Into the Blue

A thank you card I left with the tip for the maid who did our room each day.

So we’re off again, to a Mediterranean island where the sun always shines. Well, almost always. We have in fact, on a past visit,  walked barefoot on the beach the day after snow, with the mountains behind us still white capped. Surreal but glorious.  However, that was four years ago and much earlier in the year; we are expecting temperatures in the mid 20s this week.  For those of you for whom this is the norm, lucky you. It’s mid May and we are leaving behind us temperatures in single figures.

Got a new cozzie (swimsuit) and I’ve packed the Factor 50. Going to pop down to town this afternoon and pick up a couple of inflatable toys to play in the pool. No, not THAT sort of inflatable toy and no, the loved one and I have not yet descended into second childhood, not quite – we are on holiday with our son, his wife AND our youngest granddaughter!!!! She’s almost three and a delight. We have taken her out for picnics a couple of times in the last few weeks and it has been wonderful fun. Exhausting, but fun nonetheless.

I’m taking crochet, drawing equipment, my Kindle and tablet with me, working on the assumption that kiddy play will not take up my entire week. And if it does? Well, it will be because I wanted it to, so that’ll be fine. I therefore suspect that I will not be participating in the Diva Challenge No 316, or, at least, not punctually. I will almost certainly do the Challenge but not post it on time.

There’s a Facebook group called “Zentangle, Tangled and Journaled too”, which I read and occasionally join in. Since it involves journals and I have the self discipline of a newt, I don’t keep up with it very often but they have come up with a Summer project which I plan to take part in.

Each person who chooses to participate will select what little size they want to work on (bijou, atc, standard tile, 3Z tile, teeny tiny journal page, etc.) Whatever is chosen, the idea is to remain consistent with that choice every day from June 1 to August 31 and to make a cohesive collection. Working small is the suggestion, since the idea that started this was to build a habit, and if there is a lot to do, it makes it harder to keep up.

The pages inside are the same colour as the cover and I will stick the bijou tiles in, one or two to a page.

So I’ve done the cover of my brand new journal, cut out a couple of dozen bijou tiles ready to start and now I’m waiting in excited anticipation for the thing to begin. I’ll keep you posted.

The other Facebook group of which I am a member is Zentangle Artist Trading Card Swap, which I take part in once a month. This month, well, June actually, the Challenge is to produce;

… a Bijou tile and  a 3 ½” tile. Then you will attach the Bijou tile onto the larger tile by making two ½ inch slits for opposite corners to hold the Bijou tile on the tile. The Bijou tile may be placed anywhere on the tile.


I will probably be producing about half a dozen of these and, as you can see above,  I have already started the first one. I’ve used Margaret Bremner’s Rope – not sure if it’s intended to be a pattern or a string but I’m trying to make it spread from the Bijou to the bigger tile.

the patterns are Jasmin and Slonkel, both new to me and i like them. Slonkel was a bit of a mindbender but it’s part of the fun.

And this is the second one, which I am also using for the diva Challenge 316, as it is stripes. I also think it might be better with the stripes vertical rather than horizontal but it’s too late now. I like the patterns, both new to me – Jasmin and Slonkel. I’ve not properly “got” slonkel yet but i like it a lot. Jasmin is easier and I can see both patterns being very useful when I get to grips with them.

I’ve also tried a few Dingbatz, which is a fun way to use just a little patterning to great effect. I suspect people will be getting birthday cards that have been dingbatted this year. Here are my first attempts, along with the thank you card at the top of the post.

Different stamp and colour for a change.
Stamp for the lettering and the rest is freehand.


Well we’re back and it was great. Deepened the tan – I now look like an overfilled satchel. Had a load of fun on the beach and in the sea with Isla and wore my new cozzie, somewhat to the distress of any onlookers, I fear, but that’s just tough.

And, having done all the washing and actually had nice enough weather to hang it all out to dry, it’s Diva Day and a new Challenge.

So my idea is to use an image as your string – and here i’ve used a model from a fashion magazine.  I sometimes find that shiny magazine paper doesn’t really play well with Microns.  So i thought i’d just photo copy the image (my home printer has a copy function) and then cut it out and glue it onto a zentangle tile.  And that’s what i’ve done here.

You could also cut out the image and glue it onto a tile, as Vonnie suggested last night… or you can go through your stash of fashion mags, or craft mags, or use an interesting photo in a grocery flier..

I wasn’t very keen on this and put it on the back burner in the hope that a stroke of genius would occur. Hmmm. But then real life broke into my safe little world with the bomb attack at the Manchester Arena, less than 50 miles away. Like so many others, I felt angry and vengeful and bitter and vicious and I had to remind myself that there are people suffering out there and my feelings and small mindedness really don’t count for anything in the scheme of things. So I gave myself a little talking to about forgiveness and love v hate and remembered that, as a child of the sixties, for me love is supposed to be the answer.

The original photo, saved for my daughter in law, who is crazy about VW camper vans.

And I then stomped off upstairs to hide myself in some Zentangle, needing the Zen rather than the tangling, which is not my norm. Looking for images to use as a string, I started clearing out stuff that I had saved to the hard drive for who knows what reason. And there I found a picture of a VW camper van and it all came together. Peace, love and understanding, at least for half an hour or so. So my Diva Challenge this week was a brief escape from the nastiness that sometimes turns to horror and for a little while, I felt better.

If you close your eyes and listen very carefully, you can hear Sgt Pepper playing. You can, honest…

And that’s it for this week, world. Forget my usual injunction to be good-ish, be safe, just be safe.


13 thoughts on “Into the Blue

  1. Thank you for your post, as always you’ve taken us on a journey with you. I love your card for the maid. They so often go unthanked and un-noticed. And your Combi is fabulous. My eldest, who at 17 has “discovered” the Beetles, said it looks like it’s heading for the Yellow Submarine. And yes, the world can be awful and vicious, but you are right – Love is free.

  2. I do envy you and your travels! I’m anticipating the start of the Summer Journal Project and just hope I can keep up too;-) I hope my goals of creating collection of something I will actually use and reference at a later date aren’t too lofty. I love your VW and your dingbatz cards are a delight;-)

  3. I like your tangled picture of the VW bus very much and your dingbatz cards are wonderful. I’m glad you had a nice trip and enjoyed it, so now let’s the summer come to western Europe too! Kind regards from Belgium and wish you all the best.

  4. You did a marvelous job on your tiles. I particularly love the dingsbatz tiles, your double tiles, your summer 2017 cover (countdown 6 days!), our vw tile…oh, well, I guess I love ALL your tiles.

  5. Love your Summer Journal cover! Simple and beautiful! The VW is great; you definitely used it as a string as directed! Very cute and perfect for helping to adjust the thinking, I’m sure. 🙂

  6. I have been very MIA with the Diva challenges even though I’ve been doing them religiously—make that, regularly. I have this notion that I must accompany any Diva challenge composition with a blog post and I’ve been suffering from writer’s block so that’s my pathetic excuse anyway. I was blasted out of my writer’s block by the Manchester horror, albeit rather late in the week (like a few hours ago). Peace. Out.

    1. You could do a sort of omnibus blog and show off everything you’ve been doing. I’ve seen a couple of Aloha based pieces and was rather impressed. As for the Manchester thing – what is coming out now is that the security services were warned about the guy but didn’t act. Arrests now are small comfort to the families. Hey ho.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s