Saturday, March 23, 2013


Well, it's Studio Saturday, so I guess you're wondering what all I've been up to in my wee little studio this week.

The answer is, not much! Unless, of course, you consider being able to see the top of one's work table, for the first time in ages, to be noteworthy. I'm guessing my husband does, for it literally stopped him in his tracks when he spotted it, and had him saying "Well look at you!"

I also started making a shopping list of supplies I will need for the various classes I'll be taking at Lucky Star Art Camp. Yep, I'm already packing for an art camp that is still more than six months away! Think maybe I'm a tad excited? I've never been to a week-long art camp before, but I did take a weekend class with Donna Downy not long ago, and I was amazed at what all one has to schlepp to these sorts of things, in addition to your clothes and toiletries. It takes some planning to fit it all in, without having any disastrous leaks or spills!

One thing on the list was a cup for holding your painting water. Yesterday, when we had some time to kill before our movie started, I wandered into Archivers and Joann's, and you'll never guess what I found.

Just like the little metal ones we used to drink out of when I was a Brownie and Girl Scout, only waaaay cuter!

One thing down, ninety-nine to go!

Thursday, March 21, 2013


Way back at the end of January I decided I was going to try growing potatoes this year, so I picked up some seed potatoes at King Feed. You're supposed to cut them up into sections -- making sure there are at least a couple of "eyes" in each one -- then you lay them out to dry for a couple of days before planting them. So that's what I did. Only, on January 31st we ended up making a run to the hospital, and I forgot all about those potatoes. By the time I remembered, they had gone well beyond "dry" and on to "sorta black and shriveled." I planted 'em anyway. After about a month, with no sign of green, I finally gave up on them. I figured I just wasn't meant to be a veggie gardener, seeing as how nothing ever seems to pan out for me. But then these guys showed up at The Bountiful Sprout.

No, I'm not planning to grow armadillos (gawd forbid!). It's a new seed company located right here in the Texas Hill Country, and their goal is to breed the vegetable seeds that are best suited to our particularly crazy climate conditions, since the seeds from up north tend to think our winters are way too mild, and that our summers are freakin' un-be-LIEVE-able! It seemed like such a worthy endeavor, I ended up ordering one packet of just about everything they had to offer. Luckily, they were all things that could be direct seeded into the garden, and this was the perfect time to do it. So, I pulled out my books and tablets, and I drew me up a plan for my two raised beds, which somehow managed to stay fairly deer resistant with the somewhat wobbly net covers we put on them last year.

I decided to try the "square foot" method this time, and had every inch allotted for, only, when I went out to plant the seeds, you'll never guess what was there waiting for me?

A beautiful row of potato plants, running from one end of the bed to the other!

Sure, it meant reworking my entire garden plan, but I didn't care. This year? I'm feelin' lucky!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


Well, we're coming up on summer with less than half a tank of water. In addition to that, our backup well is out of commission for the time being. What that means is that the rain tank will be needed, not just to supply our entire home with drinking, bathing, and flushing water, as it usually does, but also to keep all our plants and trees alive until we, hopefully, get some fall rains. Which is why Hubby broke down and ordered some water a few days back.

We tried a new company last time, and since our tank is not in the most "accessible" location, I warned them not to bring a very big truck. They just laughed and said "Don't worry. We got rid of all the big ones after getting stuck one too many times!"

Still, even with the small ones, we always kinda hold our breath, until they manage to get themselves turned all the way around and headed back out, without ending up with at least one wheel in a ditch. A lot depends on the driver! Anywho, we got our delivery yesterday and everything went just fine.

Guess what happened after that? It rained, of course!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


I have got to be one of the worst wives in the world. Don't believe me? You will by the end of this post.

I read something fascinating once -- probably in Jodi Piccoult's book, My Sister's Keeper -- about what it's like to have a chronically ill sibling. About how you are never allowed to get angry with them, no matter what they do, because, well, what if they croaked right after you had a tiff? Just think how awful you'd feel! I'm beginning to understand what she meant. For example, the last several nights in a row, my hubby has done his cocooning thing, where, in his sleep, he ootches over right next to me until I'm hanging off the edge of the bed. Then, a little while later, he suddenly rolls all the way back to his side of our king sized bed, taking all my covers with him! Now, normally, I would fight to get them back, but he had his man-purse rolled up in that cocoon with him, and I feared that if I were to yank on the covers, I just might yank that PICC line right outta his arm or, at the very least, put a kink or air bubble in it. So I shivered instead.

There's also the fact that the man who used to sleep ten hours straight each night, then be happy to sleep away half the day if you let him, has been getting up earlier and earlier each morning. He's disrupted my sunrise ritual for the last several mornings, and YES, I feel like a total b!+@h for even mentioning it! But the thing is, if my ritual gets disrupted, I end up not writing in my journal. And, when I don't write in my journal, I end up with nothing to blog about. And, when I don't blog, well, let's just say I get a little grumpy.

So, this morning, after getting only four hours of sleep, I woke up and decided to go ahead and sneak out of bed. Hubby was over there snoring away in his cozy little cocoon, and I thought to myself "Surely, if I get up this early, I will have time to eat breakfast and do some writing before he wakes up." But, no, 'fraid not. Halfway through eating my oatmeal, here comes Squeedunk, flipping on every dang light in the house.

I can't tell you how shrewish I felt, to be letting something so silly get to me, and make me feel so grumpy. After all that poor man has been through! I mean, what if he didn't wake up? But there it is. Now you know. And, the thing is, I've always been the Tigger to his Eeyore. We balanced each other. What I fear is, if we're not careful -- if I can't at least talk about how I feel -- well, we're gonna end up with two Eeyores living together, and then what the heck are we gonna do?

Monday, March 18, 2013


Several years ago I stumbled across these pictures by artist Jan Dorion Whitney, in an issue of La Vie Claire magazine, and they have been in my inspiration folder ever since.

I just love paintings of simple women doing ordinary things -- made extraordinary via color and pattern.

A couple of years later I stumbled across this book, and fell madly in love with the work of artist W.B.Thompson.

Again, simple almost child-like drawings with vibrant color and pattern.

Since then, I have run across many other things I liked, all with this same feel to it. I wasn't sure what to call this style, but just for the fun of it, I googled "Mexican Folk Art", and these are some of the images that popped up:

All this is what was roiling around in my head when I started playing with that "Muses in Margaritaville" photo in my art journal.

And, down the wormhole I gooooooo.....

Sunday, March 17, 2013


One way or another, someone in your family owes their very life to an indigent black sharecropper who died, back in 1951, from the most horrific case of cancer ever, leaving behind five small children. Why was she so important to world health today? Well, to answer that question, you really need to read The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, by Rebecca Skloot.

You owe it to yourself, to your children, and to her children -- who suffered abject misery and abuse without her there to protect them -- to find out exactly how much we owe this woman. Besides, it's just a great read!