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Friday, March 27, 2020

Working on Finding My Muse Again

These are strange times, aren't they? Things keep changing day by day. So much to take in.
And, I am having trouble keeping my spirts up as I bet a lot of you are as well.
I started gathering things together to get inspired to make things.
It kinda works.

My bank closed. The streetcars have sopped running. The parking lots by the ocean are closed.
Strange times.

I am organizing pages for various altered books.....These photos fit perfectly with the book pages...

I just stop to appreciate the beauty in the old and this.

These book pages are exactly the size of vintage postcards...
I KNOW I will be going to Paris again....may as well make a Paris book..

Have you been getting these notices? For two days people are going around and taping these to front doors.
I've never seen anything like this before.

Since we aren't supposed to go out, I started putting my outgoing mail  clipped to my front gate and my wonderful mail man takes them.
Every day Jose, my mailman, delivers mail and smiles and waves to everyone.
An everyday hero.

I have really been enjoying Roxanne Evans Stout's  book Dancing on Raindrops. Such beautiful photos in her peaceful and comforting...

Marie Kondo Lovers may want to avert their eyes and not look at this next photo.

After looking at Roxanne's book several mornings with my coffee I decided to CLEAN MY STUDIO. Go figure.
I am inspired by the beauty in the book and also I am having a rough time feeling really creative.
I have made a huge mess and things are going to get worse before they get better.
My biggest problem is lack of storage space....I took everything off my work table and put it on the floor....but now what?
to be continued....

I am always trying to find beauty in every day life, now more than ever.

I woke up to this on my birthday. My husband is the best. He planted a lilac tree in the yard years ago just because I love lilacs so much. The tree squeezes out about two bouquets every year around my birthday.
They make me so happy.
And, so do all the lovely folks who sent me cards and letters and surprises and emails for my birthday.
Thank you all very much.
There are loads of free or reduced online classes going on. Anyone taking any?
What are you all doing to get through this? Feeling creative? Or wanting to lay down on the couch?
I am cooking a lot and cleaning.
I guess that gives me some sense of control.

Stay safe and sane, everyone.

SEND GOOD MAIL (it will cheer people up)!

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Locked Down but Not Locked Out

Who is that sassy girl?
I love this envelope made by my pal Missy Millie....seeing her in my mailbox really cheered me up, especially since I can't really go out.....
She had the wrong zip code so it took a while to get to me but get to me it did...

Well, this was sure a as we know it isn't the same....San Francisco is  locked down and rumor has it, things may get worse. So far I have only gone out for food and I am going stir crazy, even with the multitude of projects I have to work on....
So, what am I doing?

Drinking a lot of tea. I love the Smith Tea Company in Portland and treated myself to a new box. This is turmeric tea and pretty good. Just look at that tea bag -- so pretty. You KNOW I will have to do something with that tea bag....I love their Meadow Tea too....I'm just sayin' incase you are browsing their website for some tea you might like....

Besides drinking tea (and some wine) I have been reading books. I don't like to recommend books because we all have wildly different tastes in books (& movies...I hated Parasite and everyone else loved it) but I really, really enjoyed this book. And, you might too. And if you're really lucky, your library may be opened so you can get it from the library. It is a feel good-book and I need to feel better!

Happily I have a BIG stash of arty/crafty/mixed media/textile books and I have had ample time to sit and page through them and get ideas for projects. I hope you have some good books in your stash too.

This charming sewn folder was inside the Sassy Girl envelope (above).

All the way from OZ and my birthday buddy Vizma.
(Happy Birthday Aries pal!)

A delightful birthday surprise from my Portland buddy Miss Polly. My birthday is next week but what the heck....I opened it early. The PDXCC has their own pencil cases!
I really think the SF Correspondence Co-Op needs our own too.

I actually SET UP my unused sewing machine and I tried stitching on paper but the thread jammed. Or something. Now I am VERY cranky and I can't even ask anyone to come over and help me.

When the walls start closing in, at least I can go out on my deck for some fresh air and some Meyer lemons....

And, I can go out in the garden and smell the jasmine vines. They are all blooming like crazy and small so good. I also have been watching the little buds come to life. Nature is such a balm.

This plant is old and has lots of beautiful flowers.....

My favorite flowers and I actually have some blooming. They don't seem to do well here in San Francisco but my old lilac bush squeezes out a few every year right around my birthday.
I have lots of projects -- altered books, gelli printing, hand sewing and embroidery, etc -- but I only seem to want to sit and read. I guess I am trying to get used to the new and hopefully temporary reality.
I love Instagram and have been trolling through IG for inspiration. There is some wonderful art on there and lots of good mail ideas. You can sign up and make your account totally locked up (like SF!) and private but then you can see some great stuff. I can recommend some beautiful feeds if there is any interest.

So, I was thinking....
Maybe we could ALL make something "together"? want to try? I was thinking  Altered Altoid Tins or maybe Pocket Books....
Do you all have an Altoid tin? Some double stick tape? Gel Medium?
Want to play?
Clear those cookies and comment below if you do and I will try to set something up. It would be kind of fun to all work on the same basic project....I wish you could all come over but we know that can't happen right now.

Tell me what you think. And, tell me how you are all doing out there...How are YOU coping with things? Are you all under the Shelter In Place rule??
Stay safe and take care of yourselves.
And do something nice for someone else.


Sunday, March 15, 2020

We Are In This Together

Hello friends,
I have been thinking of you all and hoping everyone is doing ok. These are difficult and trying times, aren't they?
The situation seems to change every day. San Francisco is locked up -- museums, libraries, concert halls, schools,  etc are all closed. Supermarket shelves are empty.
People are anxious.
If we were to try to be kind, stop hoarding and share what we have, things would be better.
Kindness goes a long way.

We need art and beauty more than ever in our lives. Put on some beautiful music. Make a pot of tea. Sit down and write a letter to someone you love.

I am very lucky I know...I have loads of art supplies and a studio to work in.  No small children who are locked out of school. Many small and large businesses are suffering and people who cannot afford to miss paychecks are out of work. My heart goes out to them.

I cancelled two trips already and was feeling a little sorry for myself until I started thinking about the folks who are really suffering. Those who are sick and those who are out of work. Now I am trying to think of ways to help out.

What are you going to do?
I am going to try to be calm and live my life and wash my hands a lot. Make a lot of art so I will actually have something to show for this time period. I am still seeing friends one on one. Being isolated isn't good for the soul.
When I heard the SF Public Library was closing, I raced down to get a big pile of books to read
since I'll have more time at home. I may take an online art class. Work outside in my garden. Do some embroidery and slow stitching.
Make some Irish soda bread and cookies and deliver them to my neighbors.

It wouldn't hurt to work on cleaning up my studio a bit either.

I don't hoard and I hope I can find simple things like milk and vegetables.
I am happy to have a supply of Peets coffee and some gin, just in case things keep on getting worse.

Keep your sense of humor. Look for beauty. Find the grace notes. Help each other.

I thought I would try to post on the blog more to keep in touch with you all. I think a lot of us are feeling a little lonely these days. 
I would really like to invite everyone over to my house for a nice meal.

Let's keep in touch, ok?
By the way, if you have trouble commenting in the blog, just clear your cookies -- clear history -- and you should be able too.
I need to hear back from you friends.
Stay stay out there.



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