Monday, March 23, 2009

New Painting "Paradise"

"Paradise" is a 12" x 12" watercolor on Aquabord. I was going for the luminous tropical colors here.

I am working on paintings for a show that is scheduled for August, 2009 at Elliott Fouts Gallery in Sacramento. This one will be in that show.

Megan Delehanty climbs Everest again

My husband's sister, Megan Delehanty is leaving Wednesday to climb Everest with a group being filmed by a television crew from the Discovery Channel. She has climbed mountains all over the world and is a professional photographer so her blog and website are filled with incredible photographs. Here is the link to her blog

Megan will have her laptop with her and be blogging from Everest, and you won't want to miss her posts and photos. Here is the link to her blog, I encourage you to subscribe so you will automatically get an email when she adds a new post.

Check out the middle school math class Everest reports she just posted, so cute!

All of us in the Delehanty clan are very proud of Megan, and of course concerned for her safety. And yes, she is as small as she looks; but super fit, very experienced and very smart. That is what makes for a good safe climber. We will be watching for posts on her blog, and hope you will too.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Now is the time to go

As readers of this blog know, I love to travel and paint all over the world. I have been teaching one or two small group painting trips each year since around 2003 and have been privileged to travel with the most wonderful people on these trips. This year I have a trip to Belgium scheduled for September 5 - 12, 2009 and a trip to Santorini Greece scheduled for September 26 - October 3, 2009.

Many of you have said I really want to go to Belgium or I really want to go on your Santorini trip but......... the economy has me worried, I am afraid to spend the money, I need to watch my savings, etc. etc. and then adding, "I'll wait and see". Well I now must report to those of you that were "waiting and seeing" before getting your deposit in on the Belgium trip, that you have waited too long. The trip is now full.

Before this happens to those of you thinking about the Santorini trip, I suggest you get your deposits in to Patrick at ToscanaAmericana. Click here to go to the information about my trip and how to enroll on the ToscanaAmericana website.

And by the way did you see the Sacramento Bee article today "Take a Vacation Without Breaking the Bank". "Thanks to airfares at obscene lows, half-empty hotels and a surging dollar, now is a good time to book a vacation, provided you can afford it. " The article goes on to give some great advise on traveling within your budget including listing my two favorite travel websites and which compare flights with fees and taxes included. Here's a few of my travel on a budget tips from me:

Frequent flyer miles: I use a business credit card for all my business expenses that earns me airline miles. I keep track of expenses using the online and phone tracking system so I never charge more than I can pay off at the end of each month and thus; never pay interest. I do have to pay an annual fee, but I think an $80 fee in exchange for an airline ticket that would cost me $1,400. is a good deal! We use another airline miles card for our personal expenses so we are collecting miles on two airlines at once. Look for frequent flyer accounts that let you buy miles if you are short the total miles needed. By collecting miles on our two cards with separate airlines I have been earning one free overseas flight almost every year since 2001.

Rick Steves guide books are the best and worth their weight in my back pack ALWAYS! I like to add a little personal exploration and painting time prior to my workshops I teach and that's when I depend on Rick Steve's guide books. A couple of examples of good finds in these guide books: A wonderful little hotel in Paris, and a tiny little place near Saint Marks Square that was actually very affordable in otherwise expensive Venice! His restaurant recommendations are always good, and without his book I would never have figured out how to read the Italian train departure chart in time to catch my train in Milano.

Europe's trains are fabulous, get me everywhere I want to go. But if I am in a hurry I can find really inexpensive flights on little commuter airlines like Ryan Air and Air One. Find them on

Stand up meals in a deli are much cheaper than sit down meals in a restaurant and the food can be just as great!

I spent $75. a night for the AARP price for a room in my chosen motel in Santa Fe a couple of weeks ago even though the motel told me their lowest price was with an AARP card and it was $89. a night. I called the motel first and got their price. Then I went on and entered the name of the hotel in the search box and my dates. Kayak told me I could get the room with my AARP card for $75. if I booked it through Expedia. I booked through Expedia, but confirmed my reservation by calling the motel directly to make sure Expedia did not mess up.

I don't like bus tours with loads of people that move you from one place to the next so you are always moving and never resting. I also prefer tours that are all inclusive so my bill is paid before I leave the states. So my painting trips are small group trips, and we stay in one place the whole time. You know what the trip costs because my trips are all inclusive accept airfare, that way those with frequent flyer miles can fly free.

Oh and always always, take out travel insurance to cover the cost of your entire trip and emergency medical as you just never know.

So as the Sacramento Bee article says, if you can afford to travel, this is a great year to go.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Creating Watercolor Memories of Santorini

Patrick sent me this postcard from Santorini when he was there planning his 2009 workshops.
What a fabulous location for a Watercolor Workshop!
My workshop "Creating Watercolor Memories of Santorini" is coming up soon, September 26 - October 3. There is space available at the moment and if you move fast you can join us.
ToscanaAmericana Workshops are all inclusive, lodging, meals, workshop instruction, etc, making the price of $2,749. per person double occupancy or $2,849.00 single occupancy a great bargain. Combine that with frequent flyer miles, or bargain hunt on the air fare comparison website and find a discounted flight and you are set for a dream come true painting trip. All the details can be found on the ToscanaAmericana website, here is the link
To check out my travel paintings and travel journal go to my website

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Create Watercolor Memories of Belgium

I have just learned that there are only two spaces left for the painting trip to Belgium this September where I will be teaching my students to create watercolor paintings like the one above.

This is a small group painting trip, just 7 students, Jackie (our guide) and me. The tour company is French Escapade, and this will be my third trip with this wonderful tour company. When you travel with French Escapade you are more of a "guest" than a "tourist" because you really soak up the culture, and eat yummy food as well as have plenty of time to paint and relax. We travel about in our van (not a huge bus with 25 people!) and we always have a ball.

The trip is scheduled for September 5 - 12, 2009, includes just about everything accept airfare for a price of $2,890. per person double occupancy. Please see the French Escapade website for complete details.

Now here is a photo of Belgium just to make you dream....