Saturday, February 28, 2009

work day doodle

I call this one Pompous Guy. He looks down his nose at me. His eyebrows are arched as if to question the veracity of what I'm saying. The pinch of his lips suggest that he finds me a little repugnant. The slight smile reads as superiority when coupled with the rest of his expression.

I drew this from a photograph of a real person I found in a magazine. I won't give anymore clues to his real identity, since I am maligning him by my assessment of his facial expression.

He was super fun to draw. The only thing I didn't get right was his dead-on stare. In my drawing, my guy's eyes are a little too kind. Not so in the real photo. I wish you could see it. You might be amused to see the way his hands are folded in front of his chest in an open fingered pedagoguish manner. Everything about the photo reads pompous.

Friday, February 27, 2009

One for the Resume?

Recently, I've picked up some new skills at work. One of them involves rubber bands, a steady hand and a keen eye. Do you think I should add my new expertise to my resume?

Thursday, February 26, 2009

visual journaling

During Crafty Week I posted an entry about my decorating journal and now I thought you might enjoy seeing my visual journal...otherwise known as the place to paste all the other random paper bits I've saved.

The pages are arranged by subject or things that look alike or by color or by just any old pattern that makes me happy.

I sometimes sketch on the pages as you can see.

Or I might preserve part of an article I liked.

Contortion was the subject of these next couple of pages.

I've got lots of torn paper. It's time to pick up the glue stick again!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

In the pursuit of

For a while now I've been contemplating my home, looking for snippets of beauty to photograph. Take a quick look at this blog and you will quickly see where I find my inspiration to take a better picture. Her photographs are profoundly beautiful while at the same time they retain a simplicity that I find nearly impossible to copy. (I know, I know...she is she and I am me...but I want to see beauty in unexpected places)

Anyway....I was so excited when I noticed the light in the computer room the other morning. I experimented and here are a few pictures I took.

Nothing profound, but it's a start.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Real Simple

Real simple window display-cardboard cutouts of birds in flight suspended on monofilament teamed with cute spring outfits.

Anthropologie January 2009

Monday, February 23, 2009

everything you ever wanted to know about H

Hello, howdy, hey, hi, hullo,

A short history on the evolution of the letter H: The American Heritage dictionary says the letter heth originally represented a consonant h in Semitic languages which included Phoenician. When the early (eastern) Greeks adopted the Phoenician alphabet they used this letter for their h sound or "rough breathing." In the eastern Ionic dialect the h was lost. Later both western Greeks and Romans used an alphabet that retained the h and from them came the symbol that the Romans simplified to the modern form of the letter H.

In ancient Egyptian the hieroglyph for fence was most likely the starting point of the symbol we recognize today as H.The Proto-Semitic H appeared as:
The Phoenician H was represented by this mark:
The Etruscan H was:
In the Greek alphabet the H appeared in this recognizable form.

And finally the H in Latin:

Henry VIII by Hans Holbein the Younger

Beginning with H:

Names and Places: Hong Kong, Hitchcock, Haiti, Holland, Hoboken, Ho Chi Minh-the city and the person, Nathan Hale, Jimmy Hoffa, Hungary, Hawaii, Hammurabi, Homer-the cartoon character, the poet and the artist, Honduras, Honolulu, Hoosier, Harry Houdini, Hadrian and his wall, New Hampshire, and the Hamptons, Helene Hanff-favorite writer, five former presidents-Warren G. Harding, William Henry Harrison, Herbert Hoover, Rutherford B. Hayes and Benjamin Harrison.

Food: hashbrowns, honey, hominy, honeydew melon, hummus, ham, hamburger, hot dog, horseradish, herring, halibut, haggis, Hershey's chocolates, hot tamales, hoagies, herbs, and hen

The most famous, most used sans-serif typeface in the advertising world is Helvetica. It even has it's own documentary. My son Brandon and I watched it this summer while we were on vacation in Florida...cause we are weird like that.

This clip is really long, so you may not want to watch it all. That won't hurt my feelings. But if you love typology you will be interested.

Please don't make fun of us......

H words that we should use more often:

harbinger, hoity toity, hassle, hillbilly, harridan, hope chest, hootchy-kootchy, hushpuppy, harrumph, hodgepodge, harmonious, hokum, hindsight, hoopla, hippogriff, hinterland, hornswoggle, hipster, hurdy-gurdy, hobnob, hunky-dory, huzzah, hosanna, hyacinth, hooligan, halcyon, hooray, hopscotch, hijinks, hog heaven, hightops, harangue, haberdashery, hullabaloo

My birth year makes me a Horse in the Chinese zodiac. Here is what a horse is supposed to be like. I'm not sure this is totally me:

1918, 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002

People born in the Year of the Horse are popular. They are cheerful, skillful with money, and perceptive, although they sometimes talk too much. The are wise, talented, good with their hands, and sometimes have a weakness for members of the opposite sex. They are impatient and hot-blooded about everything except their daily work. They like entertainment and large crowds. They are very independent and rarely listen to advice. They are most compatible with Tigers, Dogs, and Sheep.

As far as I know, there is no goodbye word that starts with H so I will have to end this with a simple you and you and you! So long farewell!

I was supposed to name 10 H things that I really liked. I'm not too good at following directions. If you would like a letter to write about and would like to do as you're told....visit Betsy at My Five Men. And tell her I'm sorry while you're over there please.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

In times like these, it helps to recall that there have always been times like these. - Paul Harvey

Phone rings...."okay, I'm on my way"....because together two can do anything....

first stop-liquid fortification

second-Gramma's holds baby while Mother takes her shower

the little helper

third thing-getting a big pot of soup started-dinner
tonight and lunch all week scratched off the list

everything's better now-happy baby with his clean and happy mother

Saturday, February 21, 2009


I don't own this movie, but I watch it every time I know it's on tv. The characters are delightful. The family dynamics never tire me. I love the dialogue.

Ronny Cammareri: Chrissy, over on the wall, bring me the big knife. I want to cut my throat.

Cosmo Castorini: You'll have your eyes opened for you, my friend.
Johnny: I have my eyes open.
Cosmo Castorini: Oh yeah? Well, stick around. Don't go on any long trips.
Johnny: I don't know what you mean.
Cosmo Castorini: I know you don't. That's the point. I'll say no more.
Johnny: You haven't said anything!
Cosmo Castorini: And that's all I'm saying.

Rose: Do you love him, Loretta?
Loretta Castorini: Aw, ma, I love him awful.
Rose: Oh, God, that's too bad.

Ronny Cammareri: Loretta, I love you. Not like they told you love is, and I didn't know this either, but love don't make things nice - it ruins everything. It breaks your heart. It makes things a mess. We aren't here to make things perfect. The snowflakes are perfect. The stars are perfect. Not us. Not us! We are here to ruin ourselves and to break our hearts and love the wrong people and die. The storybooks are bullshit. Now I want you to come upstairs with me and get in my bed!

Grandfather: La bella luna! The moon brings the woman to the man. Capice?

Cosmo Castorini: A man understands one day that his life is built on nothing, and that's a bad, crazy day.
Rose: Your life is not built on nothing! Te amo.

Moonstruck, 1987 directed by Norman Jewison, staring Cher, Nicolas Cage, Vincent Gardenia, Olympia Dukakis and Danny Aiello.

Random work sketch that reminds me of how Johnny Cammareri must have felt sitting in the kitchen clueless as to how life had passed him by while he was worrying about how others would feel about his decision to marry Loretta.

Friday, February 20, 2009

give me your opinion, please

I bought curtains for my bedroom. But, I haven't taken them out of the package because I'm not sure I love them.

I had an orange floral pattern on a white or cream background in mind. I saw something like it in a movie or television show. I can't find anything remotely like that. Anyway my budget is limited. I don't think I could afford them if I could find them, since there is nothing like what's in my mind in any of the discount or chain stores.

What do you think? Keep or return?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

all these people are stoked.....

...cause it's Debby's last day of chemo! You go girl! You've made it through to the other side!

Sash-shay over to Bush Babe's to join the par-tay!

short visit+good company=fun

There was a partial family reunion last night at Rachel's home.

Brandon (in the middle) drove over from Atlanta, where he is on business this week. I stopped by after work. (I look tired don't I?)

It was nice to visit in person.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

stacks o'books

I cleaned out a drawer in my bedside table recently. Look what I found. A stash of unread books.

Some I remember where I got them and some I don't have a clue about.

A couple are loaners. I ordered two of the used ones from Amazon after reading something by the same author. Lots were discovered at the thrift store. One is from my daughter and one from my daughter in law. Looks like I have some reading to do.

Have you read any of these? Did you like them or not? Any book reviewers out there?

How about you? Do you stash books in out of the way places waiting to find the time to read them? What's in your stack?

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

because it sounded good....

...on this damp and dreary night.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

a guilty conscience needs no accuser

I bought a bag of my favorite Swedish chocolate covered almond toffee candy, when I went to Ikea a couple of weeks ago.

Upon returning home from work one night last week, I noticed this scene on the table beside my big plaid chair.

Me thinks the hand doth accuse me.

There is no witness so dreadful, no accuser so terrible as the conscience that dwells in the heart of every man. -Polybius

Saturday, February 14, 2009

J's Heart

I found this pretty Valentine in my mailbox today. It is from my friend "J." J is waiting on her second heart transplant, her third heart. We are the same age. Her second heart served her well for over 25 years. It is tired now. She needs a new one.

Here is what I recently read in the newspaper: "Second heart transplants are relatively rare. In 2006, the most recent year for which data is available, only 3.7 percent of heart transplants, 82, were repeat transplants."

Please pray for J. She has been on the list for over a year. Waiting is stressful.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Blicky Kitty's Kar-ma-thon

Blicky Kitty recently challenged bloggers to take advantage of Valentine's Day to spread the love around. He urged us to rise above any memories of less than sincere V-day expressions of love and fidelity. Instead he challenged us to "create a special Valentine's Day post where you give a really thoughtful, meaningful compliment to someone you know. It could be a loved one, acquaintance or friend. Also you could give a compliment to someone and write about it. Make a stranger's day by telling her she looks pretty in that outfit! Let someone know that you see something cool and special about them.

My sweet nothings belong to my son Daniel because he surprised me with flowers at work yesterday. When the FedEx guy came in with the box, I pointed to the back of the office and said "you might as well take it back there" meaning give it to Mandy. She has a boyfriend you see. My boss has a boyfriend too, but he wouldn't be sending flowers to the office, since he was already in Florida with her. So yeah Mister FedEx guy, walk on past me with that box. Imagine my surprise when he plops it down and says "it's got your name on it" and walks out leaving me with my mouth gaping. I went outside to call my son to say thank you because I didn't want to cry in the office.

My second shout out of love goes to my daughter, the new mother, who gave me a baggie of my favorite candy and a card when I went by to see the adorable new grandson last night . She always says the nicest things in her cards to me. She makes me cry too.

My youngest son came by this week. He is having to re-glue and re-grout the tile in my bathroom. Poor thing, he is my official honey-do guy. We had dinner together. When he leaves he always give me the big bear hugs that I adore.

Texas son Brandon will be in Georgia next week for business. He is making special arrangements to take a half day off so he can drive 2 1/2 hours to see his newest nephew. I think you will agree that there is something special about a guy who will go out of his way to see a baby not his own.

On the same topic, son Daniel drove 2 hours to see same baby for 20 minutes while mother and son were still in the hospital. Son TJ valiantly spent the night at the hospital awaiting the birth and then went back another day for another look at the new one.

So to conclude this Valentine's Day lovefest....I just have to say....I may not have a sweetheart of my own... but I have the best children in the world. I love you one and all!


Where do you find inspiration?

For some people it might be something they read or hear that excites their imagination the most. While these modes of inspiration gladden my spirit and quicken my mind, visual inspiration has the strongest impact on me.

At work, where I spent the better part of the day, the walls are white, the artwork is mediocre, and the job is conventional. When we aren't busy, I tend to get bored. It is then that I doodle. I practice writing metaphors....something I remain bad at despite the practice. I daydream. I do remodeling projects in my head. Mental escape is the name of my game.

It was that same tendency towards boredom that made this next project appeal to me. I read in a magazine that some crafters were altering old fashioned Rolodexes and turning them into mini scrapbooks. That gave me the idea to use varied images and quotes to decorate the front and back of Rolodex cards.

This project is not finished. There is much left to do, but you will get the general idea of what I am trying to achieve.

When it is done I might place it on my desk. I will be able to give it a spin anytime I need a mini mental vacation, look at the image that rolls to a stop in front of me and perhaps be transported to another day or time.

I am including snippets of paintings I love, parts of photographs, cut up greetings cards and inspirational quotes, sayings, puns, jokes....anything that "floats my boat!"

Here is a link about Rolodex scrapbooking if you're interested in know more.

This is a link to an altered card set on Etsy.

Ali Edwards has a great blog if you are looking for practical ideas for journaling and scrap booking.

A young mom, who is local to my area, has a creative blog where you will be sure to find a fun project or two is here. Her name is Virginia. I attended a fun class she taught about how to make a book of favorite stuff. I included my love of Sun Chips and movies in mine.

This scrapper's layouts are filled to the brim with crafty goodness. She loads product on a page like nobodies business. Her pieces are fun to look at. Check her out here.

Reminder: If you will be participating in Inspirational Places and Spaces Show and Tell today, please leave me a comment to that effect and I will post a link to your blog below.

Thanks for taking the time to visit my little spot in the cyber world. As always, your interest in my hobbies inspires me and my blogging experience is made all the better for your interest.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

a sweater and seven things ...craft week continues

Most of you probably know that I was making a crocheted layette set for my new little grandson, which I put the finishing touches on the day after he was born. It was presented to him the night before he went home from the hospital. He wore the hat and sweater home.

Only one bootie was finished so he had to make the trip home wearing socks only. I made the second bootie only to discover that it was smaller, neater and better in every way than the first. So I made a third bootie, which turned out better still. Now I am making a fourth in the attempt to produce a matching pair. I guess practice really does make perfect....or at least better.....

Keep your fingers crossed please!

Linda from Linda Mahoney Art surprised me with this nice award this week.

Thanks Linda. Please check out her beautiful artwork. I practically drool looking at her fabulous pieces. She has such a talent.

I am supposed to list seven things I love and pass the award along to seven artists whose blogs I love.

For fun I'm naming seven food items beginning with the letter C that I really enjoy:


Thai Crunch Salad from California Pizza Kitchen
Crispy Chicken strips from KFC (yes, I know it's bad for me)
Basmati rice with Coconut milk
Potato Chips
Crab Cakes
Dark Chocolate

This list is one item too long, but I can't choose which one to eliminate so I'm not....eliminating one!

I'd like to present this award to:
Denise at Look Beyond the Picket Fence-because she makes something cute everyday!
Robyn at Art Propelled-because she carves wonderful things and inspires and teaches me something new all the time.
Toni at A Spattering-because her bird studies are fantastic and her watercolor tips are invaluable.
Teri at Teri's Painted Daisies-because I've come to love her Sunday church sketches. They make a perfect start for the week.
Diahn at Art By Diahn-because I'm loving seeing Washington DC through the pages of her Moleskin.
Linda at Quotidian Curiosities-because she is a fantastic watercolorist...even though February seems to have put her on hold...hurry up spring...Linda needs inspiration to paint again

That is just six artists, but heck I named eight foods, so we're even!

Get busy, make something creative before the week is over and remember take a picture of the space that inspires you to be creative and share it on Friday!