I have always loved the quoted attributed to John Lennon as well as to numerous others before him that life is what happens when you are busy making other plans. The quote feels very accurate in my more recent experiences.

I have loved the beach from the earliest age.

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How fortunate I am that I was able to relocate close to the ocean.beach.jpg

I didn’t realize how often storms could potentially interrupt daily life.

I have continued in recent time to be busy with kitchen remodel plans.

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In addition to some art quilt projects, I have also been pursing learning the basics of 3D modeling software. (Though now I am questioning both why I am working with the most expensive and more technical program, when there are others less expensive and potentially easier to learn.  Plus I am wondering if that is the best use of my time when I have so many other ideas and projects in the works. I really need to re-evaluate all my activities to make sure I have time for the ones that mean the most to me.)

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All these wonderful pursuits were interrupted with the need to prepare for a hurricane. (Hurricane Irma that is.) Everyone has a hurricane story.  Everyone loves to tell their story.  Everyone wants to know how their story is the same or different from everyone else’s story.  All these days later we are still telling them. There is no escape for you.  You get to hear it too.

So all the outside furniture was brought inside. Family photos went into plastic bins placed up high.  Important documents were gathered.  Gas was put into the cars. Cash was obtained.inside.jpg

Shutters went up all around the house.

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Mandatory evacuations were ordered. But we discovered where we evacuated to put us more inline with the oncoming storm.

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I quickly learned why they say to fill up your car with gas.  On the way out of town, we travelled on back roads.  At one point, as we neared an intersecting turnpike exit, the traffic backed up badly.  All the cars lined up exiting the turnpike were trying to get to one little country gas station we had to pass by. I wonder how long it was before it ran out of gas.

We quickly lost power and then phone service at the place we evacuated to, so were unable to know exactly where we were in the storm and where it went after it passed. Because the electric went out the pump couldn’t work. Now I know why they say to fill the tub with water when a hurricane is coming.  We had to use bathwater to force the toilets to flush.

The road out of the rural property we were on was blocked off by a fallen tree and electrical wires so we were really blocked off from the world for a while.

When we got home … I was pretty relieved that the structural damages were minor and that the plants that weren’t snapped off at the base would recover nicely. (The photo of the back wall shows a fallen 20 ft. high white Bird of Paradise.  It’s twin simply disappeared last year in Hurricane Matthew.) We are still waiting on repair crews.

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I was happy the plumbing worked.  And in the miserable heat, cold showers seemed like a real luxury.

Now I know why they tell you to stock up on ice.  Without power we had to throw out every last thing in the refrigerator.  Because no ice could be found anywhere, we could not keep anything cold in the house; not milk for cereal, not a soda, not water. We couldn’t find ice and so we had to go out looking for food for every meal.  I also know now why you stock up on cash.  Without electricity you sometimes have to have cash to pay for gas and for food.  Many/most of the local businesses were without power.

Two of the local restaurants without power opened up with very limited menus. One opened for the morning and the other for the afternoon.  Staff worked in the dark, cooking on a gas stove and wearing lights on head bands so that they could see what they were cooking.  I admired their spirits so much and I never tasted better scrambled eggs and grilled toast!

I wish I could say I showed that same hardy pioneering spirit.  I am unhappy to report that was not the case.  I melted in the heat.  I turned red and grumpy and fatigued. I was very aware that we were very fortunate with minor damages and everyone safe.  I realized that many others had much more difficult things to deal with.  But that knowledge still did not make me a happy camper in the drenching heat. There were two times (other than the cold showers) I could get some comfort.  At night, in the backyard you could feel some cool breezes coming off the ocean.  The unfortunate thing was that the only generator in the neighborhood was next door just across our backyard fence.  So to get relief from the heat you had to have loud sounds blasted at you.  It was too bad since otherwise night time was amazing.  There were no lights on our street and being on a barrier island the stars were incredibly clear; very zen if only you could get past the loud noise. The other time I  could get relief was in the car. The car was the only way to charge my cell phone, so to keep in touch with the world, with news, to tell others we were ok, I had to use the car which …uh …had…air conditioning.  So any excuse, let’s find lunch, let’s look for ice, let’s cool off the dog, let’s find a laundromat…anything to turn on the AC. So the following photos were taken driving around, cooling off and charging my cell phone.

These signs are typical of the numerous signs which were either knocked down or had the centers blown out.

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Quite a few gas stations had damages.

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At first most of the traffic signals were out.  It was a bit unsettling going through intersections until temporary four way stop signs were placed in busier intersections.

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It was a very happy thing to see traffic lights and electrical lines being worked on.

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Before we got power back on, I was due to fly to San Antonio to take an Eco Printing class with Jane Dunnewold.  Tell me, would you stay at home without electricity or would you fly to an air conditioned studio with a wonderful teacher and creative classmates?  Yep.  I thought so.  We made many wonderful samples of eco printing. These two are simply what I had on my phone. Perhaps another time I will go through and find examples of different techniques and materials.

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More than enough for one telling.  Night!

 

©2017

 

 

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My aging little buddy ended up with a spinal injury. I was afraid he wasn’t going to make it.

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But with the help of accupuncture, meds and rest, he has recovered in a way I did not think possible.

 

While staying at home with my little buddy recuperating, I had time for lots of projects.

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Painting my work table a fresh new color.

 

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Making pillow cases from these fabrics and more.

 

Sewing a reversible shoulder bag. (Pattern is Lickety Split Bag by Made by Rae.)

 

Cooking. (The first a simple recipe from Smitten Kitchen. The second is a version of a cold greek pasta salad, perfect for a hot summer day.)

 

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Then to try to get myself back on track, back into a creative groove, I started a drawing class.

©2017

 

 

 

After procrastinating a year, I have started to plan a home remodeling project. This will involve the kitchen and a guest bath, so you know this will be a big messy job.  I have looked at so many paint colors and painted so many little sample cards you wouldn’t believe it.  I have so many variations of the color teal that I am looking around the house for what all I can redo with the sample paints.

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Another project was the making of these tiny shorts.  Yes, they are pretty wild, but toddlers are much less inhibited in their clothing choices than are the rest of us.  Plus the fabric has all kinds of trucks, one of the favorite things (other than pianos, guitars and violins) of this little guy. I used the pdf basic shorts pattern from the website Made Everyday with Dana.

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Another project made for the same little treasure, is this toddler blanket. I love the Nightfall collection designed by Maureen Cracknell and manufactured by Art Gallery. Hopefully the little one isn’t too grown up to appreciate all the owls, rabbits and dragonflies.

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©Copyright 2010-2017

In recent times, so much has happened in the world, in my life, in my art that blogging has fallen to the wayside.  Catching up seems like an impossible task and then I start wondering if I should blog at all.  But I do love sharing glimpses of my art explorations, cooking attempts and beach adventures as I also love seeing the explorations of others.  So I will give it another try, not by attempting to catch up, but just by continuing to show tidbits of the world from my limited vantage point.

So for today, here are a few tidbits.

First is a small self portrait done on fabric with photoshop, printing on fabric, water color paints, ink pencils and stitching.

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Here is a little fabric post card I made (though the wonders of Photoshop)  for someone who is moving far, far away on a big adventure of her own.

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And on today’s menu is a favorite soup, Pasta E Ceci.  I like all the versions (vegetarian) that I have tried, but this particular version is from “Whole Bowls” by Allison Day.

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And while the thunder is rumbling outside and I eat the warm soup, I will laugh my way through another Dave Barry book.

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©2017

 

 

Seems like it has been a month of art inspirations.

 

Had a wonderful trip to the Dali Museum to see both the Frida Kahlo exhibit as well as the Dali paintings.

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Made a quick trip to the Mancuso Quilt Florida Show in Orlando.

This was an interesting hanging sculpture in the Convention Center.

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These are a few favorites.

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“What the World Needs Now” by Gabriele DiTota (USA)

 

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“Pele: She-Who-Shapes-the-Land” by Jenny Hearn (South Africa)

 

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“The Sunrise in the Bougainvilleas” by Mihoko Tanaka (Japan)

 

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“True Blue Mates” by Yvonne Chapman (Australia)

 

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“Beginning True” by Sue de Vanny (Australia)

And then another quick but rewarding trip was made to see the SAQA Stitched: Embracing the Quilt as Fine Art exhibit in Stuart, Florida. (Runs Jan. 20th til Feb. 25th, so you still have a chance to see it.) It is a very impressive show.

I wish I had photos of all the quilts to share. I am sharing what I was able to photograph around the attendees. And that is my excuse for the quilts being shot at an angle.

These four are by Ellen Lindner (top two quilts), Karol Kusmaul (bottom left) and Margaret Knepper (bottom right).img_0115

 

This one is by Becky Stack.

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A close up of the entry by Louise Hall.

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The next one is by Loreen Leedy.

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And this is by Marianne Williamson.

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The following is by Gabriele DiTota.

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This is by Suzanne Evenson.

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I will end with a striking piece by Patricia Turner.

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©2017

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