Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sunday shelf - "smoothie"

photo from NY Times
On my Sunday shelf today, are all the ingredients to make this lovely frothy smoothie.
1 cup of fresh strawberries (cleaned and hulled)
1/2 banana  (you can freeze bananas wrapped in plastic)
t tsp. honey
one cup water
1/2 cup of ice
(protein powder of choice)
fresh mint (if you like)

Mix in a blender and drink, pour in a pretty glass and sip.  There is enough for two glasses. Treat yourself to one of these and have a smooth Sunday!  

Saturday, May 30, 2009

to share

Sarah S. Stilwel illustrated this delightful girl with bunches of grapes.
She has a look of "Would you care for a grape?"  I adore her white dress with low slung belt.
My Mother graciously taught us of the importance "to share."  "The more you share, the more comes back to you."

These lovely girls donning large floppy bows are out picking flowers for a bouquet.
They look as if they are sharing silently with nature.  I am enamored with the sweet faces amidst all those delightful blooms.

Take time to share with someone today.   
Share a wish with this fine lady as today is a special celebration.
Happy Weekend to each of you.

Friday, May 29, 2009

house tour

This time of year many homes open their doors for house tours.
Eddie Ross posted this charming home and I just had to illustrate it.
Just look at these window-boxes and tulips!

If your house were part of a tour, what would you do first to get ready?

Thursday, May 28, 2009


wikipedia - allium, Lucy Ball
Something about seeing alliums makes me giggle.  
I wonder if they might have been the inspiration for a cheerleader's pom-pon?
This one is called "Lucy Ball" and if you look closely, you will see a bee having a ball.

pve design for "purple flowers"
This was another design for purple flowers.  I had so many responses to the purple alliums that I had posted earlier this week.  I had a bit of help with adding the text from someone who also makes me smile!  I quite like the range of sizes.  Love your thoughts.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

pergola perfection

A pergola in the garden to take cover and to admire the shadow of dancing patterns. 
This is one of my favorite spots.  Only a short drive to this enchanted garden and I am immediately transported to a far away place.
Tranquility ripples all around me.  Lovely lilies lure me with their aquatic display.
Does it not look as if they are twirling?
Perennial beds lay beside lush blankets of fresh blades of green grass.

I am not the only one trying to capture the beauty of nature.
This artist said, "oh, not good" as I admired her painting.  I praised her for being there, painting.  We all need a bit of encouragement every now and then.

A visit to a place that gives me such wonder, such approval to take time, to look around me, to appreciate nature.  I leave with ideas for cultivating a garden, building a pergola or just taking time to visit a place to take cover and inspire my mission to design an artful life.
Are you on a mission to design an artful life?  What inspires you lately?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

purple flowers

Lately, I find myself admiring so many purple flowers.
Inspiration comes in many forms, just in time for this new blog header here.  
When I begin a project, the client sends me snippets to work from, be it a house sketch, a pet portrait, a party, a wedding, or something that they feel will emulate and represent their blog.  
Along the way, while I am working, my eyes seem to be drawn to so many purple flowers.
Why did I not see them before?
I love the way my work gives me time to appreciate beauty and to give others a bit of it in the form of my artwork.  Today, I will give thanks for purple flowers!

Once more

My sister has been working on a series, called "Once again" with feeling she paints peonies and tries to capture the fleeting beauty of the blossoms.  Here, I have the impression that the petals are just about to drop.  I think the looseness of the stroke of the brush gives this work brevity of life.  
Happy Tuesday.

Monday, May 25, 2009

The Picnic to remember

le dejeuner sur l'herbes - Manet 1862 -Wikipedia
Memorial Day, a day for parades and picnics to remember and honor many.
One of my favorite paintings "The Picnic" painted by Manet.  
May your Memorial Day be pleasant and one to remember.
How will you remember those who served, with a parade or a picnic?

Sunday, May 24, 2009


There is something about a path that causes one to reflect whilst looking ahead.
This path found me, on a walk with a friend.  The sounds of nature, the stillness of our thoughts captured  our artist eyes and left us speechless.  Nothing to do but proceed ahead.

When did you realize that you were on the path of your dreams as an artist and creator?
Finding our path and realizing our path makes the journey more fun.  Are you lost and do you need a pathfinder to realize your dreams?

Saturday, May 23, 2009

in the palmettos

Housework???? Not for me!!
Sitting in the palm of someone's hand, my dear friend Elizabeth Belliveau photographed me at Wave Hill and sent this to me.  (She is the famous fine artist, who photographed me at the easel!)  Her site is due to launch any day and I can hardly wait!  Just for fun, she added in the robin's egg blue, "No Housework?Not for me!  A day for no housework and a day to treat oneself to a seat in the midst of lovely palms, and water lilies, now if only I could get someone to peel me a grape, and palm me with a palm frond!  Take time to spoil yourself and laugh this weekend!  
While on the grounds of Wave Hill, Elizabeth picked up half of a robin's egg blue and said, "True perfection, found in nature."

Friday, May 22, 2009

room with a view

a friend's front porch, overlooking the Long Island Sound
I stop to enjoy the view, breathe a little deeper and know beauty is where you find it.

Golden sunsets beg for a little attention.
I wish each of you a special weekend with sunsets, sunrises, pink skies, a bit of sand, the warmth of the sun and a view to open your eyes to outdoor rooms with views.
Happy Memorial Day weekend!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

get it

Embrace your inner "get it girl style" and the choices that make you unique.
Meet "Tamstyle" over here.  She is sitting pretty on her newly covered settee, "Sophie!"
It was in the family and she had it restored and renewed.

Just look at her fun yellow cardi and shoes.  

She is a ray of sunshine to the blog world and to her family.

This is one of my favorite photos, "Oh the paparazzi!"
She has such "got it going on!"  

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

house of pve

Rendering of my home, by Michelle, of  A Schematic Life
Welcome to the "house of pve" - as beautifully rendered by Michelle, of Schematic Life.
She captured my home so wonderfully.  She has a way with markers and interiors as well as exteriors - drawing what she sees.  Take time to see her stunning work.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


A "what-not" shelf in my bathroom is home to an a collection of fragrances and snippets of things brought home from a place and a time.  The framed "dunes" scene was bought on Summer vacation on Block Island by the artist Connie Fiedler and the little boy fountain brought back from Brussels.  I love sitting paintings on shelves and an array of  bottles.

Do you have a what-not shelf in your home and what trifles stand on display?

Monday, May 18, 2009

monday, monday

binder from simplify 101
Monday is the start of the week in my home.  I turn to my handy dandy binder which is kept in a spot on my counter.  My daughter loves this book, home to class lists, school permission slips, and more.  My fave are the Menu planning sheets (courtesy of heart-of-light) which help me to plan my weekly menu.  It is fun to look forward to "what we shall eat" for the week ahead.  I save recipes in a file for future ideas for the weeks ahead.  When you plan, you are better equipped to stick to a budget.  I also love stocking the pantry with staples, should the best laid menu plans fail. Shopping seasonally and stocking the pantry with staples is key.
I am especially excited since last week I was waiting for the arrival of a new fridge!
meal planning sheets, click to enlarge and print, cut in half, thanks to heart-of-light
In my quest or desire to feed my organizational lust, I happened to find this wonderful site here.  There are simply super tips to motivate one to organize.  I love the Russel and Hazel binders, notes and other aesthetically pleasing items for storage.
We could all benefit from a bowl of simplicity and a few minutes for noting some time management tips which I gleamed from simplify101;

1.  Prioritize, "eat your veggies first" - then dessert.   Do the highest priority first.
2.  Say NO, for everything you say YES to, you are saying NO to something else.
3.  Balance, strive for a balance.  It is like going to a "buffet" and eating too much of everything and walking away not feeling great.  Feel good with less, limit the choices and you will find balance.
4.  Pick & choose!  Life is all about choice.  Make a list first thing to begin your day.
5.  Order gives light and energy.  

an ordered drawer of candles and matches - image from chez larsson
Learning to plan ahead for a rainy day, or a day without power provides energy and a source of light and contentment for any day of the week.  How do you plan ahead to simplify - so you can enjoy your week?  What would you say needs the most attention today, what is on your list in order of "highest priority?" Happy Monday, Monday!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

dancing with the stars

My girl loves dance class.  She loves the floor exercises.

She really likes to jump, and pretend she can even fly.

Most of all she loves to perform.  
Deep down, she loves to dance and act.
Today is her dance recital, on stage.   Dancing with the stars or "so ya think you can dance"
are shows she loves to watch and copy dance moves.  ( she just said, "no i don't!)  OK. Right.
Anybody that knows her, knows this to be true, any opportunity to dance, perform, sing, play her flute....she jumps at it!
What do you love to do?  Do you take any dance classes?
Do you ever bust a move, and dance under the stars?

Saturday, May 16, 2009


Gouache is an opaque paint that is mixed with water to achieve a vibrant and happy work of art.  Normally I work in water-color washed over a micron pen, but sometimes to achieve the saturation of color, I use gouache.  I also just like saying the work "gouache."  One can find it available in tubes or in a cake palette.  The paper needs to be a heavier paper in order to hold the paint.  I enjoy answering any questions that you might have if you feel inspired to paint! 

Friday, May 15, 2009

lucky red

A lucky red watering can to shower red strawberries.

Lucky red doors for a wedding with red flowers, red lips, and red sling-backs.
Red rose petals strewn down the aisle.
Whenever I spot a red truck, I think of a dear blog buddy who has a dream of having a lucky red truck to shower goodies all about.
"Special delivery" for me!  If you know this gifted person, she has a way of spreading goodness. It sure would be fun to have a lucky red truck - to deliver gifts!

photo from "A Gift Wrapped Life" - love this wrapping!
Just knowing that there was something being delivered to someone to make their day special.
I picture the gifts being wrapped, a little red gingham, a touch of red, a vintage rose, a butterfly or a red cardinal.
Can you guess who that blogger might be?  Let's see how well you know our blog buddies.  
First one to guess wins a box of red goodies!

(Winner of last week's fab friday, the 622 press - letter press  was random number "21"- Chloedezigns - please e-mail me your address to send your winning!)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

smiling places

Do you have a favorite landmark building, or site that you love to go to, it could be a shop or a quaint spot to go to that might need a sketch.  Take a look at this site with a new launch. Click around and see my illustrations sprinkled about. 
 The bulk of those illustrations were done over many years as stores opened.  I take great delight in knowing that my work has longevity and continues to smile on.  
My illustration and design services are available for commissions.  Let me know if you are a small business or a home in need of commemorating?  Times may pose challenges, but we all need to look for happy smiling places.

Nothing like a little shameless self promotion to spread a little cheer!

playing footsie

There is a direct correlation between playing footsie which goes straight to the heart of one's soul.  By now everybody is a friend of Toms Shoes, right?  What could be better than buying a pair of shoes knowing that there are "tootsies", getting a pair on me. 

(For each pair purchased, TOMS donates a pair to a child in need.)   Toms began in 2006.
Just look how happy this child is with new striped shoes! :)

I have been known to fall head over heels for plaid!   I have a white linen dress and a sweet head scarf, now these little lovelies would be perfect for a picnic or an "amble" into town.

Now we are talking, smooth suede, in a lovely tangerine sweet with jeans and tees.
Do you know Tom, have you ever played footsie with these shoes?  C'mon fess up and tell us what shoes are playing with you and your tootsies?