Saturday, March 24, 2012

Spring has Sprung!


a bird in the morning, telling me to get-up -
It's Spring! 


We have sunny skies with high clouds, and a day headed for 74'(degrees).
The birds started singing about 10 days ago, really.
I so look forward to their sound every year.
It means it truly is Spring!

"Florida Sunshine"
original collage art doll by inkspired

Another reason I know it is Spring?
I have three, count 'em, three daffodils blooming today!

This is a photo taken last year.
Yep, with that big 'ol dandelion right in the middle! Those haven't started blooming yet, but we sure do have the greens!
I also have small prickly weeds already starting in my garden.

Today we are cleaning out my 2 front gardens (pretty small actually).
Michael is going to start in on chopping down our African grasses.
'Winter Interest' they call them here.
We have little ones ( about 3 feet high)
and we have gi-normous ones about 7 feet high!

this is the space I would have put a photo of our 'winter interest'
only I can't find it!
I really want to get outside and get started so just try to imagine it!

"New Zealand Springs"
original collage art doll

Oh yes, I am unashamedly plugging my new website!
I did get 2 pages up (finally).

Some more spring birds:

vintage art

and yes...I can't wait for my johnny jump-ups to really get blooming!
I have had a scattered few blooms, plus pansies
all winter long!!

Gotta go now, weeds are calling,
lots of pollen laden dried garden refuse...
and dirt!


Free Weeds!
Pick your own!

a sign I plan to paint and put in my garden....


Friday, March 23, 2012

A new day for Peace


'Peace' to Israel

In memory of the children and adults killed in France
March, 2012

Today is a new day.
A day to be reminded that we are all one.
Our outsides may look different,
and even our insides might look a little different,
We Are One People
created in the image of G-d.

We are to be at peace with each other.
Celebrate our similarities.
Celebrate our differences.

Be at peace,
and rejoice!


[also found 'Runyaro']

('Peace' in the Shona language, spoken in Zimbabwe)



('Peace' in Latvian)

I know I have mentioned it before, but I really really like the
Playing For Change
organization and their musical works.
I hope you enjoyed the song I have picked for you today (listed above).
a closeup of a design available to wear at

I cried today for the children and their parents at the Jewish school in France.
May they rest in God's hands. Amen.

children reading a Jewish book together in Yemen

A beautiful song, sung by a 12 year old British boy:

We will never find peace as a people
as a nation
as a world
until we recognize God's greatest gift of peace:
His only son, Jesus Christ.

( 'Your love broke through' by Keith Green, performed by Russ Taff)

"Then the King will say to those on His right,
'Come, you who are blessed of My Father,
inherit the kingdom prepared for you
from the foundation of the world.
For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat;
I was thirsty, and you gave Me cold to drink,
I was a stranger, and  you invited Me in;
naked, and you clothed Me;
I was sick, and you visited Me;
I was in prison, and you came to Me.'
"Then the righteous will answer Him, saying,
'Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You,
or thirsty, and give You drink?
And when did we see You a stranger,
and invite You in,
or naked, and clothe You?
"And when did we see You sick, or in prison,
and come to You?"
"And the King will answer and say to them,
'Truly, I say to you,
to the extent that you did it for one of these brothers of Mine,
even the least of them,
you did it to Me.'
- Matthew 25:34 - 40, New American Standard translation

Take a moment out of your day, and do something nice!


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Starting to think about Easter and bunny trails


Yiddish for 'Peace', spoken in Israel and by other Jewish speaking persons

Well, so far this year I have been late for
Valentine's Day
St. Patrick's Day
President's Day
and probably more that I don't even know I have missed!

So, I thought I better jump right in to Easter preparations
or it will be done and gone!!

from unknown shop

I like to get out some of my angels for Easter.
I do a little display with them on a half table I have under a HUGE mirror.
I also have 2 areas on either side of our tv.
Since The Cat J.T. (Junior Terrorist) is gone now,
I can also put things on my round side table in the LR,
and things on my little cut out arbor/thingy in the wall by the stairs to go up.

This is a special angel my sister gave me.
She and/or the kids usually give me at least one angel for either my birthday
or Christmas. (My birthday is in December.)

It's kind of funny/ironic really.
My mom's birthday was Dec. 28.
Her entire life all of her aunts and uncles would send ONE gift
and ONE card with the message
"Happy birthday and Merry Christmas".
This really made her crazy.
Everyone else got a present/card on their birthday
a present/card at Christmas time.

vintage clip from LisaVollrath

So Grandma and Grandpa McDowell,
and later my Dad and us two girls,
would make a big deal about having a Birthday party for Mom,
and wrapping her presents in Birthday paper
and no Christmas left-overs!

Nothing could even hint 'Christmas'.

Since my birthday comes at the beginning of December,
Mom always made sure that my birthday was like that too.
I never received anything growing up that even remotely suggested
Christmas season, or the Holidays or anything like that.
We also didn't decorate for Christmas until after my Birthday.

My dear husband has continued this tradition.
He always makes it a point to go out and buy a new roll of wrapping paper for any birthday gifts he gives me.  No red and green here!!

Mom has been gone for 10 years now.
Dad has been gone for 5 years.
Now each year my Birthday celebration from my sister
has been getting more and more Christmas-like.
This year I got a beautiful black velveteen placemat with silver branches and berries embroidered on it. It came with a pretty little votive candle holder wrapped in silver branches with silver berries.
Very pretty.
Definitely Christmas decorations!!!

 I usually receive some kind of angel ornament
(for a Christmas tree)
or an angel decorated box
(for Christmas decorating) get the idea!

This year she even said:
"Oh, birthday, Christmas, whatever"
when referring to my birthday presents!

I wonder if next year I will receive One birthday present
with a card that reads
"Happy Birthday and Merry Christmas"!!!

So am I really complaining?
At this point I am just grateful that she even thinks of me enough
to get a present/card for me!
Although I suspect it is more and more the kids that remember me...
not her.
Oh well, we get what we can, don't we?

And what does this have to do with Easter????
Well, I DID go off on a bunny trail....

c. 1905 vintage song sheet cover

I am hoping to get some Easter eggs colored soon.
I went back over some of my previous blogs.
Can you believe it has been over ONE YEAR now that I have blogged?
Anyway, I found Easter Egg decorating ideas
and Deviled Eggs recipes
and more!
(but wait....there's more....a favorite tv commercial we make fun of)

These specific dates I found the above ideas.
I thought you might like to check them out again!
Mar 26, 2011
April 12, 2011
April 13
April 15
April 16
April 23
April 26
April 30

Instead of checking out the dates listed,
 you can type into the 'search' box at the upper left corner
at the top of my blog, words like:

Easter egg
deviled egg recipe
Easter chick

and other words like that....

These are paper mache' floral eggs.
While I don't have down which place I found these at,
you can 'google' and find plenty to check out!

I will be thinking more about Easter,
and sharing in future blogs.
I love the symbolism of Easter morning that is contained in a little egg.
I love the fun we have with bunnies and chicks
and colored eggs and jelly beans
and childrens' wonder at it all.
I love that beneath all of the frivolity and fun
there is a deeper, life changing meaning to it all.
Let's explore it all together in the upcoming days of
Easter Season.

the Easter...hippo?
a rubber stamp from

Oh yes, and I have now have 2 pages partially done on my


Monday, March 19, 2012

a long week


Sinhala for 'Peace', spoken in Sri Lanka

Sri Lankan dancers in traditional dress


My blogging has been a bit spotty lately - sorry! It was a long week.
But today is a new week,
a new day!

I have been working (and I do mean working!) on opening a new shop on etsy.
It's up and running!  I have listed 2 items:

'M'Lady's canter' original collage paper painting by inkspired
I also have reserved a new domain name:



While I think yahoo small business has some really nice features,
I have gone around and around trying to open this new domain name,
and a new web site.
No, the web site hasn't even begun to be formed yet,
but one thing at a time!!!

I did get to 'know' Jeff! He works in the call center for yahoo small businesses in Portland. They had a ton of snow last week.
snow air mail courtesy of

Hi Jeff!!!

Here are a couple of mandalas that I wish I had printed off last week.
I could have colored them in all the time I spent on


or maybe I should have printed out some paper dolls-
after cutting them out (while on hold) I could have then played with them
(while on hold)!

Here is a charming "the Ginghams" winter set:

or, I could have done some beading:

Sorry, I don't know whose pattern this is.
It is for a double sided amulet purse, done in peyote or brick stitch.

Here is a medallion crocheted afghan that I have wanted to start for ages.
Perhaps you would like to make one!

It is copied from an old 'Decorating and Craft Ideas' magazine.
The pattern is by Sidney Melton.

Well, part of my long week and even longer weekend was a huge flare-up with my fibromyalgia. Ick. I hate taking pills - prescription or others.
sometimes you just have to do what you can.
I really need to finish this blog so I can go take a shower.
One of the set-backs with fibro is I haven't been able to raise my arms.
Kinda' hard to wash your hair if you can't raise your arms....

We also have been having terrific winds -
and I don't mean that in a wonderful kind of terrific!
Later today I am going outside to check all around the house for wind damage.
It really has been ferocious.
That wreaks havoc with my migraines/headaches.
Did I mention Ick?
It was an over-the-top Winnie the Pooh
Blustery Day kind of day!

But if Pooh Bear and Rabbit can dance,
then so can I!

Enjoy the day!
Check out my new etsy store:
Play paperdolls with a friend!
Get out those scraps of yarn you have been saving for a some-day project!

and have fun!


Monday, March 12, 2012

Beautiful music

Just a quickie little blog today.  My back has been preventing me from spending much time typing on the computer.

I found this beautiful music clip that I thought you would all enjoy:

I think she is amazing. I have never heard this piece of music, and it is just hauntingly beautiful.
Hope you enjoy!
'Lil Miss Muffet' collage paper painting

One of my newest paper creations.

Sunday, March 11, 2012


(Gaelic for 'peace')

Dun Dealgan, Ireland

Saint Patrick's Day is coming!



How Soon?

Very soon!!!

(slight paraphrase from an hilarious scene in 'Romancing the Stone')

vintage graphics

(c. means 'circa', or in this case I use it for 'copyright')

For today, we will celebrate a wee bit of blarney to start off our countdown to

St. Patrick's Day!!

vintage clip

Now, is that a leprechaun,
or just a little boy?

vintage clip

I'm sorry, I don't have any 'where I found this' addresses for most of my vintage Irish clip. If it is 'yours', let me know and I will give credit where it is due.

I was playing around on the other day.
They have added some really fun features,
and it is an extensive interactive web site now!

I downloaded some Barbie Around the World Adobe Reader docs.
Unfortunately, I have no idea how to pass these on to you.
I recommend you go to the site, sign in, and just play!
The one I suggest for today is
"Printable_Ireland Barbie around the world.pdf"

Next up I have two beaded safety pin patterns for you:


If you can't remember how to do safety pin beaded pins, just do a search of my blog for 'safety pin tutorial'.

You also can do a search for other fun safety pin beaded pins patterns on previous blogs,
by typing in 'safety pin pattern'.

Here's another one, with not so much blarney!

The flag of Ireland:

It is a tradition here in the United States that everyone has to wear a
bit 'o green on St. Patrick's Day. If you are caught with NO green,
then you get pinched!
After a couple of pinches, you are ready to pin on ANYTHING  green!!

These adorable little safety pin pins bead up very quickly.
Why not make several to share with your office mates?
Or your friends at school?
Or the neighborhood kids?


Here are two recipes I found at Better Homes & Gardens:

Corned beef and cabbage crock pot
Better homes & gardens recipes

·         1  3- to 4-pound  corned beef brisket with spice packet
·         1/2  small head  cabbage, cut into 3 wedges
·         4  medium  carrots, peeled, and cut into 2-inch pieces
·         1  medium  onion, quartered
·         2  medium  yellow potatoes, cut into 2-inch pieces
·         1/2  cup  water

1. Trim fat from meat. If necessary, cut brisket to fit into a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker. Sprinkle spices from packet evenly over meat; rub in with your fingers.
Place cabbage, carrots, onion, and potatoes in the slow cooker. Pour water over vegetables. Top with brisket.
2. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 10 to 12 hours or on high-heat setting for 5 to 6 hours. Transfer meat to a cutting board. Thinly slice against the grain. Serve vegetables with a slotted spoon. Makes 6 servings.

Irish Coffee:

·         1-1/2  ounce  Irish whiskey (3 tablespoons)
·         1  tablespoon  brown sugar
·         1  cup  brewed coffee
·         1  tablespoon  whipping cream, slightly whipped
1. Pour whiskey into a 10-ounce mug. Stir in brown sugar. Add coffee; stir until sugar is dissolved. With a spoon, carefully dollop whipped cream so it will float on the surface of the coffee. Makes 1 - 10-ounce serving.

Sorry about the kinda' weird fonts and all,
that's how it translated when I copied/pasted!
Oh, the mysteries of fonts and spellings and text sizes and colors....

One of my favorite vintage magazine covers:

Actress Colleen Moore has a fascinating life story....for another time.

Print these out on sticker paper to give out to any child that passes your way!
Or to give out to any adult that passes your way...

You could also print them out and make cute little cards.
Frame the printed graphic with borders of cardstock:
Yellow Green

It's easy to do! Your first color is cut 1/8" larger than your clip art. Glue to back.
Your second color of cardstock is cut 1/8" larger than the 1st color layer.
Glue to back.
You can repeat as many times as you wish, but 1 - 3 layers is typical.

Place onto a solid color cardstock - any of the above colors that you didn't use would work great.
You could also easily use a white cardstock as your base.

Hand print a little
"Happy Saint Patrick's Day"
on the inside, or purchase/print out phrases to your liking.
Glue inside.
You have cute cards to pass out on a fun Irish Day!

Bonus extras: On the front -
Add a 1/8" or 1/16" ribbon bow to a corner.
Glue on a green, white or gold button to a corner to accent.
Dab little sparkle glue dots to accent. (Stickles are fun to use!)

Another idea:
Why not print out and glue one of the above cute leprechauns to the front of cardstock, as suggested above.
Then, on the inside of the little card,
punch 2 small holes horizontal to each other.
Next pin on one of your themed safety pin beaded pins through the tiny holes.
You now have a really darling little card-with-gift to give.
(And no one needs to know it didn't take any time at all to make!)

If mailing, I would use a padded envelope so the safety pins don't
'sproing' in the mail.

"Better fifty enemies outside the house
than one within."

- an Irish blessing

Dun Dealgan, a castle relic from ancient Ireland

Now, go buy some green socks....