Hello Friends and Happy Tuesday!

Hope you are having a great day that turns into a great week!  It’s been beautiful weather here plus we had a long weekend for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, so we’ve had a four day break to enjoy it.  I have a lot of things to get to in this post so let’s just get started.  Feel free to skip to the end if it’s all too much. 🙂

today’s art . . .

is my June DT inspiration projects for More Than Words June challenges.  It’s an exciting month as they are celebrating 150th challenges, which I will talk about in a minute but first here’s the art…

The theme of this month’s Main Challenge is ENCHANTING and BOTANICALS so I added a lot of botanical washi stickers to my page and this enchanting creature lol.

Then for this month’s Mini Challenge, I made a tag.  The Mini Challenge is for cards, tags, postcards and ATCs and the word this month is DAYDREAM. Both challenges come with a bonus to add a “150” to your projects, which I managed to do on both of them.  The big 150 in the journal page came from some old Tim Holtz tissue paper and the 150 on the tag is a stamp.

So that would normally be the total of my MTW projects for the month but since we are celebrating a special challenge, I volunteered to design some prizes, and so I also have more “art” to share today.  I made some mini art journals as part of the prize package…

And I also made some souvenir ATCs…

And while I was testing out some inks and finishing up on Friday, I managed to spill a whole bottle of blue acrylic ink EVERYWHERE – on the desk, on a pad of watercolour paper, on my newly covered Harris Tweed chair, on the carpet, on my PJs, on my feet and of course, on my hands!  I don’t even know how I managed to knock it over but I then had to spend a good 40 mins cleaning it up after hopping to the bathroom so I could clean my feet and not get even more of it on the carpet!  This is not the colour that I spilled btw because there is none of that left, it’s all on the floor LOL.

I’ve also been making some dot cards but since they take forever to dry, I had to start them a couple of weeks ago, and they are still not dry, but then they are also quite generous dots. I used my Mijello Mission Gold watercolours, most of them are pure (single) pigment colours as you can see from the dots on the right, where I have written the pigments under each colour name. Mijello tends to name their colours a little differently to some other brands, for example what they call Cerulean Blue uses the pigment that is normally called Phthalo Blue.  I also painted out some swatches to show the colours.  These will also form part of the prize packages.  I might have some extras to giveaway on the blog too.  I’ll know more once they are all dry and less sticky.

BTW More Than Words has a current Design Team Callout happening.  You can find the application form here.

 

more free art classes  . . .

Get Messy Open Weekend:  After the end of Messy May, I got an email about a Get Messy Open Weekend happening next weekend (June 11-12).  A “free ticket” to Get Messy for the weekend sounds interesting as I can’t justify a monthly membership to anything this year, so free sounds very good.

Art Is Magic Creative Retreat Weekend Taster Sessions:  I received an email about this one too.  It also sounds good but there are 28 free lessons over the weekend so it will be difficult to watch them all lol.  You can sign up here.  Teachers include: Karine Bosse, Fonda Clark Haight, Louise Gale, Hali Karla, Holly McLaughlin, Whitney Freya, April Miller McMurtry, Catt Geller, Emma Petitt, Galia Alena, Jenny Grant, Kristy Kensinger, Cyndy Ross, Tina Walker, Robin Sturis, Eulalia Mejia, Kate Thompson, Mary Beth Shaw, Rakefet Hadar, Natalie Eslick, Toni Burt, Stephanie Lee, Effy Wild, Kiala Givehand, Melanie Rivers, Lucy Brydon, Leslie Wood, Ildiko Karsay

Kaleidoscope Taster Sessions:  Registration starts on 13th June, and Taster sessions start on 27th June.  If it’s the same as previously, the sessions can be watched in the Facebook group or the Willowing site.  Sign up to the newsletter to be kept informed.

I’m sure I had another free class to share but it’s gone totally out of my head right now.  If I remember, I’ll add it next week.

 

kitties  . . .

Think of these as the “before” photos, you’ll see why in a second.  From top to bottom, Miss Lily (who is doing a lot better now), Mr G and Miss P.

The kitties got a new scratching pad thingy this week, and they were all very impressed as was I.  As you can see it’s a fancy wedge shaped version with two pieces that can fit together or use separately and one of them has a built in ball toy.  The other thing it came with was a very suspicious looking substance in a bag which looked like catnip but who knows really since it had no labels on it.  But it must have been the most potent catnip ever as they all went bananas and here’s a look at the “after” photos…

 

 

 

icad  . . .

Oh yes, ICAD, no I hadn’t forgotten but I have no time in this already long post to cover ICAD as well.  Last year was all about pigments and colour swatching.  This year it might just be cat related and I am trying to follow the prompts but I have no time for an update as I haven’t finished Day 7 yet!  Normal service will be resumed shortly, long weekends always throw me off.

 

garden update  . . .

A very small cornflower has opened up it’s pretty face today

A very large salmon pink poppy did the same

And a very large red poppy likewise

The chives are flowering – can you spot the bumblebee on the tallest one?

Oops another cat photo snuck into the garden photos lol.  Miss P is enjoying some tasty catmint, which has also started flowering. She’s practically inhaling that leaf haha.

So last Friday I hurt my back by sitting in a chair for too long and then I couldn’t bend or straighten and had to go lie on the floor.  I covered myself in Tiger Balm and went to bed then stupidly, decided on Saturday that I would be able to use the grass strimmer if I just tried not to twist or bend or move too much.  After that I was totally incapacitated for the rest of the day and couldn’t even get upstairs. This is not a new problem btw, it happens on occasion when I am not careful and it can last for hours or weeks – one year it lasted for 9 weeks over winter and I had to eat Christmas dinner standing up as it was just too painful to sit down (after travelling to someone else’s house lying horizontal in the back seat).  I mention this because I read in last week’s post, that Kathy has some back problems too, and I found something that actually helped me this time.  A few weeks ago I got offered a back brace for free and while I had no back pain at the time, I knew it would happen again so I got it just in case, and I opted for a Large hoping it would give me more adjustable options, and then I forgot all about it till Sunday morning when I woke up for Day 2 of the immobility problem and remembered this new thing.  I dug it out of the box and decided to try it on.  I used to have something similar that was given to me by a chiropractor but it no longer fit comfortably.  This one is a bigger size and has metal supports, but what I didn’t realise until I put it on, was that it is also self heating!!!!  OMG!!!  I wore it all day on Sunday and I had no pain, just this amazing burning heat on my back, and when I took it off at night, my back was so much better and I could get upstairs a lot easier – I always dread that it’s going to go on for weeks but it’s practically gone now.  So here is a link to the one that I got but I don’t know how much it costs because it is showing as currently unavailable but this is a game changer for me. I thought I was going to be out of action for at least a week or more, not being able to sit down = no computer time, and instead, I am almost back to normal.

 

t stands for  . . .

Still using the new mug and loving it.  This was breakfast – homemade granola – nuked in the microwave for speed and a cup of Caramel Cream tea. The granola looks like this…

I could go on about the evils of microwaves but at this point it’s probably not going to make a difference whether the food is nuked or not after years of microwave usage.  I make it with coconut oil and maple syrup and then whatever nuts, seeds and dried fruit I have.  I don’t like the shop bought granola as it always has things in it that I don’t like/don’t eat like those horrible banana chips – ugh.  If you bake it in the oven it can take 45-60mins but if you “bake” it in the microwave it takes about 6 mins.  🙂  When I bake it in the microwave I only add the coconut oil, maple syrup, oats, nuts and seeds, otherwise things like shredded coconut and dried fruit can burn – but only in the microwave.  If you bake it in the oven, you can put everything in at once.

Happy T Day!   It’s just gone midnight here so I may as well post this as it is officially Tuesday!

As always, thanks for reading, and have a great week!

Ingredients
as mentioned above

Challenges

Altered Book Lover – T Stands for

 

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23 thoughts on “T Stands For Zonked Out Kitties, Giant Poppies, MTW 150, And Granola!

  1. pearshapedchris says:

    Great to know that you have found a way to get some relief for your back. Miss P certainly loves that catmint. Funny pics and tale about the cat nip! The poppies and cornflower look wonderful. I have still not made granola with my SIL’s recipe. I never buy granola with dried banana. Your tea sounds great, even though I don’t drink tea. Belated Happy T Day, Chrisx

  2. Nicole/DVArtist says:

    I would love a heated back brace. I am going in today for an injection in my spine. I am so hoping it helps. Your are it lovely, the flower beautiful, and your breakfast looks delish.

  3. C J says:

    The after cat photos were a good chuckle. Ink never seemed impressed with catnip. I haven’t tried it with the kitties. It’s amazing how much of a mess a small bottle of ink makes. Lovely art and prizes. Even your breakfast is artfully plated and color coordinated. Love the color of that mug. Happy T Day

  4. Iris Flavia says:

    Sorry. But… you made me laugh about the spilling colo incident. Sounds familiar…
    Big awww to the sweet faces!
    One of my customers has a very, very vocal lady by his side, it´s always fun to hear her trying to get his attention!

  5. Foxy stamping-Sharon says:

    I love your post. I read the whole thing. I love the kitty photos and am glad to hear the kitty is better. The poppies are beautiful. Your projects are all wonderful! Thanks for sharing. I am so sorry to hear of your back problems. Wow! A whole nine months. I have oatmeal in the microwave every morning with raisons. Happy T Day!

  6. Carola Bartz says:

    That catnip or whatever it was certainly zonked your kitties out… although “my” cats sometimes look like that as well. I’m sorry that you had problems with your back, it is so debilitating. But great that you found this brace that is obviously helping a lot. I seldom have back problems anymore, but when I had them I always looked for heat since it seemed to relax the nerves (or whatever). Your art is just beautiful – you are so creative. Sorry about the ink – how annoying! That’s someting that could happen to me as well, easily.
    Thank you so much for your lovely comment on my blog!

  7. deb says:

    Elle my goodness i LOVED your post but i hardly know where to begin… Your cats.. so funny.. My black cat Jinx never reacted to cat nip.. go figure.. Now one time i brought home some FRESH catnip from the nursery and he loved that.. All your art is fabulous.. I would be devastated if i spilled a bottle of ink.. OMG!! I might have been trying to mop it up with paper to save some of it.. lol Happy happy T day! So glad your back is better.. Kathy is not participating this week, she has company.. so you might pop over and let her know about the back brace.. Hugs! deb

    • Empire of the Cat says:

      Yes they are so funny aren’t they. One of the kittens doesn’t like the fresh stuff at all but Miss P goes crazy for it. As for the ink, it was accidentally mopped up by a pad of watercolour paper which is now all stained turquoise haha. Thanks for the heads up about Kathy, I will do that!

  8. Lisca says:

    I’m sorry to hear you have had back problems again. But it’s so good that the brace helps! Take it easy though. No more strimming!
    Oh that big spil sounds horrendous! And ink is notoriously difficult to get rid of!
    Your junk journal and ATCs are great! I love the ‘enchanted’ one.
    Your cats made me smile. Especially when high on catnip. And the scratch pads look great. I have never seen these before.
    Happy T-Day,
    Hugs,
    Lisca

  9. Jo - Let's Art Journal says:

    Hope your back is better soon and you’re not in too much pain! I fractured a vertebrae in !y back many years ago when I fell down the stairs so can relate to a back brace helping, I enjoyed the hydrotherapy too, the heated water was just the thing ?. It looks like you’ve been busy crafting and your makes look amazing. Of course your kitty cats stole the show, they look so content and happy – it was a joy seeing them and I had to smile at the cat mint, so cute! Happy T Day! Hugs Jo x

  10. Nancy Williams says:

    Elle, you and your cats have been busy! Wow. Great art, great pictures, great looking paint, great flowes and fun adventures! Love this post! Happy T-day. Hope you are in less pain as well! Hugz

  11. Bleubeard and Elizabeth says:

    Sorry to read about your back pain, but glad the brace worked. What a mess you must have had with the ink. I imagine it was difficult to get off your hands and feet. I feel for you.

    Those are nice MTW gifts you created. I also like your journal pages and your tag. They are beautiful.

    Your flowers are lovely. I had to laugh at the cats. Bleubeard would be just like your cats, but Squiggles HATES catnip.

    Caramel cream tea sounds wonderful and your breakfast looks good, too. Thanks for sharing your art, kitties, breakfast, and tea with us for T this Tuesday, dear Elle. I look forward to seeing your ICADs.

    • Empire of the Cat says:

      The cats are so funny aren’t they. Catnip is a dangerous thing, it can make them overly stimulated and therefore a bit aggressive. One of mine, Mr G, does not like the smell of the catmint from the garden, but Miss P and the neighbour cats eat it like salad lol

  12. Valerie-Jael says:

    What a lovely post. Sorry about the back problems, but glad you have found something which really helps. Your cat is just delightful. Your cat is just gorgeous, what a cutie. I am going to try the art is magic taster, but I will pick one or 2 lessons and leave the rest. Too much is too much! Happy T Day, hugs, Valerie

    • Empire of the Cat says:

      Thanks Valerie, really didn’t expect much from the back brace but it’s been wonderful. Miss Lily is such a cutie isn’t she 🙂 Yes sometimes it can be overwhelming when they offer so much at once but I guess they will then expect you to sign up to see everything you couldn’t get to.

  13. Linda K says:

    What a time you’ve had Elle! I’m glad you’re feeling better especially with the help of the back brace. And hopefully you got all that blue ink off everything- oh my. Your kitties are so sweet, and I love the one of Miss P in the garden- but the three of them after the catnip- :):):)!
    Gorgeous poppy- my favorite flower.
    And your art- that journal page truly is enchanting- love all the botanicals floating around the pages. Beautiful journal covers and ATCs. And I’m doing the ICAD challenge again- love doing small art like that.
    Feel better, and happy T day!

  14. Erika N says:

    I think even without back pain a heated back brace of some kind would feel fantastic. I hope your back is still feeling better. And oh no about the big spill. I once spilled a whole bottle of paint, and that was a mess. I can imagine how ink,which spreads more easily, just flowed. Sorry to read about your mess. But your flowers are gorgeous. Those giant poppies are great. And glad to hear Miss Lily is doing well. And I did enjoy the photos. Have a great T day and week ahead. Hugs-Erika

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