Friday, December 30, 2011

Polka Fest at Chilkoot Charlies!

Join us January 8th for a blow out
Polka Fest at
Chilkoot Charlies!

Main Squeeze
Polka Dan
Polka Chips
Button Box Gang

Come & dance your socks off!

  ~  Happy New Year  ~

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Between Time ~

I love the "between time."
The relative emptiness of the days between
Christmas (Solstice) & New Year's.

There's sort of a timeless space
were everything slows down.
Not much is happening.
I find time for a nap, reading a good book,
playing on the floor with my child,
nibbling & drinking wine during the day.

Things slow down...
but I feel the building of things to come.

There are forces gaining momentum for a new beginning.

I've so enjoyed the holiday but as
Stephen King says...

"Talent is cheaper than table salt.
What separates the talented individual from the
successful one is a lot of hard work."

Got a lot of hard work to do this next year
& time to sleep when I'm dead!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Solstice 2011 ~

Happy Solstice!

Today is the shortest day of the year
and we're gaining light every day.

We're celebrating tonight!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

iKlip ~ Love it!

If you have a musician in the family & need a last minute gift
here's the perfect item!
The iklip!

We purchased one in December & it's really cool!
No more bulky binders & loose pages of music falling off the music stand.

Music stand?
Wait a don't need a music stand because
the iKlip attaches to your mic stand.
One less stand on the stage taking up space.

Here's the iKlip attached to my mic stand.
Sleek & low profile.

Now to get all my music loaded & organized
& then I can just flip through the music with the touch of a finger.

Happy holidays!

Sunday, December 18, 2011


I've been painting a lot lately.
I go in spurs of mediums (always glass)
but  ** spurs **
in other mediums:  fiber, sewing, painting, clay, metal, mixed media.

I'm not the neatest artist.

I thrive on organized chaos. 
Everything has it's place it's just not always in its place!
I work in my studio every day & in the wee hours of the morning ~
(that's when I call my Dad, wake him up & he says..."now, who is this??"

I aspire to having every tool & supply in its place ~ it just isn't very realistic for a
working artist who's actually making a livingas an artist.

It's interesting to me when other artists show pictures
of their studio with every single pencil & piece of paper tucked away in bins & drawers.

How, how, how do you create anything??
(maybe they clean it up & then take pictures?  Yes!  That's it!!)

I'm very visual so I love to see all my materials & supplies.
Seeing everything inspires me to go where I probably wouldn't otherwise.
If it's tucked away I forget what I have... oh, that's probably where the
artist inventory & catalog card system come into play ~ :)

I'm usually working my my studio but when I'm painting there's
better light in my house and so....

all my supplies end up on counter & dinning table. 

This works to my advantage because then Will wants to paint
(or do whatever I'm doing).
He has a good eye for color & composition.
I had a blank & gesso'd canvas laying on the table thinking
he'd probably want to paint & ....bahhhhawahhhhh!!  my evil plan worked!!

This is a painting of  "a day" & "big foot has his BIG FOOT caught in a jail."
hmmm ?  Where did he hear about "big foot?"
I'm loving the sun & turquoise sky.'s not big foot's "foot"  it is his "toe."
please make note of that....toe.  is.  caught.  in.  jail.
Happy Holidays Everyone!
* "making a living" for me is all about "life style."
An artist life style is a whole other post.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Poppies ~ 2nd in a Series

Here's a second painting of "Poppies."
I thought the composition of my first attempt wasn't quite right.

I have more canvas stretched & ready to go so I'll paint another
variation either tonight or tomorrow. 

 I'm in the groove now.

Multiple layers of watercolor, acrylic, metallic & oil pastels.
This may be my donation to the spring Gala fundraiser
at the museum...maybe.(?)

Detail image 1.

Detail image 2.

Camera paper technique.
I'm lovin'  this application and am thinking about doing some
larger digital canvases with this technique.

(finished canvas 18" X 24")

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Thinking of Summer ~

I'm missing my garden,
the sun,
& even the weeds a little bit.

Painting some poppies for a little inspiration.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Glass Bathroom ~

Whew!  The bathroom project is completed.
Here's a shot of the vanity back splash.
This is a mix of tiles that were cut down from the
 larger tiles used for the tub surround. 

The counter top trivet was also made from small left over
glass pieces.  I put bumpons on the bottom just to keep
it from sliding on the counter top. 
Love the purple-blue counter top~ it picks up the
neo-lavendar glass & is a good neutral with the other colors.
This is the coordinating tub surround.  It's flanked with
6 inch white tiles for a high contrast look.
The blue strip (3mm) was added after the 6 inch tiles for a
three dimensional and finished effect.

This is the finished piece from the previous post. 
It's a very large piece with all the shapes hand cut, layered
and then tack fused with an extended annealing period.
It'll be mounted about 2" out from the wall on brushed
nickel mounts.  The brushed nickel mounts match the
bathroom fixtures.

The paint color in the bathroom is white and the lighting is halogen
but there's also a glass block window there's plenty of ambient light.
Mounting it away from the wall will allow the glass to transmit
light & color.  Can't wait to see it mounted!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Glass Puzzle ~

Often, when I'm working on a large glass piece for a home installation
I start with a couple of color palates & then make up sample pieces.
It gives the homeowner & myself an idea of how the glass colors will look
in the home.  Light, both artificial & natural, is of utmost importance.

There's lots of variables such the wall color  (which is easy to change),
the natural light (not so easy to change) &
artificial light within the space (a possible
option to change) & how all of these things interact
with the glass.

These are left over pieces from a bathroom tub & vanity surround.
They are all 2 layers of 3mm glass which after fusing are 1/4" thick.
Some of these were cut down into strips & other patterns to create a
variety of sizes, patterns & shapes.
The tub & vanity glass has a specific pattern
(photos on that to follow). 

There's a base piece of 3mm Tetka glass (24" X 48")
& the beginning of the layout on top
It's a bit like putting a puzzle together ~ trying to fit
pieces together & coordinate colors for an abstract look. 

These are thin strips that were cut off the edge of larger tiles.

Here's the thin strips used as fillers for a more random feel.

Here's the beginning of a big project.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

UAA Crafts Fair ~

Please join me for my last event of the year!
~ Another favorite event & only 1 day ~

Booth number 43 in the student union cafeteria!
Lots of sale items & close-outs for the holidays.

As a UAA Alumni I'm happy to support the University
& love being back on campus...minus the homework!

See you Saturday!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Arts & Crafts Emporium ~

Don't hide out at home today!

Join me today for the second day of the 
Arts & Crafts Emporium!

11 to 5 pm
Dena'iana Convention Center

Monday, November 14, 2011

Man...Stop the Snow!

We've had over 15 inches of snow in the past few days!
While my husband & son shoveled us out
I worked overtime in the studio in anticipation of the upcoming
Crafts Emporium!!

Can you guess what inspired this piece??

I'm working on lots of new work & also dyed-up some beautiful
cut velvet scarves.

Crafts Emporium
November 19th & 20th
Dena'ina Convention Center
Anchorage, Alaska

See you there!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

We Have A Winner!

We have a winner!
Karlen Long from Minnesota
has won the prize for 
"My Favorite Sports Movie?"

Yes, the answer is.....

The best sports movie of all time!
Thanks for emailing me Karlen...your prize is in the mail!

(really, it is in the mail!!)

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Aurora over Anchorage!

The northern hemisphere is being treated to
 beautiful aurora displays.

It's magical.

Friday, November 4, 2011

How I Love Sports ~

My dear husband thinks I'm not into SPORTS?

Imagine that....(?)
So in the spirit of loving sports, here's a little trivia for you.

What famous sports movie does the above image reference?
It's my favorite sports movie of all time.

The first person to correctly identify the name of
"the sports movie"  will win a prize!!!

Yeah for prizes!?!?!
Comment with your winning movie name & win!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Alaska Bead & Gem Show!

Join me Sunday. October 9th
for the
Great Alaska Bead & Gem Show!
(10 to 6 pm)

This has been a fabulous event &
Sunday features free hordourves',
free bead demos, lectures, & great shopping!!

I'll be doing a few demos/lectures on
"Fast & Easy Earrings"
"The History of Beads" 20 minutes
around the 4 o'clock hour Alaska time.

Happy Beading! 

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Can You Say Lederhosen??

The Main Squeeze (plus Stephan & his beautiful family) at St. Marks.
Thank you for inviting us to share in your Octkober Fest Celebration.
We enjoyed the friendship, fabulous German food,
dancing (especially the 7 month old who waltzed with her Grandmother) & music!!

Stephan also graced us with his homemade German forest cake at the
end of our performance ~ delicious!!  
We love a man in lederhosen ~ plus he can cook!?!?

Thank you for your kindness & for inviting us to help celebrate the season.

Happy Equinox!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Start of Ocktoberfest Season ~

It's the start of Oktoberfest season so you know what that means, right?

Lots of accordion playing, dancing, eating & drink beer!
The Main Squeeze kicked off our gig list last night at the
American Legion Post 28 to a full house.

Authentic German cuisine was served & it was
beyond fabulous! 

Thanks to everyone who attended & thanks to
Post 28 for letting us entertain you.
It was a pleasure!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Women's Show ~

Join me for the Anchorage Women's Show!
Sullivan Arena

Friday, September 23rd
Saturday, September 24th
Sunday, September 25th

11 to 6 pm
~ civilized hours ~


Loose beads, tools & findings
Art glass for body & abode
Glass by William

He's very motivated to sell some of his work
to fund his Lego collection!


So, if you need some Halloween art stop bye my booth & shop! 
You'll make a 7 year old artist very happy!

Monday, September 5, 2011

It was a war ~

It was a war & the drones lost!

They've been tossed out of the hive by the workers as
 they are expendable going into the winter.

It's hard to tell but there are lots of bees in the grass.
While cleaning up the bodies a not-quite dead
soldier had a last hurrah & stung me between my toes!


A lesson to not wear sandals around the hives.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Say Hallelujah!

It was a fabulous day at the Alaska State Fair!
We renewed our public radio membership &
 received 2 free tickets to
"A Prairie Home Companion."

Courtesy of Minnesota Public Radio & KSKA.

Here's Garrison Keiller preaching to the masses.
On the mountain top...or at least in front of it!

(That's beautiful Pioneer Peak behind him.)

A sunny day, live radio show & the Alaska State Fair ~
doesn't get any better.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Wonky Comb ~

In between rain showers & downpours I've been trying to get into the bee hives.
I have two supers of honey to harvest & wonky frames of comb to check on.

This is what it looked like the last time I checked one of the hives a little over a week ago.
Two separate combs built together on one frame ~ one started from
the top & one from the bottom... 
 Stuck together!

It's beautiful white comb on the top & gooey, honey-filled, comb on the bottom.

Here you can see how the two combs are overlapping.

I removed one of the combs & in doing so the other
comb bent at a right angle to the frame.

Here it is after beekeeper surgery...all tied up with string.
Some beeks use rubber bands to hold the comb in the frame
 ~ & I've tried that in the past ~
however this hive has removed the rubber bands & strewn them in the lawn when I tried to fix up their poor engineering previously.

My theory is that they don't like the smell or texture of the rubber
and prefer the organic cotton string(?)

Hey....that might be a good science project!
For William...not me  :)

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Two Busy Little Bees!

Thanks Aubrey & Will!

These are my two seasoned honey processors.
They know how to crush the comb to release the honey,
bottle & taste test it.


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Bounty!

We're just back from Denali Park & the garden is overflowing!
I'm not sure how in 5 days the raspberries are exploding.
William & I made 2 batches of jam (about 15 jars) before we left & now we
have enough berries for at least another 4 or 5 batches.

Jam anyone???

We have golden raspberries that we love. 
BIG, yellow, & yummy!

And red raspberries of the Sitka, hardy Alaskan variety.

Overflowing flower pots.

Even though I have raised garden beds, I've never been able to get zucchini to grow without
getting rotten.  This was a little, cast-off, zucchini plant that I stuck in a big flower pot
& now has four good sized zuks growing.

We love our garden ~
It's the bounty on the season!

Monday, August 15, 2011

New Addition

We're pretty thrilled~!

We have a new addition to our family.
We've waited since Halloween, after losing Rudi-Pa-Tuti but it was
worth the wait for Coki (as in "Coki Roberts").

What can I say?? 
We're Public Radio employees (dh) & fans.
It's a total compliment as this little puppy girl is
smart, sweet, & sassy.

I have some girl friends who keep telling me she needs a middle name.


Any suggestions, anyone???

Welcome to our world Coki girl.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

To Busy to Fish ~ To Hot to Post!!

Summer time in Alaska & the living is good!

Today was a scorcher ~ somewhere in the 70's I believe ~  notice
the children running in the sprinkler?
Across the street from our house a little lemonade stand popped-up!

We live downtown in one of the oldest neighborhoods so it's a very
eclectic mix of homes & people.  We love it!

Nothing like sharing a lemonade with a good friend!


Saturday, July 2, 2011

Too Busy to Fish!?!?

The month of June flew bye in the blink of an eye!
It's hard to believe this is the 4th of July weekend!
~ Happy Independence Day America ~

I have many posts to catch up on for June including our travels in Alaska & Outside. 
I was the featured "Artist in the Park" again at Denali National Park over the weekend of June 8th through the 10th.  More on that to come as I have some great photos & stories!

Since returning from Denali I've been visiting Outside the state for business & family!
Busy, busy, busy...'s fishing season!

So even though I haven't time to actually catch any salmon
 I did pull out some tiles & glazes & paint up a couple of tiles for fun...
.production is fun but this was a reward for getting all my work done!

Love the raven eating the berries!
Both of these images started out as clip art pieces from
"Art Explosion" & then I morphed the designs.

It's hard to tell but both of these have some raised, detail, glaze.  Sort of like puff paint that stays raised even after it's fired.  I really like the effects.

The finished tiles are 6X6 inches each so two of them fit into these 12' frames.
I've also inserted them into stools for children.
Very cute gifts & easy to personalize.

OK ~ back to the studio to work on my gallery orders!
Have any questions about the tiles or glazes just shoot me a comment &
 I'm happy to answer any questions.