Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Favors

These are the special favors I made up for our Christmas guests. Each little organza bag has one Compete Natural energy bar along with a special "fortune saying."  These bars are made by my daughter, Karen and you can get them, too, from  They come in 4 varieties and each type is really delicious.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Ready for Christmas

We're ready!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Pygmy Palm Shadow

Picture of my Pygmy Palm one late afternoon in my living room. The sun and shadow were just right. My surprise was the tone of the photo, which was taken without a flash.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Winter Hat

It's amazing just how CUTE a teenager can look in a funky hat.  Wear on Chevis ! You can certainly pull off this style.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Precious Birthday Present

My sister is a skilled stained glass artist.  She gave me this beautiful piece for my birthday this month. We got it hung yesterday in my studio. 

This is an awesome and beautiful reminder everyday of the sacrifice our Savior made for each and everyone of us.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Camping at Lake Whitney

It's a beautiful time of the year to go camping in Texas. We spent the two most perfect weeks on the edge of the Hill Country. The leaves were beginning to turn and the weather was perfect.

Lake Whitney was so still and peaceful. It's such a large lake. I would love to have a pic of the dam but access was not good at that time of day.

It was much too nice to be inside working on my wild-haired women dolls, so I took all the trappings outside to the picnic table.

The Hill County Courthouse in Hillsboro is one of the many, many beautiful courthouses in Texas. We took a trip to see it as well as some of the antique stores around the square. In 1958 I spent one summer working for the USDA in Hillsboro. A lot has changed since then. Even this courthouse has been restored after a terrible fire destroyed most of it back in the 1970's or 80's.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Playing with Paint on fabric

Using my favorite foam chunky stamp - the pear - I've been stamping with black acrylic paint onto previously painted fabric. I heat set the paint, backed each with some white flannel and used running stitches to accent the boundries as well as around the images.  Now I'm just waiting for inspiration as to what to do with these.

This was my first experiment with acrylic paint on muslin. I used a home-made block stamp (an eraser covered with a rubber band). I also used rubbing plates and random painting. I overlayed with blocks of fabric, machine stitched into place. I plan to embellish with beads and other embroidery stitches and make a small wall hanging.

A Leaf-shaped Moth

How cool is this? We found this leaf-shaped moth attached to a tent. It stayed there all day and was gone the next morning. How incredible their design and camouflage.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

More Zentangles

I think I love the zentangles because it satisfies the left side of my brain along with the art form satisfying the right side.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Stacked Hearts

I call this zentangle "stacked hearts." It began with the use of a Fizkar plastic stencil I use in paper arts.

Sometimes it's hard to know just when to stop.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Zentangles in Color

The stained glass image was colored in with Sharpie pens. On the other two I used watercolor pencils and a water brush.

Friday, September 4, 2009

One more Tangle

This was a lot of fun. I get inspired to try new shapes by looking at the zentangles which have been posted online. I think my favorite shape is the large and small leaf shape and then the next is the circle which leads to a bubble look. I want to work on getting "movement" incorporated into a zentangle.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Oval Tangles

I'm finding this art form very fascinating. It's close to being addictive and somewhat meditative. Just seeing an unfinished shape or blank space excites my imagination. I think my most favorite parts are the checkerboard squares and the bubbles. I feel the left and right sides of my brain are working cooperatively here.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Doodling as an Art Form

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh, summer is just about over. The dry cooler air is coming to North Texas on a more-often basis. In the meantime, the garden is welcoming the last chance to show off its spender. While gardening is winding down and weeds are not flourishing, I have discovered this art form of doodling. I've been a minimal doodler......mostly straight lines and circles, etc. However, this old but new again style, named Zentangles, is fascinating. As the wise man Solomon said, "there's nothing new under the sun." He followed that statement with "all is vanity and vexation (or frustration) of spirit." Too bad that Solomon didn't have a Pitt Pen or a Micron pen to doodle on the parchment. He was chasing his 700 concubines and 300 wives anyway. No time for doodling.

The examples here are my first attempt at Zentangling. I did use a template to achieve the beginning circle so they would be uniform, but the rest is freehand. It's so addictive and easy to calories either. I'm using a Drawing Pad which is 80 lb. paper and a Pitt Pen. I find the Sharpies bleed through on most paper or cardstock. I'll try Sharpies on watercolor paper soon. Watch for coming examples! Thanks for checking in on my blog. I welcome your comments.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Double Purple Althea

Last year one of these oddities showed up on this white double althea shrub. I was so surprised to find a whole stem with open blooms today. Things like this always make my heart sing!!
It's beautiful how the double white althea blooms so heavily compared to a regular althea. I also have white and purple single althea, but they have never mutated.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Double White Althea

The Double Althea (Rose of Sharon) looks very much like a Gardenia, but without the lovely scent. It is a heavy bloomer in late summer. I received seed from a friend several years ago and began the plants in pots. The shrub is now about 6 Ft. tall.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Varigated Leaf Morning Glory

In the morning glory (Ipomea) family, this beauty has amazing varigated leaves. The foliage is as spectacular as the blooms. I first bought a plant about 10 years ago from a Nursery, but have saved the seeds year after year. They always perform with such gorgeous foliage and blooms.

Friday, July 3, 2009


Henrii (Henry-I)

Here's what's blooming in my garden now. This beautiful specimen stands about 5 Ft. high with multiple blooms. It's fascinating to watch the blooms form. They're elongated and orange and the next day they've opened, but the petals are straight. As the day progresses, the petals curl backward. Each bloom lasts for about 4 or 5 days before fading.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Early Morning Visitor

What a surprise this morning to find this little hairy visitor taking advantage of all the spilled sunflower seed from the feeder (above). This young Opossum must be living under our deck. This is the second sighting.

Friday, June 12, 2009

In the Sink?

From, I've taken the suggestion of our moderator, Jessica, to consider the usual and most accepted function of a thing and see if we can repurpose it. She allowed the use of one of her templates.......the kitchen sink. I've drawn this scene driving through the mountains of New Mexico with our little travel camper in tow.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Rain, Rain, & more Rain

It was a soggy overnight. We had a lot of hard rain and many lightening strikes. Fortunately, our area did not lose power. The lawn, and especially the fig tree, are rejoicing. To have a crop of lucious figs, it is essential to get a lot of rain in late June and early July......not easy to come by in Texas.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Points - a line drawing

Here's my drawing for today, "National Drawing Day."

Friday, June 5, 2009

Drawing Day 2009

The goal is 1 million drawings posted on Saturday, June 6th. That is tomorrow. I hope all of you out there on the www will draw at least one thing and post it on your blog, Facebook page, You Tube, Twitter or wherever you socially network.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Charm-Swap Necklace

This was one of the first "swaps" I've entered. I was so elated to receive my treasures today and immediately constructed this charm necklace with all the handmade jewelry charms I received. The Charm Swap was hosted by Cloth Paper Scissors magazine ( earlier this year. I made and submitted seven charms of polymer clay and beads. As you can see above, the variety I received in return is from quite a widespread aray of techniques.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

This is my uncle, John Dewey Phenix. He served in WWI. The oldest of my mother's brothers, Uncle Dewey as he was called graduated from Texas University as an Actuary. In this line of work, he helped formulate today's Social Security System, developed in the Roosevelt administration during 1934-35. Uncle Dewey and his family (wife, Lila Mae; daughter, Betty Ann; son, Jimmy) always lived in Maryland. He passed away at the age of 97, on February 7, 1992. My mother passed away the following day, February 8, 1992 without knowing of her brother's death.

I had 5 uncles serving in WWII from my father's side of the family. Some of them served in the shipyards of New Jersey and some were overseas. One uncle brought home German shotguns and rifles. I've often wondered what my grandmother was going through with 5 of her 9 sons in the service/war at the same time. Of course, without TV and instant news via the internet, etc. you only knew what was going on some time after it all happened. I'm hoping that letters were written and saved by their children and grandchildren.

My husband served 4 years in the US Army during peacetime. My brother-in-law was in the US Air Force during this time as well. My son became of age after the draft had been eliminated. I have seen a very distinct difference in the character developed serving in the military compared to so many of our young people who have never been that route. This may not always have been the case, but respect for authority and honor of God and country are values which cannot be hidden.

All of my aunts and uncles as well as grandparents on both sides of my family are gone now. We only have memories and photos. Let's take time today to remember the sacrifices so many have made for our freedom. This freedom is given by our Heavenly Father. He has given us (the USA) the victory for over 250 years. All honor and glory belong to the triune God.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Friday Garden Walk

On this overcast Friday morning, the purple larkspur just pop out in the garden.

More PINK. Actually this Oleander is considered a *red* one, but it shows up more pink than red in the photo. The swaying of the branches in the wind is so beautiful. Their fragrance is wonderful, too. Along with a fig tree, I always like to have an Oleander and a Trumpet Vine in my yard.

Our Oleander is about 10 years old. I would love to never trim it so it would always be covered in blooms, but we would have to give up access to our backyard through a side gate. So far, it has survived all the North Texas winters, but it is on the south side of the house. The branches can also be annoying when brushing up against the screen at night. You have to get out early here in Texas before the wind picks up to catch the flowers semi-still.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

I'm Lovin' PINK

This Dianthus is quite showy with its gray-green foliage.

These petunias are a mixture of dark pink with striations, light pink and a purplish-burgundy in the middle. I find Pink is the easiest color to incorporate into the Spring landscape.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Tall White Iris & Columbine

This beautiful white iris is the first to bloom in the garden. I was able to snap this photo before any wind, hail or rain could beat it up.

The columbine stayed still just long enough for me to capture this moment in time.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Welcome Spring!

The calendar says it will be spring tomorrow - March 21st. As I look at my fig tree just outside my home office window, I see that the new leaves have opened and am reminded of Matthew 24:32 which states, "Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near....." Even though in Texas we can even have all four seasons in a week, I do love the Sun Belt and get anxious to dig in the dirt and plant Spring color as soon as the weather begins to warm. I hope you are getting ready for Spring's arrival, too.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Blue Moon

Blue found me standing alone

Without a dream in my heart,

Without a love of my own............

Even thought the moon wasn't blue, the sky was and brought this old love song to mind tonight as I saw this bright beacon through the barren trees.

I'll be so glad when winter is over. How about you?

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Sunset Behind the Mountains - Paper Towel Art

This picture is made with watercolored paper towels. I first wet the plain white paper toweling and laid it flat, tearing it into several pieces. While it was still damp or semi-saturated, I began distributing different colors of watercolor and watched it migrate across the wet toweling. Adding different combinations of color in the same hue gave it a lot of variation. When dry, I began to tear and place the pieces until I came up with the above image. They are attached minimally to allow the tops of the pieces to float above the base cardstock. The finished size is 6" X 7".

Valentine Fiber Art Postcards

Inspired by the upcoming Valentine's Day, I made the following fiber art postcards. Each is 4" x 6", regular fabric, embellished with silk flowers, rubber stamped muslin and fused to siffy-felt with wonder-under. I backed each with plain white paper and serged around the edges.

Happy Valentine's Day

Copyright-free digital image on photo-transfer to muslin.

Red print fabric background. Rubber stamped greeting on muslin.

Puffy heart is of red embossed velvet, stuffed with fiberfil.

Embellishment is Squiggles Fabric Paint in Diamond Glitter.

Red fabric background. Cut out of Battenburg motif,

hand-stitched to red. Center heart is embossed red velvet with

tiny pearl beads. Addition of Diamond Glitter fabric paint to

accent shape of heart.

Heart fabric background. Rubber-stamped image defining

"Friend" fused to base and outline with metallic trim.

"LOVE" rubber-stamped image on muslin in top right corner.

Addition of silk flower with button center.