Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays!

I've heard all the woes from people trying to travel across the country and getting stranded in airports or having their plans canceled because of snow and ice. I hope everyone ends up where they wish and that you have a warm and peaceful season.

I will be at home with my husband and my two sons. We have no big plans other than enjoying each others company. We'll probably play games, watch movies, and view uTube flicks, and trade presents.

Christmas is also my birthday so Michael always makes be eggs benedict and that is something to look forward to, he makes the best hollandaise! I had a fabulous surprise birthday party on Monday but I will write about that on my next post.

Now it's time to eat the beef stew I cooked all afternoon.


Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Winner Is ..............

Congratulations! Joanne Huffman is the winner of the give away. I only had eight responses so I did the drawing the old fashioned way. I put all the names on a slip of paper, put them in a hat and had my son Tony draw a name. So Joanne, I'll get this off to you in the mail tomorrow.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Give Away

This is the prize for the drawing on Sunday. Those who answer and give their contact email whether they like my new blog background color better than the black will be in the drawing.

A shibori dyed silk hankie, gold/black dyed habotai silk piece, 2 yards of 1 1/4" wide shibori dyed silk ribbon. some lace, yarns, two black and gold buttons.

Monday, December 15, 2008

New Background Color, Blog Give Away & The Sun Came Out

I changed the background color from black to ochre and wonder how many of you prefer this? Is it easier to read having black type on a lighter background? If you leave your comment I will put your name in a drawing to win a cool prize. I am away from home and don't have any pics on my laptop to show you but the prize will consist of some of my dyed ribbons and other little dyed fabric goodies! I will have the drawing on Sunday, Dec. 21. BE SURE TO LEAVE YOUR EAMIL CONTACT for me in your comment!

Yesterday the sun did indeed come out for me. I took a three mile walk but wasn't able to swim in the ocean as the waves were strong and the water was churning brown. I did swim in the pool and soaked up some rays before I went to visit my dear friend in the hospital. Later I went to Joe's on the Green to hear a local musician. I have known her for years but am not sure I am spelling her name correctly, I have to find that out. Kaualani has a voice like a dream and is a very strong Hawaiian woman! I snapped some pictures of the sun setting and my day surroundings.

I walked again this morning but rain this afternoon. HiHo, it's still warm and better than cold, freezing rain!

I have many photos but am working on creating a slide show and that might not be until after I get home.

Aloha for now.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Kauai, Rainstorms, and Failing Eyesight


The one afternoon I got to walk I found this little bird feather on the path to the beach and later the coral hearts at Glass Beach.

I arrived in Kauai on Tuesday and spent Wed. with Connie. Thursday there were scattered showers and Friday I met Connie again at Mermaids for lunch after I had lomi lomi at Auntie Angeline's and then the rain started. During the night thunder was so strong it shook the condo and the rain fell sideways as the wind whipped it across the Island. Yesterday there were flash flood warnings and many roads were closed. I was forced to stay indoors which seemed ashamed since that isn't why I come to the island. I want to walk along the beach and hear the palm fronds cackle in the breeze. Alas it was raining too hard to go out and do that. I had a book I wanted to alter and some paints so I mostly glued and painted pages but my materials were limited and I got stuck with what to do next.

When I woke this morning at 5:00 (7:00 PST) I waited for the sun to rise. I went onto the lanai and took some photos of the moon peeking behind the palms.

Then I checked my horoscope from the little drop down box and realized perhaps my eyesight is beginning to fail? It read:

'If someone is rude, try not to take it personally. You'll only create a big drama.'

Only I read "If someone is nude, try not to take it personally. You'll only create a big drama." Oh my.

When it was late enough to drive to Joe's on the Green for breakfast the sun was coming out and this is the reward we get for all that rain ...............

The sun is fading in and out of a very cloudy sky but I'm going to walk now while I can because the showers are expected to return.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Holiday Faire Weekend

The weekend is over and most artists who vended at the Bargetto Christmas show over the weekend seemed to have sold more than was expected due to the economic woes many people are facing this season. I took a few pictures of my booth space as I was setting up but didn't get any after I was completely set up or any of myself. Once a show starts I don't often think of the photography part of things. I seem to do this when I'm teaching also and even on vacations. I take the camera but then forget to use it. Not sure what that's about and maybe I'll be able to change my habits?

I have plans to meet my 20 year old son Alex for lunch and I'm looking forward to that. Since he moved into his own apartment this summer only twenty minutes away I still only get to see him when he brings home his dirty laundry. Isn't that typical?

A ton of other things to do today since I'm leaving town early in the morning .... gifts to wrap and get in the mail, some shopping to do, banking, laundry, and there's unloading my car of all the props and things from the show over the weekend. And I need my bangs trimmed badly but my hair person is out of town and then I'll spend time trying to fit into last year's bathing suits and deciding if I can really be seen in public with one on. ACK!! It just ain't what it used to be. Sigh.

I better go take off my fluffy terry robe annd my fuzzy Ugg slippers and began my day.

I don't know if I'll get any Christmas cards sent this year so I hope everyone has very happy holidays and I'll try and post something from my laptop while I'm in the land of Aloha!

I'm meeting Joyce and Connie for dinner the first night I'm on Island and I'm sure I'll meet up with other friends I have there. Bea, Jerry (who runs the Kauai Music Festival)& Katherine, Tish and Heifara.

mele kalikimaka for now.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Christmas shows and events

Next weekend, Dec. 6 & 7 I will again be participating in the annual Bargetto Winery in the Cellars event. Dan May puts together a wonderful group of artists to show our wares in the wine cellars in Soquel, Ca. The Bargetto's have wine tasting, caroling, and a special wine club members evening as part of the festivities. It's cold in the wine cellar so we have to dress warm, coats, hats, Uggs. This is a sample of what my booth has looked like in the past.

This is me and another artist friend April from last year's show as you see we are dressed for warmth! (I also have hand warmers in my pockets!)

I'm showing scarves, wraps, and silk flower pins at the Santa Cruz Mountains Art Center's Gift of Art. That shows runs through Christmas Eve day.

After the Bargetto show I am leaving town to visit my favorite island of Kauai and see all my friends there as I relax and take walks on the beach everyday!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

"wayward blooms" don't care where they grow!

I just have to show you some of the new flower pins that I dyed fabric for and my dear friend Jennifer sewed. It's our unique collaboration that we are calling "wayward blooms" because of the torn fabric strips and the fact these are not "prefect" (ha, I noticed I made a typo here but it seems appropriate to leave it) .... they are not meant to be as in nature flowers aren't really perfect. Perhaps they start out as a perfect bud but in the blooming process they all become imperfect at some time and that makes them each unique from one another.

It amazes me that I dye ribbons and fabric pieces - silks, velvets, organzas,- send them to Jennifer who sews her magic into them and I get these back in the mail. It's like a wonderful surprise package. Jennifer and I have been collaborating for some time now and are beginning some new ventures that I'll keep you posted about.

I've put these flower pins for sale on Etsy so please have a look at them each individually and let me know what you think!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

"Wayward Blooms" & Hat Workshop

Friends wearing hats and looking fabulous in them at Art Unraveled 2008!

Sunday & Monday my dear friend Jennifer and I gave a mini hat making class( mini as in few people because my studio is small). Fabrics were dyed to make flower pins to adorn the hat, then we made the flowers using torn strips of fabrics for leaves and dupioni bias ribbon and other silk pieces for the main flower. The finishing touch is using vintage buttons. Below are three flowers pins I made.

I didn't get my hat finished since I was too busy helping run the workshop, know how that goes right? But I will work on it tomorrow and should get it sewn and I'll post final pictures then. Jennifer was very thorough on showing exactly how to sew the hat and add the brim wire!

This is such a fun class and it's amazing that it really is pretty easy if you have any sewing skills at all, mostly hand sewing. A whole embellished hat! What I learn though is that when people start dyeing fabrics and ribbons, they don't want to quit! And I say but we have to go onto to the next part, "but but but just one more piece to dye? they say."

We've proposed to teach this class at Art Unraveled in Phoenix so I'm keeping my fingers crossed that we get selected because it's an awesome class!

I've added some more dyed ribbons at my Etsy shop.

"Off With Her Head!" ..............

I had several replies about my headless angel and explored some solutions. Thinking of historical beheadings, of course Marie Antoinette came to mind. Marie Antoinette is perhaps best remembered for her legendary excesses and for her death: she was executed by guillotine at the height of the French Revolution in 1793 for the crime of treason. She has become one of the most famous Queens in history.

Then there was Mary Queen of Scots who was also the queen consort of France from 10 July 1559 to 5 December 1560. After a long period of custody in England, she was tried and beheaded for treason following her alleged involvement in three plots to assassinate Elizabeth I of England and place herself on the English throne.

And finally I fondly remember the story of Alice in Wonderland:

The Cheshire Cat is a fictional cat appearing in Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Alice first encounters it at the Duchess's house in her kitchen, and then later outside on the branches of a tree, where it appears and disappears at will, engaging Alice in amusing but sometimes vexing conversation. The cat sometimes raises philosophical points that annoy or baffle Alice. It does, however, appear to cheer her up when it turns up suddenly at the Queen of Hearts' croquet field, and when sentenced to death baffles everyone by making its body disappear, but its head remain visible, sparking a massive argument between the executioner and the King and Queen of Hearts about whether something that does not have a body can indeed be beheaded.

At one point Alice is threatened of being beheaded by the Queen of Hearts

Alice and the Cards“Let the jury consider their verdict,” the King said, for about the twentieth time that day.
“No, no!” said the Queen. “Sentence first–verdict afterwards.”
“Stuff and nonsense!” said Alice loudly. “The idea of having the sentence first!”
“Hold your tongue!” said the Queen, turning purple.
“I won’t!” said Alice.
“Off with her head!” the Queen sounded at the top of her voice. Nobody moved.
“Who cares for you?” said Alice (she had grown to her full size by this time). “You’re nothing but a pack of cards!”
At this the whole pack rose up into the air, and came flying down upon her.

I took Joannes's idea of the angel holding out her hand for a head and I cculminated these stories and decided that Moo's head should be placed on the angel's hand.

(Not to worry, it's only Photoshop!)

Friday, November 14, 2008

Headless Angel

Several years ago my long time friend Janet gave me a terra cotta angel blowing a
kiss. It has sat on the edge of the shelf above my computer among other art items I have of "winged things". Well this cute Moo kitty decided to romp along my shelf.

I was in the other room and heard a sound of something breaking. I discovered that my little angel had fallen and was broken, but only the head, shattered into bits!

I replaced the angel in her spot but there's something just not right about a headless angel so I may have to let her go.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

It's About Time ........

A time to be gone and a time to come home. I always think of the Grateful Dead line "such a long, long time to be gone and a short time to be there". It always seems that way to me. I traveled to St. Louis and always enjoy seeing the friends I've made there at the Weavers' Guild show. Jane Glidden does an amazing job of putting this show together every year and always seems so calm! I know she doesn't do it without a lot of help from behind the scenes. Marti has the task of inputting each and every item to be sold into the computer to print out bar coded tags. You have to realize how many items are for sale here! Whew, what a job! And then there are all the worker bees who haul the props in and out and set up the displays. It truly is an amazing event!

My friend Janet is always so gracious to put me up and all the stuff I lug along with me! I have my own room at her house now. LOL! But alas she is planning to move away from St. Louis and I fear I'll be having to stay in a motel room which won't be near the fun and I doubt we'd be able to have our "pajama parties" be the same.

After the three day show I traveled 150 miles south to visit my parents and my sister who drove from Ohio to be there. I love this old photo of me and Jan in our matching dresses that our mother sewed for us.

The trees were at the peak of color and the weather couldn't have been better. Mid to high seventies, sunny, and perfect for taking walks. I took so many pictures the day my mom, sister Jan, and I went to Markham Springs on Black River. We walked on all the trails and spent most of the day there. I have culled out more than half the pictures I took and still have too many to post but I'll try to pare them down. Or I need to figure out how to put up a slide show!

I'll leave you with a few pictures until I have time to get the slide show up.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

St. Louis

I've packed everything but my toothbrush that I'll need in the morning and then I'm flying to St. Louis for the annual Weavers' Guild show.

I really dislike packing, all the inventory for the show has to come off the hangers and be wrapped in tissue paper, then stuffed into those vacuum travel bags. I have to decide what the weather will be doing, cold, take sweaters and rain coat, boots, and a mixture of casual clothing and for wearing to the show. When I get there I will no doubt be ironing a lot. But it's all worth it when it's over.

The St. Louis guild has always made me feel welcome even though I think they secretly think I'm a little crazy. I've made some friends there and always look forward to this show. If you're in the area you have to come by!

I'll be going to Poplar Bluff for the week after the show to visit my folks and my sister will be there from Ohio too!!

My computer will be with me but not sure how much time I'll have to use it or get a connection. It may be after Nov. 8th before I get a chance to write more.

I hope everyone is enjoying their Fall weather!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

The Day After

Yesterday was long and emotional but I have to say I am so glad I went to both services. I had thought the one for Pippin would be a gut wrenching affair but in reality, even though moments of deep sadness and tears sprang forth, the service was so well done and sweet. What a gentle and inquisitive little soul he was. All who spoke were so eloquent and real and painted a picture of this young boy's life and who he was and who he was surrounded by.

At the service for the 21 year old it was so nice to see all his friends there. Most of these young people were my son's friends too and I made sure I gave each and everyone of them a big hug! We all sang along to Bob Marley's "Don't worry 'bout a thing, 'cause every little thing gonna be alright"! This was the song his mother sang to him as a lullaby.

It was an extremely contemplative day but I got to end it at a birthday dinner party for a friend that was full of pleasant conversation, meeting some new friends, and having a nice glass of wine.

We have to appreciate everyone in our lives that we value and pay attention!

Saturday, October 25, 2008


Today at 10:00, less than two hours from now, I will be attending a memorial service for a sweet little boy who died at age eleven in a tragic accident. He is the grandson of some dear friends of mine.

"Pippin Seales died at Natural Bridges, a place he loved, shortly after celebrating his eleventh birthday. He and two friends were playing in a cave below the entrance kiosk, when it collapsed. The injured friend is beginning to recover and needs your prayers. It took long, long minutes of frantic excavation to get Pippin out - first with the help of so many people who were nearby, and then by the rescue crew. He could not be resuscitated."

Quotes from those who knew Pippin in his many walks of life:

"so sweet"

"so beautiful"


"the stalwart kid"

"his contribution to our lives

is everlasting"

"so full of wonder and love"

"so kind"

"such a good friend to everyone"

"a bright shining star"

"Every time I saw him,

he opened my heart."

We all the know the cliches "Death is a part of life" "He's moved onto somewhere better" etc. etc., but it still leaves me to wonder why a young boy's life had to end this way, and why this boy? Thoughts that everyone ponders at one time or another and never has an answer for.

After this service I will be attending a second service for a young man, 21 years old, a friend of my oldest son's, who died in a car accident.

I can't believe this will be my day. I don't know how I'll feel. Right now I feel nervous and sad. In the back of my mind humor is trying to surface saying "Geez you sound like that lady in Harold and Maud!"

And what do people wear to these services? Black? I think not these days, but nothing too bright or flowery right? Bottom line is, it doesn't really matter.

I will go to pay respects to the families, to those who survived, and feel badly for them and at the same time grateful that my family is healthy and alive. Does that sound crass? I don't mean for it to. I truly am grateful since any of these accidents could happen to us at any time.

I think I'll close now and take a walk before getting ready for this emotional day.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Albie Smith's class at A&S

I thoroughly enjoyed learning to create paste papers using the techniques that Albie taught. Here are images of the work I did. We had a whole stack of papers to paint but I'm slow and only got a few done. I did get my book board put together and the front painted but not the inside. I can't wait to find time to finish this but it will have to be after Nov. 8th when I get back from St. Louis.

These are the first few small pages I did and I wasn't real happy with them but I had never used this technique before and was learning. I can also go back over them in the future to add more interest.

I painted a couple more small sheets of paper and then moved on to the large ones of which I only got two done.

By blocking out sections of the larger papers you can see how the designs could be used in other formats. Like a collage or a book pages.

This page was my "blotter" page and I quite like it and was surprised that it turned out so cool!

Now to see another persons work from this class go here ! Look how great his work is and how many sheets he got finished!

This is my covered book board.