This part of my blog is all about the things I collect or the things I make myself. I love so many things, I paint and draw and want to learn oils and pastels. I knit and crochet but want to learn tatting. I embroider and can turn my hand to most things given a chance. So much still to learn and do. I live in hope of some day reading all my books, learning all I want to learn and now I am learning to blog. You will often find my original poems, poor as they are I offer them here. I also appreciate other people art and will feature things I find that I have enjoyed. That includes pictures of fairies and fantasy or maybe just anything beautiful.
I try to use my own photo's as much as possible, sometimes I borrow from the web. If I inadvertently use your picture without giving credit, please do let me know and I will either credit or remove it, I hope you will do the same with mine.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Loves Old Boxes..............

I love old boxes. I collect them. Well of course I do don't I, what don't I collect right?.......well I have two old trunks to begin with. My friend Nancy loves to finish old furniture and she will finish anything she gets her hands on. Me, well I leave them "rustic". That means I don't want to mess with the smelly stuff and do all that work. So........thanks to Nancy I have a nice collection of nicely finished off boxes. The two trunks came from her. The one in the bedroom is full of my dads old army blankets and souveniers.
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I find the boxes (and baskets) very handy to store things in. Better than plastic boxes and I can keep them out on display. This old tool chest I have yet to find a use for but the other one is now a laundry cupboard. Looks a lot nicer when I don't have all my outdoor plants inside.
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I like crates, used for vegetables and other things. Good for magazines and books. Toy boxes in Tristens room and for storage under benches.
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You can see the ones Nancy had her hands on, they are nice and shiny and polished. The ones I find are just rough. I do like painted ones though and like those in their original condition. This one (and my English box) have bird seed and supplies in them.
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Small cheese boxes I use for pencils, colouring pencils, patterns and just about any little thing I want to be able to find. You can see the wooden barrel, yes Nancy polished that too. That holds a collection of walking sticks and my Dad's old cane fishing rods. I also see I have some dusting to do. Don't look OK.
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Picnic hampers and whicker baskets are handy too for storing things. Of course if I were to get rid of all the stuff I need to store I would have a whole lot more space.
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I also like small useless boxes too.
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This is an egg crate that Nancy finished and well, all the things Nancy does not want ends up at my house because I cant bear to see them go in a garage sale. I always get first dips. Some day I will just have to go through my entire house and get rid of things. Sigh!!!!
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Some crates make wall shelves, I have an old Coco cola crate and this Pepsi one and they are on the walls in the kitchen.
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Well I know what I will be doing tomorrow.......polishing.
Sharing with Ivy and Elephants so you can all see my dusty house.
Also with Inspire Me Please
I am also linking up with Inspire Me Wednesday

Friday, November 7, 2014

Last Sketch Book...............

It is taking much longer to fill this sketch book but I have enjoyed it just the same as the first. However, I think I need to be done. I now need to actually do something constructive. I have a few more pages to fill and will take my time with those. I would like to try to do some ACEOs (Art Cards, Editions and Originals) or Artist Trading Cards. I am not sure about selling them but that will have to be seen what I can come up with. I will get some ideas from my sketch books. In my sketch books I have used or drawn on other artists for inspiration. When I begin now, with ACEOs they will all be originals.
So for now I will post some pages from this last sketch book.On this page, the girl is copied from and advertisement if I remember correctly. I was trying to get the pose.
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I enjoyed myself by drawing a few horses, I was in the mood for them for some reason.
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Another thing I have enjoyed doing is Sunflowers. They are such happy flowers and a delight to draw and paint. I will be doing more of those, and bees, I love doing bees.
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I also like fairies and think I will paint some of those after this. All my sketch book things were done quickly with no skill, I will have to do better when I begin again.
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My naked lady got painted. I like her.
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This one is an experiment in trying to get a masculine face that looks like a man. Hmmmmmm its difficult for me
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I also enjoy drawing animals
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Well thats just a few from this sketchbook, but I think thats enough. This really is just for my record when I print out my blogs. If someone enjoys them then that is a bonus for me.
I am sharing this with Adorned from above with thanks
Also with A Dedicated House Make it Pretty Monday
Going over to Ivy and Elephants to join those fine folks
I am also sharing with Inspire me Monday at Create with Joy
and with Inspire me Wednesday

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Romeo and Juliet..................

I am not a big fan of Shakespeare really, but I have to admit to a few of his productions that I adore. One being Romeo and Juliet. I don't think I would have enjoyed it quite so much had I not seen it in movie form. For that I am grateful. The new sets and the big picture just makes it all so real. Last night we watched the newer version. Have to admit it was because I thought Romeo was "hot" ........

They are so very young. Nothing brings this into reality like the passion. The bravado of the young men. Then the reality of death. I don't think we can ever love like that again in our lives as we do at 15 or 16. I suppose if life works out for us then we marry that first love but in my experience there is not often that happy ever after and so the death of Romeo and Juliet made them the perfect love.
The only thing this version lacked was the wonderful music of the 1968 version.

The music was and still is incredibly romantic.

While listening last night to the familiar words, I realize how many things we say today come from Romeo and Juliet.
What's in a name? that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet;

My favourite and I do believe written on John Kennedy Jr's Christening cup
“When he shall die,
Take him and cut him out in little stars,
And he will make the face of heaven so fine
That all the world will be in love with night
And pay no worship to the garish sun.”

“Don't waste your love on somebody, who doesn't value it.”

“Do not swear by the moon, for she changes constantly. then your love would also change.”

“See how she leans her cheek upon her hand.
O, that I were a glove upon that hand
That I might touch that cheek!”

So many I would have to write out the whole script. It is sooooo romantic. More so as they redo it. The actors speak with real feeling in these modern versions where many of the stage productions are just acting.This newest version is the best acted of all. Well anyway, that was my movie for the night and I wanted to share it.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Last leaves that fall...............

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My garden is sleeping, its gone until Spring now. Yet a few pretty leaves still cling to the trees.........
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The yellows and reds are really crisp and bright
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He will soon be sleeping somewhere warm
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There are still a few last blooms that are bright in the sunshine
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I could not waste these beautiful colours, I just had to post them somewhere so there ya go. Those brilliant colours in the sunshine and a bright blue sky. How wonderful is that?
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These are not eating apples, at least I have never tried them. I wish that the deer would come and get them although I suspect the rabbits and coons etc do have a snack or two.
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The other ones are certainly crab apples. This tree is double. It has two sides to it.Meanwhile I just can't stop looking at the brilliant colours.
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They say it might snow tomorrow night, so this may be all for this year so I just had to get this all down here.
Boots enjoying some last sunny days. She stays in more now its colder.
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Brea is also enjoying the sun too
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Well I could go on and on but I wont. Here is a seed pod I always like looking at those.
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I had better go for now. I want to get to bed, still not over the flu yet, well the tiredness anyway. Getting there though, tomorrow will be better. I have to find more things for us to do..........meanwhile tomorrow it must be about the house. I have not done much for well over a week except the basics. Time to whip up some energy and get down to it.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Favourite places................

Some of the places that are always on my never miss list.
When we go out to the Sleeping Bear Dunes natural area there are places I just have to stop. In every little town in Northern Michigan there are places that tourists will love. My personal favourites are ones that sell and display hand made items made by people who live here in Northern Michigan.They sell art by local artists, photography by local photographers and pottery and garden things. I can't afford to spend much ever but I do buy small things when I can, I get much pleasure from looking at what people create. I get inspiration to do things myself. I like the simple things too and have often found a piece on the beach that is beautiful just as it is. I surround myself by these things that I love.
The first place I will show is is called "WildFlowers" of Glen Arbor. Its a garden shop and much much more, in fact they have expanded and grown. Yes expensive, but what isn't these days. They are beautiful from the outside in.

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The whole of Glen Arbor is an art colony of sorts. On the main street are art galleries galore that feature local artisans and craftspeople. Unique things in each store. I don't often get time to browse there but I always make time for Wildflowers.
Going in the opposite direction towards Charlevoix is another place I seldom miss is the Bier Gallery
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This wonderful place exhibits all the things I love from sculptures to glass, to all kinds of hand made items.
I have collected a few of the froggy sculptures. I also have some of the cats. I would love some of the bigger things but its an expensive choice and so far anything I have bought and spent money on has been damaged by small kids one way or other. SO now I limit myself to smaller items that I can still enjoy without the disappointment when it gets broken.
Now I have been visiting and collecting small things for many years and I have always assumed these things will always be there. Not local artist who I loved retired. WHAT? the nerve so the last time I stopped at his studio he was not selling. So the small things I now have will be it. No more. He carved Sumac into little creatures that were very simple but that I really liked. These are two I own.

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Another that I miss is Norman Brumm. I have several small pieces of his. Norman died in 2008 and did many wonderful things. His gallery was full of amazing things besides his own work. That's all gone now. There are places that still sell his work but its not the same.
I enjoy the shop or studio as much as seeing the things they sell. One of my favourite stores that I dare not visit often is Pier 1, if you go there you know what I mean. Its a place that is dangerous for me. I am sure a lot of people can relate to that.
Another gallery in Leland is fascinating and the sculptures are recognizable when you see them. Main Street Gallery Leland.
The sculptures are lifelike even though they are metal. No small things there.
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I would love some of the other things like the giraffes or horses, but well, I can only admire them for the beautiful work that they are.
Then there is the Twisted Fish Gallery that I wrote about on our last trip north. I often stop there just to look at the gardens. I have also bought a few things for the garden too. The art gallery inspires me and all the other lovely things.
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Well I could go on and on, we have such wonderful things here in Northern Michigan that inspires creativity. We have famous authors who live around here and of course such people as Ernest Hemingway was inspired by Northern Michigan. If I can not live in England this is the place I love to be. So much to see and do, one can never be bored. Now if only we could have shorter winters.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Some pretty things.............

Not a lot going on really. Well that's not exactly true we have been out and about, but no thrift stores. So I will be showing a few things I want to remember.
I have ordered over time several things from Craftymoose Crafts, Debbie does wonderful bead work. Can you see the little bee's and the dragonfly.?
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Flowers and ladybug on this one. I have them all around my house in plants. Also violets. Debbie does an amazing job, so delicate and detailed.
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Well, on to other things. One thing we did on our day out this weekend was to stop back at the glass blowers in East Jordan.
I bought a pumpkin. I bought one last year. I don't do Halloween but I love Harvest festival and the pumpkins remind me of that.
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Something else I bought at Ravens Hill these little glass things that I will use one way or other. So pretty. I will either wire wrap or somehow use as a pendant or on a purse. We shall see. Meanwhile they are just pretty things.
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AT the glass blowers I bought a spider. I already had one that sat on my flowers but I liked this one. People do some crazy stuff for Halloween, so it's chance to buy unusual things. I do not like spiders, but these glass ones are fascinating, I have other glass ones but this one is cool, and my lady spider too.
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Maybe these spiders will keep the real ones away?
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You know I like glass, well if we have a nice weekend next week I will be going back to a small town called Alden to a shop there, they have these little glass trays and I want to get some for gifts before the snow flys.
One day I will go around the house and show all my knick knacks that should take awhile lol.