Friday, April 30, 2010

Too soon to blog about this but it's on my mind

Caleb, I know that you were supposed to go to the Jesse Colin Young concert tonight with our dearest old friends from high school. I was sorry that I couldn't be there to join you.
Now I hear that you can't be there either, that you passed away on Tuesday.
Thanks for being my very first boyfriend and that we kept our friendship till the end (despite my fickleness, dumping you at 16) And thanks for making it to the wedding in Alaska. It meant so much to me. Give my love to Beans wherever you guys travel from here.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Candace Goes to Boston

Candace is excited to go on a train but gets a bit TOO enthusiastic.
Don't walk on the rails, Candace!

Candace at the historical North Church in Boston by the infamous "Two if by land, One if by sea" window.

Candace, once again showing her trashy side.

In the company of some really fast runner women getting ready for the Boston Marathon.

With her Auntie Betsy at the finish line. Betsy finished the marathon!

Getting her beauty sleep with Auntie Betsy.

Hanging out in a REALLY OLD graveyard.

Candace took a plane trip to Boston with her Auntie Betsy and Uncle Matt to watch Betsy run the Boston Marathon. My excuse that my sister runs marathons and I don't is that SHE IS SEVEN YEARS YOUNGER THAN ME!. (so there!) I'm pretty proud of her actually.
I agreed that she could go on another adventure with them as long as they kept her out of harms way. She does seem to have some narrow brushes with danger with them.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Adios to Our Arizona Home

Bottles with a dichroic like patina from being buried for 100 years.
A few were found in our town yard and others picked up at our favorite junking shops in St. David

Photos, old and new.

Every house needs a Burmese "nat" and carved root snake.
The train photo was found inside my 1800's desk from a garage sale.

My husband's dresser. Alaskan birch basket, more bottles and Lea & Perrins bottle stoppers.

Rocks, always rocks.

A cookie cutter window view.

The wooden pieces- A piloncillo sugar mold and cobblers shoe form.

Time to pack up and say goodbye to our Arizona abode. We'll be spending the next 7 months back in Alaska to our other home thankfully flying rather than driving that cross continental trip.

My husband will be going back to his seasonal archaeology job and I will return to my other studio in the "Garaj Mahal" to revisit other art supply stashes and enjoy our spectacular Alaskan summer of endless light. This is when I actually have to go back to work in a manner of speaking with a farmers market and some shows along with keeping the summer galleries stocked up with inventory.

In the two winter seasons we've lived in our snowbird abode in Arizona we've already accumulated quite a collection of goodies of all sorts to display in our home. We're both collectors so our home certainly reflects that aspect of us.

Goodbye Arizona until next winter!

Candace Goes To A Virtual Birthday Party!

Some surprising things are happening. I'm finding that Candace is able to do more than physically travel around the world. As far as I know she was coming back from Boston and heading to Toronto and I find that she attended a virtual birthday party for Kass from "The K is No Longer Silent" and "Redoing the Undone" hosted by her friend LimesNow from "Ramblings from Yet Another Stranger On the Bus."
Both of these gals will be receiving Candace later on, we can't yet predict when. They're mighty anxious to host her arrival so in the virtual world it is possible to take matters into you own hands!

Friday, April 23, 2010

The Mexican Pottery Village of Mata Ortiz

Isidro Ortiz decorating one of his amazing pots.

The finished product. One of these belongs to me now!

We were graciously invited into homes to view and purchase pottery
These are signed simply "Elda"

Pottery was displayed wherever there was room in the homes.

The proud artist- Diana Loya

People would find you on the street and unwrap their wares.

Some scenes from the village

A beautiful rural mountain setting.

I love contrasts.

These handsome gents were chilling by the bridge which opened up to a spectacular walk for our group.

One of the blessings of our Arizona abode is the proximity to any number of wonderful destinations, whether by plane or road.

I've lived in Alaska for over 30 years and it's no small feat to hop in the car and get yourself to an exotic location. Not to say that Alaska isn't exotic in itself but we only have a few highways going across that vast state and there are plenty of driving concerns part of the year with darkness, subzero temps and icy conditions. (although we are known to take a road trip at the drop of a hat to hit a good hot springs on a frosty day)
We have to drive through Canada just to get to the rest of the states and that takes a couple of days of marathon driving. That being said it is pure delight to be able to drive to the pottery village of Mata Ortiz in just four hours from our Arizona home.

We had a group of folks piled into our friend Julio's Subaru (he's Italian from Brooklyn despite his Spanish sounding name) We did have our Spanish speaking friend Patricia with us that helped in translation at the checkpoints. We brought along another Alaskan snowbird type for the ride. Armed with our free weeklong visas, plenty of water and a few dineros for pots and lodging for our overnight trip, we hit the road.

We stopped in the town of Casas Grandes to meet the original promoter of the Mata Ortiz tradition of pottery making, Spencer McCallum. You can read the story of the beginnings of the new tradition of Mata Ortiz Pottery making here. He gave us a tour of the new church in town with it's spectacular murals. I'll save those photos for another post. We went to the museum of Central Cultural Paquime that had the Paquime archaeological ruins that are over 1300 years old and examples of the ancient original pottery from the area.

The village of Mata Ortiz is a short drive from the the town of Casas Grandes. There's only one lodge in the village that includes three meals in the price. We didn't notice any other restaurants in town so I think that was our only option unless we wanted to stay in Casas Grandes.

The folks of the village immediately set up their displays outside the lodge upon our arrival.
Word gets out fast as we were the only outside visitors to the town that day. Between the economy woes and fear of travel to Mexico, business has come to a crushing halt for this village that relies almost solely on their pottery business to survive.

We did our best to inject our dollars and pump up the local economy for the short time we were there. Julio broke the record with the grande total of 26 pots, we came in second with 16 not counting the little bitty ones we hope to bring back to share with Alaskans. With two weddings and two birthdays coming up we are armed for some gift-giving.

It was overwhelming to say the least when there were so many artists to choose from and so many styles, we tried to spread our purchases around but we had to overlook so many spectacular pots and had packing and baggage and space issues to consider once we got home.

I have to say that the people were mellow and gracious in what had to be an extremely competitive environment with artists that are desperate for some cash just to exist.

The village itself was in a stunning location almost a mile high ringed by mountains. We Alaskans remarked how similar it felt to an Alaskan Native village in climate and surroundings, much like Fort Yukon or Galena without the huge river running through. We walked freely through the village snapping photos with a few folks catching up to us in their vehicles hoping to show their wares.

Thursday, April 22, 2010


Here is my painful handwriting post which was the idea from the blog DogDaisyChains.
I rather liked the exercise but I'm not so proud of the penmanship!

Click on the text to be able to read it.
(good luck with that!)
I wish that that my handwriting was better for art journaling now.

Monday, April 19, 2010

A Day of Desert Blooming at Javelina Road

I always love this lone tree out by our property.

Ocotillos reaching skyward with new growth.

Their blooms are like flames.

Puff ball flowers, I don't know their name.

Desert poppies in splashes of color.

These smelled heavenly nestled in the rocks.

Wildflowers cropping up in bunches.

Paddle cactus with interesting spots.

A walk around our remote property on a day of desert blooming.


I've tried my hand at inchies for the first time. Some of you may be familiar with Artist Trading Cards which have have to be creations with the measurements of 3.5 inches by 2.5 inches and have the one requirement that they be somewhat flat for ease of collecting.

Lately I've been introduced to "Inchies" which have the requirement of measuring a wee 1 inch square.

This sounded like a fun and possibly another addicting exercise that I decided to try a few days ago.

Quite a few of them I wrapped in snippets of nylon stockings to mute and contain the contents.