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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

What's New...

I joined an Etsy Team this week called the "BEST Team" (Boosting Etsy Shops Team). The members are required to do a feature on an assigned Etsy Shop. I was lucky to be assigned Omni Presents. I was struck immediately by the beautiful banner bursting with colorful stones! Omni Presents has a shop full of lovely handcrafted spiritual new age jewelry. I love her use of color and her whimsical pendants. I just know I would feel good wearing her jewelry! All of her jewelry seems to have a soothing effect on me. I plan to feature her haematite earrings in an upcoming collection on Sometimes Things Are Just Black & White. These are a few of my favorites.

Here is a peek at what's on my easel today. This one is big & long at 12 x 36 with 2" sides. I started working on her a few days ago and still have quite a bit to do as you can see. I am running out of time. Sunday we will be driving to Fremont to deliver all of my paintings to the gallery. I hope I can get her finished so I can take her along.

A Big Shout Out's & Thank you's go to MelissaMoloney, SammysGrammy , Santosleather , BrokenReflections , & FabricatedFamily , for featuring my art in their awesome Etsy Treasuries! Please click on their names to visit their Etsy Shops. And another Big Shout Out goes to The Domestic Goddess for doing such a wonderful feature on both of my shops! She has a great blog and I will be visiting often. Thank you all! I am truly blessed to receive such kindness.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Wishing It Would Rain Already

Click here to see my newest black & white collection "Anxiously Waiting"

Friday, September 24, 2010

Sneek Peek

Meet Miss Bubbles! A few more bubbles & tweeks here & there and she's ready to go to the Olive Hyde Gallery. She is full of eye popping color! I will be selling prints in my Etsy Shop.

"Miss Bubbles"

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A Real Hottie

If you are a regular visitor, family or friend, you know how much I love hot food & salsa! I love Chipotle, a chain of gourmet burrito shops. When I was working, in the corporate cubicle, if I would to able to get out for lunch, my likely destination was usually Chipotle. I can't finish an entire burrito bowl, which is what I normally order, that's because I'm too busy scarfing up the chips & salsa. Now that I work from home, almost a recluse, I hardly ever get to go. Recently my Hubby took me there and boy was it soooo good. This time I paid attention and deconstructed the salsa best I could. I decided I'd give it a try at home. OMgosh. I think I've got it or I've got it just as good or better! I literally made a bucket of it! I'm so addicted. I'll be putting it on everything now! I started by putting a bag of dried Arbol peppers into 3 cups of water. I boiled them for about 15 minutes. I put 20 El Mexicano Tomatillos in the blender with 3 cloves of garlic & 1 C - very loosely packed of Arbol peppers , 1/2 cup of tomatillo liquid and approx 1 tsp salt. I pureed until smooth. It's so easy & so delicious! I'm pretty jazzed that it tastes almost identical to Chipotle's hot salsa. Again, the simplest recipes seem to be the best! Now if only I could figure out Panda Express Gourmet Chinese Food's recipe for eggplant & tofu! ....

Friday, September 17, 2010

Self Portraits

I love finding these precious little self portrait surprises on my camera when I go to download my photos! He may be a budding Photographer, Blogger & Tweeter! hahaha

I have been doing a few lino cuts and crocheting. My back has been bothering me and I can't sit & do nothing so I picked up my crochet hook. I listed some crochet patterns in my empty ArtFire shop. I have sold a few on Etsy already. Several years ago I was selling these ponchos as fast as I could make them on Ebay. They really are cute if I say so myself, you can wear them almost all year round. I wish I had time to crochet more than I do. I don't have too many days left until the big opening in the bay area so I am stressing myself out a little by not getting any painting done, but at the same time, sitting quietly crocheting is very healing. Last night I stayed up until the wii hours watching Netflix movies & designing an easy hand warmer that can have several different looks. I am going to keep some and sell a few, and sell the pattern. I have searched & searched and can't find any patterns like this one so I think I can call it my own. All creative people take inspiration from something, and my own poncho pattern inspired these. Click HERE to see my poncho pattern & hat pattern. I should have the hand warmer pattern listed by this evening on ArtFire & Etsy.
A Big Shout Out & Thank You goes to SantosLeather for featuring my art in her Etsy Treasury!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Monday, September 13, 2010

A Broken Record...

...that was my brain. Stuck in a groove. Black & White. Black & White. Black & White. I had to do it. I had to run go & get linoleum. My husband doesn't even fight it anymore. hahaha I got home and couldn't wait to carve into it. I set up a tv tray, taped a paper bag to hang off the edge so that I could sweep off the waste lino right into the bag (it is a little messy). Then went & grabbed his leather garden glove for my left hand, just in case I slip with the tool. It wasn't long before I was smiling & patting myself on the back for my brilliance after what could have been a few bloody messes. Hubby kicked back in his leather recliner with his football games & remote control. Me, my lino, tools & tv tray. Happy as 2 clams at high tide.

Here are the small pieces I did. They are 3"x 3.75", a little bigger than an ACEO. I have enough lino to make 8 more small pieces but I might try a little bigger piece. I'm ordering more lino through Dick Blick today. It's a surprise to me how much I love doing this type of work. Lost In Lino! The world is whittled away.

Hubby made me watch this video someone sent him this morning. He warned me my stomach may flip flop. He was right. During the video, with my fingers almost covering my eyes, I screamed out "Where are their mothers?! Are they orphans?!" Yiiiiikes! I guess to do amazing things, no matter what it is, you have to take a chance & just run with it!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Finally Feeling Like Fall

Wednesday JJ & I had a blast being "Explorers" in the backyard. These are a few of the things we found out there. It's been a while since I posted his picture. Can you believe he just celebrated his 2nd birthday?! He's an "Amma's" boy and I love it! He copies everything I do, says everything I say (which may not be a good thing sometimes!) I treasure my Wednesdays with him. We are getting a lot of great big acorns this year. They are everywhere. Maybe that means lots of rain!? I sure am looking forward to the first rainy day.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Thinking in Black & White & Backwards!

I had so much fun yesterday! It's not a surprise that in addition to color color color that I also love black & white. If you haven't had a visit to my blog Sometimes Things Are Just Black & White, I hope you visit soon & follow! My friend & fellow Artist Carol Rogala came over for a visit. We had coffee, chatted about knitting, and then she gave me a private lesson in linocut prints! I am so hooked now! I laid in bed last night thinking in black & white, thinking of what I'd like to do, portraits using deep cuts, crabs crabs and more crabs, chickens, the scene on the bay bridge with San Fransico peeking through the wires just before you reach the city, ... I couldn't stop! When I'm finished painting for the Olive Hyde Gallery show next month I'm going to get some lino, a few tools, ink, brayer, scraper, & paper and really give it some study. I'm a little embarrassed to show my first pieces, I need lots of practice and have lots to learn! It will take practice getting my brain to think backwards too. haha She started me off with the black background, the angel, and my 2nd print, the crab, taking more off, working on the white areas. Carving was more satifying that I thought it could be. I was totally absorbed. I hope I wasn't making weird faces but I probably was! LOL Carol's pieces are so amazing. The one she was working on is very intricate and a powerful social comentary piece which she excels at. She made me a print of her bee piece "Leaving Town" that I love so much. I'm going to frame it & hang it with a little bee ACEO she gave me as well. Isn't she adorable!?! and check out my wonderful bee print! She's my print Sensei! Clicking on her name above will take you to her website to see more of her art. Carol's art was recently chosen for the California State Fair's Fine Art Exhibit and she is showing some of her pieces at the Marco Fuoco Gallery next month. I can't wait to see what she shows. Last week when she visited I gave her one of my hats, and in return for this random act of kindness I got a wonderful lesson and a fabulous print! As she drove off, with her printing goodies and a few of my "May Pops" (passion vine pods), I couldn't help but feel very blessed to have her in my life and can't wait to play again!

Big Shout Out's & Thank You's go to Graceful Moments for featuring my art in an Etsy Treasury & on her wonderful blog! Fabricated Family for featuring my beauty shop girl in her fun fractured fairytale Treasury, SammysGrammy for featuring my art on the Cast Team Blog! and to BewitchingDreams for including my art in her yummy sushi Treasury!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Sharing Family Secrets

I just made my Gramma's famous Salmon Croquettes, which are now my famous salmon croquettes and soon to be yours! hahaha. Today we are having these and a simple salad with poppy seed dressing. These croquettes are comfort food to me, a treat my Gramma made. They are so easy and economical. I'm sure that's why my Gramma loved them too. 28 croquettes from 1 can of salmon. My son who doesn't like salmon makes an exception for these and eats more of them than anyone else! We will be munching on them all day. The great thing about these little treats are that they are good hot or cold. Made a bit smaller they would be a fantastic finger food for a party.

The basic recipe is so easy. 1 C of self rising flour, 1 C cornmeal, 1 C of milk and 1 Can of Salmon (bones removed) & 1 egg. A couple of pinches of salt & pepper. Mix all together, form into patties & fry in small amount of oil until golden brown. That's it. Sometimes the simplest ingredients, the simplest recipes are the best. Ever notice that? I normally use 1 celery stalk & 1/2 of a large onion all chopped small or minced. This time I dialed them up with parsley, onion, 1/2 green bell pepper, & 5 hot carrot slices found in cans of jalapenos. The sky is the limit to making these your own by adding what you love or whatever you have in the frig. Another way I like them is with green onions & dipped in Japanese mayo (mayo, soy sauce & sugar), hoisin & sirracha, I've dipped them in tartar sauce, sweet mustard, salsa, ranch dressing... really I can't begin to tell you all the sauces we have made for these over the years. That's really part of the fun too. Of all the sauces Ketchup still reigns supreme for me! yep Plain ol' ketchup. That's the way I ate them when I was a kid and I still like them that way the best.

Big Shout Outs & Thank you's! go to CherieBosela, FootCandleArt, Silvia66, & MandaGirlDesigns for including my art in their Etsy Treasuries! Please click on their names to be wisked away to their shops!

Friday, September 3, 2010

And the Fun Begins...

...and the nail biting....and the breath holding...and the insurance!Congratulations Bubba! Yea!
Now go to the store for me :)