Tag Archives: nature

Each Day A New Opportunity


I’m laying in bed looking out the window, with clean, crispy fresh air pushing it’s way into the room giving me newfound energy to start my day. What will this day bring me? Will it stay cool, or get hot & muggy? Whatever it brings, I am ready and willing to jump out of bed, brush my teeth, wash my face, and start my beautiful day with a cup of coffee, and a little meditation. I know, It’s not for everyone…some people would rather have a cup of tea!


I have always loved the coolness in the morning, especially when it’s a bit overcast, and quiet. When my children were small I would get up early so I could sit quietly with a cup of coffee, and just start my day slowly while the kids were asleep. That was the plan, but many times my plan was foiled by an aggressive little munchkin getting up too early, and reuining my plan.

Today after feeding my kitty Kramer, and letting Daisy dog out, I’m drinking coffee with my husband, but the kids are grown, and gone. The things that inspire me aren’t the things that inspired me many years ago when my kids were small. Now I get inspired by birds chirping, or a gentle breeze in the air. Some days I’m inspired to read, or paint, sketching out on our patio, or take a walk through the neighborhood. Things I couldn’t do when I had a young family.

On this morning with sweetness in the air, I’m inspired to listen to the crows. They are very verbal this morning, and I feel like they are letting me know to “keep looking.” Sitting on my patio, I’m trying to keep looking, but I’m also trying to figure out what else the crows are telling me. In my Animal Speak Book by Ted Andrews, it tells me that crows bring you magic and creativity. OK! Now we’re talking. I’m all about magic, and creativity….bring it on.

Even though I am not interested in venturing too far from home, I still very much invested in nature. For now nature means to me, that I walk through my back yard where peace, & serenity hang in the air. I love my trees, & it won’t surprise some of you to know I even talk to the trees, & the birds. Ok, so they don’t talk back in the way we do, but they do respond if you pay attention. I try to pay attention knowing if I’m really quiet & concentrate, I will hear their answers!

Thank you for stopping to read Stone Soup, I’m really happy to share with you my thoughts, & ideas about my life. See you next time. Karen

A Day of Inspiration


Recently my son Chris, and myself spent a day at San Diego Botanical Gardens.  it was a trip we had been talking about for months.  As it turned out, it was perfect timing.

There was a nice breeze,  a little cool, and the most beautiful flowers were just  growing there and blooming for all of our joy. Chris and myself were filled with beauty and good feelings.  We were in awe over the vivid colors and beauty of the gardens.

I know many places we live don’t have special gardens dedicated to the preservation of plants, however I see the beauty in even the weediest of places.  As an artist, even dried weeds hold beauty and magic.

Many years ago my friend Cathy Cary, had windows in her home with blue bottles and the simplest of a dried weed setting inside the bottle.   I was so impressed with the simplicity, I frequently do the same thing.

Every time I get uptight about my art not being perfect, Chris reminds me, “Nature is perfect in it’s imperfection!”  Everyone knows I don’t do perfect anyway, so why would I be uptight about perfection?

To me there is something moving about a poppy waving at me in the breeze, i love them.

Oh What A Beautiful Morning!


Good morning everyone.  I awakened this morning with the sun shinning in my bedroom window.   Bouncing out of bed all I could think of was,  how blessed I am to be living in beautiful Southern California.  The weather is moderate, temperatures are mostly perfect, and we have a roof over our heads.  Schmaltzy I know, but my heart is filled with joy at the prospects of the day.

With a cup of coffee by my side, and some Nora Jones singing in the background I’m thinking of all of you and the creativity each of you have to offer.  Many of us don’t feel like we have anything to offer, and creating anything is just not worth it.  My feeling is that everything we do is worth something.  If we create for the love of creating anything, that’s a good thing.  I have to remember, “It’s the journey, not the destination!”

Wednesday some of my friends and myself were playing with our iPads.  We were trying to find an app that allowed us even more options for creativity, and then learn to use that app.    That’s where the picture came from.  It’s an old picture of my old self with red hair,  feathers for earrings, and glasses.   An abstract watercolor from Sketch Master, one  the apps I’ve collected.  Just a start in the world of iPads, something my friends and I are just learning, and  It’s fun and different for me, but even though it’s something I don’t want to get involved in, there is something to experimentation.

I do love to experiment! 

This is pretty cool also!  A negative of a picture.  Maybe this would help with learning to negative shape paint, or sketch.  It would be a great exercise for learning to draw.  Can you see how this might be helpful?  I always try new things, it never hurts.

Have a great weekend. and look at your surroundings as if there is information to be used in your creativity!

I’ve Never Seen This Before!




Lately  while doing a lot of resting, I’ve been snooping around YouTube.  It’s amazing just what one can find when one spends enough time snooping, and resting all at the same time!  Some would call this…Multi-resting!

This little demo is a  fascinating form of art, and something I’ve certainly have never seen before.  It gives me ideas, and triggers inspiration in so many directions.  I hope it will do the same for you!

If you do experiment with this technique, or it inspires you to go in a different direction,  please share it with the rest of us.  Facebook is a great way to share what  you’ve  created, or learned, or email it to me directly, (KarenSamenow@me.com) and I’ll include it in my blog so we can all see.

Thank you all for reading Stone Soup, and  following me, in doing so, you  give me inspiration and keep me going  as well.  I hope you enjoy….

Good Morning Tuesday



Today is a beautiful day for art! Even if it’s raining, or cold and icy, it is always a beautiful day to paint!

I ‘ve been dabbling a little in art, and I’m starting to get re-inspired once again. Unfortunately, I have dry spells. As I’ve been trying to figure out why I’m having a dry spell, this is the obvious, and what I’ve come to realize is the demise of my creativity.
It has been a while since I’ve taken any trips or visited a museum. With winter, and cold wet weather, come hibernation. I guess I’m not only a Goldie Locks Girl, but I tend to hibernate like a bear the minute we have a time change, it starts getting dark early, and winter sets in for real. This is not beneficial to any artist, but particularly not to me.

We all need creative energy, and although it has been the topic of many conversations, where do we get that creativity?  I tend to hunker down at home the minute it gets dark, and in all fairness by the afternoon I get tired and run out of energy.  At that point, vegging out seems the best option.  If I cook, it needs to be started early so I haven’t any choice but to finish for dinner.  If I paint, that too needs to stop by around three in the afternoon.  Three seems to be the vegging hour for me.  I can get quit a lot finished between the hours of nine in the morning and three in the afternoon.

My husband Les and I have been talking about vacations this year, and one of the places I love going to is Yosemite National Park.  There is something about connecting with nature in a forest of huge ancient trees that washes away all the stress and dirt from the big city.  Walking amongst the trees, listening to wildlife, finding little treasures like leaves that inspire, or  a branch that has fallen, walking in the streams, and visiting a meadow with deer grazing is what I need to replenish my creative energy.  There are other things also that help with creativity, like a gallery or museum, heck it all helps.  But, hunkering down in a heated hark house away from people, and places doesn’t do it!


My blogging has been sporadic lately, and not what I had anticipated, but I’ve been blogging now for three plus years, and even if I’m on vacation, my blog has gone out  five days a week.  I don’t want to give up my blog, nor do I want to give up creating.  Not surprisingly, I want to paint, and cut back on my blog for now.

I’m still here, I’m just busy creating a masterpiece!  As a friend once told me, it’s never going to hang in La Louvre!   I laugh because years ago I was in sales, traveling sales one might say.  Each day of the week I had a large handful of clients to visit, and supply them with product for their hair salons.  What I haven’t told you is that I was driving a truck stocked with all kinds of products that the clients used on a daily basis.  Isn’t life a journey?

I loved being able to be on the side lines of the beauty business, and will always miss the people, the smell of the products,  and the exhaustion of the tight schedule that took me all over San Diego, and into Temecula in Riverside County.  This story I tell you because creativity comes from everywhere, and manifests in many ways.  I didn’t have time or energy in those days to paint, but I was creative in the way I helped the cosmetologists, and store owners.


I leave you today with the idea that we all need to go places, and do things that will inspire us, and fill us  up with creativity.  Even a walk maybe on the beach to breathe in clean fresh air is a big part of energizing. A hike in the mountains, down a path, or in a meadow.  Where ever it is, I wish you much happiness, and creativity on your own journeys.


Thursday Time Out for Art



I’ve been making an effort to sketch, and maybe paint each day.  It isn’t easy when it seems everyone want’s a piece of my time.  If I can take it early in the morning, I’m in luck.  I’m an early morning person.  As the day wears on, I lose all my energy, rendering me Toast!  Burnt toast at that.

This week I did this little sketch, and had to add watercolor just because…I could!  Simple, imperfect in its imperfection, and that’s what I like most.  As you can see, I was playing with mixing greens.  I love mixing my greens, and rarely used premixed greens any more.

Check out Time out for art on Zebra Design & Destination.