Hoarding in the Afterglo

Yes, I am a hoarder. I can finally admit that over many years of fully participating in the hoarding process. I saved bits and bobs of things to make things out of. I had lots of bright, shiny ideas and never followed through with them, resulting in clutter and disarray to the point where I had no workspace left.

I think once I came to grips with the “why” part of my hoarding (that’s a VERY long story) I was ready to deal with it. And deal I did. With the encouragement of a coach, I organized what I wanted to keep, purged what no longer served a purpose, and made a very positive change. Here are a few before and afters:

I replaced the sewing table tops with larger ones, so there is automatically more room there, but since the move around, and purge, the room seems twice as large! And…on top of that, I have been pretty productive!


Since I am basking in the afterglow of having a nice workspace again, it is only right that this week’s Diva Challenge (#344) is a Use My Tangle (UMT) of Afterglo by Carole Ohl, CZT. I have not done this tangle since my very first month tangling, and I did not have fond memories of it. So trying it again (I am still on the white pen kick in my black Venice Journal) I kept an open mind.

Diva #344

I am really learning a lot about shading with this new paradigm of graphite. I think it works really well. And don’t those look like poinsettia?

I also did this one for the Square One Facebook tangle this week, Hypnotic:

Square One - Hypnotic

I’ve also been playing with my Dot Rods™ now that I have space to work. I made this as a peace offering to a friend that I’ve had a falling out with. Don’t tell her though, as I have not yet given it…lol. (I don’t think she reads my blog anyway.)

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I layer them in. Makes it so fun! (Notice the smallest one has a bend in it. An important reminder that they should not be exposed to heat, as I tried to heat shrink that blue tube onto it and it melted a bend. Better to use medical tape to make grips, I think.)

I am cutting and packaging more Dot Rods™ this afternoon, so they should be back in stock in the Online Store tomorrow. I will be out of town from the 13th to the 19th, so if you have orders you want in time for Christmas, they need to be in by the 11th.


A final note on the hoard clearance before I get my rear in gear to go out and work in the garage…I found this completed quilt top, along with the backing and binding fabric in one of the boxes. Circa 1995, the colors are nice, but they just aren’t me anymore. Waffling on whether to donate it or finish it and gift it.  I did such a nice job piecing it!

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And my new “altar” is my favorite part of the room. The lady in the picture is my Grandmother, Ethel Beatrice Kirkham Pyeatt. She always looked and acted like a movie star. She lived quite the life. And the doll is called Gene Marshall, a 1940’s & 50’s movie star, costumed in her role from Shooting Star (imaginary movie.) I used to have over 50 of these dolls in various costumes (another really long story) and sold most of them. I lost the few I had left (another REALLY long story relating to the hoarding issue) and this is the only one I replaced, because she reminds me so much of my Grandmother. She had still been in her box since I received her in 2015!

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Ok…enough from me for the week. Back to work, lots to do! Make Stuff!

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Dude…DEWD!

That’s right. A tangle named Dewd. I had done Dewd previously in my Venice Journal as part of the Project Pack 1 videos:

Project Pack 1 Dewd

He is a cute little Dewd. Diva chose this for this  week’s Challenge (#343) so I felt compelled to do it again. I started on a Black Tile that I had spray dyed with some sparkly substance.

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Then something went horribly wrong when I got the idea to try Trans-zending on it.  With a Purple Moonlight Gelly Roll. What was I thinking?

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Remember kids, not everything turns out like it did in your head.


On a less terrifying note, I have been working my way through Ornament samples for class on the 9th.  I am setting up stations for each ornament, so you can make as many as you like, and skip the ones that you don’t fancy.

Bijou makes a couple appearances on the list this year.

And again as a bell. (Credit Dorian Eng, CZT for this one.)

And a few cut outs that come out cute (There are more shapes too!)

And another one of Dorian Eng’s Designs.

And a little something I whipped up yesterday!

I’m sure I left our a few, but where would the fun be if I revealed everything? Class is on December 9th…come play with me (and take care of that pesky holiday shopping.)


So last week, I was off to the airport, to go to Guatemala. Sometimes, as we saw with my Dewd tile, things don’t always work out. From the time we left the house to the time we got to the gate, the plane filled up, and I didn’t get a seat (oh, the joys of flying stand-by.) So I drove home.

Strangly enough, I did not actually have a Plan B (very unlike me.) I decided to make the best of the “alone time” to start on my major rework of my home studio space. It was starting to not be much of a work space anymore, but more of a hoarders paradise.

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Panoramas make the room look a little creepy. I am currently over half way done, so I’ll show you a little piece for now, so you can monitor my progress.

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I actually had to wait for the trash to get emptied today, and a load out to the shop, so I can finish loading out what is getting tossed, and what is getting donated. I am pretty pleased so far, and have been concentrating on putting things away when I bring them in here, not just piling them on my workbench. It was starting to look like this all the time:

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I am grateful to have this lovely space, but I have not been taking very good care of it.

And, since I hadn’t planned to cook for Thanksgiving, I treated myself to dinner out. I live across the street from a very large Indian Casino (Pechanga) and I made a reservation to eat this:

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It’s a good thing I had other nice stuff for you to look at!

And, I know I promised this a long time ago, but with all the construction going on in our backyard I wasn’t able to get it done until now. Glass Pens. Coolness.

Still learning to edit videos. Still learning to speak English most days.

Have a great week!

Bunzo! Black is the New White!

OMG! I am MEGA impressed with the new white Gelly Roll pens!

So much so, I can’t seem to put them down. I carried that over into this week’s Diva Challenge (#342) for a DuoTangle of Rick’s Paradox and Bunzo. Now, some of you know that I love Bunzo. It is one of my all time favorite pen killers. I can carry on with it for a very long time. BUT…I have never done it with the white pen because, well, the ability to do fill like that just was not there. Until now.

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WOW, right? I worked through a few of the videos from Project Pack 1 and have been so impressed (coupled with last weeks BIG Bales.) I plan on filling up my Venice black journal with this!

I’m so happy with this, I added it to the December class schedule. So come get your Black Zen on with me on December 2nd. Click here to reserve your spot, and we will work through the Project Pack (and you will get all the supplies!)

I also had some paintings to finish this week for submission for the 6×6 4 Peace exhibition for Artists for World Peace, benefitting Native Eyes, providing eye care for Native Americans.

They will be featured in the pop up gallery and online, and will be sold during the event with the proceeds going to Native Eyes. I am really proud to have participated in this!

Hey, and if you really dig the dots, beside to check in with next week’s blog. I have some big news on that front, and something you really need to have!

I’m going to keep it a little short this week, the December schedule is up and I have to catch a plane (Guatemala for Thanksgiving!) I’ll be back on Friday, so I will be able to fill orders then. 

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Go Big…AND Go Home!

Yes…I made it home from Santa Barbara ok. I really am not enjoying driving at night much, and I did miss an exit, but made it out unscathed. But for all that, I would not have wanted to miss out on the classes I taught there. Zentangle 101 with 5 lovely ladies at WorkZones; we were really productive and I love it when they have this much fun!

We had a fun meet up yesterday with the San Diego Zentangle Friendship group, where I gave a short, hands on lesson on Reticula and Fragments. We drew out a few Fragments on small squares, and tried putting them in different configurations. Hiroko did this one with 8 squares and a couple different Fragments.

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Then we explored different Reticula. Denise K. did this sample:

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I started a much larger Reticula to play with Bales with my New White Gelly Roll Pens, some really cool Metallic Pencils, and a Black journal from Bee Paper…and it was BIG. Which played in nicely with this week’s Diva Challenge (#341.) That baby is about 7″ across!

Diva #341

I do have to report that I LOVE the new Gelly Rolls. And those Metallic Pencils from Pentalic are just a dream on darker and black paper. I’m afraid they don’t show up all that well on white paper, but they are chalkier rather than waxier and blend nicely.

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You can purchase all these items at my online shop!

I’ve really been on fire prepping up for your holiday shopping pleasure, too. I have been re-vamping the online store, making it more shopper friendly, one little bit at a time. It does take a lot of time to edit and add photos, but I am tackling a little bit ever day to make this the best place to find everything you need to make your art practice fun and zen-filled!

 

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Wibble Wobble

Well, I am a little behind this week. My usual goal is to have a post up by Tuesday afternoon, but here it is, Thursday.

While I have lots of excuses, none of them are all that valid. 

But, while I was in my meetings today, I tangled, and I present my version of Wibble by Shawna Martin, the Use My Tangle (UMT) for the Diva Challenge (#340.)


The tile was something I found in my box of prepped backgrounds (on a white Zentangle tile. It had a lot of greens and yellows in it, so that leads me to believe it may be a Color Burst by Ken Oliver. I do so many of these sometimes I can’t remember. Whenever I have my paints out for something, I always “sop up” whatever is left with tiles and let them dry. Makes for an interesting challenge, using colors. I did a lot of rounding here, making it pretty graphic looking. Music notes? Interlocking J’s? I dunno…but I like it.

I tend to tangle my way through training sessions so I pay more attention to what is being presented. It helps my brain focus. I have a little pile of started tiles to finish, as well as some blanks and colored backgrounds. This was a partially started tile:


And this one was sprayed with hibiscus tea through a silicone coaster I found at Daiso (Japanese $1.50 store here in California.)


I feel pretty productive when I do this.

I found a cool new toy from one of my art supply wholesalers…a lap desk/easel! It folds up really nicely, and has a drawer to hold all my pens. I can neaten up bu just closing it up! I’m nearly sold out of the first order, but if enough people like them, I will order more.


Click on the Home button to go to the main web site to order them.
I also got the new White Gelly Rolls sets. I have to say I am really impressed with the ink, which I truly believe is reformulated. I am having a much better time doing fill work with them. And check out those awesome metallic pencils. They look marvelous on black paper (and tiles!)

It’s not too early to give your family a wish list for me to fill up for a great Christmas gift! I am always happy to do special orders, and put together custrom packages.

I may have a few kits left for the Fall Tangles after Saturdays’s class. I did a few more samples…check them out!


After posting this, I feel like I’ve been drawing non-stop all week. Gosh!

And thank you to all my fellow Veterans for your service to our great country. And to my civilian friends, than you for your support. Without you, it would be really hard to serve.

Dia de Tuna

What? Oh, that’s right, you all know it as Dia de Muertos or All Saints Day, but around here, we call it Tuna Day. It’s Mike’s birthday (call sign Tuna…remember Maverick from Top Gun?)

So of course, I started doing cards for the man who has everything. He (at least pretends to) like my art, and often gets a chuckle. So I did this one for him, and my Diva Challenge (#339) for Fall/Halloween.

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I mounted it on a plain black card, and practiced my calligraphy skills to write on it and in it. So now you know why I had to wait until today to post this (didn’t want to ruin the surprise!)

I also finished up (on time!) the Inktober Tangles challenge from Stephanie at www.everythingis-art.com. I am pretty pleased that I caught up in time to have a big finish (much to the detriment of my to-do list for the shop.)

I have 2 other projects I need to catch up on, but I will whittle down the to-do list a bit first! I feel like I am that plate spinner at the circus this week. I’ve been trying to get a video clip filmed on Glass Pens, but the jackhammers and concrete saws in the backyard say otherwise. I think they have finished most of that, so  I should be able to get it done now.


Don’t forget all the cool classes coming up in November!

I will be teaching this awesome Fall Tangles class both in Temecula, AND Santa Barbara.

Fall Tangles

And if you have not yet taken a Zentangle 101 class, you can do both in the same day, as I have that on the schedule for both locations.

And Risa is teaching Pointed Pen Calligraphy on the 18th, just in time for working out your Christmas cards!

And of course, Fun with Alcohol Inks on the afternoon of the 29th.

Alcohol Ink on Toned Tan - Tree

Sign up for these great classes to reserve your space!


Ok…back to tasks, and ticking this one off the list!

Love to you all, Make Stuff!

 

Out of the Blackness…Light

Ok…I’m back. Sorry for not posting last week, but my holiday got the best of me and I was running a bit behind. And now, not only am I playing catch up, but I am still a little brain dead…er…jet lagged. So, here is the whirlwind that is going on now.

This week’s Diva Challenge (#338) was a white on black prompt. Diva already had the new Fine and Bold White Gelly Roll pens, but I just ordered mine yesterday, so I had to make do with just the medium. I did, however, pull out my cool black journal I bought in Venice last year to do it in.

Diva #338

This is a tale of jet lag. I have no idea what this even is, except it was done in the middle of the night when I could not get back to sleep. Zentangle helps. (And the new pens will be in stock in the store by the end of the week!)

I did get last week’s Diva Challenge (#337) of her tangle, Artoo (in honor of her son) done, as I incorporated it into my Fall Tangles class piece!

Fall Tangles

I am very excited to be teaching this, both at my place on November 4th, and in Santa Barbara on November 11th. Class includes all pens, pencils, and paper (that is the awesome Toned Gray Mixed Media from Strathmore.)

You will need previous Zentangle experience to take this class…but never fear! I will be teaching a Zentangle 101 class in each location on the same day! Sign up early to ensure your space!


With this horrible case of jet lag, all I want to do is sit and knit (especially since I am still sleeping at some pretty odd times.) I did knit on the plane most of the way home (mostly because I found this awesome yarn and some pretty new needles in Christchurch.)

Knitting

And wouldn’t you know it, I must have summoned the knit gods by doing this. There was a phone call waiting for me when I got back from a nice lady named Debra who wanted to use the studio to teach Hand Knitting. So won’t you join her on November 1st from 6-9 to learn to use your own hands as knitting needles to create this cool throw?

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You will need to bring your own yarn…3-4 skeins of ‘Yarn Bee Eternal Bliss’ chenille chunky yarn. You can get it locally at Hobby Lobby. Pre-register with comments below and I will forward it to Debra.


And talking about classes…The November schedule is up!

In addition to the classes listed above, Fall Tangles and Hand Knitting, we have Risa Gettler in on the 18th to teach Pointed Pen Calligraphy. Just in time for your holiday cards (and what a great way to practice!) this class will put you through the basics of the pointed pen. A materials list will be published, and everything you need will be available for purchase at the shop.

I will be open for Small Business Saturday (November 25,) with some awesome in-store specials for all your holiday needs. If you are on the email list, I’ll be sending out a special code for free shipping on Cyber Monday! (And CZT’s…I have a great deal on tortillions!)

Tortillions

And if you are in the area, consider dropping in for Open Studio on the 17th or 26th for a make and take ornament! I’ll include the first one for your $5 drop in fee, and you can purchase additional ones if you like.

And not to be left out of the awesomeness that is prepping for the holidays…Fun with Alcohol Inks on November 29 in the afternoon. We will explore some great papers, clear glass ornaments, and even some ceramic ornaments. Great for making gifts!

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And I am cooking up something new for December-January time frame, with a great new  (to me) pen/tool I am starting to use more. Here is a sneak peek!

Fluid Pen on Black Gesso


For fans of the book arts, I am happy to share that Cherryl Moote will be teaching a 3-day workshop for the San Diego Book Arts Guild in February. If you are not familiar with Cherryl’s work, you have seen me post a lot of books and things I’ve made in her classes. She is well worth stalking following and presents some awesome stuff that is Zentangle friendly!

Cherryl Moote

For information on this workshop, go to their website here.

 


And a final report on my holiday. We spent the 2nd week in Christchurch, New Zealand. Christchurch was rocked with devastating earthquakes in 2010 and 2011. The second one killed a lot of people (185,) and rendered the landscape of the city into something even the locals no longer recognize. It was like playing “I can’t remember what was there before” for a week.

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This is what remains of Christchurch Cathedral. It is smack dab in the middle of the city, but nature seems to be reclaiming it for its own. There is a huge, very permanent looking fence all the way around it, but there are viewing ports at various locations.

The “snow cone” Chalice in the background, I learned, is all the different plant life native to the area. Each sections leaf structure is different. With the clouds in it, I thought it looked like a cotton candy holder. It is quite lovely.

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One of the things that struck me was talking to a shop owner on our first day in Christchurch. She had the most awesome attitude…she said

How many times does a city have the chance to completely rebuild itself in the image it wants to have?

We did get to the Antarctic Center. Mike flew the mission to the ice in 2005/6 time frame, so it was great for me to get to learn more about what he was doing down there. I also met a penguin (he is a little blue.)

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And we ventured back to Sydney for a day to fly back. Since we had a whole day to kill, we hit the one place we didn’t get to the week prior, Manly Beach and the North Head Trail. We hiked more than 10 miles that day, but boy were the the views worth it.

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We also met a little dragon along the way. (He posed for this.)

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Lastly, I found this awesome opal to wear as a lasting memory of our time out there.

Yahweh Opal

So I guess I can come out of the darkness now.

Geez it is hot here. Maybe I’ll stay in the dark where it is cooler and draw!

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And Sometimes, Your Ink Runs…

Today has been a day of intense sadness. If I wore mascara, it probably would be all over my face…but instead, my ink ran. Picked up the first pen my hand laid on (Zig Cocoiro with Extra Fine Black insert,) and tangled myself calm in my Iona Cub. Then I spritzed it with SpectraFix, and that happened. Not sure why, so I guess I need to look that up.

But…all is not lost. The page actually looks pretty cool (although I have now removed that pen from my travel bag) and I will continue to use that book for my #InktoberTangles this month. I figured I have just enough pages in it to finish the month and keep scattering in some Diva Challenges whilst I travel (more about that later.)

So for Day 2 of #InktoberTangles, I decided to combine the Diva Challenge (#335) – a Use My Tangle (UMT) called Tint from Henrike Bratz, CZT with the tangle Dicso because I thought they looked cool together. They are both stepped out to be either stand alone or border types, so they naturally fit together. So here is my page…bleeding ink and all!

02 Inktober

 

And for Day 1 of #InktoberTangles, it was Bunzo…one of my FAVORITE tangles, and a true pen killer!

01 Inktober

If you would like to participate in #InktoberTangles, here is the prompt. Be sure to use the hashtag, and I would love to shout out to Stephanie Jenner, CZT, for putting this together. I think the list rocks!

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I did get last week’s challenge (#334) done, I just didn’t get a blog up for it. I have been playing with my glass dip pen I purchased last year in Venice, so I thought it would be fun to do the Crazy ‘Nzepple with it.

Diva #334

That one was done with the sepia ink the pen came with. I had been playing around a lot with it that week, both with the sepia and with Calligraphy ink in black. That pen really loves the soft paper, as it has a really smooth, fine tip. no pressure was required, and I really have to slow down a lot to get those lovely lines.

And another shot, without the pretty bottles and pen. The sepia on the left is Sharlarella from Sharla Hicks, CZT and the one on the right is Pixioze from Margaret Bremner, CZT.


I’ve put up a VERY limited class schedule for October. Not that I don’t have anything to teach, but I am headed out on vacation tomorrow night and will not be back until  around the 20th. I will fill any store orders when I return, unless it was something you needed sooner, in which case I am happy to cancel it.

But when I get back…lets do some Pumpkins on the 29th.

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And be sure to reserve your spot to play with Risa Gettler on October 28th as she presents Day at the Bleach. This fun class will take  you on an exploration of bleach on black paper, with beautiful pastel accents…and can be done with or without calligraphy skills.

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I will also be making an appearance in Santa Barbara on November 11th, where I will be teaching a Zentangle 101 class in the morning and Fall Tangles in the afternoon. Sign up as soon as you can, as I have heard this could be a sell out!

Register for any and all classes, and shop online at www.charkatscreativeinsanity.com. Or just click the Home button at the top of this page.


With all the stuff that is going on today, I want to leave you with this:

OTL Week 38 - Summer of Love

And a big hug. Next post will be from Australia!

See ya then, mate!

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Cozy Up to Tangles

Part of what I really love about the practice of Zentangle is the feeling of comfort I experience whilst tangling. Nothing else matters for a while. Nothing hurts…my body or my brain…for that little while. The outside noise shuts off. My inner critic shuts down. For that time, and usually a good while after, I am everything I want and need to be.

And when this week’s guest Divas – Juliette Flessinger and Kellie Fellinge, CZTs asked us to cozy up for a change of seasons, I was READY! Even though I live in Southern California, I love FALL! It means an end to the heat, even though we don’t get the foliage of someplace like New England, it is definitely a change. They gave us a few tangles and I picked Tripoli and a tile I had spray dyed with coffee and a silicone coaster. Tangled in Sepia and Brown Micron, and shaded with Van Dyke Brown Chalk Pastel, I outlined the coffee areas and added the flowers back in. I was really pleased. So here is Diva Challenge #333:

Diva #333

That was relaxing (doing the outlining) and challenging at the same time. I have to concentrate a lot to get the Tripoli to line up.


I was in a 2 day meeting last week, and I tangled quite a bit during it. Keeps me calm and stops me from being disruptive (I like to talk too much sometimes.) So here are a couple tiles I did there.

The Blue Flowers are on one of the tiles in did in my Paper Play class!

And I have been working through some more prompts from an online journaling thing I was following over the summer. I started really late, and I am WAY behind, but have been really enjoying these little dips into techniques and tangles I do not normally use. Here is what I am caught up to now:

I’ve also used this opportunity to use my tangle, Abukas, in as many ways as possible!


We have a fun class coming up on the 30th with Risa Gettler on doing this cool pop up card. Get a head start on your holidays with this multi-purpose card. While the main focus is to use your calligraphy skills, you can use a computer font instead if your skills aren’t where you want them yet.

Pop Up Card


I will be out of the country for a bit in October, so if you need store items, I should be shipping right up to around the 3rd. I’ll be back on the 20th!

There are still a few of the expanded Summer Time Blues Kits, and be sure to check out the video I posted on blue shading on the tan paper!

Tangle Away – and be cozy.

Throwing Some Blue Shade

Hey Everyone!

No Diva Challenge this week (she is busy with getting the kids back in school,) but I had something I just did not want you to miss!

I have been promising you a video for some time now with my Blue Glow Shading method, so here it is!

All the items used in the video are available in a kit, in a couple variations, at my online shop http://www.charkatscreativeinsanity.com!

So you can peruse the items a little closer, here are the pieces featured in this video.

I hope you like it!


I have a few pieces to share too! I was working on my Tangle Journal (where I create my step outs and use them in a drawing, and did this one for Jetties:

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And I particularly love the tangle Btl-joos (by Sandy Steen Bartholomew, CZT) and when it came up as the tangle of the week in Square One on FaceBook, I could not resist!

Square One - Btl-joos

I think that is enough to entertain  you this week.

Happy Tangling!