Friday, May 26, 2017

Marietta Museum of Art and Whimsy

One week of radiation is past...Charlie is still feeling good.  They switched him to a morning appointment today.  All of the staff got a well-deserved early start to the long holiday weekend.  We went to lunch at Sunnyside Cafe, and then to the Marietta Museum of Art And Whimsy.  

I have been wanting to visit this place since before our first trip to Sarasota.  It was closed for renovations or for the off-season every other time we have been in town.  It closes tomorrow until November, so we took advantage of the longer afternoon to finally tour the museum and gardens.

I can safely say that, next to the beach, this is my favorite place in Sarasota!  There is art everywhere...the walls, the gardens, the parking lot, the restroom, the trees!

Inside, there are some lovely paintings, as well as mobiles, sculptures, and some great wooden benches and tables.

In one of inside galleries, a docent turned off the lights and turned on the laser lights.

More next time!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Getting Started

Charlie and I met with the team at Dattoli Cancer Center yesterday.  There is a whole new medication regimen.  It has not started reminds me of buying a car.  Paperwork, questions, signatures, approval.  One of the meds is a radium injection once a month at $12,000 a pop.  Yikes!  Here we go with insurance and Big Pharma dominating our lives.  Whatever it takes.

It looks like this time he will have one hour of radiation per day, starting at 1:00 PM and lasting until July 24.  Tomorrow is the "dry run" where they run the computer systems but don't actually radiate. 

Today we enjoyed a day off and went to the beach at Lido Key in Sarasota.  That was just what we needed to de-stress.  How lucky to be having cancer treatment in such a beautiful place.

We also went to Yoders, an Amish restaurant/produce market/deli not far from our rental house.  We got a chicken pie for supper, fresh corn on the cob, Honey Bell oranges, and a Key Lime Pie for dessert.  Then we walked it off at the Arlington Park nature trail right near our place.  Kasey loved seeing the dozens of squirrels, although they are brave here and actually taunted her as we walked along.

And here is a nice feature of downtown Sarasota...these little free libraries!  This one is on the street as you leave the park.

I have not been to the Sarasota Public Library yet, but plan to get my temporary library card soon.

Sunday, May 14, 2017


You have not heard from me since Easter.   Sometimes life overwhelms.

Over a period of a few weeks, we found out that my husband Charlie's cancer is no longer in remission.  This was disappointing news after the very aggressive treatment he has undergone.  The good news is that Dr. Dattoli and his team in Sarasota think they can successfully treat the new areas with seven to eight weeks of additional radiation.

We are leaving for Florida tomorrow.  This time we are renting a house close to the cancer center.  We are taking our dog.  I am taking my sewing machine and watercolors.

We are going to get through this together.

In the meantime, we have moved!  We are no longer Raleigh residents.  This is quite a change after 52 years.  Our children packed us up and moved us to our mountain cabin just last week.  The basement got finished and the new storage shed arrived just in time for the move.  

So...on to Florida after only one week of being mountain residents.  When we get back we will have lots of time to sort things out and decide where to hang quilts and pictures.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Happy Easter!

We had a very enjoyable Easter with our family this year.  After church and brunch with family on Sunday, we brought our two grandsons to the mountains with us for their Spring Break.  They have been enjoying a lot of fishing and Gator rides.

Here are some Bible journaling pages that I made for the Easter season.


Dark Skies Angel

Sell Art Online

I uploaded another angel painting today to Fine Art America.  I call this one "Dark Skies Angel."  As with all my Angel Art, I am donating all of my artist profits from the sale of this artwork to the American Cancer Society.  Did you know you can order the artwork from that site as everything from phone cases to duvet covers?  

This radiant angel represents hope and light in a time of darkness.  

May all your days be filled with hope and light!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Good Feedback on Fine Art America Products

In my last post, I mentioned that I had submitted four of my angel paintings to sell on the Fine Art America site.  Any profits sent to me will be donated to the American Cancer Society.  So far, I have sold a metallic print, a framed print, two shower curtains, and four greeting cards!  I found out that the two prints arrived in less than a week, with great packaging.  The backing and hanging systems look sturdy.

This one is a metallic print.  The buyer kindly provided photographs of the product and its packaging.

Looks like some foam padding in addition to the sturdy cardboard.

The metal print has a wooden frame and hanger on the back which looks like it is well-made.

Someone else sent me pictures of a matted and framed print.  She loved it.  The frame is metal, and everything arrived in good shape, ready to hang.

I have also sold the original painting of Ice Blue Angel to a friend of mine from high school.  Her check goes right to the American Cancer Society.  With that, some other angel art I have sold, and the Mina Project money from Hope Community Church, I was able to send $110.00 to the American Cancer Society last week.  Hope Church gave out envelopes with varying amounts of cash at a Sunday service last year.  Charlie and I both got twenty dollars.  We were to go out and try to multiply the money to meet any need of the community.  I was going to use the forty dollars for the printing, blank stationery, and clear envelopes I have purchased to sell my work outside of FAA.  But, then I decided to donate the forty dollars, too.  I was late getting going on my Mina Project, but hopefully there will be a continuing stream of funding through future sales.

I am excited to see how the Ice Blue Angel shower curtains turn out!

I have been working on some new angels to add to my "gallery" in the near future.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Selling Angel Art for American Cancer Society

Sorry for not posting recently...but I am excited to report that I have submitted four of my angel paintings to the Fine Art America website!  All proceeds from my Angel Art will be donated to the American Cancer Society.  This fine organization not only helps fund much-needed research, but also provides services such as transportation to treatment for cancer victims and their families.

Ice Blue Angel
Pastel Angel
Glowing Angel
Rainbow Angel

Many of you are aware that my husband is now a one-year survivor of metastatic prostate cancer.  Today he spent the afternoon helping me take some high-resolution photographs with his Nikon camera and a tripod.  I purchased some black velvet fabric and covered a Masonite board with it.  We set up outdoors in the sun's natural light with a tabletop easel perched on a stool.  We were ducking showers, but managed to take some good-quality photographs in direct sunlight.

The Fine Art America website lets you choose from products such as prints, (framed or unframed), notecards, greeting cards, phone cases, postcards, pouches, tote bags, towels, even shower curtains with the artwork that you select.  All of the financial transactions, printing, and shipping are provided by the company.  I have added the minimal mark-up so that any profits will go to the American Cancer Society.

In the near future I will also be adding some original Angel Art to my Easy shop...I have many small original paintings that can be framed or used on notecards.  

Thank you for your encouragement and support!

Monday, March 13, 2017

Florida Fun

We have just returned from a wonderful week on the Gulf coast of Florida.  First stop was Sarasota, where my husband Charlie had his one-year check-up at the Dattoli Cancer Center.  Scans and ultrasounds and exams showed no recurrence or new cancer!  Great news!

Then it was on to Lido Key Beach for a couple of days.  We stayed once again at the Sand Castle Resort.  It was only steps to the water from our room, and warm enough to enjoy sitting on the beach.

On Thursday, we drove down to Ft. Myers for the weekend with my brother Jeff, his wife Anna, and their son Michael who has recently graduated from Florida State.  He leaves on Thursday for a new job in Washington, DC, so we were glad for a chance to visit with him, too.

Jeff took us on a boat ride up the Caloosahatchie River in Ft. Myers, right up to the bridge we crossed every day on our trips to Sarasota for Charlie's treatment.

We saw a lot of great sunsets on this trip.  This one is from the deck behind my brother's house.

And on our last night, we sat on the causeway to Sanibel Island and watched our last Florida sunset for awhile.  

Next check-up is in September, and we hope that visit will be just as magical.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Early Spring

February brought some extremely warm temperatures this year.  Raleigh is in full bloom.  I was inspired to paint some bunnies.

The first one I call "I'm not fat, I'm fluffy!"

And for one slightly less whimsical but still colorful, how about a rainbow rabbit?  I was inspired by one I saw on Pinterest.

After several days of wearing shorts and sandals, we came up to the mountains yesterday and this morning it snowed!  Bummer!  We went to town this morning and picked out flooring and carpet for the new basement studio.  We chose a wood-look tile for the floors and a thick carpet for the stairwell.  And tomorrow our nephew is going to help us finish the basement ceiling.

This afternoon I started a new painting.  I worked from a photo of our woods, and added a nice buck. Needs some work before it"s done.

Our little granddaughter Layla turned six months old this week.  She is getting to be full of personality and LOVES attention.

On Monday we will be heading back to warm weather when we go back to Florida for my husband's one-year check-up at the cancer center.  We are planning to meet up with a friend from Raleigh who is  currently being treated at Dattoli Cancer Center, and also my husband's business partner who is vacationing in Florida next week.  Then back for a long weekend with my brother Jeff and wife Anna, who graciously hosted us during Charlie's months of radiation.  We are looking forward to a good report from the doctor, and then some good times in the sun.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

"Layla's Garden" Quilt: Done!

Layla's Garden quilt is now quilted and bound...and ready to give to our little grand baby when we get back to Raleigh!

I really had fun custom-quilting this one.  A flower meander in the center block, lots of feathers...

I added quilt art to the back with some leftover blocks.