid to make my circle.
Then I added a small ruffled
"fan" shape at both ends. I cut my pattern out of card stock and
then transferred the design to thin wood.
I had some scraps of thin birch or ash
cabinet grade plywood.
This was perfect for my project. Next, I cut out my shapes using a band saw.
It has been awhile since I have cut
crafty little shapes with this saw. Here is my stack of blank ornaments.
I drilled a hole for the hanger and
then sanded front and back.
I softly rounded of the front edges.
All the ornaments were base coated in
white acrylic. Using graphite paper,
I transferred the swirls to the ornament.
2 coats of red.
I floated a dusty blue around the
edges to give it some dimension.
And I added a few white highlights
to make it look like cellophane.
The exchange is Thursday night (tomorrow).
This is supposed to be the last one.
We will gather and eat, laugh, tell stories,
reminisce, ooh and ahh over all the ornaments.
We each get one each of all the ornaments.
12 new ornaments!
We have meet long enough to that I have well over
100 handcrafted ornaments made by precious friends.
What great memories!

Oh yes! I almost forgot to tell you.
On the back of my ornament I wrote,

"JESUS, sweetest name I know!"

Remember that Jesus is
the reason for the season!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

King of Kings W.I.P. (Work In Progress) Part 3

Here's the last phase of this painting.
I was so unhappy with most of this
painting that I should have just scrapped
the whole thing and started over.
But, I also felt that there
was potential here. I have photoshopped
out his face until the end. No peeking! I changed the crown, the hair color, and
the placement and strength of His hands,
the folds of the garment, and added
a "golden sash around His chest". Rev. 1:13 I was going to paint the scepter with jewels
on it but then decided on one large pearl,
the pearl of great price. Matt. 13:46
In the crown I set one drop of blood.
I finished the piece Saturday morning
while listening to "Crown Him With Many Crowns",
"I Worship You Almighty God",
"Meet With Me", and "Worthy is the Lamb".
I was almost undone!!!
I totally enjoyed redoing this painting.
Take a close look! Enlarge the image.
Let me remind you that we do not worship
the likeness or image of Jesus.
Rather, we-I worship HIM.
He alone is worthy!
I believe that Jesus and Father God
enjoy taking our lives, what we believe to
be messed up beyond repair,
and transforming them.
They transform our lives into
works of art that glorify our Creator.
Jesus loves you just as you are.
He also loves you too much to
leave you just as you are.
Have a wonderful, blessed Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

King of Kings W.I.P. (Work In Progress) Part 2

Welcome back!
I removed the tape that was protecting
the work I had already done.
The image is King of Kings-King Jesus.
The throne is the mercy seat.
I painted over the cherubim.
As I began to re-read Exodus
and the pattern of the tabernacle
and the mercy seat, I discovered that it
seems that the cherubim were standing.
Most artistic interpretations of the
mercy seat show them kneeling.

Now for the challenge of painting gold
without using metallic gold. So far, so good.
I like the gold effect but not His face.
I gave Him white hair from
the Revelation description
As I was painting the wings and feathers,
I turned my easel so that I could
watch a movie with Joe.
We watched "The Christmas Cottage".
It is the story of Thomas Kinade and
how he became the painter of light.
It was so inspirational.
Nathalie Kelley-the painter of ________?
One day !
Come back soon to see the finished painting.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

King of Kings W.I.P. (Work In Progress)

This post will be in three or four parts,
so stay with me. This doesn't look like
much right now but I think you will be
pleasantly surprised. Right now it looks
like a black and white cow!
I started this painting during the
His Joy Ministries "Worship Explosion".
I painted a rainbow (3 times).
I was never happy with the way that it looked.
So I blocked it out and started over. It looks like a mess right now
but I think I am finally on the track
to capture what I imagined.
I taped over the Jesus image so
I wouldn't have so much to redo (I thought)!
No rainbow this time,
just an explosion of rainbow colors,
the colors of God's promise.An old toothbrush and some
thinned white paint and what do you get?
Splatter, spots...STARS!
A few thin white lines this way and that and
Shooting stars or comets or
galaxies celebrating the King!
Be sure to come back for the
rest of the picture.
Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Don't Take It For Granted! Patriotic Watercolor!

Here is a piece that I just finished.

I was inspired by a video I saw last week.

Joe and I were at a job related training

and the instructor opened the session

with a short documentary about Frances Scott Key

and "The Star Spangled Banner".

I was moved to the very core of my being at

the sacrifices made by our founding fathers.

"O, say does that star spangled banner yet wave?

O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave."

or BECAUSE of the brave.

The flag is displayed on the porch

with the rocking chairs.

Comforting and comfortable.

But let's not take our liberty for granted.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Low Tide

I am teaching a watercolor class
at College on the Square tomorrow
(it's so late now, it's almost tomorrow).
This is one of the pieces we will be painting.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Name the Painting!!!

This painting needs a title, so I am having a contest.

Submit a title and if your title is the winner

you will receive a free print!

I look forward to hearing from you.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Concrete Floor Faux Acid Stain - Finished

Now for the finishing.
I can't remember where I saw this
suggestion but I told Shelby to use freeze
dried coffee crystals and sprinkle
them on the unsealed concrete,
then spray the crystals with water and wait.
Shelby did this part and
she added some faux cracks.
She sealed the floor with concrete sealer.
It doesn't leave a coat like polyurethane.
I like its finish and it holds up well.
After the floor dried overnight,
Shelby moved the furniture in the room.
It is a beautiful room. She and her husband,
Tommy were so pleased with the way it turned
out they are going to do this same finish
on several other rooms in their home.
Beautiful room! Good job, Shelby!
I can't wait to see the other rooms.

Thanks for stopping by. Come back soon!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Concrete Floor Faux Acid Stain

My friend, Shelby, called me about
her dilemma. She and her husband
had taken up the carpet in a bedroom and
now was unsure what to do next.
She had seen my laundry room floor
that I painted (that will be in another post).
We kicked around a few ideas and colors.
Then, they rented a orbital floor sander to
rough the surface a bit and to get rid of
the glue and yucky stuff.
She cleaned the floor with "TSP"
to have a good clean surface to work on.
We used Folk Art and Apple Barrel paints
(little squeeze bottles),
a good sized spray bottle filled with water,
chip brushes, freeze dried coffee,
and concrete sealer.
We laughed, talked, and worked.
It was great, hard fun.

The surface was sprayed with water,

an area about 3 feet wide and about

18inches deep, an area within your reach.

This is important -
The paint is worked into the concrete.
The colors are applied randomly in the
wet areas and worked into the concrete.
Watch your strokes!
Random and muted is the best.
Keep the edges moist.

Looking good! This is the closet.
Because she and I were working together,
we would trade places often to make sure
that my half of the room didn't look
different from her half of the room.
And of course, this reminds me of a scripture...
Ecclesiastes 4:9 Two are better than one,
because they have a good
return for their work!
There were places where the carpet tack
boards had been nailed into the floor.
Would it be best to fill or just work that into
the character of the floor? Shelby decided
that we would work with the pits.
So, with a long bristle liner brush and
very thin brown paint, I laid in a few cracks.
Some people would pay good money to
repair cracks but these are "faux" so it's okay!

Shelby has finished the floor and

put the furniture back in place.
When she sends me photos of the finished room,
I will finish the instructions,

so come back soon!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Thanks for the Rain

Here's the rain on my windshield
and it's not photoshop!
Thank you, Lord!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Purple Sage and Rain-Today

This was the sky yesterday morning.
We could see the rain-
so close and so far away.
It didn't rain yesterday.
I was beginning to think I was just an
"old wife" with the tale about the purple sage.
Remember, I told you that when the purple
sages bloomed it would rain within 10 days.
Today was day #10. This afternoon the
clouds rolled in, the sky darkened,
and water began to fall from the sky. There was some discussion concerning,
"was it raining, sprinkling, or drizzling."
My thought-it was a
wonderful shower of blessings.
The air was a little cool. It smelled wonderful.
And the sprinkles felt wonderful.
Isaiah 45:7-8 I form the light and create
darkness, I bring prosperity and create
disaster; I, the LORD, do all these things.
"You heavens above, rain down
righteousness; let the clouds shower
it down. Let the earth open wide,
let salvation spring up,
let righteousness grow with it;
I, the LORD, have created it.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Art of Conversation

This past Sunday we went to Sweetwater
to visit Emmauel Fellowship.
It is always such a blessing. After church Joe
and I went to Mrs. Allen's a very popular,
family-style restaurant. It is great fun
and the food is wonderful! The people
we sat with had never eaten there
before and were a bit surprised. The tables seat 8 and you just grab a spot.
The waitresses bring huge bowls of food and it is,
"Pass the mashed potatos, please";
"Could you hand me that platter of fried chicken."
and "Save room for the cobbler."
The most fun part is getting to meet new
people. Brittany and Tyler were from the
San Antonio area and the family of females
from Mesquite. They were just traveling thru
and saw all the cars and assumed that
the food must be good. They were right.
We chatted about occupations, interests,
and how did you meet.
You know Jesus did a lot of his minstry
and teaching at meal times.
He taught when he feed the 5,000,
at Mary and Martha's home,
at Zacchaeus' home, at Simon the Leper's
home, and at the Passover.
Maybe we are just more relaxed
when we sit at the table.
Food, Friends and Fellowship!
Invite Jesus to come and sit at your table.
"Please, pass me some of the fish and loaves!"
Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Purple Sage and Rain

It could be that I am an "old wife"
but I think this is worth sharing.
In our area of Texas we have bushes
known as Purple Sage.
Most of the time they are dusty, silver gray.
But sometimes they like to show off with
beautiful purple blooms.
Now the old wife part.
When the Purple Sage blooms,
it will rain within 10 days.
It can rain without them blooming
but when they bloom it will rain. It was about 15 years ago that I heard that,
so I began to pay attention.
When you live in a very dry area you pay
attention to anything having to do with rain.
In all those years, I have only witnessed one time
that it did not rain within the 10 days.
And another intersting thing I have noticed
is the brighter the blooms are, the heavier the
rain will be. The sages popped out bright
purple blossoms Sunday. That means
by next Wednesday it should rain!!!
"Let It Rain"
Let it rain. Let it rain.
Open the windows of heaven! Let it rain!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Celebration of the Hearts

Last weekend I had the priviledge of
being the guest artist at
Celebraton of the Hearts, a fund raising
event for Mission Messiah. It was
held at the Green Tree Country Club.
The food was delicious!!!Joe asked the event coordinator where
he should sit. She told him that he could
sit at any table that didn't have a
reserved sign on it. After he chose a seat,
this kind gentleman came to sit at the
same table. Joe told he that until I
had been asked to paint, we had never
heard of Mission Messiah. He asked him if
he knew anything about that ministry.
The man introduced himself and told
Joe that he was the founder of the Mission.
How awesome was that?!?
The hope of Mission Messiah
is that every hurting woman experiences
the unconditional love of Jesus and finds
a new life in Christ. God has a plan and a
purpose for every life and His heart is the
restoration of each one us to His Divine Call.
Through a disciplined structure of prayer,
Bible study, scripture memorization,
Biblical counseling, work assignments and
recreation, residents are taught life and
leadership skills. Each woman also receives
educational and career counseling
as well as financial management training.
Life at the Mission is very family-oriented
rather than institutional. Mothers are
encouraged to have their children with
them during this time of healing.
I painted while the guests visited, ate,
and placed bids for the silent auction.
There was a lot of art donated by local
artists. The featured artist,
Jennifer Contini, brought several very
large pieces from her studio in New York.
Those were offered in the live auction.

This is my friend, Annette.

The event was her niece's vision.

The finished piece-up for auction!

"The Father's Heart"
The scripture emphasis was from
Malachi 5:6 He will turn the hearts of the
fathers to their children, and the
hearts of the children to their fathers.
The Father’s hands emerge from the darkness
in the shape of a heart. The Father’s
hands are painted using all the colors of flesh.
Cradled in the hands are 3 forms:
blue for the sons, pink for the daughters,
and purple (the combination of blue and pink)
for the earthly fathers. Their arms overlap
each other also forming a heart.
This is a two-edged message.
Not only is God turning earthly father’s
and children’s heart toward each other but
as His spiritual sons and daughters,
He is turning our hearts to Him.
The Hebrew word for turning means
“to return home again”. Let’s return to Him!
To purchase prints of this image
a portion will go to Mission Messiah!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

One Man's Trash...

I wasn't actually dumpster diving.
I was just taking out the trash
and found this in the dumpster.
It was clean and right on the top.
It was some sort of school math
cirriculum tote. I saw immediatey
there was potential for this cart.
It just needed someone to love it
and give it a new direction.
Kind of like us sometimes.This was going to be just right
for my traveling paint gear.
Sometimes I paint at a clients location
and my favorite -
to paint during worship.
I grabbed my paints and
embellised the top.
It is just the right size for my dropcloth,
a bin for brushes, a bin for paint,
a roll of paper towels, several containers
for water, and a pocket for
promotional materials.
It's just like it was made for me.

I covered the old logo with gesso
and a couple of coats of black.
A new look, a new purpose,
redeemed from the pit.
That will preach!!!

Be assured that if you are feeling like a
failure, feeling unappreciated,
tossed aside, or no longer useful -
it could be that you are at the
beginning of a new phase
and purpose for your life.
You may feel that people have
given up on you but
God never gives up on you!
2 Corinthians 5:17
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ,
he is a new creation;
the old has gone,
the new has come!

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