The creative and spiritual journey of a (textile) recycler. . .

I have thought about starting a blog for a long time now. I just couldn’t seem to get started. I thought. . what would I say, what would I do and really . . . . . who would care.

Last year I had the great fortune to witness a ‘happening’. As a spouse at a reunion (I know, groan) I was both an observer and participant. This reunion was attended by some of the most creative and talented people on the face of the planet. Really, no exaggeration! But many were holding onto life long insecurities. They didn’t think they were talented enough and embarrassed to perform in front of each other for fear of . . who knows . . . finger pointing, whispers, laughter, ridicule of some sort for sure. Once it was revealed that many shared the same feelings, the healing began. And I was the lucky one. I got to witness it all and benefit as well.

So, the message is that we all think we are not good enough compared to someone else, but we are. Don’t let your fears and insecurities stop you. We can’t measure our own success by someone else’s talents.

This revelation and the kindness / support of strangers has propelled my creative journey to a place I had given up ever getting to. Tho I thought my creative juices were dried up forever, they have merely been reawakened. Many thanks to all involved in my process, including in-part . . Victoria B, Mrs. W., Charles Mc., Claudia H, Mary B, Cindy G, Sandy B, Traci B., Kat C, and my IAA family. So, thank you. I dedicate this blog to all of you!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

List it Tuesday - Things I Collect

Todays Artsyville list is:  

Things I Collect....  haha, a friend says, "what don't you collect!"

Here's a sampling:




 fabric -
ethnic, hand-dyes, textured, wools, vintage, silks


books - 
artsy fartsy crafty type stuff mostly

 African masks

black dolls


rusty metal thingys

anything Asian


good friends

art supplies, 
which includes paints, inks, brushes, powders, stamps, stencils, etc


~ in the vintage catagory ~ 

 lacey bits


even more jewelry

 sewing patterns 


fabrics, yep old and new

aluminum trays


To check out everyone else's list, go to:

Tuesday, January 29, 2013


Today is a day of milestones.

Today is the first birthday of my number one little guy. 
How can you not fall in love with this dude??

He's been a joy, a blessing, a great source of entertainment,
and the love of our lives.

Presents are great but did you have to put that bow on my head, da-ad....


The next milestone of the day is that this is my 100th post!
Wow! Who'da thought...

This blog has been fun and introspective and a way to meet and connect with all of you.. people I would never have had any other way of meeting.

You've taught, supported and encouraged me in 
my attempts to be creative, 
through health issues, dealing with the multiple losses and all the other crazy things that happen to me.
You've just let me be myself... good or bad...

So I say thank you from the bottom of my heart.
I hope to quickly get back to really creating all of the things that are rattling around inside me and that you will give me your support and feedback then also.

So let's celebrate!

Leave me a comment telling me about your milestones..
it can be a life's accomplishment or a creative one.

On Saturday, February 9, 
I will select at random someone to win 2 more patterns.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

List it Tuesday - quick fixes for your home

Todays prompt from Artsyville is: quick fixes to make any room in your home look  better.... Quick, easy design changes that you could make to each room for an instant lift. Well, in my house, nothing is going to be a quick fix, but here are a few things that have been done, need to be done, will be done:

~ The upstairs bath needs a lot of help. There is a gaping hole in the ceiling where water was pouring in at every rain and snow melt, paint is peeling on the walls as a result of repeated rains, the floor is old and horrid. We recently purchased a new cushy and loopy bathmat and it has greatly elevated the room to pleasant to be in.

~ The roof was a big mess. There were multiple spaces where water rolled into the house. There were spaces, small, but spaces none the less that little animals and birds decided to take the opportunity to freeload and bring relatives for a vacae. It was not a cheap fix but quick in that it was a total tear off and rebuild in one day! Yes, one day start to finish.... gracias vatos!

~ The downstairs kitchen has had boxes off to the side that contained random stuff that needed to be put somewhere or pitched. Another check goes in the done column.

~ The living and dining room both are just a piled up mess. The contents are saved items from the flood and bunches of Pops' stuff that just needs permanent resting places.

~ The dining room, a.k.a. temporary craft room has become more organized and some things put in their permanent homes, but a long way to go....

~ We've been wanting to change out some artwork in den and finally replaced a piece with one that Pops had in his room :)

~ Pile of dye buckets on back porch finally put away in the proper place... till next dye run :)

~ One kitchen cupboard set of doors refused to close properly. New latch purchased and installed. Thank you dear....

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Flea Market Friday - painted book page

I could very easily become a hermit and never, ever leave the house. I do go for extended periods without the need to feel the sun or cold on my face. It's so wrong, I know. But that's me.

Thank goodness for the internet. Everything is so accessible and comes right to the front door.... Yep, gotta love it. So since it's so easy, I bought a few stencils recently.

I've been trying to get my act together, (still dealing with deaths), get healthier and trying to get the house and my 'creative' areas fixed up. So after a long couple of days, I decided to take a break and check out a new stencil. The image was painted on a book page that was left from a recycle project, then mixed with a few bits of images already on the computer and here's what I ended up with.... so far....

The stencil is the purple and green image in the center.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

List it Tuesday: Culinary Traditions

Unlike Aimee from Artsyville, who started this whole list making thing, I come from a long line of great cooks and bakers. I was at my grandmother or mom's side as they made with the pots and pans every day, and everything was fab-u-lus .... and never a recipe to be seen. That in itself is a drag because no one can duplicate anything they made.

Now I have major food allergies so I can no longer partake in the yummy traditions that I once did. I've had to create new traditions that are 'safe'.

So here are just a few old and new:

~ I completely forgot about this till just this second... every Friday night my dad got Chinese carry-out. That tradition started when I was just a wee one. 

~ When we were a two income family, my hub and I had Thai or Chinese almost every Friday night. Hmmm, I never thought about it till this very second.. but did you read the first one of the list?? Holy cow!

~ I make a mean tofu pumpkin pie every year for Thanksgiving... really.. it's delish. Even tofu haters love it.

~ All itty bitty bits of food that never make it to a plate get merged for a conglomerate nacho topping or get frozen and end up in a soup some time in the future. I'm a 'dump cook'. I admit it and I love it!

~ All chicken bones get tossed in a designated freezer bag, accumulated to some random amount, then melted into a yummy chicken broth when the need arises. Made some today and used a bit to cook brown rice for dinner.

~ Chocolate stars and candy orange slices started as a tradition when the hub and I were dating. It has morphed into having a few malted milk balls after dinner for special occasions.

~ When I'm really in allergy hell and steroids are my savior... my decades long tradition is a 2 liter of Vernors, a bag of black licorice and the biggest bag I can find of some crinkly type potato chips... before the allergies it was a big fat hot toddy (ding!)

~ And the most important tradition, I ALWAYS carry protein bars and have a stock pile at home, just in case I can't find food on the road or need protein during a power outage... yep.. I've lived on them for a week at a time.... more than once..

As usual, I had no idea it was Tuesday today until I saw the Artsyville post. ... so there is nothing pretty like artwork or photo to show with my list.... I gotta get a grip.... 

Want to read more lists? Go to:

Monday, January 14, 2013

Word for the year

I've been seeing a lot online about selecting a word for the year. I never had time to think about it.. Geez, I never even had time to read about it. I just seem to always be in the midst of some chaotic multi-tasking, multi jobs/projects sorta thing .... always time sensitive and never enough time. 

Why is that? No, it's not a time management problem. I'm actually quite good at budgeting my time. It's called realistic. And it's called unforeseen obstacles. It's just the other crazy things that get in the way...the unexpected...who can foresee computer crashes, computer hijacks, stolen credit cards and fraudulent charges, multiple week long power outages, health problems, twisted limbs, floods, deaths, ER visits... gosh, you get the idea. You can only budget so many extra hours or days into your timeline, but when it all hits at once, it becomes a holy crap moment. Sometimes that moment can last such a long time, and really wear a girl out.

For me, it's been a concentrated two year holy crap that seems to have finally calmed down. Thank goodness for good friends and a hubby that are generally around to help ease the tension when I most need it...and finding some really wonderful bloggy folks who really have no idea how much their blogs, contact and comments have had a huge positive impact on me. They've been a lifeline at times.

Life has had me stressed for so long now, that I almost don't know what normal or relaxation is. So you may already have an idea of what my word for the year 2013 might be. 

Just having it bombard my brain, trying to get me to get on board with everyone else has already created a sense of calm.

My word is 'peaceful'.

Dyeing fabric is peaceful. This photo reminds me that I need to do more. 

 .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Below are just a few blogs relating to selecting your 'word for the year'. 
If interested in learning more or jumping on board, check 'em out:

Thursday, January 10, 2013

List it Tuesday... is ba-aack!

Well, I guess I really needed that break. Our household has been wildly busy during and since the holidays.. and sometimes I think it's a good to step away. Thru it all I've tried to stay creative, even if just mentally. 

So, here's my list for the week. The topic is: What's New (in the new year):
  • working to create a dedicated 'creative space' to keep all of my painting mess
  • get that dining room table cleaned off (which is where the creative stuff is piled at the moment) 
  • working with a friend to develop some new classes... I'll keep you posted
  • reorganizing my sewing area.. badly needed...don't ask..OY!
  • new start at attempting to get healthier
  • (maybe) getting the nerve to show and sell some of my work
  • made new friends from old friends from 40 years ago...plan to maintain connections
  • car repairs completed ensuring safer craft supply pick ups : )
  • committed to using all the cool stuff I have to create with
  • been making new mixed media bits & piece ... and loving it 

I think it's fitting that my first post of the year is for 'List is Tuesday'. I have so enjoyed making the lists, reflecting, growing and joining forces with some really awesome artists. I look forward to the comments too... so don't be shy. And don't forget to swing by to see what everyone else is up to.

It's been a long day, it's late and my brain has turned a bit mooshy... maybe I'll add to the list tomorrow.

Happy New Year everyone!