Category Archives: Mixed media

Never Give Up

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It’s a strange thing when you can’t give up on something you’ve started. Is that a Type A personality? Determination? Stupidity? Or maybe a little of all of those things.  The hats I’ve worn are many, and I know things.  Just enough to get me into trouble sometimes.  But, if I don’t know something I research, read, network,  I get my information, and I get whatever it is done!

This is a little off the easel, but when my bathroom faucet started leaking, I foolishly thought it needed a washer. I’ll just run to Home Depot and pick them up.   Little did I know the newer faucets now have cartridges, and thinking about it why not?  Replacement washers are maybe 69 cents, while cartridges it turns out are $70.00 plus.  I guess I’m not keeping up with the times.

Anyway, when we remodeled the bathroom,  I put in all German Grohe  faucets. I didn’t think anything about metric. I loved the designs, that’s really all I cared about.  ……Now the fun begins.

After watching multiple videos on YouTube, it seemed simple enough to me.  I haven’t repaired any faucets or appliances in years, so this I knew I could tackle without any problems.   Are you starting to see where this is going?

We have a small bathroom with a vessel sink, and the faucet is nicely placed in the back corner.  On thee back of the handle there is a  plug covering a recessed  screw  with barely enough room to hold a small mirror to see what you need to do.   I however did get the plug  out easily.  The screw, well that’s another thing all together…

This is going to be a piece of cake!

Oh, I realized I needed  an Allen wrench to remove this screw, no problem, we have lots of those…….   I was sure we had the right allen wrench!

Several minutes later we are in the car headed for, yep…..Home Depot!

It was a good thing Home Depot was open on Sunday because that was my free day for projects.  Fortunately, Ron helped us and knew exactly what I was trying to accomplish.   He sold me metric allen wrenches, and just to be on the safe side I took his advice and bought a small can of Spray and Release just in case.   God bless Ron, he didn’t steer me wrong!

After spraying everything just for good measure, and waiting the proper thirty minutes for it to work.  I was able to get behind the faucet with a metric wrench that actually unscrewed, and allowed me to remove the handle.  We’re just getting started but so far so good.  Now taking off the handle…We decided to give the handle a spray since it had been everything  else had been difficult to undo earlier.  This time we had lunch, and gave it another quick spray for good luck.

All rested up and ready to go, I went into the bathroom to finish the sink, my husband following behind me with suggestions on how I should best tackle the next step.   I referred to the instructions which were conveniently written in German…..I had no idea what they were telling me.  The schematic was barely more helpful, but it did have metric measurements written on the parts, and that did help.  The handle finally came off with a little coaxing and tugging.

After  waiting two weeks for the part to be shipped from Grohe East Coast, the only Grohe distributor in the United States, I hated the thought of ordering another part from them.  I’m determined to find a metric wrench to get into the recessed area to remove the large hex shaped nut so I can actually change out the cartridge.   Les and I went all over, but then it was Sunday and the real plumbing stores are closed.

Monday morning after a cup of coffee, I started calling, reading, researching on the internet without any luck..   I even asked them, ” if they were installing this faucet what would they use? ”   No answer!  They had no idea what they would do, but I knew they wouldn’t give up the hefty hourly price they would charge me if I gave up and called them.

Last resort,  Amazon, Ebay, Grohe……  

I couldn’t find what I was looking for on Amazon or Ebay,  believe me I was disappointed, but I have a motto that says….“Never Give Up!”    The other motto is,  “Fake it ’till you make it!”  I’m not a plumber, but I’m determined not to pay  $100.+ for something I can do.

Finally, I went onto the Grohe website, and after searching all over I found the part I was looking for.   GASP!   Grohe wanted $50.00 plus shipping for this simple metric wrench.  What a rip off, it’s just a simple metric plumbers wrench.  After the shock wore off I went back to Amazon, this time finding a Grohe wrench at a slight bit more.  The price was a few dollars higher, but I could get it in two days.   Finally I put it in my basket, and waited before I purchased it.   I was still in shock, and admittedly angry.  Angry because I knew there must be something less expensive available somewhere I just hadn’t found it, or hadn’t thought of it.

I sat for a few minutes looking at my cart, silly me,  I don’t know what I thought would happen but before I pressed buy, I backtracked to look once more.   Scrolling down just for digestion purposes,  there it was …….  

Another option for the wrench, the wrench to install, and as an another option, the same wrench from Grohe.  Was I seeing it correctly,  Grohe was $50. the knockoff $14.99.  The Universe is blessing me with another option.

All the reviews mentioned,  they had used the less expensive wrench on their Grohe faucet, and it worked fine.  I’m still in shock, but I’m much happier.   With a satisfied feeling, I can now sit back and relax while waiting for the wrench to arrive.

Thank you Universe!

Thanks for stopping by to read Stone Soup.   It was a little outside the box this time, but that’s life!  See you soon.

 

Copper Workshop Starts Soon

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Recently I took  a three-day oil on copper workshop. I worked hard not to have any expectations. For me, this is the best, most open way to go. If I don’t have expectations it allows me to take in and learn everything I can.

Oil on Copper

The workshop is the brainchild of artist Richard Hawk, he shares openly his ideas and secrets. Richard came along at just about the perfect time in my life. Sure I would have loved doing all this twenty or thirty years ago, but was Richard ready to teach all these interesting techniques and methods? Was I open and ready to learn, and apply all that I am now?  It’s all questionable isn’t it?

Oil on Copper

After taking this workshop, this is what has oozed out of me.

The end of July will be a second Copper Workshop.  More information; the next step I’m told.  I am excited this time, and I do have expectations.  Expectations because I know how great the first workshop was and how excited I was when it was finished.  This time will be even more exciting, because I have already purchased oil colors to add to what I have and copper to paint on, so you bet, I am excited!  I can’t wait to show you all the good stuff….

Thank you for stopping by and checking on Stone Soup.

Working With Oil

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Recently I’ve been working with oil colors, and I love them. I love the feel when I paint, and the way they blend and mix. Am I crazy for working with a different paint? Probably, but I knew when I took the copper workshop that I was opening up a can of worms. And open it, I did!

I’ve only completed three oils on copper, but meanwhile I cannot stay away from my oil paints. A girl has to practice doesn’t she?

The painting above is a little practice painting since it’s been years since I’ve drawn faces, or figures. Each time should be a little better, until I either decide I love it or I don’t want to do it anymore.

I’m just going to keep abstracting until I’m happy with the results. Until then I’m onto the next painting.

Thanks for stopping to check Stone Soup out, see you soon.

Working With Cold Wax

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Last year I bought some cold wax to play with.  A friend of mine uses it on her oil paintings, and being a rebel, I decided to try it on watercolor and acrylic.  I had no idea what i was doing, and couldn’t find any instructions for using it.  Maybe I just didn’t try hard enough, or….maybe the timing was off, and i really wasn’t ready for cold wax.  Either way, it sit on my shelf with all the other products that I had to have proudly waving at me from time to time, making sure I don’t forget the possibilities it holds.

This morning I was looking for something else on YouTube when I ran across this video.  After watching it, I now have a better idea of the possibilities, and I do love possibilities.  You know I will be experimenting with cold wax very soon, and maybe one of you will want try it, experiment with it, or even decide it is the perfect effect for what you are creating.

Either way,  I hope you enjoy the information, maybe try it out, and let me know how it goes.

Thanks for taking time to check out Karen’s Stone Soup.  See you soon…

How I Get My Ideas…

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Most of the time our creative juices flow easily. However every once in a while we all come to a screeching halt, and we haven’t any ideas. There isn’t anything worse than being stuck without a clue as to how to get creative again.

Sometimes I paint rocks as houses, flowers, faces, or even bugs. My favorite is a ladybug. Our garden is filled with ladybugs, flowers, faces, even one curled up milk snake. I know it sounds crazy, but it usually helps to open up the bottle neck, and let the creativity flow once again.

Since I get emails from Bob Burridge frequently, I thought I’d post one. This particular video started me thinking about my childhood, and how far back I could go. What part of my childhood would I want to bring forward onto a canvas. As I thought about it, I started remembering holding class and teaching all my stuffed animals math, and reading. Or dressing up in my mother’s shoes, and hats with gloves. Maybe even birthday parties, or my “16” birthday party.

What ever I choose, there are always options to make a series from them. Even if you have to pull out your creative license. After all, this is the same as writing a story, just with paint!

When I watched the latest video Bob Burridge posted It got me thinking about all this, and I thought maybe it would help all of you as well.  I hope I’m right.

Thank you for taking time to read Stone Soup,  see you next time….