10: Components of my peaceful morning

Components of my peaceful morning

I worked so hard on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday this week so today I am enjoying a morning off and tomorrow I will enjoy an entire day off!!

1125bbaa-43a0-4217-93b3-cc63f98768b9wallpaper*Collage by Photovisi.com

  1. Early start: I love to wake up at the quiet hour of 8 am.
  2. Favorite robe: This robe has been through a lot of days with me, it is a very important component to my relaxation at home. It smells like me and my home which is comforting. (the robe I linked is the exact one I have and love)
  3. Big Cozy Blanket: A big, heavy blanket is 100% necessary when I am sitting on the couch for more than 3 minutes doing anything! (My favorite one is so old so I can’t find a link for it)
  4. Favorite hot tea: This vanilla chai tea is my favorite for the cold weather days. During the summer I usually like fruity iced tea but this is the best hot tea I have found! I add a little squirt of agave nectar for a little unprocessed sweetness and organic skim milk to cool it off!
  5. Pandora: This morning it is Ben Rector radio. If you haven’t explored this website you really are missing out!
  6. Library Book, The Art of Racing in the Rain: This is the book, by Garth Stein, that I am enjoying right now. It is tugging on my heartstrings and making me think of my nephew puppies (my sister’s dogs who are my little friends, I don’t have a dog of my own) in a new light! More about the nephew puppies: https://thetorrodiaries.wordpress.com/2013/01/26/theres-snow-way-i-could-be-unhappy-on-this-beautiful-morning/ & https://thetorrodiaries.wordpress.com/2012/03/28/my-puppy-nephew-preston/I can’t read for a long period of time (makes me sleepy) so I switch back and forth from reading and sketching so I can enjoy both!
  7. Blank White Watercolor Paper and…
  8. Faber-Castell Black Pen: I like to sketch on watercolor paper in case I am going to add color! This is my favorite black pen. It doesn’t run when you watercolor over it.
  9. Yankee Candle: I currently have “Clean Cotton” burning for ambiance and a fresh, clean scent! Yankee candles burn the best and smell the best, in my opinion. Sometimes, I find them significantly discounted at TJ maxx!
  10. Mango: I cut up a mango this morning and put half of it on a small plate to enjoy. I like to pretend I picked it off of a tree in the middle of a sunny, isolated island and I am eating it on a lounge chair with the smell of the ocean in the background.

Dear Mondays,

Monday, Monday, Monday…

I am sorry, but you SUCK!

So, in order not to be miserable for one seventh of my working, adult, life I had to come up a list of things that make you not so bad.

1. A clean start: I can always appreciate a plain white sheet of drawing paper, ready to be made into something beautiful. A freshly cleaned, brand new set of sheets, ready to be slept in. A new book from which no one has read a single syllable. You, Monday, have these same “clean slate” qualities.  I like that about you.

2. Full fridge: I go to the grocery store on Sundays. When I get home, I cut up all the fruit and veggies, cook my soup or salad of the week, and prep anything else I need to prep. I love looking into a fridge full of Tupperware with healthy, delicious choices. As the week goes on, the selection reduces so for this reason, I kind of like you, Monday.

3. Rested: After a few days off, I am the most rested on Mondays.  After I have had some time to myself, I feel most physically ready to conquer the day on Mondays.

Things I tell myself on Monday mornings….

  • I am proud to be working to make money to support myself and my family.
  • I am a good role model for my daughter-to-be by contributing to the world in my own way, as a nurse.
  • I am blessed to send my husband off to work, in his own functioning car, with a full, healthy lunch, and a freshly washed outfit, knowing that he will be at home, waiting for me when I get there.
  • I can do anything for 8 hours and then I will have my personal time with my family.
  • We live on a planet with beauty surrounding us; stop for a minute, take a deep breath, and be happy to be a functioning, happy person on this giant planet, on which we are so small.

Happy Monday

A look back…a look forward

Going through pictures from my childhood bring back amazing memories and help me to imagine my life over the next few years with my little girl! This week I am 23 weeks, 17 to go until I meet my new little daughter!


The family gatherings/parties, the Saturday afternoons in the library picking out bedtime stories for the week, singing in the car together (poorly) , and much, much more are running through my mind. I am anticipating a lot of tears, frustrations, and hard times but mostly the small happy moments that I know will outweigh all the exhausting and sad ones!

Motherly Love

This is one of the best videos I have ever seen! My future relationship with my daughter comes to mind when I see the sweet, gentle, easy, and mindless comfort this mother provides for her baby. I can’t wait to experience the joys that come with the “mommy role”!!!


Picture 6

Thank you IllusiveMediaLtd for the video.

An afternoon amongst the books…

This afternoon I wandered over to Ocean City Library for a few hours to enjoy some quiet time amongst the books.

It is so inspiring to be standing in an isle with millions of hours and thoughts of all the authors from all over the world.

The smell of the pages is unlike anything else.

I can’t wait to bring my daughter over to the library to pick out bedtime stories for the week!!


I, of course, treated myself to a little, hummus snack afterwards.


I brought home: “The Art of Racing in the Rain” by Garth Stein; I enjoyed the first few chapters in the library and while eating my snack; so far, so good!

just paint over it…

The act of painting is a metaphor for life.

There are stages and colors that represent the experiences and emotions.

If you make a stroke or mark you don’t like, you wait for the paint to dry and paint over it. The drying and repainting acts are like healing and trying again.

Yes, it is “cheesy” but it is therapeutic, peaceful, and something one-of-a-kind comes from each painting session.


Now, you try….

“The world today doesn’t make sense, so why should I paint pictures that do?” ~Pablo Picasso

Gnocchi with Sausage Sauce

For dinner tonight, I cooked up a simple dish that I really like, potato gnocchi topped with sausage meat tomato sauce!download-6

First, I cooked a pack of Ronzoni potato gnocchi in salted boiling water. You know they are done when they float. I strained them and set them aside until the sauce was ready.

*tip, if you put a tiny drop of oil in the cooking water, the pasta wont stick together once you strain it and let it sit for a few minutes while your sauce or whatever else is being finished.

Then, I “squeezed” the meat out of the casings of 3 sausage links (you can choose any kind you like, the leaner the better if you are following WW, I chose organic turkey sausage) to make ground sausage. I browned the meat in a pan and added it to one 15 ounce can of tomato sauce. I added my favorite seasonings (garlic and onion powder, pepper, salt, and Italian seasoning blend) I heated the sauce throughout and spooned it over 1 cup of cooked gnocchi. I always grate asiago cheese on top with my favorite microplane! Enjoy!

This recipe makes about 2-3 servings.

Weight watchers Points Plus: 5 points for 1 cup of gnocchi, 3 points for 3/4 cup of sauce; TOTAL: 8 points plus **Add a point or so for the cheese (optional)

The turkey sausage packs a punch of protein and the lycopene in the tomato sauce is rich in antioxidants!!

Only have a half cup of gnocchi with a huge salad on the side if you don’t have as many points left!


Sketch to bow, new authentic technique!

Here is an example of an exciting and authentic new technique I am using in my shop

I am working on turning hand drawn/painted pieces of art into one-of-a-kind bows and accessories….

I turned this black and white sketch…


 into a very special piece of wearable art!


I created a fabric from the sketch to use for this piece! I am very proud and excited to create many more unique and special creations just like this one, using this technique!!


…and soon I will have a beautiful little model for these bows!

**Please understand that everything I post is for your personal use only- not for redistribution. I work really hard on coming up with my own ideas for my techniques, tutorials, art, etc; I love to share my creative passion with others, please be respectful of my property. Thank you! **

Thanks for your interest! Check out my shop, Heart of Gold by Torro.