Monday, December 28, 2009


Big Daddy and I had a lot of stops to make this year for Christmas....
We hooked up with my Uncles (far left and far right) whom I haven't seen for a loooong time. Their families were there, my Mom and Cub, my sister Jen from Georgia and her little girl and my Memere and her beau. I'm standing behind Mom (the little lady in red) and Big Daddy is kind of hiding behind me.
These were taken at my in-laws
My niece Madeline
Nephew Connor
My SIL, Bethie and myself on Christmas morning. She is always making me laugh about something. Maybe the mimosas gave us the giggles? Folks always mistaken her and I for sisters, but I fear it's only because there are times when we can really stand out in a crowd. (again, probably something to do with mimosas)
Abby and Molly
Abby has a new cousin to play with now! It's so funny, but I always feel like a teenager at Christmas! I'm tired and I feel all of my fourty years, until Christmas day at my in-laws..... then I feel like a big kid again. I think it has something to do with them, and how they are. They are so good to us!

I am off and running to swap pressies with my girlfriends this morning. Tomorrow I am meeting my sisters in Freeport. There is a new outlet mall across from LL Bean and it's screaming my name!
Christmas never ends in Maine... did you know that?

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

luv, Abby


She Dreams of Art

The Christmas edition of She Dreams of Art is up at Indie Public.
I've found a few artists that I feel takes Christmas crafts to a whole new level. They obviously create for this special season because they embrace everything beautiful and spiritual that this holiday gives to us. They also design for Christmas with a very new and modern twist, taking old ideas and making them young and fresh and oh-so-very "in".
Check out Christina's work from Harvest Textiles


I hope you all have a blissful holiday and wonderful beginning to the New Year!

Big Hugs!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

how much is that doggy in the window?

I bought Big Daddy a camera for his birthday and he's allready put it to good use!
Ummmm....yeh.....Abby does sit on the kitchen chairs. Something we would not have allowed when we had four animals, but now that it's just her, we tend to let her get away with a little more!
I am heading to Boston with a friend for the weekend. I can't wait to see Boston lit up for Christmas. It's been a lot of years since I lived near B-Town, and I am giddy with excitement to shop and eat and wear fabulous boots! LOL!
When I get back, I'll check out "Adorn Me" girls! I really want to take a class from Richard Salley, so I'll be sure to check out my options for the coming year!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

sneak peek....

Just a little sneak peek at my newest article in Belle Armoire Jewelry magazine
I am loving the "Encaustic Art-to-Wear" article and pieces by Crystal Neubauer. I've had the pleasure of working with Crystal on a project for the book A Charming Exchange. I've always adored EVERYTHING she did, but these new pieces (and the story she tells) really speak to me. BRAVO CRYSTAL!
Another technique that I really enjoyed and figured it would be fun to try on the wings of my copper insects is from an article called "Day into Night" by Barbara Lewis. She puts a new spin on enameling, and she says, it's truly "painting with fire." If you happen to try this technique, give me a shout and let me know what you thought!
And one more mention...there is a 10 page article and interview on Richard Salley. The photographers of Belle Armoire captured his intricate and stunning designs beautifully. It's my dream to beable to take a class from him one day, and trust me, I will.....
Belle Armoire Jewelry hits news stands Dec. 1rst.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

for the holidays....

Just gearing up for a little holiday majic!
These two pieces were featured in last winter's Belle Armoire Jewlery magazine in my article, "Christmas Pendants".
Christmas at The Cottage
Speaking of Belle Armoire, I just got my early copy of this winter's newest addition .... all I can say is WOW! Tons of talented artists and beautiful projects .... I can't wait to dig in!

Monday, November 9, 2009

All for a good cause.....

The Etsy Maine Team strikes again!
will participate.
To see the entire list of partcipating shops
(and there's a bunch)
head over to the Maine Team blog.
Find out more about Preble Street and visit their site.
I plan on uploading some new pieces and vintage items into both shops before the 13th.
AND I'd like to entice you a bit more!
If you purchase items from either of my shops, in the "NOTE TO SELLER" section just mention PREBLE STREET and you will automatically be entered into a drawing to win any one piece of jewelry of your choice at Junque Revival.
Remember this from 11/13 - 11/19

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Little Wonders

The newest article is up and called "Totally Stuffed With Love!"
"I was curious to hear from the makers of these little majical creatures, who are so filled with love and wonder. Were they as whimsical as their storybook creations? But of course! Just as I imagined these talented artists find inspiration from their youth, surroundings and their own children."

Split Pea - The Sleepy Fox

I hope you'll swing by Indie Public and leave us a comment!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Under The Moonlight

Sebastian came across her in the night along the riverbank under the moonlight. He was a painter, a well known one in fact as he had been commissioned several times by the King. He often walked to the river in the middle of the night to clear his head. This night he saw a beautiful maiden staring at the moon with a look of pure anguish. She was not frightened by him, and when he asked about her heavy sadness, she explained that she was tormented by nightmares at night and ghoulish day-dreams each day. Sebastian tried to comfort her with useless words, but he instinctively knew that her soul was allready lost. After they parted he could not get the image of her out of his mind, and spent three days and nights painting miniature paintings of her in the same pose, as he had seen her on the bank that night. He confusedly tried to erase the anguished look in her eyes each time he painted her. When he felt he succeeded, he begged off a favor from the local jewlerysmith and had a necklace made with her tiny portrait in the center of the pendant. He went back to the river, treasure in hand. He wanted to show her what her lovely face could look like without sadness. When he arrived to the river, he found another beautiful lady weeping. It was her sister! She explained that her sister had taken her life, here, in the dark swirling waters, as her maladies had been too much to bare in this life. Sebastian took the sister's hand and gently placed the jewel in her palm.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Abby's first hike

I've been working with Abby to walk on her leash in our back fields. Monday we put her to the test and took her to Damariscotta for her first official "hike". After stopping to smell everything in sight, she finally got her rhythm and we were crusing along the trails.
I haven't spoken much of this, but we have lost the last of our "old" four-legged family. A few weeks back our beautiful Bella kitty was hit by a car. I couldn't even say it out loud, let alone write it here. Then we had to say goodbye to our old Weezie cat. In July our 14 year old yellow lab, Rudy was ready to go. Last summer, we had to let our 14 year old Dakaota (dog) go. The three oldest animals lived a long and happy life here at The Plenty To Do Farm. Losing Bella to the road was a horrible shock though.
Now it's just Abigail, me and Big Daddy. I think that's the way we'll keep it for now. Perhaps you can see in her eyes that she is Princess of this castle? LOL!
She has breathed new life into our everyday lives. It is funny, you do not realize how heavy your everyday life feels like when you are living with animals that you know will be ready to leave this world soon. It was almost like being depressed but not really knowing it.
Abby makes us laugh everyday (several times a day)! This morning she discovered what frost feels like. From the slippery deck to the cold and crunchy grass under her toes, everything is new and different. She makes me feel inspired.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Flowers Fit For a Fairy

"Wild Rose" now in the shop!
I created these flowers for my article "Flowers Fit For a Fairy" for Belle Armoire Jewelry's 2009 Fall issue. Each flower was created from polymer clay and handpainted with many layers of paints and glazes to give them a vintage-shabby feel.

Monday, October 5, 2009

The Owl Who Knew Too Much

A tale of an owl
There was a church with a very old bell tower that sat on top of a hill in a small village in Maine. From the church you could see the village on one side and the ocean below on another. In back of the church there stood a small stand of trees where an owl lived. The owl would sit for hours on top of the bell tower to hunt for small moles and other delictable treats. The villagers felt very superstitous about this old owl. They knew he knew their secrets, because for many years they felt he was listening in on their most private confessions. To appease the owl each villager commissioned the local Metalsmith to make them a doorknocker in the shape of an owl. They felt their secrets would be safe with the owl if they showed him the respect he deserved. The Metalsmith and his family became so well known in the area for their owl doorknockers, he created this necklace for his daughter and wife to wear.

NEW She Dreams of Art

When I picked my four featured artists this month I began to look at "Halloween" differently. It is not a stereotype and certainly not just another holiday. Each artist expresses their love for the entire season and not just the day. Through talent and artistic expression, they show us how to look at the season in different ways. A jack-o-lantern created from felt and found-objects can be beautiful and full of mystique, there is humor in the devlish mayhems of a man in black, and there can be love and respect in even the seemingly frightening Spirit-World. This is just a sneak peek of this month's She Dreams of Art. Swing by Indie Public and check out the four fabulous artists I have featured this month!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

hey you witchy women.....

For the witching hour.....
I've never really made things for Halloween... I definetley do pieces with a strong Autumn feel this time of year. Halloween always sneaks up on me and I think, "I should have done this or that". This year I was inspired by some of the Etsy Maine Team members who are having a special scavenger hunt. I didn't participate (again the time thing)..... but couldn't help creating something due to their enthusiasm!

Here is the link to the Scavenger Hunt thread!

HAVE FUN and go win some beautiful prizes!!

Monday, September 28, 2009

More Vintage Junque Revival.......

Yep....I've been my usual busy-self!
We decided to stay home this weekend and get things DONE!
I finished 5 pieces to send off for magazine submissions and I'm currently working on a few NEW pieces of jewlery for the shop. (finally)
I'm still slowly cleaning the second floor of the barn. I haul a box down and make three piles.
I have to say I'm rather proud, I've barely kept a thing unless I can make something with it!
Here are just a few of the goodies I've put on Vintage Junque Revival.

Hope you're enjoying the fabulous fall weather!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Alaska: HOMER

I've been neglectful in my postings about Alaska, but I have a friend (HI SHELLEY) that is looking to go there one day, and I know she wants to see and hear more about it.

After two days in Seward we trekked on over to Homer for three days. We stayed at the Driftwood Inn overlooking the beach. The Inn was a great place to stay as we had a livingroom with a pull-out couch, a bedroom and a kitchen. We also had a shared deck with chairs, tables and a grill. We met some great people on the deck for happy hour. The only issue was that some people kept partying on that deck while others of us wanted to sleep. Poor Jason caught the flu and had to stay in bed for one day. Jon got his first bit of fishing in, and Elana and I took the "Discovery" to Seldovia for an afternoon.

The Homer Spit

The beach at Homer


Views from "The Discovery"

Me and Elana
From here, Jason and Elana headed home and Jon and I decided to just go with the flow and explore. We ended up in the cool little town of Hope. More on that next time.....

Thursday, September 10, 2009

puppies & babies..... OH MY!

So two (well now three) of our dearest friend came to visit from NYC this weekend. I met Dawn on line back in 2004 through blogging and she has been one of my sweetest gal pals ever since. We've all hooked up as couples in the past several years and it's now tradition that they come to Maine once a year. This year they brought their newest addition, Leo!
Pemaquid Point, Maine
I think this photo sums up the weekend!
Abigail thought Leo would make a great playmate......

I took some photos of Abby yesterday, I can't believe how much she has grown in three weeks!
This weekend we are throwing a b-day party for Jon's Dad. After this weekend, I can get back into that lonely little studio of mine. Just one more weekend of making food and socializing, then its back to work! The season is so short in Maine, we seem to cram it all in, but you've got to grab it when you can!

My SIL Beth made this great e-vite for the party!


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Art Through the Lens

For this month's "She Dreams of Art", I have featured four wonderful photographers, Tracy Milchick, Tali Schiffer, Laura Evans & Nicole Castille.

Photo by Tali Schiffer

You can read more about these talented ladies, find links to their shops, blogs and websites over at Indie Public.
If you swing over, please comment and let us know how you like the article at Indie Public! This will keep the article at the top of the front page of Indie Public.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

nice folk

I am so pleased to mention a lovely article written about me by the wonderful Chris Burgess! Chris is a super-talented mosaic artist who I interviewed for an article, "The Art of Mosaic" over at Indie Public. It was such a treat to be asked thoughtful questions!

And don't forget to pick up the newest issue of Belle Armoire Jewelry magazine!

It's FULL of inspirational jewelry projects & you can find my newest article "Polymer Flowers" there!

Saturday, August 29, 2009


So busy these days. Since the new puppy arrived we have company 1-2 times a day. Not that I'm complaining, I love that my friends and family are so into our new baby.....really! Since our trip to Alaska, we have been away twice and have had lots of weekend company (with more to come through September) I am desperately trying to squeeze in work, but even with me cutting my work schedule down to just two nights a week, it still doesn't seem like enough.
Unfortunately I have not been in the studio. My sketchpad is full of new ideas, and I'd love to get back at it. It almost feels like I've taken an extended vacation as far as the jewels go, but I have been spending time writing and working on Vintage Junque Revival.
I woke up at 4:00 this morning, to try and get some computer work done. It's supposed to be rainy, and I hate to admit it, I'm kind of glad. Big Daddy and I are going to do inside chores, then maybe I'll find time to play in the studio!
I've been all about cleaning and destashing this house. Just too much about. As we get older, do we crave more order, function and organization? (not that I think 40 is old mind you) But I do find my creativity flows better when things are (somewhat in order). We wont talk about the bedroom and my upstairs studio that I'll have to move back into in another month when it get's cold!
Anyhoo, I'm almost uploading items daily to the shop, and it feels good to think that some of these goodies will find new appreciation.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

aint she sweet?

Our new family member!
Abigail (AKA Abbey)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

ALASKA: Seward

I can't believe it has been over a month since my last post! Where does the time go?
Since our trip to Alaska, we have had company, been to the lake at a camp a friend rented, and now we are off again this weekend to another friend's camp! I figured I better squeeze in my first post about Alaska!
I've decided to post in little installments, so as not to overwhelm you all!
We started the trip at our friend's, Jason and Elana in Wasilla. There we rented our vehicle, shopped for supplies, etc. I really didn't start taking photos until the four of us drove to Seward. It was rainy those first couple of days, but we were used to it, as that's all we've had had here in Maine anyway!
I did find a really cool (wonderfully priced) bead shop in Wasilla. I am excited to get back in the studio and play with my new collection of beads.

The four of us stayed at this sweet little Victorian hotel in downtown Seward. Our two bedroom was quaint and cozy.
Jon and I took a rainy stroll all around Seward that morning. Wild rabbits (who weren't so wild) greeted us. Jon actually fed one from his hand.

The ravens reminded me of seagulls. They weren't skittish like they are here. They hang around the campgrounds and touristy places looking for handouts.

I found not only good coffee, but great art in this groovy coffee shop. I would love to own something like this one day! It was filled with jewelry, paintings, fiber art and pottery from various local artists.

The town was filled with huge artist's murals!

Big Daddy and I walked around the marinas looking at boats and chatting it up with some local fishermen. We found one guy a little grumpy, and a bit full of himself. He was letting us know that Pacific working boats kick Atlantic working boats asses! He did not know that Big Daddy used to work on these boats, and has a clue. To him, I'm sure we were the annoying tourists. To me, he was an annoying a-hole!
since we are boat lovers, we really did have a good time checking out the difference in these boats compared to our Maine lobster boats. Since it was rainy, we decided to go to the Alaska Sea Life Center. It was a pretty quick trip around the Center, but I was able to get some fun shots, and pick up a few treasures for the nieces and nephews there.

I want to mention two really great eateries in Seward. The four of us had a wonderful dinner at Ray's Waterfront
where we could boat watch. If it hadn't been raining, we would have enjoyed spectacular views as well. The food and service made us forget that it was a rainy evening. Elana and I ordered a bottle of "Wild Horse" chard; fresh halibut, baked and topped with a delish sauce and crab. We also ordered king crab legs to share. Jon had the HUGE fried fishermen's platter, and Jason had prime rib that looked so good, I wanted to reach over and steal a piece. We took back to the room a big piece of key lime pie. It really was perhaps one of the best meals AND service we had the whole trip!
Jon and I went to breakfast at a new place called AK. Nellies. It was named after one of the many famous pioneering women of Alaska, Nelly Neil Lawning. (1873-1956) To find out her story, just google her. The breakfast was hearty and oh-so-tasty, and the owners are super-sweet!
I am very behind in some of my writing projects, and as soon as I finish those up, I'll be back in the studio creating! Today I am sending off an article for Belle Armoire Jewelry Magazine's winter issue. I believe the Fall issue comes out Sept. 1rst, and I think some of you will really like my article, "Polymer Flowers". They are a bit challenging, but once you get the hang of it, they are GREAT FUN! As always, once the article comes out, feel free to email me with questions. (Cindy you are in my mind here, I know you are going to want to try these!!!)
Until the next time....
peace out!