I Wonder Where Summer Went?

She was here for a couple of days earlier in the month, Lady Summer, but seems to have given way to a resurgent and surly Winter who still has something to say.

I used to call the city where I live ‘The Riviera of Antarctica’.  I had good reason for doing so, low rainfall in the extremes of the year and high sunshine hours too.    Lately though it seems we have been upgraded and now reside as the Capital of Antarctica.

There were, I was told a couple of days ago, four cruise ships coming into harbour to dispel their thousands of well-heeled patrons into our fair city to enjoy a day or two of Southern Hospitality.  (Please bear in mind I don’t read the papers or listen to the radio so all my gossipy news is picked up at the dog park, where I loiter around with a mismatch of folk while our pets chase each other round in ever decreasing circles in an attempt to keep warm.  So I may get actual facts slightly wrong.)   Anyway, they picked the wrong day to arrive.  For a ‘Weather Bomb’ also chose this time to put in an appearance.

Apparently old man Winter was really p***ed off about something and he hurled a few icicles our way along with torrential rain and winds that drove the rain horizontally against the landscape.   I spent yesterday with the heating on, tucked in a blanket watching the one hundred videos saved to my ‘watch later’ tab on You Tube and pretending I lived in the far north of Canada where I was enjoying a really pleasantly mild winter.

I have no idea what happened to the hundreds of well-heeled tourists, but I imagine they retreated back to their cruise liners and waited patiently to be taken to a more salubrious part of the world.  I did hear that one of the ships, an especially large one which sometimes has trouble making port due to time and tides and its immense size, nearly keeled over in the wind, but that might just be an unfounded rumour.

Just bear all this in mind if you ever meet somebody who says they went to New Zealand one summer, had a cold and miserable time and the hurricane level winds almost caused their gigantic ship to capsize. They were probably on that particular liner.

Any way, with all this inclement summer weather I’ve spent a deal of time playing about in the art room and trying to find my painting mojo again.

I made cards.  I cleaned up and cleared out THE STASH….  We crafters never throw anything away because it  can be used on something, somewhere, one day.  I have stuff I’ve kept for ten years or more and, as I’ve cleared out everything else in my tiny house, it’s now time to clear out some of the ‘someday stuff’ that makes up a lot of THE STASH.  I figure that if I live to be 100 and make a card every day, I still won’t have used up all the stuff lurking about in that pile of ‘someday I might be just what you are looking for’  stuff.  So, I used a lot teeny bit of that stuff on the cards I made, which slowed me down no end and made me realise why I’d never actually used it up before.   I’d spend so much time sifting through piles of stuff I’d forget what I wanted it for by the time I found it.

To be honest, I was also prevaricating.  Delaying the actual moment when I would start work on an actual canvas…….  it’s always so terrifying for me – I wonder if it is so for every other person who paints.

Any -hoo, back to the cards, here’s a selection of cards ready for next Christmas  – made using the same embossing folder and different paper remnants, some worked, some didn’t……

Hisilicon K3

Hisilicon K3

Hisilicon K3

The onto the stash scraps and bits and pieces.  Small note cards to start

Hisilicon K3

Large greeting cards, all made using my hand made papers and various ‘stash’ items

Hisilicon K3

Hisilicon K3

Hisilicon K3

Hisilicon K3

In between card making I spent some time acting as Chief Consultant and Shopping Assistant to my daughter, the Official Photographer who is doing up her new flat and who had decided she wanted a ‘pinkish’ bedroom.

We made the headboard and used that as the jumping off point for what ever came next.  While we were busily attending to the fiddly bits, young Sidd-Arthur was also busy making sure the bed was nice and comfortable for her…… that’s his rear end you are looking at

siddy-nesting-1

Furiously digging his way through duvet, sheets and pillows

siddy-nesting-2

Thoroughly rumpled and immensely satisfied

siddy-nesting-4

Sigh!  So funny!  Pure gorgeous furriness!

I managed some sketching.  The last two while I was keeping warm and indulging in that ‘Watch Later’ channel on You Tube I mentioned earlier

Hisilicon K3

Hisilicon K3

The birds got doodled in when I tired of sketching in wrinkles…..

And finally – I have to tell you – finally, I did some work on canvas…….. it’s not finished yet, but it’s a good start.  Oh the relief!!

Unfinished 'Believe'

Unfinished ‘Believe’

So, that’s January up to date.  How’s your January going?

Thanks for coming by today, I love that you did!

 

 

 

 

 

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69 thoughts on “I Wonder Where Summer Went?

  1. Oh no! I was so surprised that I missed this “loverly” post!! You shock and amaze me with so many new items to see! I loved your daughter’s room decor and think you are such a special Mum, helping her and bringing your source of sunshine and bed ruffling Siddy!
    I am proud of your beautiful cards and wondered did you donate your “Stash” to a local art teacher? I used to have a few tubs of stuff like you included, ribbons, flowers and bits and ends. I had to downsize into a one bedroom apartment, so my bin got given away at my garage sale as did almost a hundred books.i have lived in my apt for 10 years but I am needing a decluttering project. Only if I could do this again. One of these days, I need to get around to grabbing clothes, junk and giving it to Goodwill or local thrift shops. 🙂
    Your lovely cards for Christmas and other notes are wonderful. Good luck in your continued and ongoing projects and soon: you will be painting again! ❤ Hugs to you, Siddy and Orlando. xo

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  2. Wow! You’ve been busy! I need you to come to my house and make things out of my Stash. I’m not quite as creative as you (which might be why I have such a huge Stash). Love your cards, your sketches, and your unfinished Believe. Beautiful. 🙂

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  3. Wow! That was a bumper post! Lots of lovely lovely pics and cards. Especially love the one with the cat on, and of course always great to see Siddy. Give him a hug for me. Very cold here too – we even almost had snow.

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  4. I’d say the weather is conducive to your creativity. Look at all you’ve done! I particularly like the red-toned Happy Birthday card with the cat and butterflies. It feels happy and hopeful, just like a birthday should feel. I love that you don’t watch TV or listen to the news. I went years in this condition, too, after Bush I and the first Iraq incursion. It was too much and I opted out of the whole horror show. Then this year I was drawn back in by the US election and now I’m trying to back out again. I think the dog park is the best place to get the news and I’ll follow your example.

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    • 🙂 I love it when I save someone from the news trap. Isn’t it good to live without the sound bites of celebrity, fear mongering and general horror. I’ll opt back in when there is a balance that shares the good that happens in the world along with genuine tragedies. The card you like was the result of a serendipitous dip into the stash box that brought out some cats, a bag of tiny butterflies and some branches, it’s one of my favourites too. The card below was made from the left overs.

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  5. Well you are grumbling about crazy summer weather and here in Ohio its a roller coaster winter. Today 17C Monday freezing again. Art, cards, headboard…all so beautiful!!! I like the idea of you loitering in the park….best place to be when in need of gossip! Sid Arthur is a star!!xo Johanna

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    • Hello Johanna! I decided today I should probably stop grumbling about the weather and be grateful for all the water – after all, we can’t live without water and a lot of the world has a serious shortage 🙂

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  6. Well, no wonder your blog posting has been sporadic of late…you’ve been so busy! How satisfying to find all those bits and bobs you’d been stashing away and put them to creative use. And your painting is coming a long a treat. The key as we all know, is to keep at it but, as we also all know, that’s easier said than done. Perhaps your ghastly weather was sent to especially help drive you inside to get productive. Who knows what magic is a foot. (Can you tell I’m doing Macbeth again – fair is foul, etc 😀).
    And who can resist a picture of the adorable Siddy? Lovely post Pauline, more crafts please xx

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    • I’m not really ‘busy’ Jenny – more just pottering about and stuff materialises. In what manner are you ‘doing’ Macbeth? I recently saw a documentary about Judi Dench and her wonderful interpretation of the Lady. I know I’m shallow – but say ‘Macbeth’ and I respond ‘Double, double, toil and trouble; Fire burn and cauldron bubble…’ I’m trying to keep at the painting because it gets lost so easily and I keep having to go back to square one and start all over. This is why I keep painting heads! 🙂

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      • Doing Macbeth? It’s back on the GCSE curriculum so I’m supporting our nurture group as we unpick the themes and treachery. We have eight students between two of us and I don’t think Shakespeare has ever been so much fun. The kids are loving it!

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          • Let’s not get too excited. Shakespeare has never left the curriculum thankfully. It’s the creative arts that are suffering big time. Apparently there is a shortage of scientists. Don’t they realise that scientists are creative, too?

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              • Oops, didn’t mean to sound like a school marm but wouldn’t it be great if they that set the curriculum actually came and spoke to those of us at the coal face, so to speak…😉

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                • You didn’t sound like a school marm at all. I was thinking it would be great to be a fly on the wall when you grilled them about the split between the sciences and the creative arts and why they think the two never meet…… 🙂
                  As to the rest of your question – that was one of the things that drove me out of education- the sheer shortsighted stupidity of those political personages who think they know what education should be and don’t know that they are stunting human creativity and potential. Oooh, that was today’s little rave 🙂

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  7. Beautiful cards and art work. Siddy is just the cutest! The tourists were lucky to be dockside and not on the open sea for the weather event. We’re having a very mild winter. I love snow and we really haven’t had much to speak of.

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  8. What a fun visit I’ve had here today. Miss hearing from you. You and YD did a superb job on the headboard. Quite splashy and alive. Pink is probably the one color I have no real fondness for. I like the coral, peachy version better and have just discovered I love the soft sea blue/green. It gives me such a peaceful feel. Siddy made my day with his head burrowed under the pillows. I would probably squeeze him senseless if I were there. As for clearing out, It’s a struggle. I have a huge bag of fabric to pass on but it must go to someone who will make good use of it. Gave a box to my former SIL and she has let it languish too. Filled my suburban twice this month with things to donate and another load on the way out. Craft room, still full of (s crap) but sorting through that as well. Your cards are, as Jill said, SUPERB and then some. I love the little pearls on one and of course like you, I’m a butterfly nut. I’d bet you’s sell hundreds if you put photos of Siddy on the front. 🙂 It looks like little buttons on one. I love everyone of them. So happy you got yourself back to the painting. I have the same struggles with quilting. I find myself scrubbing down the kitchen when I know I need to go tackle that square. Vision loss is making it more difficult so even though I want to complete it, I know it’s not always going to be easy. Which is where I’m headed right now. I’m sorry about your off weather. It’s hitting everyone this year but wind is the worst. Dangerous. Giant squishy hugs, M

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    • Are the eyes getting no better Marlene? That must be very challenging – we need them to make stuff with! Thank you for your close examination of everything, you can biggify them for easier viewing too, do you do that? i know the kitchen cleaning exercise as prevarication very well 😀 xoxo

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      • I do biggify everything I can. And the eyes are worse than ever. Not sure what to do about it because no one seems to know or admit why. I’ll cope. I can still see and will continue to create, just a little slower and make larger things. 🙂 Love seeing your beautiful artwork.

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        • Nothing wrong with making larger things Marlene, it’s the making that makes us happy, yes? I still haven’t done anything with the little blue pieces you sent as suggested earrings. I really liked that idea but then realised that, as I haven’t worn them for years, my ears have healed over. They sit to the side on my desk and I admire them and ponder ………. The bookmark marks my place in the book beside my bed. xoxo

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          • The earrings can be softened more with more washing. You can use it on a card or any way you like. They were an experiment. I have some here too that I’m looking at as well. 😉 I wanted to make some dream catcher earrings but I can see that the pattern will be too large. Hope the weather is warming for you a bit. Hugs.

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  9. I enjoyed your getting back to work saga. At first I was confused by your account of winter in NZ (because surely it’s midsummer there now) until I remembered that my brother and sister-in-law stayed there a couple of summers ago and said it was lovely but not much different from Scotland – especially the weather. I can totally identify with your STASH problem. In a much earlier part of my life I earned a sort-of living by sewing. I have many boxes of carefully sorted scraps of material because you never know when… Love the cards especially the butterfly ones. And well don for getting back to the canvas – I have opened and started fiddling with the long-neglected next novel.

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    • ‘Fiddling’ is always the first step isn’t it. Doesn’t matter what we create, it seems it starts tentatively and then at some stage just flows ……. Winter is a grand time for getting into the flow. February is when summer seems to prefer arriving here nowadays. As soon as the summer holidays are done and school and work starts up again the heat sets in. Don’t visit here til mid February, March and early April. There’s a sketch Billy Connolly did years ago about why the Scots chose to settle in Dunedin and not a more clement part of the country, it’s very apt! If I ever find it i’ll post it 🙂

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  10. Wow–I think awful weather must suit you! What a lot you’ve been doing! The cards are lovely–I especially like the ones with cats, of course. And that foolish, funny dog–guaranteed to make us all smile with his silliness. And you should be very proud of yourself that you pushed through the trepidation and actually painted–your style is SO distinctive, so much your own!

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    • Thank you Kerry, it is always heartening to hear ones style is recognisable. I liked making the cat cards, I must do it more often, they look so much more elegant than foolish fat puppies don’t they 🙂 Weather is improving today, fingers crossed!

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  11. Wow! You’ve been a busy lady, Pauline. I hope your allowing some cuddle time with my pal, Siddy. I’ve missed that sweet face. ❤ I'll admit, after reading your post, I scrolled through your lovely photos three times. The greeting cards are superb! I always love your color choices. Hugs!

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  12. well get you! Very productive I’d say. The cards are just lovely. The books are in the post btw. January has been very frosty – minus 2 out there and it’s 10 am. Mylo enjoys his coat though my opinion of dogs and coats is largely unprintable. i’m being pretty domestic as Linda is in her last year of her textile degree writing a dissertation on affluenza while the kids are abroad and I’m in charge of works on their flat. Still Buster & Moo, the next book is with the editor for a final run through, the cover options will be posted this weekend for everyone’s opinions and I’m pulling together last years short fiction and flash into an anthology. No new writing, well not novel wise but that’s for Feb!

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    • Crikey – you aren’t standing still! I just wrote a comment encouraging you to put the family stories into a novel, I really, really like the idea, maybe you can dash that off in March? 🙂 I had to look up ‘affluenza’. Yikes, there’s an interesting dissertation! (I’m intrigued by how it slots into a textile degree.) Siddy has a coat, a present from his doting ‘Aunty D’. He doesn’t much care for it 🙂

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  13. You have done a lot of artwork in one month. I especially like your birthday cards, the one with the little girl on is super cute!
    The weather is really unseasonal here in Oslo, Norway as well. Still no snow, or minus C, or at least not so much. But I don’t complain;-)
    Hope you will get summer soon!

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    • Thank you for coming by and commenting, it is lovely to see you 🙂 It’s hard to believe you have no snow in Norway at this time of the year! I’m sure it must be a welcome treat for you. Perhaps we will both get the correct weather in February. Let’s say ‘yes’ to that! 🙂

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  14. Well, the weather might have been unseasonal but something good did come out of it. Your cards are lovely, Pauline. Here, January has been hot hot hot. ( I don’t mean to rub it in) We have had several heat waves with day after day more than five degrees above average temperatures and very warm nights. It’s not often here on top of the mountain that we can leave the windows open overnight but that’s what we’ve been doing all month.

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    • All my Australian friends are saying the same thing Carol. All that heat is sweeping out into the Tasman, detouring via Ross Station and returning here to dump the evaporation, now frozen, onto us. Thanks a lot 🙂 Having said that, today is warm, sunny, windless and dry. So far. Shhhhh.

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  15. Pauline, It’s wonderful to see a blog post from you! I’m happy to see you’re crafting again, and congratulations on the painting. She’s quite wistful and beautiful. I’m often temporarily paralyzed before jumping in to a new creative endeavor. For me, some of it is fear of ruining my medium. A lot of it is worry that I won’t be able to transfer the ideas in my head into a reality. I suspect this is a common occurrence among creative folks. It ususually feels good once you get going. I’m happy to see so many Christmas cards. What a terrific idea using up what you have. I’m enamored with your application of color, both on the canvas and in the cards. I like that richness of color.

    As for your weather, it’s hard to imagine a more miserable summer. Icicles? Good grief, Pauline. It’s unimaginable to think the summer could be so bad that it is enough to tip a cruise ship on its side. Is it any wonder Siddy is burrowing under the covers? He manages to look adorable no matter what he is doing. What an amazing companion you’ve found in that sweet, little dog.

    xo

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    • Hello Alys ❤ The sun has returned today and so far there is no wind or sign of rain cloud – fingers crossed. I'm happy to hear you like my colour choices, it has to be said i'm never that enthralled doing monochromatic or even earthy toned work. Give me the brights 🙂 You are so right about my little dog. Danella was reminding me the other day of how she witnessed that he chose me and her confusion when I said i wasn't at all sure I should adopt him. It was a done deal for him – and her. I'm glad I finally caught on 🙂 He is my little canine Buddha, reminding me to live every moment as joyfully as possible ❤

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      • Hurray for the return of the sun. It’s pouring here so thanks for lobbing it this way. Here’s your slogan Pauline: Bright is Right! I remember the story of Siddy choosing you, and I mean, who wouldn’t? Lindy chose Chris, by reaching her paw through the cage and grabbing on to his sleeve. I’ll never forget it. LCB: Little Canine Buddha, you are a gift. xo

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        • ‘LCB’ and ‘Bright is Right’ 😀 It’s wonderful to have our memories of our little friends making their choices known isn’t it! I’m feeling so proud of my American friends right now I can’t help but see a brighter, righter tomorrow! (‘Righter’ not literally 😀 )

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  16. Gosh you have been very busy indeed, Pauline! The cards are great. I love the verdigris effect on one of your Christmas cards in particular. My favourite though is the one with the splash of hot pink and the line of turquoise. I love that combination.

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  17. You have been busy! I’m sorry about the inhospitable weather. It has been unseasonably warm here, supposed to rain for the inaugural, which, like all inaugurals, is causing all manner of transportation woes. Siddy is so cute, burrowing into the bedclothes. I like your cards, especially the first Christmas card and the cards with butterflies. I know what you mean about keeping things you might use. I have a couple jars of buttons, some extras for clothes I no longer have. It feels good to clear out, doesn’t it? I’m building up toward a major one soon, but this weekend,I’m choosing the flooring for the kitchen this weekend. I hope it warms up soon. It should be full summer for you now!

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    • Flooring!! How exciting. My eldest is having a bamboo floor laid throughout their ground floor, it will be just fabulous for them. Once that new kitchen is in, you will want to freshen up the entire apartment 🙂 I have buttons too – some for clothes that I had when I lived in the UK 26 years ago 🙂 Thank you for the feedback on your favourite cards – I like to hear what different folk like. I’m expecting the weather to improve very soon, fingers crossed. I hope nothing too awful happens with the inauguration. I’ll be thinking of you!

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  18. I used to be fascinated when Ju made cards. Out would come all these drawers of stuff that looked like it needed another house to fit in.And still we bought things when we went out.
    Your cards are lovely Pauline as are your sketches.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

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    • It’s wonderful that your Ju was a card maker too David. And it is so odd that despite having entire rooms full of stuff, more has to be bought on every foray out to the shops………. The crafter’s curse! Thanks for coming by, it’s always great to see you.

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  19. Since we installed the drip irrigation in Sanctuary, we haven’t really done much. Steve became vegan and gave up booze and has had a bad cold for over a week now. You don’t often hear about people adopting healthier habits and being sicker than they were prior to their efforts but hopefully he will be better soon as we only have 2 weeks till we head back to TAFE and learn how to make movies. Loving your art Ms Pauline. You are one talented girl and young Sid Arthur knows his onions. Earl does exactly the same thing when faced with an unrumpled bed. I think they feel like it is their personal duty to fix it 😉

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    • I hear that complaint all the time Fran – it’s a result of the body detoxing. He’ll be better than a new one when he gets all the gunk gone. 🙂 Only two more weeks of freedom and back into the classroom? Goodness, that went by in a flash. I think you both deserve a bit of a break after all the hard work you did earlier. i hope it is all growing well and you are just picking the harvests and enjoying them.

      I hadn’t thought about the bed-work of Siddy in that way before. i suspect you are exactly right 🙂 When I’m getting ready for bed I quite often pull the duvet open, stack up the pillows then go and clean my teeth. The idea being that when I return I can leap into bed, snuggle into the stack of pillows and open my book ….. When I come back the stack of pillow has been mostly dismantled and my side of the bed has been thoroughly dug out. xo

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  20. Oh Pauline, you are having a wintry snap! We are having a heat wave. I think I’m melting! The heat obviously didn’t make it over the Tasman. You post would be hilarious if it wasn’t so chilly. The Riviera of Antarctica is a great description. Those poor people on the liners. I thought “summer” would be a good time to visit NZ.
    I’m pleased you got some art work done, though. Thank you for sharing it. It’s always so great to get a peek. I love your new header. I find the cards very appealing. As you know, blue is my favourite colour and the butterflies just make me smile.
    It was great to see the pink purchases for your daughter’s bedroom. Siddy obviously approves. Your other sketches are coming along nicely too, as is your canvas work (in the header as well). Believe is a great title for it. She has that look in her eyes. And to think you did these watching YouTube videos!
    Thanks for sharing. 🙂

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    • Thank you Norah 🙂 Summer is a good time to visit, it’s just that it hasn’t come yet. The people who know assure me she will be here next month……… And if the temperature climbs above 24 I’ll probably melt. I really don’t know how you manage living in the tropics as you do.

      We share that favourite colour – I have so much blue in my stash – I have to make sure I use other colours and paint in other colours………. I tried not to use blue in this painting, but it snuck in 🙂 Thank you as ever for coming by xo

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      • Twenty-four is a pleasant temperature. I melt! Summer is not my favourite time of year, but nine months of the year are generally perfect, so three not so good is okay (except when they’re here!).
        How can you avoid blue? I couldn’t! I’m pleased you include it. Thanks. 🙂

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