Back In the Studio

IMG_3108  I am so glad you stopped by! It’s been a while since I’ve been in the studio. I have missed painting. The Big Rabbit used to come out and paint with me in my studio every week, and honestly I dreaded going back in there without him. His canvas is still sitting in my studio  half painted. I stared at my studio door for about two months and finally walked in the room. I’ve not been in there by myself yet, Fox has been busy in there creating journals. I’ve needed and enjoyed his company. I cleaned up my space for my first day back. I so love a clean art space! I put paint on my palate and even bought a new brush or two. I’ve yet to put paint on a canvas, but I did journal and do a little watercolor. Journaling has been good for me to organize my creative thoughts. I am excited about where my art will go from here. I am so thankful for my sweet family. Their love for a creative life inspires me to dream big! It is so important to create everyday. It makes even the most ordinary of days extraordinary. Thank you to my sweet followers for your prayers and encouragement for me to be back in the studio. You have no idea how much it means to me! Your love notes and messages cause my heart to overflow.

“The Lord’s loving kindnesses indeed NEVER cease…” love love love Ruthie

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Be My Valentine!

IMG_3030Happy Valentines Day! This is by far my favorite holiday! It’s all about love! I love love! Yesterday, Towns called and thanked me for instilling a love for Valentines Day in our family! She was busy making valentines for her roommates and rice crispy hearts for teacher friends and cookies for her students! The twins were making valentines for MiMi all afternoon, Mary Cam was delivering flowers to girls in her youth group and Luke came home for lunch with me and MiMi. How fun is that? Making, creating, giving…thinking of others. What’s not

Art Journal: He is enough

Art Journal: He is enough

to love?

Valentines is not about sitting around waiting for the flower guy to arrive or the chocolate heart to mysteriously appear at your door. It’s about giving your heart to those around you. It’s about making a card or sending a note without expecting anything in return. It’s thinking of others. It’s putting someone’s heart before your own and reminding them that they are loved. Is that the coolest thing ever? I love it! Valentines day is not just February 14, it’s really every day. We need to love everyday…..say it out loud! Say it with a note or a card or better yet…in person! That’s my favorite thing! I really love it when it catches someone off guard and they are left

You are Loved!

You are Loved!

speechless! But I know they love it, because we were created in the image of God and He IS love. Not only is He love, but because He loves so much He sent His only son to die on the cross to save you from your sins so that you could live eternally with Him in Heaven. The greatest Valentine of all!!!! John 3:16

You are loved! Live like it! Share it! Show it! Give it! Wear something pink today and tell someone you love them. God is love. He is enough!                                                               I I Love you! Ruthie

 

The Big Rabbit

The Big Rabbit

The Big Rabbit

To the Big Rabbit,

I was in Mr. Frank’s garden today. I was a little nervous to go under then fence by myself. I forgot how fluffy my fur is sometimes and Big Rabbits are so good at helping little rabbits when they get stuck. I found the spot that we alway got through, and it was easy. The grass was worn and I could still see your paw prints from our last adventure in the garden. I was afraid to hop around by myself. I’ve never been in the garden alone, so I just snuggled down right by the fence where I felt safe. It was very quiet and a little scary in the dark of the morning, but I remembered you said that bunnies love the morning time. So I did try to love it, but I had tears on my whiskers and it made it hard to see. I could hear the birds waking up and singing a little. I remember you would try to sing with them. I miss that! My ears were really heavy, but with every sound I would try to lift them up to listen for all the little creatures that you introduced me to. They were all there singing, and chirping and croaking. Sweet familiar sounds that were more like love notes for me. And then it happened. Mr Sun peeked his head over the edge of the meadow and dried my tears and invited me into the garden. The higher the sun got, the better I could see all the trails you made for me and the forts we made to hide from Mr. Frank. I found carrots and radishes just like you showed me, and I quickly remembered how sweet the dew tasted dripping from the lettuce leaves. That was one of my favorite things you taught me.

Thank you for loving the Little Rabbit every day and for teaching me how to love all the little creatures in the garden. Thank you for  showing me how to find the very best carrots and give them away to everyone we hopped by. My adventures in the garden will be different, but I’m not afraid anymore. I know you are in the garden this morning with Jesus snuggled at His feet. Thank you for teaching about Jesus. I cant wait to meet Him face to face. Save me a spot in the grass next to you. I miss the Big Rabbit so much that sometimes I think I won’t be able to stand it. But I will see you again! and I can’t wait to be hopping around heaven with you and singing with angels. I love you with all my heart.                                                                                            The Little Rabbit

Recycled Valentine

I’m so glad you stopped by! It’s really cold today so I thought it would be a perfect day to make valentines again today. I promised no sewing this time, and I stayed true to that promise. Today I thought I would encourage you to use things you already have at home. All you need is an old magazine, scissors, glue, and a little imagination. Let’s get started.

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To begin this project, I got an old magazine, a pair of scissors, glue and an old piece of stationary that I wasn’t going to use. I decided to use the piece of stationary for the base of my card. You could easily make a card from construction paper, card stock paper, an old greeting card, or even a postcard. The idea is to use something you already have at home.

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I love this photograph. I took ten minutes and cut my favorite colors out of the magazine. I cut lots of greens, pinks, reds, and some black and white, I cut some text in order to create text on my card when I’m done. TIP: cut as much if not all your paper all at one time.  It saves a lot of time and makes it easier to create your design when it’s done ahead of time.

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I chose to use the color green to make the background of my valentine. I love pink and green together, so I’m thinking I will do pink hearts to go with my background. I also decided to frame my card. I chose a black and white border so not to take away from my design. Since I had already cut all my paper ahead of time, glueing my background took about 5 minutes. Now for my design.IMG_3019

I took all my pink colored papers and glued it down in the shape of a big heart. I used my text to say “Be Mine.” I could not stand it, I had to embellish with a permanent marker. It’s all I can do not to paint it as well. But I really wanted to show you how to create a fabulous valentine with very little tools.

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Okay, I couldn’t stand it. I pulled out a few stamps and permanent ink and stamped my design. I love it!!!! IMG_3021

Quick and easy! You may not have any stamps, but you could paint it, add glitter, what ever you have. The sky is the limit. Use your imagination. So fabulous!

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I made another one. Same process as the first one with a little paint. I made this one with a black background and it was so dark. I added a little white paint and I lightened it up, and I love it!!!

You have to admit this was really easy to do. I hope this inspires you to get an old magazine and a little glue and create sweet notes filled with love. I had so much fun making these and I will make more. I will definitely pull out paint next time. I miss paint! I love paint! Have fun with this and send me your pics! I’d love to see what you come up with! Have fun creating! love love love Ruthie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Heart Crafts

IMG_3008 I’m so glad you stopped by! Valentines is not far away, and if you follow my blog you know I LOVE valentines day! I LOVE love! I love celebrating love. I love crafting. So put those things together and you get super cute valentine decorations. I have also found some pretty fun ideas on pinterest . If you love valentines follow my valentine board on pinterest. I would love for you to follow me on instagram too. (ruthiecarlsonart) I will post some really fun valentine ideas starting tomorrow.

For today, I saw a version of these valentines on pinterest. I decided to make these and share the process with you. It was quick, easy and tons of fun.

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I started by cutting a pattern. I cut two hearts. One big and the other one just smaller so that it would fit inside the other. The size of the heart is really up to you. Mine were small, about the size of the palm of my hand.

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I used my pattern and cut hearts out of fabric scraps. I also cut a small rectangle to use as a tag in the middle of the smallest heart.

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Isn’t this so cute? I picked scraps of fabric and layered them until I was happy with my color choices. I really love the way the fabrics go together, so now I’m ready to stamp.

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I used permanent ink to stamp the word “LOVE” on my fabric tags. I really adore the way it turned out. Now it’s time to sew.

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Before I sew, I just wanted to say that you really could put any word on the tag. Maybe someone’s name or a term of endearment. You could put buttons on it or sequins. However you decide to embellish the heart, you would want to do it now.

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Sew the tag on first to the smallest heart with a quick straight stitch.

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How cute is that? Then sew the smaller heart right on top of the large heart using a straight stitch.

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Next, take a second large heart and with right sides together sew them together leaving a hole so that you can be sure to turn it right side out.

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Turn it right side out and stuff with batting, like a pillow. Then take a needle and thread and stitch by hand the hole.

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Do you love it? I love it! They are adorable. Truly quick and easy! I wondered what I would do with them now. I do love the process of creating more than anything so I really don’t need a “purpose” for things I make. That so makes me laugh. However, I was thinking of you and wondering what I would tell you to do with them. You could make more and put them in a precious bowl on your table. KK recommended making a few more and using them to create a banner. They could always be a tag on the top of a gift. And really, I think they are so fabulous that each one could stand alone and be the gift. Anyway, let me know what you decide to do with your hearts! This has been the most fun. I’ve loved sharing this idea with you. Check back with me, I’ve got tons of fun easy ideas that don’t involve sewing! I promise. Love love love Ruthie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I Love Love!

Mixed Media

Mixed Media

I am so excited to share this piece with you. When I was creating it, I wasn’t exactly sure what it would look like, but I knew exactly what I wanted it to make me feel. This piece wasn’t a commission but a gift. I love that because I had complete freedom to create without the confines of someone else’s imagination. I could paint and glue and design with all my heart.

I have the sweet privilege of leading a bible study on Tuesday afternoons, and I told a story yesterday that illustrates my feelings so well. In fourth grade, I found it very difficult to conform to the very strict rules and regulations of my classroom. I felt immense pressure to fit the mold of the “model student.” Then one random day, the teacher left us alone in the room, but not without giving us an assignment and explicit instructions on behavior while she was gone. I truly don’t know what came over me, but the minute she cleared the door, I escaped from my desk and ran wildly through the room, laughing uncontrollably and dumping desks causing books and pencils and papers to scatter everywhere. Can you even believe I did that? I will tell you that I did pay the consequences for my actions, as I should have. But my point is this, we desperately try to conform to the image of this world and constantly seek approval of those around us. I don’t know if you’ve figured it out yet, but needing the acceptance and approval of others is exhausting and leaves you wanting, and then you find yourself doing something ridiculous like dumping desks. I challenged myself and the ladies in my group to step outside “the box.” Dare to be different. Rather than loving God with part of your heart on sundays, wednesday nights, and tuesday bible study, love Him with all your heart all the time. Be wild! Love Him with complete abandonment, AND (sometimes very difficult for women) allow Him to fully love you back. He IS love. The God that created the universe wants to lavish you with His love. We LOVE love. We do! So let Him satisfy your soul. Only God can do that!  ”Oh Lord, Thy lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, Thy compassions never fail. They are new every morning, Great  is Thy faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23

I’m so glad you stopped by. Love love love Ruthie

Happy New Day!

This is the first thing you see when you come in my back door. Everybody comes to my back door. Come on in.

This is the first thing you see when you come in my back door. Everybody comes to my back door. Come on in.

Happy New Day! Come in and get warm! I wanted to share a few photos from my home with you. I put this boxwood wreath on an old cabinet door that I’ve had for years. I am eventually going to make it a head board, but today it sits at my back door welcoming friends. I am going to leave it year round, and even enjoy it as it turns brown.

Flowers in a galvanized bucket from Mary Cam's wedding. They welcomed friends on a bench by my back door during the holidays.

Flowers in a galvanized bucket from Mary Cam’s wedding. They welcomed friends on a bench by my back door during the holidays.

For my first post of the new year, I thought about saying the expected “happy new year,” but I think that’s so overwhelming. I don’t love thinking about my life in terms of years. I’m a “live in the moment” kind of girl. I love thinking about my life in the every day.

Just for the holidays, I filled my lanterns with flowers from Mary Cam's wedding. Sweet reminders of her precious wedding.

Just for the holidays, I filled my lanterns with flowers from Mary Cam’s wedding. Sweet reminders of her precious wedding.

I am not saying that setting goals for the new year is not important or having a savings account for a future purchase is not a fabulous idea. I just believe when you focus so hard on “the year,” it’s easy to miss the joy of the every day!

I love this boxwood wreath. I  hung it for Christmas above my kitchen sink and it will stay forever, even when it turns brown. I absolutely love it!

I love this boxwood wreath. I hung it for Christmas above my kitchen sink and it will stay forever, even when it turns brown. I absolutely love it!

I absolutely love waking up each morning wondering what will fill each moment of the day.  I have routine things I do everyday like office hours, laundry, cleaning house, preparing meals, and so forth, but it’s the magical moments in between that I love love love.

This still sits in the middle of my island. I think I will keep it year round. I love the color and of course the sparkle and shine.

This still sits in the middle of my island. I think I will keep it year round. I love the color and of course the sparkle and shine.

It is the unexpected phone call from a friend, or a conversation with the girl that bagged my groceries that I think is so much fun. Sometimes it’s a 75% off sale at my favorite store or finding $10 in my pocket and picking up lunch. It can be as simple as sending hugs and kisses to my children in a text or actually writing a note of an encouragement to someone that needs a pick me up.

This was my garland on my stairs. I love twinkle lights more than anything. I did throw this away, but I'm considering putting lights back up!

This was my garland on my stairs. I love twinkle lights more than anything. I did throw this away, but I’m considering putting lights back up!

I love a clean house, but sometimes opening your home on the spur of the moment is a cool thing. Open your home, share your dinner, listen more, laugh out loud. Those are the every day moments that somehow pass us by if we aren’t looking.

This is one of my favorite wreaths. It was a gift. It sits year round on a gorgeous wooden tray by my front door. It's about 6x6 in size. Love love

This is one of my favorite wreaths. It was a gift. It sits year round on a gorgeous wooden tray by my front door. It’s about 6×6 in size. Love love

So I say “Happy New Day! Every Day!” Enjoy your day. Keep your eyes wide open to see the precious love notes that God so graciously puts in your path all day every day.

This is a magnolia wreath above my mantle. I've had it two years and I love it more every day. The color is yummy.

This is a magnolia wreath above my mantle. I’ve had it two years and I love it more every day. The color is yummy.

This is the day that the Lord has made! Let us rejoice and be glad in it!                                 Enjoy your day. Expect magical moments.

My tree was dreamy with lights and color. I am sad it is no longer in my den! I loved it!

My tree was dreamy with lights and color. I am sad it is no longer in my den! I loved it!

Thank you so much for stopping by! I have missed y’all! I hope you enjoyed being in my home as much as I enjoyed having you! love love love Ruthie

 

 

 

 

Stocking Stuffers (handmade, of course!)

IMG_2791 I am so glad you stopped by! I am busy stuffing stockings this week. I love stuffing stockings! I love trying to come up with little bitty fabulous surprises. I remember loving my stocking when I was little! My mom made my stocking and always put fun little things in it. I think it’s the idea of small treats. Bottom line, I love a stocking. I think I love it even more as a mama. I adore watching my children reach in their stocking and pulling out each little surprise one by one. I fill the stocking with a lot of old familiar favorites like an I tunes card or a starbucks card. But it thrills me to find the unexpected and fill it to the rim. I can’t tell you anymore things because it’s not Christmas yet, but take my word for it, it’s filled with lots of cool things. I have to tell you, one year I was running out of time and I enlisted my husband’s help. I asked him to do the boy’s stockings and I woud do the girls. I will never do that again! Sweet thing, he is the most amazing man ever, but stuffing stockings is not his gift. He thought I was crazy to “redo” the boys stockings, but Christmas morning, when he saw the boys loving all the little surprises, he admitted there is an art to filling a stocking, and I did good. Anyway, you get the idea. I love a stocking. This year I made fabulous rings for the girls stockings. However, it was so easy and so fun, I had to show them and let them make them with me. We had a ball with these. I thought you might like a fun idea to make with your girls this year. This is what we did!

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I found these little wood rounds at my local craft store. The wood rounds are everywhere. People are using them for everything. Mine came in a package of ten or so and they were ready to go. Ok, can you cut up a branch from your yard for free? I guess you could. I’ve not done that yet, but I don’t see why not. If you do that, let me know how it turns out!

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I then took blue painters tape and taped off the sides of each round. This is really important, because when you pour the glaze it will not stick to the sides of the round. If it gets on the side it can be sanded off. The tape also keeps you from getting paint on the sides. The main thing is that the tape kind of makes a stand for each round and once you pour the glaze it runs down the tape rather than causing the round to stick directly to the surface you’re working on.

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This is the fun part! Paint! Paint! Paint! I used acrylic paint. Ok, there are lots of fun things you could do at this point. If you wanted to put text on it , this would be the time to do that. KK painted a tiny heart in the center of hers. In other words, be creative. Paint anything you like. You could even put a small photo on it if you wanted too. Go for it.

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I’m kind of simple, I just painted all one color. I love it! I will say, I did swirl a little white on the edges so it wasn’t completely one flat color.

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I bought an acrylic glaze and mixed it up (in a well ventilated area) according to the directions. I found this at my local craft store. I mixed with a popsicle stick and poured slowly onto each round. Once I poured on to the round, I gently spread it with the stick. Now, you could use a polyurethane or spray glaze to seal the round, but I thought a thick acrylic coat would be more professional. But I’m all about using what you have.

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This is the hard part. Once it’s poured  you have to wait for it to dry….overnight! But let me say, It’s worth the wait! These are awesome! One really great tip, the stand you make out of tape needs to be pretty even, otherwise the acrylic will run off the ring completely. It’s really disappointing to come back to get your ring the next day only to find it has no plastic coating on top. So get the stand right! It makes a difference.

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I found ring pieces at my local craft store. They come like 10 to a package. They run about $3. I really like the wider band. Then attach the round to the flat part of the ring base with hot glue. I recommend using E6000, its a really strong glue.

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Do you love this ring or what? I Love love love it! It was fun and easy and anyone can do it! The best part? It is the best stocking stuffer ever! Definitely make one and shoot me a pic. I’d love to see what you create! Have fun! And Merry Christmas! love love love Ruthie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I Have News!

 

Oh Come Let Us Adore Him Mixed Media

Oh Come Let Us Adore Him
Mixed Media

I am so glad you stopped by! Be honest…when you saw the title of my blog you could hardly wait to open it and see what the “big news” was. I know! When my children come home from school or my husband gets home from work, we always talk about their day while we are piddling in the kitchen or fixing dinner or whatever. However, if they come through the door and say, “I have news!” we stop what we are doing and give them our undivided attention with great anticipation. I would even add to that, if they’re coming through the back door excited about “news,” it’s usually great news. Rarely is anyone excited to announce a poor test grade or a speeding ticket. I love when my family comes home with news, because it usually brings big smiles and great conversation, two of my favorite things.

I made an envelope by cutting brown card stock and stiching it up the sides. I stamped my blog on the front, and made tags with paint cards.

I made an envelope by cutting brown card stock and stiching it up the sides. I stamped my blog on the front, and made tags with paint cards.

I created this piece of art this Christmas thinking about the greatest news ever spoken. You have probably heard it a million times. This time listen with your heart.  ”And in the same region there were some shepherds staying out in the fields, and keeping watch over their flock by night.   And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened.  And the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for today I bring you good news of a great joy which shall be for all the people’  for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.’ ” Luke 2:8-11

If you were sitting with me at my kitchen table right now, I would love to talk about that very night. I would love to imagine what it must have

I tied it all up with brown packaging paper, jute, and bakers twine. Finally ready to ship.

I tied it all up with brown packaging paper, jute, and bakers twine. Finally ready to ship.

been like to be in that exact field and to be completely surrounded by God’s glory, and to be the one chosen to hear the “great news.” What a night!  I’ve got news! Today is not a lot different than that night. I’m obviously not  shepherd, but I am surrounded by God’s glory everyday. His news is for all people. It is for anyone who believes that He is the Son of God who was born that day in Bethlehem in order to save us from our sins. He is the Savior. He is your Savior. Open your heart to hear His voice.                        Love love love Ruthie

The Lord is my Shepherd

IMG_2658   I am so glad you stopped by. Today I am delivering these sheep to a new client. I am excited to meet her and humbled that she would purchase my art for her own. As I created  these sheep so  close to Christmas, I truly contemplated with what text I would finish the piece. I chose “Oh Holy Night.” It perfectly describes the very first Christmas, the night Christ was born. The most amazing gift this world will ever know.

I chose to string lights across the top as a reminder that Jesus is the light of the world. I love that! No matter the time of day or the situation at hand, He lights our way and leads us home.

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The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters.

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He restores my soul. He guides me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.

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Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For Thou are with me. Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me. Thou dost prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. Thou hast anointed my head with oil. My cup overflows.

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Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Psalm 23

It was a Holy Night. He is the greatest gift. Merry Christmas. love love love Ruthie