Colorful Life · Inspirational Thoughts

The Joy of Gifts Given and Received

I’ve been thinking a lot about gifts this morning. There are many kinds of gifts. The most important are the gifts we receive from God. Those gifts are gifts that should be shared for building the Kingdom. I have struggled for years with whether I’m using my gifts to honor and bring glory to God or whether I’m using them selfishly. I suppose I have cultured a belief through the years that I am inadequate and can never be enough. Looking back I can see the times when my soul was injured and I have continued to hold on to and believe the lies. But the Bible tells me I am who God says I am. He never tells me I’m not good enough. He does challenge me, gives me new grace every day, and lets me know I can do all things through Christ. Breaking the stronghold the lies have in my mind is done through affirming God’s truth through His Word.

But on to other gifts. My daughter gave me a mug for my birthday which shows a back view of me sitting with my three cats and our names are included. After losing Charlotte, this mug became even more dear to me. My daughter gave it with love knowing how I would love it. This morning, my fingers failed me and I dropped a glass into the sink which hit the handle of the mug and broke it off. The glass also broke. Since the pieces were large, it was easy to clean the debris from the sink, but it made me so sad that this favored mug was now imperfect. I had to remember that nothing had changed except my view. The joy from the gift still remained. It is not perfect but neither am I. I, too, have been damaged through the years, but God still sees me through eyes of love. I still see the mug through eyes of love. And the joy of knowing my daughter received joy in the gifting as I received joy in the receiving remains a beautiful memory indeliably etched on my heart.

I look around my home and see it filled with gifts given and received with love. And I know I am truly blessed. My life isn’t perfect, but I choose to look at the positive in daily happenings. My mug might be broken, but it didn’t shatter and my hands weren’t cut. The gift continues to give.

Though last week was busier than usual with appointments, I still managed to find joy in coloring. Here are the results of my efforts:

Another mandala from the Jade Summer Rose Windows book.

 

Book: Colouring Heaven Burlesque Special Issue 69.
Illustrator: Neil Kendall

 

Book: Fairies
Illustrated by Ruth Sanderson Colored with pastel pencils

 

Also from book: Fairies
Illustrated by Ruth Sanderson Also done with pastel pencils

 

Book: Enchanted Forest
Illustrated by: Johanna Basford

 

Colorful Life

But…Then God Sent Sunshine

What a week…is all I can say about the first full week of January. It’s been a week where I’ve been really happy to stay at home and away from the news and social media as much as possible. Though most of the week was heavily overcast, God did send sunshine! The last days of the week and most of the weekend, though cold, were filled with beautiful rays of warmth from the sun. Sunshine makes me smile and lifts my spirits.

It has been a week of prayer and tears for our country and for several of my loved ones. My granddaughter’s dog had to have surgery and has been severely ill. He was given a 50/50 chance to pull through. However, he seems to be doing good and should be coming home today. When I heard about the surgery, I cried and couldn’t stop until I turned and saw that God had sent fingers of sunlight to warm and paint my front porch. God gave me a heart for animals and for the connection their family has with them. I don’t understand why, but I accept it. I seem to feel for them very deeply, and I pray for them. When God directs our hearts in a certain direction, we should accept and do what we can. Prayer is powerful!

For me, I tried to fill this week with positivity and color. I love looking at an array of colored pencils or markers! Seeing them makes me smile. I open a book and find a picture that is speaking to me and begin to add color to the blank page. Watching the picture come to life, gives me pleasure. My work isn’t up to par with so many accomplished colorists, but for me it is all about bringing joy and having fun. And, shouldn’t we all have these things in our life? No matter what hobby you might have, I hope you find joy and fun in the creating.

I’ve been working on the “buddy color” picture with two of my daughters. I’ll save the “disaster” story about this picture for the end of the month when I can share the finished product. LOL! As for now, here are the pictures I completed this past week.

Jade Summer Rose Windows colored with Caliart Alcohol markers.

 

Illustration purchased on Etsy at Leanasanjoseart. Printed on tan paper and colored with Prismacolor Premier pencils.

 

Jade Summer Chibi Girls grayscale. Colored with Beileza alcohol markers.

 

Sheri Baldy My Besties Fluffy Girls. Colored with Castle Arts colored pencils.

 

And that is all from me for this week! I hope you all have a wonderful week ahead. Stay safe, and may God bless you and yours. Until next time…

 

Colorful Life · Inspirational Thoughts

What God Revealed to Me About Hope

As the new year ended, and the new year dawned, I was still praying for God to share my word for this year. The theme for me to live out in 2021 revealed by God was “hope.” I wondered about this word because I feel I always have hope. Hope that things will get better, that God will bring goodness out of a bad decision, out of illness, out of pain. So I thought about what God wanted me to see in hope…how I could use this to bring glory to Him…and how to encourage others to embrace hope.

And as I read chapter 9 of One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp this morning, I began to wonder if she had a website with more info on seeing gifts. The website led me to read her blog and I found this wonderful blog about hope from December 21, 2020. Click here to read it, please! I know you will not be disappointed. I’m so delighted to have found this blog and intend stay connected.

Why have I never thought of hope as an action before? I’ve thought of it as something I have, but not as something I do! God is so patient with me. I’m still a work in progress.

The verse to supplement my living out hope is: “I am counting on the Lord; yes, I am counting on Him. I have put my hope in His Word.” Psalm 130:5 NLT

As I move into setting up my planner with a vision board that I hope brings glory to God, I’m not only feeling hope, but anticipating living out this wonderful word. A word that will strengthen my faith and build my trust in God. And, so friends, I end my brief discourse on hope and turn to share the colors I’ve immersed myself in during this past week of deep gray skies.

This first picture I colored with Black Widow pencils and gel pens. My pencil sharpener decided to roll over and die and I barely finished the bright orange colored suit. So for the rest of the week, I resorted to other media until a new sharpener arrived. LOL!

Steampunk Special Issue 47 by Colouring Heaven
Illustrator: Hannah Lynn

This next one I colored with alcohol markers. I just love coloring in this book and seeing the beautiful results of a stained glass window.

Rose Windows by Creative Heaven

This picture is the one I completed the first week of December but couldn’t reveal until the end of the month. It was so much fun to see how my two daughters colored the same picture. One did a beautiful pink dragon, and one did a very scary looking green dragon. I used markers, pastels, and stickles glitter on this one.

Fairy Companions Book Picture: Dragon Skies Illustrated by: Selena Fenech

This picture I completed with the Gelly Roll Stardust glitter pens. It is the first picture in the same book as the Dragon Skies above.

This is from the Fairy Companions book illustrated by Selena Fenech.

And lastly, I worked on my diamond painting. This one is Fireside Christmas purchased from Diamond Art Club. It is a 22 inch by 22 inch (56cm by 56 cm) painting. For those who diamond paint, you’ll understand what I mean when I say it is nearly all confetti! I am not officially half-finished. Maybe I can actually hang it on the wall next Christmas.

Fireside Christmas
purchased from Diamond Art Club

And that is all my completed works for this past week. As 2021 unfolds, I wish you all the joy and peace that comes from living in hope! Until next week…keep believing.

Colorful Life

The Quiet Pause Between …

The week between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day is when I take a quiet pause to reflect on the months that have passed and to anticipate the upcoming year. I do not make resolutions. I rarely set goals. What I do is contemplate things I’d like to accomplish and envision how I will go about doing this. I also spend time talking with God as I listen to the word He places on my heart which will be my word for the year. Last year, the word was contentment. Never did I think how important that word would be for 2020!

I have a new Christian Planner where I keep my appointments, reminders about birthdays, and write my weekly sermon notes. I have a journal one of my daughter’s gave me Christmas 2019 which is half filled. I will continue to write in it and will probably have it completed by the end of 2021. I also have a beautiful journal, which I shared with you in a previous blog, another of my daughters gifted me on my birthday in October. That journal has become my give thanks to God journal. I also use it to record scripture that speaks to me, and things I read in books that speak to my heart. I hope to have this filled with at least 1000 gifts from God that I’m thanking Him for.

Life is unpredictable, and we have no idea what lies ahead tomorrow, let alone in 2021. But God wants us to live each day fully and happily, and to shine His Light where ever and whenever we have the opportunity. So I plan to continue posting uplifting and humorous morning posts on Facebook. I don’t have an active social life, so this is the means I use to reach out to others in hopes of brightening their day.

My coloring book stash is quite sufficient, and I plan to continue coloring and improving my skills without putting any specific goals in place. Coloring is my stress reliever and fills the time during the day instead of becoming a television addict! It is a pleasant way to pass the hours and challenge the brain.

Last week was really busy with Christmas preparations and celebrations so I didn’t color too many pictures. I really enjoyed those I completed. This first one I worked on throughout the month. It is colored with glitter gel pens. I can honestly say, I will never again do something like this with glitter pens! I like to use them for embellishments, but not for completing entire pictures. Tee hee!

Advent Calendar from Colouring Heaven “Cutesy Christmas” Issue 68 Illustrator: Rozrysowanamama

The next picture is one done with alcohol markers. I don’t try to blend with alcohol markers. This might be something I try to learn this year, but honestly, I just enjoy straight coloring with markers sometimes. The markers fit my hands well and the coloring time is a lot less than using pencils. I think she is adorable.

Also from Colouring Heaven Issue 68 “Cutesy Christmas” The illlustrator for this picture is Hanna Lynn.

I just love this picture. There are so many cute ones in the Colouring Heaven Issue 68. Lots more left to color for next Christmas!

Another from Colouring Heaven “Cutesy Christmas” issue 68. The Illustrator is Mariola Budek.

This last picture was printed on tan paper, a gift from one of my daughters for Christmas. The picture was illustrated by Christine Karron and is available in her Etsy shop. I love Christine’s work. I also love this paper! The picture printed nicely, and the pencils I used just glided like butter on the page. I added some light green pastel (kind of like mini chalks) for the background, so the tan doesn’t really show. It was so much fun, and I look forward to coloring more pictures on this fantastic paper.

Illustrator: Christine Karron available in her Etsy store.

And that is all I have to talk about today. As you can tell, colors are a big part of my life.  Hasn’t God created a beautiful and colorful world for us? Until next week, may your hearts be full, your tummies be full, your smiles be many, and your love spread where ever you may be.

Colorful Life

Expressing My Joy In Color and Pictures

My 3 month old great grandson, Leighton, and me

Let me start this blog with a picture that warms my heart. This little guy was born in September and I finally met him in person. He is such a sweet and happy baby! What surprised me was how much he weighed. He is such a tiny little guy, but when I picked him up I couldn’t believe how heavy he felt. Even more special, he gave big smiles when this old lady babbled at him. He even shared his own babbles with me. What a wonderful way to begin my Christmas week this Saturday evening. My six-year-old great granddaughter Rhyan was there as well. She ran up to me and hugged me and said, “G.G. you smell just like your house!” I immediately thought my house might have an unpleasant odor. Yikes. I said, “I don’t know if that is good or bad.” She replied, “It’s good! Smell!!” And I laughed. I’ll never forget that moment. Here are the beautiful gifts she made for me.

Picture frame hand painted colorfully by Rhyan
Ornament for my tree that says, Rhyan 2020 loves you GG

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is how I will remember this year, exactly as Rhyan has written it!!

 

And this is a bonus gift from her (which she told me her grandma placed in the bag…tee hee). It is holding up two other pictures she colored for me. I guess she got her love of colors and coloring from me!

Here it is..a magnet holding up two pictures Rhyan has colored just for me.

 

Earlier in the week, I received a surprise bouquet from my son and daughter-in-love who live in SC. Isn’t it beautiful!!

Beautiful surprise!

Lots of color and beauty blessed my life this week. I’m so filled with joy as I enter this week of Christmas celebration of the birth of our Savior, Jesus. He came to bring joy and hope to all people. Through Him, I know I have an even better permanent home waiting in Heaven.

And now it is time to share the pictures I’ve colored this week. This first one is a double page spread. I followed a tutorial on You Tube by Colorfully Optimistic

Double Page Spread from Seasons by illustrator Hanna Karlzon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This guy was from Colouring Heaven Dragons Special Issue #63 artist Douglas Carrol

 

Book Rose Windows by Creative Haven

And that is all the color I have to share this week! My wish for all of you is a safe and joyful Christmas and may your heart be warmed by what truly matters in your life. Until next week….

Colorful Life · Inspirational Thoughts

A Visitor with a Message of Hope

 

I believe this is a heron. Could be an egret.

There he sat, perched at the peak of my neighbor’s roof. My mouth opened in awe. A sight never seen before. I watched as he sat motionless on one leg. Like a statue. The grungy sky appeared to be pressing on him, yet as a breeze ruffled his feathers, he kept his balance. I couldn’t stop looking at him, nor did I want to, as a message became clear. A reminder to keep my balance no matter how dirty or grungy the world around me might be. A reminder that beyond the darkness lies hope eternal. Then, mission accomplished, he flew away. And I whispered, “Thank You, Lord.”

The past week held more worry and tears. I still miss my sweet Charlotte, and the thought that at any time, her siblings might also cross rainbow bridge, remains close in my thoughts. After all, they are now the equivalent of 88 human years. Older now than me. On Wednesday, my Templeton, didn’t quite complete a jump to the sofa beside me and it caused his hip to go out on him. I snatched him up, holding him close and telling him over and over that it was all right. That I had him. At 2:30 the next afternoon, I handed his carrier over to the vet tech. I sat in the car waiting to hear, dreading to hear, the results of x-rays. I prayed a lot. I cried a lot. God is good. Templeton is doing well on cosequin for felines and seems to be his old self again.

Still, my world’s colors have faded somewhat. No sunshine to lift my spirits. I cling tightly to knowing God loves me and this is only my temporary home. All I want for Christmas is for my family to be healthy and happy. Tangible things mean little. I would love to see healing and a cure across the world from COVID. I would love to see peace around the world. These are things I know God can fix, but in His big plan, only He knows why and what the outcome will be. We must endure the storm, and never lose sight of praising Him for the free gift of eternal life.

And so, as I end this weekly post, I leave you with my prayers, my love, and my wish for each of you to never, ever let go of hope.

Here are the few pictures I colored this week.

From Chibi Girls by Jade Summer
From Rose Windows by Creative Haven

 

From grayscale Fairies, grayscale coloring book by Ruth Sanderson
Colorful Life

Time for Happy Colors, Hope, and Joy

Time to share some happy colors, hope and joy!

Missed making my Monday post because I wanted to finish making my Christmas cards. Last year’s cards were fun to make, but this year I decided to tackle embossing. Being new at this, it was trial and error all the way. And the kitchen table, chairs and floor were so sparkly! It took a while to clean up when I finished. The cards took me two days to finish. I will NOT be making cards this way again. Instead I’ll stick to the 2019 method. LOL!

I did manage to color a few pictures since my last post. Mostly I’ve been working on coloring one advent picture a day. I’m using my glitter gel pens on these. They have been quick and easy to do. I did finish my color-a-long picture I do with two of my daughters, but can’t share until December 31st.

I’ve also been doing a little work on my diamond painting “Fireside Christmas.” I had wanted to finish and hang it for this Christmas, but that isn’t going to happen. It will be displayed for Christmas 2021, God willing. I love diamond painting, but haven’t been active with that craft lately. I have two completed pictures that need framing, but they are such odd sizes I haven’t found affordable frames yet. My youngest daughter got me started on diamond painting last Christmas, when she gifted me a kit. I’ve completed six paintings this year. They are all beautiful. I’m sharing a picture of the completed gift kit. Also sharing a pic of the one I’m working on now.

So as Christmas draws nearer, I cling to the hope that Jesus offers this weary world. I’m weary, as I know you are, of the state of the world due to the pandemic. Yet, there is always hope. I cling tightly to this hope and offer prayers almost continuously for all of God’s people. Christmas is still coming, and so is Jesus. We can hold tight to this truth and gain strength to face each new day. May your week be filled with God’s blessings, my friends.

 

This is so much more beautiful to see in person. I love how the sun makes it sparkle!

 

I love how this one is turning out. It’s called Fireside Christmas. Purchased from Diamond Art Club.
This picture is in book “Johanna’s Christmas” illustrated by Johanna Basford. I colored it with glitter gel pens.
I love this picture in “Christmas Time” book illustrated by Alena Lazareva.
Colorful Life

The First Snow of the Season

My world is slowly being colored white during the first snowfall of the season. It is the day I’ve been waiting for, this first whiteness to cover the dark colors of the dying season. Snow makes my heart smile. Perhaps it is the pristine color of unblemished white remind me of the purity of Jesus, my Savior. Though white isn’t really a color, it is something I can see with my eyes. I can almost taste it. It calms me. It recalls the beauty of hope.

Snow. Beautiful.

My world was darkened by the recent passing of my 17-1/2 year companion, Charlotte. My heart was heavy with the loss of her sweet presence in my life. Her two brothers have also been struggling with missing her. Our circle is smaller.

The day we brought her home from the vet.
Charlotte loving her brother, Templeton.
One of her favorite spots to nap in the daytime next to my pillow.

This week has been one in which I didn’t do much coloring. Toward the end of the week, I managed to color. Also, I can share the pictures I colored for the color along with two of my daughters as it is the last day of the month. One version I colored with pencils, the other with markers. I’m also sharing a pic I colored the week before, but forgot to post last week from the Chibi Girls book.

From Jade Summer Chibi Girls Grayscale coloring book
Book: Colouring Heaven Cutesy Christmas Artist: Ruth Sanderson
Book: Fairy Companions
Artist: Selena Fenech
Title: Carry Me Home
Book: Fairy Companions
Artist: Selena Fenech
Title: Carry Me Home
Book: Colouring Heaven Woodland Fairies
Artist: Christine Karron
Title: Snow Fairy

My house is now decorated for Christmas and I’m settling in for a comfortable winter as the snow continues to accumulate. May your world be filled with beautiful colors…until next week…God bless you and yours.

Colorful Life

The Color of Sadness

Sometimes a colorful life can be dulled by a grieving heart. My life is the color of sadness right now. Today I’m facing the reality that my sweet little kitty, Charlotte, is nearing the end of her earthly life. She has been my friend for nearly 18 years, trusting me to care for her. As this time has been drawing near, I’ve done a lot of thinking and praying about how to approach her care during this time. With Covid-19, I cannot go into the veteranary’s office. They pick up your pet at your car and call to update you. The trauma of forcing Charlotte into a carrier and then the drive would be awful for her. She has never liked trips to the vet’s office. During the last 4 years, she has not gone for yearly visits. The vet said since she doesn’t go outdoors ever she no longer needs the booster shots. She has enough immunity built into her body. I just want to make Charlotte’s last days/hours comfortable and safe for her. Right now she has hidden behind a large chest of drawers in the bedroom, a place I cannot reach her, and a place she has never gone to before. She isn’t moving anything but her head and ears when I talk to her. For the past couple of weeks she has been avoiding food off and on, vomiting, and sleeping the rest of the time. Her back legs seem to be very tender making her gait unsteady. She isn’t using the litter box probably because she isn’t taking anything in. So, yes, my colorful life is a little dulled right now.

Sharing the colors I put to paper over the past week and wishing you all a blessed Thanksgiving.

Finished picture from The Baker’s Dozen
Book: A Christmas Carol
Illustrators: Kate Ware and Vladimir Alecsic
Book: Cutesy Christmas Issue 68 by Colouring Heaven
Picture Artist: Ruth Sanderson
Book: Rose Windows by Jade Summer
Colorful Life

Does Laughter Have a Color?

I thought about laughter this morning when I stepped on the peddle to open the garbage can and tossed in an eggshell. Earlier I’d put in an empty paper towel holder, standing it on end. The eggshell landed right on top! It was spontaneous, a little gift from God, a burst of laughter.

Wikipedia defines laughter like this.

As I thought about the gift of laughter, I could think of several ways laughter resides in my life.

  • Spontaneous – Something unexpected that calls forth a quick burst, as it did this morning. I experience this throughout my day, even though no one hears but me and my cats.
  • Deep, Belly Laughs – These occur usually when I’m with family and friends. Reliving memories, experiencing humor through like minds, the antics of children and pets. Whenever this kind of laughter is experienced, it creates a memory that is funny whenever it is recalled.
  • Giggles – My husband was the king of giggles. If something struck him funny, he would begin to giggle and soon everyone around him would join in, the continuity continuing until everyone was crying with mirth. Oh, so many memories of these moments that make me smile today and ease the empty loss of his presence.
  • Happiness – These times of joy bursting from deep inside and erupting into tears. Happy tears leaking from an joyful heart.

I’m sure there are many more, but these are the ones that come to mind in this moment of writing. What color is laughter? It’s the color of joy, and for each person I believe this color is different. To me, laughter is many colored, like an explosion of colorful confetti with lots of sparkle! All the beautiful colors of God’s creation.

Living without seeing colors must be a lonely place to live. I am thankful for the colors God created in this world.

My coloring this week includes two pictures I can’t share until the last day of the month. Two of my daughters join me in coloring the same picture which we share then. I have two because I did one in markers and one in pencils. I also colored some quick pictures in a book called Rose Windows by Creative Haven. When colored they resemble stained glass windows. I’m sharing a work in progress in a book I’ve had since July of 2018.  It’s “The Baker’s Dozen” coloring book. The artist is Wendy Edelson and the story is by Aaron Shepard. My hope is to have the book completed by the end of 2021, if God is willing. Until next time, may God bless you with laughter and many colors!

Book: Rose Windows
Publisher: Creative Haven
Book: Rose Windows
Publisher: Creative Haven
Book: The Baker’s Dozen
Artist: Wendy Edelson
Story: Aaron Shepard