Glimmerbug Handmade Art

handmade and unique whimsical art

Weekend Wrap Up and Highlights: Berries, Jams and Best Friends

Kids, Our Country Home, PersonalJill AdamyComment
Starting to pick the blackberries, along with a couple of extra little goodies from our new garden.

Starting to pick the blackberries, along with a couple of extra little goodies from our new garden.

Each day we’re outside, we’ve got an audience of wildlife that watches us as we work around our yard. This little sweetie was out watching me as I picked green beans.

Each day we’re outside, we’ve got an audience of wildlife that watches us as we work around our yard. This little sweetie was out watching me as I picked green beans.

In the Garden

As the summer winds down and the hot days seem to be coming to a close, we’re slowing down on our blueberry picking (only about 4 quarts per day now)! Next up are all the vegetables from our little mini garden. We have never had a big veggie garden so when we decided to start one earlier this summer, we started small. Just a small little 4x4 raised garden that we found online. Figured it was a good, manageable start for me and the kids to tend to and see if it was something we could keep up with. We didn’t plant too much, just your standard: green beans, peppers, peas and tomatoes. So far, I’m happy to report, the green beans and peppers are flourishing! We’ve got quite an abundant crop going on over here and the kids run out there each day and joyfully pick what’s available. The tomatoes on the stalks are getting bigger and hopefully will be turning red pretty soon, as we patiently watch them grow.

I’m sure I’ve mentioned that this house has 25 blueberry bushes that are quite mature, so the crop that we’ve been picking at since July has been nothing short of plentiful! If I’ve calculated correctly, we’ve picked over 60 pounds of those juicy little blueberries! They’re gorgeous, sweet and plump! Funny fact: We actually call the blueberry patch “Frannie Farmer’s Blueberries” because our oldest pug, named Frances, loves hobbling out there in the mornings to watch us pick and to be gingerly fed some sweet berries here and there by her favorite boy!

My 7 year old has the magic touch when it comes to our old pug, Frances. She’s a little picky about who feeds her by hand and loves it when he is out there picking blueberries because then she’s able to enjoy quite a few handfuls of her favorite treat!

My 7 year old has the magic touch when it comes to our old pug, Frances. She’s a little picky about who feeds her by hand and loves it when he is out there picking blueberries because then she’s able to enjoy quite a few handfuls of her favorite treat!

Blueberry Jam

We’ve never made jam before, and I’ve always wanted to try my hand at canning. It’s evaded me… til now. We just happened to move in next door to a lovely woman who is an expert at canning pretty much everything! So on Saturday, my 9 year old aspiring baker and foodie was invited to visit next door for a jam making lesson. And let me tell you, it came out DELICIOUS! And I’m not a blueberry fan! Talk about sweet and scrumptious. She was able to make 15 jars of jam and very proudly has labels for these jams so she can sell them and give them away to friends and family.

Beautiful and plump blueberries from our patch. So far, nearly 60 pounds picked (but we’ve also left a bunch for the birds who love them!)

Beautiful and plump blueberries from our patch. So far, nearly 60 pounds picked (but we’ve also left a bunch for the birds who love them!)

Here’s my little beauty getting ready to go pick more blueberries in the morning. She even got a little floppy hat to shield her from the sun on those super sunny mornings!

Here’s my little beauty getting ready to go pick more blueberries in the morning. She even got a little floppy hat to shield her from the sun on those super sunny mornings!

Learning to can and make blueberry jam with our lovely next door neighbor. She’s totally hooked on making jam now!

Learning to can and make blueberry jam with our lovely next door neighbor. She’s totally hooked on making jam now!

The rest of the weekend was spent with all of my favorite friends who we both unexpectedly ran into and stopped by for a visit. First off, my very best friend came over for a visit with the kids (who absolutely ADORE him and his son) so we had a great time, laughing and eating berries in the yard as the kids chattered on and on about school, summer stuff and then talked the 18 year old into reaching the higher berries on the trees!) What’s wonderful is that they love my BF almost as much as I do!

Next up was Saturday night with my best high school girlfriends for a BBQ and game night. So many laughs (how did I not piss my pants!) and always such an easy and relaxing time, sitting out on the porch swapping stories from the week and making plans for upcoming fairs and such. These are the aunties that my kids love spending time with (and getting spoiled by).

Finally, a nice quiet lunch out yesterday when we run into a wonderful friend of our family… and it’s the guy who we’ve always purchased our cars from. Nearly 10 years ago we met and he’s fondly known as “Uncle Teddy” now. It’s like we ran into Elvis! These kids were so so happy to see him yesterday and visit with him (we haven’t seen him much since he moved). It was an unexpected surprise that we all loved!

What I love about seeing all these wonderful people over the weekend is that each of them have embraced my kids as their own. None of them are related to us, yet ALL of them treat the kids as their own nieces and nephews. We’re so fortunate to have that and that these littles are growing up surrounded by such loving and positive people who adore them. They are the Uncles and Aunties that pay attention, play games, go to softball, baseball and field hockey games and just plain show their love and affection to these kids. I couldn’t ask for a better group of friends and I’m thankful for them everyday.

So that’s it in a nutshell for our weekend wrap up. We’ve only got a few days left til school starts, devastating this mama by leaving me home alone without any little kids around. I will anxiously await the bus to arrive home that first day and hear all about the stuff that went on during the first day! Bags and backpacks are ready to go. Now I just need them to come home on the first day with smiles and giggles telling me about their day!

Have a great week!

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New Painting: "In the Garden" Acrylic and Ink Painting

Flowers, Mixed Media Projects, New Art!Jill AdamyComment
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Every day when I wake up in this house, I’m inspired to create art. From the endless supply of fresh fruit, to the abundance of adorable wildlife in my garden, each and every day is a wonderful gift of inspiration!

This weekend I finished up a piece I’ve been working on in preparation for the “Bolton and Harvard Open Studios” event that will be here September 28-29. I’ve got a lot of new pieces to share that will also be available for purchase and I’m adding this beauty to the art shop wall this week!

It’s a rather large painting measuring 18” x 24” and filled with bright and vibrant flowery blooms. Of course, in every garden inspired painting I do, there are 3 ladybugs and 4 bumblebees hidden among the florals to represent my 3 kids and 4 dogs, who are all the loves of my life! Couldn’t have ever asked for a better group to surround me each and every day!

Wanna see more photos of this painting? Here you go! And it is available here for purchase.

Have a wonderful week and enjoy the first week of school if it’s starting for your crew! Ours begins on Wednesday and if I’m honest, I’m crushed that they won’t be with me all day every day. Gotta find a new norm and new routine! Funny that the kids are more excited than the parents in this house. But I’m excited for them and can’t wait to hear all about their new adventures and what the year will hold. We’ll have a middle schooler too, so that will be a new thing for all of us!

Weekend Wrap Up and Highlights: Newport Mansions and Vanderbilt's Zillions

Kids, PersonalJill AdamyComment

We’re the type of family that really likes to just hang out at home on the weekends. It’s relaxing and since we consider this house our “vacation year round” house, it’s always exactly where we want to be.

But this weekend, it was a little different. While Saturday was spent running errands (and selecting field hockey equipment for camp this week!), Sunday was a tad bit different. It was go-go-go for all of us! In fact, as I sit here typing this blog post on Monday morning at 7:30, all the kids are still fast asleep in their beds, recovering from all the hectic activities they did!

My oldest and youngest went with dad and a friend to Comicon in Boston yesterday. They all love comic books, anime and that sort of thing so they were super duper excited to go in and see all their favorite characters as well as all the costumes. People really get into this! My daughter and her friend got dressed up in costumes from their favorite anime shows and were thrilled when they were stopped in the convention center to take pictures with some other kids that recognized their costumes. My son, who is about the biggest Star Wars fan there is, dressed up as Jango Fett. He’s 7 and this was his first time at the conventions and my husband said that he just walked around stunned with his mouth agape, not believing all that he was seeing. So adorable and so so glad they all had a great time.

My middle child and I aren’t really into that sort of thing. So we decided that we were going to take a ride to Newport, RI and take a tour of a few mansions. Just a little backstory: She’s 9 and is completely obsessed with gilded age people and has studied the big tycoons of that era: Rockefeller, Carnegie, Vanderbilt, Frick… all those big wigs. So going to Newport to see some of the “cottages” that these folks lived in was an absolute dream come true for her.

The Marble House

Owned by Alva Vanderbilt and her husband (who gifted this to her for her 39th birthday) who was, as I understand, about as bad ass as they come for that era.

This house was just ridiculously opulent and over the top decorated with so much gold and marble, we could hardly keep our eyes on our head. What really blew me away was the ceilings in this house. Just incredible how much detail went into every inch of every surface.

The Breakers

Owned by yet another richer than rich Vanderbilt heir, this one was just too much to even take in! The sheer size of this place was over the top. My daughter and I walked around just stunned by all of the decor and how intricately decorated every surface was. It’s just staggering to think of people actually living like this.

It’s funny how when you go into a place like this and it’s just so palatial and extravagant and you think, “Could I live here?” And the answer both my daughter and I came up with was, “No thanks!” It’s gorgeous and all… and all the possible room you could ever want to run around in, but it’s also very uncomfortable and not welcoming. Now, believe me, I know that wasn’t the intent of making it a comfy house when it was constructed. But I can’t help but think about all the kids that this house has had as residents (both as heirs and as the staff’s children). It’s mind blowing to me to think of these little kids who had to be so prim and proper, and be so ultra careful not to break anything, touch anything or speak out of place. Gracie and I both agreed it wouldn’t have been a good fit for us or our family!

As I look through all the photos we took yesterday and all the gorgeous decor we saw, it inspired me to create some pieces based on these rooms, ceilings, alcoves and architecture that we were able to see in person. The color combinations are fabulous and the ceilings… I can’t get over them. Have I mentioned how much I love the ceilings in these homes?!?! Makes me see lots of great ideas for future art projects and paintings based on these designs!

Recycled Snowman Ornaments are My Favorite!

Christmas & Holiday, New Art!Jill AdamyComment
Adorable little snowman ornaments are all handmade from recycled paperboard and decorated with an eye catching black and white ribbon.

Adorable little snowman ornaments are all handmade from recycled paperboard and decorated with an eye catching black and white ribbon.

I don’t know about you but I absolutely HATE throwing away cereal boxes. It drives me nuts! I look at these large areas of paper board and try to think what I can do with them! I end up keeping pretty much every box in my storage closet until I figure out a good use for them. From ATCoins to ornaments, I’ve been able to use every cereal box my kids have finished for about a year!

This week, I decided to use my 2.5” hole punch to punch out some circles and glue them together to make thicker pieces. I painted them white and aged them with darker brown paint. Then I cut out some carrot shaped noses and painted those orange to adhere to the snowman face and make them a little more 3 dimensional.

I love how cute they came out! They’re fun and have such sweet little faces that would just adorable on a tree or decorating the neck of a gifted bottle of wine.

You can check these out in my shop here!



New Art Pieces Available! Come See What's New!

Christmas & Holiday, Flowers, Mixed Media Projects, New Art!Jill AdamyComment
New paintings and ornaments are now available in my  online art shop!

New paintings and ornaments are now available in my online art shop!

With summer fast approaching a closing date, I’ve been trying to create some new pieces to add to my online art shop. Small works of art that are easy to find a special place to sit and cheer up a room! It’s no secret that I love flowers so most of my pieces focus on flowers because they bring such joy and happiness to my own life. Simplistic and colorful. Those are two of my favorite things!

I’ve also been busy creating some new holiday pieces to share with you. A bunch of new handmade ornaments. As I’m sure you’ve read, my family recently moved into a new home and this coming Christmas will be our first in this house. There’s a lot more room here, so I’m thinking of putting up several more holiday themed trees throughout the house. I’m sure this will be an ongoing venture for the rest of my life because I’ve only just begun this whole thought process! But, I figure, let’s get a head start on creating some new ornaments that I’d personally hang on my Christmas trees!

Living in New England, there are barns about every 15 feet! And I love them! Especially the ones I see in our new town. So I’ve painted 3 small canvases and turned them into ornaments. Perfect for a farm themed tree!

Living in New England, there are barns about every 15 feet! And I love them! Especially the ones I see in our new town. So I’ve painted 3 small canvases and turned them into ornaments. Perfect for a farm themed tree!


I’m also a total snowman freak and leave those little guys up til Spring arrives! I love happy little snowmen and colorful, vibrant scarves and hats. So I’ve painted a bunch of those too! They’re also available in the Ornaments section of my online shop.

Aren’t they ridiculous? I just used flat little canvases that are 4” x 4”, did a few layers of paper, paint and doodles and they came out so sweet!

Aren’t they ridiculous? I just used flat little canvases that are 4” x 4”, did a few layers of paper, paint and doodles and they came out so sweet!

Of course, all these and more to come will be available in my online art shop as well as in person at the Bolton & Harvard Open Studios in September. If you are in the area, stop on my and check out my art, say hello and have some laughs while you’re here! I can’t wait for it!

New York City 2019 and Updates on Life

Kids, PersonalJill AdamyComment
Times Square view from our hotel at the Marriott Marquis. Hello “Good Morning America!”

Times Square view from our hotel at the Marriott Marquis. Hello “Good Morning America!”

After a few harrowing weeks of dealing with some pretty scary issues with my elderly mom who lives with us, we decided at the last minute to surprise the kids and take them away for a few days to their favorite places in New York City! Because my mom lives with us and I’m her sole caretaker, we don’t get to go away at all because she can’t be left alone in the house for longer than an hour or so. I guess I could have hired someone to come in, but she wouldn’t have liked that (and neither would we) so we have stuck very close to home since she moved in with us over a year ago.

I’m so lucky because I don’t have the type of kids that have to go, go, go all the time or constantly bitch about going to Disney or why we can’t go on vacation ever. They’re happy with picnics on the town common or going to a movie for a few hours. I’m so thankful that these little kids are mine because they make a very stressful situation a lot more tolerable and enjoyable.

That being said, there have been tears here and there because we can’t just go on a whim to do something as a family. There has to be planning involved. Scheduling a CNA to come and take care of my mom so that we could drive them back and forth to my mother-in-laws house. That sorta stuff. Needless to say, it’s been a rough patch for everyone.

My mom fell a few weeks back and has been in the ICU and now a rehab facility. For now it’s the right place for her because she’s really having trouble with confusion (no doubt because she hit her head so hard when she fell in the middle of the night) and physical limitations after the fall. Her depression is also heartbreaking and concerning so it’s really the best place for her to be now that she needs 24 hour skilled nursing care. So… as you can imagine, it’s been a rollercoaster of emotions for everyone here, especially these 3 little kids who really needed something positive to look forward to and get excited about.

We decided to take an impromptu trip to NYC and visit some of their favorite places that we all enjoy together. Because we could only get away for 2 nights (I had to be back for another CAT scan for my mom on Friday), we packed in as much as we could and had the kids pick what we did and where we went. Staying at our favorite hotel, the Marriott Marquis, is always a must. I don’t think it’s because of the view as much as it is the elevators that are open to the entire lobby and soar quickly up to the top of the 45th floor! The kids LOVE those elevators! The front desk clerk is a wonderful woman who really gives the kids the royal treatment every time we’re there. This time, she said she had a surprise for them and gave us a room looking directly over Times Square and the famous New Years Eve ball! Plus, we were able to watch the Good Morning America set and see Michael Strahan himself walking around the set outside below our window!

The kids chose to have dinner at our favorite restaurant, Becco, over in Hell’s Kitchen. If you haven’t been there yet, definitely go. It’s outstanding and they have “all you can eat” pasta, which is our favorite thing in the world!

The appetizers at  Becco  were amazingly delicious as usual. The caesar salad was to die for.

The appetizers at Becco were amazingly delicious as usual. The caesar salad was to die for.

Every day at  Becco , they have a “pasta symphony” where they have 3 different pasta dishes that are “all you can eat.” When we were there, they had the most delicious three cheese pasta, spaghetti with fresh tomato sauce and a braised short rib and ziti. Scrumptious!

Every day at Becco, they have a “pasta symphony” where they have 3 different pasta dishes that are “all you can eat.” When we were there, they had the most delicious three cheese pasta, spaghetti with fresh tomato sauce and a braised short rib and ziti. Scrumptious!

Once we left Becco and started the walk through Hell’s Kitchen, down 46th towards 8th Avenue where we went to our favorite gelato shop to indulge in some sweets after such a fabulous meal. Amorino is a little hole in the wall that features the most deliciously rich gelatos I’ve ever had! It’s usually completely packed with a line out the door but it’s worth the wait. Especially when you pick up your cone at the end of the counter and it’s shaped like a rose! Complete with a delicious little macaroon perched on top!

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The next day we spent at our favorite place in the world (next to our house): Yankee Stadium. It’s like a home away from home where we all have such a wonderful time, indulging in our favorite baseball players and all the great food that Yankee Stadium has to offer! Hubby got great seats too, which was so awesome! My middle kid is the biggest Yankee fan (especially since my dad died last year, she’s sort of thrown herself head first into being obsessed with them like he was.)

After about a 1 hour rain delay, the game went on and our team won! What a great time we all had, being with the other fans and watching all the action and home runs happen right in front of us! We were all hoarse from the hootin’ and hollerin’ we did as we cheered on the home team! And to walk out of there listening to Frank Sinatra croon was epic for all of us!

Learning about flying a boomerang from the fantastically fun guy at FAO Schwartz.

Learning about flying a boomerang from the fantastically fun guy at FAO Schwartz.

Our last day was spent over in Rockefeller Center at the FAO Schwartz store, Lego store and American Girl store. The kids had never been to FAO before so it was pretty cool seeing all the neat toys and different things that you don’t see at Walmart or big box stores. The Barbies alone were just fantastic!

So that’s what’s been going on with us and what we’ve been doing to keep busy over here. With summer winding down and still a ton of stuff on our “Bucket List” to do, we’d better get moving on checking off some more stuff on our list of activities!

Christmas In July: Vintage Seed Packet Ornaments

Mixed Media Projects, YouTube Videos, Create with Me Projects, Christmas & HolidayJill AdamyComment
Vintage Seed Packet Ornaments for a Garden Themed Christmas Tree

Vintage Seed Packet Ornaments for a Garden Themed Christmas Tree

Moving into this country house has inspired me to decorate it in vintage and country themes. Right now, in the middle of July, we’ve got an Americana theme rockin’ over here that I absolutely adore! I think I’ve signed up for about a thousand country farmhouse style magazines so that I can really find ideas that work for our house and decorate it so that it’s beautiful each season. Of course, shopping for all new stuff comes with a hefty price tag and I’ve got to be careful not to spend the “family fortune” on all the shopping that I need to do! But I’ve been lucky so far… I’ve raided every clearance department at Michaels, JoAnns, HomeGoods and Hobby Lobby and I’ve found some great stuff to put out for our Americana home.

But that got me thinking. With so many rooms in this country house, I’m going to need a lot more Christmas decor than I’ve got. And here I was thinking I had too much at the old house! Well, time to start putting together some ideas for Christmas decor so I can have that ready to put up in the late fall.

I’ve always wanted to do a garden inspired tree and I think this year, I’m going to do just that! I’ll probably put it out in the entry way or maybe even out on the back porch that is covered in screened in. I decided I’d try and make my own ornaments/decorations for some of my tree ideas.

If you’d like to see how I made these, head on over to my YouTube channel and watch the quickie video to see how these came together. Pretty quick and easy, if you ask me! Just find some free printables online (mine I found at Pinterest but also have them available for you here) or check out what people on Etsy have for downloads. I buy a ton of stuff off of Etsy for printables!

And what’s great about this little art project is you don’t need a ton of supplies. I just used the printables, some paperboard (from a recycled cereal box), scrapbook scraps, jute twine, a hole punch, a black stamp pad (to make these look aged) and some Stickles for bling. Of course, you’ll also need a glue stick, but who doesn’t have a million of those!

Now I’ll have to take a look around at some local shops to see if I can find some miniature garden tools to add to the tree that I’d like to put up this Christmas. I’m super duper excited to see how it turns out when the time gets closer! I’ll probably start decorating the day after Thanksgiving!

Have a wonderfully creative day!

Video Premiere! New DIY Garden Inspired Christmas Ornaments!

Announcements, Christmas & Holiday, Create with Me Projects, Mixed Media Projects, YouTube VideosJill AdamyComment

On Thursday at 12PM on my YouTube channel, I’ll be premiering a DIY video to show you how I made the most adorable vintage inspired flower seed packet ornaments for a garden themed tree I’m planning on putting up this Christmas. Super easy with stuff you probably already have lying around your art room.

Join me at 12 and check it out!

Happy Fourth of July! Here's How We Decorated!

Our Country Home, PersonalJill Adamy

Sadly, I don’t have a ton of 4th of July or Americana decorations to put up. Our old house was more of a contemporary colonial with a very open floor plan and not a ton of personality so just the bare minimum of decorations worked. But this house is a completely different story. It’s full of charm and character and I’m off to the races decorating it in the farmhouse theme.

As I retrieved the box with the 4th of July decorations in it, I realized that I really don’t have that much to decorate with. Well, (note to self) that will have to change! But for now, I worked with what I had and also made a banner for the mantle out of card stock and and image I printed off the internet (I just needed to distress it a little bit).

I’m happy with how everything turned out but now I know I have to stock up on more stuff for next year in order to make it a truly Americana 4th of July!

Since this is our first year in our new town, we’ve never celebrated a fourth of July here and weren’t sure what to expect. My girls were to participate on the Softball Rocks parade float so we got them to their drop off point and then staked claim to a nice shady spot in the downtown common to watch for the parade. Not sure what to expect, we didn’t think it’d be a huge parade so my 83 year old mom sat with us in what was turning out to be a pretty hot day!

Much to our surprise and total happiness (as if we could love this town more!), the parade was absolutely adorable and fantastic. All the town committees and groups as well as a bevy of old antique cars, farm stand floats, emergency personnel vehicles and candy being tossed from all the participants (which made for a very excited little boy of mine!) were so much fun to watch. And to top it off, my little ladies loved being on their softball float with their teammates and coaches, singing to lots of tunes as the live band of dads played on from their stage on board the float. Adorable! Fun! And totally small town America. What a town! My husband and I just sat there watching it all like two idiots with dopey happy grins on our faces. Neither of us can believe what a wonderful little town this is to live in, raise kids in and enjoy life in. It’s just full of such nice, friendly and family-oriented families that want to enjoy their kid’s childhoods like we do our own. It’s like we’ve all got the same ideals and morals towards how we want our kids to grow up. It’s wholesome. It’s quaint. And it felt like home from day one.