I worked on a new journal page yesterday in the cold basement. UGH! The furnace struggles to keep the lower levels warm in these constantly below zero temps. Here’s a current weather screen shot.

Today is actually warmer than it has been the past few.  It took a bit of devotion to creativity to ignore the chill and create.

devoted art journal page

The word popped out at me from a dictionary page in my stash. I’m using my word of the year every day!  I am renewing myself.

devoted art journal page

I did a bit of journaling on the page with a few words and phrases that will continue to inspire me on my quest for renewal.

This maybe be the very last entry in my polka dot journal…it will be adhered to the inside back cover. I’ll have to see if there is possible room for one more page after this one is placed.

Speaking of devotion and renewal…I am happy to say I’ve been not only sticking with the goals I’ve set for myself but am enjoying it. Having a positive attitude about it and making strides in the right direction.I’m keeping on task with the help of my little notebook and therefore accomplishing more.

As well as trying to make every day look like this one…

This was my best day so far of the year but we are only 5 full days in and I’ve lost 4 lbs! Super excited! Let’s keep this momentum going!! My next goal is to hit all “greens” on the goals two days in a week. I figure if I set small goals I’ll have a better chance at success therefore not setting myself up for failure as I have so many times in the past.

Have a great day!

This year for Christmas we changed things up a bit.  In the past several years we’ve had a Christmas brunch and it worked out very well since the kiddos weren’t too great at waiting to open presents. In those days I think they would have preferred everyone spend the night and get up at 6am.  Since they are older now, we decided moving back to a more traditional time for our family was best. That meant we’d need a dessert.

I decided to make a rum cake. I’d made this one before and it was so yummy. The recipe comes from a cookbook called Booze Cakes that I checked out from the library.  The first time I made it I used a standard bundt pan in the classic bundt shape. This time I decided to get a little adventurous and use my fancy bundt pan since it looks a bit like Christmas trees.

rum cake

As it was baking, I was realizing that the tree pan was smaller than the classic pan…I kept watching it in fear that it would run over as it baked. I was lucky…

rum cake

Look how beautifully it came out of the pan! I took a lot of time preparing the pan in hopes that it would work.  So cute!

rum cake

Remember I mentioned this was from a cookbook called Booze Cakes…yeah…that bottle was full when I started and I wasn’t sampling. I don’t even like rum in drinks…but I sure do in cake!!!

Just before serving I dusted the entire cake with powdered sugar giving it the appearance of snow. I totally forgot to snap a photo though. You’ll just have to take my word for it. It was yummy and boozy.

The kids head back to school after winter break so I’ll be all by myself for a change…well I’ll still have Marvin to keep me company.


What are you doing today?

For this first edition of Second on the 2nd for 2017 I thought we’d take a second look at a post that highlights all the things I love about altered books and/or art journals. The altered book in this post is my Nature themed altered book I created following the AB 101 weekly lessons presented by our lovely hostess Elizabeth. Yes, I had created altered books previous to this but it was fun to follow along and be “forced” to try new techniques through the lessons along the way.

Take a look:


I love the slightly wavy pages from layers of paint, glue and 3D embellishments.

I love how the edges get all gunked up with various colors as I work through the book. Some could think this was a failure on my part to properly protect the other pages. To me it adds to the beauty.

Who could resist decorative edges?!? Not this girl.

I’m drawn to the way an altered book looks as it stands. It tends to pop open a bit so you get a little peek at what’s inside. Delicious.
This book permanently lays on a side table highlighting the decorated edge. It makes me happy to see it there all wavy and wonky with shiny bits and babbles just daring you to pick it up.

I am super excited about my word of the year!


Renew…the word is so simple yet can mean so much. Renew can be to begin again or with increased vigor. Renew can mean to restore and rebuild. Revive, reinvigorate, reaffirm…see where I’m going here.

The New Year always gives us a blank slate…a place to jot down our hopes and dreams, makes goals and see them through. So often we create lofty and/or unattainable goals for ourselves in the name of “resolutions”. I swear the majority of people do this knowing full well that they’ll quit within the month. It’s become a big joke. It is for that exact reason I made the shift to a single word.

So how do I want to honor that word throughout the year…

I want to renew some friendships I have let slide. Renew my effort to create a healthy and sustainable lifestyle for myself and family. Renew my vigor for this wonderful life I’ve been given. Renew myself in mind, body and spirit and when I fail I will renew myself again…not give up. My word of the year is very self centered and self serving this year and I’m not going to apologize for that.

Just a few inspiration thoughts I gathered on Pinterest to go along with my renewal.

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2016 word enjoy | Halle's Hobbies

At the beginning of each year I chose my word of the year. For 2016 I picked Enjoy. Now that the year is at its end I always like to reflect upon how I did honoring my chosen word.

This is what I wrote:

Enjoy the process of creating and blogging. Enjoy and embrace the fact that I am a stay-at-home mom of teenagers and enjoy the time I have left with them. Enjoy more time with Mr. G since the kids aren’t needing or wanting our undivided attention. Enjoy being driven around by my son. Find a healthy lifestyle we can enjoy. Dig in the dirt for enjoyment of gardening and the nourishment it provides our family. Enjoy friends, good books, wine and walks. Enjoy the little things in life.

I feel as if I hit the mark with this one….my only regret is that I think I enjoyed food and drink a bit too much this year.  🙂

I can’t wait to share my word for 2017…

Here we are…New Years Eve eve…aka Mini-me’s b-day! She is 14 today! Holy smokes…I can hardly believe it!

I thought I’d share a little collage as a bit of a year in review.

Art, sewing, gardening, canning, painting, leather stamping and remembering…and oh yes, Marvin exploring the snow.

I’m sure someone will ask…the mural of Prince was spray painted on the side of the local movie theater by a New Zealand artist in about a weeks time. It’s very impressive in both detail and scale. Here’s a link to a news clip if you’re interested.

Happy New Year…a bit early! Be safe. Wishing you all the best in 2017!!

I’ve fallen a bit behind with T stands for Tuesday in both posting and visiting. I blame it on the holidays and birthdays this time of year. Time seems to slip through my fingers like sand through an hourglass.

I did finish up an art journal page on Christmas morning while we were trying to determine if we’d have to delay our family get together due to the sheet of ice covering everything. Instead of worrying, I created. grateful heart

The words reflect what I was feeling.

grateful heart

I even included a coffee cup as each morning I start my day with that as well.

Today will be spent on laundry, sewing, maybe a bit of shopping and quality time with my girl.

What are you doing today?


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