Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I'm back again

Wow, the whoas of computer problems. I have been out of commission for about a week or more. In that time i bought a new car and have been bearing this cold weather. I've been limiting any Christmas shopping. I bought my mom and bill's mom something and of course bill. But, that is it!! I bought a 2000 Toyota Camry. It is sooo nice. I'm not used to a nice car. My old Toyota tercel served me well. It will now serve someone else well. I'm a total believer in Toyota's.. LOVE THEM. I'm dying my hair right now, waiting for the 30 min to pass. I gotta get that grey right outta my hair...... I'm going redder than I'm used to, I'll see how it goes. Now I'm off to catch-up on my fellow bloggers.

Monday, November 30, 2009

tiles are done

Oh wow!! my tiles are done and look fab on my oak fern stand. I have to stain and varnish the stand. But i think they fit great on the top. with a little trim on top to frame them in. Still some mistakes but, the more i do the better i get. A few spots didn't get 2 coats of paint. and are lighter. Don't look to close at my floor. I tracked in some mud. My next project.I've already started, is a Stained glass window 30" x 24" of 2 egrets in flight. A later post.

I looked at used cars today and and test drove a 93 and a 94 and a 2000 Toyota Camry. I liked them all, but drove home the 2000 for bill to check it out. i have to decide tomorrow. I am sold on Toyota's. They go and go forever. I have a Toyota tercel now that i bought 8 years ago for 3000.00 It's the best 3000.00 i ever spent. It still runs great but, looks like crap. I have fears driving it on interstate. Over 200 thousand miles and going 75 miles an hour on interstate, well, i fear of something blowing.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

"Before picture"

I was wrong when i said the previous picture was the before picture . This one was. It was a tangled mess. Poison ivy, nettles, lots of critters.

Moving along

This rain ,it doesn't seem to stop. Poor bill he's been busy ripping off the back roof of the building. It had layer after layer of roofing, plywood, tar and whatever else. He stripped it down to the 1st layer of wood. He's repaired the bad spots with new wood. After years of leaking, the roof it self was in pretty good shape. The problem seems to be.... It won't stop raining. The tarps come out, it still gets wet and it needs to dry out before a new one goes on. He also insists on doing it all himself, So it taking time. But, it will be done soon. It will be done right.

I found a couple of cool doors for the front of the building. They need to be stripped. They are unusual, i've never seen anything like them. I also found a great old round stove for the building. I think it will keep it real toasty this winter. We have't picked it up yet, This picture i found it online, It's identical to the one we bought. I love stoves, i love the heat they give out and the warmth gets right down to my bones. We also cleared out the back. It was over run with terrible scrub trees, "Mulberries" and "tree of heaven". Now i have a clean slate and i can start planning for spring. Take a good look at this "before" picture. It will look nothing look this when i'm done.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

before the firing

Well, i think i've finished with my tiles . I've been painting everyday for awhile now. I'm trying to get it as perfect as possible. I take it to jafar this weekend and he will fire it for me. I can't wait to see it done. I found a perfect oak plant stand,that will work. 4 6x6 tiles will fit just right.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Make your own tile backsplash

If any one of my artistic art friends want to make your own tiles (kitchen back splash or a table top) Here is how to do it. first you order a box of tiles from Manitou arts, you can order 3x3's or 4x4, 6x6, 12x12. They come to you in bisque form (already fired once). a box of 50 6x6 will run about 36.00. Dick blick also carries them but, they are more expensive. Then i ordered my paint from Amaco. I ordered the velvet series. You can buy sets or single bottles of paint. The velvet series is good because the tile only needs to be fired once. The undercoat and the glaze are applied before firing. A tiny good brush is essential size 00 and 000. For designs, you can design your own or look thru a Dover catalog. They have everything. Victorian, arts crafts , Persian, Turkish, Phillip Morris designs. Take your pick. Trace your pattern on with "wax free" paper. The one i used is called Sarel, i got it from dick blick. When it's traced, go over the entire design with a dark color of undercoat. Then fill in with your color of choice. Everything needs 2 coats of paint. Outline again after you've painted. When completely dry, apply a fairly thick coat of glaze. 3 coats. Let dry before each layer. Fire them, a local ceramics shop or art guild will probably help you out. I find it very relaxing and addictive. It's always been hard for me to sit still . Doing this i can sit for hours but, my toes are still wiggling. Plus you will have something really cool when your done!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Tribute to someone I wish I had known


Glitter, glitter in the sky,
high above the trees
twinkling, blinking
down at me.

Soft and pleasant moonlight,
across my wall it creeps.
Droopy, heavy eyelids
welcome me to sleep.

Nightlight glowing,
gentle and polite.
I slip into dream
and sail into the night.


Jake was my nephew. I met him once when he was about 6 or 7 years old. My brother john was visiting us with his boys. I remember him being very shy. But, fascinated by Smiley our jabbering parrot. Over the years he had grown into a handsome caring and generous man. Only i never knew that Jake. When i heard from john that Jake had died suddenly, my 1st response was intense sadness for john. I can never express myself well when it comes to situations like this. I don't want to say what everyone says. "I'm so sorry for your loss". I Am sorry for his loss but, so much more than that too. I can't even pretend to know what it's like losing your son. I can only imagine. I know now that john is trying find the meaning of all this.

I feel that everyone is put here to do something. Jake was a teacher. He taught kids art and how to express their feelings thru art. He was the sun in every body's day. Just maybe Jake changed someones life. Their life would have taken a different route if they hadn't met him. We will never know. That only happens in "It's a wonderful life." with jimmy Stewart. But, I tend to believe that. Everyone makes an impact on someone . I hope john finds some meaning, with his soul searching. I find a tremendous loss for not getting to know him.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

my 1st tile

I finished my 1st tile and it came out so-so. I see alot of boo-boos. But, I'm now on to doing my next project. 6 tiles for a small table. I can see all kinds of possibilities. Tile panels or back splashes, Art Nouveau or American Indian designs. sell on etsy. My wheels are turning. It's also very relaxing to sit still long enough to paint intricate designs. I also just got all my glass for my next stained glass project. More on that later.

All tucked in for the winter

All my hundreds of plants got hauled in again. They get bigger every year and i now need a piano dollie to get them in. All the green makes me feel good. The air is alot fresher too.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

The girls making tiles

Zari and parvin and jennifer have been friends of mine for some time, We all have similar interests. It's been fun getting together with so many like-minded friends. check out their website.

Creating art

Here is some of his work.

Pretty gorgeous Huh.

Persian art tiles

Meet Jafar and Lynn Mogadam, he's teaching me and 3 of my friends how to paint our own tiles. What a character he is, to say the least. His energy and sunny disposition about life and his art is very infectious. His art of Persian art tiles is incredible. (please read the article i found on him) He has been SO generous in helping us learn this beautiful art form. Lynn his wife was into belly dancing in her younger days. She is a character in her own right. A women's libber and an Iranian, an unlikely combo. Parvin and Zari are from Iran so it all has special meaning for them. It's been fun learning something new. It's also been fun getting together with friends on Sunday afternoons, Creating and talking, learning.

I'll finally be able to fire up my kiln. I have a large one that I've had for afew years. But, I've never fired it up. So, with getting my studio up and running , hopefully soon. The sky is the limit with what cool stuff i can come up with. I can't wait.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Apartment in our building, Let the renovations begin

The apartment is amazingly in pretty good shape since it hasn't been lived in in 5 years. Here are the before pics and we probably won't get much done up here till spring. It's pretty good size.

Cool graffiti

Bill's work shop is going in back. It has some exposed brick. He's going to try and keep the graffiti. I think it's cool.

art studio before pics

The front room is going to be MY space. I'm moving all my stained glass and mosaic supplies down here when i get this the way i want it. Paint, tin ceiling, new (old salvaged) wood floor. a wood burner. Some ceiling fans, I'll be set. Check out the funky windows put in the back wall. I think it was done to let light into the middle room. I have to get rid of the blue!

It's not as bad as it looks

Well, Bill and i are starting to get it ready to work on. The building that is. The 2 major projects are getting a new roof for the addition on the back. It leaks pretty bad. Then replacing the wood floor in the large center room with cement. Then we'll have a Strong sturdy floor with radiant heat. It will solve a few problems it had. The roof comes off next week, weather permitting. Here are a few pictures. Also the upstairs apartment isn't too bad. Updating and some new windows are the major projects with that phase of the renovation. but, it's high and dry and not going any where so it will wait till we get the down stairs dialed in. On that back wall there was a large garage door. It's going to be replaced with a wide double door. We are also adding a new window. Oh, did i mention, it only cost us 8000.00. A bargin to boot.

Friday, October 2, 2009

A great day

Wow, it started out rainy and crappy. But, i saved the day by grabbing my bag and heading out the door. I went to the amana colony's and to Fairfax to see barb of Simply Iowa. I stopped off to see Sharon of Sweet repose. She has a booth in an antique store called Noe Haus antiques. It was a fantastic shop . I discovered another shop called catiri art gallery.I came upon an artist, her name is Laura lee Junge from the Chicago area. Her paintings blew me away. I was mesmerized. The colors and the free flowing movement. WOW!!! that's all i can say. Oh, did i mention, I WANT, I NEED these 2 paintings. I do, i do, i do. Catiri art oasis is full of beautiful works of art. Check her out also check out Laura lee junge.

Then i stopped off at barbs sale and picked up a gorgeous architectural piece off an old building. What will i do with that you say. Who cares "It's beautiful. Of course i could leave without this Victorian wool work piece. The delicate work involved. It's amazing.

When ever i go to art galleries i get inspired.

This summer has to be the most non creative Artless(is that a word) summers to date. My mind has been so preoccupied with the building we are buying and Other stumbling blocks . Like my art space so filled with stuff i can't work there. hence the reason for the building. It seems like my mind is so full of stuff whirling around, it's been hard to concentrate a 1 piece of art. Well enough,

Monday, September 28, 2009

Cool new stuff

Bill and i went auctioning for the 1st time in many years. It was a big 3 day sale we did'nt make it till the last day. We got a very large box full of old kids books (turn of the century)> The neat old "McLoughlin" and "Raphael Tuck". Bill has been collecting those for years. They are beautiful. The colorful lithography. This is a sampling. 2 large boxes of doll and doll parts. And a very large and beautiful Tool chest for bill It has to be the biggest one I've ever seen. Picture frames and old scrap books. It kind of got me excited to go to more auctions.

I put together a nice shadow box. It has a picture of bills grandparents. Surrounded by a cool hair work piece that i got. And a matte that i found many years ago in an Amsterdam flea market.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

The place is ours

Well, we finally have full possession of our old building. It's raining now. I'll get some pictures up soon. We lucked out and john gave us a great deal. 2000.00 less than what he 1st told us. The back roof comes off 1st and we are pouring a cement floor in the big middle room to get rid of some problems. It needs to be thoroughly aired out. It's better already. Yes Sharon it is! The old stinky mold filled carpet is GONE. The building will have life again. When i walk thru it i can hear the building talking "Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you".

Thursday, September 17, 2009

I'm still hear

Wow, nothing has been going on lately. My good friend "Where is she now" sharon, Is moving her antique shop to amana, IA. Good luck to her. She always has fun and amazing stuff. I know she'll do fine there. Lots of traffic. Check her out. Barb my antique friend in Fairfax is getting ready for a big show in Minnesota, barb, don't take all your good stuff. Leave some for me. Blog friend dogwalker is doing some postponed traveling. Good for her she needs a break. Karika is creating more amazing artwork. Everybody is doing something. I'm heading home to see my mom this weekend. Rosemary, She's something else. She's 83 years old Can't hear to good. But, otherwise in great shape. She rides her stationary bike 1 hour everyday . Reads a book a week. She's very very routine. Eats for fuel ( not very much.) When we visit we bring our own food. She says she loves to see us but loves to see us go, too.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

"White wednesday"

Since i don't have a camera yet, I've found an old picture to put up. To see more "White" check out faded charm blog. Happy wed.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

"Leave my kids alone"

I know i haven't posted anything for awhile, but, this got my dander up. I was reading the paper this morning. An article about President Obama caught my eye. He was going to give a speech to the nations school kids. Surprise, the "Conservatives" are in an uproar. "The pres is trying to indoctrinate the nation's children. Some Bigots oh i mean conservative parents held signs out "leave our kids alone" . I can't believe it. If i were a conservative and i wasn't a bigot, I'd be really mad. Because when i hear the word Conservative i think Bigot, redneck, or people that hate, hate gays, or anything that is'nt like them. They really don't care about our country. But, people who hate Obama so much that they want to see him fail, even if it means screwing up our country.
C'mon folks he was giving a speech telling kids to stay in school and study hard. To hang in there when things get tough. Something you redneck parents should be telling your kids.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Some updates

I've been reading blogs but, haven't been posting. To much on my mind. First off, the dynamics of the house has obviously changed. Little Jimi was the mayor or the little general. He kept order in the house with 3 monkeys below him. He ran a tight ship. I didn't realize how tight until he's been gone. Now the other are running amok. The cat eats out of all the bowls. no one greets us at the door. The barking has subsided. everyone is sleeping when we get home. "Oh your home?" He watched out that window vigilantly for any thing amiss outside. and waited everyday for our cars to pull up. He wasn't like the others. Almost human. I could talk to him like a person. He would understand. "i wouldn't leave the yard if i were you Jim" He'd turn right around. Anything i would say he knew what i was saying.
But, we are doing better. I'm going to be making a stone for his grave with mosaics. It's getting pretty full,back by the pine trees. 4 dogs and 2 cats. I want to make alittle grotto.
now on to my other dilemma. I went out for a bike ride Saturday and lost my wallet and my camera. I put it on the hood of my trunk. As i was loading my bike on the bike rack. I drove off. So, I've been combing the ditches of highway 22 alittle mile at a time. So far No luck. Walking and more walking. At least I'm getting some exercise. I had my drivers license and bank numbers, a MasterCard, and 100.00. my last hundred for the month. I don't get paid again till the 1st of Sept. I'm broke. So that's why I'm walking the ditch miles. I have nothing else to do.
The building still is not emptied. C'mon John get your ass in gear. He has sooo much stuff. So off i go to walk some more. If i don;t walk and try to find it. I'll always wonder. So No pictures either.No camera.

Monday, August 17, 2009

"New plant"

When i lost my little buddy Jimi, i decided to buy a new plant in honor of him. I came home with this beautiful "White cactus orchid". With hopes i can keep it alive. It seems to be taking off. Just look at the huge bloom i got off it. More are on the way. It's not really in the orchid family, so that's probably why i can grow it. It's more like a christmas cactus. It was love at first site. The blooms are fleeting. They come out at night and fill the house with the most beautiful fragrance. Then gone by morning. But, well worth the wait.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

on top of the world

Hey barb, take alook at the ladder bill bought from you. Acouple of months ago, bill picked up a floor jack and an old orchard ladder. The ladder needed alittle fixing. It looked like it had been in a grass fire. Bill dug thru all the wood he has squirreled away and voila it is good as new. He had a blast repairing it. Now he told me to tell barb he's coming to get the other one and another jack if you still have them. Barbs antique store simply iowa is a treat to go thru. you never know what might turn up. I had'nt seen bill so tickled about something for awhile. So, look out here we come.

Monday, August 3, 2009

"Good bye my friend"

Well, I'm sad to say we had to take my little man to the vet Saturday morning to be put to sleep. He started seizing around 6:00 in the morning and never stopped till we got him tranquilized. He was screaming the whole time. Literally screaming. It took 3 people to hold him down to give him the tranquilizer. I've never witnessed anything like that. He would scream at home if he was touched during a seizure. That is my only regret. Why did i have to hear and see all that. We didn't take him in to be put to sleep,just for some help. but, we left knowing it was the thing to do. He just wasn't the same after that 1st sign of a massive seizure. He was like a person with dementia. I was the one that kind of took care of him , his vet needs, taking care that the house was clear of objects etc... So I'm taking this alittle better than bill. I've seen his decline up close and personal. He's not suffering, and i feel good about that. I have been preparing myself for a week now. Knowing he wasn't getting better. I tried talking to bill about it. But, he really didn't want to talk about it. He was in denial. So, as a result of that, bill is not doing well. Not well at all. Oh, he'll get better, but, he always takes it harder than me. Good bye my little man , we miss you terribly.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


I came home last Thursday. I knew something was amiss. Jimi wasn't at the door barking. The other three were there. I called and heard a muffled bark. i went upstairs and couldn't find him. Back down to the basement, no jimi. Then i finally spot him and he can't see. I think he had a stroke. He could see a day ago, i thought. This blindness came on pretty sudden. I didn't put it together till later when a friend said her dog had a stroke and lost his sight. He's also very tired. But, otherwise normal. Jimi is 11 years old. Bostons live about 15 years. So i wasn't expecting this. We just have to watch him and keep him out of harms way. It's hard for him to be around the others. They are soooo rammy. He snaps at them when they bump him. It's so hard to see your loyal companions fade or deteriorate. Of all the bostons we've had jimi is the most loyal, Where ever i am, Jimi is at my side. When I'm on vacation he sleeps on my pillow till I'm home.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

"White wednesday

Wow, i can't believe it, i did it, i found another white piece in my house. A child's doll dresser. That's been chewed on by a destructive bird named "Greta". . Of course i had to show off my beeeautiful white lilies. Sorry to those that might be tired of flower pictures. Please check out faded charm for more beautiful visions of white.