Learning Korean

I started 2017 hoping I’d master Korean by the end of it, or at least be able to have a conversation. Sadly, even though I have studied quite hard at times, I can barely say a few things. The hardest part is listening. I can pick up words here and there, but not enough to actually know what’s going on. I can read and write in Korean, I can introduce myself, talk about the weather, ask someone for dinner… If I had to, I could probably make myself understood. I believe I have enough vocabulary for that, but every Korean I’ve met also speaks English, so it’s easy to fall back on that. It’s a beautiful language and quite a lot of fun to learn, though quite difficult for a European.

I painted my Korean friend’s daughter.


서아 (Seoa) – 9″x12″ Watercolor

More Portraits

I think I’m really getting the hang of this portrait painting thing. Here are Luca and Rosie brother and sister and friends of my son’s.

Rosie - 9" x 12" Watercolour Portrait by Franci

Rosie – 9″ x 12″ Watercolour

Luca - 9" x 12" Watercolour Portrait by Franci

Luca – 9″ x 12″ Watercolour


I put on puppet shows at daycare centres and preschools. I mostly make my own puppets, but I do have some store bought ones. Here are some of the latest I’ve made.

Felt Puppets: rabbit, penguin, bear, giraffe, walrus, bird, by Franci

Felt Puppets: rabbit, penguin, bear, giraffe, walrus, bird


Stuff my 3 year old says

A painting of Hugo, the artist's son, by Franci. 9" x 12" Watercolor

Hugo  9″ x 12″ Watercolor

Hugo *runs up to some girls playing at the park*: okay, now catch me!
Girls: but we don’t even know you.
Hugo *thinks for a bit*: I know me. I’m Hugo!


Hugo: why is there no parking in fire lanes?
Mom: well, if there’s a fire and if there’s a car there, then the fire truck won’t be able to get to the fire.
Hugo: no, the car will catch on fire and then it will be a ghost car.


Hugo: mama, I want to change my penis for your penis.
Mom: I don’t have a penis. I’m not male. I’m female.
Hugo: that’s okay. I’ll give you mine anyway and you’ll be ‘maled’.


Hugo: how old are you, mama?
Mom: 35
Hugo: 35! That’s too many!
Mom: yep, I have 35 years behind me. How old are you?
Hugo: 16. I have 17 years behind me.


Mom: what pants are you going to wear?
Hugo: butt naked pants.


Hugo: no, I don’t want a bath ‘cause you might put me to bed.
Hugo: it’s not Los Angeles, it’s Lost Angeles.


Hugo: this is a book about you mama.
Mom: no, this is a book about a girl who makes bad decisions.
Hugo: you are a girl who makes bad decisions.


Hugo with two sticks: I’m violining, I’m a violiner, I made an X.


Mom: cups are for drinking, not for washing hands.
Hugo: no, cups are for throwing out.
Mom: and what are we going to do when we want to drink some water?
Hugo: we’ll be wondering where our cups are.


Hugo at bed time: I’m hungry, I need a tomato.
I don’t need to pee. I peed yesterday. Twice.
I’m so sick, I need some water.
Turn on the light. The wall is black. I think it should be white.


Mom: go put on some pants.
Hugo comes back with his legs through the straps of a bra.
Hugo: I’ve put on my ‘foxies’!


Jacob: you have to listen to me because I’m your daddy.
Hugo: you have to listen to me because I’m your Hugo.


Mom: are you going to say “yes” to anything today?
Hugo: peek into my mouth, there are no “yes”-es left. They flew into the other room.
Mom: so if I take you to the other room, you’ll say “yes”?
Hugo (thinking): I want to say “yes”, but I can’t.


Mom: Hugo, are you paying attention? Focus, please.
Hugo: it’s not focus, it’s hocus pocus.


Hugo: I’m going to eat you all. I ate you all!
Girls at the park: No, you didn’t. We’re still here.
Hugo: Daddy! I ate all those girls.
Jacob: No, you didn’t. I can still see them.
Hugo: I just pooped them out.


Hugo: look mama, a cute little tiger.
Mom: aw, he’s cute.
Hugo: pet him.
Mom: he’s so soft (I’m petting the air).
Hugo: look mama, a cute little shark.
Mom: aw, so cute.
Hugo: look at his boobies.


Hugo: we have to get the vinegar rabbit.
Mom: what?
Hugo: the velveteen rabbit.
Mom: you want to read The Velveteen Rabbit?
Hugo: no, we have to get the car.
Mom: oh, the Volkswagen rabbit.


Hugo: I’m changing my name.
Mom: okay, what should I call you?
Hugo: Spot.
Mom: Spot, come here boy.
Spot: I’m coming.
Mom: Good boy!


Hugo: Oh boy mama! This book has words!


Hugo: dad, you’re a square.
Jacob: and I’m not offended at all.
Hugo: and I’m triangle.
Jacob: what kind of triangle are you?
Hugo: a rectangle triangle.
Jacob: a right angle?
Hugo: no, a rectangle triangle. and mama’s a circle. she’s round.
Jacob: yes, she’s got a circumference and a diameter, a girth.


Hugo: Where is it? Give it back! Give it back!
Mom: What did you lose?
Hugo: My scrape! On my knee!
Mom: It’s on your other knee.
Hugo: Oh.


Hugo: can I watch Dickie Toys?
Mom: no.
Hugo: mama, you got the words wrong. you got ‘yes’ wrong.


Hugo: Giuliano has a penis, me have a penis. Zoey has a china.


Mom: are you going to finish your banana?
Hugo: no, mama. I’m not going to eat it. I’m not a monkey. I don’t eat bananas.
Mom: what are you?
Hugo: I’m a tiger, mama.


Hugo: Take off my shirt.
Mom: No. What? What are you going to wear?
Hugo: My boobies!


Mom: what do you want for breakfast?
Hugo: tomatoes.
Mom: okay, omelet and tomatoes it is.
Hugo eats the tomatoes and runs to the mirror.
Hugo: my hair’s not red! What’s going on Arie? What’s going on? Oh, I forgot the ketchup.


Hugo: In 3 I turn March and when I was grown up at 0 in January I stuck my fingers in Hudson’s birthday cake


Two LEGO pieces stuck together.
Hugo: Mama, take off the green one.
I pull them apart and give him the pieces back one by one, red one first and then the green one.
Hugo: No, mama.
He puts them back together.
Hugo: Take off the green one.
I pull them apart again and give him the green one first and then the red one.
He’s happy.


Jacob: What’s on the moon Hugo?
Hugo: The sun.
Jacob: What else?
Hugo: Africans.


Hugo (talking to himself): 5 little monkeys jumping on the bed. One fell off and hurt his head. Mama called the doctor and the doctor said: do you want to watch Mighty Machines? The monkey said: no, it’s time to play outside.


Hugo: a map ball.
Mom: it’s a globe.

Hugo: a globe.
Mom: you remembered!
Hugo: it’s a planet ball.


Jacob: Look Hugo, a garbage truck.
Hugo: It’s a cement truck.
Jacob: I can play this game too buddy. It’s a plane.
Hugo: It’s a boat.
Jacob: It’s a train
Hugo: It’s a garbage truck.
Jacob: You’re right.



Hugo wraps a blanket around himself and says: “Look mama, I’m a man. Just like mama”

Hugo: mama, sing a lullaby.
Mom: Hush little baby…
Hugo: no, mama, that’s a left one. Sing a right one.


Jacob: Hugo, you’re such a joy!
Hugo: I’m not a joy. I’m a boy.



Hugo: You want milk.
Me: No, Hugo, you have to say “I want milk”.
Hugo sticks a finger in his eye.
Hugo: Eye closed.


Not quite there yet

I have this image in my head of what the portrait I’m about to paint should look like, but it never seems to transfer to the paper. I am getting closer though. It’s also true, that sometimes when I step back from my work, I surprise myself. Sometimes I want to do a good job so badly, that I ruin the paper.

Watercolor portrait of Zoey by Franci

9″ x 12″ Watercolor

Watercolor portrait of Mihaela by Franci

9″ x 12″ Watercolor

Two more portraits

I bought new watercolors, not the top of the line, but perhaps the 3rd or 4th best. I like them. They’re certainly brighter than what I had before. I made two portraits so far and I like what I painted, but I do have things I would change in both of them if they weren’t in watercolor and basically hard to fix.

Watercolor portrait of a Dutch Girl by Franci

Dutch Girl
9″ x 12″ Watercolor

Watercolor portrait of Lauren by Franci

9″ x 12″ Watercolor

My First Commission

Here it is! I’m happy and the customer is happy. It couldn’t have happened at a better time. On Tuesday I was feeling quite down after painting a disappointing dump truck and then on Thursday I got a commission and I was an artist again!

Mackenzie by Franci. 12" x 9" Watercolor

12″ x 9″ Watercolor

It sucks to be sick

I think on Thursday and Friday my son watched a lot of John Deere Earth Moving Machines, Max and Ruby and The Wiggles while I just lay down sick. But I felt better yesterday and got productive. I made a bonnet and got teased by family members that I was going to wear it. I do love the regency bonnet era as they all know but it’s a baby bonnet. I also made another pair of baby shoes to match it (since everyone loved the shoes I took to the baby shower last week) and I painted some stranger who offered me some points on deviant art for his portrait. I’m quite cheap sometimes! Here are the photos:

Watercolour Portrait of Kyle by Franci

12″ x 9″ Watercolour

Handmade flannel baby bonnet and shoes by Franci

Handmade flannel baby bonnet and shoes

Baby Shoes

I went to a baby shower today and I made these cute little shoes this morning. I can’t really say how long they took to make because I was constantly interrupted by my son, but they turned out to be easier to make than I thought.

Baby Shoes. Flannel

Baby Shoes. Flannel.