Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Children and Christmas

Well with 5 grandkids and a sixth on the way - this is an exciting time of year. Two of my grandkids had birthdays on the 15th; Jackson turned the big 5 and Cameron turned 3!!! Today the 23rd is also Vicki's birthday, Mark's step mom who passed away this March, we will be having our annual toast of Kahlua for her this evening! It's funny how much you miss people that made you crazy when they were here. Then my oldest son, Alex, turned 26 on the 20th - he thinks he is sooooooooooo old. I actually got to spend his birthday with him this year and just loved our time. His birth was quite an event so I wrote him the following poem for his special day:

T’was the night before ALEX and all through the house,
not a creature was stirring not even a mouse.
I sat at the table, phone in my hand;
crying to Grandma, “When will this baby land?”
Your Dad was out having beers with the boys,
he stumbled in late and had his football toys.
I was still sitting a tearful wreck,
yelling and screaming, “What the heck?”
His head hit the pillow, I watched the clock tick.
Til my belly started stretching and you gave me a kick!
Up the stairs yelling, “It’s time to go!”
Your Dad still tipsy moved ever so slow.
Stop just a minute he needed to shower,
I sat on the sofa, “Come on it’s the hour!!!”
We raced through the snow to our hospital room,
and now the pain started, I asked, “How long will this loom?”
Sixteen hours later your cute head popped out,
with tears in our eyes we gave a joyful shout!
My how you’ve grown,
Twenty six years later you still make me beam!!!
Love, mom

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Art on the Streets

My Key West Trip. . .
November 1st landed in Ft. Lauderdale - sunny and balmy warm! I spent a fun afternoon with my brother who lives there and got on the road to Key West early Sunday morning. Arriving on the island early afternoon - got to my bed and breakfast ( The Popular House - OMG - they were great!) and settled in. 6 pm was the time to meet my instructor, Sandford Birdsey, and the other students. It was a small gather of ten students, some spouses and local artists! Sandford greeted us all and gave us an overview of the week ahead. We all shared some great wine and food to get ready. The next five days we met at 9 a.m. to go to a corner on Key West and paint a location of Sandford’s choice. We were all over the sidewalks, painting, listening, critiquing - it was a wonderful experience. I learned a lot, met some great people that I will stay in contact with hopefully for many years!
My wish for all of you, my customers & friends. . . that you take time out and find the time to pursue a passion. That you will be selfish and take a trip that is just for you and enjoy it without guilt! Wow, it is amazing!
The two quotes I will take with me daily :
“If you make a mistake, make a big one so everyone thinks you did it on purpose!” And, “Treat yourself with respect and importance, treat your art with respect and importance! Make time for both yourself and your art!”
Sandford Birdsey - she is a recognized Watercolorist and a remarkable woman - check her out at:
The picture up top is my painting of Blue Heaven restaurant in Bahama Village. The other is of Sandford, me, my new friends from Quebec City - Claudette and Louis! This was at our end of week gallery showing at Simonton Court - beautiful.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


Well - day 3 in Key West painting with Sandford Birdsley and nine other students. Today was awesome - my painting still needs alot of work but I can see so much progress - AMAZING. The jitters are gone - I am with a great bunch of women - no, no artist! Today was FUN.

We painted Blue Heaven - and I can even tell that is what I painted.

Biked to the beach = took a cat nap! What could be more perfect - well Mark being here would make it perfect!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Key West Live

Okay - taking a painting trip is intimidating. I don't understand alot of the challenges of watercolor and this is turning out to be exciting - scarry. Day one was over the top with doubt and a bad painting. Day two has gone better - processed all the info from yesterday and what everyone else did with their work - WOW. So my second painting was better but a long way off. Went back to my room and re-did the painting - better but lots of room for improvement.

This trip is all about GROWTH as an "artist". That is what I want to be when I grow up.


Thursday, October 30, 2008


Okay I leave in one more day - long day here at the dealership - long week actually. Saturday will be day one - hanging out with my Lauderdale brother Dean! We'll have fun. Then Sunday morning the sunny drive down to Key West. At 6pm I will be attending a reception for all the students to meet and listen to Sandford Birdsley get us started!!! This is going to be such an experience!
On the home front - just to let you know - Mark did jump successfully and he is HOOKED on flying through the air. So, come spring time he will be learning to go solo.
I know I will be learning alot over the next week and will be hopefully posting some of my work and certainly that of the teacher!

Monday, October 20, 2008


With only Sunday's off, one's like yesterday are treasured. I slept until 8am ( which is really late for me), it was so nice. Got up sat with Sophie and drank a couple cups of coffee. Sophie and I then mozied up to the artroom - and got started in a calm way. Usually I am pressed for time and trying to put together a project in panic mode. Yesterday I worked into my project and pieced it together. My brother, Dan, has poor health and I have been supposed to paint his angel for him since - I don't know - March maybe. My mom asked me to get on it because he hasn't been doing well lately. I wanted to take my time and do it right - finally. I had the vision in my head (as I always do) and started to put it on paper. Dan is very religious so I decided to have a faded picture of Jesus Christ included ( that didn't come out as well as planned) but Dan will appreciate it, I'm sure. For the most part, I'm really happy with the finished piece and am sending it out to him today! I didn't really leave the house until late in the afternoon. The sun was shining and all the colors were bright and crisp. Mark and I finished it off grilling chicken and he made the best potatoes ever - salad - glass of wine - what could be better! PERFECT DAY!

Sunday, October 19, 2008


13 more days until I leave for en plein air - Key West. My "QUEST". I'm now calling it that instead of my dream trip - because... I wrote of my gift from Jackie, a collage by Edee Joppich! This picture does not do it justice, I'm still trying to figure out the photo - computer thing. Anyways - each day I look into this collage and see so much more than the day before. I am looking at the layers and pulling out new information and inspiration for my "quest" into art.
Grateful to have experienced these two women!


Thursday, October 16, 2008

Pam Carriker's art

Wow, visit thebagladysart.blogspot.com
Check out her awesome work and enter to have a chance at WINNING one of her pieces
I love this!

a crossing of paths

16 more days until I leave on my artisitc journey - so many thoughts running through my head. I received a beautiful gift of a collage entitled, "Quest". So fitting as I start this new path. To have even more impact this particular collage was done by Edee Joppich, watercolorist extraordinare! About 18 years ago I attended her classes in Livonia - last year while selling cars I met a women, Jackie, that has become a close friend - went to her home and recognized some of Edee's paintings on her walls. It turns out they are close friends and have been for years. Very small world. Jackie was at Edee's gallery this summer and brought me back this wonderful piece of inspiration. Thank you just doesn't seem to cover the appreciation of this special gift.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

my entry

Well, I am one of the entrants that doesn't know how to photograph my art! This is a wall mirror or a stand alone counter top mirror. It makes me feel whimsical. In using Gail's prompt photo - the two girls - I kept my granddaughters in mind and some of their past halloween costumes - butterflies and fairies - they were so cute and beautiful. I did watercolor wash on top of Gesso, painted my fairies and embellished with decorative paper and glitter. I also added stickers using the dragonflies and butterflies. It was really fun - I wish the mirror had shown better in the photo I submitted.

I have learned something new with each of the projects Gail has announced and will continue to participate and improve. I thank her for the inspiration and education.


Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Mide Wide Open Contest Entry

I wish I knew how to do the photos better for my art - this is the entry using the Mide Wide Open photo and word prompt "all dressed up". Hope you like it and will log in to vote for my mirror! go to http://mind-wideopen.blogspot.com/ or find it thru Shabby Cottage Studios.

It was fun to create - and a challenge with all the hours I work it is hard to find time to create with the time frame given - makes me get going.

25 days until Key West!!!!


Sunday, October 5, 2008


OMG, well for Mark's 59th b-day I decided on a surprise adventure. Skydiving! He has mentioned that he wanted to do it - not me, afraid of heights. So I'm taking my dream trip this year (27 days to be exact) and it would be awesome for him to have one of his dream adventures. So, I don't tell him. I take Saturday off work, tell him we need to leave early and dress comfortable - also take some extra clothes - winter running gear would be good. It was only 36 degrees out when we left the house yesterday morning. We had a 2 hour drive to Fremont, MI. About 30 miles to go I had him open his b-day card that announced the surprise. He was thrilled, smiles from ear to ear. We get to the Fremont airport, in the middle of nowhere - just a couple of hanger buildings and wind socks - yikes. We walk in and a group of people are hanging out just waiting to jump. A couple dogs are part of the operation and everyone is low key. The class begins and it all seems relatively simple to do a tandem jump. So Mark gets ready with the help of Tony is parachute jump together guy. Seems really cool, they are going to do a double roll out jump instead of a plain jump out and arch! Okay, Mark is excited and off they go onto this tiny 1957 plane (as old as me plane). Four jumpers pile in - Mark first - two solo jumpers and Tony - Mark's tandem. Off they go into the beautiful blue sky. About 15 minutes into is trip they hear a huge bang and the cockpit fills with smoke. The pilot is yelling "get out" so the solo jumpers bail. Mark and Tony kicked the door open and away the two flew. Since the door opened the smoke cleared and Tony is trying to get Mark hooked up (he is the only one in the plane without a parachute!) Tony gets the top hooked and Mark is at the door feet on the jump pad and asking Tony, "Am I hooked up?" Tony replies, "GOOD ENOUGH." Mark is like slow down here - and at that time the pilot says I think we can make it back - and they are really to low to jump unless really necessary. Mark and Tony back into the cockpit and Dennis (the Pilot- a good one I might add!!!!!) Limps the plane back to the airport and lands with a no good engine - the plane had blown a rod right through the casing! There was alot of action on the ground as I sat there - "Somethings wrong, there is a fire on the plane. Okay I see them - He can make it, if anyone can land that plane it is Dennis." People running out onto the runway as this tiny plane lands - they had tiny little fire extinguishers, not like any rescue vehicles at this airport. I remained relatively calm, thinking that Mark was the better of the two of to be going thru this - he'd be calm and I'd be crying. As soon as the plane stopped everyone leaped out - the pilot wasn't sure if really a fire or what - get away from the plane. Once surveyed they discovered it was the engine had blown up. No more flights yesterday, so believe it or not, Mark has rescheduled for the 19th - the day after our 9th anniversary! Wow. I wanted him to have some excitement but this was alittle much! Thank God everyone is okay and laughing - I think that is because everyone is so nervous about what a close call this really was. Mark is the man of my dreams and I want to keep him!


Wednesday, October 1, 2008


So many things running thru my head this morning:

1. 31 days until I leave on my dream trip! Painting en plein air in Key West. I have to get a couple more paint brushes and supplies that I need to ship down to my brother Dean's in Ft. Lauderdale. Don't want to risk loosing my luggage. I also have started a surprise project for him that I need to get DONE before I go...
2. So many birthdays this month: Today my friend Amy, tomorrow my husband's ( I have a huge surprise adventure planned for Saturday that I can't mention just in case in checks in on my blog) and Patti's, the 3rd Michele's, the 5th Bonnie's, the 8th Bobbie's, the 22nd my brother Dales, the 30 Nancy's - and I probably missed a couple, need to check my calendar!
3. Need to have a good month in car sales! So need to get my newsletter out this weekend.
4. Need to build my Mary Kay business so that I can work less hours at the dealership and spend more time in my artroom!!!
5. This seems to far down on the list, but like I said lots running thru the head this morning. The MIND WIDE OPEN contest starts today - can't wait to see it and get started!


Tuesday, September 30, 2008

mind wide open contest

Tomorrow Gail at Mide Wide Open will post the new contest for October. I am anxious to see her trigger word and photo to be used. I participated this past contest and actually my first ATC that I have ever done - started with expanding on her contest from August. For me, someone that is trying to pull the artist within out, her contest is a great way to jump start the mind. Her timeline is one week so you really have to get on it. Again, for me, a great way to make me do it. I read in Pam Carriker's article that the hardest thing is to just start - so true for me. I stare at the paper and all my materials, have a vision in my brain, and then quit before I get going. I make all kinds of excuses: if I start now, I won't have time to finish - or great idea but I'm not good enough to get it to come out the way I see it in my head so better not try - or that will just take tooooooo long to do it right so better not try... the list goes on and on. With the Mide Wide Open contest my brain is so busy running ideas through that I don't have time for excuses. The projects can be small so I don't feel like I'm in over my head. It has really helped me to get going.

Now if I could just find the same motivation for my daily exercise routine! End of the month today so in my real job world - crunch time!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

art photos

Well, I am getting frustrated. I want to learn how to take photos of my work and size it the way it would fit best on this blog. Haven't figured it out yet. I have found a couple of classes that I'm sure will teach me what I need to know. I won't be able to take them until next year due to my painting journey (33 days away now!!!) and my day job. So I hope that anyone visiting me here will excuse my lack of knowledge for the time being.
I am off to my art table - it is topped with junk - can't create without space!!!

Friday, September 26, 2008

artist trading cards

wow. In researching artist trading cards I have run into a ton of new places to visit online. Each giving inspiration for new art!!! Anyone interested in starting an exchange group, please let me know. It would be fun to do a holiday exchange or some type of timeline with an idea to start for all and see what comes up. That would be similar to the Mind Wide Open contest - a general theme word to start from - or just an exchange with no boundaries - or upcoming holiday theme - OR -...
I could go on and on....... Check this website out:

You will see what I mean.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

my art

My friend Nancy has commented ( read at Real Job) - she is right I should have a pic with some art I've done - I will certainly figure out how to do that by the time I come back from Key West. The watercolor on the headliner of this blog is a painting I did last December for my grandson Landon. I then had notecards made from a photo of the painting that we sent out for his first birthday last January. I was so happy with the way it came out. I can't wait to see what I create down in the sun!!!
I am painting with Sandford Birdsley - check out her website: http://signofsandford.com

Her work is awesome - definitely read about her!!! She'll be 84 in February.

Enjoy the sunshine.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

My new journey

I am preparing for my dream trip. I am going to Key West for a watercolor retreat. En Plein Aire with Sandford Birdsley. 6 days of painting on location in Key West. I have been going there for years and every year walk by her studio and read the flyer about this week long experience. I am finally going!!! 38 days to lift off!

Monday, September 22, 2008

real job

I sell cars - new Ford's and used anythings - today is a 12 hour day - yuck. All I could think about today was how to learn blogging better. How do I post pictures of my artwork, how do I show the comments sent back to me. How do I put in links to websites I find of interest.

I did sell a really cool Mustang GT today, female 63 years young - 5 speed she just wants to have FUN - that was exciting in the car world but my brain is in the art world these days. It is a much happier place to be.

All and all - the weather was beautiful today - sunny and warm - even though summer ended yesterday. I talked to my youngest grandson - he's one and a half - and he actually called me Grandma!!! It's all good!

learning curve

I think I am on a roller coaster with this learning process. I have very limited computer skills and just looking at all the options - and investigating what I want to do on this blog - well it is going to take some time! Like I was supposed to be working out this morning and here I am! One step further into the process though.

I posted a picture of my first ATC (artist trading card, as I didn't know that the first time I read the term). I have them for sale in my etsy shop - which again I am trying to figure out and add to. So check it out sinderellastudio.etsy.com!

Make today count! My mantra for a Monday!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

I'm becoming computerized!

Yikes. I've decided to go into cyber-space and figure out how to talk to artist so I can continue to learn and grow. This all came about in such a weird way. My close friend, and fellow artist, Joy Tallman got it started. She is a Quilt Artist, awesome I might add! Let me know if you'd like to see her work. She got me hooked on Quilting Arts magazine - which then sent me to Cloth Paper Scissors. I then read an article in Cloth, Paper, Scissors that sent me back in an artistic direction! Pam Carriker wrote "art at the speed of life" and it got me going. I sent her an email - she really answered! I entered a contest, at her suggestion, at Mind Wide Open! I am inspired and motivated to reach deep inside and begin to create that which has been pushed aside for, I don't know, about 18 years.
I want to be an artist! When I grow up of course. And at 51, I better hurry up. This will be my place to get inspiration, get feedback and to get going!!!
Hope to hear from others that have recently unlocked the artist within!

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