Saturday, May 29, 2010

Sunday Sketches

Happy Sunday Sketches all!

You can find more Sunday sketches at
Had to add this sketch I did today on black construction paper with colored pencils because it's the first time I've ever tried this combination.
I like how she turned out!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Happy Sunday Sketches all!

I tried something new this week - I have to admit I am so enamored of all the big-eyed girl art out there. For all of you who specialize in this type of picture, I just love them all.

So this is my attempt at a couple of Big-Eyed Girls - I am a little disappointed, because they just really doesn't do too much for me...maybe this is just not my genre. I'm kinda surprised because as I said I just love all of this type of art that I see on so many blogs...

Well I proved I can imitate all of you great wonderful artists out there to some extent. Hopefully if you think it looks a little like your work, you will be flattered and not annoyed:-)

You can find more fabulous Sunday Sketches at Sophia's place

Off to visit all of the other wonderful sketches!

Sunny Sunday Smiles to you all!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Bathtime for Mama

TONITE I'm going to soak in a hot bath and shave my legs!

I head into the bathroom, lock the door leading out into the hallway, and start my bath ritual. Having children that are still very young means I started planning this bath about 3 hours ago.

The little boys are out with their Papa reading Thomas the Tank Engine and rolling around on the expansive living room floor. They've both had their dinner, diapers changed, and been pajama'd up in preparation for a romp with Papa while Mama takes her bath.

Before I had these last two little ones, I had graduated once again to the elegant place in my life where I could take a bath every night without interruption if I wanted. My three older kids were old enough to understand my need to soak and relax and were really great about leaving me alone.

While I understood things were going to regress quite a bit (freedom-wise) with the arrival of two more little BOYS, I think I underestimated how the very simple pleasure of a nicely scented, good and hot, up to my chin bath had become such an essential part of my life and how much I'd miss it.

I mean, for me taking a relaxing bath is an integral part of life, right up there with coffee first thing in the morning, ANY type of cookies with my tea just before bed, and having a book going in nearly every room so I can snatch a few moments of reading wherever I find them. So I never thought I'd have to fight to squeeze enough time out of an evening to take my lovely bath early enough so that I did not fall asleep exhausted in it, and alone enough that I could really relax.

Silly deluded Mama.

These days, if I'm lucky, I get a chance to really soak maybe once a week (showers the rest of the time). And as I said, there is quite a bit of front-end work that goes into my being able to 'buy' a good 45 minute soak.

Tonite when I close the door and press the lock button with my thumb, the clicking sound of the lock makes me feel giddy! Almost instantly, my shoulders drop in relaxation, my face relaxes and a quiet sigh emanates from my very being. I lean over the huge soaker tub and turn on the scalding water, pull the stopper to activate the spray wand and give the tub a good rinse. After adjusting the water temp to just 'good-n-hot', I turn the knob that plugs the tub, pour in one of my assortment of bath salts, gels, or soaking bubbles and watch eagerly as the water instantly foams up. The yummy scent of papaya mango wafts up ~ delicious! I realize, not for the first time, that my sanity depends on these snatches of warm relaxation.

I can hear squeals of laughter from the living room, but I deftly tune it out. My new razor is ready on the side of the tub, new fruity scented shaving cream, (a splurge, as I usually just use whatever soap is handy), and an oversized, plush, freshly laundered towel sits on the tile shelf above the so delightfully deep tub. I'm in the middle of a new thriller crime novel, and of course it's right at the most thrilling part, so I quickly disrobe and ease myself into the water, careful not to get my reading hand wet. My sweetie has placed a freshly made cuppa mint tea and two little cookies on a plate above the bath, so I feel extra pampered tonight.

Ahhhhh! Surely Mama Heaven can't be better than this!

Sounds like I've got it all dialed in right?

Not so much.

This beautiful experience usually starts out so wonderfully that I am able to suspend my disbelief, each and every time, and actually buy into the ficticious notion that I will really GET to spend 45 minutes in uninterrupted bliss! Huh uh.

About 15-20 minutes in I'm fully engaged in my thriller. I speed read (out of necessity and years of fitting in time to read around so many kids) and the pages are whipping by. Slowly tho', a light scratching noise penetrates the corners of my consciousness, and I unwillingly let my eyes falter, and take a quick glance at the door.

As I watch, the knob is turned as far as the lock will allow first to the right, and then to the left. Liam, my three year old is quietly trying to get in. I hear giggles. He is not alone.
Having established that the door is locked, a soft knock follows accompanied by a not so soft "Mama!"
I sink down into the scented water, all the way to eye level, and pretend I don't hear anything. Maybe if I don't say anything they will go away.

Maybe not.

"Mama!" This time a little louder and immediately followed by "MaaaaMaaaa!"
I hear heavy footsteps rapidly approach the bathroom, and Craig says sternly, "Now you boys leave Mama alone!"

Complaining noises retreat to the area of the kitchen and quiet descends once again.

3-4 minutes later I am just picking the thread of the storyline back up when the whole process is repeated.
The knob is tried.
That it is STILL locked is discovered.
Another soft knock.
I still don't answer.

Quiet for just a moment and that's when I realize my mistake. Having locked the main bathroom door and closed my bedroom door, (which is attached to the master bath) I thought I had all the points of entry covered.

Uh uh.

A determined little man, Liam has moved on to his second plan of attack. I hear little feet scamper down the short hallway towards my bedroom door, that knob is turned and the door slammed open, more pattering to the bedroom entrance to the master bath, which I have locked, but to no avail. It can be opened from the bedroom side.

I lean my head way out over the edge of the tub and watch as first the lock and then the knob is turned. In pops curly haired Liam with an exhuberent "Hi Mama! Wasserdoin?"

"I'm taking a bath, LiLi and you need to go see Papa!" I say firmly.

He giggles and tilting his chin down waggles his eyebrows at me.

"Bath." He says, throwing his eyes wide open. "Water!"

I fight the urge to respond to this attack of cuteness and muster the strength to reply sternly,"Yes, Mama's bath! You need to go find Papa!"

More eybrow action, a huge lopsided grin, and one arm comes out of his shirt as he struggles to shed his pajamas.

"Liam..." I can't help smiling at him.

"Hi Mama!" Gigantic grin now. "Bath!"

My resolve starts to weaken cause he's just so darn cute. In short order he has charmed his way into the foot of the huge bathtub and is playing with one of his many bath toys.

My legs are crowded up around my chest to make room for him. My book is abandoned. We hold a long conversation about whether the hot chocolate he makes me out of bathwater and bubbles (for whipped cream) is just right. I squeeze his bath toys and squirt water all over him.

Soon his whoops of delighted laughter draw the eighteen month old's attention. We are quickly joined by Eamonn, who has made his way through the bedroom, found the bathroom entrance breached, and taken full advantage.

A young man of few words he simply says, "In!" firmly while tugging at his pyjamas. Half a minute later he has joined us and is quickly giggling and conferring with his brother over hot chocolate preparation. "Mmmmm...Good!" he pronounces with a smile, dipping his upper lip into the bubbles and coming up with a frothy mustache.

After an indeterminate period of time, Craig wanders in sheepishly. "Aw geez... Sorry sweets," he says, leaning down to kiss the top of my hair. He has gotten caught up answering business emails and lost track of the babies.

"Never mind," I say magnanimously, tipping my head back for a proper kiss. I scoop up a bath cup, fill it with water and top it with 'whipped cream'. "You're just in time for Hot Chocolate."

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

'Mother Earth' work in progress

New indian ink drawing - sort of thinking of Mother Earth / Renaissance Woman when I drew this one...
What do you think?
I will post with color after I get a copy to work with. I am preserving all my ink drawings now in the original black and white, and coloring copies.
(click on picture for more detail)

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Sunday Sketches

Happy Sunday Sketches All!
Busy week so this is a quick sketch I did of a couple of the flowers from the AMAZING bouquet I got from my lovely daughter for Mother's Day.
You can check out other amazing Sunday Sketches at:

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

My Office and Baby Love

I'm working.
A frown furrows my brow as I concentrate. I perch on the very edge of my seat, hunched over my keyboard, leaning towards my computer screen. For moments at a time I am lost in whatever small piece of work I am trying to complete around the multitude of 'MOMMY' chores that fill my day.

About my office:

It is made up of a space measuring about 6' X 6', tucked in a room that once served as a pantry in some former incarnation. On one side it has floor to ceiling shelves and drawers, and they've been here a LONG time. The west wall has a small window that opens and looks out over our Paul's Scarlett Hawthorne tree, and this is the view I savor every time I am working.

The other side of the expansive 6' gets really interesting. A previous owner decided to purchase a mammoth fridge with two doors that open out for the fridge portion, and a freezer drawer on the bottom. Great when you have a family as large as we do. Unfortunately, this behemoth did not fit in it's designated spot in the kitchen, which is the next room over from the pantry, so that enterprising former owner decided to cut a hole in the wall into the pantry and jimmy the back 6" of the fridge into what is now my office.

It's cramped or cosy, depending on the day, and how much sprawl I need to finish whatever project I am working on.

Today it's cramped because my nearly three year old is drawing on my already spacially challenged desk beside me, and my 1-1/2 year old is climbing the spare chair to move the magnetic clips holding the work orders for our business to the back of the fridge. (I can find a way to make anything work it seems.)

I murmer approvingly, if absent-mindedly, each time Liam asks me what I think of his drawing. Behind me magnets fall and Eamonn climbs doggedly down from his chair, retrieves them, climbs back up onto the chair, and replaces the magnets on the obliging back of the fridge. This game is good for keeping him busy for at least ten minutes.

So you can picture me entering A/P and reconciling our business bank acct with Liam about 6" to my left, sharing the desk, and Eamonn no more than a foot behind me playing with the magnets.

I use the top of the copier for holding the invoices I have already entered and billed, the tiny space above my keyboard for those waiting to be entered, and a series of creative wall pockets for those that I most likely won't get to today.

I pause for a moment and daydream about what it will be like in a few short years when they are both in school full time and I will have this space, (or a bigger one) all to myself. I think about the TIME, blocks of UNINTERRUPTED T I M E, to take care of whatever job I need to do without any interrruptions or distractions.

Moments later I am brought out of this reverie by the touch of two soft little toddler hands slowly rolling the back of my shirt up and a babysoft little cheek being pressed gently against the bare skin on my right hip above my pants. A sigh of contentment issues forth. Eamonn has tired of his magnet game, climbed down off of his chair, and climbed up behind me on mine. He is laying sideways on the chair behind me, utterly content with the little bit of hip he has managed to expose.

This is a baby love at it's finest!

Eamonn is my fifth baby and my last. His was the only birth I had where my baby and I were left alone, skin to skin, for the first full hour. It was quite literally Heaven!

As a result of that first full skin contact, (or at least that is what I believe) he continues to be quite attached to being next to my skin. Whether it's my neck, my arm, my legs if I am in shorts, he just loves to be in contact with my skin, wherever he finds it.
Eventually Eamonn turns his head slightly and blows a soft raspberry onto my hip. Giggles errupt. He repeats this two or three times. More giggles. Finally I turn around, scoop him up, and snuggle him into my neck.

I know someday soon I will be alone in my little office, enjoying the quiet and efficiency. But I will always hear the echos of baby love raspberries, remember the soft touch of toddler hands, and the distinctive smell of a new box of crayons. Of course I will enjoy the little bit of elbow room I will gain when they are both in school full time, but I know I will miss these days of the three of us, tucked into this diminished space, cosied up next to each other, loving each other up.

Work will be here always. These absolutely precious moments of baby love are fleeting and glorious. To be treasured.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Sunday Sketches and Mother's Day

In honor of Mother's Day this is a drawingI did of my Faboulous Five to put on a card for them for Mother's Day.
We are off to a fabulous Mother's Day Breakfast Tomorrow, and a Day of Pampering...Just what Mama Needs!
A very Happy Wonderful Relaxing Pampered Mother's Day to all of you Mamas.
Smiles all!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Sitting at my office window looking out at the grey grey sky and feeling INADEQUATE.
Normally I handle the highwire juggling act that is my life fairly well I think. Today...not so much.

I suppose when you do cram as many things as possible up tight together into a frantic collage of activities every day, something is bound to give.

Why, I wonder, does it all have to give at once?

In trying to juggle the bookkeeping for our business, looking for reliable childcare where I feel comfortable leaving my precious children, trying to maintain my 'sexy lexy' persona for my wonderful mate, and supporting the projects, homework, and hunger pains of five children, I am having a LOST day.

An 'I don't even know where to start' day.

I think I'll just have another cuppa coffee, maybe a slice of cinnamon toast, and sit on the floor and play with my boys...

Have you ever felt inadequate in your relationships, in your life, like you just can't cover all the bases?

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Sunday Sketches

Our power was out this morning so I missed posting this earlier.
This is a sketch I did of a gal on her wedding day.
The sketch was done in colored pencils, but the scan is black and white.
Can't wait to get over and see what everyone's sketches!
You can find more Sunday sketches at

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Laffy Taffy

My daughter just schooled me at round the world.


I think I'll just have a laffy taffy and pretend it's all a bad dream...