Wednesday, November 30, 2011


As we enter the holiday season, I am reminded that PEACE is really what is important.  There is a lot of excitement swirling around me in my work environment, in my family and in my community.  Some of it isn't really pleasant excitement, but necessary in some ways.  Some of the excitement is just wonderful and fun.  Regardless, I have been reminded (again and again) that it is not what happens that is good or bad.  What I think about what is happening is what makes that determination.  

My friend, Mary, gave me a card one year for Christmas that had this PEACE message.  I held it close for many years, knowing that I would find just the right use for it.  I framed it and had it in my office.  Last year, I figured it out a better use and created my PEACE series using acrylics, collage components, photography transfer and the words of this poem on canvas and wood.  I still have requests for these original works of art in varying sizes.  It pleases me that Mary's gift continues to give.

it does not mean to be in a place
where there is no noise, trouble
or hard work.  it means to be in
the midst of those things and still
be calm in your heart.

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This is Flaco.  He's my faithful companion and fearless guard dog.  I think he's pretty cute for a 96 pound beast.  We've been talking about getting back in the studio this week.  I'm enrolled in Flora Bowley's class and I can't wait to get my hands in the paint.  Flaco will undoubtedly get his paws and tail in the paint as well.  It just adds to the creative life.  He's bored with jewelry production.

Thursday, November 10, 2011


Today, I was running a few errands before I had to go to work. I hadn't noticed that the flowers are really blooming beautifully here in Fort Myers and the weather was cool and people seemed to be happy today until after my encounter.

I finished my shopping and walked into the parking lot. I saw this beautiful pink Volkswagen and as sickeningly pink as it was, it put a definite lift in my mood. It really pleased me to know someone felt good enough and happy enough to drive around in this screaming pink bag every day. No matter what their mood was, no matter how they felt, no matter if they were sick or well, they were driving around in this jewel. That takes confidence and it made me feel happy for that person. I had to leave to make an appointment so I didn't get to stick around to find out who drove it. But, whoever it is I bet their little world is alright.  Art is life.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Fall for the Arts at the Alliance!

We had a blast at the Family Fall for the Arts day.  The girls and I petted wolves, had our portraits drawn, played games, watched talented singers and dancers on stage, saw many friends and was surrounded by ARTISTS! The weather was glorious and it was definitely the go to spot for the day.  I love, love, love days like this!

The Alliance of the Arts' gift gallery in Fort Myers has a new crop of my mixed metal and stone earrings.  Go check it out!

Halloween 2011

So, for Halloween this year, I had double fun...   First, my friend and I hit the downtown streets to participate in Zombicon.  A world record was attempted to see how many zombies could show up in one place.  About 20,000 showed up.  As a "dead artist zombie", I got lots of comments with the paintbrushes in my hair and the canvas over my arm.  Everyone who attended had some sad story about how they had died.  My story was that I had inhaled too much lead based paint... a slow and painful death for an artist.

For Halloween with the girls, however, I adorned a purple wig and gold sparkling boots.  I had tried to channel Kate Pierson of the B52's, but there was no beehive wig available in Fort Myers.  I ended up being identified as some other Kate rock star girl that I don't know.  Oh well.... I do like purple.

Thursday, October 13, 2011


When I'm really feeling "free to do what I want" (thanks Mick Jagger), I end up with this sort of thing....  Need to grab that "free" feeling a little more often, I think.  This weekend is the great studio clean up so there will be space to have some fun since the rain keeps coming.  Studio time + rain = ART FUN!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Davis building

I forgot to post these really great photos that I took the night of Art Walk.  This is the Sydney and Berne Davis Arts Center.  There is an amazing light source outside the building that illuminates the street, the trees, the building, the people.... and casts the Latin names of Southwest Florida's plants all over the place.  The building itself is gorgeous.  Our friend Jim Griffith has led the restoration project and now it has been transformed from the old courthouse/old post office to a beautiful art center.  You can check out their website at  There's always something amazing going on there.  I love taking photos of the building.  It's a happy place indeed.

new jewelry display

At a shop downtown the other day... in a rare moment where I had caffeine in hand and no children in my car.... I went browsing for the first time in a long while.  I love thrift shopping.  Not only have I clothed my three kids and myself in fantastic finds from thrift stores, but I have also decorated my home and found stuff for my artwork there.  So, after staying away for a while, I returned.

 I get totally supercharged, artistically speaking, by looking around at the displays, the vintage ephemera, other people's artwork and broken, rusty stuff.  While I was there, I found this super cool printer's tray.  I've always wanted one to display my rubber stamps in the studio and have not found one at just the right price.  This one is lovely... very sturdy and the right price.  Now, it's home with me.  And, I've decided to use it to display my earrings!

I think it's super cool.  Tell me what you think?  Maybe I will put little price tags on the earrings....   Should I paint it or leave it in it's natural wooden glory?

Sunday, October 9, 2011

So, we had a lot of unexpected fun at Art Walk this past Friday. I thought we'd take the usual gallery walk up and down First Street, see everyone in town and find adventures along the way. But, as it turns out, we camped out at the Sidney and Berne Davis Arts Center and never left. My groom served as host to his students' one act play... twice.... and there were three fashion shows. The girls were long and thin walking on seemingly longer and thinner heels. Beautiful ball gowns started things off and then wearable arts ensembles and painted fabric (in day glow with blacklights) followed. It was all mighty impressive for our little town. But, the real show started after the tall beauties left the stage. The short beauties (about twelve kids) who had watched admiringly in the audience took over the runway and danced and put their own spin on runway modeling to Lady GaGa and Michael Jackson tunes. I realized at that moment that what our backyard needed was simply a long runway and a set of really good backyard speakers.

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dinner girls

Here's a funny snapshot of the girls and me.... Clearly, I need to get into the studio more often. We all sort of went bananas drawing on the table during our mid-week dinner out. I love seeing my girls immersed in the arts.
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Friday, October 7, 2011

Definitely making some jewelry this weekend....  yep.... definitely.  Got my new flexible shaft, got my crystals, got all my pretty things.  Making some jewelry this weekend.....  yep......
Ya-hoo!  We're heading out to the 3rd Anniversary of Art Walk tonight in downtown Fort Myers!  Not sure whether this will be a grown-up gathering or whether the children will tag along.  Either way, I'm excited.  I love seeing other people's artwork and getting inspired.  I'm especially looking forward to seeing the painted fabrics in the fashion show at the Davis Building.   Given the nice cool weather and ZERO HUMIDITY, it will likely well attended so I'll see lots of friends.  It will be a blast!

Monday, October 3, 2011

In the midst of living life.....  trying to sort out relationships, juggle career commitments, love on the children, dig my way out from  under laundry, manage a crazy allergy attack, and other day to day things....  we have been blessed by a mystery. We have two female rabbits.  Yes, they really are females.  We've had these rabbits as members of the family for about two years now.  And, we have now got three new family members.  How?  I have no idea.  I called our friend and bunny whisperer, Tommy, and made joking accusations about him sneaking a male bunny into our hutch but he denies it all.  He has pointed his finger at our unsuspecting nanny who "may have this sort of criminal mind".  Honestly, we are stumped... but thrilled.  This little surprise has really softened me around the edges.  These tiny little critters have grounded me this week and I'm thankful for that. And, I am amazed at the wonder of nature and how those tiny little ears are so perfect... just like when my own babies were born.  It's all good..... a mystery.... but definitely all good.