Monday, September 30, 2019


I apologize for the cast shadow over these pictures.
It makes my old jeans look really dirty which they aren't.
ha ha
But I wanted to get something posted before you think I'm not here.
So tomorrow if I get better shots I will swap them out.

I wanted to try my hand at a bit of mending,
especially now that it seems to be so in vogue with lots of great books focused on it, 
and lots of cool pix on Pinterest as well.

Above I tried just the basics,
but it didn't do anything for me.
So I searched my Pinterest Stitch Board and found something I liked better below.
I also like the Indigo dyed eyelet fabric I found to use as background.

Sunday, September 22, 2019


The light has turned magical up at the cabin.
The air so fresh with the smell of pine wafting thru the air.
And the temp has finally dropped into the 70's during the day and the 40's at nite.
Down below at home is a different story.
Once again in the 90's this weekend.
The kids (my son and his wife) 
joined us this weekend and they pulled out the hammock
and took turns in it.

We took a 3 mile walk around our Lake Gregory
and identified 3 different  mountain native plants and 4 different pines
pressing the flowers and needles into our little books.
or as Google identified it a crayfish or crawdad.
First Zach tried his hand at capturing it,
then Nicole took her turn,
both unsuccessfully.
The little guy was about 4 inches long and looked so much like an ocean lobster.
And man or man,
could he scoot and turn on a dime to get away from us.
A first for all.
So much fun!

Monday, September 16, 2019


Chalk art by next door neighbor Jayden 
age 4

For any of you wondering how I'm enjoying retirement,
it's taken some getting used to.
The sleeping in, 
working with a trainer at gym,
changing my diet,
reading voraciously, 
rediscovering cooking and playing the piano,
slow stitching at nite,
lunching with ex co-workers and alumni,
hanging out with my daughter and her pups,
lots of gardening
and planting my fall bulbs,
playing in the pool with my grand boys,
and enjoying my husbands company - most of the time.
Ha ha!

But what I've noticed lots more are the small things.
Stopping to chat with the elderly in my community
and getting to know my neighbors,
watching the cloud formations when it's humid and threatening to rain,
watching cactus flowers open,
looking for dried seedpods of day lilies and using them in dried fall arrangements,
watching those day lily seeds push up thru the dirt after planting them,
playing with the babies in the community and watching them grow.
And noticing the sidewalk art of my next door neighbor
and having the time to stop and take a picture.
Wonderful moments everyday.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019


Recently I found out from my dear friend Suzanne Campbell,
our executive secretary at Whitney,
saw my son featured on a news program on the T.V.
My first thought was my son didn't tell me he was going to be on T.V.
and that I had missed the show.
(turns out he didn't know)
So when Suzanne showed me the picture of him she took on her phone,
it turns out this pix was taken at least 3-5 years ago. 
Zach was volunteering his time for L.A. Green Grounds then,
an organization that finds older homes and the elderly in Los Angeles 
who need help transforming their front yards into sustainable gardens.
This momma couldn't have been more proud
 to know this organization is still ongoing and that her son made it into the news piece.
Woo Hoo!!!

Tuesday, September 10, 2019


About 2 weeks ago I posted about my online class I'm taking with India Flint.
I'm so excited to show you that I've started my embroidery around the Eco-Dyed pieces.
And it's so much FUN!
I'm enjoying the process so much.
I've been stitching about 3 hours a nite as I've been binge watching Designated Survivor
and it's so hard to stop so I can go to sleep.  
What's really been rewarding is using only Eco-Dyed embroidery threads.
And what's been good for me is that I've been working very spontaneously
(which I rarely do)
not knowing what each piece will look like finished.
I like it!
Didn't know I would since I'm usually so controlling,
but I'm too impatient to get to the stitching.
As a result,
 I'd had to some undoing and ripping out,
but I don't mind since it's so gratifying when something looks "right".
And Quite Liberating!!

Monday, September 9, 2019


Eco Dye Artist,
Rita Summers of Gone Rustic in Tasmania,
is producing some beautiful pieces for sale.
I found her on Pinterest and couldn't resist buying a few of her works.

I especially loved this paper bowl that she stitched together 
then embellished with a bit of crochet.

I also purchased this sweet notebook.
It looks large here on the blog but in person is only about 2" by 4".
Rita adhered the Eco paper to some type of interfacing
 then Free Motion Stitched her lovely design on both front and back.
It's so precious!
Here you can see how she zigzagged the edges together.
I looked up Tasmania on a world map.
It's an island off the Southeastern bottom edge of Australia,
right below Melbourne, Australia.

It was hard to pick a favorite,
that's why I bought 4 pieces.
But I adore this next one.
It's a journal made with several different kinds of Eco Dyed papers.
Notice how she used waxed linen to stitch it together with.
Here is one of the inside pages.

And the last piece is this note card.
The purples and blues she got are incredible here.
Below you can see how she bound it with a figure Eight Stitch.

I hope you enjoyed seeing Rita's work.
She also sells Eco Dyed clothing.

Thursday, September 5, 2019


clay & bisqued stamps

If I was still teaching my Beginning Ceramic kiddos,
I would have liked to have tried out this adorable Berry Bowl on them.
I photoed this out of a magazine,
so the pictures have a bit of glare on them from the shiny pages.

You begin with this cardboard template.
Roll out a slab of clay about 3/8 of an inch thick,
then using you favorite stamping tools,
stamp entire slab,
then lay template on top and cut around it.

Let the clay dry out a tad,
then pull up the walls and score and slip them together.
Loving how the base is wider then the top lip.
After the walls are attached use a smaller stamping tool and roll up side seams,
for a secondary design element.

Use the palm of your hand to tap up the base so it's slightly concave or is that convex?
I always get those two confused.

I forgot how the magazine article said to shape the lip round
(I took these pix about 5 years ago and am just now posting)
but I think I would thump and drag an elongated piece of clay,
place it over a rolling pin so gravity takes and rounds it,
then blow dry to stiffen to hold that shape.
Next I would measure the size of the 3 lengths I need, 
cut each one, 
and  score them onto the lip.
after thumping, dragging and blow drying,
I'd try curving it into a into that 3/4 round then score and slip on.
For the cool handle,
I'd thump and drag a squarish shape slab,
pierce a hole for hand,
then do a bit of cool slab filigree work on inside of hole.
Of course scoring that on as well.

Even though I'm not teaching, 
I do have all my clay supplies at my home/studio, 
so I think I will give it a try one of these years.
  So stay tuned.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019


Several years ago I posted this very special cacti the first time it sent up a bloom.

Well this is what I found today.
Not only has the cacti doubled in size but it sent up four flowers at one time.