Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Toasting you and Planting Panseys

Welcome. I am so glad that you stopped by. Please join me for a cup of tea so we can toast the New Year together and look for inspiration for a pansy painting.

" Here's to the bright New Year, and a fond farewell to the old: here's to the things that are yet to come, and to the memories that we hold"

We have had very cold weather in Southern California and most of the flowers in my garden have gone to sleep for the winter and the roses have been cut back. The bright spots in our California gardens are our pansies. They do not mind frost and cold nights and their cheerful happy faces always make me smile.

Let's take Bentley, my helpful studio assistant into the garden and look for pansy inspirations.

Finding Inspiration . . . . .

"A New Year is unfolding - like a blossom with petals curled tightly concealing the beauty within". Anonymous.

Here . . . . . . .

There . . . . .

Everywhere . . . .

Looks like Bentley found our inspiration.

The pots of pansies, seed packets and bulbs on my potting bench are just waiting for me to paint.

The completed painting inspired by my day in the garden planting "winter pansies".

Thank you for stopping by for a visit. I love hearing from you and sincerely appreciate all of you who visit , leave me comments and follow my blog. Please leave me a comment or send me an e-mail if you have any questions or would like to see me paint something special.

Sending you warm wishes for a Joyful New Year and a lovely week. Blessings, Erin

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Cottage Christmas Part II

Welcome. I am so glad that you stopped by. It is hard to believe that Christmas is less than a week away. Would you like to take a little break and join me for a cup of hot tea and relax for a few minutes? We will look for inspiration to paint one more Welcome sign for my niece. She is the Director of Child Development at a Lutheran School and I have been painting Christmas Welcome signs for her to hang on the doors of the Children's school rooms. I have a snowman sign in mind in a winter garden setting with birdhouses.

Finding Inspiration

Here . . . .

There . . . .

Looks like Bentley, my Studio Assistant, has found some inspiration.

Everywhere . . . . .

Here is the finished sign with birdhouses and Snow Men/Ladies.

Now that we finished the little sign, let's grab a jacket and take a little stroll around the neighborhood to look at some adorable cottages before we walk around Balboa Island and enjoy some of the charming cottages and Christmas decorations.

Now we are off to Balboa Island, a charming island located on the beautiful Newport Bay. There is a sidewalk around the Island and it is such a delightful place to walk and "look-see" at the cottages.

Bentley loves walking around the Island - there are lots of dogs for him to visit.

Bentley and the adorable Scottie really hit it off.

He was sad to see Bentley leave.

I love this weathered blue cottage and hand painted Santa.

Parking on the Island is very tight and lots of the Islander's own cute little vehicles that are easy to park.

This is one of my favorite cottages (a rather big cottage). The house is on the water and the owners have a rotating display on the roof that lights up at night. They change the theme every season.

Thank you for stopping by. I hope you enjoyed your walking tour of our neighborhood and the Island. I love hearing from you and sincerely appreciate your visit, comments and those of you who follow my blog. Please let me know if you have any questions or would like to see me paint something special.

I will be taking a blog break to spend time with my loved ones and will return after the New Year. We will have tea and paint together, visit charming shops and gardens and I will share photos of my cottage home and garden.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish you and your family Peace and Joy during this very special season as we celebrate the birth of Jesus.

Holiday Blessings and Warms Wishes for a Joyous and Wonderful New Year, Erin

Saturday, December 12, 2009

A Cottage Christmas

Welcome. I am so glad that you stopped by. Come in and sit down and relax for a few minutes and I will make you a cup of hot coco to warm you up. We are having lots of much needed rain in Southern California as well as snow in our local mountains. It is cold outside and the perfect time to take a little break from the holiday rush.

I found these adorable Christmas cups with Scottie dogs at Ross Department store for $2.98

Finding inspiration . . . . .

Here . . .

The Scottie plate was $3.98.

There and Everywhere . . . . .

I could not resist painting a little Scottie dog painting for my friend, who owns two adorable Scotties, for Christmas.

A Santa cookie jar is filled with sugar cookies. Would you like one to go with your hot coco?

Vintage and new stockings are hung here and there

This one is very special and made by my dear friend and artist Jane Elliott. She used old lace and denim fabric.

Snowmen came in from out of the cold and are happy standing guard over the fireplace.

My studio assistant, Bentley, is anxious to take you into the garden to show you his new Christmas stocking. He is wearing his new raincoat and does not mind the rain.

Since we are in the garden in the rain we will show some gifts I have been growing to give to family and friends for Christmas.

The little red birdhouse planter holds a Rosemary topiary.

I purchased the garden signs at a local craft show - they make great gifts for gardeners.

The little JOY sign was made from salvaged tin.

The Ivy topiary looks festive with the addition of a red check bow and red berries.

The wreath is a mixture of real and artificial greens.

Paper whites are so fragrant and make a wonderful gift which can be used indoors as well as outdoors.

The addition of ivy to a potted Poinsettia adds a very nice touch.

Fragrant paper whites.

I start growing paper whites in early November so they will bloom by Christmas.

I plant a new batch of paper whites each week and that way I have them blooming through the end of January and into February. They make wonderful inexpensive and thoughtful gifts.

The rain has stopped and our beautiful California sun is shining.

Bentley was glad to take off his raincoat and put on his new Holiday collar. Looks like he is still looking for his Christmas stocking to show you.

Looks like he found it.


Thank you for stopping by to visit. I love hearing from you and sincerely appreciate your visit, comments and those who follow my blog. Please let me know if you would like to see me paint something special or have any questions.
Have a lovely week. Blessings, Erin