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Art Journaling

Registration opens THIS SATURDAY...


Registration opens THIS SATURDAY...

This Saturday, April 1st the SIGN UPS will go LIVE for our 2018 Art & Faith Creative Retreat in Paris & Bruges!

Thank you to everyone who is excited about joining us on this adventure of Art & Faith through France & Belgium!  I am humbled by your words and your willingness to spend your time with us!  It is just such an honor to do these Creative Reteats for YOU and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.  That you allow me to continue my passion of sharing God's CREATION and CREATIVITY all around the world with all of you is such a blessing! 

Here's a few more photos from past trips to get you excited:

One of the beautiful Cafe's in the Saint Germain area of favorite part of the city.

yup, that's my family... quite a few years ago in front of Notre Dame. (the girls probably don't want me to post this :)

One of the prettiest little streets in the Latin Quarter.

A great angle of the Sacre Coeur.

And believe it or not, this little cutie has grown up and is soon becoming my business partner! She really has a heart for women and all that these retreats are about, so she is going to be heading off to college soon and is praying about joining me in this business/adventure... and I could sure use the help!  We are praying big prayers over where the Lord wants us to go and what He is calling us to do out in this big, big world.

Here's a more recent photo of us at the last Art & Faith Creative Retreat this past September in Bellagio, Italy...

Speaking of the WORLD...

We WILL be going other places and I wanted to give you a little highlight of some of the future Art & Faith Creative Retreats in the next year...

This year I have the following Art & Faith Creative Retreat in Italy:

This one is SOLD OUT for the weeklong retreat, BUT you can join the classes if you are local to the Bellagio, Italy area!  I will be posting pictures of the classes from Jeanne Oliver, Stephanie Ackerman and myself in a few weeks and then they will be on the SIGN UP page to sign up for the day classes.  I'll post more information on that after Spring Break is over.

We are doing another Art & Faith Creative Retreat this year... but somewhere TOTALLY NEW!!  

I am in the process of organizing a retreat this year that will be in... California!  Yes, it will be in my area and I am exited to share more very soon!  I know so many people who have asked me to do these retreats here in the U.S. and so I have listened and am excited to have some locations coming up in the USA!  This first one will be on the West Coast and I have asked Stephane Ackerman to join me on this "mini" Art & Faith Creative Retreat the weekend of October 19 - 22, 2017!  I will have more details and SIGN UPS the middle of April.  But maybe some of the photos below will give you a few clues to the location in California...

Looking ahead to NEXT YEAR...

For 2018 there is of course the Paris & Bruges trip that is going LIVE this Saturday for Sign UPS... (don't miss out!!)

I am also doing another Art & Faith Creative Retreat in Bellagio, Italy for 2018!  I don't have the exact dates yet or the teachers, but most likely it will be in Mid to late June.  This is where I started my retreats and where I truly feel the Lord called me to, so I hope you will prayerfully consider joining us in the beautiful Lake Como region of Italy.  SIGN UPS and details for this retreat will be COMING SOON! 

If you want to be on the INTEREST LIST for this retreat or any other one, just leave your information on the CONTACT PAGE at the top of this website.

We have so many ideas for future retreats and we are just excited to see where the Lord leads us!  Thank you AGAIN for joining us on this journey.  We pray the Lord will use these retreats to draw you closer to Him and if He puts it on your heart to join us, I know He will make a way for you to come!

Have a blessed day and we hope to meet you some day at one of these (or other) retreats.




Creative Retreat Update...


Creative Retreat Update...

Hi ladies!

I wanted to do a blog post to update everyone on this years Creative Retreats.  I've made some big changes to the classes and retreat in June and thought I'd share what we are doing this summer with all of you!  

These are all changes that we have prayerfully considered and everyone feels a total peace about going forward.  I've talked with everyone involved and we are so excited to share what we are offering and I hope you will be too!

As most of you know, last year was my first Art & Faith Creative Retreat. I've hosted many Creative Retreats in Italy (and France) but this last June was my first where  we said "Art & Faith Collided"...  It was such an AWE INSPIRING week that it's hard to even explain how great it was!  I remember during that week telling some of the ladies "This is all I want to do from now on..."


To have a week that like minded women can come together and have a safe place to just talk and share about their lives and feel connected... and to feel pampered in one of the most beautiful places in Italy. It's incredible, and I want that for EVERYONE!  I want my Creative Retreats to be more then just a week in a beautiful place,  making beautiful things.  I want you to be changed.  I want everyone to grow and to learn, I want you to have your hearts filled up, I want you to see that you just made lifelong friends with the other ladies in this amazing location... and most of all, I want you to feel SO BLESSED.

So going forward this year I really felt the Lord putting in on my heart to bring this to the June Creative Retreat.  I know June was supposed to be just a "Planner Girl" week...  and that would have been fine.  But I feel like after last years Art & Faith retreat I should have kept with what I said and felt in my heart.  

So I am.

Sometimes you just have to listen to that small voice nudging you... (well you should probably always listen... hahaha)

With that being said... Now for the week of June 25 - July 2nd I am SO excited to tell you about the classes that Cori Spieker (of The Reset Girl) is teaching!  You can click on the SIGN UP button at the top of the website and click on TEACHERS & CLASSES to see an in depth description, but I wanted to give you some highlights here...

As you know if you follow Cori, she is a believer and has had a BIG "RESET" in her life and it's a big part of her business.  I wanted her to really share that with the ladies coming and help all of us with evaluating our lives and where we are.  That's ALWAYS a good thing!  So I am THRILLED that she is bringing this part of her to her classes and sharing it with us during our week together. Here's just a sample of 2 of the 3 classes she will be teaching:

Planning with Purpose: Are you ready to Reset Your Life? This amazing workshop is your first step towards your incredible transformation. First, you will learn what it means to build a foundation for resetting your life by first learning how to build a healthy relationship with yourself, learn how to truly understand yourself, and begin to show yourself love and kindness. Then, you will explore how to encourage yourself through setting strong goals. You will end the class with building a customized planner to help achieve your complete life reset.

The Faithful Planner Girl Workshop: Are you ready to take a walk deeper in your Christian faith? Take this faith-building course and learn to set up a custom planner for bible study, journaling, faith & vision building, affirmations, and note taking. You will create dividers and tabs TRG style. Inspiration will be provided to you for building a planner and developing a vision for your spiritual walk. 

Cori will share examples of bible journaling in a planner for those who don’t wish to use the bible for their art as well as numerous ways to use the scripture cards provided. Be encouraged to journal, create, and be all you can be, while listening to worship music, enjoying refreshments, and being uplifted.  Cori will share some of her testimony and the many stumbles on her own walk along with the many triumphs. Leave this class with a deeper understanding of your personal faith journey as well as a creative way to document your individual faith. 

Don't these sound like AMAZING classes to be a part of?!  I will also be teaching and sharing with you my life story and how I started this DREAM JOB and also how I got into Bible Journaling a couple years ago.  Throughout the week we will have time for getting deeper into the word through devotional time and bible journaling.  I will also be teaching a Travel Journal class at the beginning of the week that you will be able to keep your thoughts in throughout our time together, as well as your travel ephemera and photos.  And for those interested in watercolor art, there are two wonderful local teachers that teach painting classes and I would love to offer a class in watercolor as well if enough students are interested~


Sounds exciting, right?

I hope you will consider joining us for this week.  Oh... another BIG change is the PRICE for the weeklong event!  I've lowered the price for this week since it will be just Cori and myself teaching and accommodations are 3 to an apartment now.  (If you want private accommodations or 2 to a room, that is still available... just email me for pricing on that)  I just know with past experience that the ladies have had such a great time and the apartments are plenty big enough for 3 ladies so why not offer a better price break for that.  My heart has always been for the people who are feeling lead to come, to be able to come!  My pray is ALWAYS that the Lord would bring those who need to be there.  Even when I didn't have the space for anyone else and was "sold out" I knew that if there was someone who needed to be there, there would be room for them.  And there always is!  That's what's so awesome when you give it to the Lord and ask Him to show you what He wants things to look like.  Then you know for sure you are doing what is right and you are right where you need to be.

Well, I know it's a lot to "change up"  but I know it's the right decision and the direction I feel the Lord was leading me.  I hope you will consider joining Cori and I for this week filled with lots of FUN and PURPOSE. 


Feel free to email me if you have any questions or need help planning your trip with us!

Have a GREAT day everyone, and I can't WAIT to meet you... in ITALY this summer!

Hugs to all,




Art Journal with Faber-Castell

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Art Journal with Faber-Castell

Over the weekend I had a chance to work in my art journal and I wanted to share what I created with you because it was SO fun.  I felt like I was playing like a kid.  Actually I laid out a big tablecloth on my kitchen island and Isabella and I just played all afternoon with paint and stencils and markers and gelato... (she's a bit crazy for gelato's like me :)

I had collaged these vintage papers and sayings in my art journal a while ago and was just waiting to be INSPIRED to create something over them.  And sure enough... that happened last weekend!  

Lately I have been noticing all the wonderful products by Faber-Castell.  At the beginning of the month when I was at CHA their booth was BUZZING with people checking out all their wonderful products.  I use their products in my Journaling Bible art and have started really liking their Gelato's.  So I went onto Amazon last week and got a little crazy... I bought some more Gelatos, some of their Whipped Spackle and some of their Pitt pens in different colors and thicknesses.  


So I decided to use ONLY Faber-Castell products for all my color on this art journal page.

I wish I would have taken step-by-step photos of the process so I could have done a tutorial for you guys. Next time... So this it what it looked like after I painted lightly over the vintage papers with gesso and then a white acrylic paint.  I didn't want to cover the papers so it was just randomly painted and then I usually have a paper towel or something I can wipe any excess paint off.  Then I took the Faber-Castell Whipped Spackle and my gold toned Gelato and cut of a little (not even a full slice from the gelato) and blended the two things together to get this raised texture.  Then with a texture spatula I put a dotted art paper I had down on the pages and swiped the texture over the "stencil" randomly around the pages.  I had some of the texture left over so I just picked it up on the spatula and again just randomly added it to the pages for an aged look.  LOVE it.  This is where I start getting nervous because I LOVE the look of this.  I mean I could really just leave it like this...  But I had an idea and wanted to try it.  I really wanted to use ONLY Faber-Castell on this page, but in totally different ways.  The Gelato's are amazing for that!  (You'd think I work for them, lol... but I have absolutely no association with them) 

So here's a close-up of the first page.  Again I wish I would have taken more photos during the process so you could have seen this page before all the papers and embellishments... But getting back to Gelatos, they are an acid-free pigment "stick" that glides on just about any surface (paper, canvas, wood, etc.) and blends like a creamy texture into your artwork.  You can water down this pigment and it turns into a watercolor paint as well.  You can use your hands to blend the gelato into your work or you can use a blending sponge or a paint brush.  Have I said that they are FUN?  Ya... kind of addicting if you ask me!

So if you look at the top of this page you will see some pink color.  That was simply swiping the gelato over the page and then using my finger to blend it around. If you look toward the middle of the page I also swiped the gelato on the page in a horizontal motion and then sprayed the pigment with water.  I did this with pink, the gold tone and a dark brown tone.  I wanted to get "dripage" a turn I learned from the amazing Donna Downey.  Love the look of that and even though it was my first time experimenting with this technique, it won't be my last for sure!  I should note that I did the darker colors first, let them drip and then did the pink last.  What I really liked about this process is that the colors didn't fade as they dripped down my page.  They kept their pigment nice and vibrant.  And I love how they dripped down the texture dots and it shows you the differences from the SAME product.  Cool beans.

You can see on this page I did the same horizontal lines with the dripage and also down on the bottom right side I blended the Gelato into the page like on the top of the other page. But then I wanted to try the Gelato as a watercolor with a stencil.  This is the big arrow stencil at the top right of this page.  Now I have to say that I didn't think this turned out very good and I'm not sure what I need to do to get a better result next time.  I'll have to ask my friend who designs for them... But anyways, I put some Gelato color in a tray with water and then took a sponge paint brush that you use for stencils and dabbed on the paint over the stencil.  And it bled thru.  So when I took off the stencil the design was not as you see it now.  It had spread under the stencil and was kind of a mess.  I was able to use a baby wipe and clean it up (because of the gesso on the page prior to using the inks it will come off pretty easily with a baby wipe) and with my Faber-Castell pens I was able to go back in and give the arrows definition.  I still like how the overall stencil looks but I think I could use some tips on working with the Gelatos and stencils.  Now if I would have just used the Gelato dry over the stencil it would have worked just fine, but I wanted a water color look and that's where I need to learn a bit more...

So here's the finished pages.  I used some Webster's Pages papers and velum map paper and alpha stickers.  I also used some vintage lace and linen scraps and some Rub-ons. Oh I forgot to mention one more Faber-Castell products I used... their PITT artist pen in the picture above.  It's white so it's hard to see but I randomly drew in a circular pattern small circles around the pages.  I like it and thought it just added to the dimension of the pages.  

Overall I am now a HUGE fan of Faber-Castell products!  This wasn't really a "review" of their products but I will say that I am very impressed with all the products I bought from them and I did go out and buy more this week.  I wanted to try some of their other art supplies so you'll be seeing those in future blog posts I'm sure.  

So that's it.  My fun Sunday afternoon play time with me and Isabella.  Next time I'll have to share pictures of Isabella's art, she's got some skills!  This girls favorite thing is to get into my supplies (much to mommy's dismay some times...) and go to town on anything she can get her hands on. She'll grab my canvases, wood decor pieces I've been saving for "just the right project" or she'll just get pieces of paper and start doing her "thang"... hahaha  I try to remember to just let her be her own little artist and enjoy spending this time with her in her element.  Because times like this don't last forever.  I know because my older girls don't really want to join in on these "artsy" dates anymore.  So go grab those kiddos and make some FUN art time with them while they still want to PLAY!

Have a GREAT day everyone!

I'm headed to the doctor tomorrow to hopefully have a final say on what's going on with me and a decision on what type of surgery they will need to do.  I know a lot of you have been SO awesome praying for me and have asked for updates on things. THANK YOU SO MUCH for that!  It's been incredible to have such an amazing amount of people through FB and IG show so much support and kindness!  So hopefully tomorrow I will know more and be able to give an update on things.




P.S.  Tomorrow is also my "Becoming" story for Jeanne Oliver's online course.  You can find out more and the links to it on the last blog post below this one.   



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