Sunday, February 7, 2016

Amarylis! Ama Right?

It is that time of year! Beautiful blooming Amarylis everywhere. Such a gift when all around is frozen and white.These are South African flowers, exotic and rewarding. The rate that they grow is spectacular! You can almost hear them:) Alien and alive! I am fascinated by them and they always lift my spirits. Also... no need to throw them out when done!  They can easily bloom again with some help. Read here to learn how!
Peggy's Cove in the snow.... brrr. I wonder if each house has a blooming Amarylis inside dispensing warmth and cheer. I'm off to help shoot a music video this afternoon.Should be fun! Have a great day...xo

Friday, February 5, 2016

12 Tips to Improve a Lousy Day, Week....

How to Improve a Lousy Day......

1. Resist the urge to “treat” yourself. Often, the things we choose as “treats” aren’t good for us. The pleasure lasts a minute, but then feelings of guilt, loss of control, and other negative consequences just deepen the lousiness of the day. So when you find yourself thinking, “I’ll feel better after I have a few beers…a pint of ice cream…a cigarette…a new pair of jeans,” ask yourself – will it REALLY make you feel better? Sure but then...It might make you feel worse!
2. Do something nice for someone else. “Do good, feel good” – this really works. Be selfless, if only for selfish reasons. If you are outside yourself you cannot be inside yourself:)
3. Distract yourself.  Watching a funny movie or TV show is a great way to take a break, pop into a bookstore/coffeeshop or the library and browse through some magazines,or re-read beloved classics of children's literature. Things to fill you mind with new positive thoughts.
4. Seek inner peace through outer order. Soothe yourself by tackling a messy closet, an untidy desk, your email folder or crowded counter tops. The sense of tangible progress, control, and orderliness can be a comfort. Create a vista of calm for yourself. One less thing to fret about and a real boost
5. Tell yourself, “Well, at least I…” Get some things accomplished. Yes, you had a horrible day, but at least you went to the gym, or played with your kids, or walked the dog, or read your children a story, or recycled. Remind yourself of those things...It might even be as basic as "At least I got out of bed ! "
6. Exercise is an extremely effective mood booster – But if you go for a walk, make it a long one:) The first half will be spent dwelling on your problems and then as the time passes your thoughts will shift elsewhere.
7. Stay in contact. When you’re having a lousy day, it’s tempting to retreat into isolation but contact with other people boosts mood. So try to see or talk to people, especially people you’re close to. Send text messages if you are not up for chatting...
8. It’s a cliché, but things really will look brighter in the morning. Go to bed early and start the next day anew. Also, sleep deprivation puts a drag on mood in the best of circumstances, so a little extra sleep will do you good.
9. Remind yourself of your other identities. If you feel like a loser at work, send out a blast message to engage with college friends. If you think members of the organization you belong to are mad at you, don’t miss the spinning class where everyone knows and likes you. We are more than one sided!
10. Keep perspective. Ask yourself: “Will this matter in a month? In a year? Seriously....think of things you were in a panic about or desperately upset about. Do they still affect you like that?
11. Write it down. When something horrible is consuming my mind, I find that if I write up a paragraph or two about the situation, I get immense relief through processing it with a different side of my brain.
12. Be grateful. Remind yourself that a lousy day isn’t a catastrophic day. Be grateful that you’re still on the “lousy” spectrum. Probably, things could be worse. and BREATHE

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Crispy Curried Chickpea Snacks

I made these yesterday and would have made a double batch but I just had one can of chickpeas:( They are yummy just as a snack but equally delicious scattered on top of a salad or soup! They have a secret ingredient that makes them crispy and a bit lower fat than the usual snack! Hummus! Hooray!

Crispy Curried Chickpeas!

1 can of drained chickpeas (19oz)
2 Tbsp Hummus
1 Tbsp each Curry powder, Onion powder, Garlic powder

1.Put all into bowl and mix well until everything is coated. 
2. Spread out on parchment lined baking tray.
3. 375 degrees for 25 min or so until crispy!

Make a double batch if you can. Also you can switch up the spicing to whatever you like! Barbecue spice or Cajun or whatever tickles your palate. Enjoy! 

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Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Modern, Folkart, Impressionistic, Surrealist, Fauvist, Illustrative....

I'm always at a loss when someone says what kind of art do you do? What style of painting is it? I really have no idea what to say. I have a few different styles I like to paint in and sometimes they get combined without any real intention to do so. I paint what pleases me and I hope it pleases others. So much depends on my mood. My style is my own:)

Because of the colour and simple themes, people often think folk art. I applied to the Lunenburg Folk Art Festival once and was told, "No, sorry your work is not folk art, we cannot accept it" Ha.So there you have it. Who knows.....

I love colour and strong graphic composition. Most of what I do is off the cuff with no pre-planning. I've only used a reference photo once and that was of the small harbour at Peggy's Cove. Something maybe I should try more of... I do love painting large dramatic skies and landscapes,with the sky dominating. Paintings that take your imagination and thoughts elsewhere:)

So.... what am I painting today? A small girl reading a book with cat cozy by her side and a window with a view.....

Have a creative day xo

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Groundhog Day

George's Island in Halifax Harbour....... Amazing how some clouds and a bit of light can transform a familiar scene into something spectacular! This was taken in December. Cold winter light. I guess that applies to most things in life....shine a little light on them and you see something different:)
Day two of February. The Groundhog saw it's shadow today, which actually in my books is a good thing! It means the sun is shining this morning:)
So my day has painting in it.......hope yours has something in it that will bring you closer to your goals.......xo

Monday, February 1, 2016

First day of Celtic Spring!

Happy February1st! 
St Brigid's Day! 
First day of Celtic Spring! 
This is the halfway point folks. (sort of....)  We are on the home stretch to Spring:)

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Last Day of January!

Point Pleasant Park in Halifax looking out to sea! This is one of the few paintings I have kept for myself:) A view I am very familiar with as many people here in Halifax are.

Winter is moving along. So far so good... not too cold, not too snowy, not too oppressive. Pots of veggie soup, boots left out to dry, and burrowing under warm covers at the end of the day have been par for the course.Trying to get motivated to paint has been hard. Not sure what is happening there! Once started, I enjoy it. (For the most part... as long as the image is shaping up the way I want it too, ha! ) Ive been doing lots of other things biz wise but the meat and potatoes have been pushed to the side for the last couple of months. Beans and potatoes!! I'm a Vegetarian :) Time to get back to the core of my business!!

What do you do to motivate yourself? How do you work towards your goals? What keeps you on track? The eternal questions.Those and many more....

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Shaking off the Winter Doldrums

January is always a bit of a shock to the system. Once the glow of the holidays wears off and the New Year's Resolutions have  faded, we are left with winter! Always a hard time of year for me. This year I am fighting back. I am extricating  myself from the grips of too much comfort food, too many drinks,  too much Netflix, not enough fresh air and lack of motivation. How you ask?  

I make myself tiny "to do lists"! Each night in my iPhone notes, I write a couple of healthy things to accomplish the next day that are beyond my usual winter slothishness and I set an intention to make sure I do them the next day and voila..... I am getting stuff done. Even something as simple as  "Do a plank", "drink four glasses of water";  they all add up to feeling accomplished and even though they are baby steps they add up.

I am also keeping a mini Daily review/gratitude list in my iPhone notes that I add to every night. I go through my day and choose the three best things. Sometimes it is as simple as that wonderful feeling of falling into bed at the end of the day or speaking to a friend or the way the light looked spilling through a window! You will be more mindful of your day doing this, and will find yourself looking for the good. xo

Wednesday, January 13, 2016


New Year, new intentions! Hey how are you? It's been a while. Seems like I say that each time I post :)

I've purchased a domain name and once I've got myself organized, I hope to write much more regularly and have this blog front and centre at 
Easy to say.....we shall see how easy to fulfill!
Hope you are enjoying your January!

Friday, September 4, 2015

BOGO Sale!!

It's that time of year again! BOGO SALE!  
Buy one print or more from my shop and tell me in the "notes to seller", which print or prints you would like me to send to you  for free! Each print purchased gets one for free!!! The SALE ends at midnight on Sunday Sept 6th. Please share this post so everyone can have some fun shopping:) -CLICK HERE to SHOP!---> Artist: Shelagh Duffett