Monday, April 21, 2008

Did you put two and two together??? ~wink~ ?

YEP...Pursue on eBay, pursue-email, and Pursuing Art...Life and Dreams are all one of the same!!! ;-)

I've been holding on to share until the beautiful 'DIVA' arrived, so I could meet her in person, admire her, hold her and take pictures to share! It's been hard to wait.

I know that my friends who visit all know about this, but if you'll indulge me...I need to give credit where credit is due.

This stunning art doll was beaded with love and attention to detail by a very talented friend of mine, Grace Danel of Gracebeading. The beautiful and colorful face that fits her perfectly was made by the talented Jen Martin of Graphixoutpost. The wonderful and charming art doll form (in a very cool pose) was made and donated by another talented friend of mine, Monica Magness of Girl Gone Thread Wild. Grace generously beaded her for Beading For A Cure to raise money for colorectal cancer research. Grace's title for her was 'Kicking Back' and so appropriately named for her!

I feel so thankful to have her and lucky to have won this auction!!! I wish you all could see her in person and hold her...she is more beautiful and charming in person than any photos could convey. Oh, Grace...I am so thrilled and was so excited last Sunday when, at the end of the auction, my name was sitting there! I've had a smile on my face since...believe me, Mark can vouch for that! I made him bring his laptop to the coast with us because I wasn't about to miss Sunday morning! I'm sorry I didn't answer your e-mail that you sent Saturday! I wanted to get this posted first! Thank you for the e-mail and loved the extra pix of mamma and babe! Grace, you did have an idea it was me! ;-) And Monica, when I e-mailed you last must have thought I was 'losing it' or you got it, but didn't respond or let on when you wrote me back. When I ended my note to Monica, I said... P.S. Did you put two and two together???? I figured if Monica had an idea and mentioned it, Grace did too. I was wondering if anyone figured it out! Mark asked if I was going to post about it, but I told him not until I receive her and am able to take pictures to share! So when I said I had a great weekend at the coast, for more reasons that just getting out of dodge on a sunny weekend, I wasn't kidding! ;-)

She is happily sitting in my art room with me and with my other 'Diva Friend' very close by and always will be there to encourage me! I just absolutely LOVE her!!! Your beadwork is BEAUTIFUL and the Swarovski's just sparkle when the light hits her just right! She is full of life in color and yet her face is so peaceful and serene! I am so glad you ignored your inner critic and put on those inner ear plugs and just kept right on beading! She is stunning! I adore the little chair that she sits in too! It reminds me of two old ice cream chairs and a table that Mark and I have, and had since I was a little girl.

I feel so fortunate to have won her and that the money is going to a great cause! You stated you thought she went for a generous bid and that is because you are so sweet and humble Grace! However, I thought I got her for a steal! I won't even tell you what my bid was, but I put in the amount that I was truly willing to pay for her and knowing the money would go to a worthy cause! I know better, doing beadwork too, that she truly was worth WAY more than I got her for!!! At least in my opinion. Okay, I know we could add up costs for doll, face, beads, thread, and even a chair in this case, but how do you put a price tag on love and time?!! I didn't pay enough for what she truly is worth, but I am very grateful to have her Grace! She is priceless and more valuable to me than any dollar I paid for her! You know I've admired your work and dolls for a long time and I am honored to have her with me! Know that she will be loved and cherished, smiled upon and shared very proudly! ;-)

Here are two more of those pictures that show the real trees from the coast! ;-)) I think it was ocean mist in the previous picture I showed or maybe a kind of haze that day!?! The pictures we took looking the other way on the beach showed only the clear beautiful sunny day and bright blue sky. You can see in these two pictures, better, that where the ancient forest was, is an inlet area that is protected by the large rock formation that is behind it and jets out into the ocean. There are houses and real trees growing there! ~SMILE~!!! Can you imagine getting to see the view from one of those houses? Wow!

I hope this post brings you a smile and as much joy as I had sharing it! I'll visit with you soon! Keep Pursuing Art...Life and Dreams!

A friend is a person with whom I may be sincere. Before him I may think aloud. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson~

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Sunny Weekend!

We had a great time at the coast! It was so nice to get out and go play. The weather was just beautiful and the sun felt so warm on the old bones! As a matter of fact, Friday afternoon, I got a little too much sun because my face and neck got burnt. Of course, I didn't realize that until Friday evening!

This first picture is the ancient cedar forest in Neskowin, that has appeared from the recent winter storms! It is unbelieveable to think the sand is usually covering these roots and stumps and we are normally walking on top of them. I'm sure it won't be long until they are covered again! It was very cool to see! In the foreground you can see a creek that Mark got across (actually quite wide, past his knees in depth, rocky, and very cold swift water) to see it up close and take more pictures. Of course, the best picture to share with you really was this one without having to cross the creek! ;-) At least to show you the bigger scope!

This is me waiting on the safe side! I wanted to go but asked him how many years he thought it had been since he gave me a piggy back ride and did he really think we'd make it across in one piece (with me on his back, my purse, and camera too) without both of us going down! I decided and was content to wait on the other side!!!

We stopped and took pictures at Boiler Bay.

This is Whale Cove. They are both really beautiful and breathtaking!

And, are those chip stealing seagulls you were talking about! They just cleaned up the bag of chips that some people dumped on the beach before they left for the day!!! ;-)
And, what is it with men?! Mark thought he'd go down and see if he couldn't pick up that rock for us and bring it home! We like to collect rocks, especially with moss, and bring them home to our yard. But normally they are from a creek in the forest and the truck is parked about 15-20' away. He seriously thought he'd pick this boulder up, hike it about 300 yards and up a flight of stairs, and throw it into the back of the truck! I laughed so hard, I was crying!!! If you look close, his left foot is literally sinking into the sand from the shear weight of the thing! He tried to move from this point and start that 300 yard trek, held that rock for a minute, before it stayed exactly right where it wanted to be! What was he thinking???

Now, after barely recovering...and still purple...would you look at the monument he had to make with that rock that defeated him!!! Good Lord, help me! I waited patiently for him to deposit that rock in his hand, the one we would bring home, into the back of the truck and get back to our room. I promptly asked him, "what were you thinking?" Of course, he didn't understand what I was talking about, so I told him to go take a look from the balcony at the art that he left on the beach for all to see! ;-)

The sunset both nights we were there were beautiful! I especially loved this shot with the seagull flying through!

Sunday morning we woke up to the regular weather that we usually have this time of year in Oregon. That little bit of blue sky lasted about two minutes and the rest of the day stayed gray and cloudy. But we soaked in the glorious weather that we had for two days. We took one last walk on the beach in the afternoon, poked around town a little more, and stopped for Mexican dinner before it was time to head back home!

The highlight of Saturday though was that I got to meet, in person, and visit with Bobbi Kirk, known to many as beadbabe49, of Beading at the Beach. I wanted to go to the bead shop in Newport since we were there and pick up a few trinkets to bring home. I thought that Bobbi owned Nye Cottage Beads and while I was shopping, I thought if she was there I'd introduce myself. Come to find out, she doesn't own the shop but she teaches there and had just left to go gallery sit for the Visual Arts Center a few blocks away. I told the owner that I frequent her blog and that I just was going to introduce myself and say hello. She told me I should go and do that, it was only down the street. I don't know what got into me, but after I purchased some goodies, I asked Mark if he wouldn't mind stopping for a minute. It is totally unlike me to do this...but I told myself to put myself out and instead of feeling intimidated and bypassing the opportunity like I normally would, just do it!

Once we found her and I introduced myself and Mark...we had the nicest conversation! We shared art, beading, the BJP, mutual friends, the Pink Artist squares, Bead It Forward, and visited about blog land. She is as sweet, thoughtful, and down to earth as I thought! She is a real treasure!

Her beadwork is beautiful and I even got to see and hold a couple of her Basho series pieces in my hands! They are outstanding! The whole series, when complete, is going to be in a showing in August, down at the coast. It would be a perfect time to escape to the coast again and get to see the completed series in person! We are looking forward to being there!

Her husband also showed up and we enjoyed meeting him and visiting a little longer. I can't tell you how glad I was that we stopped by. I feel very privileged to have met her! Besides our great weekend, she made my day on Saturday! I asked for her forgiveness in just showing up unannounced, in my grubs, no makeup and sunburned to boot! But I wouldn't have traded our visit for anything! She is such an me and so many others!

I also signed up for the 2008 BJP last week. I am a little nervous, but I really am looking forward to it. I think the challenge and growth I'll gain from it will be wonderful! I have followed and enjoyed this year's BJP immensely!

I wanted to introduce you to Oliver Wendell! I adopted him from the lovely Pat Winter of Gatherings. I have been working on some dolls for the Comfort Doll Project and visited her blog and saw her latest "Inner Child" and fell in love with him. I purchased him from Pat and he is absolutely Darling! Oliver Wendell is Lisa's husband from Green Acres! I watched this show when I was little too! As a matter of fact, I had a hard time getting the song out of my head since I fell in love with him! ;-) Pat's handwork is beautiful, he smells heavenly, and I will shelter him from any harm! If you have time visit her Etsy shop she has wonderful items and fun kits to try!

Because bead embroidery is so time and labor intensive, and I like to bead during the day when my eyes are at their best, I find it helpful to have other projects that are less intense to work on in the evening when being with my husband. Because I wanted to donate some dolls and time to Pat's very worthy cause, I decided that I would make some Dotee dolls that I always thought were so darling! I knew these wouldn't be too time consuming and thought their faces were simple with a warm expression for the cause. Plus, the icing on the cake will be the embellishing! ;-) I would like to thank Dot of My Life, My Values, My Art, for sharing her pattern with everyone! These Dotee dolls have been being made with love and shared by artist's around the world for quite a time now! I hope that mine won't disappointment!

Lastly, one more sneak peek at some progress on my art doll! Making headway but I still have quite a way to go! She will get there eventually! I have more to share and post but I am at the bottom of the page and I need to make a few blog rounds! I am going to sign off my blog until the end of the week to get some art time in! I find that every time I get on the computer and go perusing around or am making a post, I get caught up for hours! Like... my behind is Numb!!! ;-) I'll share again very soon!

Keep Pursuing Art, Life, and Dreams...

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Getting out of Dodge!

Thought I'd share a shot of Mt. St. Helen's that I took from our living room! We can only get this full view in the fall and winter when the leaves are gone! The trees are starting to bloom and once the leaves are on we don't get the total view of the mountain! We live in Oregon and Mt. St. Helen's is in Washington!

I don't have time to share any art pictures this time because my husband and I are leaving tomorrow morning for the beach! We just decided today to see if we could get a room this weekend. I can't wait to go!!! The last time we got away together was two years ago! Our dogs were so sick, we really couldn't leave.

We took this picture at Cannon Beach two years ago. It is a picture of Haystack Rock. It is 235 feet high and is the third largest coastal monolith in the world. As you can see, it was overcast and not too sunny and warm, but we had a great time.

This time we are heading south about 60 miles and going to Lincoln City. The most exciting thing is that the weather is going to be beautiful. The forecast for here (home) is 68 Friday, 75 Saturday, and 72 on Sunday. The beach is about 1-1/2 -2 hours away and it won't be quite that warm but maybe 70 on Saturday there! Ahhhh, some sunshine on the old bones! :-) This getaway is long overdue and I can't wait to smell the ocean, take a long walk, hold hands, explore, collect some shells and treasures, take some pictures, eat some great food, do a little shopping, and find a bead shop! ;-)

About 9 miles north is a town called Neskowin. We are going to go visit because the high winds, heavy rain, and powerful surf pounding the Oregon coast recently uncovered a ancient cedar forest on the beach at Neskowin. The ancient tree stumps are usually covered in deep sand. But recent storms washed away a great deal of the beach and once again, this happened a few years ago, uncovered the tree stumps that the locals call "the ghost forest." The cedar stumps are stumps of a forest that are some 2,000 + years old. And recently the extreme erosion allowed the discovery of two cannons from a ship lost at sea near Cannon Beach. They are believed to be the missing cannons from the USS Shark, which wrecked at the Columbia River mouth more than 150 years ago. In 1898, one of it's three cannons was found at what is now Arch Cape, eventually giving the town of Cannon Beach it's name. A couple shipwrecks have shown their face in Coos Bay and another in Florence. They could be gone again soon, for how fast the coast changes. It will be cool to see and I will take pictures to share next week.

I'll leave you with a picture that our friend's wife took on their recent trip to Panama. It is a White Vented Plumeleteer...a hummingbird! The blue head is just amazing and it certainly looks larger than the Rufous and Anna's we have here in Oregon! I love hummers! We have two feeders and I grow lots of flowers that they love...salvias, petunias, fuchsias, etc.

I'll take pictures and share some WIP pictures next week! Got to get my bag packed, get some of my projects ready to go with me too, and be ready to rock n' roll in the morning. Believe me, I'll have my jeans and tennies on and be raring to go! ;-) I hope you have a great weekend!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

The Reveal of the Pink Artist Doll

I'd like to introduce you to the Pink Artist Doll!

To quote the creator of this glorious doll, "Her name is "Love Squared." She wears 180 two inch art squares. 182 artists total created her. She is just under 40" tall and weighs 6 lbs. 2 oz. She smiles because already she knows love and is able to give love unconditionally. To many, she is a symbol of hope. She stands for COURAGE and was built by a community of givers." However, the idea to create her and raise money for breast cancer was, the very talented, Monica Magness. She did the most beautiful and magical job creating her! If you do not know about this project, go and visit Monica's blog. The delightful story is there and complete with wonderful pictures!

She is on her journey to Art Doll Quarterly for photo's and will be auctioned on e-Bay to the highest bidder in the near future to raise money to benefit the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation.

These are the squares that I contributed. The square that was chosen for her dress was the nude with one breast and a big heart.

Monica suggested we make a post and show off the doll we helped to make and dedicate it to a friend or loved one that has touched our heart and a family member that supports us unconditionally. Tell someone thank you for touching our lives in a profound way.

I dedicate this doll to eight loved ones. First to my mom...who I treasure in my mind and heart and have missed everyday since January 18, 2001, when she lost a long and hard battle to Multiple Sclerosis. She raised my younger sister and I alone with tons of strength, unselfishness, love, and support. She instilled in us forever... strength, values, kindness, and love. To Nana (mom's mother)...who we lost in 1981, to uterine cancer that metastasized to her bones. She was a very loving and gracious grandmother to my sister and I. She always shared her love and encouragement. She showed us tradition and wisdom, and was always proud of us without any judgment. To Papa (mom's father)...who we lost in 1984, after he had a stroke and pretty much gave up on life after Nana passed away. He was a strong, smart, business man, and always a pillar of strength. He was rather gruff on the outside but a big teddy bear on the inside and the closest thing to a father figure my sister and I ever had. To my uncle...who lost his life to AIDS in 1987. He was intelligent, artistic, funny, and fun to be around. He lived in San Francisco and didn't come home too often. He adored and loved Nana (because she loved him unconditionally) and mom, but always had issues with Papa because his dad could never truly accept that he was Gay and always insisted there had to be a cure for his problem and would be happy to pay for it to be fixed. I miss them all...they were my family! To my devoted husband and best friend... who loves and supports me unconditionally and to whom I will be forever grateful. To my sister...who I just adore... and whose love and precious friendship, I could never live without. To my son's Blake and Spencer...who couldn't make me more proud and so thankful for the years that have given me so much to be grateful for. They do not realize all the gifts they have given me. Their love and friendship mean the world to me. I will be eternally grateful to my family for what they have shared with me. Each one... lives in my heart!!!

Breast cancer is an awful disease that needs to keep being researched and finally eradicated! I only know one friend that had breast cancer and she is a survivor; however, I know too many loved ones and friends that have had cancer. All cancer cells are pathetic and destructive. I worked in an OB/GYN office for over twenty years and have seen plenty sad diagnoses.

I not only feel in my heart about this cause, but Monica has been such an inspiration to me and so many others. It was an honor and privilege to help a friend that stepped forward to lead such a wonderful fundraiser. Bless her for putting the whole project together and following through with all the details. Bless all her friends that put their heart and soul into beautiful art squares to help Monica achieve her goal and to support the cure for breast cancer. Extra thanks and blessings to: Grace, Donna, Fiona, Mike, eb, Jodi, Kat, Alma, and Carol for contributing beautiful and meaningful accessories that made Love Squared even more stunning! Huge thanks to Jeff for being an invaluable support and help to Monica throughout this enormous project and for the lovely photos! I not only speak for myself but for everyone...we were all blessed to have you host this project with such class! Thank you for sharing your time, pictures, gratitude, humor, thoughts, etc., and keeping everyone posted on the progress of Love Squared. You made it fun and made everyone feel included. Kudos to you friend! It has been an Awesome journey that we will all cherish!!!

It's not how much we give, but how much love we put into the giving.
~Mother Teresa~