Brave Girls Club

Brave Girls Club



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Friday, February 15, 2013


I had fun making valentines for my guys this year.  This is going to be a short post but I just had to show you all what I made because I love how they turned out.  For the boys and my husband I made treat jars out of mason jars and filled them with their favorite candy.
I wrapped each one in that upholstery binding (that I just recently discovered), attached a felt heart with a burlap heart on top of that and added an initial charm with black ribbon wrapped around the jar.  Actually, they look way better in person.  Ben and Gabe have their initials but I couldn't find the "k" for Ken so he had to have an "a" for Aubert.  I'm sure I used the "k" for Kelly at some time or another! 

I looked on Pinterest to find cool ideas to make something special for Ken.  I found these:
1st Pin  2nd Pin
I took the idea and made it my own.  I LOVE how it turned out.

Isn't that the cutest idea?  I think it looks better in person.  I need to work on my photography skills!!  Lol! 

I haven't posted about Nana passing.  That will have to wait for another day.  I don't want to rush it. I want to write something nice and add beautiful pictures.  It has been more difficult for me lately because I am missing her so much.  Anyway, she loved holidays and I think she would have been pround of the beautiful things that I made!!

Monday, January 21, 2013

long day

I sat at my Nana's bedside all day today.  Up until a few weeks ago she has been living on her own.  Nana is 96 and quite a remarkable woman.  We have always been very close and I can even remember her taking care of me when I was sick.  In more recent years our relationship has changed more to being good friends.  We have confided in each other and helped each other work things out by listening and offering advice.  I love that it went both ways and I could always count on her to keep my secrets as well as her sharing her own secrets with me.  A few weeks ago she fell out of bed and wasn't really hurt but it became obvious that she needed to have people around to help her.  Nana moved into the nursing home and wasn't happy about it but she was doing her best to adjust and not complain.  During her short stay there she caught the flu and as you know for a person of her advanced age that can be quite complicated.  She has been in the hospital for over a week now.  Today her doctor came to say she was over the flu but in the meantime she has become very weak and hasn't been eating.  This morning she had a feeding tube (I don't remember the medical term) surgically put in and is now getting her food delivered to her without trouble.  I did't want her to wake up and to be frightened so I sat there next to her bed.  She only woke up for a short amount of time and talked very little so I just sat next to her and read all day.  I can't believe how tired I was when I got home!  I didn't do anything but sit and read.  I just hope that this nourishment she is now going to have will help her feel better and she'll have a more peaceful time until she is ready to go.  I know 96 is a long time to live and I should be grateful for the time I've had with her but I'm having trouble imagining my life without my friend. 

Monday, August 6, 2012

Where has the time gone???

I wanted to blog regularly and posted about it on January 1st!  I just went to my blog knowing that it has been a long time since I was there but I had no idea that it has been this long!  It is now August and that hopeful January post was the last one!!  The more upsetting thing is that there were two comments about me winning a prize and a place in a workshop!  OMG!  I could just kick myself!  See!!!!  I should have been blogging and "connecting" like I had planned too.  Okay, lesson learned.  Time to move on.......

I have been working on my art a lot and I am totally going to start sharing.  FOR REAL this time! 
This is a picture of my husband, Ken and my girl, Carly.  We were in Geneva, IL at a festival.  The window display had some dogs in there and Carly jumped up on the window to see them and we tried like heck to get her to do it again because it was so funny.  She wouldn't do it because of course she is a smart girl and already knew they weren't real!!  Lol!  Oh well.......

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Welcome 2012 - A year of possibilities...

I'm so excited about this new year.  I don't usually get so excited but I feel like this is going to be a good year for me.  I'm involved in a bunch of wonderful online art groups and I keep meeting so many amazing artists and friends.  One of the things that I have been working on is finding a word that will be mine for the whole year.  A word to think about and art journal with.  It is really hard to pick one word to use for the entire year!  I was having trouble narrowing it down.  I decided that my word will be - Connect.  I want to work on connecting with friends, family, other artists and even my artwork.  This word will probably come to mean more to me over the year and it will be really interesting to see where it takes me.  This idea came to me from Effy of Wild Precious.  Effy is holding a year long workshop called Book of Days 2012.  It is totally free!  She is so generous!  You can donate to her workshop but it is not required.

I am also taking a year long course on Willowing run by Tam LaPorte.  The course is called Life Book 2012.
Check it out because it is awesome!  Tam is teaching a class once a month for the whole year as well as one or two guest teachers teaching a separate class each moth.  It is too exciting!!

Last night I sat down with my art journal while Dick Clark's Rockin' New Year's Eve was on.  I was having trouble picking my word so I just started painting, drawing, doodling and then finally writing different words on my page.  I stopped to fold some laundry and the word 'CONNECT' popped in my head and I ran downstairs to write it down.  I had to do it right away because things slip out of my not so steal trap very easily!  It is funny how things just come to you when you let them simmer for awhile.  Here is the page I was working on:

Lastly, I came across 52 PlayDATES by Jan Fox Design's and signed up to be a part of that.  When you join you add your name and blog and then you can go back to visit other artist's blogs and they can also visit yours.  I am 119 on the list but maybe someone will start at at the end and find me???  It doesn't matter because I decided to finally post on my blog today just because of 52 PlayDATES!  That is part of my resolution to Connect!!  This new year is going to be wonderful!  Happy New Year to everyone - much love and happiness to all of you!

I cannot end my post without a picture of my sweet girl!  Also, a picture of a visitor from today.  Junior is our neighbor and loves to eat Carly's treats!  Both cuties!!! 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Black & White Portrait

Yesterday I was working on the Dreamy Ladies Class by Ady.  I skipped the black and white portrait to go right to the girl with purple afro that I showed you earlier.  I guess I was excited about the colors and the afro looked like fun too!  I'm really glad that I went back and did the black and white.  It is so cool how you can really add dimension with just a black water soluable crayon and white paint. 
I meant to take a picture of the one I drew before I started the process of painting and shading.  I don't think my original was cross eyed and her lips were bigger but I still like how she turned out.  It was so much fun to work on her and you really don't need much to do a pretty portrait!  This is a great way to sit and practice portraits and not have to get all your supplies out.  Ady is a wonderful teacher.  If you are interested in learning faces and drawing then you really should look into her Ning group. 

On another subject,
I love birds!  I'm sure a lot of you know that already.  I have a hummingbird feeder hanging out on my deck and look forward to seeing them every year.  They only visit for a short while in the late summer/fall.  They are very hard to photograph too!  Every time I try, I miss him!!  Yesterday I finally got a good shot except I was standing in the kitchen and the blinds were in the way!!!  You can still see him pretty good ~
Isn't that kind of cool?  I'm going to keep trying!  While I was sketching and chasing hummingbirds this is what my little cutie patootie was doing ~

I kept jumping over her and she didn't even open an eye.  She is the sweetest thing ever!!!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Dreamy Ladies

I really wanted to share this painting that I started working on this morning.  It is from a class called Dreamy Ladies in the group: Doll Dreams
"Ady" Adriana Almanza, is an amazing teacher and her class is cut down in easy to understand directions that even I could follow!!  Just take a look at what I made just from watching her in my pjs, and then painting from her instructions in one morning!!
I still have work do do on her but I was feeling so excited about how pretty she looks and wanted to share her with all of you! :)

The Luggage Project

I joined a group called LaFioReVida run by artist Brenda  Figueroa. She is an amazing, lovely woman who loves to share her passion for art and is always there to help.  The class I am taking with her is called The Luggage Project.  You have to see her work - it is fun, whimsical and just beautiful!!  Here is the link to her class if you want to check it out for yourself: The Luggage Project
In this class we take an old suitcase from a thrift store, Goodwill or wherever you can find one and alter it into a cute, colorful piece of art!  Mine is not finished yet but here is a picture of it ~
  Isn't that adorable??  Brenda goes thru instructions on how you can do the inside, so that is the next part for me.  I have been collecting cases of different sizes and shapes that I am going to work on when this little cutie is done.  I just love it!  I am so glad that I found Brenda's group.  She is an awesome teacher and becoming a fast friend too! 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Nana's 95th Birthday!

I have the best Nana in the world!  She has always been such a wonderful and loving grandmother. Her actual birthday was on Monday, August 22nd.  Can you imagine being 95 years old?  Think of all the changes you would have seen and gone thru.  It is just mind boggling to me. I asked her what she thought the most impressive thing during her lifetime and she said it has been computers.  When I was little, my brother and I would spend weekends with her and she always had fun things for us to do.  When Rick and I would play games with each other she would pull wrapped up prizes out of a special drawer!  Can you imagine a drawer of wrapped presents to pick from when you are a small child?!?  Oh my gosh!  We even got presents from that drawer just for asking!!  She would also let us have mac and cheese for lunch and taught us how to dribble a basketball under our legs and do tricks!  Nana retired from Sears where she made custom drapes for people's houses.  While she was sewing she would let me play with her scraps of fabric and make clothes for my dolls and Barbies.  Nana taught me all kinds of things that I still use today. I think she really sparked my creative spirit!!  She is a wonderful woman and I enjoy every minute of our time together!  I wanted to share a couple of pictures from her birthday party on Sunday.
Nana with my boys - Gabe (left) & Ben (right)

Nana telling me a story

Dad giving his mother a birthday kiss

Nana and her sister Edna

Nana was so happy when we were singing to her

She didn't need any help blowing out her candles!

Presents of course! 

This was at the end of the night so not everyone was still there but as you can see we were all still happy to be at Nana's 95th Birthday Party!!!!
Love you, Nana!  I am looking forward to next year's 96th birthday bash!!

Monday, July 25, 2011

La La La! Workshop

I absolutely LOVE Suzi Blu!  I take a lot of her classes online.  The class I'm taking right now is called La La La!  We are making little pictures of cute little dolls and animals.  The first one is a cute little pink bunny.  I started this one last night and just finished it this morning.  It was so much fun because I got to use beeswax for the first time!  First let me show it to you and then I'll explain it a bit better:
Isn't that soooo cute???  She teaches you how to shade the bunny with colored pencil. I felt like I really learned something wonderful and I will never color the same way again!  When the bunny is just right you then cut her out of the paper.  I took a 4" X 4" canvas and water colored the background, stamped some script, glued the bunny, some hearts and a flower with matte medium.  Then I added some marks and a bit of paint here and there to finish it up and added some words.  Suzi then shows you how to add beeswax to the whole thing and distress it with oil paint.  It was a quick project because it is so small but sooooo adorable and so much fun!  I can't wait to make more of these little cuties!  In the lessons coming up we are working on cute little girls and a boy too.  They are so sweet!  I can't wait to show you what else I make from the rest of Suzi's class.  If you want to take the class or to see her other classes I will leave the link for you HERE

Today is a beautiful day.  Finally it is not scorching hot and I am actually sitting on my deck with the laptop.  My little brother, Alex, bought the Topsy Turvy for me.  You know, that thing that lets you grow the tomato plant upside down?  I really wanted it and my Mom saw it while shopping with him so he bought it for me!  Isn't he the sweetest??  Everyone was making fun of me and acting like I was a big nerd but take a look at it!

It is HUGE!  When the sun is bright the branches reach all the way up like it is really reaching out.  It is kind of cool to watch this guy grow.  I can't wait for the tomatoes to ripen so we can put them on hamburgers and salads!!  Thanks, Alex!  Next year I might get another one and try a strawberry plant.  That would really be wonderful!! 

While I've been sitting here a little visitor came to sit by me and say hello.  How lucky that I had my camera sitting here!  Isn't he cute?

I didn't add the third picture of him because he left me a surprise!  Ha!  I didn't think that I needed to share that!! Have a great day and enjoy the fresh air!

Friday, July 22, 2011

My baby sister is amazing!!

My little sister is so smart, so talented and so driven!  She will be 26 in about a week and has already had such an amazing career and has met so many really cool people.  She worked for Obama while he was campaigning for president.  Of course he got the job - my little sister helped!!  While her former employer went off to Washington she stayed home and worked with Mayor Daley until he retired.  She was all over the city with the Mayor - right by his side.  She has traveled, met amazing and famous people - it is just the beginning!!  Imagine what she will be able to tell her grandchildren one day!  I am so proud of Nikki!  It is a little scary when you lose your job in this economy but she has already snagged her next adventure!  She is going to be in public relations for Blue Cross Blue Shield in Chicago.  I hope they know how lucky they are to have her!!
Of course I felt the need to show her how proud I was so I made a cute card for her.  She loves handmade cards and I knew she appreciate it.  I look this class by Christy Tomlinson called 'The She Art Workshop'.  Christy is a wonderful teacher and her She Art girls are adorable!!  Here is the link if you are interested in the class: She Art Workshop
I made this card for Nik from the things I learned in Christy's workshop.  Check it out!
She is cute, isn't she?!?  By the way, I know I use a lot of explanation points but it is totally how I'm talking to you in my head!!  Lol!  I even painted the envelope to match the card.  It was so much fun to make.  I think I'm going to paint all the envelopes I send out from now on!  Do you think the electric company will mind?!? 
Morgan (my niece), Nikki (my sister) & me

Thursday, July 21, 2011

So Hot !! What is a girl to do?!?

Living in Chicago this past week has been so miserable!!  It looks like most of the country has been excessively hot this past week.  Last night I stepped outside and I couldn't believe the heat.  I don't think I have ever felt heat like this here.  It was 90 degrees at 10 pm!!  When it is this hot out the best thing to do is to find a project in the air conditioning.  I started rearranging my art room.  I wish I would have taken a picture before I started it so that I could show you a before and after but I didn't even think of it.  When I get an idea I usually jump in and should probably stop and give it more thought.  I was even feeling a bit overwhelmed last night and started wondering what I got myself into!!  Lol!  When it is all done I will take some pictures to share. 

A lot has been going on over here at the Aubert house.  My youngest son, Gabe, was in a serious car accident on Friday.  It was so scary and I don't really want to relive it but I will tell you that everyone is okay.  One of his friends had to go to the hospital for a ton of stitches on his head but will be okay.  Gabe's car is totaled but all in all it could have been much worse and I am so thankful that the boys are okay.  It really was scary and I'm just so thankful......

Ben, my oldest, started a real job at a factory this week.  He will be working full-time during the day and then he also starts college at the end of August.  He will take all of his classes in the evenings and I think he has one on Saturday too.  I hope he can handle all of this work!  It is a lot for a person but he is strong and very motivated. 

I haven't blogged in a long time and I do have a lot to talk about.  I thought that today I'd do a short catch up and I am going to try to get on here everyday so that I can keep up.  So for today the picture I will share is of Ben on his first day at his new grown up job.  Stay cool everyone and drink lots of water!!! :)
 Oh my gosh!  I am a bad sister!  I should also mention that today is my baby brother's birthday!!  Alex is 22 today.  He is just back from Afghanistan and is going back to college in the fall.  Happy Birthday, Alex!!!  Love you!
me, Rick, Alex, Nikki (my younger brothers and sister)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Clay over Cloth Doll

I joined a group called Cloth and Clay Dolls - it is a ning site for people who enjoy making dolls.  The woman who runs the group you might know as Gritty Jane.  Her real name is Jane DesRosier.
She is amazing and so talented.  The group costs just $10 a year so I decided to give it a try.  There are some tutorials listed within the group and one was for the Gritty Jane doll.  Here is a picture of the original one that she makes in the tutorial.
First you sew the entire doll using muslin and then stuff her with polyester stuffing. When the doll is nice and fully stuffed you then put clay over the body and head.  The next step is sculpting the head and chest with clay.  After everything is sculpted to your liking you start painting her - the cloth and clay parts.  The last step is to make a cute little skirt for her.  It was so much fun!  Jane's videos are so easy to understand and she makes it look so easy.  This project looked too complicated for me but when I watched the tutorials I decided that I had to give it a try.  Here is my gritty jane doll ~
I realize I have a lot of practicing to do but I am so proud of her!  I just love her so much!!  Thank you to Jane for the wonderful class and the inspiration!!  I am excited to start my next clay over cloth doll!!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

I'm a Grandma!!

I'm a Grandma!  ~only for a couple of days, thank goodness!!  My oldest son, Ben, is taking Child Development in school.  Things are different nowadays and they don't have eggs to protect - they actually have these very real-like babies to keep for 3 days/ 2 nights.  I was a bit anxious when I had to sign a form taking responsibility for a $500 doll!!  Lol!  It was also mentioned that pets might want to bite it when it cries and that you must use a car seat when driving it around.  I couldn't wait to see this baby.  Yesterday, Ben came home from school and he called for me.  When I came into the living room I had a moment of panic!  Really!  Even though I knew it was coming he had it in it's car seat on the couch and for a moment it felt real!  Here is what I saw:
The baby is so much fun!  It is so cute to see my 6'4" son holding this baby, feeding her bottles and changing her diapers.  I went into his room last night about 3 am and he was sitting up in bed changing her diapers.  The baby doesn't shut off and everything is tracked - including if they are holding the neck properly.  Carly wasn't sure about it when she started crying the first time but she seems used to it already too.  Here are some pictures of our newest family member, Lupita.  That was Ben's choice of names by the way.  :)

Ben is going to be a good Dad!  Someday.... not soon..... when we are both much, much older!!!! :)