Proud to be a Liebster Award Nominee!!

YOWSA! I have been nominated for a Liebster Award!

I’m really enjoying sharing my crafts here and reading all of your new blogs that I discover every day. You are all so inspirational and creative!! So let’s get to my duties as a new Liebster nominee!

#1: Give Thanks!

Liebster Award: Online recognition from fellow bloggers for fun new blogs.
Liebster Award: Online recognition from fellow bloggers for fun new blogs.

THANK YOU Hooked for the nomination! Please take a moment and check out her amazing blog: go for the delicious eye candy pictures of all things yarny…stay for the inspiration and free patterns! (Plus she has a facebook page – so much family fun and crafty goodness!) Thanks for this opportunity to recognize other cool bloggers like you…and to bare my soul to the internet (we’re all friends here, right? 🙂 )

#2: Spread the Love!

Now I get to nominate five of my favorite bloggers (besides Hooked, of course!). Please click through on these fantastic sites and let them know how much we appreciate their blogs…I start my mornings with their humor, art, travel and life stories.

Leaf and Twig – I appreciate this blogger’s photographic ability to capture both the spirit of her subject and her own experience of viewing it. And the poetry…sublime!

Sleepy Kitty Stitches – I love checking in on what this blogger is stitching up (such fine detailed work!) and her DIY instructions are very helpful!

Little Rivers – I enjoy following this blogger’s progress through a cool creative design university class she is documenting. Her photography is stunning and it’s fun to see the creative processes she is experiencing.

The Crafty Mummy – This blogger is SOOOO creative and shares detailed pics and patterns for every step. I instantly want to make 12 of everything I see on her site!

ChiliSarang – I love seeing this blogger’s posts to photography challenges and her travel advice is detailed and so interesting (makes me want to go to those places!).

#3 – Tell Us a Little About Yourself

Here are the questions my nominator asked me to answer…

1.What is your favourite colour? 


2.What was the name of your first pet?

Jason (a miniature Schnauzer)

3.If you could marry any film star who would it be?

Liam Neeson

4.If you could be any animal what would you be and why?

A hummingbird, because I want to be able to fly and I like they way they do that (flying sideways and swooping high/low looks like a lot of fun!)

5.What would your dream job be (doesn’t have to be realistic)?

I would like to design outdoor art installations involving landscaping and plants.

6.If you could name yourself, what name would you give yourself?

Rosalee…no Anna…can I change it every day?

7.What is your favourite pudding?

Bread pudding

8.What is your favourite flower?

(today it’s) Freesia
(bonus: tomorrow it will be Gazania)

9.What hobbies do you have (or did have as a child)?

as a child: Reading, sewing, collecting…stamps, spoons, dolls, pill bugs (aka ‘rolie-polies’) and army worms (eww!!)

10. What is your favourite toast topping?

(Forget what you just read and think about yummy food now…)
I like peanut butter, apple and a drizzle of honey on my toast.

11. If you could meet anyone who had lived ever, who would it be?

Sacajawea – smart as a whip and oh the stories!!


That was fun! Thanks for asking and thanks for listening!

#4 That Wasn’t Enough – Tell Us a Little More About Yourself

Phew! this feels like a lot of thinking about myself…kind of like therapy…

Here are 11 random facts about me:

  1. I have completed over 20 sky dives, and I packed parachutes and manifested loads to pay my way.
  2. I worked a fishing season in Petersburg, Alaska, fresh/frozen side during the day and cannery at night.
  3. I know all the words to “Twas the Night Before Christmas.”
  4. I’ve worked at the same company for over 20 years.
  5. I can type 100 words per minute.
  6. I used to work at an answering service.
  7. My first job at age 14 was dog washer.
  8. I wore braces (on my teeth) for 6 years.
  9. When I’m waiting for a plane at the airport I like to listen to music and pretend I’m in my own music video.
  10. When visiting the Redwood forest, my mom and I drove our car into the tree with a tunnel for a photo op – then realized we couldn’t open the doors of the car (reverse, I hop out, forward, I run around: photo op ready!).
  11. I had the following pets as a child (not all at the same time): dog, hamster, duck, goose, rabbit, fish, salamander. (Bonus: I recommend a guinea pig as a starter pet for kids over 6 or 7 years old – manageable and they hardly ever escape and hide behind the refrigerator to scare the bejeebies out of you.)


That was a fun walk down Random Lane for me – hope you had fun too.

#5 – My Questions for My Nominees

Here’s what I’m hoping my nominees will share with us in their “acceptance speech.”

  1. What is your favorite drink on a hot day vs. a cold day?
  2. Where would you say is the most beautiful place you’ve been so far?
  3. What is your favorite spice (or condiment) that you use most often?
  4. What is your favorite pizza topping?
  5. Did you teach yourself the skills you highlight in your blog, or were they handed down and/or taught?
  6. What is the best movie you’ve seen recently?
  7. What is the best book you’ve read recently (you don’t have to be done with it yet)?
  8. Do you enjoy answering surveys? (an easy “yes/no” as a breather…)
  9. Describe what you see outside the nearest window right now (hopefully there isn’t a lot of travel involved in answering this one).
  10. What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?
  11. What’s your favorite museum?

Another Phew! I went for “interested without being invasive or obtuse…,” hopefully I landed somewhere close to the target drop zone.

#6 Logo Time!

The last requirement is to post a Liebster image, and I chose the ‘Celebratory Chic-ster’ version:


That was pretty fun, and I hope my nominees take a moment to share some version of this beeswax with the rest of us enquiring minds (I think it’s obvious: I’m brazenly looking for my next favorite libation, movie, book, spice/condiment, museum, etc. – share your knowledge!).

Sending extra love to everyone reading this – we all need a hug today and every day.

Now off to today’s crafting!!


Overflowing with Art

Hello World! I’m back from a week long art retreat in Portland, Oregon called Art and Soul Retreat. SO.VERY.ENGERGIZING.AND.INSPIRING. If you find yourself near any of their upcoming locations I encourage you to check it out: authentic artists, inspiring teachers, sharing participants. I could go on and on…and I shall… 🙂

Art and Soul Retreat-ing

Pics to follow and teacher info below for “enquiring minds” like myself who like to read ahead. They were all AH-MAY-ZING teachers who shared a plethora of information and technique (and supplies!) and I highly recommend checking them out (in person if you are nearby – they’re from all over).

I took 6 day-long classes learning the following:

  1. Wet (Nuno) Felting – made a scarf!
    (LeBrie Rich – Pen Felt)
  2. Doll making with cloth and paper clay – WIP! 🙂 Paper clay is fun!
    (Lulu Moonwood Murakami – lulumoonarts)
  3. Needle felting with a sewing machine – made 3 bases I’m in love with! (broke some needles – I’m not proud – “it’s part of the process” – more on that later)
    (Rebeckah Meier Designs)
  4. Gold leaf and copper strung African beads on a half ostrich egg bowl – featured below!
    (Debbie Rijns, who specializes in Precious Metal Clay work in South Africa – I couldn’t find just one link that summarizes her artistic work – best to internet-search her)
  5. Hand stitching and embellishing the Alabama Chanin Way – after all these years of hand-sewing I learned a new way to thread, knot and sew. Amazing. (WIP! I bought a shirt pattern…there’s A LOT OF HAND stitching to do…hopefully I can finish it while I’m still this size. 🙂
    (Natalie Chanin designed the pattern and technique – Patti Calande taught the class)
  6. Basket weaving with sea grass – another WIP (boy did I dig this one! Weaving is so meditative for me.)
    (Donna Sakamoto Crispin – the amazing artist/teacher blend we’re all looking for! Donna was great!)

A Finished Product: “Home Base”

I enjoyed figuring out this artistic vision as I went. Layer work is still a challenge for me, though I learned so much about the value of strategic layering throughout the week.

This one is named “Home Base” because it incorporates elements of all my home bases (virtual, physical and metaphysical).

These photos are staged on the lobby floor of the hotel in a brief moment of Oregon sun (yes, I was laying on the ground taking pictures when my significant other arrived…he wasn’t surprised and offered to help…bless our lovies!)

African album beads and grass seeds, copper wire, seashells, monkeywood base, gold leaf edging
African album beads (red/black around edge), grass seeds & Ethiopian silver (red/green hanging right side), copper wire, seashells, monkey wood base, gold leaf edging, armadillo symbol from Sand People drawings (for me on this bowl this represents my hometown of San Antonio, TX).


A look at the inside of the bowl. African porcupine quill at the front.
A look at the inside of the bowl. African porcupine quill at the front. I learned how to “stitch” with copper wire (lesson learned: it pretends to be like thread, but it absolutely isn’t thread in some crucial ways – blergh!). I especially appreciated the way Debbie taught me to “hide” the wire behind each inside disc. That’s some tricky sh*t that took me LOTS-O-PRACTICE to secure those beads.


I had a touristy seashell bracelet in my stash, so I cut i apart and stitched the seashells onto the ostrich shell with copper wire. They had 2 holes each already drilled so it was pretty easy to incorporate.
I had a touristy seashell bracelet in my stash, so I cut it apart and stitched the seashells onto the ostrich shell with copper wire. The shells had 2 holes each already drilled so they were pretty easy to incorporate. The image at the bottom of this view is the Coral Tree seed pod, which grows in South Africa and ALSO in Southern California (in my front yard!). It was a nice connecting home image for me, and it sits opposite the armadillo on the bowl.


The tiny coiled copper wires are the beginning and end of my beading work (fun shadows!).
The tiny coiled copper wires (left of photo) are the beginning and end of my beading work (fun shadows!).

It was good layer work for me – I started with the green wash paint inside and dots in the middle, and they ended up guiding the bead design.


Lovin' the sun on this one!
Lovin’ the sun on this one!

I really enjoyed this class, learning about gold leaf and incorporating South African Sand People images into my work (there’s also: giraffe and the “thread of knowing,” which represents our collective conscious dreams).

Get out there and try something new!
Crafting on…!

Inspirations and Invitations

Oh the hard-working postal folks brought me some fun things today! I was in meetings all day at work so the fun was doubled when I slogged into the house with my information-worker self and saw two exciting packages addressed to me!

One was from my mom and included some beautiful patchwork squares I’m definitely taking to PDX as part of my art stash. The card cover speaks for itself (thanks mom!!) (there’s even more inspirational stuff inside of course. snippet: “Anything that you believe you can do you have always done.” Mom Historians are amazing, am I right? ).

I decided to use a paragraph break to separate that from the fact that I used my best bartender skills to swirl those quilt patches for best camera effect (nobody knows what I’m talking about, right?…).

quilt squares and card
Inspiration and supplies from TX!







In the same load I got something from my Art and Soul Retreat friends in Portland!!

Art and Soul Retreat, Portland, OR
Art and Soul Retreat Portland, OR









(that’s a bottle of bubbles with a tiny wand attached to that huge card deck)

Art & Soul Retreat cover
The following pages hold cards for each of the classes i signed up for.








If you’re available to travel/attend I would love to see you there: Art and Soul Retreat.