Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Works in Progress....

Well, after i finished all of the projects we had planned for my daughter's shop,The Paper Sparrow, i took a few days off from crafting. But in those few days i took a good look around and saw how many things i had started and then just sort of fizzled out on, or put aside for more important projects. So, it's time to get to work on some of my personal projects, like.... The loom dolls...embroidering the faces on the guinea pig dolls and stitching their ears on. And that new loom doll that looks like it wants to be a lamb...And there are always baby hats to finish and trim out with buttons or crocheted posies...

Then there is the wall piece i started for my granddaughter Lola, who loves the song: "Mary Wore Her Red Dress" by Raffi. And the sock and glove doll ideas i have as well as my beanbag patterns....

Not to mention the paintings that are already started on paper, as well as the ones i am formulating in my mind....Doesn't it seem that there are not enough hours in the day sometimes???

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Love those free range eggs!

Safou loves to be hand fed. And scrambled eggs are one of his favorites! Sorry about the dark photos. I get one shot with a flash, and after that he refuses to smile for the camera!
Enjoy your Sunday!

She Did It!

Well, The Paper Sparrow is officially open! It took many hours and a ton of hard work, but the end result is wonderful! My daughter Kate was able to have a soft opening during the monthly celebration of the downtown businesses in Troy called Troy Night Out. The Grand Opening will take place soon, complete with a ribbon cutting by the Mayor. From the moment the doors were open, there was a steady stream of well wishers, and serious shoppers made up of locals, friends and family. I know i promised to include plenty of pictures, but honestly i only took my camera out once, in the very first minutes of the opening. And from that moment on, we were so busy greeting customers, visiting with well wishers, helping to take jewelry out from the jewelry cases, wrapping purchases and serving refreshments, i never did get back to photography! And even tho i only managed to squeeze three pictures out of my camera, they are not very good pictures either! But there will be many more to come! I do want to say thank you to my Family. Everyone was so helpful and supportive in this endeavor, whether it was physical labor, prayers and advice, or really just being there. And i would also like to say that i am very very proud of my daughter, and so happy that she had the courage and strength to make her dream come true. There were plenty of folks who advised her that this was not a good time to start a business. But i am a firm believer in the fact that if you follow your heart, and do what you love, the Universe will support you and you will be successful. Both of my daughters have followed their hearts and have been true to themselves-Kate with her business and Carly with her new family and her massage work. My heart is so full of happiness for them both. My husband and i are truly Blessed....

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

So Busy...

Just a note to let you know that we have been busy helping my daughter Kate get ready for the opening of her shop The Paper Sparrow. It looks great down there, but it also looks like every free minute we have will go to help her prepare for the big day! She hopes to be open for her first full day of business on Friday, 4/25, which also happens to be the city of Troy's monthly celebration of the businesses in downtown, called Friday Night Out. I promise to take lots of photos and post them here as soon as possible! Keep your fingers crossed for us!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Getting Ready for the Big Day!

I'm spending the weekend getting things ready to go into my daughter Kate's shop

I just finished these crocheted flowers to adorn little jumpers sewn by my daughter to go into her shop

And I'm getting ready to tag this bale of turtles sunning themselves on the deck

Here is a closeup of one of the little girl turtles! They were made on a flower hand loom.

And this is Abbie Bunny. She is a little fuzzy lop rabbit i made on my hand loom. She is one of many little dolls made on the looms here. I hope she makes someone happy!

I'm very happy with her and i think she looks happy too!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Simple Beauty

I love pears with a pink blush. I think the colors are beautiful and i think pears taste better that way! I washed this pretty piece of fruit the morning for my breakfast and placed it on one of my Grandmother's plates. I thought it was pretty enough to take a picture...

Monday, April 14, 2008

Is that her tongue??!!!'s a strawberry!

What i did on my Weekend, Part 2

So Sunday we recoup from the busy day at the Bonsai show, and then later in the day we take a ride out to Great Barrington MA, to have dinner at Cafe Helsinki, and to see one of our favorite performers, Fred Eaglesmith. Cafe Helsinki is a very interesting place. It is very very tiny in size but LARGE with personality! I usually am not a night person, don't like to drive in the dark, and am not one to sit in crowded spaces, but where Fred plays, we go! My husband Bill travels in a pretty big wheelchair, and with that bar being so small, it is a pretty tight squeeze. But the folks at the Cafe do their best to accommodate us, which we truly appreciate. We had a nice dinner there before the show, and a few fresh brewed pots of some of the most delicious, aromatic jasmine green tea i have ever tasted. If you are ever in that neighborhood, check out the menu and venue! Fred and his band was great as usual. For us, his shows are always very therapeutic. Not only do we enjoy his songs and music, but he keeps us laughing in between the music with his silly jokes and stories of the road. Fred is also an accomplished artist, and you can take a look at his paintings on his website. So check out the Cafe and Fred by clicking on the links above. You just might become a"FredHead" yourself!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

What i did on my Weekend...

Bright and early Saturday morning we set off for the Mid Atlantic Bonsai Show in Kerhonksen New York. It was a beautiful morning drive thru lovely countryside. I think i enjoyed the ride almost as much as the show! Bill and i did not sign up to attend any workshops or lectures, so we puttered around in the Vendor area and then went to visit the Bonsai Exhibit. I brought an "allowance" with me, and easily spent it all! The vendor area was packed full of goodies-supplies like bonsai soil, fertilizer, tools, pots, and plants, both bonsai, and pre bonsai. I bought a few things for my outdoor collection-a few baby Japanese maples, a new flowering quince, and a tiny elm. But my favorites are the indoor tropicals. I bought a few more jasmine, a mini bougainvillea, a flowering orange cutting, a few young Serissa trees, and a Chinese Sweet Plum. The Exhibit area is where all of the show bonsai are displayed. Here are a few pictures i wanted to share with you... This is a Banyan Fig Tree
Here is a closeup of the trunk and aerial root system. Fascinating!

This is a Shohin Black Pine. You can't tell from this photo but this tree is only a few inches tall!

This is a Dwarf Blueberry, and it was one of my favorites at the show.

And last, but not least, here is a picture of my stash, nestled on the back seat of my van, getting ready to go home! It was a great day!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Amma- No Sweeter Nectar

This is a collage i made in honor of Amma, called "No Sweeter Nectar" The message behind it is, Amma's energy is so kind and loving, that the birds and insects are ignoring the flowers, preferring Amma's sweetness....

I found this little video on Amma's website today...Enjoy!

April Showers...

...bring May Flowers...and a new car! Well, new for me. I picked up my new, "previously loved" Ford Escape yesterday afternoon. It has 4 wheel drive, power everything, a 6 CD player, and a moon roof! This car will totally spoil me!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

New Painting

A favorite bird at the feeders

More Jewelry

My daughter suggested i take photos of my jewelry outside. So today the weather was nice enough to take the pieces outdoors and take some pictures.

This is a necklace made of thin slices of Epidote, with a sterling silver toggle clasp. The stone is the palest of green with little bits of brown and dark green deposits.

This necklace is made of chunky nuggets of clear quartz, strung on a handmade chain. The quartz crystal is slightly faceted so that it catches the light as you move. The quartz looks very much like little ice cubes. Great to wear in the Summer months!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

True Sign of Spring

When you see the bonsai trees coming out of the garage to sit in the sun for the afternoon, you know Winter is just about over. My tropical bonsai spend the colder months on windowsills in my home. My outdoor bonsai spend the Winter in the protective shelter of the garage, under my husband's ramp. I have a few trees that can be Wintered outdoors, but buried under mulch, at the base of my huge pines out in the back yard. The trees that are not hardy enough to withstand the cold winds and heavy snows spend a few months in the garage, where it is cold enough for them to go dormant, but safe from the extreme environment. The tender leaves and buds are emerging, and the Japanese Quince is blooming. These little trees bring me so much pleasure, i thought i would share them with you...
Japanese Quince

Japanese Zelkova

Mini Linden- a favorite. This little tree has heart shaped leaves

Box of assorted small saplings

Monday, April 7, 2008

Little Buddha

Little Buddha sitting under my Brazilian Raintree bonsai

A New Look!

Well, the new siding is up on the house. And yesterday the fence people came and took down the old run down wooden fence my husband Bill and i put in 20 some years ago, and put up the new white picket fence. It looks beautiful! And the fence folk were so nice to be careful of my lilies and rose bushes that have been growing around the old fence all these years. I think most everything will be coming back up again this year. I lost so many other old plant friends to the other construction work that has been going on here for the last three years. Today i can see the day lilies and ground cover pushing thru the packed down soil out there. They are so resilient! Next project is the new front porch, which should be happening any day now (just in case you were wondering about that steep drop off the front door step!) Finally after three long years, the "to do" list is getting short!

In the Works

I finally put the dolls down and decided to get busy with my jewelry projects. I need some pieces ready for The Paper Sparrow, and for a fundraiser for my sister Sandy in the next few weeks. So, here are a few of the pieces i have finished...

A bronze shell pearl necklace

A faceted Olive jade necklace with a carved new jade centerpiece

An agate cuff bracelet

a chunky turquoise necklace

A handmade rosary with rhyolite
and agate

Black shell pearls strung on a handmade chain

And an amethyst nugget mala (hand chained, 54 beads)
with a lemon quarts nugget guru bead.

Now all i have to do is work on my photography skills!