Traveling Around and Kicking Rocks

This year’s vacation is getting close! We are heading out in early October, and I have not been getting the excitement I’ve had in years past. I think part of that is the unknown quality of where I am going (Australia and New Zealand) and that I did the initial planning months ago and really haven’t done much since.

This week’s Diva Challenge (#331) by guest blogger Jane Reiter made me start really thinking of it, in terms of the unique geological make up of all the places you can travel to. She has us tangle patterns similar to the Petoskey Stone in Michigan. Now, I love me some pretty rocks, and these are particularly cool, in their patterns. While they are mostly hexagonal, I took a more free-form approach. I found one of my tiles I had painted in a class, with Twinkling H2O watercolors and alcohol. It was one of those tiles that I wondered if I would ever use, because of the pattern on it. But for this, it seemed to work perfectly (and again, as usual, I forgot to take a picture of it BEFORE I started tangling on it.)

IMG_5412

This one is on hot press watercolor paper. I decided to have a go with the Pentel Hybrid Technica 04, a gel roller pen with some nice pigmented ink. We all know that Microns and other fiber tipped pens are notorious for clogging up whilst tangling over watercolors and other paints, and I have found this to be a great substitute. They come in several nib sizes (03, 04, 05, 06) and the ink is nice and black.


And of course, I have started my “art supply” packing for the trip. Now, I am pretty famous for OVER packing art supplies when we go on vacation. I usually take WAY too much and end up doing nothing. Last year, I even made a scrap book to work on “on the go” so that it would be finished when we got home. (And to confess, I did the first 3 days, and didn’t touch it again. It is still sitting at the shop, wanting attention. It is a beautiful book. It is on my list of project UFOs.)

So this year, I took a harder look. I travel, for whatever amount of time we go, with a small backpack (PacSafe) and a small suitcase (ebags) that fits in even foreign carrier’s overhead bins. I always plan on doing laundry if we are going to be gone longer than a week (and honestly, a charming part of the trip last year was doing laundry in Venice at a laundry mat with American washers.)

And that brings me to the scaled down version of what goes in the backpack. I have an iPad Pro. It is huge, but it keeps me connected (especially to you guys!) while I am out, but has a pretty large footprint. It took me a while to find a backpack that it fit in, without being a huge backpack. Here is the backpack, with all the things that go inside (minus the giant iPad.)

IMG_5413

On the left: I’ve recently started keeping a Bullet Journal instead of a planner, and that is the center of my focus for what I need to successfully plan and record events while we travel.

IMG_5411

And of course, I need to tangle. (Note that I said need. Not want, not should. It helps me sleep and keeps my head on straight.) The purple pen is an Uni Jetstream 4 color with a pencil. Easy access for just jotting notes and not having to dig into…

On the right: my Kipling Nolan Pencil Case. It has plenty of room for all the pens and tangle supplies I also need, as well as a couple zipper pouches inside to hold tiles and smaller things.

 

I can get a LOT in there and it doesn’t take up much room.

IMG_5417

Starting at the top: Mini Travel Stickie Notes from Daiso (the Japanese $1.50 store but you can order online in bulk,) a couple blending stumps, eraser, and extra 2mm leads for my 2B holder (Daiso!) Stuff to tangle on and a couple of my most loved flat templates and a ruler that can also be used as compasses. 2B lead holder (Daiso), White UM153 Gel Pen, Pentel Hybrid Technica 05, Tombow Mono Drawing Pens in 01, 03, and 05, Ooly 6 color Gel Pen (found this one at The Container Store,) Pentel Multi 8-color Color pencil, Factis eraser, and a spray bottle with SpectraFix Fixative. I also have a small card case with ATC blanks, pre-stamped with my information on the back to leave as abandoned art (not shown.)

After I evaluated what was in there, and what I had to tangle on in the bag, I added a few more white and tan tiles, and these (how on earth could I forget a Stardust Glitter Pen and Gold Gelly Roll, much less a white and indigo Chalk Pastel Pencil!?!?) And that also meant I needed to add a sharpener, so I found the smallest one I could (without going shopping.)

IMG_5419

So after repacking, this is what the front and back flap look like:

It is a little fuller, but I think more complete.

I also have need of something different to work on, so I packed a wool appliqué project that I am in the middle of. It is compact, and fits in my cute skellie zipper pouch.

IMG_5422

The needlework kit is an Altoids tin that I did many years ago, with preemie scissors (airline safe.) Those were ginger Altoids. Handy to have if I need to do any repairs on the road, but I also have a small travel sewing kit for that.

IMG_5423

Speaking of scissors, some of the wool things still need to be cut out, and I need sharp scissors, but I don’t want TSA to take them. I purchased these Gingher’s after 9/11, and have been successfully traveling with them since. Rounded ends and short blades keep TSA happy, and sharp enough to shave with keeps me happy.

IMG_5424

So I have plenty to do, and plenty of room for everything! And, it isn’t all that heavy until I put the monster iPad in it.

IMG_5425

So, I hope this little look into my packing schema helps you on your next trip. Pack light and have fun!


While I was puttering around the shop/studio this week, I took some time to play!

I spent some time making a new swatch for the Iridescent FineTec Palette. All three of the specialty FineTech palettes (6 color Pearlescent Gold, 12 color Pearlescent, and this one) are back in stock at the shop now. This looks SO cool on black paper!

IMG_5399

And I was playing around with the idea of simplicity this week, too. It is amazing at how gratifying it can be. I wish I had taken more time to shade it with graphite instead of Fabrico Marker.

IMG_5390

What week would be complete without a little sacred geometry and Spirograph?

IMG_5408


And now, more than ever, it is important to stop and spend quality time with the ones you love! And when the Giants WIN, that quality time is even better!

IMG_5410

Even my plant is happy this week (the continuing saga of the African Violet that took 5 years to bloom.)

IMG_5392

Peace, love, and prayers for receding water in Texas. 

11 thoughts on “Traveling Around and Kicking Rocks

  1. Love your Diva challenge offering. What great shadows on the “simple” pattern. And, thanks for the new pen suggestion. (I always overpack when it comes to any kind of crafting on vacation … I always have such great intentions, but “vacation” seems to get in the way.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Very nice Petoskey Stone inspired tile. Thank you for the tip about the Pentel Hybrid gel pens. I get very frustrated ruining micron pens when I try to use them over water color painted paper.

    Thank you also for sharing your packing tips. I have the clothes part down. No matter the length of a trip—1 week or 4 weeks, I only take a 20 inch roller bag. Packing art supplies is another issue. I way over pack. Those go in my back pack with my lap top which gets very heavy.

    I’d love to learn more about how you use your bullet journal—maybe when you write about next week’s challenge. 😉

    I’m sure you’ll enjoy your trip to Australia and New Zealand once you get there. As you know, the Pacific Ocean makes the Atlantic look like a puddle. One time we left from Philly and flew west, and one time we had to go to Zurich first, so we went the other way via Dubai. We were going to Western Australia (Perth) that time, so it made some sense. If you have any questions, I’d be happy to share our experiences. One of the best things we’ve ever done on a trip was the 4 day hike we did on the Milford Track in Fiordland National Park on the South Island of New Zealand, ending at Milford Sound. Even though it was in 2002, I have a blog post about it if you’re interested. http://www.boomeresque.com/the-finest-walk-in-the-world-the-milford-track-south-island-new-zealand/

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Really well organised and make sure you have room on your phone or cards for your camera – because both Australia and New Zealand are really picturesque. Not sure where you are visiting but it won’t matter – everything is gorgeous. And I’m not biased just because I’m an Aussie!!!! Have a wonderful trip.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love your tile! It’s beautiful.

    Thank you for sharing your travel kit! Part of the allure of zentangle for me is the relative portability. I’m always interested to see how people transport their “kits” and what is in them! Thanks again for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s