Art Journaling Workshop & Our Garden

June brings with it sunshine, gardening, and the annual Art Journaling Workshop. It’s a joy to open my studio and courtyard garden to fellow creatives who sign up for the workshop.

In the workshop, having a theme, word, object, place, or idea to begin with is encouraged. Sending out prompts helps prepare for the 2 1/2 day workshop. My visual theme was trees, and my word: cultivate, as you see above.

Cultivate means: to prepare and work the land in order to raise crops, till; to promote or improve growth by labor and intention; to develop or improve by education or training; to promote the growth or development of an art, science etc., foster, to devote oneself to an art, science etc.,to seek aquaintance; to seek or promote a friendship, love etc.

Here we are, in the workshop, having been cultivating our art journaling skill and passion. I am grateful and blessed to have connected with these lovely women.

We started out painting papers, and built our journals from there…

This photo (below) was taken a few hours before the end of our workshop.

When I got back the evaluations, they reflected my feelings too. The workshop was great! And we wanted more. More time to process, practice, and play. Ten out of twelve people work in helping professions. This information and recognizing our need for personal renewal, reflection, while learning new art techniques is causing me to consider some new things….

Cultivating & Nurturing

This spring and summer, the idea of cultivating and nurturing has been a theme of our yard and garden.

For my birthday and Mother’s Day this year, Keith bought me some metal feeding troughs. Then we bought garden soil, and plants for a kitchen garden.

What used to be an unsightly space behind the studio has become my whimsical kitchen garden. It makes me happy each time I see it and we are already harvesting some salad fixin’s. The whirly-gig is from Costco.

We do not have a sprinkler system, so hand watering needs to be done each hot summer day. It takes awhile, and to be honest, has become tedious over the years. This year I decided to look at it differently. I decided it was a time for me to feed and nurture our plants, and my soul. When I go out to water, I think of how much God loves me and wants to spend time with me. I imagine the time watering, not a drudgery, but a time for me to listen and receive from God, being nurtured like a watered garden. This change in my thinking has caused me to enjoy watering time with God and nature. The bonus is our plants have never looked better. It must be the added water they’re receiving this year. Hopefully the same is true for my soul. One thing I know, It has given me more peace than I ever thought it would.

So much of what I’m passionate about involves people, visual expression, and growth. The growing season seems extra accelerated this year, in all areas of my life. This summer I am going to take some some time to sit in the sun in the courtyard garden… as the winds of change are blowing… enjoy the moment… and contemplate what’s next

StencilGirl® Products L577
Pomegranate, Seeds, Grape, Apple, Flower
Large 9×12″

To see more of
Valerie’s stencil designs

to go to the
StencilGirl® Products page

In May 2018 New Class Added
to Bible Journaling with Stencils & More E-Course

At the end of May 2018 a new Bible Journaling lesson was added to the Bible Journaling with Stencils & More E-course featuring the Woman at the Well – John 4, including video demo with insights on the meaning of the text, and Bible Journaling margin image PDF.

Links to Posts about Word-of-the-Year & Everyday Journaling:

Making an everyday, calendar journal in a Leuchtturm1917 or Moleskine journal:

Ideas for scroll and banner headings for theme pages in an everyday journal:

About exploring a word of the year:

A surprise that led to an animal of the year:

“Why Journal? The Benefits of Journaling” . In addition to the post contents, check out the comments. People have contributed great reasons for journal keeping.

If you are seeking a Word for the year, you may find inspiration in the post “Listening for My Word of the Year.”

Visit my Pinterest Board:

Bible Journaling often is another facet of exploring a word or theme. In the Bible Journaling with Stencils & More e-course, I walk through how I Bible journal, the process of study and techniques. To find out more information check out:

Join Our Inspirational Facebook Group

Bernice Hopper, and Mary Brack, and I share insights through blog posts for keeping an Everyday Calendar Journal. We will be using the journal to record events, experiences and relationships; to explore our word’s meaning in visual and fun ways. If you would like to connect with others in creative way about organizing your word, your ideas, thoughts, prayers, events, or your projects all in one place, you are invited to join our Facebook group: Everyday Journals ~ Living Your Word of the Year.
URL for Facebook group:

URLs for Instagram: #livingyourword2018 & #everydayjournals2018




Valerie: (this one :-))

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