Thursday, May 29, 2008

What I've been up to

The short answer is, "not much." I don't seem to be getting much done these days.

I've made another journal. This one is a gift for my SIL. I used a commercial batik for the outside cover, one of my hand dyed fabrics for the inside, and lots of handpainted paper. Rhonda brought her paper embosser over and I used it to make some very fun pockets and bookmarks.

I am signed up for a Mixed Media class with Sue Bleiweiss, but haven't gotten past lesson one. I've made quite a few tissue paper collages: muslin overlaid with tissue and hand painted paper, silk paper, silk roving and whatever else I could find in my studio. Washed with watercolors. I really enjoyed the effect when I started ripping the tissue layers to reveal what was underneath.

The colors seem very lurid in the picture. I don't think it's quite that pink in real life.

I've done quite a few of these in different colorways. I don't know how I'll use them, but I'm really enjoying the process.

And I've been working in the garden. Can you stand a few more garden pictures? First, our house on Memorial Day:

Next, my favorite echinacea, "Sunset":

And lastly, hemerocallis "Banana Girl." This daylily has been beautiful this year!

And I've been playing lots of bridge. Is there such a thing as playing too much bridge? I may be coming close...

Thank You, Fannie! (Long Overdue)

I received this ATC from my friend Fannie several weeks ago:

Isn't it gorgeous! Fannie is very talented -- check out her blog at

Thank you, Fannie, for sending me this beautiful card!

Monday, May 19, 2008

More Garden Shots

Just a few more...

A Few Garden Pictures...

May is beautiful here in North Texas!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Road Trip to Cleveland -- Part Three

More Cleveland Botanic Garden shots. First, a pink trillium in the woodland garden:

Azaleas in bloom in the Japanese Garden. I often sketched here as a child.

Of course, we visited the Cleveland Institute of Music. Chris is finishing his Masters degree here and coincidentally, this is where I took weekly clarinet lessons as a high school student. The facade looked very different, but the basement, where I took my lessons, looked and sounded exactly the same. It was very eery.

Rhonda and I drove through my old neighborhood and past my old high school, Charles F. Brush. Here's the front...

...and a marker in front of the football field. Rhonda thought it looked like a tombstone. Actually, the football team was pretty dead while I was there...

It's good to be back home in Texas, but I thoroughly enjoyed my trip to Cleveland. In my heart, I guess Cleveland will always be my true home. Hope I get to go back again some day!

Road Trip to Cleveland -- Part Two

One of our first stops in Cleveland was the Botanic Garden in University Circle. May is a beautiful time of year in NE Ohio, and the gardens were worth the visit.

We started out in the butterfly house. Hundreds of colorful butterflies zooming around...

This blue colored bird, a red-legged honeycreeper, caught my eye. He was brilliantly colored, with an iridescent cobalt body, bright red legs and a turquoise crown.

Outside, the spring flowers were blooming. This peony was gorgeous!

I included that picture because Brian and I are trying to grow peonies in our Texas garden. We definitely have peony envy!

The main gates into the Botanic Garden are pretty fabulous. Must be a fiber art piece in there somewhere...

Road Trip to Cleveland -- Part One

Last weekend my friend Rhonda and I took off for Ohio. Rhonda's son, Chris, is graduating from the Cleveland Institute of Music. She has been up to Cleveland many times to see him, and this was my last chance to go with her. It had been four years since I had been to my hometown (I haven't been back since my mother died) and I was happy to have an opportunity to return.

Sunday, our first night on the road, we drove to Memphis. We explored a bit, ate an Indian dinner and returned to the room. I needed to iron a shirt, so I pulled out the ironing board and iron. Rhonda calls this the "Lojack" model. The iron was tethered with a very short cord, and the base was bolted over the widest part of the ironing board. Very hard to iron with.

The second day, we made the short drive to Paducah. After a bit of a buying frenzy at both Hancocks of Paducah and at Eleanor Burns' store, we visited the Museum of the American Quilt Society. It was fabulous!

The third night we stayed in Columbus, Ohio, with my brother and his family. It was wonderful to see Andy, Jennifer and Dylan. They are perfect hosts, and we had a lovely visit.

Then it was on to Cleveland. Home of the Cleveland Browns, Indians, Cavaliers, the Cleveland Museum of Art and the Cleveland Orchestra. It was so good to be back!

I took the next picture for my brother Andy. Rhonda and I were driving down Mayfield Road and saw this van for sale in a car lot. I think Andy needs it. It's perfect for the Browns fan who has everything...and he does have quite an impressive collection of Browns memorabilia. But apparently he doesn't have EVERYTHING!

Chris lives in the Little Italy section of Cleveland, just a couple of miles down the road from the house I grew up in. As a teenager I took clarinet lessons at the Cleveland Institute of Music, and I can't tell you how many times I drove down Mayfield Hill. It's a wonderful neighborhood, full of friendly people and great restaurants.

Sign up for my studio newsletter