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My go-to Art Supplies

Alrighty… here it is! A little while ago I did a poll on Instagram to see if people would like to know my favourite supplies. The vote was yes so here is that blog post long overdue!

Note: any links are not affiliate links. I am not associated with the brands nor do I represent them. Just sharing what I love to use!

Calligraphy & Lettering Pens

Tombow Fudenosuke Calligraphy Pens

Hands down my #1 favourite lettering pen and go-to for every card! These pens come in a hard tip and soft tip. My first preference is the hard tip which is easier to use as a beginner, but both are relatively easy to control and the hard tip pens also come in 10 vibrant colours now!

Like I mentioned, I use them on cards for the calligraphy and sometimes to outline designs, as well. They are also my favourite for addressing envelopes since they have waterproof ink (can’t stop me now Rain-couver!).

PROS

  • Waterproof ink
  • 10 Colour options
  • easy to control

CON

  • That you have to replace it eventually?

Tombow Dual Brush Pens

These brush pens are a lot thicker and bigger than the Fudenosuke pens and they are water-based which means they’re not permanent but can be used for some pretty watercolour designs!

I use them most for miscellaneous projects like notebooks customizations, quick cards and various lettering projects!

PROS

  • Amazing Colours
  • So Many options for blending colours!

CON

  • a bit pricey (cheaper at Michael’s with a coupon than on Amazon)

Fine Tip Pens

I have gone through a lot of fine tip pens… the Sakura Micron, Zebra Sarasa, Muji gel pens, Staedtler fine liners, Stabilo fine liners, and many others. I loved them all about the same but the one thing that drives me crazy is how the tip becomes a little bit thicker as you write (just gonna happen). But the one I found the last the longest is the Sakura Micron PN (plastic nib). I only really use the black but if you’re looking for nice colours, the zebra sarasa have a wide selection (as well as staedtler triples fine liners and stabilo fine liners).

Watercolour Supplies

Angora Water Colors

I tried a couple different sets and also some random tube paints I found at Homesense. But this one was easily my favourite! The texture was smooth, colours were beautiful (and also mixed nice colours), and it is super portable! This one was given to me as a gift and it has been well worn. Only thing I can’t recommend is the best place to buy it.

Daniel Smith Watercolors

When I was ready to invest in a high quality set of watercolors, I found Daniel Smith to have consistently high reviews! I have not personally experienced comparison with other high end paints but I don’t regret this purchase. The colours are vibrant, the set is gorgeous and even when dry, the paint goes on smoothly. I really enjoyed picking out the colours I wanted in my palette and the carrier is super portable and classy!

Paper

I haven’t really tried a lot of papers but having watercolour paper as opposed to normal cardstock is very important! I’ve been satisfied with the Canson Watercolor paper pads that you can find at any art store. I usually purchase mine at Michaels with a coupon.

Brushes

I’ve used the Michaels brand “Artist’s Loft” brushes and these have been very reliable. But I also use Princeton brushes. I found some at Hobby Lobby and purchased my most recent set through Opus. No complaints, I’ve found both reliable depending on your price range!

Markers

Sharpie Oil-based Pens

For anything permanent, the Sharpie oil-based markers have been my favourite. I’ve used them in various projects such as decorating Christmas ornaments, decorating my Bible or even my laptop. Just keep in mind they will come off non-porous surfaces with rubbing alcohol (or hand sanitizer) so if you need it to hold up to lots of hand contact then you may want to test it before committing. But I love how the tips come in various sizes; even super fine! I usually purchase this one at Michaels with a coupon as Amazon can have surprisingly high costs sometimes.

Kassa Chalk Pens

The best chalk markers when you need erasable! For non-permanent designs, these are my first choice. They come in various colours and two sizes of pen tip. These i purchase through Amazon. Also, they’re a small business!

If you have questions feel free to comment or reach out to me! I’d love to help you get creative!

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Tips for Home Productivity

So, yes… everyone has been posting to their social media a little extra these days. Some people share news and updates while others share what they’re doing at home. Those who like productivity have also been sharing their ideas for how to stay productive at home which can be super helpful! Since I’ve had a full day at home once a week throughout most of my undergraduate degree, I’ve tested out a few of my favourite tips. It’s also been super beneficial to see all the new ones coming out. I thought I’d share some of my personal favourites in case you’re also needing extra doses of motivation and are looking for every bit of help while staying at home!

1. Set Weekly Goals

As a student you always have assignments, quizzes and exams to study for so weekly goals are easy to set. But even when I’m not doing my schoolwork, it’s nice to have something to work towards at the end of the week and to know that there’s a goal at the end.

2. Plan Your Week at the Start

Plan out your entire week… or at least take a look ahead! This one I’ve done ever since I started university. Usually on Sunday night I’ll take a look and make sure I realize what needs to be completed this week (and sometimes what I need to get a head start on for the following week). This goes hand in hand with setting weekly goals.

3. Set Daily Goals

Yes, even if you have goals for the week, you’ll probably end up trying to cram them all in at the end of the week (if you’re anything like me). And sometimes things need to be done midweek. As you look at your week, set some major daily goals.

4. Plan Out Your Day the Night Before

No, I don’t always do this one. I’d like to think I’m not THAT much of a planner… When the rest of my family is home alongside of me, I have to allow for more flexibility to be able to join their activities. Allow yourself some grace! But I have found this tip to be extremely helpful when I have a busy day and lots of things that must be finished before the end of that day. If I’ve set myself a deadline then I know I have no time to dilly dally in between or procrastinate on that assignment.

5. Start the Day with Jesus

Best tip I’ve EVER integrated into my schedule. First, understand I have NEVER been perfect at keeping my daily “quiet times” and I know that God is not looking for me to sit there reading my Bible just to check it off the list. While I have never done this near as well as I would like to, spending time with Jesus before I do anything else helps me approach the day with peace and confidence because I have had a chance to realign my thoughts on Him. Yes, there are many times I’m distracted by what I need to do next, but I thank God that He is gracious to still meet with me in those moments.

6. Stay Off Social Media Until 11 AM

The time is somewhat arbitrary but it’s usually when I’ve lost my initial wind of productivity and give myself a break. Often I try to apply this to staying off my phone for the entire morning but… I usually fail at that one. Convincing myself to at least stay off social media until later in the day is much more doable and makes all the difference!

I also manage multiple social media accounts, so staying off and planning those tasks for later helps me not get distracted and waste my time scrolling!

7. Be Realistic

Sometimes I set lofty goals. Then I get disappointed because I didn’t complete them. I have found it much more helpful to be realistic as I set my goals, knowing my limits and planning accordingly. If I happen to complete more and get ahead, then it feels even better!

8. Be Gracious

You may have noticed that a lot of these have to do with scheduling and planning. Ask any of my friends or family and you’ll know I’m a hardcore planner. But something I’ve come to realize is that spontaneous and unplanned moments can make the best memories. Be gracious with yourself when you don’t stick to the plan. Leave some wiggle room in your schedule for flexibility and interruptions.

There you have it. Some of my favourite things to do when I need to get stuff done. If you’re looking for more ideas here are two extra articles I’ve found insightful!

  1. My friend Victoria has been doing the home productivity thing since forever: https://victoriawiebe.com/home/5-tips-for-working-from-home
  2. The Gospel Coalition has 9 more tips too! https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/work-efficiently-home/

Also if you want some FREE printables to help you plan, you can find them under shop > downloads!

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My Greatest Dilemma Solved

What is the greatest dilemma that I’ve ever had? At first thought, maybe it was the time when I showed up to class and had to write a midterm I wasn’t prepared for because I thought it was meant to be the week after. Or maybe it was every time I had to decide what to do with my summers. But with time and new perspective, I have realized that my greatest, most detrimental dilemma was that, as a sinner, I was separated from God.

Yes, I am a sinner. I am not perfect and I fall so short of God’s perfection. On my own, I can’t have a relationship with God and be spared from the eternal death he says I deserve. I can’t hide myself from His wrath against sin. I can’t earn my own salvation.

But how was this dilemma solved? God. Because He is love, He intervened. He made a way for me to be with Him forever. He sent His only son, Jesus, to take the punishment of death for me. He emptied Himself and took on the cross.

“… [Christ Jesus], though he was he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” -Philippians 2:6-8

Because He is the one who took it upon himself, I can now be free. I believe and am saved from condemnation. I have put my faith in Him and that his grace is the only reason I can now have a relationship with God.

“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” – Romans 5:1

I am saved from eternal death and condemnation. I can now be with God forever and have a personal relationship with Him. He no longer sees me as the sinner who falls short of the perfect standard, but he sees me labelled with Jesus’ righteousness. My greatest dilemma has been solved through the cross.

I fully believe that my greatest dilemma has been solved because of what Jesus did on the cross. God has made a way for me to know Him. And I am fully known and fully loved by Him. I can have full joy in knowing that no other problems will compare to the one already taken care of. There’s hope in more than just the now. There is an eternity to spend with the God who so deeply loves me and will make all things right. Nothing on this earth will compare to the glory of being with Him forever. Nothing on this earth will be as detrimental as my sin that separated me from God. But He is good and He is faithful. He has made a way for me to know Him. And nothing will ever be able to separate me from His love. No mistake I make, no bad choice I make and no exam I may fail can separate me from His love. So, I can be still and rejoice.

“Yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation.” – Habakkuk 3:18

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The Power of a Prayer Meeting

I’ll be honest, prayer meetings were the last thing I would schedule time for in my semesters. As a student leader for my campus ministry, life just seemed so full. Whether I was involved in other club activities and events or not, the prayer meeting always seems to be the last meeting I prioritized. If I had extra time, I’d consider going, and if I could be studying, it was the first thing I dropped from the possibilities. I don’t think I’m alone in this. But recently since pulling back from other scheduled events, I have made the time to attend prayer meetings and found it SO worthwhile. Here’s why I think these meetings have become a highlight of my week and are important to make time for!

 

1. Join Other Christians in Seeking God Together

There’s something powerful when 2 or 3 come together in His name. You can seek God individually (and ain’t that important) but it’s special when you join other Christians in seeking God together.

 

“For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.” – Matthew 18:20

 

As students, our heart for our campus should be to see revival and the lost get saved. Praying for your campus with other Christians who want to see their classmates be saved is powerful! There’s unity and joy that comes from it. I have personally been so encouraged every time I see Christians come together at my school for worship or prayer because I can see how many people are also following Jesus in a secular environment.

 

2. Cast Your Anxieties on God

God cares for us and wants to bear our burdens. We weren’t meant to bear them on our own. When things or troubles are on our hearts, the best place to take them is to God. Sure, sometimes it isn’t best to bring it up in front of other people but sometimes they can come alongside us with these things. Whether or not our worries are spoken, coming to pray with others is a good reminder to also bring our anxieties to God because He cares for us.

 

“… casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you.” – 1 Peter 5:7

 

3. Take a Moment to Remind Yourself of God’s Goodness

In the midst of bringing miseries and troubles to God, prayer is a perfect opportunity to remind ourselves and be thankful for God’s goodness. What a privilege it is to be able to come to God with free access. Prayer is a direct line to talk to God which is only because of what He has done for us. He has given us salvation.

 

And when we bring our requests to God, He has a plan no matter what happens or how long it takes. He hears us and answers us even if it wasn’t what we expected. We can learn to have this posture from Daniel’s friends Shadrach, Meshach, and Abendago who were about to be thrown into the fiery furnace for the sake of their faith.

 

“If this be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.” – Daniel 3:17-18

 

This verse is often paraphrased as “but if not, He is still good.” There is so much to be learned from these guys that trusted God knew best. They knew God was capable to deliver them but trusted that even if God chose not to deliver them, God had a better plan.

 

For me, every time we pray for revival and for healing, I know God is capable. But when I don’t see my friends have an immediate change of heart, I know I don’t need to be discouraged. Or if I face troubles for the sake of Christ, I know He has purpose in it. God knows best and He still hears us. He has a bigger heart for my friends and my campus than I ever could. God is still so good no matter what.

 

4. Practice Humility and Dependence on God

I’d say this point has been the biggest lesson in my life lately. Humility means acknowledging that God is my Creator and I am dependent on Him. Coming to Him in prayer means I’m admitting that I need Him. Prayer doesn’t always need to change others, but it changes me and realigns my focus onto God.

 

“If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” – 2 Chronicles 7:14

 

I’m all for the fellowship and taking on leadership to plan events for fellow students. God truly taught me valuable lessons through that season of my life. But I’ve come to realize that we also so easily forget to depend on Him instead of ourselves and this is one way I’ve found helpful to practice that.

 

I realize not everyone will be in the same boat. Maybe you don’t attend school and have the opportunity of praying with other Christians at school. Or maybe you just don’t know about any prayer meetings happening at your Church. So, how do you keep yourself from depending on your own strength?

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Room Redo

My family moved into a new house over the summer while I was at camp. So while I missed out on moving all the boxes, I definitely had my own mess to come home to. Unpacking boxes, trying to find things I didn’t pack… the plus side to this move was that I finally got to try a bit of home design. After many years of having the same bedding and room layout, the room I’m now in called for a new plan!

 

I embraced my love for pink and combined it with the trend. What isn’t offered in a soft pink these days? Every little detail was so much fun to plan! Realizing the challenges of small space and coordinating with pieces I already owned was a fun challenge. And yes, that is my stuffed bunny. I am obsessed with anything soft and I’ve always loved bunnies, so it was a necessary purchase. 😉

 

My favourite find was this little shelf! The ladder shelves are usually really tall; the size of a bookshelf. But I wanted to find one that would fit next to my bedside. Scored on this find at winners!

 

I like to keep things and collect things. So it’s really hard for me to keep my room tidy! I really wanted to minimize the amount of clutter though and have a proper home for everything. So far, I have not kept it perfectly. But when it’s clean, it’s so refreshing!

 

I even found a home for my must-keep nicknacks!

 

And incorporated Bible verses and pictures of friends. Lots of artwork!

 

Along with a place to keep notes and cards that I like to display.

 

Also a part of the cactus and succulent phase…

 

I finally got to display my DIY jewellery project. It was mostly finished a year ago but then I finally put in the hooks for all my necklaces at the bottom. And what do you know, it helps me utilize all my jewellery more.

 

I really loved having the chance to try something creative on a larger scale! Being able to add details and coordinate them all was so much fun! Plus, since I chose to put a chair in my room, I have a spot to relax.

 

There it is! The reason I didn’t socialize before I started school again! (Haha)