My Hobby as a Colorist

Most of you know I love to color. It is my way of relaxing. It is therapeutic in keeping me calm to lower my blood pressure, which in turn helps my heart. Last week, I decided to purchase a book which has intimidated me for some time. I’ve come a long way since I began my coloring journey. I chose to color this picture with oil pencils. After finishing the water and the bookshelves, I took a short break.

Tuesday I was looking through Amazon and saw a set of 120 pencils I’ve wanted to try for over a year. They were on sale at 25% off. So I ordered them and they arrived yesterday. They are oil based pencils and they are square in shape. I have another set that is wax based where the pencil barrels are hexagonal. They are my favorite pencils as far as comfort goes. Aging fingers do not grip round pencils without difficulty. So I wanted to see how the square pencils worked.

Wow! They feel fantastic and they are very pigment saturated. I loved swatching them. Today I am going to use them to color the books. I’m having a lot of fun coloring this picture. Kirby Rosannes is the illustrator. He has many fantastic books and all are different types of pictures filled with little objects. This book is called Worlds Within Worlds. I’m enjoying coloring something besides portraits.

Here is a picture of what I have completed so far and a picture of the pencils. I will share the final picture once it is complete.

First Breath of Winter

The first breath of winter is in the air this morning and a freeze warning is in effect for tonight and tomorrow morning. All is quiet outside my window as I sip my morning cup of tea. Templeton is sitting beside me on my desk as he awaits his morning brushing.

Feeling very blessed to be enjoying the still of the morning with a warm beverage and a purring companion. Yesterday I was thinking God might be calling me home. I suffer from A-Fib. I suffered a very strong attack with chest tightness, jaw pain, and shortness of breath. that came on suddenly. A little over 3 hours later, after prayer and rest, all went back to normal.

My job on earth is still not completed, so I welcome this day with a joyful heart. Once all the excitement of seeing my daughter later today and wishing her well on her journey in the morning, I will settle into a routine that includes more resting, reading, and coloring.

Lifting my cup of tea with a smile and thanking God for each person who reads my blog. May you find joy in the little gifts He gives you as well as the bigger ones!

The Joy of Changing Seasons

I am delighted Autumn has arrived! I slept so soundly under my comforter as the outdoor temperature plummeted to 40 degrees. I haven’t used my A/C or heat for two months now. There’ve been nights when I’ve struggled as the inside temps rose to 80 degrees. Thank goodness for overhead fans! Now it is a comfortable 70 degrees inside.

Last winter there were many times when my body temperature dropped and I shivered and couldn’t get warm even though the inside temperature was 70 degrees. I am going shopping for thermal underwear because I’m setting my heat to 68 degrees this year in response to the rising costs of natural gas.

Oh, if one spends time watching news, there is danger of growing fear over inflation, supply chains, and such, but what good is it to worry? Worrying only means one doesn’t trust in God. I do. He gave us common sense, but many don’t use it.

There are people saying Christmas isn’t happening this year! Why? Because of supply chains. Crazy, right? The world wants to make Christmas a commercial holiday. I’m not buying into what the world has to say. Christmas is a holiday Christians celebrate to mark the birth of Jesus Christ. Supply chains can’t deter that!

As for my cat, Templeton, he is doing great! His digestive system has calmed down after many months where he continued to decline and I feared he would die. He is now eating a digestive health canned food along with his dry food. Life is back to normal for him and me. I’m humbled by answered prayers.

I’m enjoying my small group Bible study and the camaraderie of these beautiful women. Every Wednesday I have lunch with a dear friend, and on Sunday after church she and I have lunch together. I spent a little time with my daughter on Friday and she presented me with a gift for my upcoming birthday–a fantastic outfit. My favorite part is a very warm, cuddly long cardigan! I’ll be wearing this a lot as the weather continues to change. It’s perfect for snuggling in when I’m reading!

Last week I did a lot of reading. When I get caught up in reading, I have difficulty tearing myself away from the story. As such, I didn’t work on my Christmas cards, nor did I do any research for my winter book project. I did work on a puzzle in short spurts of time, but it’s going to be another week before it is finished. I colored a few pictures, too.

As Autumn brings beautiful colorful changes into view, I’m happy to enjoy every moment with gratitude. And I realize how special each day is, bringing unique opportunities. I’m thankful to learn new things as God teaches me how to age gracefully. Lifting my cup of tea and leaving you with these words: The Word of God should be the source of truth for our lives. Until next time…

The Busy Life of a Winter Person

The past week, I had appointments every day except for Saturday. This isn’t usual for me. As I advance in these winter years of life, my best time of day is in the morning hours. By afternoon, I’m pretty tired. Most of my appointments were morning ones, so by the time I had finished, eaten lunch, and stopped to take a deep breath, I realized I was done for the day. This is the only downfall I see to aging. It’s the imbalance between the eternally youthful spirit and the aging body!

Each week I have a “to do” list (not including appointments and regular chores). Yes, I will forget if I don’t write them down! I try to finish all of them so I have a sense of accomplishment when I look at the list on Sunday morning. At the end of the week, only one item remained. Make two new cards. I’ll move it to this week. My goal is to have all my Christmas cards completed the week before Thanksgiving. That will leave a week for adding personal notes and addressing envelopes in preparation for mailing the first week of December.

I spent one afternoon trying to set up a home network so my laptop and desktop could communicate. I managed to get the laptop to connect to the desktop, but not the other way around. Diagnostic testing says all is set up properly, so perhaps it is just the less powerful desktop that is the problem. I’ve never been intimidated by learning new things on the computer. I’ve replaced hard drives and added memory back in the day! Today, I do have a computer tech guy. He will try and look at it soon. I don’t like working on the desktop and not being able to access a picture I’ve saved on the laptop.

I never add coloring or any hobbies to my to do list. More important than hobbies are my Bible study time and devotional time, journaling, and blogging. Honestly, it probably seems as if I don’t do a thing to the younger people who have such busy schedules. For me, though, all these things make for a busy day. During last week, I was blessed to spend time with some friends I hadn’t seen for a while. I also spent one on one time with my middle daughter. As I look back over the week, I see how richly I was blessed.

No, I didn’t spend much time with hobbies over the past week. I colored two pictures and finished working a puzzle. Since one of the finished pictures is the buddy color with two daughters, I can’t show it until next week. I plan to show a progression gallery of the picture from the uncolored page to the finished product. As for now here is what I can post. The first is a picture (colored with markers) from the Colouring Heaven Steampunk Special book by artist Hannah Lynn. Only four more pictures and I can call this a completed book! Yay! The puzzle was fun to work. There were so many little things in the picture, I was constantly revealing something I’d missed in the sample picture!

As I look at my calendar for this week, I see three days with no scheduled appointments. I’m hoping to get a few cards made, color a couple of pictures, and finish a puzzle I started Saturday. Lifting my cup of tea and thanking God for filling my calendar and giving me hope for each new day He provides. May you all find yourself blesses profusely this week! Until next time…

Using My Christian Planner to Focus More on God than Me

The past week was a quiet week. I did accomplish chores, the big one being shampooing the carpet in three rooms. Otherwise, I spent time thinking, learning, and talking with God. My Bible time hasn’t been as deep as I’d like. I needed to do something to focus me on studying, not just reading.

You Tube has a wealth of information. It’s where I go instead of watching programs on television that don’t inspire me. It’s a place where I learn more about coloring…and now about Bible and Prayer journaling. About digging deeper into scripture to glean insights. I would love to be as creative as some of the ladies, but I’m not that interested in spending a lot of time on “pretty” additions. And I don’t want to spend money on something that could turn into a hobby instead of focusing on God.

I need to remember it’s not about me. What I decided to try is using my Christian Planner in a new way. This type of planner has served me well for nearly three years. (I’m anxious to see the 2022 version which is on preorder.) By adding the tabs I can easily flip to the months. The next thing was to add some stickers to the front to “make it pretty and appealing.” Then I turned to the inside and used stickers and washi tape to embellish the pages. On the weekly devotional/sermon notes page, I decided to change the way I took notes in church. I used a small notebook to capture the thoughts and questions instead of copying notes on the screen. At home, I rewrote and expanded on these in my planner. The weekly layout is now a place to write the to do’s for the week, blog ideas, and a daily reflection. All my appointments are recorded on the monthly calendar page. I’m sure this will expand and change as I begin using it in this new way.

As for coloring and other hobbies, I spared little time. I did glue the puzzle both front and back and this week I hope to glue it to a backing to hang on the wall. Most of my pictures were colored just before I went to bed. I’ve been having issues with falling and staying asleep. My brain won’t shut off. Coloring the mandalas while sipping a cup of chamomile and lavender tea seems to help me unwind. Another thing I’ve started doing is writing in a “prayer journal” notebook while I’m sitting on the side of the bed before turning off the light. I write down the blessings from that day first thanking God. Then I add praise and prayer requests, just talking to God with my words. This seems better to me than just speaking the words and later forgetting the blessings!

And below are the pictures I did color. The first mandala was done with colored pencils. The other two were with markers. The autumn picture I found in one of my older Hanna Karlzon books called Seasons. I’ve been in the mood to surround myself with autumn, my favorite season of all.

I’m lifting my cup of tea now with happy thoughts as I ask God to bless each of you this week. May your heart be filled with peace as you share love and kindness to all you meet.