Friday, October 29, 2010

Dia de los Muertos Altar for my Parents

Many trips to the desert southwest have helped me embrace the quiet culture and deep spirituality that is reflected in the celebration of Dia de las Muertos. A respect and celebration for the lives of loved ones past. It is felt, that on this day, the spirit of the deceased comes back to visit. Graves are decorated with flowers and food and there's a solemn joy that fills those that believe. This being the Catholic equivalent of the Feast of All Souls.

My Father died this past April. It was at sunrise on Easter morning that he left this earth. My father and I had a kindred love of Easter. When my Mom was dying he and I took part in a special yearly event at our church. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus, a Catholic organization replicating Christs' Apostles. Each member of this council agreed to one hour that they would pray in church during the 24 hours leading up to Easter morning. I asked if I could go with him. I was 15 at the time and I asked him to pick an hour it would be most difficult to stay awake, to make the practice more resemble what the Apostles did. We picked a very late hour and walked over to our church which was in our neighborhood. The cool quiet woke us and the silent meditation infused us both with what we knew lay ahead. It was later that year that my Mother lost her battle with breast cancer.

That Easter,for that one hour, was ours.
Ours in quiet contemplation.
For my Dad to die on this same day, 35 years later seems part of a long cast puzzle slowly unfolded.

I recreated this Day of the Dead altar from one I made a few years ago for my Mother. This year, after a long earthy divide, they are reunited. Surrounding the altar are love letters my Father wrote to my Mom while he was in the Marine Corp. Each on Marine Corp stationary, embossed with the Marine logo and ink pen he wrote daily. The written word kept them together.

No phone or faxes. No facebook, text messages or e-mail. I trimmed the edges to resemble the papel picado flags that are used in these types of celebrations.
On the altar I placed a photo of them on their wedding day, with a wood cut cherub floating above them. This is a Valentine for them.
Memories of my Father and his life at the Sheriffs Department mark the years he and my Mom were 'apart'.

On the day my Father's life was celebrated at his small Georgia church, a pair of large birds hung in air currents and glided past the floor to ceiling church windows. In the months that have passed, I have been comforted by the vision of birds overhead.
His soul is at rest and he is with my Mother and the angels overhead.

Rest in Peace Mom & Dad

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Handmade Bee Box - TattooDreams

Bee Box measures 5" wide x 5" deep x7" high (12.7 cm x 12.7 cm x 17.78 cm ). The top opens by way of a yellow and black wooden knob and matching feet. Inside, the bottom is lined with black velvet. I always decorate the inside of the lids, and this one is no exception. Treasures, trinkets, jewelry or nothing at all can be placed in this box.
Artful empty or full!


More boxes can be found on my etsy site:

★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

FREE Domestic shipping!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Gingko Hand Made Rubber Stamped Box

One of my newest boxes-- It measures 7" wide x 7" deep x 8 1/4" high (17.78 cm x 17.78 cm x 20.95 cm ). Perfect for holding thoughts, dreams or anything in your life!
Ginkgo leaves are wonderfully sensuous and beautiful.
Adorned with two toned purple feet and fringe with a leaf shaped knob purple. Lined on the bottom with black velvet. Touches of warm gold accentuate the graceful knob.

My boxes are quietly making their way into esteemed collections around the world. Let yours be one of them!

More boxes can be found on my etsy site:



Monday, October 11, 2010

Gluten Free Pie Crust Recipe and Pumpkin Pie

Gluten Free Crust

1 stick unsalted butter
1 1/2 c oatmeal flour*
5 tbsp cold water
1 tsp vanilla

Cut butter into flour until a crumb like texture forms. Add water and vanilla and work dough with hands. Press into a pie pan. Mine was about 10" wide.
Bake at 400º for 12 minutes.

Some individuals with celiac disease cannot tolerate oats, use your best judgement.

Pie Filling

1 15 oz. can pumpkin
1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 425º. Mix all ingredients and pour into pie shell. Bake for 15 minutes at 425º.
Reduce oven temperature to 350º and bake for 35-40 minutes until center of pie comes out clean with toothpick test. Cool pie before cutting.
We add a scoop of good vanilla ice cream on top of warm pie!

Saturday, October 9, 2010


Imagine there's no heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today...

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace...

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood sisterhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world...

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one

Happy Birthday John!
You are alive in our souls!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Art doesn't match your sofa- It matches your soul!

This sign is part of a campaign I've begun to remind the public that art is not a thing- it's a way. It's a necessary component of our lives and our culture.
These hand stamped signs are done on cherry wood and tied with hemp cord. Can be hung anywhere, but best used indoors.

There's a page I've just begun on Facebook to share this message. Become part of the movement to take back the media with our message!

I'm not pushing overt consumerism- I'm asking people to realize the importance of art in their lives.
Art doesn't match your sofa- it matches your soul!

Each sign will differ slightly, but resemble this one. Less than 12" long. Sealed but best used indoors.
Hang them in your art fair booth, your cubicle - every arts organization needs at least one!
Spread the word. With velco added to the back, these signs can easily be displayed on Pro Panels or fiber walls.

Available at my etsy shop for 15.00
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Monday, October 4, 2010

New Ornaments on Display

My husband Jon built the most beautiful display racks for our new ornaments. Crafted from a downed branch in my brother-in-laws yard we brought back from Virginia, this looks great. Copper tacks securely hold the waxed linen thread over each limb.
These new ornaments will go to our next shows, arrive at the Orchard Gallery in Fort Wayne and be posted to in time for the holidays.