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Felicia the Artist

In Felicia the Artist

Summer Holidays.

Summer Holidays

Last week Tim & I took off on our summer holiday to France. We flew from Cork to Carcassone with Ryanair, the flight is only an hour and forty five minutes. Pre- booking your seats costs a few extra euro, but to me, not doing it would ruin my holiday. That may sound a little dramatic but i’m extremely claustrophobic. A seat as close to the front as possible means a stress free flight – always a good way to start my trip!

Once we arrived we drove south to Ax- Le- Therme in the Pyrenees. Actually I drove, Tim gets to navigate. So after a few miles of trying to change gear in the door and being very careful of roundabouts we settled into enjoying the scenery.

This area of France is beautiful (isn’t most of it?) very little English is spoken and its just as you expect a French town to be. However, we only spent the evenings there really – the days were spent having mountain adventures!

Look how pretty!

Summer holidays

We have visited this region before so we did one walk that we couldn’t finish last time, and then chose new routes.

The big surprise this time was the heat. They seem to have crazy accurate forecasts, but what the temperature rose to and what it felt like were very different. On our second day it was forecast and hit 38.5°- that is unimaginable if you live in Kerry! However, two days later the forecast was for thunder and rain at 2 pm. At 2.15 pm the heavens opened and the temperature was 14.5°, bizarre, but there you have it.

Summer Holidays

Even though it was so hot, I wore long trousers for walking. The reason is pure vanity! You see, if you wear shorts you get a tan from the bottom of your shorts to the top of your socks. It cannot be evened up with fake tan (believe me I’ve tried!) You can tell the climbers in town in the evenings, they are the ones with the shocking white ankles and feet!

Visiting the Wolves.

One afternoon was spent at the ‘Maison de Loups’, this was definitely my favourite part of the trip. Now, I have to tell you I am not a fan of keeping animals out of their natural habitat. These wolves were born in captivity and have a huge area of nature reserve to roam in. I’m torn between wanting them to be running free and being so grateful that I could see them as close up as I did.

Summer Holidays

The park is divided into different areas for different wolves, here are the Arctic wolves.

Summer Holidays

European wolves.

Summer Holidays

And Canadian wolves. I cannot explain how much I love this creature, look at the paws!

Summer Holidays

I was so ridiculously happy I could have cried! They are so beautiful.

I had visions of the evening news having the headline: “Crazy women from Ireland arrested for trying to smuggle a wolf out of the country in her hand luggage”. So I resisted….. just.

All in all, the whole holiday was fantastic. If you like walking (not necessarily up mountains) beautiful scenery and good weather then I would definitely recommend a visit to the Pyrenees.



In Felicia the Artist

Ten Things you don’t know about Me.

Ten things you don’t know about me..

Maybe you don’t want to know them, but I’m gonna tell you anyway!!

Since this is a fairly new WordPress blog, and since I’m actually Tweeting a bit these days I have a few new ‘Followers’.

How pretentious does that sound?

You have to understand, I like meeting people, I like making new friends. If I met any of these people in real life I would want to know more about them. So i’m hoping that by sharing a bit about me, people will share a bit about themselves and we’ll get to know each other a bit better.

That’s a hint by the way, if you read this please write your own ‘Ten things ‘ list.

Here’s my list:

  1. My family and my home are my happy place. You know when you’re in the dentist or somewhere you’d rather not be, and they say, ‘think of you’re happy place’? Well, that’s my house.
  2. Tattoos. I have three of them and constantly think about getting another. I have the design ready, and i’d like it on my inner wrist, but at 47 is it too late for inner wrist tattoos???
  3. I am a hopeless romantic and I have no wish to be saved from this affliction. My main source of love comes from books ( and a few films), it started when I read Wuthering Heights at the age of fifteen. I only read it because I was obsessed with Kate Bush’s song, if she only knew what she has started!  “If he loved you with all the power of his soul for a whole lifetime, he couldn’t love you as much as I do in a single day” Yeah, after that I was lost forever to the romance!
  4. I have a life long loathing of cheese. The only exception to this is in the form of cheesecake and even then if its too creamy I don’t like it. It’s vile, stinky stuff, but it’s also Tim’s favourite food.
  5. A bit of positivity and humour will save the day. You’ll find plenty of my favourite quotes on my Pinterest board. One of my absolute favourites is this:Ten things you don't know about me Words to live by people!
  6. When I was asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, I always said ‘ A Mum’. I was always then told, ‘that isn’t a job’ – I beg to differ! Running a home and looking after a family takes planning and effort. I have worked in ‘proper jobs'(that’s my career advisors voice right there, not mine!) and its tough going trying to do both. I take my hat off to anyone who works and runs a home. Anyway, I’m a mum,I love it, so I achieved what I set out to do!
  7. To speak French and Italian fluently would be one of my dreams. However, I cannot. Building a house is another.
  8. Laziness is my pet hate. Don’t get me wrong, I love fluting around the house in my jammies. What drives me mad is when people say, ‘my life is so awful’ but then they won’t follow the advice they were looking for. That kind of lazy. Also, if my kids walk past something on the stairs (their shoes for example) and don’t pick them up… Aghhh!
  9. Being outside in the fresh air will cure pretty much anything. I am blessed to live where I do, it’s incredibly pretty. Walking the dogs on a windy day –  that makes it just about perfect.
  10. For as long as I can remember I have kept a book of names. Every time I heard a nice name I wrote it down. I had pages and pages of girls names and about five boys names. I have a rubbish memory for important things but I can remember kids names. If I ever go on Mastermind my specialist subject will be ‘ Celebrities kids names’!

So, there you have it. There is loads more I could tell you, but that will keep for another day.

I’d love to read your list, so tag me if you write one. 🙂

Felicia xx

In Felicia the Artist

Happy New Year!!

Well, its 2016 already, Christmas this year seemed to fly by which was odd when you consider that the build up seemed to start forever ago. We had a lovely time at home, we ate lots and often with family and friends, wine was poured, fun was had and many photos were taken.

I usually love the week between Christmas and New Year, I brim with ideas for projects and organising my home, but not this year. I think its the weather, Ireland (in case you don’t know) is sinking under the rain that has fallen continually for weeks now. We are fortunate to live on a hill so we haven’t had any flooding but my heart goes out to those people whose homes and businesses have been destroyed.

So, at the start of the new year I buy a new diary and a new notebook: the diary is essential, I am a list maker. I make lists of things I must do, phone calls I must make, shopping lists, menu plans, things the kids must do (which is ridiculous because the youngest is 19, but once a Mum….) every morning while i’m having my breakfast I look through it to see what must be done. I never use the phone for saving appointments, i’m strictly a paper and pen kinda girl (plus stationery shopping is one of my favourite things!)

This is a cheap as chips diary from Dealz that I prettied up!

The notebook is for my wish list. Each year for the last five years I have made this list, its for writing your biggest dreams, things that you want to happen, things that seem impossible but write them down anyway and send them out into the universe and see what happens! It is suprising when you read them back what has come into being, not necessarily in the way you thought it would but in an ‘Everything happens for a reason , when one door closes another opens ‘kind of way.

I realise that sounds totally airy fairy, but try and it and see.

Anyhoo, I haven’t written this years one yet, but it will get done soon.

What have I done?…….

Well, Molly’s goddaughter turned one on the 28th December and I have made her a rabbit. It is about half and half hand sewing and machine sewing and once I got the ears on the right way round (which took several attempts) it was finished quite quickly. The stitching isn’t great, but she is one and won’t care 🙂

My December Daily is finished! I only did up until the 26th but its finished. I had all the photos taken but only printed them out every few days so it was the 31st of December before I finally got it done. I’m really pleased with how it turned out.

Tomorrow is back to work for most people and a bit of normality will return, i’m going to start my lists now for the coming week, have one last glass of wine and ignore the chocolates that are still hanging around.

I wish anyone who reads this a very healthy, happy and prosperous 2016!!

Felicia xxx

In Felicia the Artist

Its Beginning to Look a lot Like……

Its beginning to look a lot like…… dare I say it? No!

It is the last day of November, we have all been bombarded with those adverts since the day after Halloween, but its not really the season until I hear ‘All I want for C——-s is you’ on the radio.

 ( * a quick disclaimer* I am not a Mariah Carey fan at all but there is something about the introduction to that song that makes my insides fizz – instant festiveness!)

However, tomorrow is the first day of December and so the ‘DECEMBER DAILY’ begins and I am just a little bit excited!!!

If you don’t know about the December Daily then have a look at Youtube or Pinterest, you’ll find loads of examples there. It is basically an album to document the month (or up until the 25th) you take a photo every day and write something about it and at the end you have a journal of your lead up to that thing that we can’t mention yet.
I made one in 2013 but last year I didn’t get around to it , which now makes me quite sad as they are so lovely to look back through. This year I am actually quite organised (I know, not like me at all!)
I have made a monster of an album, the spine is 3 inches wide and it has taken ages! I used ‘North Pole’ papers by Trimcraft – they are a little unusual, all red and blue, no green but I loved them for the airmail stripe paper!

 You can never have enough space in these things so I have paper bag pages attached to the main pages.

Look at that Airmail stripe, I love it! – it reminds me of the letters my Dad would send home from the Gulf when I was small.

The spine so far…. I’m pretty sure more stuff will get added before the month is out.

 My friend Sally gave me this box recently and it was perfect for keeping all my bits ready for embellishing – its amazing what you can find in your stash! The numbers are from a ‘Simple Stories’ collection pack, I covered them with glossy accents to give a little shine. The small banner style numbers (in the bottom left corner) came from a free printable on Pinterest, I just glittered them up a bit – you can find it here.

 The front of the album is plain enough – I keep them on the book shelf so the front and back covers can’t have any bulky embellishments.

I’m going to the Create with Kate party on the 12th (all details in the link, I have free seats in the car if anyone wants to go!) I never get any work done at these things,too busy chatting and catching up, but just in case i’ll bring it along.

I’m all set now – all I have to do is remember to take the photos!

In Felicia the Artist

Polly Dolly kits:

Each kit contains:

A printed image from one of my hand painted original designs
A long piece of fabric to make a flower
Two leaves, a button, ribbon and a small piece of embroidery
thread to attach the button.
To make the flower:  
Fold the fabric length ways, right sides out.  Sew along the open edge with a running stitch;
gently pull the thread until the fabric forms a rosette and sew onto your
Here are a couple of ideas for using your Polly dolly kit:
                                                         I used it for a cushion:

                                                                   And for a tote bag:
                    I hope you enjoy making your Polly dolly project, get creative and have fun!
In Felicia the Artist

Trick or Treat Bag Swap.

Even though she has just had a baby girl, Aideen from Aideens Swaps organised a Halloween swap. You had to make some sort of trick or treat bag (s) fill them with treats and send them off to your swap partner.
So lets see – you get to craft Halloween stuff and you get chocolate? of course I signed up!

First of all I made a card, this was Graphic 45 Steampunk Spells from last year.

I got the witches legs from a friend who cut them with her Craft Robo (credits here) Thank you Kay!
The broomstick bag is full of goodies, and the black bag has a scene made from Graphic 45 Rare Oddities paper. I’m not a huge fan of fussy cutting but this paper line makes it easy!

I put a battery operated tealight into the bottom of the bag to light it up, but of course I didn’t take a photo of it lit. 
I am waiting for the parcel to arrive before I post this – Sabrina got it today, I can’t wait to see what she has made, thank you in advance Sabrina!!  
I love swaps!!!
In Felicia the Artist

The Best Season of All.

Well, its here again, the season of new boots, the season of cosy, my favourite season of all – Autumn!
On the first of the month I started with subtle decorations, even I thought it was a little early for pumpkin carving, so thanks to a little Pinterest inspiration (who am i kidding, it was hours of deliciously lost time finding all sorts of Autumnal goodness) I started to gather some leaves and cones on my walks and put this together.


The jar in the centre is covered with leaves and wrapped in raffia. I used Mod Podge to glue them on but the leaves had to be held in place while they dried, so the next one I made I used a hot glue gun and that was much quicker. It has a battery operated tea light inside which creates a lovely glow along with the small Pumpkin spice candles.
I found the little clay pumpkins at Mr Price, they were really cheap so there are six or seven in the tray, the tray itself was made by Himself. The conversation went something like this:

Me: Do you have any wooden trays lying about in your workshop?
Tim: What kind of wooden tray?
Me: Oh you know, one about 24″ by 6″ by 2″….
Tim: Hmmmmm…………
(imagine measuring, the sound of sawing and nailing)
And then I came home and found this.

Thank you Tim!!!! xxx

The Virginia Creeper that grows across the back wall of our garden is a great barometer of the seasons.The leaves turn the most beautiful red colour and then start to fall, but with a chiminea and candle lamps the garden is still a lovely place to be. That clay pot with the spiders web on is a lamp, we have electric sockets on the deck so it plugs in and looks so pretty – if I was any good I would insert a photo of it lit here, but its raining at the moment, so I’m not going out to take a photo!

Along with decorations I have made a few Halloween Trick or Treat bags for a swap organised by Aideen . They went in the post today, so as soon as my swap partner gets them I shall put up some piccys.

Have a lovely week xxx

In Felicia the Artist

Making Polly Dollies.

 Last Sunday I had some friends over to play – they came over with paints and glue and paper and all manner of things so that we could make Polly Dollies.

Adding blusher and lipstick!
Painting on eyes
A little hairdressing
Adding to backgrounds
The finished products-
They are so pretty!

                                                   All so different and all their own work. It was a lovely day to spend with friends – I hope you all come over again soon!!

In Felicia the Artist

Art Journal class with Karen Mathews.

I was going to blog about this class the very next day, but here I am FOUR weeks later!
Better late than never.
The lovely Karen Mathews came to teach her art journal class at my house, her art journal is beautiful ( if you ever get to meet her have a peek)  
We did two journal layouts, the first was a double page spread featuring a jar of hearts.

                                               This is when the table was somewhat organized.

                                                                      Thats Karen!

                                                                      Getting messier…

                                                                 I love this page!

                                               paint covered hands are not for everyone!

                                                And then we started on the lettering page:

 It turns out that those Inktense pencils that I’ve had for years are the best fun ever!

Everyone found the day to be really relaxing, it flew by and was a great way to either add to or get started on our art journals. Thinking of what to write after “Just be” was trickier than you would think!

It was such a good class that when everyone was gone and the kitchen was back to looking like a kitchen  I sat down and added another page.
Thank you Karen for coming all the way down to Kerry, and thank you to all the ladies who came.