Learning how to use Brushes...

Today I was determined to learn how to use the brushes on Adobe Photoshop Elements 6 and here is the new look...sort of old and faded is the look I was going for!!! This will definitely be a learned skill.

Caroline, I hope you are proud of me!

Cindy's Jam

Quite a few years ago, I bought this yellow metal bread box for Cindy as a gift. Yesterday she sent me this photo of her jam making supplies that she keeps in it. Later on in the day, she sent me the top photo with her freshly made Strawberry Jam.
The one she that she made for me has the vase on top with the flowers blooming from her garden....Can't wait to see you when you come down in April!!! Thank you.
Hope all of you have joy in your heart and spring has sprung where you live!
We can do no great things, only small things with great love.
~Mother Teresa


The Tempe Art Festival continued....

Textual (word) collage by Richard Curtner

Vintage Designs for Signs

More ceramics for Cindy to check out.

One of the fountains from Suma Art Co in Payson. AZ.

The Fountain that I bought to leave down here. It sounds so wonderful just outside our bedroom door that steps out to the patio.
Unfortunately, their web-site seems to be down at the moment, but their e mail is


Tempe Art Festival.....

Dog friendly art festival with lots of watering holes for man and beast!!

Check out these sweet looking ceramics. Taken for Cindy

Paintings and photographs for sale.

Caroline, the Art Work would just make you grab your paint brush right year!

Metal Art. (taken for Ya Ya Sue)
It was a lovely, really warm day enjoyed with the Ya Ya's. This festival was voted to be in the top 25 festivals in the USA. Bigger than both Fountain Hills and Tubac.
I bought a great fountain that I will post tomorrow.
Today we are off the the final day of the LPGA golf at Papago Golf course. Sue has kindly agreed to feed the "Cookster" and let her out while we are away for the day...Thank you Sue


Paint Box fell from Heaven...

Thanks to my friend Suzi for sending this on, a real place in Bakersfield, CA.
I don't know who took this photo, but isn't it lovely!!!
Off with the Ya Ya's to the Tempe Arts Festival at 9:30 this morning. Photos to follow of some of the great stuff that they had.
...will be 81 today.


For my Cindy....

Yesterday was a good crafting day.
The wind was really blowing making it a good day to stay inside and just play.
Here is what I made and it has Cindy's name all over it.
The journal inside is the school composition books from Walmart. (.97 cents)
The cover was made from the drapery panel, lace on the front pocket and fringe on top were all from the previous day finds.
Some bling and a tab enclosure that has a magnet inside completes this journal. (1.25) total
Having fun was great, making this personal gift for Cindy was Priceless!!!!
If men liked shopping, they'd call it research.
Cynthia Nelms


Another Great Thrift Store Day!!!

My lovely hand embroidered .50 cent bird.!

Look @ this Loot... I must have found 10 piles of lace, for 10 cents a bag. 3 bags were purchased!I brought it home, washed it by hand and hung it outside to dry...It is beautiful.. Lots of seam binding in Cindy's tin, buttons on their cards...They were in dusty plastic bags stapled shut, so that took some time to get them all out and wiped off.

Reams of pink and turquoise trim, and you know every girl needs a ton of this trim.

Old soda fountain glass (.50 cents) which I filled with some of my found buttons. I found a huge fabric panel for $1.00 behind the glass which I washed, ripped apart and will be a cover for a new journal I am making today.
It was a totally happy day!!!


Thrift Store finds...

This was my find on Saturday before I went to my soldering class. Just a nice cake server and a lovely piece of lace. I plan to go a couple more times before heading back to BC on the 10th of April.
Hope wherever you are, the sun is shining and spring is peeking thru!
I believe that thrift is essential to well-ordered living.
John D. Rockefeller



Oh what a happy day it is when I get my Magazines in the mail. Magazines are like memories for me, I try to remember where I saw this before.
(Cindy feels this way as well)
I get Martha Stewart by subscription and Somerset I pick up at the book store. They have so many different publications, it is a joy to find a new one to feed my creative spirit.
"Art from the Heart" is from a different publisher, looks like a book, only it is soft covered. It has alredy got me thinking of some new projects that look really interesting.
Today is a day at home getting things in order for our last couple of weeks here.
Christa, I hope you won't need your dogs and dog sled in Calgary too much longer!! I really felt for you this morning!!
Memory... is the diary that we all carry about with us.
~Oscar Wilde,


Blissful Living

A little Bling!!

"Blissful Living" is a wonderful store on Main street in Mesa.
This is where I took Beth Quinn's jewellery course at their studio.
It is filled with wonderful treasures are are artfully displayed. A dreamy kind of store that helps you create this kind of environment at home.
It was really windy all day yesterday, wind gusts up to 40 miles per hour and today there is still allot of dust in the air..hard on the allergies.
Jim and a group of his golfing buddies are headed out this morning to the Arizona Golf and Country Club. One of the oldest golf courses here in Phoenix...I am sure he will have a splendid time, as I will crafting all day!!!!

The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitudes.
William James


Soldering 101

Here I am with Beth Quinn trying to learn how to solder...What fun, and you can see that I need allot of practice. It is harder to make the solder flow evenly, but I know with practice, I can do this...the question is, how many necklaces do I need or can I give as gifts..only time will tell.

Thanks Beth, for the fun filled class..I really enjoyed it.

I came home and attended the Ya Ya's 2nd annual Bean Bag Block Party Tournament!! Fun, Sun, Food and meeting up with old and new neighbours.. Good times were had!!


Off to Class...

These are some of the necklace's that I made a few weeks ago.
You buy the blanks, fill them with images you like and pour this really cool product called diamond glaze over it and voila, you have a hard like glass surface for your new jewellery!!
Find the jewellery finds here:
I am off to Beth Quinn's class this morning to learn how to actually make some charms...Of course I will take my camera along!

Happy Anniversary to Shane and Laurie. Celebrating 11 years.. Congratulations!!


Sally Jean Alexander...

I have been lucky enough to get some of this wonderful jewellery . The workmanship is amazing, treat yourself and look at her blog.
I have her book as well, and now there is an inordinate amount of crafting projects buzzing in my head.
Tomorrow I am taking a course to learn how to solder and make much fun is that.
I am thinking of you, Cindy, as these craft ideas unfold in my head!!!
There is no personal charm so great as the charm of a cheerful temperament.
Henry Van Dyke



I love birds!!

At home in my studio at Westbank, I have a row of bird related things.
My Mom found this wonderful bird's nest that was all made out of horsehair that had been woven around a stick. She gave that nest to me. I have several other nests that I have found and little eggs that I painted to look like the real thing.

This year I am on the look out for small pictures of birds that I can use in the jewellery trays that I am learning to make. My ability to draw them have fallen short of even being cute, but I do appreciate them coming to the flowers in my garden. Especially the hummingbirds which provide endless delight!
For now, I will be content with that.


Have you ever observed a humming-bird moving about in an aerial dance among the flowers - a living prismatic gem.... it is a creature of such fairy-like loveliness as to mock all description.

W.H. Hudson


Around the house today..

Vases from Ikea.

Outside in the front of the house and out of the sun most of the day.

The new Ya Ya Supper Club journal I made. We will all contribute the menu, photos & receipes that each one of us have hosted.

Mary is hosting the Greek Dinner on April 3, 2009.


Hummus, Tzatziki & Pita Chips

Greek Salad

Avgolemono (Egg, Lemon and Rice Soup)

Greek Potatoes and Spanokopita

Sauvlaki-Skewers of grilled and marinated Pork and Lamb



I don't think America will have really made it until we have our own salad dressing. Until then we're stuck behind the French, Italians, Russians and Caesarians.

~Pat McNelis


Raspberry Jam...

My love for raspberry jam is well know and look what Cindy just made for me.
The 2 largest ones have my name on them.
Just imagine breakfast with thick slices of toast, buttered and spread with this jewel like jam...who wants to come to breakfast at our house?

She picked the raspberries in October, froze them and then shared this gift.
Thank you Cindy, can't wait until you come to Westbank when we get back.
This is a sign of a true friend....

Just a little something extra to make you smile, for my friends and family still in the cold of winter!

Spring surely will be on it's way.To Jeremy and Julie, hoping you are enjoying the warmth and shows for your spring break in Vegas
Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind. "Pooh!" he whispered. "Yes, Piglet?" "Nothing," said Piglet, taking Pooh's paw. "I just wanted to be sure of you."
A.A. Milne


Christening the FirePit...

Shannon's new firepit ready and burning.

Here we are christening Shannon's firepit with Champagne.

Shannon had everything ready!!

PS.. my 600th post!!

To poke a wood fire is more solid enjoyment than almost anything else in the world.
Charles Dudley Warner


Cindy's view on Winter!!!

The view from Cindy's house in Nelson looking towards the lake...I don't tell her everyday that the sun is shinning here in AZ..or that it is 86 or so, but I do sympathize with her that winter has gone on way too long.

'But, doesn't Miss Emmy Lou just put a smile on your face..who could resist this deceptively sweet looking dog!!!
Cindy tells me that this is her cute look that she is giving the camera for her picture pose!! This is after she has worn everyone else out already!! Love that puppy stage!!
Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.
Edith Sitwell