Category Archives: Childlike Fun


Randy Pausch –

I’ve been having a wonderful time for several weeks now, making Christmas presents for my friends. I got the idea for the theme of the presents several months ago, and ideas have been rattling around in my brain ever since.

I finally ordered the materials I needed and began to play as soon as they arrived. I looked on the net for some reference pictures for some of my ideas, and then began drawing my ideas with pencil. There are two sides to each present and 8 friends, so there was a lot of drawing.

I’ve been painting for about three weeks now, having a truly wonderful time in my art room. I’m not in any hurry. My goal is to make some progress on the project each day, but enjoying every minute of the process. I’m about to finish ‘Side 1″ of the 8 presents.

Making time to have FUN each day is important to your soul, your sense of worth, your outlook. It’s a buffer against whatever challenges with which you are dealing, replenishing strength and resilience you’ll need. A time for JOY gives you peace of mind, if only for a little while each day – a coping mechanism that is priceless.

I used to put time in my art room, time for reading, listening to music, playing in my garden or yard, writing this blog on my to-do list WHEN I COULD MAKE THE TIME – if possible when my work and other obligations are under control. Now I consciously make time to at least ONE of the things I love on a daily basis. I feel stronger, happier, and more alive since I switched my priorities.

NOTE: I have to admit (shhhhh!) I felt guilty when my husband came in for batteries for his remote for the TV this morning and had Amber hair all over the front of his shirt from getting down on the carpet to work in the area under the TV in the entertainment center. Looks like I should make time to vacuum the first floor carpet today…. :0)

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Filed under Attitude, building good habits, Changes, Childlike Fun, Encouragement, fun, fun in my art room, playing in my art room

Life is Too Short to Dawdle

I’m taking the above to heart, spending much of the afternoon yesterday – when I wasn’t outside playing with my “Peppa Pig” Giant Bubble Wand – working on the Christmas presents for my friends. I think I have the basic designs roughed-in now with pencil. I have a few details to add, but then I’ll take them back upstairs and start painting.

I’ve missed spending time trying to create something. I really don’t know why I seem to have to give myself ‘permission’ to play, after all the ‘important’ stuff is done. I’m beginning to realize I may have my priorities flipped. There ARE some things that HAVE to be done at a certain time, but not ALL of the things on my list. I’m proving to myself that I NEED to include as much fun as possible in each day.

I spent much of the day yesterday grinning from ear to ear. I’m on the lookout now for a “HUMONGOUS” bubble wand. The one I played with yesterday was fun and made me smile and laugh. Our dog, Amber, came outside with me. At one point one of the bubbles landed on her ear. She startled and barked! I loved it. I want to be able to make a really extraordinary bubble, though, rather than several reasonable sized ones at one time. I’ll start looking because life is too short to dawdle.

I’m really looking forward to the painting part of the Christmas presents. I’m lucky to count several people as close enough friends I want to MAKE something for them to show them how special they are to me. I really get into the zone while I’m working on these. I have to set my alarm because time streaks past, making me unaware of responsibilities. A place of joy, for sure. :0)

I hope you find many things you find fun, too.

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Filed under Bubble Blowing, Childlike Fun, fun, fun in my art room

The Joy of Bubbles


Blowing bubbles has always been one of my favorite things. I don’t know why, but I can’t stop smiling when I’m around them – whether I’m doing the blowing or others are.

Physics –

Bubbles are a happy-maker. You can’t be UNhappy and blow bubbles at the same time. I always have some bubble juice stashed somewhere, just in case – kind of like the things on the wall in buildings that tell you to ‘break glass in case of fire.’ “Break out the bubbles in case of sadness.”

And creative people have come up with new and different ways for people to enjoy blowing bubbles!


Where Imagination Grows

One Little Project

Adobe Stock
The Hans India

Thought Co

MSU College

This looks like the one I’ll be using tomorrow. Mine is called, “Peppa Pig Giant Bubble Wand.” It cost $1.99 plus tax and I scooped it up at the grocery store Friday. I can’t wait to use it sitting on the deck, and maybe even running out in the back yard (being careful not to fall in the soft spots created by moles, voles and other “ole’s” as I do.)

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First Grade

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More Child Face Painting

Womans Day

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The Art of Face Painting

Linnea Onnerby

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Can’t Wait to Do This

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Thoughts on a Wednesday 6-9-2021

Isn’t this wonderful? The child’s happiness just radiates from this sculpture. (Not sure how happy the frog is, though)

Summer is here in Arkansas all of a sudden. The temperatures are soaring, the humidity is rising. Afternoon thunderstorms are forecast almost daily, with or without severe weather. We have had SO much rain this year that one of the next things we need to do is trim out some of the greenery that is trying to close off our driveway. I will drive the truck S-L-O-W-L-Y down one side of the driveway. My husband will ride in the back, yelling at me to stop each time he needs to work an area. He’ll lop things off as well as possible, throwing the debris to the side of the driveway. When we get to the bottom (650 feet down our steep driveway) I’ll drive to the church, turn around and then go UP the other side of the driveway. We have SO much this year that we will probably need to do this several times before it is reasonably clear.

Ironically, one of the next pressing things is to get our irrigation system for the yard on, tested, repaired where we have blowouts, and schedule to run. Our rain will probably shut off one of these days, like Mother Nature turned off the faucet, and things will dry up and die fast.

I’ll spread out the black plastic we had on the floor of the greenhouse, trying to get the remaining plastic to dry enough that the mud will fall off. Right now the mud and rain makes it weigh a TON. I think that once it is dry enough, I can get the remains into two more leaf bags. Then I’ll spread grass seed on the bare area that was under the plastic and clean things up. And the dismantling of my beloved greenhouse will be finished. I’m disappointed that I wasn’t able to make it work. It was too cold or too hot 99 percent of the time. We did what we could, with barrels of water warmed up by the sun, plus a space heater on a LONG extension cord in the winter, and extra fans and as much cross breeze as we could get in the summer. I think we could have made it work if we could have afforded to fully heat and cool it. Maybe we can try again if we win the lottery or the Publisher’s Clearing House Sweepstakes.

One thing we were looking for over 30 years ago now when we were looking for land on which to build our home, was running water (a brook, or stream, or even a pond.) We couldn’t find that and ‘settled for” the top of a ridge line with a terrific view of two more ridge lines behind us and the valley in-between. If we had been able to find the water, maybe I could still find the childhood joy of catching a frog…

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Remembering – www,

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I’m Always Looking

Christopher Moore via

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Joy on a Rainy Day

I’ve been having a wonderful time in my art room this afternoon.

I started some new wooden earrings to which I’ll attach posts. I have the fronts finished, but I need to wait for them to dry so I can paint the edges and the backs. Then I’ll bring them downstairs to glue on the posts.

I also started some small hard canvas boards, using Unicorn Spit paints. When they dry, I’ll add some of my favorite quotes.

I truly love the Unicorn paints. Thanks FOREVER to my wonderful sister-in-law, MaryLou, for sending me a starter set – just because she saw them and thought I might have fun with them. The possibilities are truly endless, and a joy for any level of ‘arty-ness.’ If you haven’t tried these, they are such FUN. You can use the paints on almost anything. I’ve painted totes, tee shirts, paper, wood, and these hard canvas boards so far. You can paint with brushes, or use them like fingerpaint. They are non-toxic, water soluble and are not permanent until you spray or paint them with fixatives. Truly wonderful stuff!

Hopefully, I can show you my latest batch of things soon.



Filed under Childlike Fun, playing in my art room

How Grandchildren Perceive Their Grandparents


This was sent to me by my good friend, Marsha. I smiled all the way through and just had to share these –

1. I was in the bathroom, putting on my makeup, under the watchful eyes of my young granddaughter, as I’d done many times before. After I applied my lipstick and started to leave, the little one said, “But Grandma, you forgot to kiss the toilet paper good-bye!” I will probably never put lipstick on again without thinking about kissing the toilet paper good-bye….
2. My young grandson called the other day to wish me Happy Birthday. He asked me how old I was, and I told him, 72. My grandson was quiet for a moment, and then he asked, “Did you start at 1?”
3. After putting her grandchildren to bed, a grandmother changed into old slacks and a droopy blouse and proceeded to wash her hair. As she heard the children getting more and more rambunctious, her patience grew thin. Finally, she threw a towel around her head and stormed into their room, putting them back to bed with stern warnings. As she left the room, she heard the three-year-old say with a trembling voice, “Who was THAT?”
4. A grandmother was telling her little granddaughter what her own childhood was like. “We used to skate outside on a pond. I had a swing made from a tire; it hung from a tree in our front yard. We rode our pony. We picked wild raspberries in the woods.” The little girl was wide-eyed, taking this all in. At last she said, “I sure wish I’d gotten to know you sooner!”
5. My grandson was visiting one day when he asked, “Grandma, do you know how you and God are alike?” I mentally polished my halo and I said, “No, how are we alike?” “You’re both old,” he replied.
6. A little girl was diligently pounding away on her grandfather’s word processor. She told him she was writing a story.
“What’s it about?” he asked.
“I don’t know,” she replied. “I can’t read.”
7. I didn’t know if my granddaughter had learned her colors yet, so I decided to test her. I would point out something and ask what color it was. She would tell me and was always correct. It was fun for me, so I continued. At last, she headed for the door, saying, “Grandma, I really think you should try to figure out some of these colors yourself!”
8. When my grandson Billy and I entered our vacation cabin, we kept the lights off until we were inside to keep from attracting pesky insects. Still, a few fireflies followed us in. Noticing them before I did, Billy whispered, “It’s no use Grandpa. Now the mosquitoes are coming after us with flashlights.”
9. When my grandson asked me how old I was, I teasingly replied, “I’m not sure.” “Look in your underwear, Grandpa,” he advised “Mine says I’m 4 to 6.” (WOW! I really like this one — it says I’m only ’38’!)
10. A second grader came home from school and said to her grandmother, “Grandma, guess what? We learned how to make babies today.” The grandmother, more than a little surprised, tried to keep her cool. “That’s interesting.” she said. “How do you make babies?” “It’s simple,” replied the girl. “You just change ‘y’ to ‘i’ and add ‘es’.”
11. Children’s Logic: “Give me a sentence about a public servant,” said a teacher. The small boy wrote: “The fireman came down the ladder pregnant.” The teacher took the lad aside to correct him. “Don’t you know what pregnant means?” she asked. “Sure,” said the young boy confidently. ‘It means carrying a child.”
12. A grandfather was delivering his grandchildren to their home one day when a fire truck zoomed past. Sitting in the front seat of the fire truck was a Dalmatian dog. The children started discussing the dog’s duties.
“They use him to keep crowds back,” said one child.
“No,” said another. “He’s just for good luck.”
A third child brought the argument to a close. “They use the dogs,” she said firmly, “to find the fire hydrants.”
13. A 6-year-old was asked where his grandma lived. “Oh,” he said, “she lives at the airport, and whenever we want her, we just go get her. Then, when we’re done having her visit, we take her back to the airport.”
14. Grandpa is the smartest man on earth! He teaches me good things, but I don’t get to see him enough to get as smart as him!
15. My Grandparents are funny, when they bend over, you hear gas leaks and they blame their dog.

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Unicorn Spit


I told you that my sister-in-law saw this kit, thought I might have fun with it, and sent it to me!  ( it’s okay to be envious of me… :0) )

Last night, while my husband was watching yet another ‘no-plot-everyone-shoots-each-other’ movie in the living room, I escaped to our office and started watching YouTube Demonstrations. I LOVE YouTube. You can find all kinds of information there, and SEE people showing you how to do things, such as ways to use Unicorn Spit!

So far, I’ve found out that you can use this on fabric, wood, metal, glass – you name it.  You can mix the colors before you use it, or just squeeze some on whatever you’re staining/painting and go for a tie-dyed effect. You can use it wet or dry. One lady was doing streaks of color, then spritzing the piece with water, covering it with saran wrap, spritzing the plastic, and then using her fingers to blend the colors. The final step on whatever you paint is SEALING. You can do this with polyurethane in any form, and I’ll look for a water-proofing stuff for fabrics.  The dried unicorn spit looks ‘chalky.’ Then you seal it, with the sealer bringing the colors to gorgeous life.

I’m going to continue watching demonstration videos today, but I am already getting over my  intimidation about trying something new, and ideas of what I could do are starting to rattle around in my head. I’m hoping to make time to play in my art room this afternoon, probably making a glorious mess, but enjoying myself tremendously!

I hope that YOUR Sunday is a happy one.


Filed under Childlike Fun, learning new things, playing in my art room



I just love this quote! It makes me smile each time I read it.

I received the first of two crayon melting tools I ordered in the mail today. I’ve watched a BUNCH of YouTube videos demonstrating what creative folks can do with melted crayons. I have NO experience, but LOTS of enthusiasm and ideas rattling around in my brain right now. I’m going to try to make time to get up to my art room and start playing and see what a mess I can make. :0)

This is the first of the two different styles I ordered. This is more like using a crayon/soldering iron, so it isn’t as intimidating as the bay clothes ironing style I saw. I’m excited about my new toy.

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Nicolas Chamfort-via Carla Stafford-LinkedIn

“The most wasted of all days is one without laughter.” 

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Lost again.

The $1 million-winning tickets were sold in Florida, Illinois, North Carolina, North Dakota, New Hampshire, New York (2) and South Carolina, but the main prize is still up.

The odds of winning the POWERBALL jackpot are 1 in 292,201,338.

Next drawing is Wednesday – $750 million …


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Zen to Zany via Cathy Ruggiero

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Zen to Zany via Cathy Ruggiero

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Snow People – Take 36

“Impaled on Tree” –



“Letterbox Disguise” –



“Shark Attack” –

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My Christmas Present to Me

I told you a few days ago that I fell in love with a “Cool Rat” online at Old Estate Art Gallery out of Thibodaux, Louisiana. When I saw him, I decided I HAD to have him. The lady who chatted with me and then took my information on the phone couldn’t have been nicer or more helpful. I’ve loved this store for several years, but they didn’t have an online presence until recently and weren’t set up to ship their merchandise.


I received him today and I couldn’t be more pleased. Just looking at him makes me grin. When I thought about putting him away once Christmas was over, I quickly decided to take him out of that category in my mind.


I have several shelves in the office above my computer area. I already had the little, totally flexible and pose-able teddy bear, and my ceramic and fabric “Fairy God Frog” there, and now the “Cool Rat” has joined the family of things that make me smile.

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Walt Streightiff via

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Bird Tracing Project

Since today is the first day of August, I’ve been dashing around doing lots of ‘stuff,’ like cleaning out the aquarium, washing and re-filling hummingbird feeders, using Rid-x, giving our animals their monthly meds, etc. I did manage to get the bird tracing transferred to my sketch book.


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I’m Having So Much FUN!


I’m having so much FUN this afternoon! About two months ago I saw an ad on Facebook (I know, but there it was) for a “light box” or “LED tracing board.” Since I’m currently trying to learn new techniques for adding fur and feathers to animals, being able to trace a few outlines and distinctive features of drawings or pictures I like and then being able to concentrate on the techniques for making feathers and fur more realistic in various media seems like a wonderful idea.

It doesn’t mean that I won’t continue to try to draw the animals and birds from scratch as time goes on, but – to be honest – I’m intimidated and it will take a while to work through that. With the light box or tracing board, I can bypass my insecurities, learn, and have fun!


This gives you an idea of what I ordered. It came today and I’m like a kid in a candy shop. It’s ultra thin and you plug it into your computer. There are three intensities of LED light settings.

I hooked it up, then ran upstairs to get my sketch book, tracing paper, carbon paper, pencils, plus my “Keys to Painting Fur & Feathers” edited by Rachel Rubin Wolf, and plopped down in front of my computer. I’ve now traced a bird and am now using carbon paper to transfer it to my sketch book. I have the outlines of two drawings I did years ago already in the sketch book. When I get several sketches (tracings) added, I can then concentrate on the suggestions for adding feathers to these beautiful creatures in colored pencils, watercolor, pastels, acrylics, pen & ink, and mixed media.

Here is my drawing of a kingfisher

And my drawing of a parrot

and this is the first step in the tracing of another bird I found that I like. This is being transferred to my sketch book using carbon paper.

I know this isn’t easy to see, but you can get the idea of what I’m doing.

I have to stop and get lunch for us now, but I’ll get back to this ASAP. :0)

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Filed under Cause for Celebration, Childlike Fun, doing what you love, drawings, Favorite Things, Hobbies, quality of life

The Truth Will Out

My husband and I go bowling once a week with our good friends. I love getting together, catching up on what has been happening the past week (or weeks if one of us has had to call bowling off for some reason). I enjoy the extra FUN exercise, too. It doesn’t really matter how well or poorly we bowl, we ALL look forward to going to Braumn’s afterwards and getting a scoop of our favorite ice cream. Sometimes the ice cream is to celebrate, but more often it’s helping us deal with another two games where we struggled to get over 100…

Last night was a special evening. Our friend, Laufrain, won the first game handily, bowling a 158! I love watching her bowl because she’s very dramatic. She is so delighted when she bowls a strike or gets a spare. Sometimes she’s really ‘on,’ as she was last night, and it’s a joy to celebrate each good throw with her.

A very rare occurrence happened in our second game: I won – and with a 174! I got several really SOLID strikes – something that never happens. My strikes are like trees falling in a forest – reluctantly. I even picked up a spare or two! I have to admit that I like to bowl whether I do well or not, but the truth is that doing well is SO much MORE fun! :0)

My husband, being the ‘balloon pricker’ he is – pointed out that I COULD have gotten into the “175 Club” if I’d gotten one more point, but I’m still smiling. It probably won’t happen again any time soon, so I’ll savor my victory – quietly…

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Mother, May I?

Healing with Art via Cathy Ruggiero


I planned to make glorious mistakes in my art room yesterday, since it was raining and I couldn’t work outside. Somehow, I couldn’t give myself permission to ignore some of the things that were staring at me inside our home that have been needing my attention. I ended up cleaning up the kitchen, getting the filing under control in the office, playing with the dogs, and the afternoon was gone.

I have a lot of fun in my art room. Much of the time I just enjoy looking at the nice supplies I have, thrilled at the potential! Sometimes I simply play, trying some new techniques, stirring the pot, getting my juices flowing.

I love it when I get an order for custom handmade cards, note cards, or stationery. I can combine my love of art supplies – all the colors – and smells – and FEELS – with the joy of playing, coming up with designs I hope my customer will love.  When I have an order, I drop everything else and concentrate on creation, my customer’s wishes foremost in my mind.

At times like THIS, when I don’t have an order, it’s harder to allow myself to take time off. I almost feel I’m playing the old childhood game of “Mother, May I?” I’m trying to convince myself that playing is essential, that no one cares if the living room has been vacuumed yesterday, today, or tomorrow, and that I get no ‘points’ for crossing everything off my ever-growing list. There is a strong inner voice, though, that keeps repeating what a slob I am – that I should have a clean, well-organized home at all times….

I think I will try to SQUASH that mean little voice  – maybe just for a while this afternoon – and let the joyous part of me play in the paint!

Mother, May I?


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Filed under Attitude, Childlike Fun, doing what you love, Hobbies

Definition of “Youth”

Robert Mallet via

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Fountain of Youth


“There is a fountain of youth: it is your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age.” ~ Sophia Loren

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Filed under Attitude, Childlike Fun, Creativity, Encouragement, Faces, Favorite Pictures, Favorite Quotes

Going Upstairs to Play

Nature of Art For Kids

After I take the doggies out again, I’m heading upstairs to play in my art room.

I received a suggestion that I do some thank you notes in the ‘thumb print” theme, but geared to boys, (“Thumbys”) since they need to write thank you notes, too, from time to time. It was also suggested that some “Thinking of You” cards in the same theme might be appreciated.

I hope that you are having some fun this afternoon, too!

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Louise Hay via Cathy Ruggiero

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The Eric Carle Museum of Pictures

It’s funny. Ever since I finished cleaning out years of accumulation in my art room, I’ve just looked at it, been pleased, and moved on. It’s almost as though the room belonged to someone else. I didn’t want to mess it up.

Today, since it’s too windy to even THINK about working with peat moss or vermiculite, I’m giving myself permission to play. I don’t know that I’ll come up with anything, but IT’S OKAY TO PLAY.

I hope that you have found something fun to do today, too.

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Cats and Flowers

One of my dear friends ordered two sets of hand-painted, personalized thank you notes recently – one with a cat theme and the other floral. I’ve had more fun doing this!


My friend knows my work. The cats will be silhouettes and cartoony and the flowers I paint are mostly ones that never were – except in my own mind. I’m spending a bit of time each day playing in my art room, trying to create thank you notes that will bring a smile or two.

Spending time there working on a project, trying to bring order out of chaos, or just experimenting, is just about the best time there is for me. The years fall away. Aches and pains fade. I’m totally absorbed, bopping to my music, surrounded by fun materials, with the only limitations my own imagination and ability. HEAVEN!


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