Skip to main content

Home sweet home~snippets from the New Year!


Happy New Year sweet friends!

May it be a year of wonder and possibility for you,

Much laughter and love

and an abundance of serendipitous moments,

lush happenings

and peace in each present moment :)

 My word for 2013 is CLARITY

I know that many of you can relate.....
as creative souls with a multitude of ideas
all shooting off in different directions at once
a tendency to work on many things at the same time
and then to succumb to moments of overwhelm


I know I'm not alone in this!


it is

for me this means working on 

simplifying my world,



setting up systems

to make things flow more easily

and so it is.....

We started the year with some reassessing of things. 
a realization that for many reasons music would take a backseat for a while.
So out to the recording studio we went for a makeover and now thanks to Airbnb we are able to rent it out for those who want to come visit  beautiful Jervis Bay!


 Studio Cantamar!

Over the years our family has moved out to the studio several times (including this year for 17 days over January) to rent out our home for the Summer.
Not for everyone I know, but for us it has been a strategy to get ahead a little financially and our experiences have always been positive.
More often than not we end up being invited back into our own home for dinner and vino and this year was no exception when this beautiful family came to stay! 

 i gave this very talented girl an impromptu art class

 in which she painted this stunning masterpiece. Well done Miss Ruby! You are an an artist in the making for sure!

Our home always seems to attract lovely people!. By doing up the recording studio as a little B&B we get to stay in our own house and still meet awesome people.

When the studio is not being rented we have been taking in Couchsurfers and this has also been a fab experience with three lovely German travellers joining us for Christmas festivities!

and speaking of Christmas look what Santa (aka Marco) bought me!
I am in love with my new bike and have been whizzing along the bike path by the beach like a teenager!

I also spent the last part of 2012 and beginning of 2013 getting a book proposal together for North Light so please keep your fingers crossed for me. I should know something by next week. I think I'm supposed to keep it a secret so "shhhh! Don't tell anyone!"

 There's always a furry helper around in our home! :) Gingy thinks he has something to say in my proposed book!

Of course after 5 1/2 months away from mi amor we are enjoying some romantic, chillaxing time together...

 and I've been doing a fair bit of this

 and of course some of that!

 and just before you get too relaxed we've had some of the hottest days on record this Summer so you can imagine my surprise when I opened the fridge one morning to find this little (actually rather large!) creature hiding out inside the door!!!!!

 One gorgeous day Santana asked if I would give her a mini workshop so she could paint something to hang in her new home ( she just moved out for the 2nd time yesterday to start University in Wollongong).
She's always been a little unsure about her painting skills so I was over the moon to spend this time with her....we both started with some words that had meaning for us, mine from a Morcheeba song "The Sea".
  and then we dripped and sploshed and layered
 she hasn't quite finished hers yet

 but we both had a lot of fun

 and I think she overcame some of that "paint" anxiety! :) Don't you?

Night Dive. Tracy Verdugo. 2013. acrylic/ink on canvas. 3'x4' (91x121cm). $2500

 Mine ended up as a memory of a late night dive on the Great Barrier Reef many, many moons ago! and yes the colours underwater really were that intense!

Elefante. Tracy Verdugo. acrylic/ink on canvas.18x13cm. $100

I've also been having fun continuing on with my Little Creatures series and am excited to be teaching a workshop on how to paint your own whimsical animals at the fantabulous Art Is You retreat in Petaluma California this September. Registration opens Feb 1st. Would love to see you there!

 Once all of our guests had left and we were back in our home it was time to unpack and declutter. After years of having our furniture one way I decided to rearrange the sun room to make this inviting little nook. At first I used an embroidered Mexican thrift store dress as a table runner...
 but then I found this adorable hand embroidered perfect sized tablecloth at a garage sale for $2!! 
Now that made my weekend!

 I'm also super excited to be taking this class online from the ever so talented Misty Mawn
I drew this image from her week 1 assignments and am just loving the class and absolutely recommend it! 
Misty just returned from teaching in Orvieto, Italy and posted the most delish photos on her blog...


guess what?

I have just confirmed dates to teach in Orvieto as well

Sept 20-26, 2015. 

Now that's plenty of time to start saving your pennies. Who wants to join me? :)))

 Finishing up the month grateful for all that is and stopping to notice the beauty all around me.
 A chance glimpse of these beautiful pink and grey galahs through the guest bedroom window had me running for my camera and crawling across the floor commando style before sneakily slithering up onto the bed and stretching my arm skywards to take this shot. (the things I do in order to share my life with you! ;p )

After this I felt inspired to paint some feathered friends so in one awesome day ( between interruptions "mum, you're supposed to be helping me pack!", mum, where's that form I need to hand in first day of school? "Honey, any chance of some lunch?", "Hi dad, no not busy at all. Would you like a cuppa?"
 I painted this birdy...*note my attempt to subdue my palette

 then this one....* note I cant help myself, the colour is back!

and lastly this one with his big ol' claw and missing tail (in my attempt to get really loose I forgot the tail ok!) For all his flaws I might like him the best! :)

 and after I'd had enough of birds I started on some fish 

and more underwater memories
 and then yesterday it was time to say goodbye to Santana for a second time. After a few months of living in Sydney she had come home for the Summer. 

It has been sooooooooooo amazingly wonderful having our whole family together for a couple for months but now its time for her to move onto the next chapter. 
Having been accepted into Wollongong uni she and two friends I adore have found a little cottage together and yesterday the dads rented this truck and moved them all in.

 I truly thought I was okay this time until I lay in bed last night and thought about her empty room and cried silently for a while against Marcos shoulder. 
Its hard isn't it?

 Then this morning she sent me pics of her room, already put together so stylishly.....

 and this blackboard that she made last week from an old piece of ply and a broken easel I was going to take to the tip. 
On it she and Rosie have written their first quote to welcome friends to their home and remind them of the important things

The true meaning of life

is to plant trees

under whose shade

you do not expect to sit 

~ Nelson Henderson

Wowza! This poignant thought from two 19 year old girls just starting their adventures!
Makes me feel like as parents we've done a pretty good job :)

Makes me kinda want to cry again too
in a good way.......

Until next time
i leave you with this thought

may you set sail with your dreams this year
 or at least go for a little paddle somewhere you haven't been before

lots of love Tracy xoxo

ps don't forget today is your last chance to leave a comment on my 2012 recap post ( the one before this one) to win an original painting. I'm drawing the lucky winner tomorrow!!!! :))) Good luck all!!


Cathy Hetzel said…
I love reading your blog...there is so much going on in your's so creative, colourful and inspiring.......
Jenny said…
MY!MY! You have done so much in such a short time and its only the first month of the year,you have so much energy and creativity,you really are an amazing person.
Lori said…
Can't help but keep coming back to your website. Wish I had found your site while you were in the US. Any chance you'll travel back and to the Boulder/Denver, CO area? Would love to take a class from you! Also, enjoyed your music; you're so talented!
Susan Burgess said…
Love your paintings always so inspiring! Would love to own one someday!~ Your daughter has wonderful talent too! Hugs, Sanna
Unknown said…
Clarity, a very good word, and for you especially, Tracy, because you do have a lot going on! My word is Patience.
Love the water paintings the most!
She Who Doodles said…
i enjoyed reading your post and seeing your work. what and interesting life you lead. and wow, the opportunity to teach in Italy.
Ro Bruhn said…
Wow what a fabulous post Tracy. Your home looks beautiful. I love the direction your paintings are taking, they're delightful. It's always sad when the family spreads their wings, but it's also rewarding too, knowing you've taught them how to.
Jacqlyn said…
Love your work! Wish I could take a class!
Unknown said…

a tiny little tear sparked up at the empty room...
again your blog made me emotional! haha

beautiful sharing,

and i love how you share your home! that's gorgeous..