Original Painted Steer Skull

steer skull art by lindy gaskill

I love the look of a southwest style painted steer skull. And I thought it would be fun to paint one myself.

When we were in Baja last Spring I got the chance.

A man stopped by our place one day with a pick up truck full of plain, white steer skulls. All of them were beautiful. It’s often hard to find ones that are so complete and not deteriorated. I chose one to paint and purchased it.

We cleaned it up and set it out to dry. But guess who got into it? Our little snoopy dog Belle. Here she is smiling at what she did.

smiling border collie

She chewed the end off it. You can see the ragged edge of the nose.

Plain Steer Skull

I ended up rebuilding that part with papier-mâché. In the end, one can’t tell at all so I was pleased.

Now, what to paint on it? There are so many ideas for painted steer skulls on Pinterest.

I didn’t want to be too influenced by others although it’s hard not to be.

I eventually came up with an idea and sketched it onto the steer skull with pencil.

I first put down a layer of white gesso in the area I wanted to paint. This will make the paint last longer.

And then I painted it using my acrylics.

 

Steer skull art beginning painting

I didn’t worry about going outside the lines as I knew the background color would paint over it.

I think it came out nice.

It went through changes along the way though.

Notice the design has changed by adding orange flowers instead of the fanned graphic below.

original painted steer skull

I made it with a yellow background at first but I didn’t like how it fought with the turquoise top portion.

Painted Steer Skull by Lindy Gaskill

 

Painted steer skull by Lindy Gaskill

I liked the turquoise so I decided to paint more of what I liked which is always a good idea.

I like it much better now.

steer skull art

original steer skull painting

I’m not sure if I’ll ever do another painted steer skull but this one was fun for my very first one.

What do you think?

 

 

New Colorful Whimsical Acrylic Paintings

Whale, Raven, Sugar Skull Paintings

I’m in Mexico.

I can see I’m being affected by it’s beauty, color and magic.

I’ve always loved the sugar skulls in Mexico. I’ve done one other one a few years ago which you can purchase as a print. I felt the calling to create another.

Full Bloom Sugar Skull, 8″ x 10″, Acrylic on Wood Panel, (sold)

I’m fascinated by the raven and I’ve made quite a few paintings with him in it. This time I’ve added him to a painting with a dream catcher.

A good explanation of the dream catcher can be found at http://legomenon.com. They say, “The shape of the dreamcatcher is a circle because it represents the circle of life and how forces like the sun and moon travel each day and night across the sky. The dream catcher web catches the bad dreams during the night and dispose of them when the day comes.” I like that.

I own a dream catcher that I have in my home in Washington. It has beautiful feathers hanging from it and is made from twigs and leather string.

Catching Celestial Dreams, 8″ x 10″, Acrylic on Wood Panel, (sold)

In Todos Santos, we can see the whales spouting and jumping out in the ocean. I love watching for them. Greg said one time he heard the whales singing when he was swimming at Las Palmas beach. That is cool!

 

Swim Deeper, Follow the Whales, Acrylic on Wood Panel, $375

If you would like to purchase one, send me an email.

Which one is your favorite?

Moody Black Clouds in My Paintings

Moody Black Clouds Palm Trees Sunset Photo

The other night when we were sitting and watching the sunset I realized where my moody black clouds come from in my work.

Moody black clouds sunset

I had never really thought about it before but there they were. The clouds that offered this inspiration. And here is an example of them in my art.

Blue is for River Dancing Cowboy Art

I’ve always said nature inspires me and here is the perfect example!

This cowboy print inspired by Darryl Purpose’s music is for sale in my Etsy Shop>

Hope you are enjoying awesome sunsets too!

Peace,

Lindy

 

How to apply for temporary residency in Mexico 2017

baja map

baja sunset

If you’re like many people you go online to find information on how to do things. However, we found a lot of outdated information on how to apply for temporary residency in Mexico so I thought I would share our process of getting a Temporary Residency Card.

This is for those Americans who intend to live in Mexico (for non-lucrative purposes) and obtain a temporary residency card for the first time.

This is what we did:

First I emailed the Mexican Consulate in Seattle to see if there was anything we needed that wasn’t listed on their website. I finally got a response back. This is what they said.

It’s not necessary to Schedule an appointment, you can walk in from 8:30am to 11:00am from Monday to Friday in order to start the process of the Visa. These are the documents you need:

·         Valid Passport and 1 photocopy

·         Visa application form (you can download it from their website)

·         1 photo passport size

·         Proof of income from social security income (Last 6 months) if you’re retired (This didn’t apply to us since we are not retired)

·         Bank statements from checking or saving accounts (last 12 months)

·         Documentation of legal stay in the USA (if needed) (This was not needed by us)

·         Original Marriage Certificate and 1 photocopy

So, I collected all the documents as well as a small size and regular size passport photo as I couldn’t find what size we needed. Turns out they wanted the small size (3.2 cm x 2.6 cm). I made 3 copies of each thing just in case they needed more than what was mentioned.

Turns out they didn’t need more copies than what was mentioned but you never know.

So we went to the Mexican Consulate (go early as they close at 1pm and it can take several hours) and told the person at the desk what we wanted and showed her all our paperwork. She asked us a few questions about what we wanted to accomplish. She then took our passport photos, attaching them to our application, and other documents and asked us to wait.

Finally after almost 2 hours of waiting we were called and told that we would have our photo and fingerprints taken which they did. She took our passports and we were told to wait again.

Finally we got our passports back which had our  temporary visa photo they took of us in it. It was stamped and put inside our passport. We were told we would have 30 days to apply at the Immigration office in Mexico for a Temporary Resident Card similar to the characteristics as the Visa given at the Consulate.

The woman at the Mexican Consulate said to bring all the same paperwork with us to the Immigration office when we went as you never know what they might need. The Mexican Consulate kept our bank statements so I printed out more copies to bring with us.

When we crossed over the Mexican border, we went to the immigration office (as we usually do at the border) and they took our passports and filled out immigration forms which we signed. They told us we would have 30 days to apply for our Temporary Resident Visas at the Immigration office in La Paz (closest one to Todos Santos where we were going).

A couple days later, we went to the Immigration office in La Paz. It was not crowded and we were able to talk with the person at the desk. He explained we needed to fill out a form online at https://www.gob.mx/tramites/migracion-visa-y-pasaporte and gave us all the steps to fill it out. He said we needed 3 copies and to also get 3 small passport photos (chico) which we could get down the street at a specialized photography studio. Also he gave us a form to bring to the bank to pay a fee and get a receipt. It came to 3715 pesos each.

We went to Office Depot to get on the computer and fill out the form and print it out.

To fill out the application, follow the steps below. Go to:

https://www.gob.mx/tramites/migracion-visa-y-pasaporte

• Condiciones y estancia en Mexico

• Expedición de documento migratorio por canje

• Formato para solicitar trámite migratorio de estancia, llenado de manera electrónica a través de la página de internet con firma autógrafa del promovente

On this page called Tipo de Tramite

Que desea hacer?*:
• Canjear o reponer documento migratorio

Especifique•:
• Canje de FMM por Tarjeta de Visitante o de Residente

Pais*:
• Estados Unidos de America

Nacionalidad actual*:
• Estadounidense (this means American in Spanish)

I didn’t put in all the answers as you will have to fill that out yourself but it’s things like your name, sex, date from your passport, passport expiration date, what state you live in, etc. It helps to know spanish or use the Google Translate to help fill it out.

Then we went and got the passport photos and to the bank to pay the fee.

The front photo must be the chico size and in color with a white background. No wearing glasses or earrings in the photo and hair must be pulled back, behind the ears. No smiling allowed. Also a side view is taken. Polaroid or cellular phone pictures will not be accepted. We got our photos taken at the place the immigration officer recommended. I forget how much they cost but not that much.

We went back to the Immigration office to give them the receipt, the application forms and photos. We signed some papers and were told to wait for an email. I also will note they didn’t need 3 copies of anything, just the one but you never know.

Within a day or so an email arrived from notificaciones-inm@inami.gob.mx that had a number (el número de pieza) and a password (contraseña) which was used when we got another email a day or so later that had a link. After I logged in there was a notice that said we were to go the immigration office again and bring with us a sketch and/or map location (photographs) of our Mexican address and it must contain street name, number, adjoining streets that are of our location. And current proof of address such as CFE (electric) or Telmex (telephone) bill. So I made a map of where we live using Google maps.

We went to the immigration office bringing our Map and CFE bill. These were taken from us (can’t remember if we signed more papers) and we were told we’d get another email and we’d have to come back to have our finger prints taken.

Sure enough, in a few days another email arrived. We went into the Immigration office and they took our finger prints, we signed some papers and they gave us a paper with our special number (Clave) on it which is used for other things such as getting a drivers license, etc. They said to come back in 7 to 10 days to get our Temporary Resident Cards.

Wow, who knew it would take this long! If you’re going through the same thing, this might be helpful to know what to expect. Although I understand different Consulates and Immigration Offices could have a different process. Best of luck!

Visit to the waterfall at Santiago, Baja, Mexico

Santiago baja waterall

On our road trip over to the East Cape in Baja, we also went to visit the waterfall at Santiago.

Bajainsider says, “Santiago is a small pueblo located 46 km north of the, Los Cabos Airport (SJD), San Jose Del Cabo, Baja Sur. At about 42km you make a left turn off Highway 1 to Santiago…”

Follow the signs (or ask someone like we did) to a rancho officially called the Rancho Ecológico Sol de Mayo. There will be a gate you will pass through and arrive at a parking area where you will find someone to direct you. You can pay a small fee to go the waterfall. We stayed in one of their cabinas so it came with the room.

santiago-waterfall

The walk there wasn’t too bad. A little steep in some spots but there were stairs built into the rock. Bring your own water, snacks and towel. There is a rustico bathroom right at the start of the trail.

Walk to Santiago Waterfall

Santiago Waterfall in Baja

It’s beautiful as you can see. There are lots of watering holes to take a dip in.

Waterfall pools at Santiago Waterfall

Water at Santiago Waterfall

One can climb above the falls and find even more pools to swim in.

Swimming hole at Santiago Waterfall

 

Santiago Waterfall Pool

And the rocks have some pretty cool and beautiful patterns on them.

Santiago Waterfall rocks

SAntiago Waterfall rocks and plants

Santiago Waterfall Rock Formation

This one (below) looked like an eyeball.Waterfall at Santiago Rocks

I liked this heart rock formation.

heat rock at Santiago Waterfall

We stayed in one of their cabins that was about $30 or so a night.

Cabin at Santiago Waterfall

It was very comfortable!

inside cabin at Santiago Waterfall

Table outside Santiago Waterfall cabin

Inside the cabin was a bed and bathroom and across from that outside was a kitchen building with an upstairs area we could sit and watch the stars. Each cabin had their own kitchen. We did have their breakfast (you have to pay for) in the morning at the main building where you enter the area.Santiago Waterfall cabinas

Upstairs on top of kitchen at Santiago Waterfall

upstairs at Santiago Waterfall cabin

This sun and moon kiss sculpture is inspiring one of my paintings. Stay tuned for more about that.

art in Santiago Waterfall cabin

We cooked dinner by candlelight as there was no electricity. They supplied us with a bunch of candles so it was fun.Cooking by candlelight at Santiago cabin

It was a beautiful sunset.

Sunset at Santiago Waterfall

I highly recommend this adventure!

Snorkel Beach at Punta Pescadero on East Cape, Baja, Mexico

snorkel beach east cape baja

We headed over to the East Cape of Baja, Mexico to explore the area around Los Barriles. We wanted to look for great camp spots on the beach. We love camping and swimming in the beautiful water on the east side of Baja. This trip we were lucky to discover Snorkel Beach.

We stopped in Los Barriles to get groceries and supplies and asked a couple people about where to camp. We were told about a place called Snorkel Beach that was north of Los Barriles near the Hotel Punta Pescadero Paradise. It sounded great so we headed out to find it.

We followed the road (Los Barilles-Santa Teresa) north out of Los Barilles along the coast and took a turn off toward the beach at El Pescadero. We traveled along a dirt road (recommend 4 wheel drive) until we came to a beach that we decided must be Snorkel Beach as it was just south of the hotel called Hotel Punta Pescadero Paradise.

We learned about this great Baja California Almanac Map below from a couple we met at Snorkel beach. They let us take a pic of it so we wouldn’t forget the name of it.

We highly recommend getting it. It is a very detailed almanac that shows roads that are off the beaten track that don’t show up on your regular map. It’s on our “to buy” list.

Camping baja

This is Snorkel Beach.

There weren’t many people there. We camped for two nights. There were a few people who arrived during the day but only one other car was camping like we were. Everyone who arrived during the day left by the evening.

Camping baja

You can see Hotel Punta Pescadero Paradise up on the cliff north of where we camped.

Camping baja

Here’s our camp spot. We got the tarp out to create a little shade.

Camping punta pescadero

Greg rigged it up so we could get out of the sun.

camping punta pescadero

He also fixed us some killer margaritas.

camping baja

After swimming and snorkeling (the best area was around the rocks just below the hotel), naps were in order.

camping baja doggie

On the second night, after a bit of relaxation, we left the dogs to watch over the camp and we headed up the road toward the Hotel.

camping baja

It was a beautiful evening.

camping-baja-10

It was a nice walk!

Hotel Punta Pescadero Paradise

Once at Hotel Punta Pescadero Paradise, we found our way out to the patio and ordered an excellent pizza and margaritas for dinner. Yum! Looked like it would be a great hotel to spend the night at too. But we liked our camp spot so although we considered it, we didn’t stay at the hotel.

hotel punta pescadero paradise

Glad I remembered the bug spray but we really didn’t need it. There was a light breeze that kept the mosquitoes away.

Hotel Punta Pescadero Paradise

The twinkly lights were muy romantico.

Hotel Punta Pescadero Paradise

And the sunset was just gorgeous! It got better as the evening light faded. After dinner we walked back to our camp via the beach. It was a great end to a wonderful camping trip at Snorkel beach.

Hotel Punta Pescadero Paradise

We left the next day and explored more of the area south of Los Barriles around La Ribera and then headed up to Santiago to find the waterfall. More on that in my next post.

One other tip….you don’t have to go back on the same road that you came in on. Go north on the dirt road past the Hotel Punta Pescadero Paradise to

Happy travels.

Homemade Mosquito Spray Repellent Recipe

Jungle tree

Naturally when you live in the tropics there are going to be insects.

And I’m one of those people that the mosquitoes love to bite. It drives me crazy sometimes.

Especially when Greg doesn’t get a single bite and I get a bunch!

I do not like spraying chemically infested mosquito repellent on daily that isn’t natural. So I decided to make my own.

Sometimes when you are traveling it’s hard to find the ingredients you need. In the small town where we are staying in Mexico, it is equally so.

The hardest thing to find were the essential oils but I found some. I found both at small health food stores.

citronella and lavender oil

Here’s my homemade mosquito repellent recipe:

What you will need: A small spray bottle preferably dark colored to keep the solution away from bright sunlight which helps to preserve it.

Ingredients:

2 Tablespoons Boiled Water
2 Tablespoons Vodka
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
30 drops of Citronella Essential Oil
15 drops of Lavender Essential Oil

Here are the steps:

Gather your tools and ingredients.

mosquito repellant ingredientsBoil some water.

boil water

Add all the ingredients into the bottle one at a time. Shake the bottle between adding each ingredient.

Next, shake, spray on and smell the nice aroma of citronella and lavender.

spray mosquito repellant

I make this in small batches so it doesn’t get rancid.

I’ve read you have to reapply every few hours to keep it active.

So far it’s working great for me!

 

Our travels to Todos Santos, Baja Mexico

Sunset in Todos Santos, Baja

We’re in Todos Santos in Baja, Mexico! Yay!

So how does one move to Mexico for part of the year and the States for part of the year? People do. We are one of them. Here’s a few photos and our story in a nutshell. If you have any questions, shoot me an email.

First you have to make the decision to just “do it.” It helps if you have some way of making a living while you are out of the country too! I have about 5 different income streams but I could go into that in a whole other blog post.

Then you have to set the intention and then get to work.

This past summer, we had a huge garage sale and unloaded a bunch of stuff at Goodwill. Then we got our house all ready to sell and took a road trip up to Washington to scope out areas to live and visit family.

We fell in love with the Bellingham area and since we want to be close to Camano Island where the relatives are, that area seemed ideal.

We came home and sold our Prescott house in November.

We packed 1/2 our stuff into 2 U Haul boxes to send to Bellingham, Washington to deal with later.

uhaul-box

Greg is a master at getting everything to fit.

packed-trailer-3

Then we packed the rest of our stuff into a big trailer.
packed-trailer-2

Hmmm, we seemed to have A LOT of STUFF.

Packed-Trailer

But….we were on our way.

Although, we didn’t get far before we decided the trailer was too heavy and we needed to get rid of more STUFF!

Here we are unpacking the trailer at the local thrift store in Blythe, CA.

unpacked-trailer-2

We unloaded and made a giveaway stack for the thrift store and then repacked.

unpacked-trailer

Greg worked his magic and got everything back in.

Cody and Belle were relaxed and good dogs the entire time. They had a nice little compartment behind the front seats to hang out in.

cody-belle-in-truck

Things were going swell until it started to rain. Oh, and I left my purse in the hotel room accidentally after we left which actually worked out okay in the end.

So we stopped at the hardware store and picked up a tarp. Greg’s a master at wrapping up trailers too. 🙂

tarp-covered-trailer

We made a quick stop back to the motel to get my purse and used their internet to check on the real estate happenings with the house sale. Turned out there were some more papers to sign so we did that and then we were off.

We pulled into Jacumba, CA and ended up staying 2 nights at the http://jacumbaresort.com/ . It was a real treat and we did some major relaxing. We soaked in their mineral spring spa which I totally recommend!

Next day we crossed into Mexico with about a 30 min. wait at the border to get our papers and have the trailer checked out. Then we were on the road.

We stopped in San Quintin at the beach front Hotel Mission Santa Maria (Formerly Desert Inn) for a night. This hotel has been updated and was very nice, friendly and comfortable. Then we stayed the night at Don Gus in Guererro Negro. Don Gus has a restaurant there too which is very good. All have wifi which is nice.

Then we went to Playa Escondita and camped for 2 nights on the Sea of Cortez. This is one of our favorite camp spots. The same place Greg asked me to marry him. Ahhh. 🙂 Side note: the tourmaline stone in my wedding ring is the same color as the Sea of Cortez….bluish green. My favorite color.

Okay, where was I?

We met some great people there that we hoped would come visit us in Todos Santos. So far, they haven’t appeared so maybe we will cross paths at another time.

So now we are here in Todos Santos and enjoying being in one spot.
We spent Christmas with a nice dinner at the Todos Santos Inn. It’s so beautiful there and the food and drinks were killer.

We’re looking forward to the New Year with plans to head to Sayulita in February!

Happy New Year!

Love and blessings,
Lindy and Greg

Merry Christmas from Lindy and Greg

New Year Party Painting

New Year Party painting

Hello Art Lovers,

I begin the new year with a splash of color!

It is fitting that my first painting for 2015 is titled “Fiesta de Año Nuevo” which is spanish for New Year Party.

It is a celebration of color, line and pattern! And since we are in Baja, Mexico right now, where you will find lots of that in the ceramics, art and culture here, what could be more perfect than that?

New Year Party painting© Lindy Gaskill, “Fiesta de Año Nuevo,” 12″ x 16″, acrylic on paper, unframed $275, framed with mat and glass $457

I have a new product to tell you about as well.

Gallery Wrap Canvas Prints

I’ve wanted to offer an affordable print that doesn’t need framing. I’m happy to now offer gallery wrap canvas prints with 1.5 inch black sides. They are wired and ready to hang.

This also means that more of my images can be larger prints.

Check out my Etsy Shop to see what I have available for purchase.

I’ll have more postings about our move in the days to come. So until then, I’m wishing you a spectacular New Year filled with love, laughter and everything your heart desires!

Good thoughts,
Lindy

A favorite spot is Sayulita Mexico

Sayulita Main Square

In recalling our recent trip through Mexico and Ecuador, I’m finding that my thoughts keep going back to Sayulita. It is one of my favorite spots from our travels.

There is a lot to love about Sayulita Mexico.

It has a cool main square.

Sayulita Art

Lots of beautiful art.

Greg enjoying Sayulita view

Great views for enjoying a margarita

Greg and Lindy in Sayulita

and a marvelous meal.

Live music at Bar Don Pato

Heard some rockin’ good music at Bar Don Pato.

Happening bar in Sayulita

Found some happenin’ cool bars

Leslie Art Opening

Met some nice people and had a lot of laughs. This is Leslie’s Art Opening.

Greg and Mojo in Sayulita Fine Art Gallery

Met some other nice artists. Greg with artist Mojo.

Mojo art

Mojo’s painting

Checking out the views of Sayulita

We took a great hike to check out the views

Walking on trails in Sayulita

and took some great walks too.

Sayulita Jungle

Lots of jungle

Sayulita view from hill

Terrific beaches

Semana Santa in Sayulita

We had fun even when there were crowds of people for Semana Santa.

Sayulita Sunset

Breathtaking sunsets

Sayulita Sugar Skulls

Cool Shops

Sugar Skull shop in Sayulita

Sugar skull art

Adorable Chihuaha

Adorable pups

bamboo cabana seen in Sayulita

Interesting places to stay.

Happiness Factory - ice cream in Sayulita

Gotta love a place with a Happiness Factory.

Tree within a tree in Sayulita

Cool trees

Sayulita Beach looking north

Deserted beaches

Sayulita beach

Beautiful weather

orange flowers in Sayulita

Gorgeous flowers

Iguana in Sayulita

Iguanas

Dia de Muertos painting by Lindy Gaskill

Here’s to celebrating Sayulita, Mexico!
“Dia de Muertos,” acrylic on wood panel, 20″ x 20″, NFS, ©Lindy Gaskill