Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Diva #265 - stripes

Here are my Diva tiles for this week.

Getting healthy

There's been a bit going on in my world lately.

For a start, I have added some new pages to my blog. One of the pages is called No More Excuses. That's my health improvement mini-blog, or blog within a blog? 

After spending a week at a health retreat, I've come back home determined to make changes to improve my health. One of the changes is to follow a specific exercise plan and not just say that I'm going to exercise more. As part of that, I got early yesterday and did a half hour weights session on my back deck while this morning I went for a jog/power walk. 

See more here.

Travel to the Snowy Mountains

Another addition to my blog is a page about travelling to the Snowy Mountains last weekend. 

The purpose of the trip was to get out of town for a short break, have some fun driving, do some bush walking, and reconnect with some favourite places. We I had not intended was to get lost on a bush walk or to struggle through thigh high scrub to rejoin a walking trail but that's what happened. I found it stressful but the Husband loves this sort of off-track exploring. Mmmmm.

We stayed at Bimblegumbie. It has the most amazing garden, complete with unusual sculptures. And yes, they are urinals below.

See more here.

Have a good week and thanks for supporting my blog.

Miss L

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Diva #264 - spring

This week's Diva challenge was to incorporate Spring into our tiles by using a spring-like string.

Today I produced 3 tiles for the challenge. I'm on school holidays at the moment so in theory I had the time. However, I had, and still have, quite a bit of marking to do before school returns. Drawing won out this afternoon.

I took a broader approach to the spring theme with my first tile. I also took inspiration from the many Tanglers who colour their tiles with watercolours first. Here's my first tile.

Features Blooming Butter, Festune and Pepper

In my second tile I continued to play with water colours, using blues and greens which are more usual colours for me compared to the yellows and oranges above. This tile I used a similar spring string to what the Diva used.

Features: Zander, Pixioze and Printemps

Finally, I thought I'd go colour-free. My twist was to use Tangles starting with the letter B. No reason for this other that than I liked what I saw when I found Beadlines.

Features: Beadlines, Bunzo and Blips

Other Zentangle drawing

This week I've been playing around with the new string 205 from Tanglepatterns. I'll get around to posting my tiles later in the week (have to get that marking done first!).

Here's my favourite attempt.

What I'm doing this week

* continuing to exercise and eat better. Have a look at my Diva post for last week to see what it was like to spend a week at a health resort.  I recommend it to anyway who needs a total break from routine.

* catching up with a friend. We are combining our usual walk and talk with a cardio workout. There are cardio exercise stations along one of the paths we take. I hope to be able to walk without groaning afterwards.

* reading Game of Thrones. I only started reading it a week ago. Very hard to put down.

* making air dry clay pots with my son, BoyBoy. He's doing ceramics at college (year 11) so we're getting in some practice time at home.

* taking BoyBoy for driving lessons. He is eligible for his provisional licence in about 2 months. He won't be ready by then but that's OK.

* looking forward to a night away and lots of country/alpine driving and bushwalking with the Husband this weekend.

* marking, marking, planning and marking.

Have a good week and thanks for dropping by.

Miss L

Friday, 15 April 2016

Diva #263 - globe grid

Diva Challenge #263

This week's Diva Challenge has reminded me my I participate in online Zentangle challenges - to broaden my understanding of this art form. I have never seen a globular grid before and certainly never tried to use one.

My 'tile' this week is ZIA as I've used an A4 sheet of paper rather than a Zentangle tile or Zendala. My tile intentionally looks a bit like planets. That's because I've been away at a health and fitness retreat called Solar Springs for the past week. Get envious right about now.

It's a string thing challenge #140

My tile for this week is a rush job. I like it though. Tangles are Hollibaugh, Poke Leaf and Copala.

Solar Springs Health retreat

This was my first time staying at a health retreat and I didn't know what to expect of the day to day experience or what I'd get out of the week. I hoped to refocus on getting fit and to have a pleasant break from cooking diner for my family.

A typical day for me was to get up at 7am in time for the 7.15 stretch class. I then had breakfast from 8am. At 9am I'd board the mini bus with other guests and go for an hour and a half bush walk in the nearby Morton National Park. Come back for a session of aqua fit (aqua fit is a serious workout!). Shower, read for a bit then have lunch. Read or draw for a bit then have a beauty treatment at 2 or 3 - a massage one day, a manicure another). Maybe go a walk in the afternoon or do a yoga class before dinner. Sit in the lounge for a chat with the other guests then bed. 

I ended up getting what I hoped to but so much more than that. I had a significant emotional break through early in the week followed by this incredible sense of well being. I'm feeling strong again. Strong and powerful and in control.  

The week was also filled with laughter and companionship. This came from the staff as well as from the other guests. While I travelled to the retreat on my own, I wasn't on my own there. So many lovely people to chat to or laugh with. 

I thoroughly recommend doing this sort of thing for yourselves.

A shout out to the girls from Solar Springs - does dancing and singing in the car on the Hume Hwy count as cardio? And that custard tart you caught me eating in town was delicious!

Here are photos from my week of drawing while relaxing.

Tangling in the quiet room

Posing (?) for the camera  on a morning bush walk

Have a great week everybody. If you drop by, leave a comment and say hi.


Miss L

Sunday, 10 April 2016

IAST #139

Here are my tiles.

The first one is dreadful but the second is pretty good.

Miss L

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Diva #262 - UMT Fasset

I've got a few things to write about this week. Here are my tiles for this week's Diva challenge first.

I thought I'd find this challenge easy as I've used Fasset a lot in the past. Not today. My head is in a weird place so my ideas have not translated onto the page. This is what I managed this evening.

My health

Thanks for all the kind comments and concerns about my health. It is very touching to have people from all around the world show concern for me. 

My health got worse but is now improving. Long story short: I ended up with severe asthma for the last few days. I had a severe attack at work on Thursday. My lovely, amazing colleagues looked after me, got me sorted and home. Spent the weekend on oral steroids (horrible, horrible things) and preventer and Ventolin. 

I was back at school today. I managed OK but this is going to be a long week. I'll pace myself and be gentle with myself and my students. Only a couple of days and then 2 weeks of school holidays.

Mother-daughter bonding over kittens

Last weekend Moo and I spent some time helping a carer with kittens. The carer has 4 kittens on hand at the moment and she needed some help socialising them. 

Moo and I volunteered. For other people, spending an hour with little kittens would be a nightmare but Moo and I adore cats and kittens. Actually, I like all critters with the exception of most insects and most spiders. I could happily work in a zoo but I think I'd get into trouble for wanting to pat everything.

Here are photos of myself with 3 of the kittens and a photo of my darling Moo with the same set. Kitten number 4 was hiding.

Other Tangling

I regularly participate in Adele Bruno's It's a String Thing challenge (see link on my home page). Here's what I did for last week's challenge. 

I did some more stacked tiles, following on from last week's Diva challenge. I was so inspired by what other people had drawn that I had do some more myself. (One of the tiles on the stack is faux - can you spot it?). The background tile is a normal Zentangle tile that I coloured. 

Taking a break

I will away next week so will be late joining the Diva challenge. I've got 5 nights at a health and wellness retreat. I'm going on my own. No friends or family. Just me.

I'll be joining exercise classes, doing laps in the pool, participating in evening meditation sessions, having a few spa treatments and drawing. 

Have a good week and thanks for dropping by.

Miss L

Sunday, 3 April 2016

It's a string thing #138

The challenge for this week was to design a tile using Citrus as the string.

I had fun with this week’s challenge. It got my creative (citrus) juices flowing. In my first tile I used a tile within a tile, which is a technique I’ve seen others use but not used myself. Tangles used were Ansu, B’tweed, Hollibaugh, Tipple, Printemps and Poke Leaf. I used water colour pencils for the colour.

I was all set to email this to Adele when I noticed her step out for Warped Eggs. That tangle caused me lots of trouble last week but I was tempted to try again. So, I did another tile. This time I used a Renaissance tile with the Tangles that I learnt when I first started on this Zentangle journey. They are Hollibaugh, Knightsbridge, Crescent Moon, Tipple, Paradox, Paushalov and Tagh. Warped Eggs is the background. 

Finally, I’ve attached a photo of my mandarin tree. It is Autumn here in Canberra so the fruit is large and getting ready to ripen. We’ve had this tree for about 12 years. This year looks like giving us the largest fruit we’ve had. Maybe my harsh pruning after the fruit set did the trick?

Have a good week.

Miss L