Tuesday, December 15, 2009


JACKSON AND CAMERON !!! Jackson is SIX today and Cameron is FOUR !!! Both had fun this past Sunday celebrating. Jackson had Grandpa Mark all to himself and built a clay model car! He gets to go to the indoor waterpark this weekend to celebrate! Cameron had her first big party at the roller rinker - fun for all - and thank goodness no broken bones! Big day for both! Got to love those g-kids! Full photo shoot later today on facebook.

Monday, November 30, 2009

December already

I can't believe I haven't posted since Halloween. Missed Thanksgiving wishes to all and now are heading into December. I took my ABO boards on the 15th and left the testing site confident that I did well. I truly hope I am in the 90's but for sure know that I was at least in the 80%'s. We don't get our results back for 4-6 weeks so now we wait.
I have had all the g-kids over for a Saturday - four of them staying the whole night. Six kids at once ranging from 6 1/2 down to 3 months is a challenge. Our son in law, Bennett was of great help and much fun for the kids. We went to Art Unlimited and painted pottery for them to give the mom's for xmas. Mark and I picked up the finished pieces this weekend and everything came out great. The kids will be so surprised at how different their pieces look once back from the kiln. They had some trouble understanding that the paint color they picked for the projects wasn't the color coming out of the tube. I think I will go back and paint a piece myself - it was a memorable day together.
I have also met with a gal to work on editing photos and posting my artwork online. That is now my focus. I plan on doing at least 6 shows for 2010. Two of which I think I will do here just like the August event. It went well, everyone sold their work and we had a blast. So, if you see any info regarding artshows - please pass it along to me.
Well off to the treadmill - we have signed up to do the 1/2 marathon in Key West - January 31st (Landon's 3rd b-day) 2010. I really need to get my butt in gear to make this event. In July I was up to 20 miles a week for the first time in forever and lost all that due to knee problems and getting wrapped up in artwork. So did 9 miles last week - a long ways away from where I need to be - but - I am going to make it happen!!!!
Happy Birthday today to Chelsea!!!! Ben's fiance - a wonderful person, mom to Landon (and soon another son due in January ) and partner to Ben!
Make a great day!

Monday, November 2, 2009

GREAT FUN FOR MY G-KIDS! These are the halloween decorations I made for the kids. Too
much sugar to eat! Their houses were really decked out for the holiday! Check out my facebook to see photos later today. Time to buckle down and study. My state boards are in 14 days!!!
Today, Ben starts the Fire Academy. I could not be prouder!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Tomorrow he is 22!
Wow, time flies.
Make a GREAT November!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


I have great fun planned for Saturday morning. I purchased sugar skulls from Mama Bears Cafe in old town to paint for Cloee, Cameron and Landon. I am painting them so they won't eat them - way to much of a sugar buzz. For the girls I am adding butterfly wings and false eyelashes with gemstone eyes - "yes can't help but sing Betty Davis eyes as I plan this fun." Haven't decided exactly how I will do Landon's but will post pictures when finished.
I think Mark and I will put on our Harley gear with some scary make-up and sit out front with a fire going to had out candy. Each year I am disappointed that there are not more kids out there. When I grew up this was a BIG night. Of course, the world wasn't filled with as many crazy/sickos. Kids also were outside more and not glued to their tv sets and computers. Oh well, times change and we all march on.

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Wow, these shows are long and I really need some different display stuff to be able to show all that I now have. Did sell some note cards and prints - big stuff needs a more art driven venue verse crafters. Thanks to my mom for helping and her jewelry was awesome. Also, Sid Delaney's work drew alot of attention. Alot of other young people were impressed and said they were going to try and do some work to show. Saw lots of old car customers, Jenny Craig clients and new optical patients so it was fun. I am getting to work on opening a shop on etsy.com so will keep you posted when I am on board.

Had a great family and friends get together for Mark's b-day but sad his sister couldn't make it in from Colorado. Then off to our annual bonfire at Spedoske's - great fun every year - his fires keep you warm no matter what!

Make a great week!


Friday, October 16, 2009


HOLDIAY CRAFT SHOW ... Sinderella Studio Designs will be there!!! booth 128! 9am - 4pm
Prints, notecards, originals and showing work from 2 new contributors to the studio:
Helen - gemstone earrings - awesome
and Sidney Delaney.
Helen has beeen doing jewelry for over 20 years. Her work is exquisite. We will be showing earrings only for this show. She has been written up in Michigan newspapers and many own her unique one of a kind creations.
Sidney is an eleven year old with an eye for color. Her art matches her spirit when you meet her. Great fun and an inspiration for other young people interested in art to jump into it and show their work!
Hope to see you Saturday!

Saturday, October 10, 2009


When I worked in the Emergency Room I had daily reminders on how short life was... when you leave that environment you - once again - start to take life for granted. A friend of Mark's, Brian, passed away in the early hours of Friday October 9th. Great guy, super wife, Harley rider/lover... he was the one that got Mark hot to get a bike. That bike really makes Mark smile! We were supposed to have done a color tour this past birthday weekend with Brian & Kay. He was diagnosed with lung, bone and liver cancer a few short weeks ago and is now gone. We saw him on Tuesday, he still had a spark - his sparks were always mellow - and you left wanting him to make it home so badly. Treasure all that you have - quit looking at the other guy with envy. Move forward - hug your family every single day and smile at a stranger!
love, me
-a good man will be missed!-

Sunday, October 4, 2009

5k at the BIG HOUSE

What a great time running with my sons - well not literally as they were quite a ways ahead of
me but still... Becky & Chelsea were there with all the kids - even Mason tucked inside that stroller. As I approached the tunnel they were there cheering me on - and I needed it (hadn't really trained). It was cool coming out into the stadium at that level - then Alex and Ben were waiting at the finish! It was cold - but check out what Alex ran in! I will treasure today! GET OUT AND GO DO SOMETHING FUN WITH YOUR FAMILY! Thanks kids!
Love, mom / grandma

Thursday, October 1, 2009


Happy B-Day to Amy!!! And tomorrow - SUPER HUGE HAPPY BIRTHDAY to the man of my dreams, my husband Mark!!!! He will be 60 !!! - so it is a big b-day!!! Of course, he is working like a madman to be ready for a race in CA next weekend so - probably won't get to celebrate too much! - AND - Happy B-Day on Saturday to Michele - one L - keep it safe girl!
Just an art update and run update... Things are really looking good for the October 17th Haslett High School Holiday show. We will have plenty of note cards and very affordable prints - as well as original works! My friend Debbie, that has been helping and teaching me about having prints done has just wowed me with all that can be done.
This Sunday I will be running in THE BIG HOUSE !!! WITH MY TWO SONS!!! I am sooooo excited that we are doing this together. And it is a big deal that we are starting at U of M outside the stadium - running a 5k and finishing by - do you hear this Matt - running into the stadium THRU THE TUNNEL and finishing on the 50 yard line!!! My boys have been going to games there since they were little - I mean infant size - so this is going to be fun (slow for me but fun). The Optometry Giving Sight World Challenge Day is officially October 8th and we have raised a nice donation for this great cause. Our company run had to be cancelled but we are still working to support this Challenge Day! As a whole we are promoting this organization and its ability to make a difference! Thanks to all that donated to my sponsorship - this money will give sight to people that have never seen glasses!
Oh yes - and it is big game day Saturday - I hope it is a Great Game - but as always my heart is with the maize and blue...GO BLUE - BEAT STATE !!!

Saturday, September 19, 2009


Is the title of this print and -yes- note cards! I am not sure
that the original will be for sale.
I love it!!! The sun is out and the air is sooooooooo
fresh - regardless of your age - get your crayons out
and COLOR!!! This piece is a watercolor wash -
with graphite pencil, watersoluble crayons &
watercolor pencils.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

time flies - SAVE THE DATE 10/17

I can't believe it has been weeks since I have posted anything - and a month since the art show. Many good things going on. I have some prints in hand of the rooster "Rise & Shine" without matting they are $12.50 each. My cardinal, "Tilly II" is also available in print! Two more paintings on the way - and I am pricing out the note cards - should be available in a week or so - you know depending on how much I get done this week.
Mark your calendar for October 17th !!! So many things going on that weekend but I will be participating in the "Holidays in Haslett Craft Show" at the Haslett High School. Also adding one of a kind gemstone earrings to this show! And INTRODUCING a new contributor to Sinderella Studio, Sid Delaney, an up and coming 11 year old artist, with prints and note cards available.
The show runs from 9:00am - 4:00pm: HOPE TO SEE YOU THERE.

Sunday, August 30, 2009


This is a sample of my new note cards that will be produced soon. This belongs to the series "soul notes", we will have a "Sophie Series" - and yes - a "Giving Sight Series" with proceeds for that going to Optometry Giving Sight. Keep checking in as I will be posting updates on selection and availability. Look for my 5 X 7 & 8 X 10 prints too!
MAKE a great day!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

RX Optical

As you all know, I am loving my new career as an Optician. This positive work environment is perfect and our company is proactive in helping others- RX Optical is sponsoring a walk/run in Kalamazoo. It is going to be a fund raiser for Optometry Giving Sight. - Please check out the link, it is a worthy cause. Mark and I will be there - It is October 11th - more details to follow. We are looking to raise $100 each - so if you would like to donate send me an email! If you would like to PARTICIPATE - send me an email and I will get you a registration form.
dana http://www.givingsight.org/world_sight_day/index.asp

Monday, August 17, 2009


A great success and adventure for our "beginning" group of artists! A few flyers up in some local places of business - corner signs on the street - and word of mouth! We had traffic despite the heat & humidity and really put our names out there. It was great fun being together and meeting our shoppers. I think people were expecting a garage sale type of thing and were WOWED by our "ART THING!!!" Super special thanks to my husband who tolerated a week of choas (more than my normal choas) as we got close AND then all he did to help set up - forfeiting most of his plans for the day to do so!!! He is the man of my dreams.

Thanks to all that participated! Heidi (aka Renee) - Forget me not Bags - please click on her link - shop with her - the website photos really don't show how terrific these pieces are! Joan -aka EleganZ by JIX - truly beautiful gemstone jewelry! Joy Tallman - Joyful Designs - her Quilts drew people in off the streets! Anthony of Anthony's recycled works - fun creative custom lamps and more! and Chelsea - my future daughter in law with her fun candy towers for the holidays! and my special one for my Key West obsession! If you missed the show and would like to inquire about anyone of these artist or are interested in viewing something to purchase - send me a note and we will get you what you need!

It was a special day - and we will be moving forward with MORE !!!!

MAKE a great day!


Monday, August 10, 2009

HERE HE IS : MASON ALEXANDER WASSON, he weighed 6.15 and is 20" long born Aug.6th!
He is, of course, super cute! His sisters are crazy about him already. I am thankful for happy healthy children and grandchildren! Life is grand! Don't forget - THIS SUNDAY - 8/16 -
ARTIST BY THE LAKE *11:00 - 4 pm * pray for good weather - please come by and see all the great work!!!
dana - aka GRAMS

Monday, August 3, 2009

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Artist Trading Cards

I finally completed my cards to go back to San Diego! I received 3 beautiful origami cards (aren't they grand!) and in exchange was sending
3 back with the theme for summer,
as I mentioned earlier, - baseball - hotdogs ...

My recipient is a Padres fan, of course, so here are my cards:


Friday, July 17, 2009

The Show is building

DON'T FORGET TO MARK YOUR CALENDARS!!! August 16th - 11:00 - 5:00
"Artists by the Lake" will be having our first show! Come meet the creators and find something for yourself, your home or great gifts to share. We are a small group that is growing - no overhead so you can buy right and support local talent. We will have a drawing for a "street prize" (we don't have a door) - so come on by!
Check out the Forget me Not Handbags link - the designer, Renee, will be here herself!
See ya!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

I've read before - but worth re-reading from time to time

One day a woman's husband died, and on that clear, cold morning, in the warmth of their bedroom, the wife was struck with the pain of learning that sometimes there isn't "anymore". No more hugs, no more special moments to celebrate together, no more phone calls just to chat, no more "just one minute." Sometimes, what we care about the most gets all used up and goes away, never to return before we can say good-bye, say"I love you." So while we have it, it's best we love it, care for it, fix it when it's broken and heal it when it's sick. This is true for marriage.....And old cars... And children with bad report cards, and dogs with bad hips, and aging parents and grandparents. We keep them because they are worth it, because we are worth it. Some things we keep -- like a best friend who moved away or a sister-in-law after divorce. There are just some things that make us happy, no matter what. Life is important, like people we know who are special. And so, we keep them close! I received this from someone who thought I was a 'keeper'! Then I sent it to the people I think of in the same way. Suppose one morning you never wake up, do all your friends know you love them? I was thinking...I could die today, tomorrow or next week, and I wondered if I had any wounds needing to be healed, friendships that needed rekindling or three words needing to be said. Let every one of your friends know you love them. Even if you think they don't love you back, you would be amazed at what those three little words and a smile can do. And just in case I'm gone tomorrow. I LOVE YA!!! Live today to the fullest because tomorrow is not promised.
thanks Debbie - dana

Saturday, July 11, 2009

paradise in our backyard

It is funny how we are always looking to go somewhere else...as an artist, looking for somewhere to take my sketch pad and get sucked in by the surroundings. Well, I went to another artist's home, my stepmom's. She has built a beautiful little paradise just minutes away. You pull in the drive and you think you have discovered "the secret garden". Her gardens are breathtaking and you just want to pull out the easel and settle in for the day - which I am sure I will do at some point. Every room in her home is soothing and yet inspiring to go deep within and create something. She is working on a mural with colored pencil in one of her rooms - makes you want to come home and color on the walls! I am pondering which wall I will attempt this artistic challenge. It was a great visit and can't wait to go back.

In the meantime I have been working on Tilly, my bird, more to do but here she is so far.

make a great day!


Thursday, July 9, 2009


Time to let go of some stuff - doing a garage sale this Sunday - July 12th. corner of Shaw and Lake Dr. - some pretty cooool stuff I might add. Anyways - making room for the up coming Art Show! Stop by and check out my treasures.

Thursday, July 2, 2009


I am planning an art show: Artist's on the Drive
August 16th - a Sunday! 11:00 - 5:00
I am seeking some more participants. If you are local and would like to display your work - please contact me. There will be no charge to you - just some local exposure. There may be traffic - may not be - but a day of shared creative energy and hopefully some sales.
You can email me at sinderellastudio@yahoo.com

Monday, June 29, 2009


I just sent an email to blogs@americantowns.com . I hope to get some visitors from that site. I am definitely trying to find local- within reasonable miles - some art show/festivals to apply to show my work. I had considered applying to the local co-op gallery - great place in old town: Artisian Circle - but, I really can't produce enough work to justify the expense and time I'd have to work there. I can't be sure that my schedule at work will stay the same once put out and can't risk a committment I can't keep at the gallery. So, anyone that knows of a gallery excepting consignment - PLEASE GIVE ME A SHOUT!
Next week I start an online class for doing self-portraits - insight to my soul and educational artistic experience - can't wait!
Anyone interested in doing an "artist trading card" exchange, again, give me a shout. I am currently working on a 3 card trade with an orgami artist in San Deigo. My theme back to her is baseball, hotdogs & apple pie! (no not Chevrolet, I'm still a Ford girl)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Morning song

This morning I was lying in bed knowing that my alarm was about to go off. I was listening to all the activity outside the balcony doorwall. The birds were chirping, the sun was cresting the top of the trees - I could tell by how bright the room was. Sort of eyes opened, eyes closed - a loud morning wake up call came from outside the door - I was startled but smiled - wow - like a morning rooster but a bird. Sounds really close - I sat up to see the male cardinal -RAY- perched on top of the back of the rocker on the balcony. Gazing into our bedroom chirping loudly as if to say - GET UP - GET GOING! He looked at me and then flew away, his job was done. So I got up and got going. 4.3 miles around the lake with Sophie - it was a struggle. Off to work now. Enjoy the day!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

no time for art...

seems to be a topic I read about on art blog after art blog. It is true. While in Key West, Sanford said YOU MUST make time for art! I read that over and over also and yet - hear, say and read - no time for art. Thursday I got up at my usual time and sat with my coffee staring out my "morning window" (I have many windows to the world). I got up and ran the whole lake, it was a struggle just didn't have that bounce. Came in showered and knew I had to grocery shop for dinner that night and a friend coming on Friday. I had planned to do it on lunch BUT I had plenty of time to get it done before work so why not pick up the pace and get it out of the way. Off to Meijers I went and it was all put away in time for me to get to work. Lunch hour came and I thought - wow - I can relax. I came home and puttered on my art table. This little bird is another favorite of mine to watch out my kitichen window. I call her Tillie and her mate, who I plan to paint later is Ray. Anyways - I plan on doing some more on this piece, it is just in my sketch book but I love her.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Need for knowledge

Wow- I keep checking out all these artistic blogs and really need to know how to become interactive. So much information out there - challenges that anyone can do - don't have to consider yourself an artist. Great stuff to do with your kids -or - in my case GRANDKIDS. Make bookmarks, trading cards, jewelry, wall art yadda yadda yadda. My goal is to figure this computer stuff out so that my art can be seen and I can grow.
I have to say that I am so much more relaxed and inspired now that I am working in a positive environment. For the most part I am only working a 40 hour week - again, so relaxing in comparison to the last 6 years. Part of that change was to create art but also to get back in shape. I am happy to say that I am back up to 20 miles a week!!! I am walk/running - not like before when I ran the whole time BUT I am starting to run more than walk - so I am turning the corner. I keep wondering why I am still not getting more done with this new found time BUT I AM !!! I am up to 20 miles a week for pete sakes. That does take a chunk of time. Also, Mark and I are doing the Michigan Brewing Co. 5k run next weekend, that will be a blast. And the BIG NEWS is that ALEX is going to run the Crim with me - 10 miles!!! Alex! I am so excited and impressed with his commitment.
I am signed up for another online workshop that starts in July with Pam Carriker. I am also doing a self-taught art book on watercolor. I am treating this like a class! I have it scheduled in to start next week and have it on my calendar for the next 5 weeks to complete.
So - off to work now - I did 3 miles this morning but have a weird schedule this week so have to do some doubling up - 2 more when I get home tonight before the WINGS GAME !

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sharing Art at Grams!

I had three of the grandkids this weekend; Alex's girls -Cloee (soon to be six), her sister Cameron (3 - although she insists she is four) and Landon ( Ben's boy who is two). We painted, colored, ate apples in carmel sauce - be prepared if you serve that to kids, screamed for the Red Wings, baked cookies, walked Sophie and fed the birds. Great fun - here is their art gallery currently hanging in our livingroom.

Sunday, May 17, 2009


What an artful day I've had. It started with a walk/run around the lake this morning with Sophie. It was chilly but sooooooo beautiful. I took a couple pictures for painting ideas that I will be working on over the next few weeks. Then off for a quick pass through the East Lansing Art Festival. I was only able to catch a 1/4 of it and it was ALL excellent. So much talent and so much of it local! Then back home to get ready to accompany my friend Joy to her FIRST exhibit. If you recall I had mentioned that she entered her quilts in the Quilt Show. She had four entries - all just breathtaking. Seriously - quilting is an art form. As a painter I find much inspiration and many ideas in the art quilting world. She should be very proud of her work and her first time out! Like me, she did not have the outcome that was hoped for but it is a learn and grow event. Both her and I will be better next time, so look out!

Saturday, May 16, 2009


Reading - practicing and expanding my comfort zone. I am taking the online class that Pam Carriker is offering on faces. As I am trying to create my own style by learning techniques from those who's art I respect. My paintings are nothing like her delicate soothing works yet I can learn so much from her. The journaling class I took - opened new doors. I can't wait for July to get started on this additional adventure.
Also following the Pastelfish - her words today - I sooooooooo needed to hear! Just Paint!
Happy Saturday everyone!

Sunday, May 10, 2009


I just came from having muffins and coffee with my Mom. She is really quite a story. My mom has had many peaks and valleys in her 75 years - and I have watched 52 years of them. I think the biggest loss in my mom's life was her father, she was sixteen. I am not sure that she ever really has stopped remembering that day. He was her hero! She has had some bumpy rides for marriage but really we all learn and grow from those. Her and my dad were married 14 years - if nothing else they got the 4 D's and that made it worth while regardless. We are all different and have been needy at different times in our lives. She has always been there! My brother Dan is a constant for her, it does limit her ability to live life to its fullest in these years. She marches forward and makes him come along for the ride. Most remarkably she picked up a few years ago and went to Reno - the opportunity sounded too good to pass up - seriously. I was all on board and thought it would be great. Well, it wasn't all it was cracked up to be so back to Michigan she came. I am in total admiration for mom, the courage it took to do that most of us don't have at twenty, she was 69 if I remember right.
My mom in the last 15 years has somehow become comfortable with herself, most of the time. That wasn't always the case. She has always been ahead of her time and a hard worker! She did whatever it took to keep our family running. For a person who in earlier years, really lacked self-confidence - you would never know it by the way she carried herself. Always able to present herself in a professional energetic fashion. Through her outward actions and talks with me she taught me to believe in myself, probably alittle too much. Everything I did, she admired and encouraged me to continue. Both my parents taught the work ethic - give more than you get. My mom, though, taught me to reach beyond myself and never look back. I credit that for my success in each career move I have made. I always started knowing nothing and ended up a top performer, well recoginized and respected. My mom does seem a little scattered at times - we lovingly call it "Helen's Disease", which by the way I have inherited. But really all artist are scattered in some way. She represented me at my artshow last week and my husband said she never looked more beautiful. He had never seen her so happy. My response; "My mom was in her element!" She is a people person and an artist. She belongs to the public when she is in it. When she had her store - people came in because they were drawn to it, it was amazing. I really wish she had been able to stay there - just, again, alittle ahead of her time.
On this mothers day - I again - recognize my mom for all she has given up for others, all she has taught me! She is an inspiration, that at times has made me crazy (as I'm sure I have done to her). She is a woman that I admire and respect. She has given me her wide hips and I have her wrinkle lines but more importantly she has given me a piece of her inner soul - made me much of who I am! Today I gave her a small token of my thanks. An artist trading card to carry. I call it pocket sunshine. I told her to look at it whenever she needs a boost, a smile, a feel good! That is what she has always given me!

Sunday, May 3, 2009


Okay - the walk was sort of a bust for me. My station was 3 blocks out from the main loop, so no one really walked down to it. A few people drove - received great comments about my work and did sell an artist trading card! So, all things considered, I am happy that I did it. My art displayed well and the feedback was positive.

I would also like to thank Stacy, owner of Divine K-9 Spa! She was a great host and her place is super cute and functional. She not only does grooming but offers a do it yourself service. No more back breaking tub washing for your dog or cat. She has these awesome shower-like tubs that are waist high and you stand and get the job done. Great gift items for pet lovers too! Stop in and check her out. The building is tucked in alittle so you might miss it. 502 E Grand River - next to the Citgo Station, across the street from the Nascar Fan's house!!! Thanks Stacy!

I am going to start work on a couple additional pieces that I think will be bigger and am planning an art tent sale - here - I think I will call it "A Deck-O-Art Sale" ( a spinoff of deco art), what do you think??? I have several artist friends that would participate and I know that we'd get more traffic than what I had in Williamston. Pencil it in for the weekend of July 12th - I will keep you posted.

Friday, May 1, 2009

I'm off to the ART WALK

Here are 2 of the pieces I am taking. I don't really do the photos for the computer very well but hope you get the feel of each painting. It is a bit chilly out but at least it's not raining. I hope that the event is a success! I feel good about it already - I have stepped way outside my box and am happy with whatever goes on over the next 2 days! If I sell something - great! and if not, I will not be disappointed in the experience. Again, hope to see you there! dana

Thursday, April 30, 2009


Hope to see you! Here is the bio I will be presenting with my work.

SINDERELLA STUDIO DESIGNS ... is my artist outlet! My name is Dana Strickland and I work mainly in watercolors. I am self-taught through trial and error! AND several great workshops. I have taken watercolor classes with Edee Joppich out of the Livonia Arts Council some 20 years ago now. Most recently I spent a week in Key West painting "en plein air" with Sandford Birdsey. What a fantastic experience. These two women have opened a whole new world to me and continue to be a source of inspiration.

As I said, I had taken some workshops 20 years ago but really hadn't painted for the last 15 years. I recently made a career change that has allowed me more time to devote to my family, friends, and one of my passions - PAINT! I am thankful for all those that continue to encourage and support this decsiion; number one, my husband, Mark. My mother is my biggest advocate, she has many of my paintings in her home! Sandy, who bought me my first set of paints - I was thirty something - it is never to late to start! And my friends Nancy, Joy and Jackie - who believe in me without conditions.

I hope you enjoy my work!
Thanks for visiting! dana

Titles of the work I will be showing:
Rememberance - Magical Mystery Tour - A Perching Space - Island House and
Everyone is Welcome

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Okay - well I found the Divine K-9 Spa ! A super cute place on the edge of the main trek in Williamston. It is at 502 E Grand River - next to the Citgo gas station on the south side of the street. It is about a 5 block walk back into the main four corners and is the start of the art walk. I am sure most will drive. I am hoping for great weather. I had my second piece framed yesterday and am pleased with it. Now I am starting my third piece for the show and hope to get it done in time. I will have a guest book to sign and a short bio - my mom is ready for Saturday as my stand in! This should be fun, I am starting to get excited! Hope to see you there! Starts Friday 4pm - 8 pm through Saturday 10am - 2 pm. I will be there Friday, have to work Saturday but Helen will be keeping it jumping, I'm sure.

Thursday, April 16, 2009


Okay I received my location for the Williamston Art Walk. I didn't really have a clue as to what was going to go on or how this worked when I signed up. The event is sponsored by the Williamston Chamber so obviously it would have to somehow promote Williamston business's. Having lived in Williamston for 6 years that works for me. So the walk (which really has to be a drive for parts of it ) starts at the Divine Canine. That is where I will be! It is more toward Webberville on Grand River and is a new business for Williamston. They get me, a newbie artist. I now feel compelled to try and do 4 or 5 pieces. Not sure I can produce what I would want people to look at that quickly - let alone pay to frame them. We'll see. I am off tomorrow so taking a ride by to see where I will be and go in so that I can introduce myself. I need to figure out how I will display and probably freak out about needing to have really good work. After the Divine Canine the "walk" moves in toward town. I don't have a listing yet of all the participants but plan to get the local paper this weekend. All sales give a 20% donation to the Chamber of Commerce for Williamston. It is a great way to build community spirit and showcase the cute town. The event is going to have a 50/50 raffle and all kinds of drawings and prizes. I hope that the weather is cooperative so lots of people come out for the trek.
I will keep you posted - and will be busy for the next 2 weeks figuring out my work!!!

Monday, April 6, 2009


What great fun! And, they were surprised!!! Everyone showed up with pics from the past. Great memories. Life is so fast we all forget special times. It is good to be reminded. My Uncle Ron and Aunt Myrna showed up with pics of my mom at 6 yrs old, what a treasure. It was so nice to see everyone and share a special day. My brother Dean was on the phone while we sang Happy Birthday so we all participated. Thanks to everyone for coming. I love you all!!!

Friday, April 3, 2009


Well I am planning a "sort of" surprise party for my mom and dad. Their birthdays are
April 7th, so they are coming to grill this Sunday afternoon. They are expecting all the kids, my brother Dale and his family. But, I have my mom's brother and wife coming, my cousins from my dad's side and their mom, 3 of my friends that are now my mom's friends and possibly my best bud from jr. high and a friend of my parents for as long as I can remember that my dad probably hasn't seen in 30 yrs. If she shows up - my mom won't believe it because she does not travel very far from home and this would be a trip. Anyways, it will be great fun to see their faces as each person shows up - who knows - everyone might show up in the driveway at the same time. Don't know where we are going to put everyone but it will be a blast. I've asked everyone to bring a picture that is a blast from the past. I have had a blast going through old photos. I went to my dad's 2 weeks ago under the cover that I need some pictures for mom's birthday because she had lost all hers years ago. So my dad has no idea the pictures are being put together for him too. I am off tomorrow and have so much to do to get ready. Thank goodness Claudia, my sister in law, is making the cake! My dad is turning 76 and my mom 75!
After this weekend I need to get cracking on my art project for the Williamston Art Walk on
May 1st!!!

Monday, March 23, 2009


I have accomplished so much since starting my new job. I did 16 miles last week!!! It has been 4 years since I've done that. Granted it was fast walking and not running but I should be able to start the running this week. I plan on slowly adding it and building up to all running! I feel so much better and have finally lost a few pounds. I thoroughly enjoy my 10:00 start time to Monday - Thursday. I get up early and have my coffee - then get going without a frenzied pace - work out, do some cleaning or laundry whatever. Each day I get more done than a did in a week selling cars. The other thing is that I am catching up with family. I was off Friday and went to meet my dad for breakfast - a mall walk with his golfing buddies - and some time going through old family info. Then I stopped and saw Landon, Chelsea and Ben. It was a great visit even though short. On the way out of Dodge I stopped and surprised my Mom and Dan with a request for coffee. Again, a fun little visit. On the road again home I stopped and shopped for the dinner I was making for my friend Joy who was coming over that night. We had Tilpia using my brothers recipe for the orange roughy, it was yummy. Caught up on our artistic adventures. She has entered four quilts in the quilt show for the E Lansing guild - and then of course, I shared that I will be in the Williamston Art Walk. Worked on Saturday but who cares when you had a day off! It was a fun change also, I worked in the Lansing location. Busy and I actually handled a couple patients on my own! I was supposed to have all the grandkids but their plans were changed sooooooooo Sunday was my day - I never left the house. It was grand. Worked out, cleaned and cooked! It was just so pleasant and relaxing. So, off to my new week! Mark is due home late this afternoon - his first race of the year - he saw old friends and had a great race!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

sharing art

I was recently invited to attend an artist reception at Mackeral Sky by my friend Jean. I wasn't able to make it but finally had a chance to check it out. There is a brief youtube about the gallery and a visit to the artist, Sandra Davison's blog, is an inspiring one! Her work takes you in and you feel as if you are there. It is soft yet strong! I hope to have a minute to go into Mackeral Sky while her exhibit is there this month! I have added Sandra's blog to my list that I follow, check it out. Thanks for sharing Jean.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Well, I feel like I'm becoming one. I WILL BE IN THE WILLIAMSTON ART WALK !!! My first showing of my work. YIKES. Excitement and fear all in the same breath. I will only have 2 pieces - maybe 3 (probably not) but wow. Save the dates and stop by - please.
May 1st is a Friday and I will be there 4pm - 8pm. Saturday I have to work but will have someone there, hopefully my mom, to represent me. Saturday is 10 am - 2 pm. The show is at the Williamston Chamber of Commerce right on Grand River in Williamston. All sales include a donation from the sale to the Chamber from the artist. It is a great fundraising event. I will keep you updated as the event gets closer.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


As my dad is Irish - we always celebrate St. Patty's Day. Unfortunately, we will not be able to join everyone for dinner tonight. I really can't justify taking a day off from my new job to go eat corned beef - BUT - I am making a pot of it for our dinner tonight at home!

I just finished a baby shower invitation for my friend, Michele's daughter Lindsay. She gave me an idea to copy and I took artistic privilege and made it her own. It was fun to do and I'm happy with the result.

I am trying to enter my first artshow but, of course, missed the deadline for request for entry. I have sent a plea in to be considered anyways and am awaiting an answer. Please keep your fingers crossed. My goal this year, one of them but a key one, is to sell my art this year. Get involved in the artisitc community. I will let you know what happens and if accepted - all the details!

Go Irish - Go Green! As a U of M fan, this is the only day of the year that you'll hear that from me.

Cheers, Dana

Thursday, March 12, 2009


The BIG NEWS OF THE DAY: Alex and Becky are having a BOY !!!
Ben is starting the Fire Academy, November 2nd !!!
I am beaming from ear to ear!
I am on my fourth week at RX Optical and loving it. I have time in the morning to workout - finally back in action. I can get a few things done around the house. We have been able to catch up with some family time. Last Friday (I had THE DAY OFF ) and was able to spend a few hours with my friend, Nancy ( a new Grandma herself ), and we had sooooo much fun; chatting, laughing about our trip to Jamaica and just soaking up the sun. Remember, there was that ONE day recently where it was WARM & SUNNY. This week I have the weekend OFF and plan on spending an artful day in my room!!! Then Mark and I will be grilling and enjoying time before he heads out on the road next week. Back racing this season!
Well, off to the treadmill - miles to go before work!!
Excited about life! dana

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Birthdays & Family's

I finally made it to my mom's for my birthday dinner. My brother Dan had planned an excellent menu - Cilantro-Lime Orange Roughy (way outside his normal box). It was melt in your mouth good! The side dishes were just as great. Mark and I ate and enjoyed! The dessert included Sanders toppings - if you are a Detroiter you KNOW that was good. Brings back memories of walking a mile to the Sanders shop on 7 mile rd and sitting at the counter eating hot fudge cream puffs (coldstone has nothing on that!). We are not supposed to do gifts but My MOM did a special photo - the pictures I've posted are me at two in our yard in Detroit. I still remember our address 19484 Bentler! It was the best place to grow up! Seriously! The second is me and my son Alex at his wedding almost two years ago! He is holding his second daughter Cameron at 18 months (just about equal to me in my picture). WOW, alot goes on in 50 plus years. I will look at these pictures every day and smile with pride and treasured thoughts of growing up with my family!
Here we are stuffed and happy - me, my mom and my brother Dan. THANK YOU FOR A GREAT DAY!
All my love. Dana
p.s. if you want the recipe for the orange roughy just send me an email:

Thursday, February 26, 2009

sad day

Yesterday Ben and Chelsea miscarried and lost their baby. They are so young and I was worried about how they would handle two children. I am sad deep down because they were really happy with this new life and I can't say or do anything to fix it for them. I love all my children and grandchildren beyond words, it is painful to watch them hurt.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Fellow Journal Artist

Wow - as I have said - the journaling 101 online class really was an artisitc eye opener. This morning I was able to finally view some other participants work! It is soooooooo inspiring to see what others create. Check out http://goldbettyboop.blogspot.com/ I will be following her blog - talented and looks like fun!

Back to my pages - it is a day to get out the paint and pencils!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

new job

Okay - my first week at RX Optical. I was, of course, just in the way mainly but can tell that I will like it! The patients are nice, the staff is nice and the training program looks thorough. The best part - I was able to work out in the morning and tackle some housework each day - go to work - come home and not feel pressured because I had already gotten things done. Then the biggest deal - I had yesterday OFF.
News of the week - my friend Nancy became a grandma to a bouncing baby boy! "Boy" is her world going to change!!! She will be the perfect Nana!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

mini portraits

I have wanted to do this painting for 3 years and NOW have time. It is Cloee in her Halloween costume at 2. It is my first attempt - and I over worked it but I'm proud of it just the same. I want to do a color series with my grandkids - CLOEE IS THE ESSENCE OF PINK !!!
More to come.

Friday, February 13, 2009


Okay - today I turn 52 !!! I have once again decided to change direction! My family, friends and growing art experiences are my priority. When down in Key West, Sanford stated "Treat yourself with respect and importance - treat your art with respect and importance. Don't tolerate disrespectful behavior from others, move on". SO TODAY IS MY DAY TO DO JUST THAT !!! I am OFFICIALLY OUT OF THE CAR BUSINESS!!! I will have time to enjoy family, friends and art again. I have taken a position with RX Optical in Okemos. I will be working in a pleasant professional and positive environment! As I learn and have more to share I will do so. I am very anxious to get started. I will be working 40 hours - haven't done that in about 10 years! Mark is hoping that I get a handle on all my piles with this extra time on my hands. I hope I get my piles under control, have time to get back in shape and definitely have time to create!
This year I want to experience more times like:
All our kids and grandkids hanging out - water splashing, laughter, chalk drawings and lots of hugs - I did mention by the end of summer we will have seven - holy smokes!
this past fall when friends all got together with Chef Francesca and drank wine, laughed and hugged all while Francesca showed us how to put on a great Italian dinner - check her out: http://www.casadicesca.com/
More times like hanging out with friends on the deck with Mark at the grill and Sophie playing fetch.
More time to experience art classes and retreat trips like Key West!
Definitely want to train to run the 1/2 marathon in Key West again for January 2010 - wow that looks weird.
I hope I can fit it all in!
This is going to be a great year!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

journaling 101

What an eye opener. I have several pages with watercolor washes - haven't had much time for cut and paste work soooooooooooo have really gotten into the doodle work and words! Scribbled, wiggly, large, small - letters - word triggers to go back to when more time. What I am so amazed at is how much that free's me up!!! I go to work without garbage on my brain - I look at the pages throughout my work day and get refreshed! I can't wait to work on them at home without interruption - my journey back into art has taken a huge turn with this experience!
Please check out the workshops offered at the Shabby Cottage!
Check out the two blogs I currently follow for more inspiration!


Tuesday, January 27, 2009


Well, I announced that grandbaby number six is on the way and have since found out that grandbaby number seven is also on the way. Alex and Becky will be having their third child in August. Ben and Chelsea will be having their second child end of September. Wow. I pray for happy healthy children!
love, me

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Book/journal binding

Here it is - Joy's journal.

Joyful Designs represents her traditional / business side that she shows to the world.

Sinderella's Sister is her true self that she only gives glimpses of to others.

So, depending on how she feels on any particular day she can open up from that side and... sketch, plan, write and create!!!

I have never done book binding - this was a great experience.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

creating from within

Well I finally got online to participate in the art journaling 101. I am really excited and have only been able to do a small amount of work but am so encouraged. This is a way to keep art flowing from within even though there is not alot of time. My journal is out and I can spend 3 minutes adding to it here and there -or- should I get the opportunity to work in my artroom, I can really add to the pages as I work on other projects. The journaling is different from what I would normally be doing so learning the techniques of others really expands my vision and thinking.
I am also completing a project for a gift for my friend Joy. It is a Christmas gift so obviously it is late. I am making her a journal, if you remember I have discussed that she too is an artist, a quilting artist. She keeps a design book and this will be another avenue for her to record her visions. I believe she as a dual personality. One of the traditional quilter and the other that flows from deep within creating outstanding works of art. I have painted two covers for this journal. On the days that she feels traditional she can open the book from that cover - the days that she feels she must be outside of the box, she can open from that side of the cover. Today my mission is to bind the book and finish off the cover. I will post pictures.
I really feel that my art world is opening up in a big way and this is the year that I will be comfortable stating that I am an artist!!!
Thank you to all that have shared in my vision.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Computer challenged!!!

Well - as part of my commitment to myself and my art for 2009 I signed up for an online course - Journaling 101 with Pam Carriker. Challenged is a polite way of saying, "I don't have a clue as to how to manivure through the internet!!!" So, now I have paid to learn and can't access anything. I WILL FIGURE THIS OUT!!!!

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