Celebrating Friendship at Stony Brook State Park

Stony Brook State Park, Finger Lakes Region, NY - Girlfriend Camp GFC 2019 - August, 2019

Stony Brook State Park, Finger Lakes Region, NY – Girlfriend Camp GFC 2019 – August, 2019

Celebrating Friendship at Stony Brook Park.

Climbing stairs

Crossing bridges

Converging pathways

Circulating blood

Conversing thoughts

Circumventing hazards

Communing with nature

Connecting souls

Contemplating life

Considering options

Challenging opinions

Cooperating ideas

Confessing truths

Collecting memories

Celebrating friendship

#GFC2019 Stony Brook State Park, Finger Lakes Region, NY - August 2019

#GFC2019 Stony Brook State Park, Finger Lakes Region, NY – August 2019

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

Celebrating Friendship at Stony Brook State Park

Cherish the Moments

Sunset over Lake Ontario, Rochester, NY - August, 2019

Sunset over Lake Ontario, Rochester, NY – August, 2019

Cherish the Moments.

As the sun sets
and closes another day,

collect moments
to cherish as memories

on this page…
in this chapter.

For this time…
in this season.

For every day may not be good,
but there is something good in every day.

Find it.
Hold on to it.

Cherish the moments.
Treasure the memories.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Red Cardinal Watercolor

Red Cardinal Watercolor.

I was away this past week on a wonderful “GFC” (Girlfriend Camp) trip, followed by a couple days of grandie girls and family fun.

This past Sunday afternoon, after over a week away from any ARTing, I found a bit of time in my art studio to paint.

I always fear when I’m away from it for a while, I will “forget” how to do it.

I decided to do a bird, then chose a cardinal.  I had some Simon & Garfunkel playing.  I felt completely relaxed, and just painted.  No drawing.  No warm-up.  And I got lucky and loved the result.

Just in case it turned out, and because I’ve been asked about sharing my process and “teaching,” I took a few quick iPhone photos of the steps I took along the way to share with you.

I found a cardinal photo on my ipad and then started with the eye placed where I thought was about right on a 10×16 sheet of Arches Cold Press.  I used Daniel Smith Indigo and Quinacridone Gold, leaving some white for the highlights in the eye.

When painting loose, you need to have a focal point, and when a bird or animal, a good focal point is the eye and/or beak/nose.  So from the eye, I used a wet brush to outline the beak, then added some Daniel Smith permanent deep red and water to blend the colors.

I deepened some of the colors and added the crown shape of the cardinals head and the shape of its neck.  This is pretty much all the “detail” I wanted in this painting.

From here, I added some more of the red and some cadmium yellow.

Then I just got super loose adding some violet and blue and green gold, lots of water for movement, and more indigo splashes.  I held the painting up vertically to let the drips run.

And this is what resulted.  I’m happy with how it turned out, and so glad to know I didn’t “forget” how to do it after being away for a while.

This painting – as an original, prints, and greeting cards – is available in our McKinneyX2Designs Etsy Shop and at Berry Vine Gifts in BradfordWoods, PA.

Have a wonderful day, and don’t be afraid to fearlessly and joyfully go for whatever it is you love to do!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Classic Oatmeal Scotchie Cookies

Classic Oatmeal Scotchie Cookies.

Cookie week continues!

I have been making these classic oldie-but-goodie cookies quite a bit lately and realized I have never shared the recipe here.  Not that you couldn’t likely find it elsewhere or directly on the Quaker Oats website, but I wanted to document it here as one of the classics I make and also highly recommend it to those who may have never heard of or haven’t thought about in a while.

They might seem a bit ordinary after the past two recipes this week (Toffee Coffee Oatmeal Cookies and Macadamia Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies), but I promise they are (still) an amazing cookie!

These are one of hubby’s faves.  A chewy oatmeal cookie bursting with bits of butterscotch yumminess.

Do you have a classic cookie recipe that takes you back to a place and time?  Takes you back to a great childhood feeling?  To me, these are that kind of “feel good” cookie.  They are simple, but delicious, and a sure crowd pleaser!

Hope you will give them a try…. or a try again!

Here is how I make them.

Classic Oatmeal Scotchies*

  • Servings: 3 dozen large cookies
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Pound (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 3/4 Cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 Cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1-1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1-1/4 Cup(s) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 Cups Quaker® Oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)
  • 1 package (11 oz.) NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Butterscotch Chips

Directions:

Heat oven to 375°F. In large bowl, beat butter and sugars until creamy. Add eggs and vanilla; beat well. Add baking soda, salt and flour; mix well. Add oats and butterscotch morsels; mix well. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto baking stone or ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes. Cool 5 minutes on cookie sheets; remove to wire rack. Cool completely.

These cookies freeze well. I simply store in the freezer in Ziploc Freezer Bags.

Enjoy!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

A Purple Parakeet in Watercolor

Purple Parakeet Original Watercolor by Jodi McKinney 11×14

A Purple Parakeet in Watercolor.

On my purple kick this past weekend, I created a random splash of color and topped it with cling wrap to create an abstract design.

I often like to do this when I don’t have anything special in mind to paint, but just want to create!  Then I look at it – sometimes for days or longer – until I see something appear.

My oldest DIL and I were at a local event this past Saturday at Quality Gardens and Bloom Cafe in Valencia, PA with our McKinneyX2Designs art and signs, and a man asked me if I ever painted a parakeet.

I hadn’t ever thought to, but when I looked at my “blob” of paint the next day, a parakeet appeared!  Mind over matter??!!

So I painted this.  I don’t even know the man’s name (who sweetly purchased a copy each of Klaus the Mouse, and Lucas the Lucky Lion for his grown artist daughter), but this painting is lovingly dedicated to him wherever he is, in honor of the sweet parakeet he and his wife recently loved and lost.  May they somehow feel the love.  And if he ever sees this, I will surely gift him with a print!

Happy #WorldWatercolorMonth!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Original, prints, and cards available at McKinneyX2Designs and Berry Vine Gifts!

A Patch of Purple Delphiniums

A Patch of Purple Delphiniums Original Watercolor 11×14 by Jodi McKinney

A Patch of Purple Delphiniums.

Splashing some green and purple this past weekend –
very loosely for an initial wash,
then adding additional loose detail
to somewhat resemble a patch of purple delphiniums!

This watercolor was inspired by Mary at HeartandSoul974‘s flowery blog post last week.  We are not even sure if they are delphiniums in her photo, but that is what I am calling my watercolor, because….
well….
because I can!

Happy #WorldWatercolorMonth!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Original, prints, and cards available at McKinneyX2Designs and Berry Vine Gifts!

 

Babysitting our Grandpuppy

Trevor McKinney Original Watercolor – 8×10 by Jodi McKinney

Babysitting our Grandpuppy.

As most of you know that have been hanging around here for any length of time, I am the fortunate grandma of two beautiful granddaughters to my oldest son and daughter-in-law.  You may not know, however, that I have an adorable grandpuppy to my youngest son and daughter-in-law, and we had the pleasure of having him over for a weekend vacation when his Dad and Mom went away on a little trip recently.

Charlie was such a good uncle to his young nephew, Trevor.

He got a bit annoyed at times with Trevor’s puppy energy and enthusiasm, but he properly warned and then gently taught him when “enough was enough!”

It was so fun having sweet Trevor around.  He never left my side, and I was told he may have missed us as much as we missed him when he went home.  He often comes to visit, however, so we are sure lucky!

I just had to paint a little portrait of his sweet puppy face and eyes for his Dad and Mom.  I cropped and used a bit of artistic license from the photo above I took from his recent stay.

Love you Trevy!

Happy #WorldWatercolorMonth!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Orange you Glad-iolus?

Orange Gladiolus Original Watercolor 11×14 by Jodi McKinney

Orange you Glad-iolus?

My Dad recently texted me an image of an orange gladiolus stem in a vase a neighbor had placed on their porch.

He thought it might make a good painting subject.

So I painted it.

And this is my loose “impressionistic” version.

I hope it makes him and Mom II smile.

Hey Dad, “Orange you Glad-iolus I did?” 🙂

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Happy #WorldWatercolorMonth