Thursday, January 29, 2009 judith brinck

judy and i became friends awhile back...we were putting our heads together on a project that i was working on to promote artists...i was really taken with her beautiful, truly beautiful...but judy herself is one of those people that you want in your circle of friends, a next door neighbor that you can drop in to see or at least to have as a long distance buddy...i do love her so.... you will find judy busy painting her whimsical designs in her home in rhode island...(and does look cold!)...but you can visit her site that i have linked for you to see more of her designs or to order...

i wanted to share judy's work with you...i know you all will love her craft, her creations and knowing a bit about her history... judy grew up in a family of artists so she was bound to become one herself...after years of teaching our children the time came for her to discover her craft and perfect it....drawing, studying, painting and finally framing, judy's work is like candy to the eye...

using time honored traditions: marbleizing, hand-graining, gilding, milk paint, hand-cut stenciling, vinegar painting, tromp-loeil, and free- hand style ..... she introduces time now ... to time past.

fraktur, from the german word, “broken”, a writing style practiced primarily by schoolmasters and ministers in pennsylvania - german communities of the 18th-19th centuries have become a focus of judy's painting....and added, the whimsy of judy herself...

this year judy was chosen nationally as one of the best period painters for the directory of traditional american crafts by early american life magazine for demonstrating mastery of the art form as well as using traditional tools and methods to produce the art. whenever you see the sign above, you will know that this artist has been chosen by masters in the to say you are seeing future museum pieces...

judith brinck, folk art...

to see more of judy and her work, (which are each original and one of a kind) just click the link. above...

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

look what i found...sweet harvest farms...

sweet harvest farms

it is fun to sit down and blog about other artists and their crafts...for as we all know, we just love all of these wonderful things that are unique and handmade...long ago there was a wonderful shop in town that i would run over to when i ran out of soap...they sold handmade soap by the many scents, such wonderful soaps to bring home...well they are long gone and i have had to settle for regular old soap for sometime now...

i wanted to share this artist with you...for not only are her products wonderful for the fragrance and natural product...but they are also wonderful for all of you that struggle with sensitive whether it's the winters that you are struggling with, sensitive skin, or just plain love natural handmade you have a place to order on-line from... sweet harvest farms...

sweet harvest farms has taken an old basic soap recipe and added natural, soothing and luxurious ingredients to create a unique soap. this wonderful early fashioned soap not only leaves you squeaky clean but also leaves you with soft, supple and moisturized skin. the cold processed method retains 100% of the natural glycerin which is essential to hydrate your skin. commercial brands often siphon off the glycerin to sell as a by-product, in doing so their soap can leave you feeling dry and itchy.

these are not “glycerin soaps” (which is a melt and pour product). these are nurturing, medicinal and soothing soaps from her own recipe-in her own kitchen. natural and hydrating, glycerin does not have to be added as it is already there through the process of this true soap-making technique.

there are very few true soap makers left that stay true to the old fashion method of soap making used literally thousands of years ago. Excavations of ancient Babylon uncovered cylinders with inscriptions for making soap around 2800 B.C.E. Later records from ancient Egypt (c. 1500 B.C.E.) describe how animal and vegetable oils were combined with alkaline salts to make soap.

natural colorants are used in these soaps to bring out the beauty of each bar and organic and natural herbs, that are proven medicinal, are added to some of the recipes. refined shea butter, olive oil, jojoba oil, flax seed oil, palm oil and coconut oil are just a few of the rich oils used to create this luxurious line of soap.

some refer to these soaps as goat’s milk soaps....for goat's milk contains vitamins A, B6, B12 and E and is added because it is a natural emollient that helps soothe and moisturize the skin. It is the combination of all ingredients that make these luxurious bars highly sought after.

sweet harvest farms even have a natural line of soaps to help your little dogs...

the decadent dog

sapponified oils of, shea butter, coconut oil, palm oil, flax seed oil, lavender basil oil, rosemary mint, eucalyptus mint, dried sweet annie. this soap can actually be used by you and i... it is made with her basic recipe with a few twists...the skin safe scented oils used are known to repel fleas, ticks and pesky little bugs that can irritate your dog’s skin. dried sweet annie was added because of its anti-biotical and antibacterial properties, while crushed oatmeal added is to calm and soothe. use in between grooming. (not for cats...or near cats)

here is cythia's link to her site where you can read about all of her bath care products and see other goodies that you can order directly from can read about her background and see why her products are so desirable...

Sunday, January 25, 2009

where to find art?

an on-line gallery of american artists

caramia visick

whether you are searching for jewelry, art or sit angels will make you feel welcomed, cared for and simply adored...this is THE on-line shopping spree for everyone - whether you are a collector or soon to be collector of american art will soon find that you can't resist the artists, their work and jen herself...

nicole bowen

barbara stawser

i've blogged before about 'earth angels', for jen o'connor, leader of all angels has created a very unique company. over the years she has added to her band of artistic angels and will always continue to search for more...for she has built a wonderful company with the crafts from artists across america and is truly a delight to work with... i wanted to showcase a group of the angels for you and some of their pieces over the next few weeks for jen has nearly 50 angels to share with you...(but you can always peek ahead and go straight to her site to view more art and artists...)

kitty babendreier
(always room for a piece from kitty...)

and as the world changes once again from what we once new.... american artists are struggling to stay put for we have lost so many venues that once shared our work with you - magazines, catalogs and storefronts have all taken a toll and for the american artist a time has come for all of us to decide if we will be able to continue our art or to find another position for ourselves... so don't stop collecting american craft for you are supporting an artist and their family...

jody battaglia

debrina pratt

you have probably seen earth angels beautiful adds in some of your favorite magazines, as well as read articles featuring many of her artists...for many angels are 'famous', and many more will become 'famous' in their if you are wanting to add some pieces to your home and you don't have that special shop in town...or if you are snowed can always browse the earth angels site and collect to your hearts content...

ashley carter

cheryl kuhn

pat castka

julie arkell

stacey bear

lori ann corelis

dara dimagno

and yes, i am an angel too...

Saturday, January 24, 2009

seen around the world...

my wonderful niece sent me these seems as if the world paused...

satellite view of the mall...








south korea

our soldiers in afghanistan


new york city

going home...

i loved this shot...he looks at peace...

letter from the 43rd president
to the 44th president...

Friday, January 23, 2009

horse lovers...

artist and friend, sande elkins, made this beautiful presentation of her photography combined with the music of nori bucci. when the music stops...listen closely for the sound of the wild and free...

you can view sande's work in many places now - so i'm showing the link to her blog, (below), where all the sites are listed to the right, that you can check out... be sure to click on the link "an illuminated horse, a book by sande elkins", for i had wanted to post it weeks ago to share with you, but couldn't figure out how to do's really beautiful...

so just click on the link and have fun: sande elkins, gray horse designs

here is nori bucci's link too, for some beautiful music: nori bucci

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

more snow...

today as i sit at my computer, eli runs down the stairs announcing in a gleeful voice, 'i haven't been to school in 5 days!", my response....mmmmmm. yes. it's taking it's toll...and it's only january.

looks like we are snowed in for sometime least the rest of the week....what is really getting to me is my dog, fleetwood....for she thinks that she needs to constantly be giving off a 'snow' warning bark....non- stop...over and over again, relentless at her job to inform and out, in and out...tracking in snow to turn to puddles in the kitchen...

my task today is to get my nephew his flannel sheets that his mom sent up from florida...he's freezing, he is a florida boy...and you can imagine how i love those calls from my sister, 'can you run those over to him' i know it sounds like such a simple request, but come on...

i will spend much time getting the car ready, scraping ice and brushing off the snow, dressed in so many layers that i will have a hard time fitting into my car without hitting the steering wheel over and over again, and of course tracking in the snow that always seems to land right on my seat...trying to navigate the snow and ice from my place to his, which is about 1/4 - 1/2 mile away...

this is his first winter here, no 4x4 and on crutches...could it get worse for him? but i'm telling you, if he weren't 'family', well i'd have to say your on your own kiddo - something like 'why don't you come over here with kids and dogs and try to get something done..., hey why don't you just do that for a little while and see if you haven't lost your mind"!!!, but he is my nephew, i love him, and i don't want him to freeze, i will get him warmed up.......checked in with my client, outside of chicago, the one i refer to as 'my twin', and yes, she has had it too...for she hates the snow for all reasons, all the exceptions...

i received email today from my florida family...they are suffering mightily...for it is 50. they are bundled up and the threat of a freeze is sending them to pile on the hopes his golf game is i wish it were 50 here - we would be outside throwing the football...digging in the garden and probably cooking dinner out on the would indeed be heaven...

my sister sent me this email this morning...fitting...i did have to do some editing though to make it much more tame....

Diary of a Demented Snow Shoveller

December 8, 6:00 PM
It started to snow. The first snow of the season and the wife and I took our cocktails and sat for hours by the window watching the huge soft flakes drift down from heaven. It looked like a Grandma Moses print. So romantic we felt like newlyweds again. I love snow!

December 9
We woke to a beautiful blanket of crystal white snow covering every inch of the landscape. What a fantastic sight! Can there be a more lovely place in the whole world? Moving here was the best idea I've ever had! Shovelled for the first time in years and felt like a boy again. I did both our driveway and the sidewalks. This afternoon the snow plough came along and covered up the sidewalks and closed in the driveway, so I got to shovel again. What a perfect life!

December 12
The sun has melted all our lovely snow. Such a disappointment! My neighbour tells me not to worry-we'll definitely have a white Christmas. No snow on Christmas would be awful! Bob says we'll have so much snow by the end of winter, that I'll never want to see snow again. I don't think that's possible. Bob is such a nice man, I'm glad he's our neighbour.

December 14
Snow, lovely snow! 8 inches last night. The temperature dropped to -20. The cold makes everything sparkle so. The wind took my breath away, but I warmed up by shovelling the driveway and sidewalks. This is the life! The snow plough came back this afternoon and buried everything again. I didn't realize I would have to do quite this much shovelling, but I'll certainly get back in shape this way. I wish I wouldn't huff and puff so.

December 15
20 inches forecast. Sold my van and bought a 4x4Blazer. Bought snow tires for the wife's car and 2 extra shovels. Stocked the freezer. The wife wants a wood stove in case the electricity goes out. I think that's silly. We aren't in Alaska , after all.

December 16
Ice storm this morning. Fell on the ice in the drive way putting down salt. Hurt like hell. The wife laughed for an hour, which I think was very cruel.

December 17
Still way below freezing. Roads are too icy to go anywhere. Electricity was off for 5 hours. I had to pile the blankets on to stay warm. Nothing to do but stare at the wife and try not to irritate her. Guess I should've bought a wood stove, but won't admit it to her. I hate it when she's right. I can't believe I'm freezing to death in my own living room.

December 20
Electricity is back on, but had another 14 inches of the damn stuff last night. More shovelling! Took all day. The damn snow plough came by twice. Tried to find a neighbour kid to shovel, but they said they're too busy playing hockey. I think they're lying. Called the only hardware store around to see about buying a snow blower and they're out. Might have another shipment in March. I think they're lying. Bob says I have to shovel or the city will have it done and bill me. I think he's lying.

December 22
Bob was right about a white Christmas because 13 more inches of the white ---- fell today, and it's so cold, it probably won't melt till August. Took me 45 minutes to get all dressed up to go out to shovel and then I had to go to the bathroom. By the time I got undressed, and dressed again. I was too tired to shovel. Tried to hire Bob who has a plow on his truck for the rest of the winter, but he says he's too busy. I think he is lying.

December 23
Only 2 inches of snow today. And it warmed up to 0.The wife wanted me to decorate the front of the house this morning. What is she, nuts?!! Why didn't she tell me to do that a month ago? She says she did but I think she's lying.

December 24
6 inches - Snow packed so hard by snow plough, I broke the shovel. Thought I was having a heart attack. If I ever catch the ---- who drives that snow plow, I'll drag him through the snow and beat him to death with my broken shovel. I know he hides around the corner and waits for me to finish shovelling and then he comes down the street at a 100 miles an hour and throws snow all over where I've just been! Tonight the wife wanted me to sing Christmas carols with her and open our presents, but I was too busy watching for the damn snow plough.

December 25
Merry Christmas! 20 more inches of the damn slop tonight - Snowed in - The idea of shoveling makes my blood boil. I hate the snow! Then the snowplow driver came by asking for a donation and I hit him over the head with my shovel. The wife says I have a bad attitude. I think she's a idiot. If I have to watch 'It's A Wonderful Life' one more time, I'm going to stuff her into the microwave.

December 26
Still snowed in.. Why the hell did I ever move here? It was all HER idea. She's really getting on my nerves.

December 27
Temperature dropped to -30 and the pipes froze; plumber came after 14 hours of waiting for him, he only charged me $1,400 to replace all my pipes.

December 28
Warmed up to above -20. Still snowed in. She's driving me crazy!!!

December 29
10 more inches. Bob says I have to shovel the roof or it could cave in. That's the silliest thing I ever heard. How dumb does he think I am?

December 30
Roof caved in. I beat up the snow plow driver, and now he is suing me for a million dollars. The wife went home to her mother. Nine more inches predicted.

December 31
I set fire to what's left of the house. No more shoveling.

January 8
Feel so good. I just love those little white pills they keep giving me. Why am I tied to the bed?

yep....this is normally the feeling i have by mid february, ready to head down to florida and warm my bones on spring break...easter is mid april this year so spring break will be late, feel i won't make it that long....have cabin fever, have been in for a week now...down with that dreaded chest cold and then shut in from the snow...yes, things could be worse, but let me whine a little....maybe i will move the furniture around today...that is always fun...ahhh probably not, seems like a chore...and if i hear 'i'm bored' one more time....

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

president barrack obama...

today we will swear into office our 44th president, barack obama...i look forward to hearing his words, for i do believe his voice will go down in history, his words repeated by our future presidents, for he has a natural ability to stir the hearts in others and to cause change...

i do recall martin luther king's 'i have a dream speech', but i was quite a little girl at the an adult i am not surprised that the speech is referred to by so many, that the dream is still in the process...for i was only 4 when i heard it...when martin luther king, jr., was killed 5 years later i was stricken with sadness, moved to cry - for even at 9 i new that a great man was taken from us, a hero in my 9 year old eyes...

today our new president is being celebrated around the world - for our country is 'practicing what they preach', the american dream. this dream has brought millions to our country in search of a new and better life...inspiring hope that anything is possible...i am proud to show that to the world. when 'my people' came to this country, you could find signs in shop keepers windows, irish need not apply. but prejudice is taught to the children and is carefully woven like a fine piece of linen into their minds - but linen can eventually give, break and tear...and as a result, love and freedom.