Saturday, December 31, 2016

2017 Goals

I do have a few goals to accomplish in the new year of 2017, not resolutions.  I really REALLY hate that word.  Years ago I so dreaded this time of year because I knew The Hubby was watching and waiting on me to make a new resolution to lose weight, YET AGAIN, and again I would fail in his eyes.  I just could not take that kind of rejection because I knew I needed to do it for me NOT for him and I was not ready and I DID NOT want to do it just because he said, "JUST DON'T EAT!"  Yeah, right.  So easy for him to say as he works out, is dedicated to it, and can burn the calories he eats.  My body is just different.  Besides he is the one with the triglyceride and cholesterol problems, not me.  I take a small blood pressure pill and that keeps my blood pressure in check.  Nothing else bothers me. 

 Anyway, back to my goals for 2017:

Clean out the pantry, AGAIN but get rid of stuff in there I don't use like a chaffing dish I might use next year...maybe not.  I've already been cleaning out some kitchen stuff that as I was baking realized had not been used since we moved in the house 10 years ago...bu-bye!  And why is it that The Hubby looks around the house, at my stuff, and says we need to get rid of said stuff!  Look, he has buildings of stuff, BUILDINGS!  He does not need to voice his opinion on this subject and look accusingly at me!

Clean out, YET AGAIN, the guest room closet and purge non-essential Christmas decor and Longaberger baskets, piano/choir music.

Create an art website and SELL, SELL, SELL.

Enter in more art competitions nationally and online.

Lofty goals, sort of.  Now on the eating front, last year I pretty much gave up diet pop, not that I don't enjoy one once in awhile.  We went on a carb-less diet briefly, but, we still observe it a good part of the time.  I cook fresh, fresh, fresh and we eat in a good part of the time.  Even if we eat out it's higher end restaurants that cook fresh and we choose wisely.  Lots and lots of veggies.  I attribute this change of eating to why my blood pressure is so much better and the scale was actually down a bit at the doctor's office!  

The one thing I truly need to make a resolution on is to get back into exercise.  I so miss it and I am just not self-motivating.  I walk by my exercise bike and say hello and good-bye.  I just can't make myself do it.  Actually, the problem is that I don't want to do it at home, because...because...I admit it, I DON'T want The Hubby to see me do it and give me that sideways look of you won't stick to it, you're not doing it right or enough....

MAKES ME CRAZY!

I would like to get back to Jazzercise but the drive I'm not sure I want to do.  I've done it, I can do it again.  I just can't do a lot of the stuff I used to do with it but I so miss those ladies.  A trainer, maybe I could again, but I doubt it right now.  Oh, I just don't know.  

Happy New Year...

Thursday, December 29, 2016

2016 Good Riddance

Just a few days left of 2016 and I can say I can't wait to see it go.  Between you and me, for our business it has SUCKED A BIG ONE.  Actually, it started a few years ago but last year was the worst.  Lately though things have started looking up, we hope.  We just have about 5 more years if it can just hold on and not sap our savings trying to keep it afloat.  I'm ready for it to surge again like it did after the ice storm of a few years ago, (sorry people who suffered.)  Our business, electrical and generators, just hit the highest point ever during that time and we need it again, not an ice storm but a surge.  

Yesterday I spent the day at home.  I just did not feel like leaving the house so I read and painted.  That is what I want to do everyday.

It's so sad to turn on the news and see so many we have lost this year and recently:  George Michael, Debbie Reynolds, Carrie Fisher, Ava Gabor, Alan Thicke, John Glenn, Florence Henderson, LEON RUSSELL, Leonard Cohen, Robert Vaughn (Man From U.N.C.L.E. fame...aw heart), Gene Wilder, Anton Yelchen (so tragic), Muhammad Ali, Prince!!!!, Patty Duke, Maurice White (Earth, Wind and Fire founder), Glenn Frey, Alan Rickman, DAVID BOWIE!  That is just a few that have left my jaw dropped.   Sadly so many are around my age and that is damn scary!  Time is way too short and you need to enjoy some of the time you have left on this earth and I want to spend it in front of my easel!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Part 2 of Aaaachooo

Yes we are still battling the head cold but mine is soooo much better, in fact this was the easiest cold I've ever had.  They Hubby is still in the throws of  the drainage and coughing up from his chest.  That is usually me.  When I first started coming down with this thing The Hubby said that we didn't have any cold medicine yet when I looked on my side of the medicine chest I found an unopened box of Umcka Care.  It said it cuts the lifespan of colds down.  I was on board and immediately opened and down the hatch it went.  It's an herbal extract and I so sold on the benefits.  In fact my doctor this morning said he has heard of it and the benefits of it working!!!  I'm going to purchase another bottle or two of it and make The Hubby use it.  We've also been using the Mucinex which works wonders too.  Unfortunately, Snicklefritz came down with it Christmas morning along with her mother.  Dang it.  Also, when we went to my Daddy's for Christmas breakfast my brother is in the final states of Type A Flu (he's on the CDC list and he even had a flu shot), my niece has been sick and her momma, my SIL.  None of us wanted to even get close to Daddy.  Tis the season to hack, blow and sneeze I guess.  

The good news is that I am almost over it and when I went to the doctor this morning to have my thyroid checked again my weight was down, slightly, even at Christmas time, and my blood pressure was normal!!!!!  This is the second time it has been in the good range!!!  He was very pleased and so am I.  

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!


"Ho-Ho-Ho, Merry Christmas" 14x11 oil on linen

Yesterday, Christmas Eve I of course could not stay asleep so up at 3:45 I was.  After checking out Facebook, my blog, playing a bit on the IPad I decided to paint before the sun came up.  Just to do something since we didn't have to be anywhere till 6 in the evening.  I painted these red roses from a photo I took at Southern Hills Country Club a couple of weeks ago while attending our bank party. I thought it might be fun after the yellow roses.  I'm kind of liking painting roses lately.

And cool, cool, it sold last night to The Hubby's cousin!   
"Christmas Roses" 12x9 oil on senso linen and (SOLD)

I also have not shared the last two because they were gifts and I didn't want the family members to see them yet.  This sweet puppy face is Buddy.  Buddy belongs to The Hubby's brother and his husband and I wanted to paint it for them.  

It turned out so very cute! 
"Buddy" 8x10 oil on senso linen

This photo I took while visiting my mother-in-law a few weeks ago at her retirement place.  These were in the lobby.  I never miss an opportunity to capture a photo of a possible painting.

"Gloria's Roses" 11x14 oil on senso linen

The gifts were huge hits and I can't wait to paint something for more family members.


Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Christmas Rant

I've been thinking...yes, that's a dangerous thing.  I've been thinking about Christmas when I was a child.  I remember a real tree with actual tinsel that had so much static in it you could hardly get it off your hands to hang on the tree.  I'm not even sure you can find tinsel anymore.  Mother's ornaments I think are long gone, possibly in the attic...yuck...  I believe we kids salvaged all that we could when mother decided to stop putting up a tree.  I still have my old felt stocking that is so fragile it's almost dust.  

I remember mother telling a story of when we were tiny tots and she went in to a local 5&10 store and found a small artificial tree.  She didn't have enough money, like a couple of dollars less than what he wanted for it and I think the thing was $7-8.  She offered what she had, maybe $5-6 and he told her if she couldn't afford to pay full price then she didn't need it.  She was so embarrassed I actually saw her cry.  She only wanted to have something for my brother, sister and I for Christmas.  Most of the time my mother made our Christmas presents, like these pajamas in the photo.  The stockings were filled with oranges, apples and nuts and we maybe got one big package under the tree.  Money rich we were not yet Christmas was a magical time of year.  Christmas carols, pageants at church, and the smells of baking things throughout the house.  Christmas eve at Grandma and Grandpa's with tons of cousins.  We definitely got presents there.  Sometimes it was a package of lifesavers and it was the best present ever.  Then as we got older we were able to make our own money helping Granny and Granddaddy doing various things.  A dollar, a pocketful of change, it all added up and then Granny would take us to the OTHER five and dime store in our small town (avoiding the ogre at the other one) and we would carefully buy for every cousin, aunt, mother, father, brother and sister.  Remember it was very little money and the 5&10 was CHEAP.  A bottle of foul smelling bottle of Midnight in Paris perfume might be fifty cents.  We took great pride in wrapping the gifts and handing them out on Christmas eve.  (Sister never did like what I bought for her.)  Christmas was absolutely magical.  Nowadays, it's not so magical.  I want to see the magic in my granddaughter's eyes.  The sparkle that maybe, just maybe Santa Claus is real.  That there are real reindeer prancing around on her roof. 

With all the commercials, sales, run on stores, everyone afraid that they can't get the MOST expensive gadget or toy for their child, Christmas has lost all magic.  Christmas shows, commercials, even running non-stop Christmas carols on the radio starting the week of Thanksgiving is just TOO MUCH.  I want to forget about everything that is happening in the world right now and live the magic.  Baking, wrapping, making presents, spending time with friends and loved ones celebrating, THAT is Christmas.

Merry Christmas friends.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Aaaaa CHOOOoooooo!

"Ho-Ho-Ho, Merry Christmas"
14x11 oil on linen
Yup, I have a COLD, a head cold.  Thank you The Hubby!  I guess too much kissing.  

Yesterday we went to an open house in which an appetizer was requested to bring.  I was going to make a sandwich kind of thing but realized I had used up my bread for another party this weekend and I JUST COULD NOT go to the store again, at least for a few days.  Soooo, to the fridge and pantry I went digging around for ideas.  What I came up with was cream cheese, sour cream, black beans, Rotel tomatoes, canned corn and cheddar cheese.  I softened the cream cheese and drained the beans and corn, not the tomatoes and mixed it all together.  I didn't have taco seasoning but added cilantro and cumin.  I didn't have any tortilla chips but had pita chips which worked fine as it was heavy dip.  After I mixed it all up I put it a baking dish (a deep pie dish) and put it in the oven at 350 degrees for about 20-30 minutes till hot.  I was a HUGE hit!  Not all was eaten so I brought about a fourth of it home.  

Tonight for dinner, in between trying to swallow on a sore throat and sneezing I thought about making The Hubby take me out but I just didn't feel like getting out again.  I don't really feel bad, which is good.  I had chicken tenders thawing in the fridge and some egg noodles of which I was going to make some chicken and noodles but needed a PIZAZZ and thought of that leftover dip.  I added the dip and man oh man sooooo good!  Kind of a creamy spicy chicken and noodles.  

Mr. Santa up there I painted today at the office.  

Friday, December 16, 2016

End Zone Tree

Project:  This spring there will be an art show at the Broken Arrow Museum and the theme for the show is:  "What About Broken Arrow." Well, since I am from BA I think I might have a leg up on ideas.  I quickly went to my book shelves to look in a book I have about the first 100 years of BA and as I looked I found the story and picture of the End Zone Tree. 

The tree was planted in the 40's at the end zone of Kirkland Field by one H.K. Ragsdale, my former principal, former football coach for my dad.  Recently they tore down my (our) old high school and the football field for bigger and better (NOT).  Everyone was in a huge uproar and with great sadness it was done.  The tree was still there and H.K.'s son, Jim tried to save it in some way.  He found a tree doctor to look and see what could be done but along with the football field it was done.  So the next option was to save the trunk of the tree and have it carved into our team/school mascot, the might TIGERS!  A fund was started and it was done.  I'm not sure where it will sit yet but it has been preserved.
Now on to my idea for an art piece.  I decided that I would paint the End Zone Tree with the image of a tiger coming out of the tree!  So sketching I began.
Tuesday I started the painting. 
No it is on the green leaves, grass, etc.  I am proud of it so far and can't wait for the trunk to dry so I can begin the rest. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

"Julia"

I finished the roses.  Yes, I have it done and I love it.  I named them yellow roses but I'm changing it, mainly because I already have one called yellow roses.  I'm naming this painting "Julia" in honor of my mother.

"Julia"
24x12 oil

Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Baking 101, Or Maybe Not

Yesterday was supposed to be an art class day but as I wrote a couple of days ago it instead became a work day.  I had so much mail to open and piles of just crap I needed to go through after being absent for 3 days.  I knew it was going to be a long day with a break in the middle to attend a luncheon with some of those art buddies.  Finally leaving the office I had to go to the bank, the post office and finally the grocery store.  Snicklefritz was going to spend the night so I needed to get food and stuff to bake.  My plan was and is for her and I to bake today, mainly cookies and my famous fruitcake.  Back and forth through the store I loaded up on flour, sugar, butter, and pecans, you know the usual baking stuff.  BUT, when it came time to find the candied red cherries and candied pineapple I was up and down the aisles so many times I was getting angry trying to find said products.  Finally I found someone to help me and she directed me to an end cap at the back of the store, at the top, a tiny little boxed area where there about 10 containers of citron (YUCK)  and green cherries, obviously a hold over from what didn't sell last year.  WHAT THE *****!!!!  I was not happy and I told anyone who would listen to me.  Totally messed up my plans to bake fruitcake with Snicklefritz.  I DO NOT have time to go traipsing around town to different grocery stores looking for candied cherries and pineapple.  Really REALLY made me mad.  Then this morning I was awake at 4 AM...yes 4 AM!  I thought I would look on Amazon, and guess what, Friday my candied cherries and pineapple will be delivered in time for her and I to make fruitcake as she is spending the night again!  I am STOKED!  


The downside this morning of me being awake at 4 am is that Snicklefritz is up at 5:37!  
😞😞😞😞😞😞😞

Sunday, December 04, 2016

This and That Christmas Crap

Good morning.  A quick update about my fast track life lately.  I have to admit I took two whole days at art class this week, I needed it!  Actually, I didn't work at the office much, but tried to get my Christmas shopping done, and did.  This year was order online and a few gift cards and DONE!  Wait, I forgot the great niece, well, one more.  

Next week is going to be OFF the CHART busy.  Tomorrow I'm attending yet another art workshop with Christopher Westfall.  You might remember a few weeks doing one but it was abstract.  This one is representational, which is basically what I do.  A one day affair I anticipate a lot of learning from a new eye.  That evening I HAVE to rush home because it's our banks Christmas party at Southern Hills and we always love to go to it.  Unfortunately I will miss the Jazzercise girls Christmas party that same night.  Oh well, something has got to give.  Speaking on that I am NOT going to art on my usual Tuesday, opting to work in the office since I'm missing Monday at my desk.  Plus Tuesday night after a full day at the desk and maybe my easel there Snicklefritz is spending the night because her Momma will be on TV (Channel 8-KTUL) to promote The Alliday Show very early the next day.  I'm sure she will be in my care a good part of the day which is okay BUT means I have got to wrap presents quickly today.  Also on Tuesday I have a luncheon with the Tulsa Artists Guild peeps in which I will attend and transport two of my art buddies before heading back to the desk.  

Thursday, YES, back to art class and my peeps!  I really don't need the class anymore, so to speak, but the critique and laughter with my friends is what I pay for.  I LOVE the whole thing!  Friday is back to work with payroll and pay bills!  YUCK!  Then Snicklefritz will again spend the night and be with us till about noon because we have yet another Christmas party to attend on Saturday night.  Busy, busy, busy.  

This past weekend we opted to stay in town and not go to the cabin because The Hubby had a dance thing in OKC on Saturday.  I didn't mind because I NEEDED to get the Christmas tree up and decorated if Snicklefritz was coming.  Actually, my heart was NOT into it this year, mainly because I wasn't hosting anything, next will be a different story.  So Friday morning I didn't go into the office until late in the day.  I spent the morning digging out the tree and decorations out of the guest closet.  That left a MESS in my guest room, Snicklefritz's bedroom when she spends the night.  (Yet another mess to clean up!)  Plus I HAD to get my closet under control.  I still had stuff in a bag from our travels to Italy, IN SEPTEMBER!  I hate clothes.  I took the opportunity to dump TONS of summer clothes that I did not wear this year.  
Oh, and two suitcases out of the guest closet that I don't use anymore.  With a gigantic bag of clothes to give away and two suitcases in tow my first stop on my way to lunch with The Hubby was Goodwill.  Before that though I did get the tree up, not decorated but up so The Hubby could light it.  Last year my wonderful pre-lit tree gave it up and didn't pre-lit anymore and he took all the lights off planning on LED lights.  He wanted to string the lights this year.  That was a first let me tell you.  In nearly 41 years of marriage that man has probably put two ornaments on a tree.  There was reason for that, no design style in tree decor.  So Friday night he strung "HIS" lights.  I looked at the way he did it and knew I would be restringing.  That guy is a MASTER at lighting homes, inside and out, but Christmas tree lighting inside, ummm, no!  While he was gone all day on Saturday until late I put ornaments on but because I can't seem to find the spirit it wasn't as much fun.  It just seems that we jumped right into Christmas without enjoying fall and Thanksgiving.  Next year I am SLoooowwwwing down and enjoying the experience again!  

Christmas tree is done, not like I have done in the past but done.  The storage boxes are back in the closet along with everything else I had to drag out of their and today I will organize the gifts that are piled on the bed into the dining room and wrap.  Yes, wrap, wrap, wrap.  The niece may get money in a card!