How to Stop a Barking Dog

So I have this little dog, Odie (I actually have two dogs but tonight it’s all about Odie).  He’s a rescue and he’s afraid of people.  I’ve had him almost a year and he’s come a long way but he’s still nervous.  Recently, a friend and her college age daughter moved into my house.  The daughter lives at college so she’s not here much.  When she is here, though, Odie goes crazy barking at her every time he sees her.  I’ve never seen him bark at anyone else like he barks at her.

This is Odie when he’s not barking

It’s my job to figure out how to get the dog to stop barking.  I go to a holistic vet and she recommended an aromatherapy blend that would help the dog and the people in the house.  It’s been a few days and I love the smell but it hasn’t helped the barking yet. Also, I told her to give the dog treats when he stops barking.  I don’t think she tried this suggestion.   Today I started doing some research on the internet looking for other options.  I found some good ideas but I’ll have to tweak them to fit this situation.  Remember, she’s a teenager and really doesn’t want to hang around the house trying to get the dog to like her.   She was only here for the weekend but she’ll be back for the summer and I want to have some ideas to try when she’s here more consistently.

My point in telling this story is that this is a great example of why I think it’s important for everyone to exercise their imagination regularly.  I need a creative solution for this situation and the more active my imagination is the easier it will be for me to come up with a resolution that will work for us.  Researching on the internet is a great way to get ideas/inspiration and then I have to make the idea into something that’s mine, just like I would do if it was an idea for a mosaic.  If my brain is used to thinking creatively it will be easier to be creative in all situations, even finding a way to stop a barking dog.

I’ll keep you posted on how it goes.

Oh, I forgot to mention, to make it even worse, when ever Odie was home alone this weekend he went into her room and stole things that he found on the floor.


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This afternoon I got a bit bored with work and I started thinking about art journaling.  Not sure why I was thinking about it but I decided I needed to see some examples so I went to Pinterest.  It was so much fun to just take a few minutes and get inspiration from other people’s work.   I get so many ideas and I love that I can save the pictures that inspire me so I can go back when I’m ready and get inspired all over again. Last week I saw a wall hanging that was the phases of the moon and thought of using that idea for a mosaic.  I immediately went to Pinterest and looked up art with moons.  I couldn’t believe how many examples there were!  After looking at all the moons for a while I pretty much had my mosaic designed. Of course, now I have to find the time to actually make it but that’s another story.

I love thinking about and designing art projects.  I love seeing the design in my mind and thinking about the materials I’ll use and how big it’s gonna be and of course, it’s always perfect at this stage.  I get that good feeling in my stomach that tells me it will be a great project.  I can feel it even as I’m writing this.  It’s making me want to run and start working on a project now.

What inspires your creativity?

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Mosaics Night!

I love Tuesday nights because I get to go to mosaics class at Bella Mosaic Art. It’s the most fun place with the best people!

Tonight I got tiles back that I glazed last week and were fired over the weekend. I always get a little nervous to see how the glazing turned out. Tonight I was very pleased with the results.


I worked on the border tonight.  I cut little square tiles from a slab of clay and used a stamp to press a leaf design in each one.


They’ll get fired and will be ready to glaze next week.  Each step of the project is fun and it’s exciting to see my idea slowly grow into an actual mosaic design.

I must say, I love when I get to make things.  I forget everything that’s going on in my life and just focus on my project.  It’s great to just let go and get lost in art for a while  It recharges me.

What creative things did you do today?






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I Took a Walk

Last evening I took a walk in the woods with the intention to be very present and observe nature.  I get inspired by the patterns and colors I see in nature.  I had my phone with me so I could take pictures.  The first thing that caught my eye was this little path

I love the curve of brown surrounded by the green and the dots of yellow flowers.

I then looked up and noticed the tall trees and the space between the tree branches caught my attention. Some are so simple and then the patterns get really complex.  I’ll remember this in my artwork – think about the space between.

As I continued my walk I saw beautiful stone steps leading down.  I’ve been walking here for many years and I didn’t remember seeing these steps before.  I’m sure they’ve always been there but today my attention was focused I was seeing more than usual.

There’s another set of steps a little farther on (I knew about these).  I like the rope railing and the way the steps curve around.

I’ve never walked down the steps.  I like to imagine that they go to a fairy garden.  I thought about the fairies down there playing in the grass and flowers.

As I was heading back to my car the sun was setting and it was beautiful through the trees

The golden light looked like a million candles burning.

So I would say this was a pretty creative walk.  I took pictures so I can remember the shapes and colors and patterns that I can use to provide inspiration for art projects, I used my imagination to make up stories in my head about the fairies and I savored and appreciated the beauty of nature.

What did you do today that was creative?



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Today I knitted

This is the first official day of  daily creativity.   I wish it had been a day filled with creativity but it really wasn’t.  I did Sunday things that I needed to do. Finally, late in the afternoon I had a half hour to sit outside and work on a knitting project. I have to say that half hour was the best!  The sun was bright and warm and it felt great. During my short time knitting I was able to be totally present and only think about that moment. I suddenly heard all the sounds around me (dogs, birds, cars, airplane, wind chimes), smelled the smells (the sweet smell of hyacinth) and saw my backyard (forsythia in bloom, grass getting very green, blue sky).  It recharged me. The knitting was a little frustrating because I was working in the round and realized that it was twisted so I ended up having to take out a few rows to fix it. I didn’t really care, though. The knitting was really just an excuse to relax. Knitting is good for that.

I’m making a felted bag.  I was addicted to making these bags for a while. I had to sell them to support my habit. I finally got tired of them and I have a bunch of left over wool that I want to use up so I’m back to knitting bags again. I made a rule that I can’t buy any more yarn so the color combinations aren’t always exactly what I’d like. its an interesting exercise though. I always say we see all color combinations in nature so all colors go together.  I guess I’ll see if I’m right.   The pictures below are not exactly what I’m working on now. They’re examples of a couple of felted bags I made a few years ago. I’ll include a picture of the current project once it looks like something.

What creative things did you do today ? Take a few minutes to make a list. Post it in the comments if you want.

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I Am Creative Every Day

The year of On the Seventh Day I Grouted was my most creative year. Besides making a mosaic every day I did many other projects as well. I know that it was because I was so committed to doing something creative every day that I was able to be more creative in general. I want to get that feeling back again and I want to recognize that creativity is a part of my entire life instead of considering that only doing art work is creative. So here’s what I’m going to do – every evening I’m going to take a few minutes and write about what I did that day that was creative. It may be something like solving a work problem by thinking outside the box or making something different for dinner or, of course, working on a mosaic (my favorite thing to do). I think that we all do more things in our daily lives that are creative and we don’t even realize it. I’m hoping that by thinking about it and sharing it I will see how creative I am all the time and therefore expand my creativity. I also hope it will help you to think about all the creative things you do during the day and therefore expand your creativity.  Please enter a comment with the creative things you do each day so we can all encourage each other.

So, that’s my plan. I’m a little nervous about making a commitment to write every evening but I’m going to make the commitment anyway. I’m also going to make a commitment to myself not to feel guilty if I miss some days. I’m just going to do my best and we’ll see how it works out.

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Try a Little Doodling

I believe that we’re all creative and it’s important that we recognize our creativity and that we exercise it every day.  For me, creativity is as important as breathing.  I could not survive without it.  It adds color and fun and richness to my life.  I don’t mean that I have to make a mosaic every day.  I’m talking about allowing my imagination to permeate my life which allows my thinking and actions to be creative.  One small example is doodling.  Do you doodle during meetings or phone calls or watching TV?  I do.  I have found  that doodling helps me to concentrate.  I usually have a pen that I love with me and I like to use different ink colors so my doodles and writing look pretty.    It just makes me feel good.

Just a little doodle

Just a little doodle

I find it so interesting that people ask to see my doodles but very few start doodling themselves.   It’s so easy, you just have to start making marks on the paper – lines or circles or dots….  No one ever has to see what you did except you.  You can even doodle in private.  My mother always doodled while she talked on the phone in the old days before cell phones.There would be little pieces of paper by the phone with her latest creations.


This is in my to do list

How about while you’re watching television?  Just get a piece of paper and a pencil or pen and  start moving it around.  I know you’ll love it and you’ll be addicted to doodling before you know it!

Mosaic project day 68b

This doodle turned into a mosaic during my mosaic a day project

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