29 April 2019

The New York Botanical Garden

For several years now, a trip to the New York Botanical Garden has been a personal rite of spring.  It must be the anticipation of warmer weather and witnessing the miracle of growth.

Here are the flowering plants that I most look forward to:

Cherry Blossoms 

Magnolia Trees 


A visit to the conservatory is also a must. It's picture perfect on the outside.

And there's lots to see inside and the temperature feels more tropical, allowing a condusive environment for these plants:

It's also where the annual Orchid Show takes place. Orchids from all over the world, in every size, shape, and color!

Being surrounded by these blooms have only inspired me to capture them in watercolor:

watercolor, watercolor flowers, art journal, travel journal, watercolor painting, how to paint orchids

watercolor, watercolor flowers, art journal, travel journal, watercolor painting, how to paint orchids
Here's wishing everyone a beautiful spring!

24 April 2019

A New Locket

Today is my Papa's first birthday in heaven.

To deal with sadness, I've always turned to crafting. 

crafts for healing, healing crafts, crafts to make when experiencing a loss
I made this locket when my Mama passed away 2 years ago. It has a photo of her and my Papa on their wedding day. The photo below it shows me and my Mama. I think she was very radiant in these photos.

crafts for healing, healing crafts, crafts to make when experiencing a loss
I added a new locket, this time showing me and my Papa. There's also a family photo of us before my brothers came along.  

crafts for healing, healing crafts, crafts to make when experiencing a loss
I cherish these old photos that show our happy times as a family.

crafts for healing, healing crafts, crafts to make when experiencing a loss
And I carry them close to my heart. 

22 April 2019

A Sticker Coloring Book

When coloring books for adults first came out, I was on the fence about the idea. I thought the lines were too narrow and there were too many details to fill in compared to a child's coloring book. But I tried it out and I got hooked. 

Coloring the fine details promoted focus and mindfulness. And that's what every adult needs in a busy world. When I need to pause and do something artsy but non-commital, I'd choose a page and "color". My preferred materials are watercolor or colored pencils.

But I found this option: 

A coloring page using stickers!

It's similar to "paint by numbers" but instead of paint, you use the corresponding stickers. Just match the sticker to its number on the blank page.

Here's the first piece I completed...TADA!

It's quick to finish and if you make a mistake, the sticker peels off and can be repositioned.

These are "roses" on the label. But they look like peonies, too.

They can easily add life to an empty wall in an office. Just stick them on with washi tape, or they can be framed as a series.

These also make good gifts -- the sticker books or the completed pages. There are many options at the bookstore or on-line shops.

As for these sticker remnants? I'm not about to throw them away just yet.

I'll make smaller stickers with a hole punch.

And cut out geometric shapes.

And stick them on a clothing tag (the labels that are attached to new clothes).

It now has new life as a bookmark...TADA!

Here's another one made from cardboard and stickers cut out in petal shapes. As an option, finish it off with a layer of Mod Podge to keep the stickers in place.

To be used for all the books you have, or to share with another booklover...TADA!

21 April 2019

Happy Easter

Isn't this topiary adorable? I think it would be a pretty addition if you had a large garden...everyone in the neighborhood would go crazy!

May you all have a wonderful Easter!

15 April 2019

Easter Eggs for Entertaining

Hi guys! Maybe you're already making plans for Easter. If you're setting up an Easter brunch, might I suggest how to decorate the table?

It involves plain eggs decorated with paint. I'm using the blues but you're welcome to chose your own color story.

Instead of a large centerpiece, why not have an Easter egg on each place setting:

You can personalize it with the guest's name, like a place card, and they can take the eggs home as a party favor. TADA!

08 April 2019

Greeting Cards for Travel

What are the odd things you like to take with you when you travel? 

I like to bring stationery with me.  And I pack it in this little kit...TADA! 

The sleeve was once home to notecards. I saved it because it's clear (to easily spot its contents), compact (carries what I need), and the plastic material protects all the paper inside. 

Here are some of the cards that I included in my kit:

Thank you cards to express appreciation to hosts and other gracious people I meet while traveling.

Personalized cards for an extra special touch.

Blank cards that can easily turn into "Happy Birthday", "Congratulations" or "I'm thinking of you" greeting cards.

I included a favorite writing pen and some envelope seals.

A glue pen (to close the envelopes) and some postage stamps are handy, too.

Pack everything up and add it to your suitcase.

Pack A Letter Writing Kit whenever you travel
With a kit like this, it's easy to keep in touch the old school way wherever you are in the world...TADA!

01 April 2019

Handmade Birthday Cards

One of the things I find truly satisfying is sending out birthday cards. It tells my friends that they are thought about fondly on their special day. And over the years, my friends have told me that this small gesture is appreciated. And that is just TADA!   

Instead of buying ready-made, I like crafting these cards. Each year, I pretend I'm a designer and make a "collection." Below are some of the ones I sent out last year. The theme was "golden spring." They are made of gold-foil cards dressed up with flowers, watercolor paintings, and pastel-colored ephemera. I love springtime as a jumping off point because isn't that what birthdays are about -- fresh beginnings?


It's not a designer label but it tells a story of a handmade touch. TADA!

And incidentally, April is "National Letter Writing Month". Let's write more cards and letters and keep snail mail alive!