Thursday, June 29, 2017


In memory of Oscar 2003-2017

My longtime best friend and companion..

Oscar came into my life shortly after Simon..Late summer of 2003...At the beginning of my empty nest years..

Simon and I quickly fell in love with this sweet natured cuddly weenie..Oscar and Simon became the best of buddies, two  peas in one pod..

My sweet pair of doggies enjoyed many years of secret puppy parties those days when I was away from home....

Oscar quickly acted as Simon's protector whenever the situation called for it...He had Simon's back each and every time Simon chased a critter across the backyard..

These doggies and I have been through some interesting times together.. Evacuations from deadly hurricanes...Taking in homeless friends.. My retirement from work..

Up until the very end of his life, Oscar enjoyed his favorite moments.....His meals... Playing with/ cuddling Simon...Patio time/couch time cuddling with me..Every night, at bedtime, Oscar pranced joyfully to our bedroom, with Simon and I in tow..

As much as it hurts losing this precious fur baby, I am honored and grateful that I was gifted 14 wonderful years (5,110 days) to love and care for him..His loyalty and unconditional love added an extra layer of joy to my life and made the difficult times in my life more bearable..

I will forever miss Oscar..So will Simon..Until we meet again in Heaven...

Oscar on Christmas Day 7 years ago..This ball remained his favorite for the rest of his life

Oscar was very vocal, he was good at letting us know what was going on inside and outside the house...
One of Oscar's favorite moments..He loved his meals and an occasional yummy treat...
Bedtime with me and Simon
Oscar's favorite place at the foot of my bed wrapped in my pajamas..He would burrow and nap in the comfort of these pajamas during the day whenever he was sleepy..This happened most often when I was away or very busy around the house.
Anticipating a yummy treat
These sweet babies often nuzzled each other before drifting off to sleep

Oscar as backup when Simon does squirrel chasing

Simon welcomes Oscar into his life with open arms..This picture was shot by me during Oscar's first week with us.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017


My artist friend Michele Patrick, teaches mosaic classes several times a year...A few weeks ago I signed up for her Broken China Mosaic Class...

Our class was held on Friday May 26th, preceding the Memorial Day Weekend.. Our class was unusually small..Three students, and our instructor Michele.

We began the class by spray painting the serving trays we were about to mosaic...While our trays were drying we learned about the glues and paints commonly used to make mosaic art pieces..

We chose our china dishes to be broken..To mosaic these serving trays, we each needed 3 or 4 small china plates...We found it best to break each dish separately.....To break the china  we;

1. put one dish in a 1 gallon plastic bag
2. zip locked  the plastic bag with the dish inside
3. placed the bag/dish on a firm surface
4. hit the bag/dish with a hammer until we had the dish broken to our satisfaction..
5.To shape our broken china, there were round glass cutters available..Which I made use of..I learned the hard way though, that it is essential to have eye protection on at all times while cutting glass..

By the time we had broken our dishes, our spray painted wooden trays were dry...

We went to work gluing our broken china pieces to our wooden serving trays...This was a time consuming process, similar to piecing a jigsaw puzzle together..Our class was a 4 hour class..The gluing portion of our work took anywhere from 2-3 hours..

We were provided a grout kit in our choice of grout color..With explicit instructions..To take home with our trays so that we could grout them in our spare time. Being able to grout these trays at our leisure, at home, was what made this class affordable in price and time..

For those students who couldn't/wouldn't grout their trays at home, Michele offered to do the grouting for them..It was up to these students to return to Michele's house later in the week to pick up their grouted trays....

Our trays with the broken china glued on....

My serving tray with the broken china in place...

This student, Beth, loves to shop for antiques and unique found objects...She operates a vendor booth in a Galveston antique/ resale shop...

 Another student created mosaic trays with us..The design she came up with was beautiful..I don't have a snapshot of it, but I loved the bold colors / simple design of her piece..This student, Araceli, is deeply into yoga and works as a psychiatrist in Clear Lake Texas.

My mosaic tray grouted and ready for the curing process.....

After this grouted area is fully cured, I may spray paint a light coat of varnish to the entire tray :-)

Thursday, May 25, 2017

A blossoming addiction to love and kindness

I have met some wonderful pen pals via the LYA Postcard Swap :-)

Some of these pals have turned me on to other groups who exchange postcards and hand made greeting cards..

One such group is Love Notes

Another group is Global HE(ART) SWAP

So I've been pleasantly busy making greeting cards in addition to my postcards :-)

These are a few examples....

Some postcards I sent out

My recipients know they will get mail from people in our group within a certain time window, but they do not know ahead of time who they are swapping with..

I am grateful to have several communities of pen pals to interact with in addition to my friends and family!

June 20, 2017:

It has been almost a month since I mailed the above cards to their recipients.. I made many more greeting cards since than and have grown more creative in my stamping techniques..

So many beautiful surprises have landed in my mailbox in return :-)

Maintaining connections, whether they be in person, online or via snail mail is a good way to be kind to oneself..

The vintage camera is from Chandra Lynn in Alabama, the Volkswagen Van is from Jackie Wright in England

From Connie Fogle in SC

From Michelle Kocher in Wisconsin
Heart from Cheri Paxton and pigs from Fran Dunn
The sunshine is from Lisa Hamilton in Florida, and the coffee break is from Debra Davidson in Virginia Beach
From Susi Sandlier in Germany
Flowers from Chandra Lynn, First Aid Kit from Eileen Vivell in Germany and Rose from Marriana Dougherty in Arizona
From Christina Brooks in Arizona
Be kind card from Susan in SanFrancisco..The flowers from Fran Bunn
From Trang Kang in Dallas...Her sweet son's work is also included in this wonderful kindness bundle :-)

A lovely image of a wave crashing against the rocks from Christina Brooks

From Trang Kang in Dallas.The rose is drawn with one continuous line :-)


Another group I recently joined was  The Gathering Place ......We are assigned partners to write to..We share with this partner by sending him or her  a written story about something memorable that happened in our lives..

This was one of the stories that I shared...

This summer will be an interesting season of kindness and love.....

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Happy Mother's Day!

A Mother has her heart forever with her children no matter how old they grow! To all mothers, Have a Happy Mother's Day ! 

Mother's Day this year was the day that my granddaughter Caroline got christened ..A beautiful event with an awesome celebration afterwards..It was fun catching up with family members I hadn't seen in months!

My granddaughter Caroline and I enjoying some snuggles :-)

I made this bracelet for Caroline..On the day of her christening, I gifted it to her parents (Ben and Melissa)  as a momento.. I hope that they will hand it down to Caroline someday..

Monday, May 8, 2017

Monday, May 1, 2017


"Growth is the only evidence of new life.."
~ John Henry Newman ~

I have been following this group of Mallards from the time I met them a month ago..I enjoy watching the changes these ducklings undergo as they grow up..I can't wait until they begin their flying lessons..

Click on link to read an article about Mallard ducks :-)

Mallard Ducks

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Happy Easter !

Easter spells out beauty,
the rare beauty of new life..

~S.D. Gordon ~

Muscavy duck with a duckling

I went to Burke Crenshaw Park three times on different days to visit with this sweet family..These creatures let me sit very close amongst them on all of my visits..The mom and her ducklings took naps at my feet while I enjoyed some fresh air and nature scenery from my park bench..

These ducklings were protected by the adult ducks AND geese :-)

Of course I was quiet and didn't make any sudden movements...

On my first visit, this mom and her babies (seen in video ) were startled away by the cackling of a large bird flying overhead...

I am grateful to wake up to another sunrise....Each new day has its promise of opportunities  to make positive improvements in my life and in how I see things..

I wish each and every one of you an awesome Easter Weekend :-)

Friday, April 14, 2017

Liberate Your Art Postcard Swap 2017

This year is my third year to participate in the LYA postcard swap hosted by Kat Sloma and her helpers...Check out Kat's blog here..Kateyestudio :-)

I fell in love with this postcard swap from the time I found out about it..The LYA main swap takes place over several weeks, starting mid March..Once the main swap is over, there are side swaps for those who are interested.. Last year I received pretty postcard surprises from side swappers through mid summer :-)

Such a wonderful way to exchange art and reunite with old friends / meet new ones..I enjoy seeing how other people express and share their talents...

These are my postcards liberated for the main swap :-)

These are the postcards that I received from the main swap :-)

My first postcard was received from Ma Forgette in France..

Luscious berries captured during a hike...Nice to meet a fellow hiker/nature lover...

My second postcard received from Joan Hemsworth..Postcard features "Scary Cat "  an art piece made by Joan..Body and tail are made from a gourd, the face made of "quick wood"  

Another safe landing, postcard #3..
Art named " Field of Dreams" Quote on back of postcard reads " Everything you can imagine is real." Thank you Susan Watson from Frederick Maryland :-) ~ IG @paperpenbird ~ ~ Twitter @eatcherveggies ~

My fourth postcard to arrive, this beauty from Kate TerHaar..The scenery brings back my childhood memories of winters in Chicago :-) 
This afternoon, in Texas, it is a blazing hot/humid 87 degrees outside!
Instagram - kateterhaar
Quote on the back of postcard reads "Do the things that make your heart sing!" 
Thank you Kate!

My 5th postcard ....I decided to go to my favorite nature spot and find a way display this beautiful postcard from there..I was hoping for birds, lots of them for my background! I couldn't find any birds who wanted to pose for me, but the setting sun was magnificent!
This postcard is from Annie in California...It is rubber stamp and ink art..She writes that birds are one of her favorite artistic subjects..This is her first year to participate in LYA 

A postcard from David Wolanski, came just in time for spring...David sends me postcards at various times throughout the year..This  work is titled "Windsor Ruins"...I love David's photography work..These images are mostly limited edition, shot with a toy film camera...See more of David's art here :-)

Last but not least, Kat's postcard...It is always a nice surprise :-) Her postcard is mailed to us after ALL  five of our main swap postcards are well on their way to various mailboxes across the country / around the world..

This year I decided to  feature Kat's beautiful postcard next to the items I use for a favorite hobby of mine..I like to spin yarn with a drop spindle..After I spin my yarn, I weave, knit or crochet various projects with it :-)

This beautiful video, compiled by Kat, features many of the postcards liberated by us :-) Please view in full screen!


876 pieces of art were sent around the world
146 people took part, and those people came from ...
12 different countries

My side swaps received so  far :-)

Please check back regularly.. I will share info and pics of all of my side swaps here.. LYA side swaps will often take place throughout the spring / early part of the summer!


I received my first side swap from Michele Matucheski of ...She lives in Oshkosh WI..
The quote on the back of her lovely and colorful postcard reads "To practice any art, no matter how well or badly is a way to make your soul grow...So DO it!" ~Kurt Vonnegut ~

The second side swap I received is from Sharon (Snap) Lane, who is from Houston Texas...Her website is Twistylane .  Sharon's  beautiful postcard features a watercolor that she painted, titled "Spring Fling"...On the back reads a quote, " Bloom where you are planted". This postcard landed in my mailbox along with with these delicious extras pictured!

My third postcard ( side swap ) to land in my mailbox is from Sheila Delgado... She lives in Arizona :-) Her website is . I love her encouraging message as well as the gorgeous pastels and abstract design !


 My fourth side swap is from Kate Lehman in Woodridge Illinois... See more of her work here :-)
Beautiful postcard! I decided to photograph it with my vintage cast iron piggy, because the pattern / texture of the angel's wings are similar..


The day after Easter,  I received an awesome surprise of 8 side swap postcards in the mail :-)

I took this recent batch of 8 safe landings with me to coffee..I wanted to show them to my besties :-)

This card is a beautiful original made by Trang Kang..She lives in Sachse Tx, near Dallas..The beautiful note seen below was written on the back :-)  Trang's work was sent to me in her envelope art, as seen in the coffee photo.. Postcard seen in the same picture as Trang's work is my "Morning Glory" photo :-) Thank you Trang...I love  beautiful handmade original art :-)


These three fabulous postcards are  -

Top Center: "Conceive, Believe, Achieve" by Sherry Harmes of Amook Island Creations..Sherry is  a retired occupational therapist who lives in Larson Bay Alaska, where it is 39 degrees..Good to swap with you again Sherry!!

Left is from Patsy Lawrence..She lives in Murfreesboro TN..Her art depicted on this postcard is an acrylic and pastel she painted on a page in an altered photography book..Good to swap with you again Patsy!!

Right is from Vienna Austria...Andrea Farthofer. Andrea wrote that she had been doing postcard - mail art exchanges for 6 years..

Thank you so much my friends, these postcards add color to my day :-)


Postcard on the left is from Lynn Foerster who lives in Pennsylvania..

Postcard on the right is from Patricia Mark in Portland Oregon..Her website is ...."To be an artist is to believe in life " ~ Henry Moore ~ reads the quote on the back....Thank you ladies for your beautiful cards :-)


The postcard  seen on the left is from Linda Ursin..She lives in Norway.. Her website is at

The right postcard is from Christine Brooks..She is lives in Arizona..She writes about the legend of "Thistles" that are pictured on the front of her postcard..Thistles are the national flower of Scotland..These postcards are beautiful with many happy colors..Thank you ladies :-))


This beautiful postcard made its way to me from France..On the front is Louise Mamet's beautiful photography..On the back Louise tells me a little about these buildings and the region she lives in..

I love the texture of the brick and rooftops :-)

Louise Mamet's blog is here

I was crocheting flowers for a project when an idea popped into my head, to give Louise's buildings a garden!


The beautiful eye popping postcard on the left is from Terry Owenby..We did a side swap last year too!
Terry is from Portland Oregon...She resurrected one of her old paintings done in a Jesse Reno class by photographing it and cropping it digitally to make small scale art for postcards...The lovely postcard on the right is from Suzette Rothlisberger of Grantsville Utah...You can find her at Sarah's Garden
Her postcard depicts a very picturesque serene scene that brings back memories of a field I used to play in when I was a child 


I received some more snail mail lovelies this month <3 from LYA side swaps :-)
Top left is from Christine Brooks ..I love spring snowstorms like this one :-)
"Dreamer" is the postcard top right..From Janice Darby . I love all of the layers of color and texture! On the back it reads " Never let it be said that to dream is a waste of one's time, for DREAMS are our realities in waiting..In dreams we plant the seeds of our future" Janice is from Santa Maria California :-)
Botton left postcard is from Teena Lurlene .. Printed from an original drawing that she made ..Teena is from Richmond Virginia.. The back of her postcard reads,
"Never doubt that a group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world..It is the only thing that ever has" ~Margaret Mead~
The bottom right postcard is from Chandra Lynn Her postcard features an edited version of an original coneflower image that she shot..
The back of her postcard reads " We do not escape into philosophy, psychology and art~We go there to restore our shattered selves into whole ones." --Anais Win


This beautiful postcard is from Natasha Papousek..She lives in Santa Ana California...I love these colorful luminescent poppies with the added surprise of a nice plump bee :-) Thank you Natasha, and happy Spring to you too 


This wonderful postcard landed in my mailbox today! From Barbara Evans..I love the bold colors and simple beauty of the petals..Barbara lives in South England, in Salisbury..Thank you for brightening my day 

You can find more of her work here ...



Two more gems in the mail :-) The postcard on the right is from Kelly Warren, Shelter photographer/artist from Tallahassee Florida, USA...Kelly's awesome work is eye opening, her passion is to raise awareness about the plight of shelter pets..I wish I could hug these doggies in person, scoop them up and find/give them good homes immediately!
The postcard on the left is from Val van der Poel. Val is an artist who works in watercolor, ink, charcoal, pencil and mixed media..Her work is gorgeous!

Val can be found here

Kelly can be found here

Three more beautiful postcards landed in my mailbox💌

The postcard on the top is from Kat Van Rooyen..Kat is a certified Zentangle instructor who lives in Tazwell VA..Her art is amazing!

The gorgeous postcard on the left is from Christine Brooks..I love the gentle pastels and the beautiful scenery of this watercolor..Christine lives in Flagstaff AZ..

The pretty postcard on the right is from Deanie Houghaling, who lives in Phoenix AZ.On the back of her postcard reads, "Without music, life would be a waste." ~Frederick Nietzsche ~

Today I received two more postcards in the mail (5-23-17) 
Sea Sean who lives in Canada..Sea can be found at Paint a Masterpiece.
and Christine Brooks a photographer who lives in Arizona..

Thank you ladies for brightening my day :-))