Tuesday, March 30, 2010

try handmade

My little foundling has been featured in the latest posting of try hand made's going green section.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Small Press Book Fair Today

Aster and I are going to shuffle to Buffalo for our very favorite event and then get our butts back to Rochester in time for the party art Thread!

Friday, March 26, 2010


I am waitning for our new gas range to arrive! I actually used the old one yesterday to boil water for pasta- right in the middle of the kitchen, completely off level, but it worked. I painted the walls around the new range so it will be a nice as can be. I can't wait to be able to really cook.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Window!

It's like night and day.

Finally I have a picture of Thread's window display. Of course the display looks much better in person- so you have to come by the store. I am very excited about installing the work tomorrow and really looking forward to the party on Saturday (7-9)
Thread is open Tuesday - Saturday 11:00 - 7:00
and Sundays noon - 4:00

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


I am busy working on cards and other items to have for sale at Thread. I really love this store, the energy is wonderful the space is gorgeous and the stuff they sell is really cool! We finally have a sunny day so I am going to dash over there to take a picture of the window display.
This is a picture of a flower I made in the same way as the skirt. I have four of them in a vase in the window. I am hoping to make some more and have them for sale.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

19 years

Allen and I were married on this day 19 years ago.
19 is my parents' "lucky" number. It never really struck into my life, but they have a long list of dates and addresses and other numerical life items that include the number 19 and have been fortunate for them.

This 19th year of marriage was not the worst ever in our marriage, but I certainly wouldn't want to repeat it. Allen was in the hospital for two weeks and then had to recover from abdominal surgery, I went though some difficult decisions and quit my teaching position in order to focus on my family and art. Gage has been sick -(by the way the biopsy results showed everything normal and fine. He is just so sick still, we just don't know what to do next). As always, I do believe it could have been worse - but a year filled with fortune - no- not a particularly lucky year for us. So moving into the twentieth year of a wonderful marriage is something to which I am looking forward, but still trying to take it one day at a time.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Vintage Finds

I have been entertaining myself by going to estate sales. I am posting a number of wonderful items in my Etsy shop- so please check them out. Below is a sewing bird that may have been my Grandmother's. I have held onto it forever it seems, but now I hope someone else may enjoy it more than I do. If it doesn't sell I will save it for Aster's wedding. The sewing bird, also known as a sewing clamp, hemming clamp, or third hand, was used in the 18th and early 19th centuries to attach one end of a piece of cloth firmly to a table to enable the seamstress to hold her sewing taut with one hand while stitching with the other. They were not used widely in America until mid-19th century, they became popular as a luxury item, which a young man would present to his intended bride months before the wedding.

Sunday, March 21, 2010


Our cat, Nemo, kept me up all night. We have to keep him in the basement at night because he is nocturnal and we are not. We close the door to the basement and then place the kitchen trash can in front of the door, but if the trash isn't heavy enough he can push it open. I know he would be embarrassed if he knew I posted this picture.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Preparing to Lose

Heather Layton has an amazing exhibit at HallWalls Contemporary Art Center in Buffalo titled Preparing to Lose. Below is pictured the stupendous drawing that she created on the wall of the gallery. Next Saturday is the Small Press Book Fair in Buffalo - I am very sad I can't go this year but it would be a great day to go and see this exhibit too!

This it what Hallwalls director wrote about her work:

In a culture addicted to win/win, "we're No. 1" scenarios,Heather Layton's Preparing To Lose drawings are imagined as counter-narratives to the cultural norm. Her ambiguous and unidentified characters are fragile, but not fear-ridden. They are part of a team that is not going to win, but persist in trying. Their honest failures and awkward moments are intended as a refreshing alternative to the straight-faced assertions of power and perfection that permeate most part of american culture. Layton's characters have no grandiose proclamations to uphold, no aggressive assertions of certitude, no riches to declare. They inhabit stories that don’t lead to triumph and are not amongst those who rise to the glittering top of the glittering heap, but they exist as a self-propelling engine of pluck and persistence whose achievements (and identities) remain unclear but whose actions and efforts appear to demonstrate a communal, collective effort—trying regardless of the possibility of eventual failure.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Thread Party

7-9 PM
654 South Ave.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

A short oven

Allen surprised me on Saturday. While I was a work he removed the oven, cut the counter top and then replaced the oven - because as he said, "two burners are still working, so we can still use it." You can see it is propped up by two of the sixteen phone books we received this week - why do they keep printing these things!

I just made an omelet on it and it was not too bad, my back hurt a little, not that bad though...

We are going to hopefully get the gas line moved and at least have one of my wishes come true for the kitchen, burners which I can actually control the temperature.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

A long day

Gage is feeling great today. We all had a long awful experience at the hospital yesterday, as the surgeon was running 3 hours behind. The waiting room was full and loud and bright and Gage was really unhappy. Strangely, the long wait was the worst of it, and the doc saw exactly what we expected him to see - a very irritated red and inflamed stomach. Thank goodness nothing else was visibly amiss, we await the biopsy results and just keep working on getting him healthy - how do you heal a broken stomach? I think the reason he feels so great today is that he did not eat for three days prior and that gave his stomach some needed rest.

The cause is, of course, still unknown, and I have no idea which came first... did the vomiting cause the irritation or did the irritation cause the vomiting?

If anyone has experience with this same medical issue or knows anything or has any suggestions for good resources I would really appreciate the info.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Happy Pi Day!

Pi is one of my favorite things in the world. The idea that the relationship between an arc and a straight line can be infinite in numeric description justifies the amazing connection between the impossible and the possible for me.

With the use of computers, Pi has been calculated to over 1 trillion digits past the decimal point. Pi is an irrational and transcendental number meaning it will continue infinitely without repeating. The symbol for pi was first used in 1706 by William Jones, but was popular after it was adopted by the Swiss mathematician Leonhard Euler in 1737.

So if you are need of measuring the area of a circle - this is all you need:

Area of a Circle

And if you are need of measuring the volume of a cylinder - here you go:

Volume of a Cylinder

And don't forget to spring ahead today and change any old fashioned clocks you may still have.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Wouldn't ya know

Just an hour after I bought the Wicked tickets, I went to make a broiled cheese open face sandwich for my lunch and my broiled cheese was just sweaty cheese - the oven did not get hot, it got warm, but not hot.

Not just the broiler but the oven all together now gets a little bit warm at 500 degrees or broil. Allen thinks it is the thermostat and I am devastated. Any one else in the world would be happy to get a new range, as this one is over fifty years old, has yellowing ceramic paint covering up chips and really only has one temp on the awful electric stove top - very very high.

Look at this range - it is a "drop in" which they don't make any more - so it means cutting the counter top which also sucks and I know it will be a disaster. I was hoping to be able to have it hold on until we could afford the time and money for a complete kitchen redo. I want a real range hood and a real gas range. This means finding a space for the microwave and venting the the hood (yes, right now it is not even vented). Allen and I are so stressed and feeling pulled in so many ways I cannot imagine attempting to deal with this. But that's Life and goodness knows that many people have worse problems than this...

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Wicked Soon

I just ordered tickets for the four of us to see Wicked. It is the last thing on which we should be spending money. Stupidly frivolous and unnecessary, but I want to see it and I need something for all of us to look forward to. It is not for a month, but I am excited. Maybe I will read the book. Today it is warm enough to sit outside on the deck, which I am going to go do right now.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


I have been asked to have my work on the walls of a new space in a fabulous modern and hip store - Thread. Thread is on South Ave., and if you haven't been there you have been missing out.
Thread's Home Store is moving from next door to the back. Thread is in a Victorian house and a wall is being torn down to create the home section of the store. This new space is so beautiful, it has plaster sculptured ceilings and a marble fire place. I am simply delighted to have my worked hanging on the walls (and for sale).

You can mark your calenders now for the opening party which will be next Saturday, March 2oth, from 7 - 9 p.m. I will post a more lovely invitation next week. And as a tease and a temptation here is a picture of Aster wearing my collage "skirt" that I made and hope to display as part of the window installation. I took the pics, but then Aster played with one image and created this beautiful photograph. I think I will have it framed. The skirt is made of over five vintage books' pages rolled into tubes. I dipped some of the tubes in a mauve colored wax to create areas that are darker than others. I was going for the look of a paper wasp nest.
I still have about six inches to add. It is actually quite meditative work - until I burn my finger with hot glue. It is not at all what I imagine it to look like. And, as usual, it is way more work than I anticipated. Hopefully two more books will finish it.
Oh, and Gage's MRI came back fine. The next test is an endoscopy and colonoscopy. Poor guy keeps throwing up and he had a little bit of the headache return today, but he generally feels okay.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


I felt that three birds was too much and the top one seemed squished - so I scraped the paint off and fixed it up a bit. I also changed the color in photoshop, but the actual painting is very green. I have been in love with green this month. I made five foundlings in various bright greens which I will show off soon.

Below is a collage I wasn't thrilled with, and photoshop gave it much needed new life. I tweaked the color, added the nuclear plant and gave the bird a half tone.

Monday, March 8, 2010


I am head over heels in love with this new Kokka design. I have no place in the house for it, I may have to design a whole new room just so I can have it my life - maybe a table cloth? Maybe a skirt? It is so rich and wonderful. This one is Kokka too. And I am in need of fabric for the bedroom as I decided to completely abandon the teal and blue idea... The dandelion fields fabric I had chosen is beautiful, but upon having it as pillows and the ottoman cover I decided I just hated that baby blue color in it... which makes me realize some of the options I have pictured below are probably not going to work. My favorite is the last, Robert Kaufman's design, but it is sold out everywhere. I want roman shades for the windows and I may attempt to sew them myself, I may hire someone more able at the sewing machine to make them.

Joel Dewberry above and below. These are a little too flowery for my taste.

Another Kokka above and the one I want below.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Francesca Berrini

Francesca Berrini lives in Portland, OR, and deconstructs and reconstitutes found maps using the process of collage. Her work offers the reassuring sense of place maps provide, the viewer soon discovers that any effort of place recognition is futile. These places, comprised of torn, roughly half-inch square map remnants, are purely fictional. And every miniscule ribbon of road or tributary of river or border of province is still made to connect into one sinuous line over the course of perhaps hundreds of tiny scraps. What compounds are richly textured quilts of landmasses, oceans, deserts, rivers, and cities that exist solely in the artist’s imagination. Berrini’s maps reflect an interest in man’s transient inflictions upon nature: arbitrary borders, routes of travel, titles of places.

She says: “The creation of maps has historically been a painstaking process, meticulously striving for accuracy. I aim to slowly create a separate world from the scraps of my current fascinations. I am reforming the world that is available to me piece by piece to reflect my imagination of what I do not know. A pointless precision beautifully mirroring nothing.”

AND she's a roller derby girl. That's right.

Saturday, March 6, 2010


Not exactly a typical Saturday for us. Gage had an MRI of his head today. I thought it would be more traumatic for him but I think he actually enjoyed it. He said he felt like he was in the movie, 2001 A Space Odyssey. He said he heard the alarm beep just like in the movie and then violins playing. It is an interesting connection to make, because the space ship in the movie is wheel like and works circular in motion just as the MRI machine works. He sure is a wonderful and interesting kid. I don't know when we will know the results. I am waiting to get an appointment with a neurologist. And then next week is also the endoscopy and colonoscopy. Those should be the last of the tests. I hope I can relax when all the worst possibilities are ruled out. Gage is actually feeling well recently, the headache has subsided and the vomiting still comes through out the day, but he feels good and is happy which is so much easier for me. I hate to see him miserable.

I have been knitting, I am always knitting. I find if I don't knit for one whole day my hands are upset with me, stiff and sore and not willing to work on anything else until I let them have the knitting needles for a while. And Gage is my photographer, he's the only one who can take the pictures the way I want them. So we both got out into the sunshine yesterday to photograph and we even took a walk. Here are some pics of recent gloves I posted on Etsy.

Friday, March 5, 2010

winter color

Blue sky against the red branches of the japanese maple. These pics came right out of the camera - no photoshop - seriously!

more new collage

The above one reads - While certain destructive effects may seem relatively innocuous, it is when the damage., like plaster-of-Paris, becomes set, that it turns into a matter of which to be concerned.
I am working on more series and then I am putting it all away. I am keeping the painting up though.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

starling it is

Thanks Lisa! While looking at starling pics I found this great Blog called the Zen Bird Feeder.I borrowed her picture of a starling. She lives in the Adirondacks, so I guess it could be the same species. I did not think my new bird was a starling because I always thought that they were shiny black and small, but I was wrong.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

new bird

I caught a picture of this bird one day last week, but he has not returned that I know of.
Can anyone identify this bird for me? I cannot find anything like it in my Peterson's guide.