Sunday, September 9, 2012

Life Changes

Temperatures have been slowly sliding down this week, low eighties earlier today.  When I let the dogs out a few minutes ago, I got chilly. There have been several torrential downpours the last week or two as remnants of Hurricane Isaac passed by.  Our crops aren't saved but some green is back in our grass and the flowers are more alive.  Life changes and moves on and changes again... 
Yet More Is To Be Found In Me

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Fairy Tale Wedding Dress

This has nothing to do with my work; however, I want to show this 1933 wedding gown designed and made for a British society woman.  The satins, silks, embroideries, and beads are gorgeous.  Imagine the hours and number of seamstresses it took to make this!Courtesy of

Friday, August 17, 2012

Gracie's Gift

My "adopted niece" graduated from high school earlier this year.  (She is Gracie and I'm Auntie Em)  She is a beautiful, talented, unique person and I wanted to make something different and meaningful for her.  In thinking about her becoming a young woman, I also began to think about myself at that age, about all females as we go from being girls to being women.  What might speak to her?  Might touch that spiritual Self?  Might help her find her path, her life mission?  This is when I began to think about the collage boxes and started playing around with things.  I wish these pictures were better, but the modge-podge was shinier than I was clever with lighting.  Here's the end result:

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


I've worked on several small things and also made some little collage boxes.  My carpal tunnel has flared up and I'm trying to have some fun without overdoing it.  My first box was one of those small unfinished wood boxes that are everywhere.  I modge-podged colored tissue paper over the outside and also painted it.  I reduced some retro images I had and cut them out.  I also typed a brief "guide" for housewives that was printed in a 1950s magazine.  I also used some small pieces of scrapbook paper, buttons, and more modge-podge....lots of fun! 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Long Hot Summer

Temperatures here have been in the triple digits  for weeks, the humidity and heat have pervaded everything, and I have truly cooled off only in the shower.  AND my allergies have gone wild!  I've been hot, sweaty, tired, sleepy, sneezing, blowing my nose, coughing, headachy....I went into hibernation and am just now emerging.   Weather reports  this is the hottest and driest summer we've had here since 1930.  Everything is dry and dead.  I am so grateful that we (and I) now have air conditioning, electric fans, and running water.  I have always been awed by the daily hardships, past and present, of just staying alive in the world for most people.  This summer has been a good reminder to me of how lucky I am.   

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Deep Thoughts

To get something you never had,
you have to do something you never did.


Isn't It Loverly?

I spent most of this day at my friend's house ( with a small group of (mostly) women/artists. Everyone brought flowers, grasses, berries, and so forth to dye fabrics with.  It was a beautiful, sun filled day on her decks with enough cool breezes blowing around to keep us all comfortable.  There was a wild array of  plants, foods, juices, and people talking, laughing, and pounding on the things we placed on our various fabrics.  Rocks, mallet, potato masher, all put to work to break down the plants and release the juices and colors into the fabric.  Then throw in some bits of copper, and roll and wrap with twine.  We gathered our small bundles of various widths and lengths and put them all together in a cauldron to cook...the waiting  everything soaks, stews, and stains for a week!  It sounds like a witch's recipe!  In fact, I had a scenario running through my head where we were all dressed in black, cackling, and working on spells.  (My inner life is so often more interesting than my outer life.) 

And then we ate.  The End.     

Friday, June 8, 2012

Individual Grannies

I tried to make each figure different and unique as all humans are.  It was fun to do and also allowed me the time to come to know each one and what they want us to hear. The strength and wisdom of women's words that emerged from a crucible of fire and suppression must be taught to others, especially our daughters.  We are the examples and carriers of that strength and wisdom.  If we do not live and breathe and model it, we fail.  Who can respect and believe in us if we are not willing to stand up and fight for our value?  We must take and prove we are a powerful force to be dealt with and that we WILL NOT GO AWAY!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Listen To The Grandmothers

I've been so busy that I almost forgot.  I'm not getting off this computer yet!  I did finish that one piece I've been working on for almost forever.  It's called "Listen To The Grandmothers," with subtitle "Wisdom Of Crones" and, TaDa!! it is:

22"  x  27 1/2"

Memorial Day 2012

My father served in the Pacific in WWII, but would never talk about it.  He was a civil engineer in his thirties who enlisted in the SeeBees (Construction Battalion) in the Navy. I have always loved history and, as a kid, would always find ways to try to get information about this.  I found out it was hot on Iwo Jima and those other islands, that he learned to drink beer  (formaldehyde an ingredient maybe?) because the water was so bad and would make you really sick, and that all his uniforms were packed away in the very back of a big old closet in our old farmhouse. One of my earliest memories (about 2-3years old), is sitting with my dad in our big old chair until it was time to give his aging and ill parents their medication.  When the one channel would go off the air, "The Star Spangled Banner" would play and a waving flag was shown.  He and I would stand up and salute the flag together until this ended.  Then he would give his parents their medicine  in their beds and then carry me to my bed and everyone in the house would go to sleep.

I knew he would often go the Veteran's of Foreign Wars but I just thought of it as somewhere he and those other men went to drink...and I didn't like it.  I knew he was furious in the 1960s and 1970s when the flag was burned and our country's government  and the Viet Nam war was attacked and demeaned. 
He and I had many discussions that always became arguments over war and peace and what was worth dying over and who got to make those decisions anyway....I saw him always participate in honor guards at veteran's funerals, even if he didn't know them. 

At some time when I was in grade school, he volunteered to put flags on graves in several cemetaries in our community.  He bundled up all the flags in our old dusty car and he, my mom, and all we kids headed out.  We had a very small and what turned out to be a usually incorrect list of the graves which should have flags. It took hours but we ended up having fun and, while I didn't learn much of anything about my dad's service, I did learn about respect and gratitude for those veterans of all wars who gave their lives.   We did it again the next year, and the next year, and it became our yearly job to put out and take down the flags.  Volunteers were no longer needed.  Over time we made longer and newer lists and came up with maps of locations and names.  This was a tradition that those of us who had moved out would come back to do.  The year so long ago when my father died in August, he had rested better at the end of May when his children went out and put up the flags.

My dad who would talk about everything would never talk about his war.  But I learned to honor these men who risked and gave absolutely everything.  I learned that my idealogy and philosophy of war and peace had nothing to do with the very real people on those front lines who were maimed, killed, or wounded in body and mind.  Today, in all humility, I honor my father and all veterans of all wars who gave and lost more than any of the rest of us can know. 

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Deep Thoughts

Aim above morality.
Be not simply good,
 be good for something.


Tangled Up In Blue

I've been kind of down and slogging along, saying "step by step, step by step..."  Anyway, as I was working here tonight, I thought of the following piece that I made several years ago.  This is exactly how I feel!

Tangled Up In Blue
19  1/2"  x  16  1/2"

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Whine, Whine, Whine!

Art Tragedy!!  I can barely bring myself to write this... I've worked so looong on this doggone wall to the place of trimming on the base before adding batting...(this is like remembering a bad dream)...I have flashes of scissors cutting through two layers in slow motion!  I've had to rip out some seams, cut some new pieces, and am now starting to embroider something I've already done...and that I had redone before that because I didn't like how it was looking.  Life, in the guise of myself, handed me a huge lesson in dealing with frustration and learning patience.  I thought I'd be posting some photos of this piece but, alas...!

In my time of shock and grief, I am brought to posting pictures of some more of my little pieces:


Monday, March 5, 2012

My Light Is Falling

We had beautiful weather last week, although there was a tornado about an hour from here where I grew up.  There were six people killed and one hundred some-odd injured.  It's an area that has always been lucky and doesn't have a history of tornados hitting, only passing by to other places.

I've had more dreams and memories of the past, of sun and storms, of changing weather and scenes and people.  Today has been dark and cold and my energy started to feel like that, also. This old piece hangs by my bedroom door for moments like this:

"My light is falling over the earth and slowly everything is blossoming
in it.  The hardest stones are opening like flowers."

Mother Meera, a holy woman from India, is responsible for this quote.  She teaches healing ourselves and our world, to love, to help, to be peace.  Something wonderful to contemplate today.


Monday, February 20, 2012

Deep Thoughts

In this political environment of greed,  I am increasingly sad and angry that we humans don't learn from our history, or to connect compassionately with our needy, our poor, our abused children, our ailing elderly.  And our leaders keep playing games to keep their power and positions by taking power from the people they are supposed to guide and protect.  We are not falling through cracks anymore...people are plummeting into the abyss.    We need leaders who are enlighted and believe in truth that we are ALL equal and have equal rights...and that to whom much is given, much is expected.  

Problems cannot be solved
by the level of awareness
that created them.


Oh, What Lovely Yarn We Weave

I'm still trudging along with my crone piece...It's certainly been practice in patience.  I keep running into unexpected problems with my fabric, in my job, doing taxes, and working in shorter periods to try and prevent a carpal tunnel flare-up.  I'm therefore going to put up a couple of yarn pieces which I hand wove, then used embroidery thread and beads over and throughout them.
10"  x  32"


Thursday, February 9, 2012

Deep Thoughts

Can anyone imagine
Moses, Jesus, or Gandhi
armed with the moneybags
of Carnegie?


Thursday, February 2, 2012


This piece is called "Thangka: Family Blessing" and was a gift to my son and his family for Christmas.  The image of Buddha is a transfer, the piece is hand embroidered and beaded, and it is 10 1/4" wide and 30 1/4" long.



Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Extra! Read All About It!

Just released in paperback.
The female figure in lower left corner is the
project I contributed.  
Can be found at or at Barnes&Noble.  

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Deep Thoughts

let me grow old
like beautiful lace,
cherished and treasured
and cared for with grace. 

  Lacemaker's Prayer

"Baby" Dolls

These photos show some of my "Inner Child" dolls which are around three inches tall.  They are made the same way the totem dolls are...although the words I use are more about children, wounded and healing.