Sunday, May 31, 2009

Please do not worry

I am going to be away from this blog and do not know if I will have access while I am gone. I do not want you to worry, you will be added to the giveaway, if you comment, when I get back.
You will see it as soon as I get back. Do not post a 1000 times ;-O, I have comment approval and I will be deleting all duplicates in the final tally anyway.
Here is a link.
There is also a right hand side link under the title Giveaway page.

I am fine, I am in West Virginia playing and sharing at the Polymer clay and mixed media retreat.

You should be there.
I hope you all have a beautiful and magical week.
Love and hugs,

Friday, May 29, 2009

I love this picture

I love this picture.

1. Howard is playing farmer.

2.Last year the neighbor did this for us,because Howard couldn't.

3. The birds follow him behind the tractor grabbing the bugs. Some fly around. The ravens walk behind.

4. I am grateful.

I have been tagged! Twice!

Well, I have been tagged by the hostess with the mostess Jodi "doll artist extraordinaire" Creager, be sure and visit her, her husband Richard and their family of creations at Creager Studios, you will be glad you visited. A sense of humor, a unique insight on life, and the ability to convey it all in words are just a few of her many assets.
Sorry it took me so long Jodi!!

I have also been tagged by Brittany at Papermoonies

She is a talented, funny, and great walking partner!!

I had already listed her in my tagging, but she beat me to it by tagging me first. Does that nullify the tag? Oh good, I am so glad it does O-:

I shouldn't have waited so long.
And I am going to tag her!
I am also going to do what Jodi Creager did on her last tag and let the tagees come and do it or not do it. I know you are all so busy and have life to do too!!!
I love you all!
If you don't go to these blogs my dear readers, you will be the one that loses. You will willing deprive your self of some wisdom, some talent, and some wonderful human beings.
These are the rules for the 'Tag'
1)Name and link back to the person who tagged you.
2)List six things 6 (un) important things that make you happy.
3)Tag 6 bloggers and let them know they're it by leaving them a comment on their blog.So here goes...

1.) My family and my new granddaughter Madisyn. When she smiles my heart just melts.

2.) My friends, who are really family, especially the nuns!

3.) My mind and how well it works most of the time.

4.) Realizing that my life is very good and I have everything I need.

5.) When ideas in my head come out of my hands the way I see them in my head.

6.) Learning something old.

These are a few of my favorite things... and then I don't feel sooooooooooooooooooo bad.

Now...Bloggers that I am gonna chase and TAG.......

Bring some popcorn, a cuppa, woman's or man's traveler companion, and maybe even a Kleenex.

You will be glad you took the time to visit all of them.

Brittany at

Cindy at

Cassy at

Renee at


Ces at

Bella at

Annie at

Where there are no chickadees at

Lynda at

CK at

Dawn at

Elizabeth at

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Nature is the best artist

When I am looking for inspiration for color palettes, I go to my yard.

This is a Special Cactus; it was given to me by my friends, Irene and Lee before they moved to Kansas.

I miss them dearly! It is one of those things that we all do, get close right before someone moves. Or when they get sick…or before they die.
Note to myself, “live and love now, no regrets later”.
Anyhow, they lived near the beach, I don’t. I knew the cactus would like it here, cacti like it hot.
It is coloring up very nicely. Now it is flowering.
It was just as beautiful at their house but a lot lighter.
It reminds me of good times and good friends and it has a great color palette to play with. Don’t you agree?

Piñata Ink on Opaque White

I also love the way the Piñata ink looks on the Opaque White Cernit.
The Opaque White is what I call a Ice white or White White. It is very white and even after baking stays quite white. I just love this.
So when I apply the Piñatas to the surface of this very white clay the colors stay vibrant and very true to what they are out of the bottle. They are not muddied up by a muddy white color.
Here is the tile baked (on the left) and raw clay (on the right) so you can see the darkening of the colors that I was talking about in the previous post.

This is a technique that I just love where you are using sheets of the Opaque white and coloring them with the Piñata ink on the surface. All of those sheets are stacked and rolled through the pasta machine several times and then stacked and cut with a ripple blade. And best of all it is a rainbow ripple, YAY!!! I love rainbows. Any way… I digress.
Each side of the slice will be very different from the next.
This is a version of Mokume Gane that uses a distorted blade instead of distorting the stack.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Piñata ink and translucent clays

You probably already know this, but the Cernit colors, Opaque white, Pearl white, Porcelain White, Biscuit, Nightglow, Granite, Champagne, and Translucent can be tinted or colored with the Piñata inks. So in reality you could buy just a couple of colors of Cernit and have your self a virtual field day if you already have the Piñata inks and some of you might. The inks can be used on paper, leather, glass, tile, silk, cotton, organza, lace, and some plastics. This is a very versatile product and definitely one I carry in my tool box.

The blue in this flower cane is Baja Blue Piñata ink tinted Pearl Cernit. The background is the plain porcelain white. The color you see in it is a color core and then the cane slices are added to it. I like the frosted appearance.

Baja Blue and Senorita Margarita make a great purple. One drop of each color should do it.

It doesn’t take much of the ink at all. They are somewhat translucent themselves and quite intense in color. If you are out of the USA you can not get them from us, you have to find them locally, go to they have a product finder there under each product or you can call or write them.

You want to condition your clay. With Cernit it is important to thoroughly condition the clay. I condition and flatten a piece about 1/8 of a small block with my fingers and then I put a drop of Piñata on the clay and let it dry on the clay.

With Sunbright Yellow and Tangerine will probably need a couple of drops. Now when I say one or two, I mean one or two, the Piñata ink is very strong.

With the Opaque white you will get more pastely colors and with the porcelain white they are almost like frosted glass that is colored. With the translucent they will be more intense in color or the strength of the color. They may also look very light before baking and will darken up some after baking.

Put on a pair gloves and condition the ink color in to the clay.

With the reds and the pinks they will migrate in to other colors of clay when the clay is unbaked.

So make the colors and if you are using the reds and the pinks, make your canes small and bake your work right away.

I like that I can use this to make a ton of different pearl colors too and the nightglow is a blast with the Piñata because it still glows even when using a dark ink like the sapphire blue. YAY!!!

The ink is also fun to use by applying it directly to a bead that you have already formed to color the bead. I used this method in my Inkling beads.
There is a link to that and the Piñata Ink Flowers and leaves here.
Here is the URL,
This is another project called Glowing Night Lights here.
and the URL

Monday, May 25, 2009

memorial day

Happy Memorial day,

The soldiers in my life wear no uniforms, but they are strong and they fight with all of their might.

The soldiers in my life draw no blood but they pump my heart with their light.

The soldiers in my life struggle with the plight of human existence and strive to do and live what is just and right.

Let me not forget the battle, let me not forget the struggle, let me not forget the pain as I fly my flag half mast in to the night.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Getting your creative energy rolling

I don’t have periods of what some may call “artist’s block”. For one thing I never call it that, I call those “moments of reflection or absorption” where I am digesting all I have learned in the past day, week, month, or year of creative materialization. A lot of times the block can come from the label itself. If I upload a bunch of stuff... I have to give it a moment to be found. It is the same in my head. After intense manifestation, I give it a chance to settle in.
Another thing is, I also just know that creativity is there, I don’t even give it another choice.
After a period of intense physical manifestation it can seem like I am “blocked” if I am not outputting “stuff”, but as an artist I can be creating and manifesting in the mental level all of the time. I also take note of these brain “sticky notes” and validate them by acknowledging them.

If I do have periods of not knowing where to go next, I refer to a journal of ideas. One way to start your creative journal is to make time or a date with yourself to create something.

I have to create and make things, I have done this so long that it is mostly second nature to me. It is how I roll, as my kids say.

It is what I have to do or die if I don't.

You might be the same, which is why you may be feeling frustrated , crazy, or bad about doing everyday stuff and putting it before creating. That everyday stuff has to be done too and it is balance that makes us feel good! It is in the balance that we are most healthy as human beings, body and soul. And everyday stuff can be creative too. Do it with your heart, and head!
Once you get the hang of this, you may have to schedule your everyday stuff. But be in the moment where ever you are at the time, feel it, notice the colors, hear the sounds and search for the feeling inside, stop listing everything over and over in your head.
Everyone has a different way, but in order to get you going, why not take 2 hours out of every week to sit down and do something, schedule it, make it a date with yourself or destiny!! We all have two hours somewhere, turn off the TV. Then through out the week before the date, think about it. Write it down in a "Me Journal" (a spiral notebook is great for this, and you can call it whatever you want) what you are going to do in your two hours. You have to do the two hours whether you have something planned or not, so you might as well embrace this to get you going. Part of the process is gathering the supplies, planning the card, the painting, or what ever you are going to make or create, making drawings of the idea, and write the feelings.

Make a day to do the two hours on. Every Thursday afternoon at 3:00PM, or AM if you are a vampire ;-) for instance, and commit to this, it is a date with you, for you, and your mental health. As Nike says "just do it".

This also gets you in the habit of taking time out to create, instead of piling life up in front of you all of the time. During the week before your date, you will have flashes of ideas or insights. Write those in a different section of your “me journal”, the idea section. If you have a dream about a design, you write it down and describe it all the way, notes about what it is and how to make it and how you will feel, and what you need to do it. Even during your two hour date, things will come to you. Write them down, they come in handy for the next "two hour date".

Even if it seems stupid, write it down. This is your book to use and share, so no one even has to see it. Hide it if it makes you feel better and safer, just write it down.

I have also found that this is a great thing to have, this journal, when in intense periods of making things or working for money. Which for me had the same effect on me as being in a desert period. At that time I was making lots of the same thing over and over again and it seemed that my creativity was starving for something new, fresh, and another color even. After doing this, lets say for the Christmas season, I, in January could not talk or even help my kids do anything. I just wanted to lay on the couch and sleep. This is why I say balance is healthy.

Battery was low, dangerously low.

It is good for unloading in too, keep track of, and stimulating the creative being that you are, because you are a creative being. Collect pictures, sayings, and anything that makes you feel and put in there.
We come from a long line of ancestor women that picked up mud and made things, it is genetic and feeding it makes you whole in oh so many ways!
I have found that I have more ideas than I can use and I am good problem solver, if I breathe! I don't understand some of what I write down later, but if my brain is uncluttered and in my journal, it is free to create and invent much more. I also find that I can not make enough time to create anymore, that is all I want to do and if I don't feel like creating anything at sometime, I am OK because I know more will come, always, and I have so many ideas in my journal there are no worries anyway.
Oh my goodness does the house suffer for this, now.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

1st Giveaway, Thank you, thank you, thank you from the bottoms of our hearts

Howard and I wanted to do something special this year and we wanted to do it with all of you. We have been in the Polymer clay and craft supply business for 30 years, this year. That, my dear friends is a feat. We have also been married for 30 years this year and let me tell you that is a monumental feat!! LOL!!
Sometimes though, it has been the business that has been tougher. At least we have had each other and you.

We have met many, many, many wonderful people, friends, customers, and acquaintances in all the years we have been doing this and some of those mentioned are no longer with us for many reasons and we can not thank them personally. We are grateful for each and every one of you. You have touched our hearts and I hope that we have touched yours.
THANK YOU from the very bottoms and tops of our hearts; you are our light and our life.

We were looking for a way to pay it forward and backwards and to let you know that you matter to us and you are perfect just the way you are. We think we have come up with a wonderful way to celebrate this.

This is going to be the beginning of a year of giving. It will take us through our anniversaries, Children’s birthdays (happy birthday, Shas!!!), grandchildren’s birthdays and many more important family and business celebrations. I am counting on hitting some of yours too.

The giveaways will happen at irregular intervals, so it is probably best if you follow, but it is not a requirement. I am so grateful to have you if you do decide to follow.
There is only one thing you have to do and that is to leave a comment to the giveaway post in question at the time.

I will count all of the responses and generate a random number from (I have also added the generator to the blog if you want to use it) and announce the winner the day after the contest closes.

This first giveaway is brought to you by these lovely and wonderful people and companies; with out them this would not be possible at all. Please make an effort to visit their sites. Thank you, thank you, thank you to each and every one of you:

Clay Factory


Art Glitter

Makin’s Clay

Jacquard Products

I am going to run this till the 14th of June, that is Sunday, and the contest will close at 12 midnight PDT

Here is what you will get:
Art Institute Glitter- basic set with fabric glue
Sculpting tool
Bamboo skewer
Clay blade
Set of 3 round cutters
2- 2 ounce blocks of Cernit phthalate free clay in black
Pendant I made from photographing the step by step instructions
Step by step instructions

added 06/17/09
#16 Myra Katz won the giveaway, congratulations Myra! There were two duplicate posts and those were eliminated.

Friday, May 15, 2009

it is rubbing off on me

I am surrounded by doll artists and thoroughly enjoy and admire all of their work.
I am wondering if you can learn something by osmosis?

It is just not what I do, but I think they are rubbing off on me.

My daughter was just in hospital having the cutest Grandbaby in the world (no, I am not biased) and she received flowers in these great little vases. I am always saving things because I might use them for something someday 20 years from now. I saved those vases.
After doing this all of my life, I can not save another thing. I notice with others I talk to, that are about my age, this seems to be something they are going through too. At least I am not alone in this. Must be this "50 something clean up your stuff before you die so other people don't have to go through it or see the crap you have been hanging on to forever" thing.

Do you find that the minute you give it away, recycle, or "goodwill" it that you come up with something dynamite to use it for? Maybe I should threaten all of my junk.

Anyway I am tangenting... I took the vases out of the cupboard and I put them in the "recycled glass" bin. YAY!!! Great start. Now when I do this I must make a note to self to take them immediately to the recycle place. I went to sleep that night and I dreamt all night about doing things with the vases, either I am losing my mind or feeling guilty about recycling perfectly good vases, or a lot of both! I saw the vases being held by the object that I put on them. and this is what I came up with.

The woman looks like my great grandmother and please don't be too harsh in your judgements, I dropped her on her face before she was baked and I can see that I need to take more time with my blending. But the blue eye She also has a blue tint to her hair. My great Grandmother did not. The other is just vampy, and for the life of me cute is in my genes or something, I have a very hard time doing scary. This vamp has some seriously cute melancholy going on here. Must be all of the medications humans are taking now. ;-O

I am very happy with these though and wanted to share and now I can not possibly throw them out, can I?
Have a great weekend everyone!!!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Happy Mother's Day

If you are a woman, you are a mother, some in more traditional ways and others in less.
Mother of ideas, of friends, of designs, of writing, of poems, of animals, of parents, of art, of other peoples kids, of patients, of brothers and sisters, of communities, of societies, of husbands... SO, Happy Mother's Day Beautiful Woman! Thank you for giving birth in many ways.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

I just love a give away

And I love skulls ...
My friend Brittany over at is having a give away! She makes these darling little sugar skull pins and she is giving 3 away on her blog.
Go have a look see and you never know you just might get lucky.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


These are the most beautiful flowers and add a light to my life. The red is brilliant.

And... my gophers don't eat them (crossing fingers). They will even eat the garlic, just not as often. They LOVE roses and they have taken down a full grown apricot tree after (thank goodness) the first full crop. The apricots were some of the best I have ever eaten, which made it so hard to lose the tree.

One year they undermined the road (dug a hole under the road) and a big rain came and washed through the whole and washed out part of the road, when the rain was over there was a hole on the side of the road I could stand in. I am short, but it still came up to my thighs.

So I now spend time trying to find things that they won't eat. I also plant in chicken wire baskets that I make but that is no guarantee either. I drill holes in Cat litter buckets and plant in those, not so good for the bigger things though. But they don't go through those either. The buckets will also break down in a few years from the sun out here and have to be replaced. They have to be watered and fertilized more often also.

I get a perverse thrill after watering and seeing the mounds of dirt around the bucket and the plant still there. You know the movie with Bill Murray , Caddyshack ,that is real.

That's how I ended up with the huge crop of garlic I have. The gopher would dig a hole, and I would stuff a clove of garlic down there, LOL! We even have cloves of garlic in the little pathways. These don't get watered often.

It only worked for a bit and then he started on the tops of the garlic. He comes out of the ground for those. I believe the bulbs are still there, because the shoots will start again. You know the cartoons of the whole plant going into the ground a lit at a time, bit by bit, that is real people, I have seen it.

Green is green in my opinion and even if it is garlic, it is beautiful to me in the summer here. But those red flowers are divine.

5th of May

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Polymer Clay Collaborative & Mixed Media Retreat

Register now!

Hi everyone, Registration has been extended to May 10th!

It's not too late to sign up for an incredible get-away week with other artists. Registrations are still being taken through May 10th for the Polymer Clay Collaborative & Mixed Media Retreat, in beautiful Shepherdstown, West Virginia.

Previous post
Take advantage of your tax refunds, and get away from your daily demands, routines, stresses!

Retreat Dates: June 1-5, priced from $375 (commuters) to $475 (single) for an entire week of free demos, three meals per day, and much more! See the retreat website for additional info about mini-workshops, the location, etc.

Register now, single accommodations are still available!

Registration ends May 10th. All registrations must be postmarked by no later than May 10.
If you register during this extended period, please e-mail us to let us know that you have sent your registration.

Mona Kissel, Syd Wellman, Anne Bowers, Heidi Spicer