Thursday, December 3, 2009

Wag More, Bark Less

Just yesterday, I was following a car with a bumper sticker that said, "Wag more, Bark less". It took a second to figure it out, but I once I did, I thought, "wow, isn't that the truth"! So . . . here it is, a reminder to appreciate everything we have and stop griping about all the rest. This is something I am working to remember especially this time of the year. So join me in committing to this mantra and wag your tail!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Done with THAT Project

Well, my studio is finally cleaned up (sort of anyway). It was a little cleaner this morning before I started scrapping some pictures from Halloween and Mark's 40th birthday. OMG - my "baby brother" is 40! I picked up the pictures this morning and was inspired to get them done right away so they don't go the way of many other scrapbook projects. They aren't done yet by the way.

Now to the purpose of this post. I was able to finish 5 snowmen. I got so into them, I had to name them all. If I charged for my time, each of them would cost about $100 but since I know that isn't happening, I put a more reasonable price on them.

I also made some more pendants, paper and assorted Christmas decorations. Of course I had high hopes for at least twice as many things if not more, but as usual, the time element got in the way. I should have just kept going and started for next year!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

It all started when.... OR What does Creativity Look Like?

I couldn't decide which title would be the best for this blog entry so I used them both. It all started when I couldn't find my favorite white handled scissors. After dinner, I came back into my studio to putter as I call it and couldn't find my scissors. So... I looked everywhere, underneath piles of stuff, on the floor, even in other rooms of the house including the hall bath room which has been renamed the "studio annex". I'll tell you about that later. Anyway, during my search it occurred to me that this is what my studio looks like when I am being most productive. Then I decided that would make a great blog entry so I decided to take some pictures. Nothing is ever easy is it? I realized after I had taken the pictures that I still had the 1500 pictures from China and Tibet on the camera and I should probably erase those before I tried to download 5 more to post here. Now, of course I can easily remember how to delete a picture or two, but 1500? - time to get out the camera instructions. OK, pictures deleted, new pictures taken of the studio (oops I should have gotten one of the annex!), the discovery of my scissors right next to the glue gun. (When you see the pictures, you'll understand why I couldn't find it), pictures downloaded to computer, and here I am writing this blog. So you see, it all started when. . . and what creativity looks like are perfect titles!

Monday, October 12, 2009


Well that time went by very quickly! We are back home after a wonderful trip to China & Tibet and I plan today, to have everything put away in my studio so that I can start doing something other than, cleaning, sorting pictures etc, and catching up on life. I still have to finish uploading our pictures to Shutterlfy. When that's done, I'll let everyone know. Our trip was wonderful and so enlightening that I can't possibly sum it up in a word, a paragraph, or even a blog post.
I did take a few minutes to do a journal page one day while we were at the cabin. I saw the saying on something and it really struck me so here it is. More to follow and soon I hope - it's time to start doing Christmas isn't it?

Sunday, August 30, 2009


Well, it's finally here. We leave tomorrow for 21 days in China and the only word I can use to describe my feelings is anticipation. I have thought about, talked about, planned and dreamed about this trip for a long, long time, and now all I have left to do is anticipate - anticipate the beauty, the culture, the countryside, the people, the ancient history and the crowded cities. It's going to be a wonderful trip and I, for one, can't wait to get started.

Last week, I bought a magazine that I don't normally purchase and in the first article, it had the artist's favorite quote. I thought it was quite appropriate for the way I feel about this trip and life in general:

"Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from safe harbor. Catch the tradewinds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."

-Mark Twain

Zai jian

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Latest Work at Embellish

Before we left the cabin, I was busy making the button bracelets using vintage buttons, some collages, and several fall decor items. Once I delivered them to the store, I took some pictures of the displays. I also changed the display of the glass pendants by hanging them from the old wooden shuters. The "Pumpkins" and "Harvest" blocks as well as the "Harvest Thyme", "Autumn", and "Pumpkin Pickin'" signs on the bench are mine. I hope to teach a class on the canvas collage sometime this fall, if not, then next spring or summer.

By the time we left, I was filling the large hummingbird feeders once a day and the smaller window ones 3 times a day. I wonder what they are eating now - poor things? I brought most of my art supplies home with me since our return to the mountains may be short trips. We do hope to make our annual fall pie and leaf tour though! Can't miss that!

Probably, my next post will be after we return from our trip to China! WOW, I can't believe it's happening!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Friends - Old & New

It's been a busy few weeks, but now we are back in the cool (and hopefully rainy soon!) mountains. First we had a visit up here from my dearest and oldest friends, Lee and Carlanda (AKA BFF). We have been friends for over 20 years. We drank chocolate martinis & beer (not at the same time!), solved all of our problems and the problems of the world in just a few short nights. Isn't that amazing? She also attended her first (but not last, I hope!) yoga class. We even played Bananagrams so that our brains didn't go stagnant. What a fun weekend we had!

After they left, we headed for Tucson. I spent the next weekend with a wonderful group of women at a lovely historic resort in Tucson, The Arizona Inn. The pictures here, show just a glimpse of the lovely grounds. We drank, ate, and laughed our way through the weekend. It was so nice to feel so welcomed by a group of women that had known one another for over 30 years. I was definitely the newcomer, but sure didn't feel that way. Thank you all.

Finally, while in Tucson, I got to visit with two dear friends that I often meet for coffee, cribbage, a day of playing, shopping, or just to chat. We had a great visit and were even able to get in a "game night" with our husbands as well. What would we do without all of our friends? I am so lucky to have so many people that I can call my friend.

Now I have returned the the mountains along with bags of art supplies and I know many of them will never be used, but when the inspiration comes, you just have to have the right stuff, don't you? I am going to try to get a few collages and some button bracelets done before we leave again to put on consignment at Embellish. I am still struggling with the gel pendants and have one more thing to try before I officially give up.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Busy at Work

I haven't posted for a while because I have been busy making things. Even though I brought half my studio supplies with me(don't tell Stan), of course, there are many things that I am without. Despite the limit of supplies, I have been able to do a few more things to put on consignment in a great shop up here in the mountains called Embellish. Last week I delivered about 30 pendants, most of them seen in an earlier post. Some of them are soldered while others are made with a tray and resin. I am not sure which process I like better. I made the collage posted above here on a canvas that I started for something else, but was too small. I re-gessoed, painted and added the bird image and the collage elements. I am very pleased with how it turned out, but of course any more canvases that I have are in Tucson along with other bird and botanical images.

I also made these cute wallhanging/picture frame things using foamcore board. It is very light weight and easy to work with . The hardest part is cutting it! I think they turned out cute, but once again, it would have been nice to add some fabric and other ribbons that I have at home. I was pleased that other than the twill tape that I bought at Wal Mart to hang them. I used only items that I already had! WOHOO! I actually used some things that I probably purchased 10 years ago! Well maybe not that long, but you know what I mean!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Hummingbirds & Sunflowers

The monsoon rains have begun and for some reason this year the wild sunflowers have begun to bloom early. I can't remember ever seeing sunflowers in July! They are definitely not at their peak, and hopefully there will be a "peak" even with this early bloom. The Rufous hummingbirds have also made their appearance and I caught a few good shots of them guarding the feeders outside the window. We don't seem to have as many of them at our feeders this year, but my neighbor, Phyllis, has zillions of them I guess they are all hanging out at her place. Speaking of neighbors, we have some new ones and last night we had a small pot luck at our house. I made pasta with Sicilian sausage, Theresa brought a delicious salad, most of it fresh from her garden and Phyllis brought a homemade lemon meringue pie - only my favorite! It was all delicious, especially the pie. Maybe that is how she's keeping the hummingbirds around her house?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Back to the Cool Mountains

Just spent a week in Tucson catching up on boring things like appointments, shopping, going through the mail, but also got to have coffee or dinner with friends and catch up with them as well. I came back with a head full of ideas of things to make or do and I will probably have to stay awake 24/7 to do half of them. I'll have to write them down so I don't forget. This preoccupation with all of those things caused me to fall off the deck stairs and skin my knee on the cinders! See what happens when you don't concentrate. I tore a big hole in the knee of my BEST (and most EXPENSIVE!) yoga pants as well as several in my skin! Thankfully, that was all that I did and the skin will heal eventually. In the meantime, my knee is frightfully ugly and I am working on concentrating more and dreaming less.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Lavender Festival

I've finished working the first four days at the Lavender Festival and I have one more to go before my official retirement! It has been fun. The farm is beautiful and just being around all the lavender is relaxing. People who came were all quite impressed and appreciated the whole experience. One day, I worked part of the day in the kitchen preparing sample plates for the cooking demonstrations. I also worked at the cash register, in the store, and at the gate. I harvested my first lavender plant and made some cute little sachets with fresh lavender in them to sell as well. Yesterday, after work, I went to take some pictures. The sky was beautiful, but it was quite windy. I'll have another chance on Thursday. I did get this good one with the bee on the plant though!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


This will probably sound silly to most people, but I am very excited that I finally got my hollyhocks to bloom! I planted several from seed behind our cabin and the plants came up, all looking quite promising. I spent much time thinking about how all of these beautiful flowers would look blooming on the back wall of our cabin. Well, that was 5 years ago! Over the years they died off except for this one plant that I have been nurturing along and at times have been quite rude to. When we arrived here a few weeks ago, I noticed the plant was quite green and there appeared to be buds on it. I waited patiently, talked nicely to it once again and 2 days ago, I was greeted with a flower! Now there are 3, with more to come I am sure. So I guess this is a sign that I shouldn't give up and probably shouldn't have ripped the hollyhock in the planter in Tucson out shortly before I left and thrown it away. Who would have thought I'd have to wait 5 years?

Sunday, June 21, 2009


Well, the wind continues to blow here "on the mountain" as they say around here but, I have been busy as you can see. I made 23 glass slide pendants, actually 25, but 2 of the slides cracked in the process. The pendants on the top right are made with metal trays and Diamond Glaze. I have trouble with air bubbles using the glaze. Even when it is poured and looks smooth as glass, five minutes later there will be bubbles. I don't shake it and I have done everything I can think of to prevent that from happening. Any suggestions?? And by the way, the "coffee diva" is one that I am keeping for myself!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Spring in the Mountains

We took our first mountain bike ride of the season today and it was gorgeous! The bright green leaves on the trees with the sunlight shining through was captivating and I found myself wanting to stop and take pictures everywhere. All the stopping, was probably good since neither one of us had been on our bikes all winter. It felt good to get out in the fresh mountain air!

Sunday, June 14, 2009


Thank goodness for yoga at the end of the day that's all I have to say!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Windy day

Today was a rather windy day. We even had rain after lunch which I know Carlanda would have loved! Unfortunately, it didn't last long enough to get myself to the loft with a good book and take a nap. I worked most of the day today on scrapbooking and journaling a road trip to Texas that we took in April of '08, and yes, I am a little behind. I thought I'd better get caught up before we go to China. I got a job today too - working at the Lavender Festival in Concho, AZ at a Lavender Farm - I'm only working for 5 days so don't anyone panic - especially not me!

Friday, June 12, 2009


Today I planted flowers to perk up the sunburned plants that I brought to the cabin from Tucson. They are much happier and perkier here. As we drove in, I think I heard them shouting, "we're here, we're here!" or was that me? I posted a picture because I know reading is much more interesting when there are pictures. Anyway, once the planting was done, I became the white tornado inside, swept and mopped all the floors, dusted, and vacummed most everything including the places no one ever looks! The place will be ship shape soon. Tomorrow, we'll work on the window cleaning. Does anyone do windows??

Thursday, June 11, 2009


Well, here it is, I've posted the header! I bought the piece of old tin from a great scrapbook shop in Pinetop, AZ called Embellish. The dried flowers are sunflowers that were all over the mountain last fall and the dried pods still dot the landscape in some places. The rusted tin bird and bird house have been hanging around here for a few years just waiting for the right project.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


I realized at the end of the day, that today was quite uneventful. It was relaxing though. We ate lunch at our new favorite lunch place on the mountain-Cafe Bocado, went to a farmer's market, bought some plants and transplanted some sunflowers that sprouted in the driveway. I did work on a banner for the top of this blog, but it is drying so that will have to wait. A day just the way I like them. Do what you want, when (and if) you want.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Wow, here I am in the blog world. There's a first time for everything and this is my first post. I also signed up for an etsy account today. I guess this is a big day! This is something I have been thinking about for a long time and just decided today was the right day. We are at the cabin in the mountains and it's windy outside. The weather is cool, but not too bad. I should be cleaning the floor and calling my mother, but here I am. OK - I'll call my mother!