Strange Creature

Imagination is a Strange CreatureHello Friends!

Sorry I missed my mid-week post again this week.  On Wednesday I took the day off work and did my Christmas shopping.  I left home at 10am and didn’t get back until 6pm.  My husband said “What have you been doing all this time?”.  He does all his shopping online or just buys vouchers for people!  Anyway I can’t say I was full of festive spirit, but I bought a lot of stuff and spent a lot of money and now it’s all wrapped up it looks OK.

I am disappointed that this year I haven’t had time to make presents for my friends, but I just didn’t feel up to is in November and then ran out of time to even start in December.

My mood has improved this month and I will be glad once Christmas is out of the way, it’s not really my favourite time of year but at least I am having a long break from work so I’m bound to have time for some art.  I am hoping too that T picked up on those massive hints I dropped for new art supplies.

We have some family coming to stay just after Christmas so yesterday I decided to do some housework, and managed to put my back out within about an hour, I was only bending over to pick something up too and it wasn’t even heavy.  Fortunately it’s not too bad and the painkillers are helping to relieve it so I can carry on with my tasks.  Today’s task is to clean the grout between the tiles in the bathroom.  It has to be done because recently I’ve been standing in the shower looking up at the tiles and thinking ‘Yuk, that looks horrible’!  The truth is I’m not really cut out for domesticity, if I did it more often it wouldn’t have got into such a state, but unfortunately I can always find more interesting things to do than clean and tidy 😦

However I promise you that by the time I finish today it will SPARKLE!

So this page is the last page in my A4 journal which I started in October 2011 and is a page I did for Traci Hanson’s Journal Quest on 21 Secrets.  I found a Big Bird and a Polar Bear cub in my painting.  Strange eh!

Have a great week everyone

Big love

AJ 🙂


Home, a place of safety


Home, a place of safetyHello friends!

I hope you are all well and happy.  I have had a busy weekend.  Yesterday I had to make myself go and do the voluntary work in the cemetery, it was hard because I knew RoseMarie wouldn’t be there, but I also knew it’s what she would want me to carry on.  It was a lovely sunny morning and my friend Kate came to join me and we spent a pleasant couple of hours recording inscriptions from some of the memorials.

In the afternoon I went shopping, I was hoping to be able to buy some old National Geographic magazines cheap from one of the charity shops, but I couldn’t find any 😦  However in one of the charity shops I did find a rather fabulous scrap book of newspaper cuttings someone (unknown) made in the 1930s, I probably spent more than I should have done on it, but I couldn’t resist!  In the same shop I also got some good artist brushes for a bargain price.  Well you can never have too many brushes can you?

It is now 6:30 pm and this is the first time I’ve sat in front of my computer today.  I had to resist switching it on because I had chores to do today.  I got up early this morning and started to clear out and tidy up the cupboard under the stairs.  Eventually we intend to move the washing machine in there to free up some space in the kitchen.  It’s hard to believe that so much stuff could be crammed into such a small space.  I was ruthless and threw of lot out!  When my husband got up (much later than me) we spent time working out how we are going to deal with the plumbing and then we went to a big DIY store to buy the materials we will need.

It was too late to start by the time we got back so I went to see Mum and Dad, who are both fine, and I’ve just got back from that visit.

This image above is a single page from my A4 size journal and was done fairly quickly (I guess you can tell that) as part of the Fall Fearless and Fly challenge:

Headline prompt: Security, what makes you feel safe and secure? What rattles your sense of security? Where do you go for comfort and refuge?

Color prompt: Cool colors (blues, greens, violets, etc)

Quote prompt: You can’t make a place for yourself in the sun, if you keep taking refuge under the family tree. Helen Keller.

Well, my home and my art room make me feel safe and secure so that’s where I go for comfort.  I managed to get my two cats into the image, but not my husband, he is probably around the back of the house tending to the garden, either that or he is upstairs haveing a nap 🙂  By the way my house is not as big as the one depicted on the page.

I’m not sure who to attribute the quote I used to, I have seen several similar quotes attributed to different people, but nevertheless it is what I feel about home.  I feel that I ruined it with the terrible writing, but never mind…

Have a good week everyone and I’ll be back soon.

Big love

AJ 🙂

Do What Matters Most

Do What Matters Most



Hello friends!

Apologies I am out of sych again with my blog posting because I have been super busy again.

This journal page was made back in August, I used a lot of ephemera for the background including a leaflet a got from the doctors about a (rather unpleasant) medical procedure I had to go through, and a leaflet my husband had about access to work.  The colour scheme is a bit odd, I don’t think that acid green and purple really go together that well but it’s just what happened when I made the page.  The words were originally done in a different way and I hated how they looked and re-did them.  To be honest I’m not really that pleased with this page, but I love the sentiment.

At the moment what seems to matter most to me is creating art.  I have just finished my first Teesha inspired journal and I love it.  Creating it has definitely been feeding my soul and given me some ideas which I shall be pursuing in the next few months.

On Friday I gave my presentation to the group in Ventnor and it went really well, I enjoyed it and, judging by all the smiling faces and the comments I received afterwards the audience did too.  I have one more presentation to do tomorrow evening and then I can relax a bit and try and get my life back on track and hopefully regular posting to my blog.

This weekend we successfully constructed the window blind for the dining room (it took several attempts to get it right), so I will soon have to start looking at how to improve the kitchen (and you know how I feel about that)!

Have a good week and I’ll see you soon

Big love

AJ 🙂


You are Here

You are Here

Hello friends!

This is probably the most summery weekend we have had all year and I’ve been stuck inside working away on my computer preparing stuff for the history exhibition in September.  Never mind, at least I didn’t get sunburnt and at least it is nice to look out the window and see bright light.

The image above is just a single page from my A4 journal.  I used quite a lot of ripped up map for the background so I thought You Are Here was an appropriate quote.  The criss-cross lines I made by inking up a wheel from toy car and running it across the page.

On Tuesday I have to go for an interview at work so that, in 30 minutes, my competencies can be assessed and then I think I will just be slotted into a job where they (senior managers and HR) think I will fit best.  It’s all a bit strange really especially as I have already applied for a post that was advertised internally but that’s not what they are interviewing me for.  Anyway I have decided that I just need to do some preparation, go along, do the best I can, not get too anxious about it and try to enjoy the experience.  I’ll let you know how I got on next time I post.  I think it must be quite a tough interview because the 5 managers I work with have already been through the process and 3 of them have not been reappointed to their roles.  I already know I am not going to be reappointed to my role as it is disappearing into vapour in the restructure, but I will definitely still have a job.  So there is definitely something new for me just around the corner.  Exciting or what!

OK I am going to drag myself away from the computer now and the many things that I am supposed to be doing and I’ll go and see if Mum and Dad want to come out for a drive and an icecream.

See you later

Big love

AJ 🙂



GlowHello friends

I hope everyone is well and happy 🙂

Well it’s mid week and I’m still struggling to find time to do my ever growing list of ‘things to do’, know how it is…

My dad is recovering well from his operation now, he’s pretty tough for someone who is going to be 90 this year.  Yesterday, my eldest brother, his wife, Tony and I took Mum and Dad out for a meal to celebrate mum’s 80th birthday.  We had a lovely time.  This weekend my other brother and his family are coming over from France to see us all.  It will be a short visit but nevertheless a treat for Mum and Dad.

The page above is from my A4 journal and is a page I did for Rachel Whetzel‘s workshop ‘Silent Messages’ in last year’s 21 Secrets.  Rachel recommended using Creative Paperclay to add texture to a page.  I couldn’t find any in the local shops so I used Fimo Air Light, I think it worked about the same.  You smooth a thin layer of the clay onto a wet page of your journal so it sticks to the paper and then make impressions in the clay.  When it’s dry you paint over the whole thing with gesso and then just treat it like a normal journal page.  I put the clay onto the page without thinking about what I could use to make impressions.  I was stumped for a while so I just grabbed a round, wooden carved pot from my desk and rolled that over the wet clay.  When it was dry and gesso’d I used acrylic paints, scrap book paper and printed tissue paper to add layers.  I finished the page with gold Rub ‘n’ Buff on some of the edges and stamped the word glow with gold metalic acrylic paint.

When the clay dries it does warp the page quite a bit.  That might bother some people but I like it.

You can find out about this year’s 21 Secrets here.  It’s a great place to get inspiration 🙂

That’s all for now, catcha later

Big love