Sunday, December 19, 2010

This is a sweet, sweet little robin from Scotland. My husband just returned from a trip overseas to visit his grandma and was able to snap this photo before he flew away. (I hear it wasn't easy.) Oh, I wish we had these over here! I might have to paint him on something...
These two photos are from a town in Scotland called Moffat. There's the Moffat Post Office and gift shops looking all Christmassy with their Christmas trees hanging off the buildings.

I was in this town before and ate at The Rumblin' Tum. What a great name. I've also been to this James Pringle Weavers gift shop and bought a porridge stirrer. I'd never seen one of those and had to get it to hang in my kitchen!

I had to include this pic of the beautiful scenery in Scotland. It's a litle hard to see but little houses are dotted all along the water.

Bed & Breakfasts are lined up in a row and so colorful in Blackpool, England. More inspiration to paint!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Nest Clock

Well, here it is. My new studio clock that I've promised to post. I searched for the perfect clock to "match" my studio and could never find it. I noticed this round wood one day and something clicked.
It hit me that I could make my own clock! I painted the bird's nest and 3 blue eggs, added the hardware and there you go, new clock! I have no blue in my studio so I'm not sure why the eggs had to be blue. But in my mind, it worked.

I hung it over my Susan Branch calendar. I have to have one of those in my studio every year also, just to make the room complete.

Sunday, November 14, 2010


Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love our two oak trees but...c'mon. We're swimming in acorns. Some years one tree explodes with acorns, some years the other but this year both have dropped so many it's like a carpet.

I'm still trying to find the best way to pick them up. So far we've raked them in piles and loaded them into buckets. And then what do we do with them?
Thanks to the folks at Country Living magazine I found a new option for our overflowing bounty. My daughter will love making these acorn necklaces sprayed with gold paint. I wonder how long these will last? We could make thousands of them!

I couldn't let fall pass by without including a photo of the burst of color in our backyard. We have two of these burning bushes and they're so large, it's all you can do to not notice them. If only we could find a way to preserve these gorgeous leaves for the rest of the year.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Christmas Voting Time

It's that time of year again...yep, time to vote for your favorite Shabby Lane Shops website for the Christmas Decorating contest! You can check out my changes on my website, (and see the pink snow).

It's super easy, just click on the Santa above and scroll down that page to click on the website you want to vote for (oh, let's just say "Wallflowers" for example...) and then click the "vote" button. Easy!

This year I painted the little blue bird and flower pot just for the holiday season. Then I used my new Photoshop software to create the rest. Fun! Oh yea, and my favorite part was changing the falling blue snow to pink!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Sunflower Fan Blades

I wanted to share my latest project with you. I painted these yellow/orangeish (although they don't look orange in the picture) sunflowers with a butterfly on white fan blades. These were painted for a friend who loves sunflowers and they'll fit right into her kitchen.
I couldn't help but line them all up in a row, just because they looked so great together.

And here I'm pretending they're hung up, imagining they're going 'round in circles. What a fun project and a great idea she had. It's like a never-ending summer!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Back To The Gardens (yay!)

BACK to the Missouri Botanical Gardens again, one of my favorite places in the world. We took the kids there on their last day of summer break and it was gorgeous. That place is getting so big, we never seem to see the whole thing in just one visit anymore.

This water feature is so cool and inviting in the Japanese Garden area. The ripples are almost hypnotic.

This is the same fountain just a different view. I'd like one of these in my backyard please.

They call this the Climatron conservatory. We didn't make it in there this time but we've toured it several times before (and I'm assuming (hoping) many times to come). I was there once in the wintertime and when we stepped in, it was like we were transformed into summer. Everything was so lush and green.

Beautiful lily pads were still blooming. Somehow the water always looks black in this pond but it creates such a stunning effect with the flowers. Love it.

I think I take a picture of this fountain every time I'm there. I always try to capture how lovely it is. You have to imagine the gentle spraying sound of the drops as they hit the water. If only a camera could capture this...

I'd never seen water quite like this before. It was as if someone had dripped food coloring in and swirled it with a stick, just a little, to create this green marbling affect. I thought it was beautiful, but I noticed all of the fish were at the other (clear) end of the pond.

One of the ever-changing areas of the gardens. When I visited in late spring this scene was totally different. They had just planted annuals but now, presto chango...magically it's a whole new garden!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Art Expo 2010

Amazingly, every year in August the streets around the "square" in our town come to life with beautiful street chalk murals. This is an example of one of the winning designs of the almost 40 entries.

The finished "painting". I sooo love the colors. It's too bad they get washed away when it rains. AND we all drive over them when the weekend's over!

This is a view of one of the streets with the artists at work. They begin in the morning and judging is at 6:00 pm. That's a lot of art created in a short amount of time.

I think we all know who this is...

Ta daa!
The much-used bandstand with gorgeous balloons flying all around the square.
This fountain sits in the center and occasionally sprays us with much needed mist on a hot hot day. It's even beautiful at night with it's multi-colored lights.

More artwork. I think this was made by high school students. Isn't that amazing?
This year's highlight included a professional sand sculpturer. Wow. You have to scroll down and see his creation. These great sandboxes were set up around the sculpture for the children. This was definitely a highlight for my kids!

This is where he's just getting started. Only one man worked on this and finished it on the second day.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Pumpkins Galore

The "baby" pumpkins are quietly taking over and slowly making their way up to the tomatoes for a sneak attack. Last fall my son smashed a leftover pumpkin in the corner of my mom's garden and who knew that would be better than carefully planting each seed one by one.

But either way, I'm so excited to see signs of fall peeking through!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Gettin' Ready

I just wanted to share a photo of the wall that Tony (my husband) built for me for an upcoming art show. He started building a second wall because they just fill up so fast, I'm already out of room on this one. It's currently standing in the middle of my studio. It will be interesting to see where the second wall will stand. I might not be able to walk into my studio after that one's up!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Ocean Painting

I just completed this painting a few days ago and although it isn't very large (6" by 12"), I sooo want to be there! I've wanted to paint this scene for awhile, imagining I'm walking along the beach while waves gently glide over my feet. Puffs of cotton float in the sky. It's a simple scene but the blues in this painting are so calming it just makes me feel...well,...calm.
Here's the same painting on the shelf my husband built for our bathroom.

I just had to share photos of the shelf, he did such a great job!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Tea Time

One day a week, my son visits his grandma and they have lunch together. I knew all about the hot tea, the soft boiled eggs in a cup and the "soldiers" (toast cut into long strips) they make. It wasn't until recently I discovered they break out the fine china. Now that's a tea party! And notice...they each have their own salt and pepper shakers!

This reminds me of my little kitchen when I was a little girl, although our place settings weren't quite so, how should I say, ... elegant. One thing's for sure, my son will always remember spending this special time with his grandma.

Monday, June 28, 2010

The New Shabby Lane Shops Summer Garden Magazines Are Here!

They're here, they're here! This is a Shabby Lane Shops, 48 page magazine with great articles, gardening tips, summer recipes and even a short story (written by moi!). This cover is so luscious, it almost bursts with summer yumminess. If you would like a copy, click here to order from my website.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Spice Rack

This is it, the spice rack I grew up with. Once I got ahold of it, it will never be the same. It became the star in a short story I just wrote for the Summer Garden issue of Shabby Lane Shops magazine. Which, by the way, will be coming out in a few short days! (Yay!)

I had so much fun transforming this piece into something totally different. The doors came off, the drawers came out (still deciding how I will reuse those pieces) and I painted the whole thing satin black. A little distressing, a little hand painting and voila! I now have a place to put my egg cup collection! (I have a little confession...I don't really like egg in a cup. I just like the cups.) These beauties came from Britain when family members visited there recently.

The nest at the bottom is a real hummingbird nest. I found it in our yard a couple of years ago and hung onto it until I found the perfect "nesting" place. How lucky that it fits perfectly with egg cups!