"One sees clearly only with the heart. Anything essential is invisible to the eyes." -The Little Prince - Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Monday, May 28, 2012

10 Things and a Piece of Artful Beauty

10 Truths You might not know about me. Photograph follows tomorrow.
  1. I had reoccurring nightmares my whole life. It was of being in a car going up a very very steep hill. The car turns over backward. I never could figure out where it was or why it was until I moved to San Francisco. I made myself learn to drive on the hills to overcome my fear. It is a good thing because I can drive where I live, now, and I know when and where my dream came from. I was about two years old in the car with my grandmother who loved me dearly and I was afraid of going up steep hills. I have seen the exact place I saw  in my dreams, near here. Mystery solved.
  2. I love Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz. It took a long time until I discovered that all I ever had to do was click my heals and I would be home. The power lives inside us, always.
  3. My bluejeans set off alarms at Barnes and Noble. I have worn them more than 100 times and washed them as much. Whatever it is does not wash out.
  4. I love to write stories. I love to live stories.
  5. I designed a classroom in a box. It is a large wooden structure which is a puppet theater and a blackboard and there are hooks inside to hang up all of the painting smocks. I have an old travel trunk with drawers full of art supplies and places to hang costumes on built in racks for hangers. I have lots of props and puppets hanging around the top inside.And a box full of musical instruments. Art should be in every persons life. It is crazy that that is the first thing that is cut from the budget. I am a traveling show. This time I landed for 6 years at this school and still going strong. Just use your imagination.
  6. I love being able to download books onto my 4th Kindle. The last one is a Kindle Fire. I was one of the first users of the Kindle. I live 75 miles from the nearest bookstore which is the one I set of alarms in every single time I go there. I have thousands of real books. I love books and I love to read.
  7. When I want to know something or how to do something I  get a book and teach myself.
  8. The most wonderful thing I have learned in my life is how to learn.
  9. My father used to tell me to create my own excitement and to let my conscience be my guide, It was like having Jiminy Cricket for a Dad. I listened to him. When I saw the film Pinocchio it stuck in my mind. The temptation to join the theater is always a great thought. My life is like a theater. Sometimes I just want to close the curtains and be whatever I want and really am.
  10. I love my family and my friends and sometimes I try to love my enemies, too. My cat is my constant companion; he is a crazy baby kitty, still.

I could live anywhere I choose, within reason, of course. I choose to live on top of this mountain. Heather Masse sings "Over The Mountain." where one can be free. This says it all.  

Now for the best part. . .My friend Sara sent a surprise in the mail. I sure needed a pick me up the day it came. Funny how that happens, sometimes. I have been trying to work out a design problem and am unable to make up my mind so I go in circles and never get anywhere, lately.

Above is on the outside table.(FROM SARA) A handmade book some hand spun yarn which is full of yellow feathers and tiny pieces of paper spun into the black and white fibers. Way too cool. A tomato shaped pin cushion. . .fun stuff. And. . . what I am experimenting with today.

The amazing art piece with happiness written all over it.

Click on the photographs to see the detail of the stitching.

I am thrilled to be the recipient of this.

It is just beautiful and I will treasure it always.
Thank you Sara!

xoxoxo to all of you!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

They go. . .

I know you must be thinking. . .
where is the fiber art, right?
Trust me
it is in the works. . .
I took a photograph of another art piece
this morning.
I then treated it with
textures and brush stamps.
I have a new logo stamp (watermark) which I created
in Photoshop elements, too.
Kim Klassen's Beyond Layers
class is a challenge.
I am learning lots of new things.
The funny thing is. . 
is that I worked very hard to get super sharp
images and now I am softening them using the
techniques for the week.

hugs to everyone xoxox!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

They weigh nothing at all. . .

"Forget you are forgetting. . .
'How about a place where things are as light as the breeze,
where things have no weight, where there is no remorse?"
"Yes," . . .
"a place where things weigh nothing at all."

words are Milan Kundera's
The book of Laughing and Forgetting

That place is here.

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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

How To Draw

Common objects
things you see
every day
we tend to forget
what they are called
this is a good thing. . .
just look for the shapes
look at the space
between whatever 
it is called
how easy?

Texture used in this photo is shine from K Klassen.

Just keep looking
until you see.


Friday, May 18, 2012

Lightness of Being

I see us, two little  girls sitting on a handmade table just showing off our pretty dresses in the photograph that is stuck in my mind. Toeheads is what they called us, explorers of the whole world is what I thought of us, even though it was just our own back yard. She would catch honey bees in her hand and never get stung. She loves nature.

My best friend is my sister. Her nick name is Twirly, she loves to dance.

I always feel lonely, you know what I mean, like something is missing.
We live across the entire country from each  other. 
My sister is the beauty queen of the family. She won the most beautiful baby award. That started it.
She was homecoming queen, Miss whatever town, Songleader instead of Cheerleader, etc. You get the picture.
We have traveled all over the world together and have seen almost every Vermeer painting together.
Last week I wrote about mothers, today it is sisters.
I am tall and thin and she is short and very thin. She weighs 95 pounds. That is why I am writing this.
I would not want to miss the chance to tell the world about her. Even if it is just a little bit.
She is a breast cancer survivor.

She is getting lighter and lighter and lately I worry that she is going to just float away.

I throw out a string across the universe to tie her to me, just in case I need to pull her back to this verdant place we humans call home.
She makes me laugh.
She makes my cry.
Being near her makes  me whole.

I wish you all a very nice weekend. xoxoxo

Thursday, May 17, 2012

What's On Your Table?

This morning, I am off to the end of the year Pic-nic
at the school.
Child As Artist certificates to give out!
I took a couple of snapshots of my kitchen table
covered with my daydreams.

Hope you are having a great week!

Revisiting Knit Cafe book which I dearly love. . .
I am looking for some more colors from my stash. . .
Mohair HMMM
Have you seen the New Vogue Knitting Crochet?
I am not a crocheter but the cover blew me away.
Cat Koyle's LaLa Scarf is a fantastic pattern, so I am making
another, soon.

Revisiting more Last-Minute Knitted Gifts
The pattern for 
Big Lace Scarf
is perfect for the Magnolia Handspun.
Who cares if it will soon be hot.
I am thinking about the fall while I am enjoying the 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Part II for today. . . past and future

A Polaroid of my minds eye.

Quilt design.

is it temporary?

deja vu all over again?

Danish Modern . . .
pop art?

What are we saying?


marching up and down?

Carried forward on the Wings of Delight?

I like this perfect package.

Which first?

Good day!
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Remembrance of Times Past

In a very large hatbox I keep a collection of stitching pieces I have
collected. I grabbed a few to share today.

Hope everyone has a day to remember. xoxo 

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Monday, May 14, 2012

Try Try Again

You know how it is when you are just not satisfied?
Well, I wasn't.
So I decided to try to get this right.
I used my white board set-up to capture
more light. Not enough on this rainy day so I set-up
under my dining room chandelier.
I got out the tripod and just focused on the flowers
Steph sent to me. I LOVE the flowers.
I tried all of the techniques suggested.
It has been fun and I feel better about this, now.

I love this one, too.

I am pushing myself to the max.

Hope you are having a nice day.

My love goes out to Sara!

to you, too!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Beyond Tender Buttons

I spent the afternoon working on this photograph yesterday
never feeling it was quite right. I kept thinking about my mother
and my daughter
and my friend Sara's Mother.
Sara's Mother passed away in the night before. We had just talked
by e-mail the day before. That was a shock that sent my spirit
plunging. I had spent the afternoon with my mom right after we talked.
Sara was on her way to visit with her mother and that was the
last I heard until the sad news. I am so glad I spent the day with my mom.
It is a very hard thing for me that she is not living here with me anymore.
I struggle with this every single day. The sadness is hard for us both.
It is always the little things that matter the most, isn't it?
Mom has physical problems that are beyond my scope of caring for her needs.
Tomorrow is Mother's Day.
We are taking her out to breakfast and a nice visit.
She wants to be back to her new home at the care center before 1:45 pm.
They are having a party for the residents. That makes me smile.
She has lots of friends, now. That makes me smile.
OK back to the photograph. I wished I had some flowers to photograph instead
of the silk scarf thingy.
My honey came home with a large box full of flowers from my sweet daughter.
What a nice surprise that is. Am I lucky or what?
Below are the flowers and what I did with one of them for the assignment
from Kim Klassen. I am so glad I decided to take this challenge for the year.
It helps me to think about other things.

I hope that all of the mothers that visit my space have a very wonderful day!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Guinea Hens and A White Dressed Lady

Guinea Hens? Did I tell you about my guinea hens? Let me think. . . Well, they were the cutest things, so graphic. I loved the black and whiteness of them with the red top knots. The noise they make is very different from my other chickens. One day they were wandering about the woods and that was quite normal for them. When evening would be coming soon they found the way back home and would join the rest of the chickens to climb up the ramp and go inside the chicken house. I would lock it up at night.
We have chicken hawks and falcons that fly above this mountain. The critters would run to hide and make quite a commotion.
Well, the one day I started to tell you about was unusual in that they did not come home to roost. I looked for them in the woods and I thought I could hear them. They were really gone.
For a year I missed them. One day, here they come, babies following behind them or should I say between them. I was so happy to see them.
Another mystery to think about.
This place is supposed to be haunted. It has been said that there is a female ghost who walks on our road at night. Many people say they have seen her. The thing about night around here is that it is darker than the road that goes over the top of the mountain at Yosemite. The stars are amazing here and there.
Once,my honey turned off the lights when we were heading for the other side of the mountain in Cali.
That scared me half to death. I know every single bump and rut in the road here and it is possible to close my eyes to drive it. But I do not do that. Besides, I might come across the lady in white and that would be the end of her.
Thank you to those who responded to my soul bearing post last written. I really appreciate what you had to say. I thought about it all and realized that perhaps I do reveal my true self all the time.
Being a bit Zany, once in a while, I do that. It is OK. I think about being free to be me and you.
Last night I folded some white felted wool and dyed it red. No photo's yet but that will come soon.
Gardening is high on the list of things to do if it would just stop raining. It did stop, for now.
My kids in class are way too fun. We had much interest in working on the shadow puppet show today.
Next week is the last day picnic. Can not wait. It is always fun.
I drove through town on my way to school this morning and it is really being done up nicely for the tour.
There is going to be music at the old train station. Lots of food and festivities. People come from all over to enjoy the day. The coolest house, I think, is the one that has a room dedicated to the Masonic Lodge and brotherhood. It is unbelievable. It reminds me of Alexandria, Virginia. If you have ever been there you know what I mean. This house was built by one of the first millionaires in the area. Victorian of course. That was when a million was like a billion, today.
OK, I have rambled enough for this day. I just wanted to thank everyone, again.
Now, I need to go read my e-mail to see what the assignment is for the Beyond Layers class and then think on that for a while.
I hope you all have a nice Friday, tomorrow. xoxox

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

So Afraid. . .

Why am I afraid to tell you who I am?

This is a ridiculous question I am asking myself when I think about how much this blog means to me at this time in my life. Once in a while, I contemplate whether I should just stop this whole thing. Do you ever feel that way, too?

I teach children art in an area of the country that needs all the help it can get. Once in a while, this gets me down, as well. I can understand now, how people can lose their spirit. When you see what I see every day, what they see every day, you begin to feel hopelessness. I can see why communism is such a terrible way of life, in the end. We all need to have hope that in the future that we can see our dreams become a reality. A hope for the future is an important element in good mental health.

I just said, "that the area needs all the help it can get," but I do not mean as in a hand out. What I mean is that what people need is to know that there is a way to relearn or learn anew, a way to help themselves.

I see millionaire mansions next to a house that uses trash in bags to hold plastic on the roof to stop it from leaking. It would be condemned any place else. This weekend is the home tours event. If visitors would notice, like I do, I wonder what they would do???

This makes me heartsick. 

I am trying to find ways to become more authentic. I think I am thinking about sharing what makes me happy and what makes me sad. I think I want to show you my life, for real. All of the good and the not so good. I think I need to give myself permission to do just that. Maybe this is the fuel I need to keep going.

Do you have moments like these?

I wish you would tell us, too.

This is what I look like, or I did. I am older now. This is a snapshot from a calendar I was in once upon a time.

Monday, May 7, 2012

List What Makes Me Happy: for the Kim Klassen class.

Simple Eats
Revolution Texture KKlassen
1. When my kitten jumps up and touches my cheek with his paw. Or when I turn on the kitchen faucet and he runs in and cries to have me wash his face, twenty two times a day.

2. Listening to the bathtub fill while I daydream.

3. When a little child gives me a hug for no reason.

4. When my mom enjoys her life.

5. When my honey tells me how close he is to 10,000 games of solitaire. (He is going for a record) Pretty funny! He does this sitting next to me while he watches Law and Order,  I stitch while listening to a book.    

6. When an adult tells a popsicle stick joke.

7. When the dogwoods bloom.

8. The first and last snow of the year.

9. The sound of crunching snow under my feet while walking up to the top of the mountain to get to the truck.

10. Driving back up my mountaintop. There is no better place to be than home.

11. Knowing that I am free.

12. When I find a super neato bowl to buy.

13. When I resist buying it.

14. When I bring it home.

15. The jokes my honey tells about me buying bowls.

16. A turkey sandwich the day after Thanksgiving.

17. Finding a great Thai restaurant.

18. Eating sushi. How good it feels when the Wasabi stops burning.

19. Talking with my very funny daughter.

20. Declaring that for this moment this list is finished.

Somebody Did This

I think often when I gaze at some textile article
about the person who has done the stitches.
A real person did this.
I imagine that they did not make much money, either.
I appreciate the person when I think on these things.
This is someone's story.
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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Storyboard Fibers

A Storyboard about paper and fiber for
The Beyond Layers Class
with Kim Klassen

Blogging doesn't allow one to show things as might
be intended so I am including the individual

I find that I most enjoy taking close-up photography of what I see
around me.

I have restriction upon photographing the people in my life. . .
children at school
elderly people in the care center
frustrating for me
so I do other things.
I even took a class recently that I did not get into
because of that very situation.

I find the coolest things in photographs that I do not or can
not see with my vision the way it is right now.
That is a very nice amazing thing.

Little bits of things
is why I can not pass up
anything that is unusual
I bought some bags for gifts 
I kept them because I like to look at them.
Pretty funny!

This is one of the bags,
also, a Kantha.

Mango and papayas and strawberry chutney in the making.

This is my weekend.

Now I go outside to garden.

Hope you have a lovely Sunday!



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