Category Archives: Inspiration

Join Me for a Musings Adventure?


Hello Friends!

I have been a stranger here…for quite a long time. After my summer time travels I did not find the energy or inspiration to blog right away. And now…it’s almost October.

Many things are brewing along my quest to share creative inspiration.
I believe I will blog again, and for now I must continue my break.

But I didn’t want to let fans
of the
Daily Musings Journal
be without information on the 2017 edition.

It is coming…and to celebrate I’m hosting a Doodle Days Musings Adventure in October.

Click here for all the details and to sign-up.



Details and purchasing information for the 2017Daily Musings Journal can be found at

The shopping cart will be open on Saturday, October 1. And for Musings Adventure participants there will be a wee special to kick-off the doodle fun.

I hope to see you along the adventure!!



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Filed under Creativity, Daily Musings Journal, Entrepreneurship, Inspiration, Journaling, Musings Adventure

Messages for You & Me


I love playing with collage, and the messages I find usually tell me something I need in the moment.

The message above is for you & me! We deserve the moon and the stars!

found-inspirations-in-progress_smI usually start my collages by playing with words on a square, and once I find the message that resonates I move them off the square so I can add some background – often doodles and sometimes other collage images (see above:).

It’s funny that I should be writing about collage this week as one of my favorite creatives, Jamie Ridler, started a conversation about collage over on her Jamie Ridler Studios FB page and also on one of her Behind the Scenes videos.

collage-stuff_sm The collage words and small images I have been saving for my found messages is currently a bit out of control and Jamie asked how people organize their collage images (seems she has a similar out of control dilemma).

Fortunately I also keep a small envelope clipped into my musings journal with just a handful of words/images…so for now I’ve let the out of control envelopes bulge. [I also have an out of control box that has bigger images in it, too. I need to think about what I want to do about all this. I may be ready to purge and begin again…we’ll see 🙂 ]

collage-clippings-titlePg_smBut I do love my little system for my musings squares.

I thought you might, too, so I created a template for you to create your own collage clippings envelope. Click here to download the printable PDF that you can cut and fold into an envelope as pictured at right. I don’t glue my envelop together so it is easy to open and access my clippings, but you can easily do that.


sticky-filing_smIf I’m running short on time but want to remember my message, instead of letting it get mixed up with other collage clippings, I’ll fold the words into a sticky note before stashing them in my collage clippings envelope.



Heart made with security envelope pattern — I love using security envelopes for collage, and save all the ones with great patterns.




Another message I found for you yesterday beautiful dreamer!






I also love to use photos and memorabilia for my musings collages. Here are some examples below:




Here’s a message I found awhile back that I think is meant for you, too.



I hope this post sparks ideas for you to create your own found messages collage system. Have some fun creating and playing with collage on your musings adventure.

And don’t forget to leave a comment and let me know how it goes. Today’s giveaway is a Musings Adventure Journal. But you need to comment or share on Instagram (tagging me, using the hashtag #musingsadventure & referencing found messages) by the end of today (Friday, May 27) to be eligible. I will be choosing winners tomorrow!

Thank you so much for playing along on this mini musings adventure. I hope you’ve had fun, and will continue on with your musings. I’m thinking I may start holding similar e-adventures a few times a year to ignite the musings adventure spark. What do you think? Please let me know that in the comments, too, if you could!

OK — see you back here tomorrow for one more blast of musings adventure inspiration. Oh yes…and I’ll announce the winners from the week, too.






stickers-journalP.S. Giveaways Update:
Today is the last day to enter the giveaways – on any of the week’s posts. As I mentioned above today you’re commenting for a chance to win a Musings Adventure Journal.
To be eligible just leave a comment on the daily post. For today’s entry please share your found messages inspiration and creations 🙂 You can also enter (or for an extra entry) by sharing your doodling squares on Instagram using the hashtag #musingsadventure – tag me, too, @lisa_deyoung. Be sure to reference musings adventure found messages in your description, too. I’d love to see what you create! [You have until the end of the day to comment on any of the posts and winners for each day will be chosen on Saturday May 28.]


P.S.S. If you haven’t ordered your Musings Adventure Journal yet, feel free to hop on over here to check out all the details and get yours today!





Filed under Creative Play, Creativity, Daily Musings Journal, Inspiration, Journaling, Mini Musings Adventure 5-2016, Musings Adventure

A New Adventure is Beginning…


This weekend I head to California…for my first week of Wild Heart Expressive Arts Teacher Training with Chris Zydel of Creative Juices Arts.

I have been following Chris’ work for several years now, and I first painted with her last fall at Ghost Ranch. It was a magical time of painting just for the joy of it.

Looking back I realize that creating has pretty much always been about the process for me.

The magic is in the present moment, playing with the creation.


Since my time at Ghost Ranch I have created a small painting space of my own (above is my most recent painting inspired by a recent adventure to Sand Dunes National Park, and also the goddess Rhiannon who encourages you to question rather than doubt.

I’ve been wanting to share more about the magic of creating, and there has also been much doubt.

So I’m thrilled to be mentoring with Chris over the next ten months  – to ask questions rather than doubt, to gain skills and confidence, and to develop some fun creativity programs that I can share with you.

I am beyond excited about the where this might lead me and Mountain Mermaid Studios…and you…somewhere with loads of magical creative inspiration!

I can’t wait to share my experiences with you.



P.S. Wanna go on a musings adventure? We’re going to have some doodle fun! Click here to check out the details about this free e-adventure!



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Filed under Art & Design, Creative Play, Creativity, Daily Musings Journal, Entrepreneurship, Inspiration, Journaling, Musings Adventure, Self Discovery

Water is a Precious Resource


The March theme for the Journey Within Art Journaling class I’m participating in (and teaching in later) this year was nature and natural living. For the spread I created above I took inspiration from Cindy Gilstrap of Junque Art’s lesson about taking cues from nature around you.

Of course this is not too hard for me – because I live in the Rocky Mountains surrounded by natural beauty. But in March the mountains are still covered in snow and there is not much color popping up from the ground yet, or budding from the trees.

LowPlayholeImage_500I was thinking about Cindy’s lesson as I was taking one of my daily mid-day pedals along the river…I thought “I want to take inspiration from the water that flows through the valley.”

I stopped to stand by the playhole to soak in the sounds and the site of the river flowing through town. And I snapped this photo to the left.

I didn’t immediately do anything with this, and a little later in the month my hubby and I were hiking up Cottonwood Canyon and I was in awe of the water still flowing there (until late last spring this canyon had always been, for the most part, dry).

CottonwoodIceCrystals_500The patterns in ice crystals that had formed along the now small creek caught my eye. I became intrigued by the thought of playing with the these patterns, and so I took a photo with that in mind.


Some days later I began to play with paint & pencils & stencils & stamps.


RiverPlayholeDetail_500As I was doing this I was thinking about how important water is in our lives – and how precious it is.

This reminded me of a poem I had written and calligraphed many years ago – after returning from travels where potable water was not readily available and there was a severe drought (and wildfires) beginning to take hold in Colorado.


I wrote the poem, in white, in the top left corner of the spread, but did not like how it looked.

Especially after watching Cindy’s lesson videos, I knew this was OK – she had encouraged us to use my intuition and that nothing is a mistake because with mixed media it can always be covered over with more layers.

This is exactly what I did – knowing that it was still part of the spread! I did add the first line of the poem back onto the spread, too.

I’ve written out the text of my short poem below.


water is a precious resource.

drink it to hydrate, or perish.

appreciate it, for everywhere it is not so easily accessible.

bathe in it, warm water soothes your muscles and your soul.

conserve it, otherwise soon you will not have it.

I love living so close to the beautiful Arkansas River.  I really do try to visit the river’s edge each day – if only to pedal along the path through town and back home again.

I feel truly fortunate to live where drinking water is good coming from my kitchen sink, and that without much thought I can stand under warm, soothing water in my shower.

I know I am not perfect about conserving water, but I always try to keep in mind that my easy access to water is a luxury really and I am fortunate to have such ready access to this life sustaining resource. I hope this musing will inspire you to feel the same.

Thank you dear Cindy for providing the inspiration for my journal spread, and this reminder about water – that flowed through me as I created.





P.S. If The Journey Within – A Year of Handmade Journals sounds intriguing, it’s not too late to join in the fun!! Click here to learn more. (full disclosure — this is an affiliate link:)


Here’s a little sneak peak about my new offering – coming later this spring.


The Musings Adventure Journal is a new undated version of the Daily Musings Journal! Stay tuned for more details coming soon – Sign-up here!

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Filed under Book Binding, Creative Play, Creativity, Inspiration, Journaling, mixed media, My Salida Backyard, Nature, Playing

Working with Resistance


Last Tuesday I participated in Resistance RX a webinar hosted by the lovely and wonderful Chris Zydel of Creative Juices Arts and Andrea Schroeder of Creative Dream Incubator.

I came away with a very interesting perspective on Resistance.

Resistance shows up when you want to grow and expand – which I have to say is something I’m working towards all of the time. Isn’t learning & growing what keeps life interesting?

So no wonder resistance is always hanging around…

Andrea and Chris lovingly pointed out that you cannot try to shove resistance in the closet…(it is not something you can fix). Resistance will always show up so you must learn to be with it, work with it, dance with it – own it!


(both images are my doodles from during the webinar)


Whenever resistance comes up, they coached supportively, it is important to sit with those feelings, and then move forward with baby steps.

Sharing is a resistance that shows up for me…

every time I want to begin a blog post; post on Facebook; share a new offering and how I am stepping into my role as the creatrix of mountain mermaid studios – resistance taps me on the shoulder and smirks at me.

…not because I don’t like sharing — but because I am afraid that what I share is not enough, that it is awkward & ugly. Resistance wants to keep me safe so I don’t say or do the wrong thing.

And…my heart wants to share inspiration to create play and thrive.

So today I am celebrating resistance and sharing with you in all it’s awkwardness:

I am the proud Creatrix of Mountain Mermaid Studios where I share inspiration to create, play and thrive – and some fun products and courses to help you on your adventures.

I am a work in progress, and I hope there is fun and inspiration enough to keep you hanging around to see how my adventure evolves.

And I truly hope that this inspires you to own your resistance and work with it, too.
I think it is going to make a difference for us!

What is your resistance? And how do you work with it? I’d love for you to share!




P.S. Since I’ve been talking about sharing I can’t close out this post without sharing a little sneak peak about my new offering – coming later this spring.


The Musings Adventure Journal is a new undated version of the Daily Musings Journal! Stay tuned for more details coming soon – Sign-up here!


Filed under Creative Play, Creativity, Inspiration, Journaling, Lettering, Self Discovery, Self-care