#Mermay Recap and Summer Dreams

MerMay 2018

Yes, it is June, and yes, I did participate in Mermay – if only a little¬† ūüôā

I have a few things brewing, including some crafting for the babe, gardening and reviving habit plans. But the main focus is still my art, if we are talking creative activities. Of course spending time with my family and caring for my little one always comes first – at least for me.

It is almost summer now, and sure feels like it with many warm days and even some water fun for the babe already.

This weather puts me in the mood to paint summer and travel related things. I have couple topics I want to explore:

  1. Fernweh:
    I love travel. I have done a lot of travel and will do more in the future. But I also know that I cannot go everywhere I want to. At least not right now, and maybe never. But I always love to dream and look at pictures of other people’s travels. So I want to paint all this under the Fernweh topic. Fernweh is a German word and means the longing for a far away place.
  2. Childhood Memories:
    Today I was reminded of a wonderful summer childhood memory of mine by an Instagram post of a friend. This gave me the idea to paint my own childhood memories. Little stories. I may make them as paintings or as little comic strips. I kind of envision them like illustrations to a children’s book. This topic is not strictly summer related, although I have a lot of nice summer memories that I could start with and work my way through the season.

But I know, I know, I need to find some sort of routine to make time for the art. I have been struggling with that. One of my biggest weaknesses is that I am interested in too many things, and have not been able to say no to myself. I want to simplify my life and that means I need to let go of some things I want to do, at least for the time being. And this is a big reason I am trying to get back to habit plans.

But more about that in a future post. As a closer, here my Mermay pieces:

MerMay 1 - My cup of tea
MerMay 1 – My cup of tea
MerMay 2 - Sea Cuties
MerMay 2 – Sea Cuties
MerMay 3 - The fox and the siren
MerMay 3 – The fox and the siren
MerMay 4 - Rebel Mermaid
MerMay 4 – Rebel Mermaid
MerMay 5 - Frida de Mayo
MerMay 5 – Frida de Mayo
Mermay 6 - Gala of the Ocean
Mermay 6 – Gala of the Ocean

Easter Eggs: Water Color & Coloring With Food (Mini Tutorials)

Eggs dyeing in natural color . Clockwise from the top right we have turmeric (yellow), red wine (purple-ish), onion skin (brick red), another turmeric, blue berry (dark blue), and last and kind of least: paprika powder.

This year Easter will be on April Fool’s Day, but it’s no joke how fast it came up again. So fast that I didn’t have time to color any eggs yet this year.

I just finished my Easter decorations, even. I usually have some branches with budding leaves in a vase and hang some emptied and painted Easter eggs. Then over a few days the leaves will come out because of the warmth of the room, and these tiny bright green leaves will look adorable. I am unsure if the leaves will come out by Sunday. We will see.

My Easter Decoration
My Easter Decoration

The eggs are painted with watercolor paint. I have hollowed them, so I can use them again each year. I even have 6 more blank eggs to paint, maybe next year. To hollow them you just need to take a raw egg, make a hole in each end and then blow really hard into the top hole. The raw egg white and yolk will come out the other hole. It takes a little afford to do. You will need to blow hard. Once empty, I wash them with water and dish soap, making sure to get some soapy water into the egg, swirling it around to get the inside clean, and then blowing out the water through the hole. Then I repeat just with water a couple times to get all the soap out. After having dried completely, the eggs are ready to be painted. I chose a design with butterflies on a yellow background and a bunny in the meadow design for mine. Perfectly spring and Easter themed.

Easter eggs painted with watercolor and design with butterflies on a yellow background
Easter eggs painted with watercolor and design with butterflies on a yellow background
Easter eggs painted with watercolors and a bunny in the meadow design
Easter eggs painted with watercolors and a bunny in the meadow design

To be able to hang them I used a tooth pick, tied some magic thread on it (clear jewelry thread) and made a loop. I inserted the toothpick into the top hole. It will turn sideways and not slide out of the hole again. Voila, a cute Easter ornament.

In addition, I usually decorate some hard boiled eggs just for that year. I have done just plain colors from the store, painted like a galaxy and some natural coloring with food items and spices. I love the ones colored with food items and had great success in the past. Below a little tutorial on that.¬† I have used 5 different “colors”.

Recipes for the Natural Colors

  1. Onion skin (brick red): 1 cup yellow onion skins per cup of water. Boil in a sauce pan for 30 min. Remove peels.
  2. Red wine (sparkly purple): Just the wine
  3. Blueberry (dark blue): Mix 1 cup frozen blueberries with 1 cup water, bring to room temperature, and remove blueberries. Squeeze out the berries.
  4. Turmeric (yellow): Mix 2 tablespoons ground turmeric per cup of water.
  5. Paprika Powder (light red):  Mix 2 tablespoons ground paprika per cup of water.

I filled the coloring water into jars, added vinegar (1 tablespoon of vinegar per cup of color), and added white hard boiled eggs.

Eggs dyeing in natural color (from left to right: Onion skin, red wine, blueberry juice, 2 x turmeric and paprika powder)
From left to right: Onion skin, red wine, blueberry juice, 2 x turmeric and paprika powder.

I let them sit in there overnight, stirring occasionally. I was really happy about the results. However, the onion skin and the paprika powder turned out surprising, I expected the opposite results.

The red wine one turned out really interesting. There were tiny sparkling crystals all over it. I wonder what caused that. Here are some pictures of the result. Aren’t they fascinating?

Eggs dyeing in natural color . Clockwise from the top right we have turmeric (yellow), red wine (purple-ish), onion skin (brick red), another turmeric, blue berry (dark blue), and last and kind of least: paprika powder.
Clockwise from the top right we have turmeric (yellow), red wine (purple-ish), onion skin (brick red), another turmeric, blue berry (dark blue), and last and kind of least: paprika powder.
Egg colored with red wine has little sparkly crystals all over.
Egg colored with red wine has little sparkly crystals all over.

What do you usually do for Easter decoration?