artist. creative. maker.

My beautiful family

Rescued is my favorite breed

Proud mother of cluckers

A family who plays together

Choosing to bloom where I am planted

Apr 2, 2021

I adore this little country sign!

 My Chalk Couture kit arrived yesterday and, of course, I couldn't wait to play with it.  First, I practiced on the little round discs (called Chalkable Chips™) that came with the kit.  Then I was confident enough to chalk the small "country kitchen" sign, and finally the larger sign.

Chalkable Chips™
Two sign boards were included in the kit.  The chalkable space on the small sign is 5.5"x7.5".  The larger sign board is gorgeous!  Oh my goodness!  I love it.  I expected the overall size of the larger board to be 9"x12" as that is the size the company lists the item to be, but that listed size is the actual size of the chalkable space, not including the frame.  The overall dimensions of the Couture Gallery™ Aiden White Frame that comes in the kit is 12-5/8"x15-5/8".  I was going to set the large sign on my desk, but it will look beautiful hanging on a wall.

 The weatherman pulled an April Fools prank on us.  We didn't have rain.  Yesterday was beautiful and sunny.  Today was also beautiful and sunny.  My husband seeded the yard because the weather forecast called for rain for the next few days.  Now we need to hand water the yard to keep the seeds damp.

I'm enjoying the first flowers of the season.  These bulbs come up every year in this pot.  The pot they are in is beginning to look full.  I will need to divide them this year.

 I am so grateful for the COVID-19 vaccine.  I was born with a congenital heart condition and I live with heart failure.  I spent nearly a year shut in at my home and keeping distance from my husband who works outside the home.  It has been long and difficult.  Coupled with having lost my mom, there were days that it became too much.  Now, thanks to the Moderna vaccine, I am able to do what many people never stopped doing.  I am able to shop!

Lowe's had flats of flowers on sale.  I paid $2 per 8-pack.  Yesterday I got 4 planters planted.  I have more to do.  I love flowers.  Seeing these beauties cheer me up.

Apr 1, 2021

The weather report says it will rain today.  April is fooling with us.  Yesterday was sunny, warm and beautiful, and the perfect day to host a social distanced tea with a friend.  We ordered a "Tea Party to Go" from a local tea room and enjoyed our tea sets in my front yard.

My tea set included a cup of potato soup, a side of orzo pea salad, four tea sandwiches, two savories, a scone with cream, jam and lemon curd, five sweets and choice of tea.  It was delicious!  It was too much food for one person so my husband enjoyed my leftovers.

image of tea for two
Social distanced tea for two on March 31, 2021

I am waiting for the delivery of a kit from Chalk Couture. I want to make some items for my Poshmark closet and boutique. I love to screen print. I took screen printing classes in college and worked at a screen print shop for a while, too. I own, but plan to sell, some professional screen printing equipment. The most tedious part of screen printing is making the screens and stripping the screens of their designs. I decided that purchasing pre-made screens, at a discount, was a better option.  That way I can just focus on being creative.  Chalk Couture gives customers commercial rights to sell items made with their designs.  I'm looking forward to this.  I'm excited to add a new tool to my mixed media art box.

Chalk Couture's transfers are reusable

Hopefully I'm not fooling myself. I'm participating in Effy Wild's blogging challenge.

I haven't done much in the way of social media posting since I closed my local mixed media art class business. Over the past year I deleted most of the content off of all of my social media accounts. Closing the business was not what I wanted to do and I took it very hard. For my own mental health's sake, I needed to have a clean slate. Today is day one of the blogging challenge. It seems as if I am emerging from a cocoon that I have stayed hidden away in for too long.

Dec 1, 2017

While sitting in the food court of our local mall, less than a month before Christmas, I found myself feeling a sense of loss and wonderment. The time was late afternoon, and the mall was nearly empty. What has happened to the great storefronts of the past? Deep down, I already knew the answer. Business is changing. It is changing rapidly. The question is, how are we (small business owners) going to change with it?

I recognize I have played my own part in this change. As a consumer, I have drastically changed my shopping habits. I went to our local mall three times this past week - yet, it was only on one occasion that I spent any money there. I treated my son to an afternoon snack from the food court. That was it. My purpose for coming to the mall all three of those days was to pick up packages from the mall's Amazon locker.

During the 80s and 90s, local malls seemed to be THE place to be.  As a teen, it was our hangout.  As a 20-something, it was our hangout.  Times have changed.  Our younger generations no longer hang out at the mall.  Youth sports, activities and video games have taken over their lives.

In less than 10 months, as a start-up business owner, it has become necessary to modify my business plan.  There is a need to make my service available to customers at a reasonable cost without my overhead expenses eating up significantly more than I bring in.  I am closing the year 2017, my first 10 months in business, in debt.  I will pay my final lease payment this afternoon and release my business from some overhead expenses.  By January, 2018, I will no longer operate a brick and mortar art studio.

Socrates has been credited to have said "The secret of change is to focus all your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new."  With a sense of sadness, I reminisce how the world used to work.  But I know that I must move forward and embrace change.

As the year closes in on 2018, I have much to be grateful for and much more to look forward to.  It is time to build on past dreams.  It is time to create something new.

Hello.  My name is Renee Clark.  Welcome to my blog.

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