Tears for Las Vegas

Today my heart is so sad, as I woke up this morning to hear the news about the shooting in Las Vegas. Today there are many tears for Las Vegas. A place that so many love is a place of sadness today.

I usually don’t write about current events or any of the craziness that is going on in the world today. I choose not to focus on negativity, however this one is so close to my heart, I can’t help myself. Today, this one is personal to me!

Las Vegas is so very near and dear to my heart. Tim and I lived in Las Vegas for eight years from 2006 to 2015. Many people go to Vegas for vacations, conventions, weddings or just a quickie weekend trip. One day Tim asked me why I liked living in Vegas. I had two reasons, (1) The energy. No matter where we went there always seemed to be such a high energy and the people were always so happy. And (2) when we lived in Las Vegas I felt like I was somebody important. I don’t have any particular reasons for having those feelings, and I can’t really explain the, but that is how I felt.

So many people think of Las Vegas and they immediately think about the gambling. Yes, that is there, (and that can be fun), but there is so, so much more to Vegas and unless you actually live there I don’t know if you can understand it. Almost everyone is from somewhere else, yet nobody is ever treated like an ‘outsider’ and everyone is welcomed.

Image: Tim & Debi Wedding Photo

In 2006 Tim and I were married at the Rio in Las Vegas. That was and still is the best day of my life!

Image:  Tim & Debi in Las Vegas

Las Vegas is where my art career really got started. While we lived there my artwork was in three different galleries. It is also the time when in 2011 the economy hit rock bottom and many of the art galleries went out of business. Yet through that event, my art took at different direction which led me to where I am today.

We no longer live in Las Vegas, but a part of us will always be there. Yet, having lived there I can tell you that these people are so strong. They are survivors and they will overcome this.

My heart and prayers are with all those in Vegas and all those impacted by this horrific event. Be strong! You are still Fabulous!

Image:  Word art:  Vegas BabyDebi


My Life Is My Masterpiece


In this lesson of Joanne Sharpe’s class from “Draw Your Awesome Year” our assignment was to draw our life.  First we were to draw a picture frame.  Then within the frame we were to draw all the things that were important to us that made up our lives.

The first thing that I drew was the Welcome to Las Vegas sign because I live in Las Vegas and I love it! 


This assignment really took some thought!  There are so many things that are important to me in my life, and I am grateful for each and every one of them.  However, to draw those things is a completely different challenge.  So, after much thought, this is what I came up with…

My Life is My Masterpiece

The Welcome to Las Vegas sign is because I live in Las Vegas and I love it.  I love the energy of the city and the motivation and inspiration it gives me.  In Las Vegas we have sunshine and palm trees which I love.  Of course I had to have the paint pallet because I am an artist and that is my passion.  Next to the palm tree I put in a doodle flower because I love my doodles so much. 

Under the title banner I have two interlocking hearts which represents me and Tim, (thus the “T” and “D” in the hearts).  Then surround the hearts are the little flowers which represent our kids and grandkids.

In the background is a Zentangle tile pattern because in some way or another those Zentangles usually find a way to sneak themselves into my art.

This was a fun piece to make and I really enjoyed the process of thinking it through.

Trio Snowmen


Trio Snowmen by Debi Payne

Trio Snowmen by Debi Payne

When I think of Christmas, one of the things that I usually associate it with is snow.  It’s funny that I associate Christmas with snow since I live in Las Vegas, and we just don’t get very much snow here is the desert.  Yet, I still associate Christmas with snow.

 I do recall seeing a few white Christmas’ in my lifetime.  Putting all the hassles aside that come with snow, there is nothing more beautiful than a White Christmas.  I love watching children in the snow.  There is something about snow that gets their creative juices flowing.  If it is having a snowball fight, or building a snowball, children can always find something to do with snow.

Christmas is coming soon, and so is the snow.  This year, instead of look at all the hassles that come along with the snow, try looking at just the beauty of it.  Be a kid again and go play in the snow.

If you are still haven’t sent Christmas cards yet for this year, check out the Trio Snowman Christmas Cards in our store by clicking here.

Welcome Home

"Welcome Home" by Debi Payne

“Welcome Home” by Debi Payne

When Tim and I lived in Las Vegas before, there was this little pizza restaurant that we loved, it is called Sunset Pizzeria.  It was a little restaurant in the middle of a strip mall with only about four or five tables inside and they were packed pretty close together.  About every week or two we would order a pizza, go pick it up, and then take it home to eat.  It is the best pizza in the world and I love it!   I always felt like getting a pizza was my personal treat because not only did I like the pizza, but I didn’t have to cook supper.

 After we had to move from Vegas we searched and searched for a good pizza.  During the year that we have been away, our travels have taken us to several different states throughout the southwest.  We would often try to find a pizza that we liked as well as Sunset, but (with the exception of one in Tucson, AZ that came mighty close) none of the others seemed to quite measure up.  I can’t count how many times during that year we were away that I said I wish I could have a Sunset pizza.

 When I would call my order into Sunset, Jodie would usually answer the phone.  She always recognized my voice as soon as I said “Hi Jodie”.  She would then reply with, “Hi Debi, a medium all-meat?”  To which I would reply, “yes ma’am… see you in about 20 minutes”.  Our phone conversations were as predictable as the pizza… always good.  Then when we would go to pick up the pizza I always went inside to pick it up where Jodie and I would have a quick exchange of ‘how are you doing’ and little chit chat while I paid for the pizza and sometimes waited for it to finish cooking.

 One of the things that I looked forward to in coming back was getting a Sunset pizza.  On our second day back in town, Tim came in from work and said, “let’s go get a pizza for supper”.  I was as excited as a little kid about going to get pizza.  But this time, since we were staying in a hotel, instead of calling in the order we went in to order and eat.

 Tim and I walked in and sat down at a table.  A guy from the back came out and asked us what we would like to drink, and we placed our drink order.  After we got our drinks, Jodie walked by and casually said, “hi Debi, how are you doing… we haven’t seen you in a while”.  I nearly fell out of my chair.  I couldn’t believe it.  I asked Tim, “did she just call me by name”?  He said, “yes, she did”.  I couldn’t believe that after a year Jodie remembered me.

 Jodie then came back to our table to take our order and ask where we had been.   We had a minute to chat and catch up.  As Tim and I were sitting there eating our pizza I looked at him and said, “now I know… I’m home!”

 It never ceases to amaze me how the people that I think would least remember me are the ones that usually remember me the most and make me feel the best!  Thank you Jodie and Sunset Pizzeria!!!

Going Home

Cubism Houses by Debi Payne

Cubism Houses by Debi Payne

After living for five years in Las Vegas, in June of 2011, unable to deal with the downturn in the economy and not being able to find jobs, Tim and I packed up all our belongs and left Las Vegas to go to Texas to look for jobs while staying with family.  After a solid year of living with family in Texas, having everything we own in storage in Texas and not finding a job in Texas, yesterday Tim was finally offered a job… in Las Vegas!

 This is now the third time that Las Vegas has called us to come back.  We love Las Vegas and it is home to us.  Yet once again we find ourselves asking, “What is in Las Vegas for us that is so special?”  Twice we have gone to look for it and not found it.  Now we will return for a third time and hopefully we will find it.

 I believe that everything happens for a reason.  Sometimes you have to lose everything you have to see what you’ve actually got.  The first time we left Las Vegas we were only gone for a few months.  When we returned we didn’t find “it”.  This time we have been gone for a full year and during this time I have been away from all my art supplies and away from creating the art that I love.  Although I have been grateful that I have had my computer and have been able to create art digitally, there is just something about holding a brush in my hand that I have missed so much.

 Perhaps being away from my art supplies (of which I call my friends) for so long and missing it so much, (without realizing it at this time) maybe this extremely long year of hardship has given me the insights that I don’t realize that will be reflected in my new art.

 I am very anxious to start this new journey or rediscovery.  Although I don’t know what Las Vegas has waiting for us, I am so excited and I can’t wait to see what it is, because I know that there is something!