Author Archives: Karen's Stone Soup

About Karen's Stone Soup

Welcome to Stone Soup with Karen Samenow. Join me on this crooked path to fame and fortune!

Awakening The Creative

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Last Thursday night I was inspired to attend a lecture, and hands on painting class at the Oceanside Museum of Art.  The lecture was about Pablo Picasso, Henri Monet, and their similarities.  It could  have gone on for another hour, and everyone would have  been glued to the screen. All of the artists came away inspired and ready to create a one of a kind master piece…including myself!

My own brushes were at my side (I”m no dummy), ready for the gates to open, and the bell to ring!  After selecting a pallet of colors, a piece of watercolor paper (because, well…I know what to do with W/C paper), and some black and white copies of paintings each artist had created in their careers, I was loaded with ideas!  My intent was to create an abstract face.  But for some reason the first painting I created, if you can call it that, wasn’t a face at all.  It was abstract all right, it’s up to you to decide exactly what it is!!!

Now,  this was the time to let go, and do something I’ve been wanting to do….  It didn’t help that we were using acrylic craft paints.  They don’t dry very fast, and they haven’t a lot of pigment.  It seems to me that if you are truly an artist, it should be a snap to work with whatever you have, but I guess that means I’m not an artist.   After the first abstract, I was so deflated that I almost gave up.   The thing is, I don’t give up!  And that is why I went back to the table, grabbed a canvas,  and created my first “abstract self.”  It’s titled “Now and Then!”

The process was so much fun, and because I was squeezing it in at the end of the class, there was a time constraint.  To me that said…hurry,hurry,hurry!  I think I work better under pressure!

Friday morning I turned on my computer to check my email, and I found this podcast waiting for me.  It was  perfect timing?  After being surrounded with people huffing, and puffing, sighing, and grunting because they were afraid to put a brush to a canvas in fear of making a mistake, I decided to write my blog about this very thing.  The podcast is short, it only takes a few minutes, but worth the time.

 Awakening the Creative…

I hope you enjoy listening to  the ” Intuitive Painting Process. ” Thanks for checking in on Stone Soup, see you soon!

Spectacular!

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At the end of last week, my husband Les, and I decided to take Daisy, our dog on a walk at the marina.  We hadn’t been down there in months, and I thought we would get a little clean, fresh, cool air.   What a surprise we had!

Daisy loved the cool, fresh air, and the not yet sunny atmosphere.  She had a smile on her face the entire time we were down there.

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As we were admiring the yachts, loving the cool fresh air, and the lack of vacationers. a man with three boys rushed past us.  On the way by, he turned and asked if we wanted to see something really amazing.   Something we will probably not get to see again anytime soon!   I became as excited as he and his boys were, and we quickly followed behind them.

I could tell by the excitement in the air that it was going to be good, and it was as good as promised.IMG_0621.jpg

The men on a fishing boat unzipped a large blue bag….  It seemed to be filled with ice, and…… they started pulling out a huge fish.  I was told it was a “Blue Fin Tuna.”  It took three or four of the fishermen to actually lift it up, and I was happy to see they had a large rope on the tail, as my fear was the fish would slip from their grip, and slide right back into the ocean.  Thankfully it didn’t happen.  They struggled for several minutes getting it out of the bag and onto the dolly on the dock.IMG_0622.jpgIMG_0623.jpg

Everyone was watching, whispering, and congratulating the fishermen as they wheeled it onto the gangplank, and up to the scalesIMG_0798.jpg

Spectacular!

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Off they went to the scales…..everyone following, anxious to see the big fish being weighed.

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They placed the scales on the hoist, and started cranking the fish up high enough to be weighed.  Finally it was weighed at 206 lbs.  Maybe not a record, but the biggest fish I ever saw.  1 1/2 hours to reel it in, and that was in rough waters.  The fishermen stood next to the fish for their pictures proud and puffed out, and the excitement continued long after we left.

 

We had a fantastic morning, a long walk, and memories we never would have had if a perfect stranger hadn’t been so excited he wanted to share the experience with us.

On the way back to our car, all three of us stopped to great others on their walk,, Daisy being the greatest greeter ever!

Thanks for stopping by, I hope you enjoyed  Stone Soup.  See you next time.

 

Time out for Art!

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Today…this is art!   Now days everything I do is to be considered creative.

My cooking is sparse since my husband is busy with his music and not home as much, and I prefer eating either raw or steamed fresh foods. When I do cook, I need to document the event……so that’s exactly what I’m doing! It’s also been way to humid to cook much, and we just don’t feel hungry.

When I decided to prepare this recipe, it was a big deal.   My husband, Les loved it. Well, he mostly loved it. The base is zucchini  noodles, and well, I think I might have over cooked them a bit. The other ingredients by themselves, Les doesn’t love, but married together, they were delicious and he did love it.  The fact is, I never told him what was in the sauce. Proof that anything prepared correctly, can be delicious.

I decided to give you the recipe, in the event you might want to prepare something a little different, ie. vegetables.  It was a quick meal with high results.  Les and I had a nice little dinner on our patio, with a soft summer breeze.   Finally, here is a picture of how it looked after I prepared it.  All in all, it was a winner!

Thank you for stopping by Stone Soup, I hope I have inspired you in some way.  See you soon…….

Empty Promises!

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The skies are gray and cloudy on this Monday morning as we eagerly await a promised thunder, lightning, and rain storm.   We had a wonderful winter with many rain storms, but I really want some drama along with that lovely rain.   California is just coming out of a drought, and the Southern part never gets as much as the Northern part.

I was born in Michigan, on the outskirts of Detroit, in Royal Oaks, a then thriving community.  We had many thunder storms, and even as a young child, I loved rain, thunder, and lightning.   In the 50’s, my mother, and all three of us kids would take the train from the Union Station in Los Angeles, all the way to Indiana to visit my Great Grandma. After we visited for a few weeks, we’d all get back on the train, and go to Michigan to visit my Grandma.   Those were some of the most memorable times of my young life.

The three of usl made new friends in both places, and each time we’d visit, we looked forward to re-establishing our friendships. The one thing I loved to do with my sister, and brother was look for fireflies. We’d put them in mason jars, and  the fireflies would be flickering  off, and on as we pretended we were exploring in the neighborhood.  Back then...in olden days, we didn’t need to worry about being out after dark, and we played outside for hours.  By the time Mom called us in to get ready for bed, it was dark outside, and hot and humid in the house, we could hardly sleep at night.  The next day thunder storms would pop up, it would rain, and the whole thing would start over.  We had wonderful trips, and lasting memories to share.

At the end of our vacation, my father would drive to Michigan, pick us up, and we’d then have another adventure on the way home.  Dad would have three weeks off, so we were able to see a lot of America.  The stories I have to tell …Oy!  That will happen nother time…..

 

Today as we wait for the promised storm, all my flowers, and plants are eager to get some of that precious rain.  My plumeria is starting to bloom, and eager for more water.  I even planted a few herbs to start my herb garden.  Sage, chives and, basil are new.   The rosemary is thriving, and my cilantro has seeded itself, and probably won’t be back up until later this year or early next year.  I can’t do without my cilantro, so if it takes too long I’ll buy another plant.

While I’m waiting for rain…I’m planning my next painting, getting my sketch book ready, and ……Oh No,  it seems to be clearing up.  Still a little humid, we received all of 23 1/2 rain drops.  Not enough to entice my plants into growing overnight.   I am so disappointed that it isn’t going to rain, but maybe the next storm will bring rain, and thunder.  In the meantime I’m going to start working on my next sketch, and have a relaxing evening.

By for now, thank you for checking in on Stone Soup.   See you next time……

 

An Unexpected Diva Day!

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Last Saturday was the monthly Diva Day.  The fact is most everyone was either out-of-town, or busy in another way.  So what do you do when your monthly girl day falls apart?   That’s what we did……Maxine and I had our Diva Day together, without the others.   My painting still needs a few finishing touches, they will come in the next day or two.  But it was lots of fun just painting with just the two of us…

It seemed very quiet, and after talking about how, sometimes quiet is good, we decided to put some music on and liven the place up.

Maxine was still working on her art when I left at one in the afternoon, but as always she produces wonderful pieces, and I love watching her work.

While I was packing up, I noticed ants just walking around her home like they owned the place.  We never tracked them down, and haven’t any idea where they came from, or what they were after…..But they cannot stay!

 

Later after lunch, my husband and I went to Trader Joes to pick up a few things, and the entire trip  was nothing but red lights.

Another sit and wait day.

Thank you for visiting Stone Soup, see you soon…..

A Special Day!

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Last week my granddaughter, Sage and I were able to spend an entire day together.  Sage is my little artist, and we always have so much fun together.

I picked Sage up, went to the bank, and together we decided to have lunch at Rubio’s. it was even nice enough to eat on the patio.

After lunch, Sage decided the thing she wanted most was to make art!  Why would I ever disappoint that girl?  So off we went to do art. My car was stuffed with new art supplies.  There were soft pastels, Canson colored sheets of paper, ideas for creating new things, new watercolor pallets for her to try, and two bags of goodies to use.

As you can see, we created for hours ,

and hours…

when we finished with our projects, Sage “tried” to teach me about an app on her iPhone.  Turns out you really can’t teach an old dog new tricks.   Apparently there are some things I just don’t get!

However, before I headed back home that day, Sage did manage to show me one more app that I’m not sure I know what to use it for.  This is what happens when I spend the day with my eleven year old granddaughter.

Thanks for checking in on Stone Soup, see you next time. Don’t forget to check Zebra Designs & Destinations for a little art, and adventure. It’s Thursdays Time out for Art!