Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Originally uploaded by jjs_37
Another Illustration Friday prompt. I really had no idea what I was going to do for this prompt but there I was, sitting in the lobby of N's music school surrounded by guitars. Almost as soon as I started drawing a guitar, she came out and was ready to go. When I was home later I had a great idea. I could Zentangle the guitar and it would be perfect for IF!

Monday, November 16, 2009


Originally uploaded by jjs_37
Does it ever feel like your life is unbalanced because you are focused on the wrong thing? It does to me I guess. Not really the constant connection with people but also the crazy number of things I will put in my calendar simply because they fit.
Then again, can this be a tool for balancing ones life?
It's a double edged sword.

Monday, November 02, 2009


Originally uploaded by jjs_37
Illustration Friday prompt for October 16th. I asked my daughter what "frozen" reminded her of and without hesitation she said rainbow sherbet as I was thinking of the outdoors and possibly skiing.
This is done on an ATC (2.5"x3.5" watercolor board in watersoluble colored pencil and ink)

Hiking with Girls

A couple of weeks ago I went to Big Basin State Park with the girls. We had rented a cabin for the weekend and I wanted it to be a low key weekend. No pressure to get anything done or finish any particular hike. The park was very quiet first thing in the morning because the campgrounds had been closed the night before. There had been a storm earlier in the week and a lot of branches had fallen from the trees and needed to be cleared up. Nevertheless the weather was wonderful when we were there.

We woke to a sunny and slightly chilly morning and discovered that the campstove was not working. Or course the Redwood forest is so tall that it is not very bright on the forest floor. I needed the flash all day. After warming up in the headquarters and drinking coffee and cocoa, we set off for sempervirens falls with light feet and joyful intention. As it turns out, there are a lot of rootballs, fallen logs, fairy rings and rock formations that have to be climbed on and over and inpected closely.

I think it is easy to guess how far we got... Pretty soon we needed to stop for snacks, and then lunch. I estimate we were a mile and a half up the trail which is not bad for a 5 year old. And since I had no expectations and was willing to enjoy what came to us I was happy to turn back. The hike that had taken us so long really only took a half hour to reverse but then we rested up in the store with cocoa and snacks.

Without the campstove, I had to light a campfire so we could make grilled cheese sandwiches for dinner. I had two fire starters and I figured we could get them going easily with that but as I was coaxing the fire along I realized that it has been ages since I have set a fire myself. Still I managed and we had inside out pizzas and apple pie toasties on cinnamon bread for dinner.

Before setting off the following morning we explored the Redwood Trail near the headquarters. We heard the Acorn woodpeckers hard at work and we could see their handiwork in the dead treetops through binoculars. Since we live among the Redwoods and these are the trees we see when we go to forests we forget that they are really incredible. Other park visitors exclaimed over the enormity of these trees. Taking a walk alongside tourists from other parts of the country and the world can remind you what a wonderful place you live in and how amazing the nature right around you really is.