Day 323 – That’ll Do

Art Apple - Day Three Hundred Twenty Three“That’ll do, Donkey. That’ll do.”

It’s Fairy Tale Friday!

What an amazing modern day fairy tale Shrek is. An ogre who finds true love with a princess who is beautiful on the inside. Shrek goes on quite an adventure all in the hopes of getting his quiet, lonely life back to normal and having his swamp ousted of all the fairy tale creatures.

What Shrek finds much to his surprise is friends and love. It’s an irreverent tale of happiness and life lessons! One of my favorite scenes is when Shrek helps Donkey face his fears – a scene when his heart starts to truly soften.

Shrek helps Donkey over a rickety bridge and says…

“Come on, Donkey. I’m right here beside ya, okay? For emotional support, we’ll just tackle this thing together one little baby step at a time.”

Shrek gets Donkey distracted – he says “That’ll do, Donkey. That’ll do.” His way of saying each step Donkey takes is one more that will get them there together.

All this and the return of “I’m a Believer!” Quite a tale – one that’ll do for sure!

Until tomorrow.


Day 323 was created in ink and watercolor.

In The Studio

1. Countdown – 42 days to The Big Apple Paint-A-Thon!

2. Apple Recipe of the Day – Apple Maple French Toast – on Mad Hungry on the Hallmark Channel!

3. Process Photo of the Day – Send me your Apple Photos – here’s Marisa with an Apple Basket she found at HomeGoods!

4. Check out the new and improved emails from – The Daily Apple! If you haven’t already done so, please sign up to receive apples in your inbox. The New Daily Apple will include information that I don’t post on my blog including art, health, and of course… apples!


Day 316 – An Apple Carriage Awaits Midnight!

Art Apple - Day Three Hundred SixteenAbout a month ago I posed a question on my Facebook page asking people what their favorite fairy tale was because I was looking for ideas for The Daily Apple and I received some amazing suggestions. Initially I was thinking of doing a week of Fairy Tale Apples but I decided that I would go insane and good ideas might start to get blurred together so…

I will be doing a Friday Fairy Tale apple each Friday from now to the end of my year and I have been really wanting to do Cinderella’s Carriage as an apple instead of a pumpkin.

Doug says I should have made the carriage red or green or yellow even – I can’t win! But to me it was always going to be a golden apple carriage.

A few updates:

1. The Daily Apple will be coming in your emails again soon – I’m working on changing the service so I can get you better information.

2. The Apple-A-Thon plans are coming along. Please make sure to mark your calendars for September 29th & 30th and sign up under separately with the “Contact” tab to receive information specific to the event.

3. Send me your apple ideas! I’ve got another 50 days to go and ideas are greatly appreciated at this point. Feel free to be as creative as possible and don’t worry if you think I have already done your idea – I got an idea from someone the other day and it was awesome and I hadn’t done it yet!

4. If you haven’t joined my Facebook page – I post The Daily Apple there too as well as things about art and health. I’d love to have you *like* me.

5. You guys are all so fantastic – thank you for supporting me through this year.

Until tomorrow.


Day 316 was created in inks and watercolor – and gold metallic!

If you like this apple – you might also like these days too!  Day 29, Day45, and Day 127

Day 303 – An Experiment

Art Apple - Day Three Hundred ThreeEvery great inspiration is but an experiment. – Charles Ives

Lately on Saturdays I’ve been creating a “Saturday Apple” – an apple that is pretty but simply painted and that doesn’t include any post. It was a bit of a compromise with Doug because I was spending a lot of time on the weekends on my blog. And, it was a way to get a little break for myself too. Today I sat down around noon and instead of just pulling out the paint I was dying to try a technique I’ve been researching. It is a method to transfer printed images onto a surface. It allows the artist to incorporate images into the piece without using a college technique that can lead to deterioration (ha in about 100 years or so) but…

I have really wanted to try it – but when you experiment you have to be prepared for failure even when it is accompanied with inspiration. I knew it was going to take a lot more time than a Saturday Apple but it was really hot out today and after planting a couple of new $2 Lowe’s special salvias, I was ready to cool off.

I had a lot of fun making today’s apple. I used fabric, gesso, thread, paint, scrap paper, and the image of the apple you see is my Zentangle Apple from Day 151. Is that cheating??? I used my own apple to make another apple. Anyway – I used this transfer technique and then stitched and painted and beaded – oh my!

I’m lovin’ making art. And honestly I cannot wait to create without constraint!

Until tomorrow.


Day 303 was created in a bunch of stuff! See above 🙂

In The Studio

1. Countdown – 62 days to Apple-A-Thon!

2. In The Studio – Process pic of the day

3. Apple Recipe of the Day – Apple, Rhubarb, and Cardamom Ice Cream

4. Interesting Article Of The Day – Have you tried Dry Needling For Your AS? I have and it really works for me!



Day 285 – Affects of Effects

Art Apple - Day Two Hundred Eighty FiveI’ve had a wonderful time in Maine!

I loved being home and I was so lucky to spend so much time with everyone. The affect this visit has had on my mental state has been tremendous! I had hit a place in my project where I was feeling very burnt out and overwhelmed. By being home with my family it makes me just realize even more that it is time to return. I’ve been away for almost 20 years and my spirit soars in Maine in a different kind of way.

I was speaking with my 14 year old nephew Jarod about how the effects of places and spaces have an affect on our psychies, our emotions, and our well-being. Where we feel at home is due to the people in our lives – I’m at home wherever Doug is – but a type of place or a city or a specific home can have enormous power. I’m ready to find a way to move back and be in the place that feels good and with my family who I’ve been separated from for half my life.

I am headed home to Doug today – he is my home.  But after this amazing trip I think I have him convinced it’s time for a change for both of us.

Until tomorrow.


Day 285 was created in mixed media: graphite, india ink, watercolor, and acrylics. I then ran the image through a creative effect filter in my graphics software and completely changed the look. One image created by hand, another by magic. The affect of the effects are quite stunning. Sometimes in life we need change – because when we do – amazing results can happen.

In The Studio

1. Countdown – 80 days to Apple-A-Thon!

2. My process photo from today.

3. Apple Recipe of the Day – Blueberry, Apple and Rhubarb Crisp.

4. Interesting Article of the Day – New genetic study of Ankylosing Spondylitis.



Day 201 – Bite Off More Than You Can Chew!

Art Apple - Day Two Hundred OneBite off more than you can chew and then chew like hell. – Peter Brock

This is the first Apple I’ve done with one bite out of it. Really – I’ve stayed away from that icon 🙂

Just because we’re making apples doesn’t mean we need anyone to associate us with “Apple” which is why I haven’t created any apple art that looks like their logo. If they happened to see our project and …

…well that would be an amazing thing for the world of AS awareness but I won’t hold my breath.

Maybe some day we could have “Apple” take notice. Why not take a huge bite – a huge leap of faith.

Something to chew on – and chew like hell!

Until tomorrow.


Day 201 was created in ink.

Day 200 – Woo Hoo!

Diseases can be our spiritual flat tires – disruptions in our lives that seem to be disasters at the time but end by redirecting our lives in a meaningful way.  ~Bernie S. Siegel

There are days when it feels like the air has been let out of my spiritual tires but I’ve been so lucky that the worst of those days are few and far between for me now with the treatment I get for my AS.

I see the disaster that AS makes of lives – I see it everyday in the people I have connected with in the last 200 days. But I also see that there are so many who have learned to turn the disaster of chronic illness into amazing attitudes and incredible spirits. We have learned to overcome the disruption it’s made of our lives.

For anyone who has been recently diagnosed or for anyone going through a difficult time whatever it might be – it will get better. It will. And, you will be stronger and better for living through the really bad, bad days. You will come out the other side of those days with a deep knowledge that you can survive anything.

There is enormous power in a life where you’ve already seen the days when your spirit was deflated and empty and looked hopeless and you made it out of those days, past the disruption and disaster and you did redirect. The meaning and understanding and love that comes out of the knowledge that you can survive is something you should hold close and believe with all your heart that it makes your future so much less scary than the person who has never seen or lived your adversity.

Until tomorrow.


Day 200 was created in Letraset Pantone Tria and Micron markers.

Day 182 – I Will Walk Where There Is No Path

Art Apple - Day One Hundred Eighty Two

Six months ago my life changed drastically.

At the time I was working as a software sales consultant. I would read business and strategy books for tips and to keep motivated but my career was unfulfilling and lacking so I picked up a book called Linchpin by Seth Godin – one of my favorite authors. One of the main points I took away from Linchpin was to find ways in your career to not get jaded and always work to be the linchpin of your organization. Although he doesn’t encourage people to up and quit their jobs – that is what I did. I had not read a book like it before. I’d been in jobs that I loved and hated but for the first time I saw my energies were truly being wasted. I craved something more. Since I spent almost 5 years not working at all due to AS, I felt behind my contemporaries and I didn’t think I could catch up – I was at a crossroads.

I had spent the 20 years since receiving my Bachelor of Fine Arts ignoring my artistic talent and convincing myself that I really didn’t want to be an artist; that I in fact didn’t want to create. I’m not sure how I pushed this huge part of who I am away for so long but I know now it was fear. I felt I had nothing I could tie the creative process to so I felt very uninspired when I painted. I was afraid I wouldn’t be good enough. I was afraid I would not succeed at it. I was afraid of exposing myself to criticism and because of all of this, it just didn’t feel good. On top of that, I was in pain and looking for answers. In the years when I was so sick before starting the anti-TNF’s I spent years in struggle, misdirecton, and never ending pain and fatigue. There was just no room left for me to think of my future; all I was doing was existing and coping. My path appeared to be paved to a future of physical pain, emotional strife, and not much else. They say amazing art can come from deep anger and pain but my spirit and soul want to paint hope and joy. So the art didn’t happen.

And then I felt better, went back to work, and eventually found myself at those crossroads six months ago.

I decided to be my own linchpin and to listen to Emerson:

“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

Six months ago I started my Apples for AS campaign and with it I found my inspiration. I’m at the half-way mark today and if feels so good to be on the journey, past the crossroads, and blazing a trail!

Until tomorrow.


Day 182 was created in pen & ink.

Day 141 – “Yeah, my back hurts too.”

Art Apple - Day One Hundred Forty One
Art Apple - Day One Hundred Forty One

Caution:  Rant ahead.

If I could collect a dollar for every time I heard the statement, “Yeah, my back hurts too”  I’d have enough money to fund the entire HHS and CDC!

Ok, that made me laugh. But the point is that this is what we, as people with Ankylosing Spondylitis, hear. If you think about it that is a really intolerant, insensitive, and completely unkind thing to say to someone whose spine is slowly fusing together.

Imagine… not being able to touch your toes. You aren’t out of shape or lazy or don’t do enough yoga – come on! Imagine… you can’t go skiing anymore because a fall could not only hurt you, like it would anyone, but it could kill you. Imagine… owning multiple heating pads – there is a reason they are blue – blue for spondylitis!  More on this with a wonderful guest apple I’ll be posting on Sunday. We aren’t dying, our disease is not terminal. We are just living a very difficult existence. Please be more tolerant and kind if you hear someone is dealing with AS or chronic pain.

I don’t want to rant but I’m passionate about trying to help people understand that there is a difference between my lovely husband waking up and saying he’s sore or his back hurts, and the pain I deal with. And – I’m doing so much better – I’m one of the lucky ones who can get access to the crazy expensive drugs that give me the strength and ability to have a basically normal life. Imagine… being one of my friends like Shashwata Satya from Bangladesh who is a brilliant young scholar who has had multiple surgeries and had a taste of life with Remicade but now can’t afford to continue to get it. He said “I could fly when I was on Remicade” and now he’s firmly attached to the ground and he’s suffering. Imagine… being my friend Ron who is charming and giving and a wonderful new friend I’ve met through ASAP who is in so much pain and he can’t get anything from the Canadian health care system (something I hear repeatedly) and that he’s distraught. Imagine… my dear friends – a life with AS.

Until tomorrow.


Day 141 was created in ink and acrylics.

Day 129 – Year of the Apple

Art Apple - Day One Hundred Twenty Nine
Art Apple - Day One Hundred Twenty Nine

I know, I know. It’s the Year of the Rabbit.

The Chinese New Year was celebrated all over the world today although the official start was a few days ago. The Year of the Rabbit promises to be a year of peace, love, and family. The Apple is the Chinese symbol for peace so in a sense – it is the year of the Apple! Yes, it’s a stretch but my year and hopefully yours will be full of peace – and Apples. The bunny can tag along if he’d like.

Until tomorrow.


Day 129 was created with Letraset Tria in Pantone 185-T.

Day Ninety eight – Michael, Michael, Motorcycle!

Happy Birthday to my older brother Michael!

We used to tease him endlessly by singing “Michael, Michael, Motorcyle.”  I guess in retrospect it was at least a cool motorcycle and not a “Michael, Michael, Micky Mouse” or “Michael, Michael, Mashed Banana.”  Here’s to you Michael  for putting up with your little sister all these years and supporting me in my endeavors and my art.  Love you.

Until tomorrow.


Day 98 was made with pen, ink, and watercolor!